Samantha and Joey

Marriage Proposal Ideas in Kraft Azaela Gardens

How We Met

I met Joey four years ago on what seemed to be a normal night in Downtown Orlando. I ran into a few friends I knew from my hometown and they were out celebrating a birthday. I was catching up with one of them and we were chatting by a bar. Well there was a guy on the other side of me who kept persistently interrupting our conversation. I was perplexed at this guy thinking who is this dude?! I asked my friend if he knew him and he said, “Yeah, I know him. He’s a good guy.” We got to talking and I did think he was a good guy. Next thing you know a photographer walked up and asked if he could take a photo of us. I remember feeling a bit awkward because I had just met this guy but I figured sure why not.

I’m so grateful for the photographer capturing a photo of us the first night we met. I always joke with him that I look hesitant in the photo and he looks so excited. He asked for my phone number and I gave it to him. I didn’t think too much of it, but to my surprise he immediately texted me the next day telling me how he enjoyed our conversations the night before. I was thoroughly surprised he texted me so quickly and didn’t abide by the “Three Day Rule.” We scheduled a date for the following week and we never looked back! We often reminisce about how lucky we were to meet on that fateful evening.

We moved in together the following year and adopted our cat, Lulu and then the following year we adopted our dog, Scout. In the early stages of our relationship I kept having to pinch myself because things were going so well with Joey (and still are). I actually had a bit of anxiety the first year because I was so happy with him and I couldn’t believe I got to be with such an amazing person. All of my family and friends adore Joey and I knew things were different with him. This year I really wanted to be Moana and he was such a great sport! My family and I thought it would be really funny if he was Hei Hei and after talking it up for a year he agreed. He ended up making his own costume too! We’ve had so many wonderful adventures and we are both ready to take the next steps in our life together.

Samantha's Proposal in Kraft Azaela Gardens

Samantha and Joey's Engagement in Kraft Azaela Gardens

how they asked

Joey is a big time romantic and loves to plan sweet little surprises for us. He planned a romantic date for us the night he asked me to be his girlfriend and took me to St. Augustine for Christmas to tell me he loved me. I can’t pretend I wasn’t getting anxious waiting for him to ask me to marry him. I knew he loved planning these big surprises so I knew whatever he was planning would be worth it. I had a feeling something was up when he mentioned going to brunch in two weeks. Typically he doesn’t plan that far ahead. He also mentioned going to a park before breakfast around 9am. I knew at that point something was definitely up because he doesn’t like to wake up that early on the weekends! I should also make note that I was wearing a boot at the time because I had fractured my ankle last December and had no idea! I only had to wear the boot for about three weeks but I was not happy about it because I could feel that Joey was planning the proposal soon. I told him that I wasn’t sure if I would be up to going to a park either since I had a boot on. It’s a huge annoyance to do a lot of walking. He told me there wasn’t going to be a lot of walking around.

The morning of we get to the park and we walk directly towards the columns. We sat down and looked out towards the lake and just chatted for a little while. He was a little quiet (because he was practicing his speech in his head) and I asked him what time we were going to breakfast. He said we were going at 10:45am which I thought was a little specific and also so late considering it was only 9:30am! I was already hungry at this point because I had been up since 6am anxious for the day to start.

A family came by to take photos in the columns and I asked if they would like us to move and they said no. The mom and dad had a little boy who was throwing a temper tantrum. They eventually walked away because they couldn’t get a good family photo. A few minutes later a photographer walked up and started taking photos of the lake. She turned around and asked if we could move so she could get a shot of the columns. Joey said, “Sure! Can you take a quick photo of us first?” He was pretending to take his phone out of his pocket and he got down on one knee and she took a big step back to get the money shot. He prepared this elaborate speech and I hardly remember a word and I don’t recall saying yes! Later at breakfast because I know him I asked to take a look at the speech he had written on his phone. It was a perfect proposal. I hated the idea of the boot being in the photos but now I actually think it’s cute I still had it on. It accurately represents our quirky perfect relationship.

Can you tell how ecstatic I am at breakfast?

Special Thanks

Elle Baez
 | Photographer