A Proposal at Point Dume in Malibu with an Impromptu Engagement Session
They say 11/11 is lucky and for Courtney and Joel it really was! After connecting on Hinge in November 2019, they had their first date on November 11th. It all started when Joel was able to call it quits at work early, finding himself with time to have the most important date of his life. Fortunately, Courtney also happened to have time (after closing her textbooks) and they agreed to an impromptu first date. Courtney remembers, “We didn't think we would get to actually go out until after the holidays due to our schedules, so I knew I had to jump at this opportunity to finally see him. We ended up just walking around and talking for a couple of hours and walked over 4 miles!”
In their four years together taking long walks become one of their favorite things to do together — among watching movies, playing games, and doing other outdoor activities, like hiking and playing pickleball, of course. So naturally a walk on the beach at Point Dume, Malibu was the perfect way to pop the question. That’s right, fast forward to 10/13/2023 and Joel proposed in the most romantic of ways!
The bride-to-be tells us all about it. “Joel's parents were in town and he had texted me and asked if I wanted to grab lunch with him and his dad. Around 1:30, our friend John showed up to our apartment instead. I immediately knew something was up because I wasn't supposed to be seeing John for a few more weeks. For extra context, John is the ONLY person that knew about my first date with Joel and he's the first friend I introduced Joel to. So the second I saw John's face at our door, I knew it was proposal day.
“Once John got to the door, he handed me the first of many cards. Each card Joel had written was tied to different restaurants important to our relationship. The first one was Starbucks, because we love our coffee dates. The second card went along with my favorite sandwich in LA, followed by food from the restaurant where he asked me to be his girlfriend and empanadas from a restaurant we stopped at on our very first date.
“The cards were given to me at various times while John helped me figure out what I was going to wear. Our 3:45pm, we started the drive to Point Dume in Malibu. This was the first place that Joel told me he loves me, and ended up being the place where he asked me to spend forever with him.
“Kelsey Rinaldi ended up capturing the most breathtaking pictures during and after the proposal. Having the best moment of our lives captured by such a talented photographer is such a dream.
“Following the proposal and surprise engagement shoot, Joel ended up driving us to a place near our apartment where our friends and family were waiting for a surprise engagement party. Having our parents there, his from Chicago and mine from Maryland, meant the absolute world to me.
“The entire day was a dream and I couldn't have planned my own engagement better if I tried!”
Want to see it from Courtney’s perspective, check out her Tik Tok video !
Courtney and Joel plan on having a 2025 wedding, and while they haven’t officially started the planning process, when they do we just know they’re going to love it. Raising a glass to you, lovebirds! 🥂
Photos courtesy of Kelsey Rinaldi Photography