Jessie + Jonathan engaged


Jessie and Jonathan’s spring engagement session has my heart soaarrring! We incorporated fun, fresh blooms (thanks to the lovely Antigua Floral + Styling,) vintage bicycles, and a lemon poppyseed naked cake (created with love by Bonnie Otillio – Pink Cake Love.) I enjoyed capturing every second of Jessie and Jonathan’s chemistry and rad dance moves. Their session took place near my home in downtown Hammond. Who knew Hammond could be so tropical?


Jessie and Jonathan first met at a pro life talk in early 2011. Jessie recognized him and simply said “Hey I’m Jessie.” Then they went their separate ways. The two became best friends on a trip to Europe with friends in 2011. After two weeks, the rest of their group headed back to the states, but Jessie and Jonathan wanted to continue traveling. On a warm night in Greece, they swore that they wouldn’t let the evening of dancing (and wine) make any difference to their purely platonic relationship. They didn’t want the romanticism of Europe to fabricate any feelings, but it was too late. When Jessie and Jonathan finally did return home to New Orleans ten days later, they were inseparable. They shared a love for live music, bike riding, and dancing– as well as a strong Catholic faith and a desire for a large family. One day after mass, Jonathan asked to take Jessie to get coffee. She was certain that he would ask her to be his girlfriend. Instead, Jonathan told her that he was considering the priesthood. Unwilling to interfere with Jonathan’s discernment, but unable to stop thinking about him, Jessie tried to distance herself from him. She prayed every single day to get over him, but she was completely in love. Just as she had given up all hope, Jonathan surprised her at a show she was playing in Covington and asked her out on their first date. On December 3, 2011, Jonathan took Jessie to a beautiful dinner, and they shut the restaurant down, talking all night long. That was the first night of the rest of their lives.


Fun facts:
Jonathan and I LOVE dancing. We often go out and can be found swing dancing. I can’t tell you the countless amount of times I have been literally flipped upside down on the dance floor!
Our guilty pleasure is blasting Africa by Toto and fun 80s music with the windows down. And of course, binging on ice cream :) Sarcasm is our second language and we are ALWAYS laughing at each other’s dumb jokes! We are both super competitive so game night gets super intense with us! ;)


As lovers of carnival, the decision to leave town for Mardi Gras was not an easy one. However, with the business of life and conflicting schedules, the two decided that a vacation would do them some good. As the trip to San Francisco was approaching, Jessie began receiving little gifts and treats at her home. Although she was a bit suspicious of a proposal on the trip, her family and friends convinced her otherwise. Jonathan and Jessie enjoyed sunny California with wine tastings, tours, and food and lots of laughter. On Wednesday, February 10th they attended morning mass in Oakland before venturing to Sausalito Bay. The days’ agenda was packed with a visit to Muir Woods, a drive on Highway One, and bike rides along the bay. After the bike ride, Jonathan asked if Jessie wanted to go walk in the marina and see the sailboats. Recalling dreams of sailing around the world together, the couple excitedly took a stroll through the marina. To Jessie’s surprise, Jonathan was leading her to a sailboat for a private charter. Under the guidance of Captain Doug, they sailed through the bay right under the Golden Gate Bridge. As the sun began to set and the air grew colder, the sailboat approached a great cliff that overlook a black sand beach. It was there that Jonathan got down on two knees– the bay was a bit rough that day– and said, “Jessie, I cannot live without you.” He asked her to spend the rest of his life with him, as his wife. Through tears of joy, Jessie said yes!


On our wedding day I am most excited about vowing forever to my best friend and uniting ourselves completely to each other and to the Lord. Honestly, I’m still in shock over the gift that gave me of Jonathan and I am so excited for this adventure with him!

On our wedding day I am most excited about looking into Jessie’s eyes and promising everything. Knowing that I will forever be accountable, challenged, and held to a higher standard of what it means to be a man for her and for our family. As Heaven rejoices when we say I do, our hearts will no longer be two, but one.

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