This Monday is made a little easier for me as I am working from home today thanks to good ole Columbus. I had a whirlwind weekend up to New York City to watch my husband help produce a live music festival in Times Square. It was one of the COOLEST things I’ve ever seen, but to say I am a bit tired is an understatement. Though, I can’t really talk as my husband got up at 2:00am on Sunday and as of writing this post at 10pm Sunday evening, he is STILL working.
We’ll keep things light with a fun coffee shop engagement in Georgetown at Baked & Wired thanks to Erin Costa Photography. Michael & Amanda have a killer love story (that they awesomely shared with me) and I just love how many SMILES there are in their DC engagement pictures!
It’s amazing how music can bring two people together..
Michael , originally from Atlanta, Georgia, and Amanda , a Jersey girl born and raised, met at college at the Catholic University of America, but it wasn’t until fall of senior year that they got to really know each other. Michael was the music director and played piano for a student-directed show called Elegies: A Song Cycle by William Finn, while Amanda, played the mother figure role of Betty Buckley. Michael says, “Her songs in the show were my favorite -and it wasn’t only because of the music; I was smitten by Amanda, her voice, and her gentle heart. We just clicked, and there was an instant connection that made me want to know her better.”
The story was heavily centered around the events and aftermath of September 11th, which made it an extremely emotional and heart wrenching show. There were points that there was not a dry eye in the theater- including the actors on stage. Amanda says, “I remember singing the lyrics to ‘Infinite Joy’, and was hoping at the time that I would find someone that gave me just that.” ‘Goodness is rewarded hope is guaranteed, laughter builds strong bones right will intercede, things you said I often find I need, indeed.. I see the world through your eyes, what’s black and white is colorized, the knowledge you most dearly prized I’m eager to employ, you said that life has infinite joy, life has infinite joy..’ She had no idea that her life was about to change.
After graduation in May of 2012, Amanda and Michael kept in touch. In December, the day after her birthday, he sent her a text that read, “How tempted would you be to come to New York City if I was there for New Years?” To which she responded, “Oh my gosh that would make my year!” to which he then responded, “Well, that’s a high bar..” Clearly she could not keep her excitement and blew her cover.
So on New Years Eve, they met in Manhattan for their first date: at a quaint French restaurant on 9th avenue by the name of Marseille, where he kissed her before midnight. ‘It was the most romantic date I had ever been on. I felt like we were the only two people in that room’, Amanda remembers. ‘He also handed me a book at the table as a a gift, a C.S. Lewis book, and on the inside cover he wrote, ‘One of my favorite quotes: “Heaven: the regions where there is only life and therefore all that is not music is silence.” I hope that your 2013 is filled with life, music, and plenty of silent spaces in between.’
Click inside for the rest of Amanda & Michael’s Washington DC engagement pictures!
And indeed it was filled with all of that and more. ‘The next day we said goodbye on the corner of Bryant Park. It was the first of many difficult partings in our long distance relationship. She whispered ‘I love you,’ and I’ve never had anyone look that way at me before.’
On December 28th, 2013, the couple headed to the Bronx to Yankee Stadium for the 2013 Rutgers/Notre Dame Pinstripe Bowl. Amanda knew how big of a Notre Dame fan Michael was, so she wanted to surprise him with tickets to the game for Christmas. And all along, Amanda had no idea that there was an even bigger surprise waiting for her that day. In fact it was in his coat pocket the whole day, and even as she tried to put her hands in his pockets, he nonchalantly grabbed her hands instead to hold them, without giving her any hint.
After the game was over, they headed into the city with plans to have dinner at the same restaurant where they had their first date nearly a year before. Since there was some time to kill beforehand, they made their way over to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, finding one of the only seats left in the way back in Mary’s Chapel. After mass was over, Michael asked if she wanted to walk to the alter to say a prayer. As they walked down the aisle, Amanda turned over her shoulder to make sure he was still there. ‘I was just checking to see him there next to me, and when I turned around, he was down on one knee with the ring in his hand. I couldn’t believe what was happening.’ ‘We had talked about getting married,’ says Amanda, ‘but I didn’t think it would happen that soon!’ Michael said, ‘she dropped to both her knees, and through tears, after a good 3 minutes, finally said, ‘Yes!’
They plan to wed this coming Valentines Day at St. Peter’s Church in Pt. Pleasant, NJ with a reception to follow at the English Manor in Ocean Township. They will both reside in DC after the wedding.