I’m just going to go out and say it. I love these two. Yes, they are adorable as all get out, and their pup is a scene-stealer for sure – but beyond all that, I can just tell these two are special. One quick glance at their descriptions (yes, the Groom-to-be sent on too) and the gorgeous images from Jeremy Chou, and you’ll surely feel the same way. Fall in love here.
From the Bride… While we’re both romantically traditional in our hearts, Doug and I didn’t meet on a chance encounter. We met in the Spring of 2011 in an untraditional way of how “boy meets girl” – through the world of online dating. I was down to the last few days of my subscription on eHarmony and was ready to throw in the towel when Doug contacted me. When I looked at his profile I remember loving the photo of him with his dog, Charlie. A man that loves dogs would be good enough for my dog, Lucky and me!
After a week of getting to know each other through email, Doug FINALLY asked me out to dinner. We decided to have our first date at a sushi restaurant in the Valley and to my surprise Doug was pretty adventurous when it came to trying real sushi (no more California Rolls for this man). I seem to remember making him try raw shrimp (along with its fried head) and proclaiming how much he loved it. Those of you who know Doug know that he hates pork, onions, mushrooms, eating chicken with the bone still in, and… shellfish! It wasn’t until after a few months of dating that I learned he hated the shrimp. Looking back, I’m impressed at his willingness to try anything once and for making me believe he LOVED every bit of it! After hours of talking over raw seafood, I knew there would be something special about us.
Funny enough, our second date didn’t happen until three weeks later because I kept canceling our dates due to work. But in true Doug fashion, he was persistent and unwilling to give up on me… and I’m glad he didn’t because we wouldn’t be here today. Our relationship may seem short to many, but I feel as if I have known Doug and his family my whole life. Doug’s caring, loving, encouraging, and he’s a man I know I can trust my heart with. He’s a man who makes me feel like “me” more and more every day. And the bonus? Lucky loves him as much as I do!
From the Groom… As I was trying to imagine the ideal place to propose, I wanted it to be something meaningful to us. Ever since I’ve known Aileen, she’s been active and physically fit. This was a positive influence on my life as, though I was fairly active, my overall fitness level wasn’t where I wanted it to be. She even convinced me to run half marathons and join her riding road bikes around Los Angeles. This was something that I really valued about our relationship. Her pushing me to be what I felt was a healthier, better person. As a result, I decided to propose on one of our rides to the top of Griffith Park.
The evening of the ride, I had already planned everything out. Mother Nature didn’t exactly cooperate, as it was hotter than usual, and I knew the climb up to the top of the moutain would not be easy. I had stuffed the ring in a plastic bag and secured to my waist hoping that she wouldn’t see this big bulge sticking out my side. The climb that evening seemed particularly challenging. I’m not sure if it was the heat or my nerves but I remember thinking, “Man I’m really earning this… I really hope she says yes.” We finally reached the top and arrived at our familiar spot. A plateau that looks out at the Hollywood sign and some of the LA valley. The sun was just setting behind the hills. I had been trying to lead into the proposal by telling Aileen how much it had meant to me that she had taken me places like the top of Griffith Park and such, but I don’t think she caught on to what I was trying to say. Finally, I set my bike down, took off my helmet, and got down on one knee. “Aileen, you’ve taken me to places I never dreamed I would have gone, just like this, since we’ve known each other. Nothing would make me happier than to spend the rest of my life having these experiences with you. Will you marry me?” She seemed a little shocked and caught off guard, but recovered and said yes fairly quickly. She didn’t even look at the ring until we got back down to the car. We called both our parents that evening and basked in the excitement of the future we were about to embark on together.
Photography: Jeremy Chou