Kristina and James

Image 1 of Kristina and James

How We Met

It’s funny. We still look at each other with amazement, even now, when people ask us how we met. We smile at one another and I see the same twinkle in his eye that I remember seeing for the very first time on a stretch of beach when I was just 8 years old. He was my cousin’s best friend who happened to be staying with my extended family the same week we were staying there. We all met up at the same beach one afternoon and after the awkward first hellos and learning that his name was James, we spent the day playing in the blazing sun. The three of us quickly became inseparable. We laughed and played while the waves crashed around us. We created sand castles and found shells, all while playing the game of tag with the ocean.

Image 2 of Kristina and James

Who would have thought that the tall, freckled-faced boy that I met on the beach that day would become the love of my life? I certainly didn’t! After that day the three of us spent almost every spring, summer, and winter break together as we grew older. The best part? The three of us share the same birthday! So every year we would get together and celebrate with a big summer bash! As the years flew past, James became so much more to me than my best guy friend that I get to see a couple times a year. Even at a young age, I knew in my heart that this was special, and he quickly became the only guy I wanted to spend forever with. When I was 15, James finally got the courage to ask me out and we had our first official date at Chicken Out, where we split a piece of chocolate cake.

Image 3 of Kristina and James

how they asked

I spent every August vacationing with him and his family in South Carolina. And just like the several years prior- we were spending our days at the beach with the sand between our toes. After going out to dinner with his family one night, James asked if I wanted to take a walk on the beach. Which he knows is my favorite thing to do! There is just something so relaxing about walking on the beach after sunset! So I eagerly agreed! While we walked on the beach I explicitly remember that he wouldn’t allow me to walk on his left side. Which I thought was odd but he effectively played it off by twirling me around to dance in the surf. I guess I should have noticed the cargo shorts with multiple pockets that he was wearing! He distracted me with talk of the future, random kisses, and the occasional twirl around whenever I tried to get closer to the water on his left side. Once we reached the pier he stopped us to view the perfectly timed fireworks that began to shoot off into the sky. It was then while I was staring at the fireworks that I noticed he wasn’t standing beside me any longer. I turned to find him behind me down on one knee, with the fireworks lighting up his face. I noticed that grin of his and a little black box in his hand. My answer was always “yes!”

Image 4 of Kristina and James

Later I learned that once he saved up enough money, he found a specific ring designer to create my engagement ring from scratch. He didn’t just want any ordinary ring. He helped design every detail and helped pick out every diamond. He wanted it to be perfect, and it couldn’t have turned out more beautifully! One day I asked him what made him decide to propose to me that way. He gave me that grin of his and said “I always knew where I would propose. There wasn’t any doubt. I knew I had to take you back to where it all began.”

Image 5 of Kristina and James

(I think I fell in love with him a little more after that!) On our 5th year anniversary of being engaged, we celebrated the anniversary with a fun “engagement” shoot showcasing the stretch of beach and that infamous pier where he proposed!

Special Thanks

Simply Picturesque
 | Photographer