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Secret Romances and Scavenger Hunts: #ZolaCouple Carol and Zach

This #ZolaCouple started off their romance in secret. Afraid to throw off the dynamic between a close group of friends by dating each other, Zach and Carol snuck around for a full month before being outed. A year and a half later, Zach planned a scavenger hunt that lead to a proposal and now the two are in full wedding planning mode.

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How did you meet? 
We met at the California Delta the summer of 2009 through mutual friends. At that time, we were both dating other people and lived on opposite coasts. It wasn’t until early 2012 when we both lived in the Bay Area that we became good friends. We were part of a close knit group of couples and were the single ones. We dated other people on and off for awhile, but it soon became clear that we were growing into more than friends. Afraid about the dynamics of the group, we started secretly dating. The secret lasted no more than a month.

How did you get engaged? 
Carol: Zach asked me to block out the entire day of December 28th (2013) so that we could celebrate a late Christmas together. He had remembered me mentioning many months before that I had never been on a scavenger hunt. Instead of purchasing a gift, he planned a scavenger hunt. Each clue led me to significant places where we had formed memories together during our relationship. As we walked up the hill to the apartment after the final clue, Zach stopped on the street, reminiscing in the same spot where he kissed me for the first time. Right there on the sidewalk, he got down on his knee and pulled out the most beautiful ring, asking me if I would spend the right of my life with him. The answer was easy – I said yes!

What’s the first thing you did after you got engaged? 
Carol: Zach had asked our friends and family to meet us in the apartment. It was there that they surprised me and together, with the people we love, we celebrated the beginning of the rest of our lives together.

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Any tips for balancing wedding planning with your everyday busy life?
We both have demanding jobs (Carol manages a creative team at a tech communications agency and Zach is an EMT), so finding time to plan was hard. We highly suggest hiring a planner, even a day-of planner like we have, to help. Other than that, we did a little before and after work, and a lot on the weekends when we could. We also did a lot of dividing and conquering – Carol did the design work, Zach helped coordinate beer, music, and transportation. Organization is key – we had a lot of spreadsheets and to-do lists to help keep on top of it all.

What are you most excited for about newlywed life?
We’re really looking forward to starting our lives together as a married couple – all the firsts and the adventures to come!

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Go-to dinner on a week night?
Oven baked salmon and veggies.

Favorite sunday breakfast?
Waffles and bacon. Plus coffee. Always coffee.

What are you most excited for on your registry?
Carol is most excited about the Dyson V6 Animal Cordless Stick Vacuum. But Zach was most excited to receive De’Longhi’s Pump Espresso Machine. Though we’re also excited about the honeymoon fund!!!

See some of our favorites from Carol and Zach’s registry below and make sure to check out their entire selection here.

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1. OXO’s Good Grips 10-Piece Kitchen Tool Set
2. Acaciaware’s Bermuda Chip and Dip Tray
3. Lumberstak’s Wood Stacking Block Lawn Game

Images || (Featured) Zack and Becky Photography

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