Mandy and Kirk

How We Met: Kirk and I are a success story. I guess you could say we’d both met all of the wrong people and were looking for a way to find the forever kind of right- our other half. I’d moved out to San Diego from Boston in 2005 and I met Kirk in February of 2007. We got in touch on match and after numerous page-long emails getting to know each other, we met for our first date at a cute little Italian restaurant called Rafaella’s in our home burb of Pacific Beach. Rafaella’s was a magical little restaurant with tables outside under the stars and little white christmas lights everywhere, plus you could bring your own wine, which when you’re meeting someone for a “blind date” is definitely a necessity to calm the jitters! :-)

Turned out any nervousness wasn’t going to be a problem, before we knew it we had closed the restaurant down, but we weren’t ready for the night to end, so we took a moonlit walk down to the beach and sat watching the waves, sharing a bottle of wine and getting to know each other. To this day, Kirk has kept that bottle with the remnants of sand tucked in to the bottom, it’s on display in our kitchen as a reminder of that night.

how they asked: Almost 5 years to the day after that fateful first date, we were living in Scripps Ranch and Kirk asked if he could take me to dinner in Pacific Beach. Now, it NEVER rains in San Diego, but that particular day the skies decided to open up. Kirk seemed a bit perturbed by this and I couldn’t understand why – we love the rain! As we drove down to PB, he kept saying “I think we can catch the sunset down by the beach” to which I replied “baby you’re crazy, there is no sun and no shine going on right now!!”

But he was persistent and as we drove past street after street that lead down to the beach I kept pestering him about why he wasn’t just going down one of those roads. Kirk finally turned down to the beach and parked the car, I sat there in my seat, content to watch the “sunset” from the car. When he told me we needed to get out, I looked at him like he had grown 3 heads – after all, I had done my hair, and had heels on!!

He finally peeled me away from the car and got me down to the beach, to the very spot that we had sat 5 years before sharing that bottle of wine and getting to know each other. As the wind whipped and the rain sprinkled down on us, Kirk told me that he hasn’t just wanted to watch the sunset, that he had an important question to ask. As he started to tell me how much I meant to him it finally clicked what was going on!! Kirk got down on one knee and pulled out the most gorgeous ring I have ever seen and asked me if I would be his wife. I just jumped on him and said “Yes, yes yes” and started blubbering of course! When I slipped the ring on my finger it was the perfect fit, just the like the man I get to call my husband for the rest of my life!!

Photos by Southern California Wedding, Portrait and Lifestyle Photographer Natalie Bray.