Hannah and Nick

Hannah's Proposal in Gainey Winery

How We Met

It was our last year of college. I had transferred to UC Santa Barbara a year earlier and was still getting to know people my senior year. I had joined a sorority and one of my sorority sisters let me know that she had gotten a job at a local sandwich place, and that I should too! Only a week into the job, the bar next door to the sandwich place phoned-in an order for one of their customers. When the order was ready, I walked it over to the bar and got to talking to the bartender who was a girl I was in classes with at the time. As I was talking to her, I overheard a couple of guys talking about the UCSB waterpolo team. I had played waterpolo in high-school and intervened in their conversation (who wouldn’t want to strike up conversation with two cute waterpolo guys?!) I soon came to find out that one of the men (Nick) and I were basically from the same hometown and he had gone to high-school with my roommate. I ended up giving him my phone number that night and we have dated the 4 years since then!

How He Asked

Nick and I had talked about getting engaged and our wedding, so I suspected that it might be coming up soon. In the beginning of December, Nick told me that his parents were planning to throw a holiday party and wanted to invite all of our friends and family to the celebration! I thought this was awesome, but also maybe suspected that this was the moment he’d propose. So I bought a new dress, got my nails done, and a week before the party, the fires in Southern California burned through Ojai, CA, where Nick’s parents had rented an Airbnb for the celebration.

With the plans seemingly ruined, I totally dismissed the idea that this would be our moment. A couple weeks later, Nick said that we were going to go wine tasting with his parents instead. They had gotten a hotel room is Solvang, CA and we were going to meet them at the winery before enjoying a nice dinner at the hotel. So that day, we drove up to Gainey Winery and everything seemed perfectly normal. When we first arrived, Nick’s parents were “running late” so we decided to do a tasting by ourselves.

After our tasting, Nick suggested we grab a bottle of wine and head outside to walk around. Despite the fires, it was a gorgeous day and we were just so happy to be able to walk around in fresh air! We grabbed our bottle of wine and Nick led me to a picnic table outside overlooking the vineyards. He seemed nervous, but I didn’t think anything of it (still!) I figured he was anxiously awaiting his parents and worrying about them being a tad late. As we sat down, Nick nervously took my glass of wine from my hands and asked me to stand up. Through tears, he proceeded to read me a sweet letter he had written about our relationship. He ended the letter with : “I love you. I want to start our family, build our life, and write our story. Will you marry me?”

The whole moment was captured by one of my favorite photographers. I had told Nick for YEARS that I hoped one day when he proposed that he would have her there to capture it – and he remembered! She had been in on the plan the whole time!

Best day of my life!

Hannah and Nick's Engagement in Gainey Winery

Marriage Proposal Ideas in Gainey Winery

Special Thanks

Brooke Borough
Photographer