Tracey and Corey

Big Sur, California



Photography | Daniel James Photography

From the Photographer

Big Sur Surprise Proposal taking place on the intimate and majestic Central Coast of California. Tracey said “yes” amidst the crashing waves and stunning mountains falling into the sea.

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

Living within a 1-mile radius of each other in Atlanta, GA for several years, you’d think we would have met in Atlanta! We actually ended up meeting by chance down in Miami, FL on vacation. I was there with some girlfriends for the 4th of July and one of my gal pals was talking to a guy that last minute decided to crash our trip with his friend Corey. By last minute, I mean that Corey’s friend bought him a plane ticket and said “We have to be at the airport in 45 minutes”. We hung out at the pool one day on the trip and split a pitcher of margaritas. We were inseparable the rest of the trip and starting dating right away once we were back home in Atlanta. The rest, as they say, is history.


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

He cooks so I don’t starve. I clean so he doesn’t live in a barn. We share a love of Marvel movies, our rescue dogs, and keep each other laughing ALL the time. We’re the best of friends.


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

This question has us scratching our heads a bit! I don’t know that either us had a single “aha! moment”, but a culmination of moments led us to what we’ve built together today.


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

Corey CRUSHED the proposal. It still gives me chills to think about it. He worked with two of my best friends and a coworker pal to figure out the best time to take me away to propose. A week before the proposal trip, he took me to dinner and gave me a red folder with a typed up itinerary inside of what I needed to pack the following weekend for a trip with “destination unknown”. I cried a ridiculous amount of happy tears at that dinner and he wasn’t even proposing in that moment! Note: Big Sur, California is my favorite place on earth. I was secretly hoping for Big Sur, but I really didn’t know where we were going!The next weekend, we were on our way and touched down in San Jose, CA. I was a bit confused by this location at first, as I’ve always flow into SF to get to Big Sur. He rented a convertible mustang and we were on our way….”somewhere an hourish away”. When we got to our destination, we were at a sweet little inn at Carmel By The Sea.


Another CA coast spot I adored, but again a little confused by the location. The next morning, he told me to get dressed “very cute” and we were going for a drive at 7am. Once we were en route, I saw signs saying we were headed toward Big Sur! We pulled over at some point and he told me it seemed like a good spot to walk down toward the water. As we were walking, I saw a solo photographer and heard some seals so I thought the photographer was maybe just there doing some scenic photography. Next thing I know, Corey is down on one knee and that solo photographer (Daniel James) was pointing his DSLR at us! After some sweet words from Corey and a big fat “YES!” from me, Daniel took some gorgeous shots of us that are now framed in our living and dining room. He is such a fabulous photographer!The rest of the day, we spent exploring the California coast with the top down of our Mustang convertible visiting some incredible spots like Post Ranch Inn and Nepenthe. That night, we had dinner at Mission Ranch and had a lovely surprise! My brother and sister in law had driven down from SF to be the first to say congrats in person. It was the best day of our lives….so far. 🙂


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

A gal I know sent me the Instagram page of a jeweler in NYC called Lauren B when Corey and I first started to talk about getting married. I was never that person that fantasized about a wedding or a ring, but I loved Lauren B’s original designs and how they built their network on social media. Corey followed the account too and we’d send each other rings back and forth in our DMs. A couple of months before he proposed, his job sent him on a trip to NYC and I got to tag along. We spent two afternoons at the Lauren B studio designing the ring together and two months later it was on my finger! It’s such a gorgeous design and I’m so glad we could design it together.


Are you excited to start planning your wedding day? Do you have any ideas in mind yet?

We are excited, but taking it slow & easy! In the midst of our planning, COVID-19 hit so we are waiting out the storm before we resume planning. Our ideas are across the map from a Tulum destination wedding to eloping! Our big day remains to be seen.