Tina and Massimo

Image 1 of Tina Maria and Massimo

How We Met

The love story between Massimo and I started when I was just 13 years young and he was 16. I attended a High School Award Ceremony for my best friend’s brother and Massimo happened to be one of the star players on the team. It was then at 13 that I first laid my eyes on him and had my very first boy crush. It wasn’t until I was 17 and he was 20 that I would see him again. He walked into my fathers restaurant where I work one Friday night with his then girlfriend and sat at the bar for some drinks and appetizers. My heart dropped. Was this Massimo, THE Massimo that gave me butterflies at 13 but hadn’t seen since. I was in awe of him and how he had matured and how now I could possibly be someone he would take interest in, except one major detail.. he was there with his girlfriend.

Image 2 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Naturally, young and shy I didn’t look at him once. Not a glance, not a smirk, not a hello or a wave, but simply silence. The next morning I phoned my best friend, the same best friend who brought me to that Award Ceremony 5 years prior. At the time she lived down the block and in hysterics I told her to rush to my house because I had an emergency. Arriving 5 minutes later out of breathe and startled she comes in my house to see me sitting at the computer gushing over pictures I had found of Massimo on Facebook which at that point had just become the new crave. “What’s wrong with you?!” she asked. I responded “nothing is wrong but I found him, I found that boy Massimo on Facebook and I think that this is the boy I am going to be with.”

Image 3 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 4 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Naturally, my friend thinking I had fallen and hit my head because I sounded delusional couldn’t understand what I was talking about and still to this day neither could I. It was a feeling and a moment I will never forget. Feeling as if you know so much about someone yet you know nothing at all and putting faith into the fact that they are someone you would want to get to know and spend more time with. It was truly surreal. From that moment on Massimo was a figure of my imagination. Two year’s had gone by and I knew nothing about him. He was in College, and I was trying to get through high school. He was trying to figure out his career path and I was worried about who to take to prom.

Image 5 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 6 of Tina Maria and Massimo

It always seems to amaze me that during teen years someone 3 years older can feel like a lifetime away. Then came THE night. The summer night that my friend had begged me to come to her friends house party. There I was, entering this house and as soon as I had reached the backyard our eyes had linked. There he was again, now he was 22 and I was 19. I couldn’t believe it! Trying to hold my composure that faith had brought us together again. This time, two years later I was definitely not as shy and had no problem walking right over to Massimo to say hello. As we started talking it very quickly came to my knowledge that the same girl he had come to my restaurant with 2 years ago, was now his ex girlfriend and it all just happened 2 weeks prior to this night. Was this really happening? Did we finally meet at a party after all of these years at a time in our lives where we were ready to get to know each other?

Image 7 of Tina Maria and Massimo

We linked like magic, exactly the way I had always known and felt we would. But as the saying goes, timing is everything. We had gone on a few dates and really hit if off but at this point in my life, I just wanted to have fun. Massimo was someone I really cared about so quickly not someone that I wanted to play games with, but a girl at 19 lets be real.. all we want to do is play games. I still to this day can’t believe it but we became best friends, not your typical best friends but close enough. We were the kind of friends that would go for dinner, have the best time ever, occasionally make out and the next morning, be just friends. This lasted two and a half years until one day, Massimo said enough. At this point I was 22 and he was 25 and he was sick of us.

Image 8 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 9 of Tina Maria and Massimo

He wanted to be serious and needed me to grow up and told me that he was done wasting his time on someone he never thought would want what he wanted. Sure enough, he ended our weird friend/couple relationship and it left me empty. I couldn’t believe that all this time had gone by and I wasn’t taking “us” seriously and could have been possibly missing out on a beautiful thing. This moment in my life was when I realized that he was the one. We of course over time worked things out and 4 years later at 26 and 29 years old, here we are. We are young adults starting our lives and our careers and oh yes, WE ARE GETTING MARRIED.

Image 10 of Tina Maria and Massimo

In life, you just never know. You can meet your soul mate at just 13 years old from across a room. Life happens in mysterious ways and sometimes you have to let fate take its course. Fortunately enough for Massimo and I it did. He is my best friend, my lover, my soul mate, my future husband and God willingly the father to my children and in this life, I truly don’t know what I would do with out him. We came home from Italy and had our Engagement Party 3 weeks later! The theme was The Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic and it was a white party that took place in my backyard. We definitely had a lot of pressure to pull off our Engagement party in just 3 weeks but I am an event planner for a living so we made it work and the party came out beautifully!

Image 11 of Tina Maria and Massimo

We just came back from Italy again for President’s Week and took our Engagement Shoot in La Thuille!

how they asked

My fairy tale proposal all started in August of 2016 when I traveled to Taormina, Sicily with my family. My boyfriend Massimo couldn’t join us due to work, or so that was what I was told. We arrived on a Monday afternoon and met with our British friends to begin the start of what was the trip of a lifetime. Thursday came and started off with a beautiful afternoon at the beach. I was told that evening that we would be meeting on the Rooftop at the hotel at 7pm for cocktails before dinner. As I arrived just in time the elevator doors opened to this unbelievable Rooftop overlooking Calabria, the most Southern tip of Italy in which my family originates from. As I entered I was walked to the corner of the Rooftop where there was a table beautifully set with red rose petals and a bottle of Vueve Clicquot Champagne, my favorite of course.

Image 12 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 13 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 14 of Tina Maria and Massimo

I turn around to see Massimo on one knee staring up at me with tears of joy holding one of the most beautiful rings I have ever seen.

Image 15 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 16 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Astonished, I look up to see my family across the Rooftop watching. Not only were our British friends and my immediate family there but my grandmother, aunt, two cousins and Massimo’s mother all flew to Sicily to surprise me for this special moment.

Image 17 of Tina Maria and Massimo

We then had a romantic candle lit dinner and enjoyed the rest of the evening eating, drinking and celebrating. After our stay in Sicily we went to Calabria for a whole week and celebrated with my family that lives there. I still get butterflies thinking of that magical night that was truly one to remember..

Image 18 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 19 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 20 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 21 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 22 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Image 23 of Tina Maria and Massimo

Special Thanks

Martina Calderone
 | Martina is the Manager of the NH Collection in Taormina which is the hotel we stayed at and where the Proposal took place on the Rooftop. She helped coordinate the entire affair.
MouMou Photography
 | They shot our engagement shoot in La Thuille