As fate would have it, one day Ashley was in desperate need of a reliable plumber and some friends from work recommended a ‘Joe Russo.’ ‘He was fantastic, personable, and wouldn’t stop bragging about his son!’ Ashley remembers. “You would love him,’ the man had said. ‘I can tell. He’s nice… but not a wimp. He’s smart… but not so smart that it’s annoying.’ Almost a year later, they finally met at a mutual friends’ kid’s party. It was love at first sight. Ashley hasn’t stopped thanking Joe ever since.
Lou: ‘When I fell in love with Ashley I remember feeling like everything was going to be ok. Like I could be myself around her and she would still like me.’
Here’s their perfect Jellyfish Punta Cana wedding … enjoy!
Ashley, on the Proposal:
‘In lieu of Christmas gifts, we decided to do a fancy date night. When the night came around I was sick and didn’t feel like going anywhere. Lou INSISTED that I get out of bed and get dressed. Before we left the house, he started talking about how much he loved me. Then he kneeled down and pulled out a beautiful ring! When we got to our favourite restaurant, the whole staff knew and was congratulating us. Lou had a beautiful table set up with flowers and a bottle of champagne waiting for us! It was an amazing night.’
Fabulous Anna Nuet on hair & make-up.
Ashley: ‘This year I was lucky enough to get a job teaching first grade at John M. Marshall Elementary School in East Hampton. I also bartend and waitress at a family restaurant a few nights a week. I love being at school and waving to Lou out the window while he’s working outside. It’s great to know he’s close by!’
Lou: ‘I’m a grounds worker for the East Hampton School District. I take care of all of the maintenance and landscaping for the three schools – elementary, middle, and high school.’
From Dreams Palm Beach to Jellyfish Restaurant.
Ashley: ‘When I was four, I wanted to be the first famous Asian country western singer. My mom always had country music playing and I loved to sing along!’
Lou: ‘I wanted to be a professional baseball player for the Yankees!’
Ana Bello and her famous wedding cake!
What a great idea for the bouquet – a little less than half of Ashley’s flowers were real, so the bouquet smelled and looked amazing, but lasted much longer!
Top three things Ashley loves about Lou: ‘He makes me feel special every minute of every day! He also makes me feel safe and always knows what I’m thinking.’
Top three things Lou loves about Ashley: ‘Her ability to make me a better man, her honesty towards me, and the way she loves me.’
Ideal day together according to Ashley: ‘Cuddling all day! We would watch movies, talk, and eat delicious food!’
Ideal day together according to Lou: ‘Sleep in, nice brunch, go to the beach, and go out to a fancy dinner.’
Most romantic memory together according to Ashley: ‘We went on a vacation to Mexico for our one year anniversary. It was our first time staying in an all-inclusive resort.’
Most romantic memory together according to Lou: ‘The night I proposed.’
Val & Maria of Val’s Weddings, always a few steps ahead!
Ashley’s favourite guilty pleasure: ‘Taco Bell.’
Lou’s favourite guilty pleasure: ‘Watching The Walking Dead.’
Ashley’s favourite things to find in the fridge: ‘A Starbucks coffee frappucino that Lou has snuck in there for me.’
Lou’s favourite things to find in the fridge: ‘Leftover Chinese food.’
Ashley: ‘With Lou in my life, I’m happier! I am very goal oriented but he has taught me to slow down and enjoy the journey.’
Lou: ‘With Ashley by my side, my life is full of love, passion, and motivation.’
BRIDE & GROOM POST-WEDDING REFLECTIONS:
What did you love most about your wedding?
Ashley: ‘Jellyfish was breathtaking! The decor, the ambiance, the food, and Lou all came together to create my dream wedding.’
Lou: ‘My girl walking down the aisle.’
Any regrets? What would you have done differently if you could?
Ashley: ‘Everything was more perfect than I could’ve imagined! If anything, it would have been to find a way to stay in the Dominican Republic longer.’
Lou: ‘I don’t have any regrets about that whole day.’
Most memorable moments from the day/wedding week?
Ashley: ‘The only moment that really stands out in my mind is walking down the aisle towards Lou. I thought I’d be nervous but everything else seemed to disappear into the background.’
Lou: ‘Seeing Ashley for the first time on our wedding day.’
Comments about vendors, resorts, etc?
Ashley & Lou: ‘I really felt like we had the dream team! Everything was perfect with Clara decorating Jellyfish, Val coordinating, Katya & Rob as photographers, GT Modern Creations filming us, Anna Nuet doing hair & makeup, and Ana Bello making our cake. Everyone was amazing and so helpful. It felt like we were planning a party with old friends. We also loved Dreams Palm Beach! It was a relaxing and intimate resort for our guests to spend quality time with each other.’
Any advice for future brides/grooms?
Ashley: ‘This sounds so cliche but try to relax and just enjoy it all! The whole weekend flew by!’