“BlackSingles.com. We were the only two white people on there.”

This morning’s Washington, DC engagement feature [submitted via Two Bright Lights!] is in one word, ah-mazing. This couple’s story will make you laugh out loud (in the literal, non-abbreviated sense) and then cry by the end, with one of the most beautiful proposal stories I have heard.

Seriously, the proposal is like something out of a movie or commercial. And their gorgeous Alexandria, Virginia engagement session, shot by one of my favorite peeps, Tim Riddick Photography, is just smokin’ hot. [See Tim’s other amazing Washington DC engagement feature by the Capitol Building here]

So, meet Joe & Kat.

And now the continuation of their hilarious “how we met” story from Kat …

When people ask Joe how we met, his response is always the same: “BlackSingles.com. We were the only two white people on there.”

That’s a lie. Funny, but a lie.

I met Joe while we were both working at Catholic University in 2008. A friend mentioned that one of the newly appointed assistant basketball coaches was quite attractive, so of course I had had my eyes peeled for weeks.

One afternoon, I heard two gentlemen outside my office discussing the pros and cons of running a 1-3-1 zone vs. a 2-3 zone. Looking hot in my Nike mesh shorts and grey hoodie, I brazenly introduced myself to the two men: Terry Sullivan, future video coordinator for the National Champion Dallas Mavericks, and Joe Reed, my future husband.

 did ya see the bird in this shot!? i love it! awesome catch Tim!

 This shot rules. Seriously – it looks like art that someone would hang in their house! Tim, your black and whites just melt my face.

Click inside for the rest of this truly beautiful, rustic Alexandria, VA engagement shoot from Tim Riddick Photography … including Joe’s AMAZING proposal story … you won’t want to miss it.

Fast forward 2.5 years. While I am still working toward building a team at Catholic University, Joe has taken up a new job as an assistant at Marymount University. For the last few years, we’ve worked through late night practices, road games, weekend trips away, and radically different schedules. Rather than dividing us, it’s made the time we have together that much more meaningful. I guess Joe must have picked up on this as well, because this summer, he planned the most perfect engagement I could have ever imagined.

 While walking along the beach in Long Island, Joe had me stop at a jetty to look for crabs, because he claimed his dad had found some earlier that week. “How romantic,” I thought to myself, “nothing says ‘love’ like a gorgeous beach and crab hunting.”

Moments later, I came across a message in a bottle- literally. Being the dense individual that I am, I loudly exclaimed, “OMG JOE- LOOK! IT’S, LIKE, A MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE!” Joe suggested that I open the bottle, but I was hesitant (refer to previous comment on density) and started walking away. Joe finally convinced me to open the bottle and read the message inside:

“I love her and that’s the beginning of everything.” -JR & KJ 7/16/11


Joe then went on to give THE speech, followed by THE knee bend, and finally asked THE question: “Will you be my wife?”

After stuttering and crying and hugging (I kind of blacked out), I looked up and saw a giant 6’6″ man dressed head-to-toe in a black jumpsuit scampering toward me. Joe’s best friend, Greg (who had been at the beach with us earlier that day) had captured the whole scene on camera- another one of my new fiance’s surprises.

Joe then said that his whole family was waiting for us at our favorite beach restaurant, and had even set up Skype with my family in Arizona. I beamed excitedly and hurried to the car- I couldn’t wait to tell my mom!

But upon arriving at the restaurant, I noticed a familiar Justin Bieber-esque haircut out of the corner of my eye. I squinted, looked closer, and put my hands to my mouth as I realized that bulbous-shaped head belonged to none other than my youngest brother, Nick (aka Petey).

That’s right- Joe had my entire family fly in from Arizona and Minnesota to celebrate our special day together.

 ^um, when I read the email from Tim that had this story in it. I got goosebumps and then I CRIED. I don’t even know these people, but the image of her family [aka imaginary people in my mind] being there, just took me over. Seriously. Well.Freaking.Done. Joe.

With the gorgeous sunset as the backdrop to our engagement day, we laughed, cried, and took photos together until twilight. As the sun disappeared behind the clouds, Joe turned to me and said, “Our perfect day is almost over!”

I smiled and replied, “Maybe, but our perfect life has just begun.”

And cue the AWWWWWWWWs. Kat might want to consider a job with Hallmark. This exchange was way better than any RomCom with Jennifer Anistan, IMO.

Congratulations Joe & Kat!! Best of luck with your wedding planning. A special thanks again to the very-talented [and seriously, all-around awesome dude] Tim Riddick Photography & Two Bright Lights for this submission!!


  1. Wow! True love, is alive and beams when partners adore their mate with what makes them happy-hearted. Kat and Joe, WOW!! You share True Love!!!!

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