Weddings & Celebrations: First love in 1st Grade, he pops the question on stage

Finding love on the monkey bars

Just Married: Brandon and Lauren Ballhaus
When:  June 22, 2013
Where: Hyde Park Community United Methodist Church, Cincinnati, Ohio
Reception: Savannah Center, Cincinnati, Ohio
Maid/Matron of Honor: Emily Lefferson, sister of the bride
Best Man: Eric Ballhaus, brother of the groom

Lauren Lefferson, daughter of Doug and Gretchen Lefferson of Williamsburg, Ohio was married on Saturday, June 22 to Brandon Ballhaus, son Todd and Leslie Ballhaus of Williamsburg, Ohio.

The couple met in school in the first grade. Although the two did not officially date until high school, the groom was love struck the moment that he spotted the bride from the monkey bars as she played on the elementary school playground. After five years of dating, the groom finally popped the question in 2011 while on vacation in Nashville, Tenn.

Mrs. Ballhaus, 23, is an engineer at Procter & Gamble in research and development for Hair Care-Global Styling. Her father has worked for First Financial Bank for 27 years and is currently the president of commercial banking and wealth management. Her mother has been a registered nurse for 25 years and will complete her master’s at the University of Cincinnati this spring to become a family nurse practitioner.

Mr. Ballhaus, 24, is a registered nurse at Good Samaritan Hospital in the operating room. His father has worked at Sysco for 14 years and is currently the training and development manager and his mother is a bartender.

The ceremony took place at Hyde Park Community United Methodist Church, surrounded by large, stone aisles and beautiful stained glass windows. Family members filled the room with faith and love with various scripture readings and solos. The bride’s cousin, Emma Steward, sang the hymn, “When Love is Found,” in honor of the couple’s unity.

The reception followed at the Savannah Center in Cincinnati where once again the couple was honored with a song, Christina Perri’s, “A Thousand Years,” sung by the bride’s sister. Hot appetizers and dinner was followed by a delicious cheesecake, the couple’s choice for their wedding cake, and of course a late night snack of pizza for all of the guests. DJ Mark McFadden kept the room hopping right through to the last dance, Brad Paisley’s “She’s Everything,” giving a glimmer of romantic, high school nostalgia to the couple.

The bride and groom say that it is a shared set of values and their ability to bring out the best in each other that makes their love so special. The pair recently purchased a home in Williamsburg, Ohio and plan to stay there now that they are married.

Reunited on Facebook

Recently Engaged: Eric Mayleben and Jennifer Clark
When:  Oct. 11, 2014
Where: Hyde Park Community United Methodist Church, Cincinnati, Ohio
Reception: Marriott, Union Center, Cincinnati, Ohio

Jennifer Clark, daughter of Carol and Greg Amend of Mason, Ohio and the late Thomas Clark, is engaged to be married  to Eric Mayleben, son of Wally and Sheila Patton of Oregonia, Ohio  and Dick and  Annette Mayleben of Trenton, Ohio.

The couple initially met in the 1980’s when their brothers played basketball together. They reunited via Facebook in 2010.

Ms. Clark, 38, works as an administrative. Mr. Mayleben, 42, is in sales.

The bridegroom says that he knew it was love from their first date. After much Facebook stalking and flirting, the two finally had an official date at Bar 71 and have been inseparable ever since. Last Christmas, Mr. Mayleben was playing a Centurion Guard in his church’s Christmas nativity display. At the end of his scene, he brought Ms. Clark up in front of the audience and turned her over to “King Harrod” (played by his pastor). Declared to be a spy in the kingdom, King Harrod gave Ms. Clark a "life sentence." It was then that the groom-to-be turned to her, told her she should listen to the King, dropped to one knee, and asked her to spend her "life sentence” with him.

The bride-to-be says it is Mr. Mayleben’s sense of humor that she loves the most about him as well as the way that he loves her.  She says her love for him extends to his two amazing daughters. The groom to be says it is Ms. Clark’s amazing love for him and his girls as well as her ability to be a strong role model that makes her so special to him.

The pair plans to stay in the Mason/West Chester area after their nuptial and hope to buy a house and begin making memories together as a family.

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