Jessica and Joe's Proposal at an Animal Sanctuary

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How we met: Joe and I met on a random Saturday night in Newport Beach, CA. I decided to have a girls night out and go to my favorite sushi spot with 3 of my closest friends. After dinner, we went to a  local spot for a drink. After the first 5 minutes of walking in, I had this tall, handsome man (in a terrible, blue Christmas sweater) approach me.  “Hi, how are you?” Like I said, I wanted a girls night, so I was extremely short and not engaging in conversation. “Fine.”  Joe was persistent and asked “tell me 5 things about yourself” That sparked a short, flirty conversation and some more discussion about this blue sweater. Apparently he had just come from an ugly Christmas sweater Party (fashion faux pas excused) . We found out we had a lot in common and before I could walk away, he asked for my phone number. For the rest of the weekend I kept asking my friends “do you think that hot guy in the blue sweater will call?” Come Monday, I got a phone call and we set a time for our first date.

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How he asked: About two months before we actually got engaged, my fiancé thought it would be great to “trick” me. So every weekend we were doing romantic getaways, surprise trips, concerts, picnic etc. Eventually I caught on, but I wasn’t going to complain about all of these surprises and weekend trips! Joe has mentioned to me that he wanted to go up to Monterey at the end of June. I knew this is where his parents got married, but didn’t really think anything of it. We started the long drive and Joe told me that we would be doing something very special on Saturday. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t get any hint out of him! We finally pulled into this place called Vision Quest Ranch.

Now, if you know me, I am an animal lover…always have been! My all-time favorite animal is an Elephant. I absolutely love them. When we pulled up in the drive way, I quickly noticed that this was an animal sanctuary. I was sooo excited and then Joe told me we were doing the pachyderm package, I started to immediately cry. We were able to interact with the animals and even gave the elephants a bath! I didn’t know how this day could’ve gotten any better.

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After our Elephant encounter, I found out that the property had 8 “huts” that guests could stay in overnight – and we were one of them! The huts were canvas, like a giant tent (glamping if you will) and when you sat on our balcony, you 14could see the elephants down below running around, it was incredible. We decided to open a bottle of wine and relax on the balcony. Joe started telling me how much he loved me and talking mushy gushy, but it didn’t strike me as odd because we are that couple who is very lovey.

He turned me around and I saw his hand going in his pocket and though
“OMG…is this happening?” He got down on one knee and asked for my hand in marriage.

I didn’t even look at the ring or notice he had one because I immediately started crying and grabbed his face to pull up to mine for a kiss. I was so overwhelmed with joy and excitement, it felt like a dream. Eventually I asked “is there a ring?” and when he showed it, it was more beautiful then anything I could’ve imagined!! It was definitely the best day of my life and I am so lucky to have Joe in my life!

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