Anne walked into the gym with an interest in TRX and ended up with the phone number of a charming personal trainer named DJ. She was drawn to his “calm and patient energy,” and he was taken with her beautiful blue eyes—and the fact that she was a scientist.
After four years of dating, DJ prepared a picturesque North Lake Tahoe proposal under the guise of visiting their friend, Rob. They started the day with a stop at their favorite area breakfast spot and decided to go for a hike. When Anne suggested they invite Rob, DJ quickly parried, saying Rob was working and would meet up with them later. Little did she know, Rob was in on the proposal. In fact, before the hike they saw Rob in the grocery store parking lot, and though DJ chalked it up to a work errand, Rob was actually buying the celebratory bubbly they’d be enjoying within the hour.
The pair enjoyed their hike and the beautiful sunny day with a backdrop of glittering snow on the mountains, and when they reached an overlook, DJ got down on one knee. Their friend Rob not only caught the special moment in photos while hiding behind a bush, but also brought out the chilled Champagne for a toast to the newly engaged couple.
“I’ll never forget FaceTiming our family members up on that mountain,” Anne recalls. “DJ surprised me with the most beautiful private cottage right on the beach and a five-star dinner. It was absolutely perfect!”
They got to planning right away, and their wedding date just happened to coincide with the five-year anniversary of their first date—a fact they didn’t even notice until after they’d booked their venue.
DJ’s must-have list for the big day was pretty straightforward. “The only things I felt I needed to have are the people I felt were most important to me, and for my beautiful bride to have a good time and the wedding of her dreams,” he says. For Anne, that meant keeping the event local, so that her 98-year-old grandmother could be there. She also wanted to have the reception outside on a warm summer evening for dancing under the stars.
Their ceremony was a traditional and intimate Catholic mass (Anne recalls that “the church is so beautiful and hardly needed [any decorating], so we kept it very simple”), and the reception was at The Yolanda Ranch. Guests enjoyed lawn games like oversized Jenga and Connect Four, and cocktail hour included not only drinks and hors d’oeuvres but popsicles as well, on account of the summer weather.
For DJ a memory that sticks out is when they had just been introduced as Mr. and Mrs. for the first time, and they sat down at their sweetheart table at the reception. “It was a surreal feeling looking around at all our loved ones and knowing everyone was there to celebrate us,” he says. Anne fondly recalls having all of their favorite people together to celebrate, but also says that a favorite moment of hers is when she and DJ were riding to the venue together in the limo—just the two of them, having a quiet moment to toast their love.
The couple are looking forward to building their life, their legacy and their family together. “Our love and relationship has only gotten better and better throughout the years together, and I can only imagine how great it will be with a lifetime to build and work at it,” DJ says.
Anne & DJ's Wedding Resources
Grace Mun, violin
Macy's (flower crowns)
Sandals Grande St. Lucian in Saint Lucia
“You Make It Easy” by Jason Aldean
“Isn’t She Lovely” by Stevie Wonder
“Stand By Me” by Skylar Grey
“Honey Bee” by Blake Shelton
“Lady Marmalade” by Christina Aguilera
“Pony” by Ginuwine
• His and her cake: Lemon cake with raspberry buttercream
• Cupcakes: Lemon with raspberry buttercream, churro cupcakes, chocolate gluten free cupcakes, and ice cream sandwiches
White anemones, roses, succulents, eucalyptus, and agapanthus. I asked for mostly white with hints of blues and greens.
Our wedding was perfect, and we cannot say enough great things about all of our vendors; I swear we won the lottery!
• The venue was stunning and the employees were flexible, professional and easy to work with. Lindsey Maldonado is the best wedding planner, hands down!
• Amber Patterson and April Lopes-Hara were a dream team and they made me feel so beautiful in my own skin.
• Darci Terry was so fun to work with and I think she was able to capture our wedding on film so perfectly.
• Matthew Johnson was able to put together a highlight reel that brings me to tears every time I watch it, and he is such a wonderful person.
• Kathy Simeone turned The Yolanda Ranch into a dream on the day of the wedding, and I still don’t know how she did it!
• Anderson Family Catering did so much to make our day incredible and we are still getting comments about how wonderful all of the food was (the desserts looked like something out of a magazine!).
• Nabor was an absolute pleasure to work with, and really catered to our every want from a DJ.
• Lastly, if anyone is in need of a travel agent (you probably are and just don’t know it yet) I would highly recommend Kelly Westbrook. She made the whole process from research to booking to actually going so easy and fun!
We owe so much to each and every vendor; we are eternally grateful!
• Pick a budget that you have both agreed to and stick to it.
• Make a timeline and check off items on your list months in advance. This created very doable tasks for me.
• Do not buy a bunch of stuff without knowing its purpose first, and utilize what the venue/florist have to offer.
• Accept the help that friends and family offer because it will bless you in the most unexpected ways.
• Remember to enjoy the process and have fun along the way. It goes by so quickly!
I know this might sound a little cheesy, but I can’t think of one thing I would want to do differently about our wedding. It exceeded all of my hopes and dreams and felt perfect for us. I hope everyone get to experience that feeling about their wedding day!