Even though Juanita and Cerleston had resided in the same Miami-Dade suburb during high school they never truly connected until almost twenty years later when Cerleston reached out to Juanita via Facebook. With Juanita now living in Washington DC they dated long distance for two years until Cerleston decided to take his life where his heart already was – in DC with Juanita. There they would begin a new journey together…
Read all about Juanita and Cerleston’s love story and romantic proposal in their editorial-styled engagement session – submitted by Florida MunaLuchi Coterie Ambassador Roxanne Bellamy Events (photography by Ray Neutron).
Bride & Groom-to-be: Juanita & Cerleston
Occupations: Groom – Real Estate Investor, Bride – Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Communication Specialist.
Locations of Engagement shoot: Surrounding DC area, National Arboretum.
Tell us how you met and all about the proposal. How it started: Cerleston & Juanita had a very brief encounter in their hometown high school in 1992. Even though they lived in the same small Miami-Dade suburb they never re-encountered one another. Until, one evening in October of 2010 Cerleston reached out to Juanita (who now resides in Washington DC) via Facebook asking her to give him a call. They dated for 2 years long distance, until he decided to move to DC to be closer to Juanita and embark on the idea of starting a new life together.
The proposal: Juanita has keen female intuition. So, Cerleston knew he had to throw her off his trail. While in Miami visiting family on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving) Cerleston instructed Juanita to get her hair and nails done to prepare for his family’s get-together. This was odd; the family was “together” the night before on Thanksgiving. With everything being so blatantly obvious, Juanita suspected a proposal from Cerleston. But, Cerleston didn’t propose. Juanita wasn’t disappointed, only surprised her intuition was wrong. Juanita is never wrong. The next day, with all anticipation and guards down, they prepared to go to Cerleston’s best friend’s home to visit. Since Juanita wanted to see her own best friend, she asked if her friend was welcomed over to the house. As dinner and drinks were being served, and all friends present, Cerleston proposed the idea of everyone taking turns announcing what they’re grateful for. Juanita went first, then others. When it came time for Cerleston’s moment, he began professing all the things he was grateful for, including having Juanita in his life. As he was concluding, Cerleston got down on bended knee, then asked if Juanita would have his hand in marriage. Juanita was caught by total surprise. She said “yes!”
Describe your engagement session. We chose Ray Spears because we like pics with an editorial feel. Not the usual overly “lovey-dovey” that you see in most engagement shoots. We were hoping Ray would capture our genuine interactions without our poses being too contrived. We also wanted to capture shots in DC areas that aren’t the typical tourist attractions. Our overall theme is “BlackLove.”
What did you do on your first date? First “official” date was Prime 112 on South Beach. It was nice. The 2nd date was one of our best dates – a 3hr road trip to the Florida Keys for the weekend.
How has wedding planning been so far? Crazy… I’m pretty indecisive, so when I finally know what I want, I have to have it. That can cause stress, especially if it isn’t as accessible.