What is better than wine, scenic views and time with your boo? All of that and a surprise proposal! For BSB Amanda Washington, this dreamy proposal is a reality for her and her super on point groom, Darryl Lockett (kudos to him!) This super cute HBCU bred couple recently got engaged in Virginia wine country and we are so excited to share their love story. Start off your Monday with some serious inspiration!
Veritas Vineyard & Winery in Afton, Virginia
May 9, 2015
Alma Mater of Bride:
Alma Mater of Groom:
Current City where you live:
Richmond, Virginia (bride) Indianapolis, Indiana (groom)
How did you meet?
We met at a neighborhood coffee shop.
How long have you dated?
We dated for two years before being engaged.
How did he propose?
He proposed in a wine vineyard after a morning of horseback riding.
When did you know he was the one?
Darryl and I had only known one another for a few weeks, actually! I was at SpelHouse’s homecoming in 2013 and Darryl was at his home in DC. I was in Atlanta having a great time with my Spelman sisters and, meanwhile, there was a huge thunderstorm in the DC area. Even though he had just met me, he was really concerned that my house, a quaint basement apartment, would flood if leaves clogged my front door’s drain. Despite having only known me for about three weeks, Darryl took a broom and walked six blocks over to my house and swept all of the leaves from my apartment’s door. I had no idea that Darryl was looking after my little apartment but he even sent me pictures and a message saying “didn’t want your place to flood!” It was such a sweet and thoughtful gesture- I knew that he was special and we started officially dating days as soon as I returned from Atlanta.
What is the cutest thing he has done for you without you asking?
I feel so blessed because Darryl does cute things all the time. The cutest thing that I remember him EVER doing was a very very special Valentine’s Day surprise. He told me that he was planning a very simple meal at the house. He surprised me because it was not simple at all and was in fact very thought out and cute. Darryl had arranged a fabulous surprise.
He had “made” an amazing five course dinner for me by driving to different restaurants in DC to order a single dish from each. Every one of the restaurants was special to us because each had been an establishment where he took me on our early dates. To accompany the wonderful food, he created a special menu outlining what he was serving. On the back of the menu, he wrote a love note and a paragraph for each dish. Each paragraph told a story about the dish, the exact phrase that I initially used to describe the dish, and our date night at each of the establishments as he remembered it.
What is something you love about him that has completely changed your life?
In 2013, my then 15 year-old brother contracted a strain of bacterial meningitis that resulted in limb paralysis and required immediate neurosurgery. This was especially difficult as doctors warned my family that my brother would likely never fully recover. During that year, Darryl accompanied me as I traveled every weekend to Richmond from New York, where I was a graduate student at Columbia University. For those months, Darryl would meet me on the train as it traveled southbound through DC. True to his character, Darryl came with me every single weekend and selflessly gave up his own free time to sit with my brother and family in the hospital. On my brother’s good weekends, we’d watch a few movies and on the tougher weekends, we were only able talk to my brother and pray over him and his recovery. Throughout the entire time, Darryl was consistently there, was consistently a prayer partner, and consistently reminded me that my brother was protected and would be fine- despite the doctor’s prognosis.
Darryl often recites a prayer that he learned as a child- “Dear Lord, help me to remember that nothing is going to happen to me today that you and I can’t handle together.” Darryl genuinely lives by this prayer and I love the way that he exhibits his faith and trust in God on a day to day basis. Since 2013, there have been many more occasions in which Darryl has exhibited his unbreakable faith. I admire his trust in the Lord and I love him dearly for his effortless ability to stand as a rock and a reminder to those around him that with Him there is nothing that we cannot handle.
What part of wedding planning is making you crazy?
I honestly haven’t had any part that’s made me crazy just yet. We are still in the very early stages of planning so hopefully we can maintain this very stress-free course.
What part of wedding planning can you not live without?
Thus far, my favorite part of the planning process has been dress shopping! I love going into bridal stores and seeing all of the fashions and tastes. It also doesn’t hurt that each boutique has completely pampered my guests and me.
What was your first thought the day after your engagement?
Darryl arranged for two of my best girlfriends and I to have a sleepover in a hotel not far from the proposal site. The morning that I got up, my first thought was “I’m engaged to the love of my life!” I was beaming and even texted him that exact sentence to which he replied, “I’m coming over!” I was SO excited to see Darryl again- it felt like we were walking on air! He actually slept at my parents home and drove to the hotel to meet me that morning before my girlfriends woke up. Before breakfast, we spent a few hours walking the hotel grounds and reliving how beautiful and exciting the previous day had been.
What are you looking forward to in planning your wedding? Why?
I am looking forward to all of the special women in my life- old and young- coming together to celebrate during the bridal shower! I imagine that day will be filled with great marriage stories, wonderful advice on long lasting love, and tons of fun and laughs.
Anything scare you about wedding planning?
I’m not really scared. I just want to make sure that my wedding planner and I can pull off the wedding that I envision.
What is your favorite thing about being a southern bride?
My theme is Southern Elegance! I love the opportunities to inject charm as a Southern bride. I don’t want to get too specific with the details of how I will do it but I am so excited to display my little Southern city through transportation, food, and a very historic Southern venue.
Which is more important the dress or the venue? Why?
For me, the venue is one of the most important aspects of the day. I’d like my guests to be comfortable and am really excited to entertain them in the venue that we have chosen.
Photography by Mary Stamps Bebee