How We Met: I met Lindsey 7 years ago when she came to my church youth group with her boyfriend at the time. It didn’t take long before we found ourselves in the same group of close knit friends. Over the next six years relationships changed, but our group of friends remained constant. It wasn’t until a little over a year ago that I was back home after graduating from Georgia Tech, and Lindsey was only a short drive away that we spent our first time alone together. I was having car trouble, and Lindsey offered to give me a ride to the gym. After the workout we decided to grab a bite to eat at a nearby Mexican restaurant. We had the chance to really talk. She was beautiful as always, recently single, and I started to think that maybe we could have something more than the friendship we had shared over so many years. Over the next few weeks, we seemed to hang out every day, going to the pool or grabbing dinner, I learned more about Lindsey in a few days than I had over our entire friendship. We had fun moments we had always had, but also so many deep talks where I began to fall in love with her heart and who she is. Since then, we have spent nearly every day together, moved from Georgia to Florida out on our own, and continue to learn more and more about the amazing woman I can now call my fiance.
how they asked: Lindsey’s place is the beach. When we both moved to Florida a little over a year ago, I knew I had the chance to propose to her at the place she loves most. I also wanted to do something Lindsey would never expect. So, I told Lindsey I had something special planned for her- a date night on her sweet grandma’s birthday who passed away a few years ago. Earlier in the week, I got in touch with one of Lindsey’s friends, Bobbie, to tell her that she really needed a girls day. Bobbie came by the house and picked Lindsey up early to go out and get their nails done and do a little shopping. With Lindsey out of the house the set up began. We drove down to Middle Beach, an isolated beach that’s part of the Guana Tolomato Reserve.
The path to the beach twists and turns through overgrown trees and brush. It crosses the main road and the wooden walks become a sequence of steps that lead you up and over 20 to 30 foot tall sand dunes, until the whole coast seems to be revealed all at once. I told Lindsey we had a reservation at a nicer restaurant in town at 7 pm and that I would be getting ready at the gym and picking her up on the way home. After setting up, I came back to work to shower and change into dress clothes. My good friend Stephanie arrived at our apartment, and I told Lindsey that I was there to pick her up and to come outside. When she got outside Stephanie said Lindsey was coming with her and to get in the car – no questions. Once they got to the site after about 15 minutes of awkward conversation, Stephanie pulled into the deserted parking lot, told Lindsey to get out, and pointed out a small glass bottle a little ways down the path saying “that’s for you.”
The glass bottle with a cork top held a love note telling Lindsey what I love about her heart, what else I love about her, and what I plan to do for her as we share the rest of our lives together. Lindsey began wandering down the path. A ship wheel with hanging mason jars hung from an overhanging tree like a chandelier, and mason jars of all different sizes lit the way to the beach. As Lindsey came over the dunes, she saw me standing out on the beach holding a small black box.
When Lindsey got to the sand, I met her half way, dropped to one knee, and asked her to be my wife. It was the most amazing moment of my life. She was shaking and more shocked than I could have ever imagined.
I wrapped her up in a big hug, and led her a few yards back to a 10 foot tall gray tipi surrounded by 30 to 40 mason jars with candles. The tipi held a small white antique table and two chairs, and strings of lights lit the structural poles. I had ordered fajitas and margaritas from our favorite restaurant. Once they were delivered by my cousins, we ate together and spent the next few hours on the beach all alone, watching the lights of the jars burn brighter and brighter as the sun disappeared from view, dancing together, lighting a paper lantern into the sky in memory of Lindsey’s Gram and my Dad who passed away as well, and had the best night of our lives.
Photos by: Kelly Martucci Photography