Jaimee and AJ

Jaimee's Proposal in Long Island Aquarium

How We Met

So eager to match-make, my cousin and AJ’s family friend who were best friends from college decided to set us up together. I had just finished my fourth year of pharmacy school and AJ had been working as an accountant. We had never met, but the match makers played messengers for a bit between us to get the 411. July 4th was the date when we first spoke and the rest was history. We would talk all day and stayed up most nights just getting to know each other. The more we talked, the more we felt like we’ve known each other our whole lives.

Our first date was when I realized that AJ thought I was out of his league, because guess what? He thought I was this tall model-looking girl and decided to wear Timberland boots to seem taller than me…in the middle of summer (I still crack up at him for doing that). With that aside, dinner at the thai restaurant was just as I hoped. We clicked right away and couldn’t wait for what the future had in store for us.

How He Asked

Fast forward three years later, AJ and I were planning out our day’s events for his friend’s engagement party, which he made a fake invitation for! The party was out east in Long Island, and we wanted to make the most out of the day. I wanted to visit the vineyard, but AJ came up with a brilliant idea to go to an aquarium before we get to the engagement party (Really?? An aquarium?? We are going to smell like fish when we get out of there). AJ insisted I would just let him plan the day since I planned our last few day adventures. He also added in that the aquarium was right next door to the venue for the engagement party, so why not? Of course I caved in and let him have it this one time.

So we dressed up for the engagement party and we obviously were the best dressed people in the aquarium, with everyone around us walking in t-shirts and shorts. AJ then asked which of the three shows I wanted to go to the aquarium- the penguin encounter, the otter show, or a sea lion show? Of course I picked the penguin encounter, because I love penguins and they’re so cute!! We waited in the main area and then the penguin trainer, Maggie came up to us and asked us if we were waiting for the penguin encounter. She excited us as she told us that we were the lucky ones that day because we were the only two who were going to get to be in the exhibit with the penguins. Maggie also asked us if we were okay with photographers being there as they were going to take pictures for the aquarium’s social media pages and of course we said yes (plus, free pictures for us- but little did I know they were the photographers AJ hired)! We got to the exhibit and Maggie began giving us fun facts about penguins and the how they’re mates for life (yes, we learned that they’re monogamous!) The penguins walked around us, we got a chance to pet the penguins (they’re SUPER soft), and of course take pictures with the penguins.

Jaimee and AJ's Engagement in Long Island Aquarium

That took all of 45 minutes and we stepped out of the exhibit into a smaller room where we got to interact with a few more penguins and take more pictures. Before we knew it the encounter was over and Maggie gave us a small thank gift of these beach balls that you can inflate. We said our thank you’s and I still had the beach balls in my hand and AJ mutters to me, “put them in your bag!” and I’m like…dude relax, I’ll put them in my bag! We walk outside with the photographers toward a fountain and Maggie runs after us saying that she forgot to give us something and to hold on a moment. So the photographer distracted us a little bit and showed us pictures. Next thing I knew, AJ held my hand and turned me towards him and we look off in the distance and see a cute penguin waddling over to us. The penguin had a sign around its neck that read, “Marry Me?” and AJ started saying some words (I was too shocked and excited that I didn’t hear what he said) and it hit me that he was proposing! Immediately I started crying- of course, tears of happiness and excitement! Before I knew it he got down on one knee and I said YES!

Special Thanks

Marco Photography
Photographer
Maggie
Planning