Antonella and Mauricio are High School sweethearts and are tying the knot in June! She had a vision for her engagement session and knew she wanted a sunrise session at a special landmark in DC. When she decided on sunrise at the Lincoln Memorial, I knew I was going to be in for a treat! I love this monument and sunrise is my favorite time of day to photograph. Antonella and Mauricio hit it off in high school over their mutual love for converse sneakers, so mid way during the engagement session, they changed out of their dress shoes into matching black converse shoes! Their love was so apparent and it showed through the photos.
Leading up to the shoot, both Antonella and Mauricio and I were in our separate cars frantically searching for parking as the sun started to rise. Once I did find parking (thanks to a very kind police officer), I ran faster than ever to catch that perfect sunrise glow! When Antonella’s sister dropped them off, they were equally as winded, but we pulled it together and got to work!
Antonella looked beautiful. Her best friend and talented makeup artist, Nancy Gaona, came over to her house at 4:00am to do her makeup (talk about a loyal friend!) Antonella also brought along her sister who was there to help make sure Antonella looked perfect in every shot, and she ended up being the best assistant I ever had! The effort that Antonella and Mauricio’s friends and family put into their engagement shoot represents what a lovely and loyal family they come from and what kind of people they are in general. It was such a privilege to bear witness to such a bond.
We first saw each other during high school summer school, we both were wearing Converse sneakers, that especially caught our attention for each other. We were not taking the same class but were aware of each other’s existence. Although, we were dying to speak to each other, we would only make eye contact for an entire month, which was the duration of summer school. One day Mauricio waved at me and say “Hi” and I replied back with a “Hi” and a smile–that was the only word we exchanged. On the last day of summer school, we saw each other while riding the public bus and both of us though that that was going to be the last time we would see each other, since all the students who were taking summer classes at that specific school were assigned to different high schools. However, we both were just too nervous to speak to each other and let the opportunity pass thinking that we would never see each other again. School started after almost 2 months. Few days passed by, probably weeks, then, the unthinkable happened, we ended up finding each other again in the same high school! We coincidentally first saw each other again on a staircase of our high school while rushing to get to class in between class periods. Our adventure together begins from there because Mauricio didn’t let the opportunity pass again.
What initially brought us together was our love for music, especially that we shared the same taste in music. We love rock, classic rock, metal, power metal ballads, and more. We enjoy going to concerts. We love listening to music and singing out loud during road trips. We also really love watching tv shows and eating together. We are a huge “Friends” fan.
We have been together for almost 12 years and we’ve been through a lot. Keeping a long relationship strong is not easy, especially when the routine starts to become the biggest enemy. Indeed, it took its toll on our relationship and we were not sure what we wanted anymore. We ended our relationship after almost 9 years just to only come back together after almost 1 year apart with a stronger feeling for each other. Space and time apart is what we needed to really know we were the ONE for each other.
Mauricio got the ring he wanted and had to decide to propose either on my birthday or on Christmas day. He decided not to tell anyone, so the proposal was a surprise, not just for me, but for everyone. He proposed on my birthday, right after dinner surrounded by my family.
The ring is 14K rose gold with twisted sides and subtle champagne diamonds. Its three stone format represents our past, present, and future.
In fact, we already got married on June 6, 2019. We decided to have an intimate rustic/boho wedding with only family and closest friends. We had a beautiful outdoor ceremony and indoor reception at the Maryland National Golf Club in Middletown, Maryland. It was mostly a DIY wedding. I had to basically organized everything by myself with the help of my mother, sister, and best friends. My mom did the entire decoration for the wedding, everything including the bouquets, boutonnieres, centerpieces, floral decor, signs, etc. In the process, we all discovered my mom’s hidden talent. My friends played live music and even sang–to our surprise. It was a very emotional day for us and for our families. We were blessed to have had Maggie as our photographer or as our special guest–like we like to say. We couldn’t really have asked for more everything was perfect.