Kate and Bryan

Long Beach Island, New Jersey



Photography | Tom Russo Photography | @tomrussophotography

From the Photographer

When Kate and Bryan got engaged, they knew they wanted pictures to showcase their relationship at a place Kate holds very near and dear to her heart, Long Beach Island, NJ. Kate’s family has a house on the island about two blocks from the bay, where the gorgeous sunset photos were taken and about three blocks from the beach, where the remainder of the photos were taken. The natural sunlight and ocean waves made for one shoot that neither the couple or the photo team will ever forget.

Let’s start at the beginning. How did you two first meet?

We FIRST met in High School. However, we do not have your “typical” High School love story. Bryan is three years younger than I am and developed developed a crush on me when he was a Sophomore in High School. He thinks that I didn’t notice him in the hallways, but I did. He was shy, timid and didn’t grow into the confident man he is today at that point. Fast forward to two years ago, Bryan had moved on to play professional baseball in the minor leagues and I had moved on to become an elementary school teacher (at the school where Bryan actually went) and Bryan reached out through social media. I had been through many rough relationships and was hesitant to give ANYTHING a chance, especially someone like “him” (he was no longer a tiny, timid Sophomore, rather a very tall, confident man who had found himself through the profession of baseball. Bryan had reached out through a friend to learn more of my back story and if he “stood a chance”. She was honest and explained that I had been through a lot, and that I was busy starting a new school year, but that she thought he should “go for it”. I don’t know how romantic “sliding into DM’s” is these days, but I guess this is the world we live in now?! I told him that I wouldn’t go for dinner, but would meet for drinks. However, I ended up delaying his requests for two months.I knew Bryan worked at a specific bar (part-time) and one day my friends wanted to go in for happy hour. I refused because I did not want to chance running into him. They checked first and assured me that he was not working. What we DIDN’T think of though, was that there would be a shift change. Sure enough Bryan came walking in as I was about to put a chicken wing into my mouth and I literally dropped it in shock as he yelled, “Kate Fehn?! In MY bar?!?” I was mortified.But the rest is history.


What makes your relationship special? Tell us some things that you both value in your time together. What makes your relationship unique?

We always say that we just love being TOGETHER. We don’t care WHAT we’re doing, as long as we’re together. We are truly each other’s best friend, so we just love our time spent with each other. We love exploring, trying new restaurants and wineries and of course being stuck in a house during a pandemic. There’s no one else I’d rather be with.


How did you know your partner was the one? When did you first know this in your relationship?

I knew Bryan was the one pretty much from the beginning. I never really felt like I had to TRY with Bryan. I know that he will say the same about me as well. Our relationship has always just flowed. The first time we were out and he put his arm around me, I felt a sense of “safe” that I had never felt before. This is when I REALLY knew. I feel like I always knew and that our hearts have always been one.


Give us all the details about the proposal. How and where did it happen? Was it a surprise? What was the planning process?

We actually technically have TWO proposals. The first proposal, happened when I had a migraine. I suffer from debilitating migraines. Unfortunately, I began to have one the morning of the day that Bryan planned a huge proposal with family and friends waiting at a restaurant for us and all. He was completely stressed and went against his better judgement and decided to propose while I was half-blind, confused and in bed. Not the MOST romantic proposal, but it was still filled with love.The second proposal, was not needed, but Bryan and I both ended up ADORING it. Bryan rented out a room at our favorite local winery on New Years Eve and tricked me into thinking that we were going out for a drink before dinner. Instead I walked into a room filled with wine barrels with rose petals and votive candles as well as framed, typed pieces of our love story which led to the point where we got engaged. He also had our three favorite love songs playing on repeat as this all went on. He then got on one knee and proposed. It was the kindest, sweetest and most thoughtful proposal I have ever seen.


We’re all about the bling… Tell us all about that ring!

My ring is absolutely stunning, and I adore it. Bryan chose a gorgeous round diamond for the center which is surrounded by a halo of smaller diamonds. There are also diamonds leading half-way down the band. It is dainty, and elegant, yet gorgeous.


What are you most excited about when it comes to your wedding planning?

Being able to spend time with Bryan as much as possible and know that this is all for OUR special day. It seems so unreal, especially since most of our engagement has been during a pandemic and during a time of such unknown. We are truly blessed and cannot wait to share this special day with all of those we love and who have loved and supported us along the way!