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Tar Heel State Love

We love southern engagements and this super cute UNC Chapel Hill couple is a prime example. These college sweethearts met at UNC and took it back to campus for their engagement shoot. Maya and Jarrette are North Carolina bred and bleed Carolina blue. Their love for their school is only eclipsed by their love for each other. Learn more about this Tar Heel couple and enjoy their engagement story.

Bride Name:

Maya Mitchell

Groom Name:

Jarrette Pittman

Engagement Location:

Snellville, GA

Engagement Date:

July 4, 2014

Alma Mater of Bride:

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Alma Mater of Groom:

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Current City where you live:

Greenville, NC

Bride Hometown:

Raleigh, NC

Groom Hometown:

Scotland Neck, NC

Bride Sorority:

Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated

Groom Fraternity:

Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated

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How did you meet?

We met in Ebony Readers/Onyx Theater (EROT), a spoken word group on campus at UNC.

How long have you dated?

Since February 2007, 8 years

How did he propose?

It was July 4th weekend, and we went to visit my family in Snellville, GA, about 30 minutes from Atlanta.  After an amazing day spent barbecuing and hanging out at the pool my family piled into vehicles to go to the town fireworks.  Jarrette knows I love fireworks.  After running around with my siblings, and talking about reality TV with my Aunt, the fireworks finally started.  I was sitting on Jarrette’s knee when he asked me to stand up so he could stretch.  As I rose he took my hands, and proceeded to speak some of the most beautiful words to me before falling to his knee, and opening a box to an engagement ring more beautiful than I could have ever imagined.  He asked me to marry him, and through the ugliest of cries I squeezed out an excited “Yes!”  It was indeed the best day ever.    

When did you know he was the one?

 This is difficult because over the course of 8 years you find many moments that assure you this is “the one”.  If I had to recall a moment it was the first time I got sick while we were dating.  He called me to see if I wanted to have lunch, and I sounded like a train wreck.  It had to have been no more than 15 minutes that Jarrette showed up to my dorm room with medicine, soup, tea, movies, and anything else meant to get rid of what was only a bad cold.  He stayed there with me, and nursed me back to health over the course of a couple days, with an enthusiasm so grand it was as if HE was sick himself.  It was the sweetest thing ever. I felt like he was taking care of his most prized possession, and I knew a man that values me like this, is absolutely the one.  

What is the cutest thing he has done for you without you asking?

There was a time in college where I was particularly overwhelmed.  It proved to be an extremely busy period and sometimes I didn’t know how I was going to deal.  One night I realized at about 9:00pm that I had a 10 page paper due in a women’s studies class.  I went to Jarrette’s dorm room because all I could do was cry from the fatigue, and accept the fact that this was not something that wasn’t going to get done.  I needed support. Jarrette encouraged me to just lay down and go to sleep, understanding how much stress I was under.  The next morning I realized that Jarrette had stayed up all night and written my paper for me, with cited sources included.  I couldn’t believe it.  This was the ultimate sacrifice and one of the cutest, and most amazing things he has ever done for me.

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What is something you love about him that has completely changed your life?

Something I absolutely love about Jarrette is the commitment to his hometown, and spirit of giving back.  No matter how successful he continues to become, or how many activities he involves himself in, he always makes time to return to Scotland Neck, NC.  Whether he’s teaching vacation bible study to the children of his home church, coaching football and basketball at his old high school, or mentoring young men in the community he ALWAYS shows up.  It not only has allowed me to become more familiar with where Jarrette is from, but it continuously reminds me of the importance of making time for others, and showing gratitude to those people or places that share responsibility in where you find yourself in life.  Service has always been a part of our lives, but it has changed in the sense that it is not a “favor”, but a life responsibility.      

What part of wedding planning is making you crazy?

The guestlist.  This is one of the few times in life you realize just how many people are in, or have had a part in your life from childhood to adulthood.  Not to mention we have large families, are a part of a sorority and fraternity, and greatly value friendship.  If I could, I would love to invite all of those people.

What part of wedding planning can you not live without?

My wedding planner!  Elana Walker with Savoir Faire Signature Events is a Godsend. I love planning a quaint dinner party, or get together, but planning a wedding is a different ball game.  It can be mentally and physically overwhelming at times, especially when we don’t live in the town where everything will take place.  Elana helps me endure through the process, and know that everything is going to turn out more beautiful than I could ever imagine.  She thinks of the things I forget to think about, keeps me on track, and truly takes the stress out of planning.  Don’t know what I’d do without her expert and efficient planning, and positive energy.

What was your first thought the day after your engagement?

“I’m getting married to Jarrette Pittman!” When you’re in a relationship with someone for so long you experience highs and lows, and you learn about life, the other person, and yourself. Through it all you fantasize about marrying this person you are in love with.  You write about it in your journal, and you daydream about it at stoplights.  When I woke up the next day and looked at my beautiful ring (yes, I slept in it) all I could think about was how my dreams were coming true, my prayers were being answered, and I was marrying the man I KNOW God had for me 🙂  

What did you love about taking engagement pictures?

Being back at our alma mater, UNC.  It’s one of the most gorgeous place in the world.  As we walked through campus we remembered moments we had shared at particular places while there.  Remembering that one time we pulled an all nighter together in the library, or when we took an intentionally long walk back to our residence hall was an amazing feeling.  It reminded us how far we had come and where we fell in love.


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Who did you tell first about your engagement?

My linesisters! They had been there for it all, so naturally I went straight to our group chat to share the news.

Are you used to the ring yet?

I am used to the ring in the sense that it definitely feels like a part of me.  Recently,  I got all the way to work only to realize before walking in that I had left my ring at home! I turned around, drove all the way back just to get it.  Being without it makes me feel weird. Incomplete.  

How many times do you accidentally say girlfriend instead of fiance in a day?

I’ve been waiting on this moment forever, so NEVER!

FULL GALLERY

Photography by Lauren Cowart Photography (A amazingly talented friend of the couple from UNC-Chapel Hill)

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Michiel Perry

Michiel is a Black Southern Belle living a lowcountry life. I love all things fashion, home decor and southern! When I am not running around doing fun stuff for Black Southern Belle, I live in antique stores and have a minor obsession with historic homes 🙂

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