Lali and Corey

how we met

My fiancé, Corey, and I met in 2010 at just 15 years old. A church community, that my church associated with often, was throwing a luau fundraiser and had invited our church to attend. At the time I wasn’t in the mood to go but my mother insisted (thank God she did.) So I went to this luau with no intentions or expectations. At the luau the church’s youth group put on a show while dinner was being served. I remember glancing across the stage and I knew everyone up there expect one person. He stood out to me right away and I couldn’t keep my eyes off of him. I had mentally decided that I would just admire him from a far and not act on it. After the show a mutual friend came by to say hi before the luau ended and I decided to just ask who the mystery boy was. Right away the mutual friend knew I was asking because I was interested and I begged him not to say anything. Well, my begging didn’t work because he went and told Corey that someone wanted to meet him. As I’m walking to my car to meet my mom, this mutual friend stops me and says I can’t leave because he had something to show me. I was both confused and annoyed and ready to keep walking until I saw something from the corner of my eye. I glanced over and Corey was hiding behind a bush trying to get a look at me. He saw that I had caught him and he jumped out trying to act as if he wasn’t just hiding. I was mortified and had no idea what to say! He was such a gentlemen and introduced himself and shook my hand. I wanted to talk more and also redeem myself because I could feel my awkwardness oozing, but my mom was calling for me to hurry up. So we exchanged MySpace info and continued to talk from there.

how they asked

The whole thing was a huge surprise. For over a month Corey had been planning with my cousins and my mom with out me having a clue! I still have no idea how they pulled that off because I’m very nosey. Corey has always known that my dream wedding venue was the Rose Garden in the South Bay Botanical Gardens. So he and my cousins had invited my whole family and his, via Facebook invite, to the gardens for the engagement. They were all aware it was a surprise. The day before the engagement he had told me that he wanted to go to Disneyland the next day and to get my Disney stuff ready. My sister-in-law had txted me and said before we go to Disneyland, she wanted to do this photo shoot we had been planning for months. I was excited to have such an eventful day! So the morning of, Corey wakes me up and says we have to go to the mall to get me something to wear for the photo shoot and I said I already had an outfit. He told me he wanted me to have a new outfit so I said okay fine. We go to the mall and I couldn’t find anything I liked so I got some pants and called it a day. We get home and my mom is in the living room dressed all fancy and I’m like where are you going?! She says she’s going to a church event so I didn’t think much of it and said okay. The whole time I’m getting ready, Corey is pacing back and forth and would not sit down. He was making me so anxious and I thought he just didn’t want to take pictures. Then he starts rushing me saying we have to take the pictures on time so we have time to go to Disneyland so I’m like okay okay! We get to the gardens and my sister-in-law and her cousin ( best Photographer ever, Kai More Photography) meets us at the car and we walk to the entrance. As we’re walking I see my mom’s car parked front and center and I turn to Corey and asked why my mom was there?? He thought quickly and said she was there to take photos with us. It sounded like something my mom would do so I bought it. We get inside the gardens and we start to take pictures here and there making our way to my favorite garden, the Rose Garden. Our photographer places us in the middle of the gardens and starts to give me directions on how to pose for each picture. Finally she says close your eyes and pretend like your having a nice dream. After she takes the picture Corey tells me to open my eyes and turn around. I see my whole family emerge from the sides of the garden and he had gone down on one knee. My mind was blown! I couldn’t believe what was happening! I screamed and I cried and I was just so in love with him for making that moment so special. I’ll never forget it!

Special Thanks

Kai Morre Photography
 | Photography
South Coast Botanical Garden
 | Location