They say those that play together, stay together.  Tim and Shannon are the quintessential Colorado couple:  happiest when they’re together in the mountains; lovers of powder days and mountain adventures with their dogs.  Shannon and Tim’s story is an interesting one that makes me laugh out loud every time I read it!  So I’ll quote Shannon on this one: ”

How we met…

It was a hot summer night in Los Angeles.  Shannon hit the town with her group of beautiful friends all dressed in high heels and small dresses so tight it was hard to breathe.  Tim was out with his crew of hooligans, hair gel perfect, shirts with hairless chests showing, wearing the classiest Affliction shirts.  Both groups decided to go to one of the nicest clubs in town. They were all looking for a place that was loud, hot, and served only fluorescent colored liquor.  Immediately when Shannon walked in her eyes locked onto a man on the dance floor.  He danced so well it was almost hypnotizing…


As most of you know that is a ridiculous story and clearly not how Shannon and Tim met.  The real story is even better…


Shannon had moved to Boulder, CO in 2007; a year after graduation from Champlain College in Burlington, VT.  She had several friends from Burlington that had also moved out to Boulder.  All of them found jobs and started living and loving a mountain life.  Shannon was working as a Nanny for a family with two young children. One of her friends, Emily, had started managing one of the local Humane Societies. Shannon would often take the children into the Longmont Humane Society to play with the kittens and puppies and visit her friend. Then Emily hired an extremely handsome, courteous, intelligent, athletic, adoring, bearded, Philadelphia Eagles fan (yes, we realize that is contradictory since Eagles fans are really never any of those qualities except maybe bearded, but it is all 100% true)…

In 2009 Tim had moved to Fort Collins, CO strictly to sample the local beer and ski as much as possible.  They became expensive hobbies for Tim and it unfortunately forced him to find a job.  It was a tough time searching for work but he ended up being hired by a nice young woman named Emily at the Longmont Humane Society. As many of you know Tim does not stop talking and it wasn’t long before Emily realized there were really only three topics he spoke about; how the ski conditions were that week, how the Eagles are going to put him in an early grave, and his beloved dog Lula.  Emily realized she needed to get Tim out of her ear and quick.  She decided to pawn him off on a good friend of hers. Her exact words were:

“I have a great friend named Shannon from South Jersey who is a HUGE Eagles fan, she snowboards, and loves dogs! You NEED to meet her!”

Emily told him that she would introduce the two next time Shannon came into the shelter.  Tim was a little hesitant since she was a Jersey girl and a snowboarder but he always likes to meet new friends. Shannon was extremely hesitant because Tim had a beard. “Dirty hippy,” is what she immediately thought.  Both are very good reasons to avoid someone but luckily they were finally introduced.

[quote]Tim was working behind the main desk at the Humane Society when a very pretty young woman entered.  As he usually would when a good looking woman walked in, Tim became attentive and was ready to provide the best in customer service.  The woman walked straight towards the desk, blond hair somehow flowing in the non-existent wind inside the building, sunlight beaming off her like an angel.   Her big green eyes locked on the desk.  This woman was smiling and heading straight towards Tim, he stood up to provide that exceptional customer service.  She waved and said hello. “Oh boy!” Tim thought, this is my lucky day. Then the unexpected happened.  The woman’s bright smile, wave, and hello were directed to Tim’s boss who was sitting right next to him.  It was a total failure straight out of a movie scene.  Tim looked like a freshman at his first high school dance. Embarrassed, red faced, heart in his throat, the rug was just pulled out from under him. He sunk down low in his chair, upset that this perfect woman wasn’t excited to see him. The two ladies chatted for a few minutes and then…[/quote]

Boom!!! The best thing that could have occurred happened. Emily introduced this woman as her friend Shannon, the same one who she had told Tim about.  Now Tim was even more excited (and nervous).  The two chatted briefly, exchanged phone numbers, and agreed to get together sometime.  Emily’s plan to get Tim out of her ear was in full swing (she was more excited than Tim).

Of course Tim, being the cool cat and ladies’ man he is, waited to give Shannon a call.  A few days later Shannon came into the shelter and asked Tim why he hadn’t called her yet (she denies this occurrence). But he did call her soon after and since he had never been to Boulder they decided to get dinner at the Mountain Sun Brewery and Shannon would show him a bit of the town.

Their first date was truly one of the best dates in history.  The Mountain Sun has great food, better beer, board games, and no TV’s, perfect for a date.  The two talked all night and there was never a break in the conversation (as is usual when two Irish people are at a brewery).  They ate their dinner and Tim only finished half of his, because he didn’t want to look like a glutton (clearly that was a one time occurrence).  They had a few more micro brews and decided to take a walk on Pearl Street.  Shannon suggested playing darts at one of her favorite bars nearby.

The Sundown Saloon, many people do not know how it exists, especially on Pearl Street.  It is in a basement, it is hot, it is dark, smells like sweet stale beer, is mostly devoid of women, and sawdust covers the floor. There is a single can of beans from the 1980’s in a non-working vending machine selling for 75 dollars; its sole purpose is because you must offer food if you sell alcohol in Colorado.  The bar has low ceilings, exposed wood beams, and bricks.  The decoration is old license plates nailed to the floor and passed out patrons who have been there since noon. There are several pool tables and dart boards, our reason for the visit.

As Tim entered that bar his soul said yes to two things: The Sundowner and Shannon.  If this place is this girl’s favorite bar; then this girl just became Tim’s favorite person.  Many girls would turn around halfway down the stairs leading to this place that God has forgotten. Tim knew Shannon was perfect if this is the kind of bar she liked. The two played several rounds of darts, where Shannon beat Tim with ease.  More beers, more darts, more juke box.
That night was simply wonderful.
Two weeks later on April 7, 2009, they ended up at The Sundown Saloon to play darts; of course and Tim decided to ask Shannon to be his girlfriend.  She said, “yes!”

The Proposal…

In Tim’s eyes the proposal was going to be perfect.  The ring was just finished and finally in Tim’s possession. The couple was planning on spending a weekend in a powder filled adventure.  Lots of snow had been falling on the 10,200 foot town of Leadville and a few days playing in the powder would be a perfect time to get away from the world.  They planned on snowshoeing new trails and riding at Ski Cooper, a very small mountain nestled in the peaks near Leadville.  So Shannon packed the food and clothes and Tim packed the snowshoes, skis, snowboard, boots, and of course Birdie and Ellie.  Shannon asked Tim if everything was packed and of course it was…

Well that’s when the couple realized that Tim made a BIG mistake. Being so distracted about the proposal Tim had grabbed his big, beat up snowboard boots instead of Shannon’s nice, new snowboard boots.  Well as most people know, boots are as essential to snow sports as the skis and snowboards themselves. Clearly Shannon was not too happy with Tim’s foolish mistake.  She got over it quickly enough (a few beers helped) and knew she could rent a pair at the mountain.  Then the morning came followed by more frustration.  The couple waited in an hour long line to rent a pair of boots. All of this disruption clearly could have been avoided without Tim’s blunder.  Finally with boots on her feet the couple were riding up the chairlift.

The frustration ended as they noticed untracked powder in the trees! This is the perfect recipe for a great day!  The whole time Tim was nervous. He wanted to make sure the proposal was perfect.  The ring was in his cargo pocket but it felt like a brick and he didn’t want her to notice and spoil the surprise.

The snow was so deep in points it was up to their waist!  It was a blue bird day and everything was adding up to be a perfect proposal.  The couple took a short break to play with the dogs and enjoy one or three New Belgium beers in the parking lot.  Upon heading back on the slopes Tim slipped two beers in his pockets for the lift (he was planning to use the beers as a celebration for after the proposal).

After one run Shannon suggested drinking the beers on the next lift.  This was it, Tim had to ask!  [quote]The couple was cruising through the trees in knee deep powder when Tim had to get Shannon to wait to pop the big question.  He pulled up to her, took one ski off to get on one knee and sank deep into the snow!  Even with his leg extended it still looked like he was on one knee!  Deep in the snow covered pine trees Tim popped the big one and luckily Shannon said YES![/quote]

The rest of the day was filled with smiles celebration! Shannon forgave Tim for his earlier forgetfulness. The trip was magical and the couple rejoiced in the next big step in their lives!”


With an awesome, outdoor-loving couple like this, I knew their engagement shoot had to be EPIC: involving backcountry skiing (& snowboarding), thin air, and their fun-loving dogs.  So we headed up to the top of Loveland Pass at 11,991ft to play in the snow.