Celebrating at Turtle Bay in North Shore, Oahu is our dream wedding destination. The perfect combination of sunshine, water, rest, and relaxation. Stefano and I couldn’t ask for anything better. Thank you to everyone for taking the time off to help us celebrate our love and new life together. As we prepare for our special day, I wanted to take a step back and reflect on our love story. So here’s a deeper look into how we fell in love, starting from the very beginning.
Stefano and I met on a dating app called Tinder back in January 2017. With a Super Like and a few messages back and forth, we ended up going on our very first date. Since we were too impatient to wait for a table at R&D Kitchen we decided to wing it and ended up at Barney’s Beanery on the Santa Monica Promenade. I can’t remember what food we ordered (which is rare), but pretty sure we stayed at that table for over 3 hours. Let’s just say, it was the best date ever! We hit it off right from the start. Great conversation, great chemistry, and a lot of smiles and laughs throughout the night.
After that day we saw each other at least 3 times a week. We had the coolest halfway meet up spot called the Night Owl, where we would grab a coffee just to see each other for a few hours. Our mutual love for coffee meant that we quickly became regulars at the Philz down the street from Stefano’s apartment. Our order: 2 Dancing Waters, sweet & creamy, and 2 peanut butter sandwiches. It’s still one of our go-to places. All of our dates have been nothing short of amazing. From concerts and comedy shows, to road trips to Joshua Tree, and traveling across the country to see Stefano's family. Our time together has always been so fun and easy. We even got to a point where we started naming our dates like episodes of a TV series, just because they all felt so monumental.
So after knowing each other for only 5 months, we decided to move in together (rather quickly, we know). It felt right! His lease was up and I was ready to move to LA and start a new adventure with him. So that’s what we did! Packed up all our things and moved into our first apartment together. In the next few years we had a lot of firsts just as many couples do. Stefano and I both got tattoos together (Congruence ≅), we bungee jumped off of a bridge (Stefano swore he would never), ran a marathon (Stefano swore he would never...again lol), and got a puppy together. I think Stefano would agree that a life without Brady is now unimaginable. Once we got him, we quickly realized our need for more grass and space to go on walks, so we made a move from Santa Monica to Venice. Luckily, Stefano is a great apartment hunter so we’ve been enjoying life in a new apartment that’s only a mile from the beach and has perks like a dog park and gym. So perfect for us!
One night, all comfy at home, we decided to plan the most epic EuroTrip. After creating a full itinerary (shoutout to google spreadsheets), booking our Airbnb’s, and deciding on some must-do tourist activities, we were ready for what I would soon call our ‘Engagement Moon’. Paris, Amsterdam, Munich, and Rome - in 11 days. The first leg of our trip, Paris. I’ve been obsessed with the Eiffel Tower since I was a teenager and always thought Paris was the cutest, most romantic city ever. Our first day there was September 20, 2019. Stefano convinced me to wake up at 5 am to get an early start to exploring the city and I was so happy to be traveling that even a 5 am wake up call didn’t phase me. That day, Stefano jumped out of bed like a spring chicken. We were in Europe so I didn’t think anything of it at the time. I remember taking a video in the dark of the morning as we waited for an Uber to take us to the Eiffel Tower and was smiling ear to ear just knowing that we were together, in the city of love.
Little did I know that Stefano had a big plan that day. We hopped in our Uber and headed straight to the Eiffel Tower. Stefano and I usually start every morning with a cup of coffee so finding a cafe was at the top of my mind. When we got out of the Uber, Stefano said he looked up a place last night that he wanted to show me. Given that I love surprises, and that he is always so thoughtful in everything he does, I didn’t question it and gladly took his arm to follow.
Paris is absolutely beautiful in the morning. Very calm and peaceful while many people are still at home sleeping and shops aren’t open yet. We had a nice stroll along the river enjoying the fresh morning air and breathtaking view of the Eiffel Tower all to ourselves. I was a bit confused about where Stefano was directing us after we crossed the same bridge a couple times and made a few U-turns, but trusted that we’d get there eventually. With my head tilted back to the sky I followed along down a flight of stairs. We turned the corner, now directly along the bank of the river, where we noticed a photoshoot happening. “Wow”, I said out loud, “Look at the violinist! What a great time to do a photoshoot! And so early, what a hustle!” I asked Stefano if we should turn around, but noticed the violinist started approaching us and asked if he could play me a song. When I looked at Stefano and then saw the way he was looking back at me, I knew in that moment that this was all planned.
I stood there in pure shock as Stefano grabbed my hands and started to explain how he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. All I could do was shake my head up and down in agreement, knowing this whole time that he was the one. Thanks to the violinist playing in the background, All of Me, by John Legend will forever remind us of this perfect moment when Stefano got down on one knee and proposed. It will forever be one of the best days of our lives.
After the proposal and an amazing photo shoot, we took a walk up and down the Champ de Mars and then climbed and made our way to the very top of the Eiffel Tower where we watched the sunset and drank champagne. So romantic, I still can’t believe it. The rest of our ‘Engagement Moon’ was just as wonderful and filled with many more adventures. From the Mona Lisa and eating chocolate croissants literally every day in Paris, to Amsterdam where we walked down alleys of weed shops, went to the Heineken brewery, and even got a little insight into the Red Light District. On top of that, one full day in Germany where we had the strongest beers of our lives at Oktoberfest and then spent the last leg of our trip in Italy where we spoke to each other in Italian accents and ate pasta every meal. We spent every moment of our EuroTrip celebrating our love for each other and relishing in our engagement.
From the first day we met, Stefano and I have been best friends. I love that we have always aligned on our values and goals and that we compliment each other in so many ways. As we take this next step in life, we are excited for our family and friends to experience all the love and Aloha energy that we feel for each other. We can’t wait! #bungtobewild