Jessica and Adam's love story officially began on New Years Eve at church during a rescheduled Christmas comedy play in which Adam was taking part in. Initially self-conscious about his performance with Jessica sitting in the front row, he would shortly after discover her interest in him was just as palpable as his own.
Their charming and stylish engagement session began with a casual shoot on the campus grounds of Howard University, followed by a formal session at their chosen wedding venue, the beautiful Salamander Resort & Spa in Middleburg, Virginia.
Read all about Jessica and Adam's love story and romantic surprise proposal below in this endearing and elegant engagement session, beautifully captured by MunaLuchi Coterie member Rhea Whitney Photography. See the complete gallery here.
Bride & Groom: Jessica and Adam
Occupations: Jessica - non-technical project manager, Adam - management consultant.
Wedding date: Saturday, May 27, 2017
Wedding location: Salamander Resort & Spa, Middleburg, Virginia
Location of Engagement shoot: Howard University in Washington DC, and the Salamander Resort & Spa in Middleburg, Virginia.
Tell us how you met and all about the proposal. (Adam) We met on a chilly New Year’s Eve night at my church. I was starring in a rescheduled Christmas comedy that my friend Josh had insisted on inviting his sister to see. Prior to that night, Jessica and I had only exchanged a few messages on social media. Now, I was standing front and center in the role of a geeky TV news reporter in search for the perfect Christmas. To make matters worse, Jessica and Josh were seated right in the front row with a clear view of my humiliation. In order to get through the play without flubbing my lines, I knew I couldn't look Jessica's way. Afterwards, we finally met face to face in the lobby. Jessica seemed genuinely impressed with my performance and wanted to know what my plans were for the rest of the night. When I told her I was going to stay and pray in the New Year, she said she knew she had a keeper.
The Proposal: I decided to propose in Savannah, Georgia on my birthday weekend because I knew it would be the furthest thing from Jessica's mind. Moreover, she knew there was no way I'd pop the question without her family there. Saturday, April 16th was the first full day of sunshine in Savannah. I planned an entire day's worth of activities to keep us busy and mostly indoors, allowing guests to sneak in town without accidentally bumping into us. I told Jessica I had purchased tickets to a spring gala on the riverfront and we needed to get dressed up. I then arranged for a horse-drawn carriage to pick us up at our bed-and-breakfast and take us on a short tour around the Historic District ending at Whitefield Square. The carriage approached the square at just past 7 o'clock. Jessica was instantly drawn to the violinist playing under the gazebo, but was puzzled by the group of people sitting on the other side whose faces were hidden behind colorful parasols. I led her up to the gazebo which had been covered in rose petals. As we hit the landing, the parasols went up and to Jessica's astonishment it was both our families. Jessica's grandmother motioned for a hug while I stayed under the gazebo and pulled out the ring. When Jessica turned back around, she found me on bended knee and immediately burst into tears.
Describe your engagement session. For our engagement shoot, we thought what better backdrop than our wedding venue, Salamander Resort and Spa, to set to the tone for our day: warm, classic, and elegant. We were drawn to the resort's rich natural tones set against soft creams and pastels with glittering accents. It was also the perfect inspiration for our wedding photographer Rhea Whitney, who produced some amazing photographs that we'll cherish for a lifetime.
What did you do on your first date? Our first date was like something out of a movie. I picked Jessica up at her home where I met her mother for the first time. After passing my interrogation, I took her to one of my favorite restaurants on the Georgetown Waterfront. It was just after the holiday season so the restaurant was virtually empty but still glittering with festive lights. We were seated by the window with a view of a water fountain. We must have talked for hours; Jessica pretended she wasn't hungry and I pretended to be fully engaged in the conversation, but honestly, all I could think about were those green eyes staring back at me.
What's your favorite thing to do as a couple? Whether domestic or international, we definitely love to travel. On the home front, we've strolled through Central Park in Manhattan during Christmas season and snorkeled in the middle of the ocean in Key West, Florida. Abroad, we've been to London, Paris, Barcelona and Milan; and this year we're going to San Pedro, Belize for our honeymoon, and then we're off to Europe again for a tour of the Netherlands, Venice and other parts of Italy. There really is nothing more romantic than navigating foreign lands and exploring new cultures with the one you love.
How has wedding planning been so far? Thankfully, we've approached our wedding as a team and generally share the same vision for our day. So, in that sense it's been relatively stress-free. That's not to say there haven't been hick-ups along the way. In fact, we had a very unfortunate experience with our former planner early in the planning process. Still, the entire experience has taught us how to support each other through the good and the difficult times -- skills we'll definitely need as we build a life together.
Tell us what you're looking forward to most on the wedding day. We opted not to do a "first look," so we're both looking forward to finally meeting face to face at the altar. In that moment it will truly be as if time stood still.
Photographer: Rhea Whitney Photography
Makeup Artist: Monica Gray of Blessed and Beautiful
Men's Grooming: Dexter Fields of Millennium Salon
Venue: Salamander Resort & Spa, Middleburg, VA.