Renee and Lawrence met on October 2, 2008 at a bar in Buffalo, NY, during our senior year at the University at Buffalo. "I approached Lawrence and asked him to dance, but he said no because he didn't dance to that type of music," recalled Renee. "We ended up talking and finding out we went to rival high schools in the Bronx and grew up just 2 blocks away from each other, but had never met." The two college co-eds ended up exchanging numbers by the end of the night. Lawrence officially asked Renee to be his girlfriend on her birthday and graduation day and the happy couple have now been together for 8 years. Check out their chic engagement session, captured by Corner House Photography!
We visited the Dominican Republic for Christmas of 2015 so Lawrence could finally meet the rest of my family. During our trip we went to a restaurant with my family, that I later found out was my mom's request because her and my father used to go there. He had arranged to have placemats and napkin rings made with the words "Baby will you marry me?" One of the napkin rings was facing up and I noticed the words. When I looked over at Lawrence he got down on one knee and proposed. It all happened so fast!
From the Groom: Walk us through the behind the scenes of creating this special day
By 2015 I knew I wanted to propose but I really didn't know when, where or how to do it. It all fell into place when Renee and I decided to visit her family for the holidays and I knew I had a deadline to meet. I asked her mom for her hand and she told me about an underground restaurant called "El Meson de la Cava" in Santo Domingo that was a favorite of hers and Renee's father. While visiting her family I told her cousin, who is now one of our bridesmaids, and she helped me with decor and the dinner reservations to surprise her. Going in to the restaurant I was nervous, not expecting her to notice, but she read the question on the napkin ring before I could prepare myself! I dropped to an instant knee and looked at her, took the ring out and asked her if she would marry me.
What makes your love special?
We think what makes our love special is that we have literally grown up and matured together. The couple we are today is not the couple we were just a few years ago. Moving to Florida from New York City in 2012 was an especially difficult test on our relationship, because we were in Florida without any friends or family, and that experience could have made or broken us. Thankfully it deepened our bond and made both of us realize that there was no one else we would rather be with and we want to go through all the obstacles life throws at us together.
What was the theme of your shoot?
There wasn't really a theme for the shoot, but we wanted it to be an introduction to our beautiful venue. As soon as we saw it we fell in love and every time we see it we are just reminded of how gorgeous it is. We can't wait for our families to see it in person and feel like they have been transported to another time and place.
Were there any memorable moments during the shoot?
Lawrence suggesting different poses and backdrops for pictures was definitely memorable! I didn't think he would be as in to it as he was and the ideas he suggested came out great in the pictures.
What are you most looking forward to about your wedding?
We are most excited about being with our family and friends, most of whom still live in New York City, and dancing the night away. We both come from close knit families, and have known our wedding party most of our lives. To have everyone who has seen us grow throughout the last 8 years, and supported us through every milestone, together for the weekend will be so special. Every time our loved ones mention the wedding they always say how excited they are! That day won't only be about our union, but it is also about our village, which has made us the individuals and couple we are today, becoming one big family!