Scott raised his arm and aimed... for the last red solo cup on the table. He was a regular beer pong champ at this local bar in Denver. As he looked up Lisa walked in the door. They locked eyes for a minute and Scott continued his game. He casually kept an eye on Lisa throughout the night playing it cool trying to plan out how to make his move. Lisa finally made the move. She went up to Scott and started a conversation which would lead to the beginning of their story.
Scott who was born and raised in NY(right around the corner from where I grew up). In fact, I've known Scott almost his whole life. Our families were so close that my mom use to call his mother Andi whenever she needed us kids to get in line. Scott has always been a brother to me. Scott ended up in Denver after being offered a job in civil engineering. A career that both his dad and brother are in.
Lisa is a "Dakota" girl. Born in South Dakota to be exact. She found herself in Denver after realizing her passion for Nutrition and started to pursue a degree and Master's degree in the field. I met Lisa a year before their wedding when my husband Jason and I went to Hawaii for vacation. She introduced me to two things that have become staples in my life... Brussels Sprouts and Cards Against Humanity .. .Yes, I am in my 30's and never ate Brussel Sprouts... Forgive me they seemed gross when I was a kid.
So... he's from New York... She's from South Dakota... They met in Denver... How did they end up in Hawaii? Two years ago, Scott was offered a job in Honolulu. When they got engaged (See Story below). They had a tough decision to make. Their families and friends would be traveling anyway so where should they get married? After alot of looking and back and forths. They found a place that they loved on the island of Maui at Punakea Palms. They chose the venue as it was surrounded on one side by the towering mountains of Maui and the other side by the ocean. The mountains reminded them of their first home together in Colorado.
The morning of Feb. 2nd Lisa and her girls met in their penthouse suite at Maui Kaanapali Villas. While the girls were being pampered and toasting glasses of champagne... The guys were enjoying the company of Mr. Walker or Mr. Bean or Mr. Daniels... Not entirely sure which one because the bottles were empty when I got there.
There first look took place at the resort's beach. Before all my first looks I take a moment with the couple to get them thinking about what their story has been so far. How they met, How they fell in love... I want them to get into the moment and forget everything around them. This way when they see each other for the first time they can feel the moment.
The ceremony was one of the most beautiful ceremonies I have seen in my life. The officiant or Hawaiian Holy Man (kahuna pule or kahu) brought tied in true Hawaiian cultural events into their ceremony. Including the exchanging of leis as a symbol of love. The beautifully crafted lei with its hand picked flowers and twine, carefully bonded together with love, is a reflection of your love and Aloha for one another. As you exchange these leis you will begin to weave your lei in life together with love. And now, with loving aloha (island style) please present your leis to one another with a smile and a kiss upon each other’s cheek.
Of course even with the beautiful Hawaiian traditional ceremony Scott and Lisa added their own twists. Their mother's were the flower girls for the wedding and let's say they really got into it! Scott danced down the aisle with all the confidence in the world ... The officiant blew a conch shell symbolizing the start of the ceremony at first Scott and his groomsmen started to laugh and then as he saw her the emotions overtook him. His eyes began to water. A girl he had loved for so many years would now be his wife.
After the ceremony it was time for family and friends to party! And boy did they party... One of the most important things for Lisa and Scott was that they have at least 3 hours of dance time. And let me tell you they danced the entire 3 hours!
The Proposal as told by Scott & Lisa..
Lisa loves to hike, Scott hates the requirement of waking up early on a weekend. One September weekend Scott suggested a hike, Lisa obliged knowing that it would likely end the way most other conversations that started this way did: with Scott sleeping in and no hike. But, in hopes of it actually happening Lisa delegated planning responsibilities to Scott.
Early Saturday morning, an alarm goes off. . . Scott asks if Lisa has planned the hike. Lisa reminds Scott of previous conversation. 45 mins later Scott has found the "Perfect hike to Diamond Lake, we can take Ginger, and it's only 45 miles away." Great! Packed and loaded up Scott enters the address into GPS, "you will arrive in 2 hours and 20 minutes." Lisa rolls her eyes but decides maybe GPS is wrong and the hike will be fun. 1 hour in and only 4 miles left, GPS has got to be wrong. NOPE!! Dirt road appears, with boulders the size of basketballs. Scott is driving Lisa's very low to the ground Subaru. There were definitely a few "babe, you're going to puncture a hole in something important" and "no way, I got this" along the way, but they made it.
Finally arrive to the base, Scott is in shorts and a t-shirt. Temperature is around 50 degrees and will only get colder with increase in elevation. Luckily he had an amazing girlfriend (or as his brother says, "ladyfriend") who had a long sleeve shirt and hooded sweatshirt in her trunk for him.
Half mile into the hike Miss Ginger has taken the family off the trail and into no mans land. Upon finally returning to the trail there are some gorgeous views, waterfalls, and even some friendly dogs. Lack of thorough planning finds them at a small reservoir looking for the path to Diamond Lake. Some nice man guided them to their final destination. Absolutely gorgeous (not just Scott).
In true Colorado hiking fashion Lisa brought some wine, cheese, and crackers for a summit snack. Relaxing on a rock on the edge of the lake Lisa notices Scott is not eating and very concerned about the hiking pack falling in the very shallow water. Lisa decided to take one last panoramic photo as it is so beautiful. What was at the end of that panoramic is something she was not expecting (though anticipating for a few years)!
Right there, on the rock, with Ginger, Scott was down on one knee with a very beautiful ring! The words that came out of his mouth were not what he planned (Jason warned him this may happen, though Scott refused to believe him), but they were efficient. Scott had FINALLY asked Lisa to marry him!! Lisa's response "EEEEEE! It's so shiny!" Thanks to the response, a fellow hiker came over and asked to take pictures. About a mile back down the trail Lisa acknowledged that she had not yet actually answered the question, which was YES!