Most romantics can account
for the moment they knew “The One” was within their midst. For Morgan Phares, hers came while hanging out at a movie theater with a date that really wasn’t a date until it was made clear that he was a buttered popcorn kind of guy.
That’s when Morgan, who wants nothing on her popcorn but butter, looked at Ryan Williams and thought that if this is a date and not some group outing (Ryan’s sister and brother-in-law were in tow) it might turn out to be a decent one.
Especially since after the movie, Ryan asked Morgan out for ice cream, ditching the sister and brother-in-law, which to Morgan upgraded the date status to, well, a date.
What really set Ryan and Morgan in motion was when he walked her home, and the two sat on the front steps talking until 3 a.m.
That was, no kidding, Valentine’s Day of last year, in fact. On May 28, in Lubbock, home of Texas Tech University (where the couple attended) and Harrigan’s Restaurant (where they had their first official date – just like Ryan’s parents, Arlington Mayor Jeff and wife Karen), they will be hitched.
Not for Morgan. Brides can often talk about the time at age 10 when they walked their dolls down a fantasy aisle and at 12 when they came up with the wedding colors and at 17 when they nailed down the church and who their bridesmaids would be.
Morgan knew she wanted to find the right guy – God-fearing, handsome, compassionate – have children and settle down, but it certainly wasn’t the reason she enrolled at Tech and majored in education.
In fact, the day she saw Ryan leading a church small group was what gave her the chills in a matrimonial kinda way.
While Ryan confesses he was smitten
with his fiancée the moment he caught a glimpse of her in church, for Morgan “it was a gradual thing,” she says. “Although I knew I liked him pretty much right away.”
Morgan was just as sensible when it came to the proposal. Our YouTube age has turned the staging of wedding proposals into colossal undertakings that resemble creatively artful plots that play out like short films.
“I can’t say I ever thought about the proposal in a specific way,” Morgan says. “Except I wanted my family close by. ”
They were that, as Ryan planned months in advance. He did it at the church they attended, lining the room with yellow, (friendship) pink (romance), red (love) and white (unity) roses and even having their dog, Sadie, trot in with the ring tied tightly to the collar.
Too tight, actually. As these things go, the best part is the one that never really goes as planned. For Ryan, that was the trouble of getting the ring off the dog, and once he figured that out, having the ring tumble onto the floor.
No problem. Ryan eventually asked, she eventually said yes, and just like that, Arlington’s First Family grew. Morgan just moved here from Lubbock to job hunt while Ryan settles in at Graham Associates, his father’s engineering and planning firm.
So far, the bride is getting used to
a new lifestyle of formal gatherings and picture taking and being a little more under the spotlight.
Life here is a nice yin to Lubbock’s yang, where they often spend time zipping around in 4x4s.
“Here we’re kind of held to certain expectations,” Ryan says of being the Mayor’s son.
In Lubbock, “It’s ponytails and being covered in dirt,” says Morgan.
Like butter and popcorn. The best of both worlds.