Names: Mary Alice Hancock & Maria Carolina Gutierrez
Ages: Maria Gutierrez, 26; Mary Hancock, 30
Professions: Maria Gutierrez is a Pastry Chef and Mary Hancock is a Marketing Manager.
City, State: Alexandria, VA
Date of Wedding: May 2, 2020
The Big Day:
We’re having a small backyard ceremony with family and close friends, followed by a larger reception at a volunteer firehouse event hall. We love that what we’re putting into our venue goes directly into the volunteer fire department, helping them fund it since they don’t receive anything from the county.
Fortunately a lot of our friends are event professionals so a lot of our decorations and set up is going to be done by them as a gift, which has given our whole event a very unique touch. Everything from the flowers to the catering is being provided by people close to us. This also includes Maria’s wedding dress and our rings (both engagement and wedding rings are family heirlooms).
What is definitely going to wow our guests is the food. The catering will be a blend of American style food and Venezuelan cuisine. Maria and her family are all from Venezuela, and we plan to have dishes such as tequenos, arepas, and traditional sweets.
What we’re most excited about is the people. Many of the people attending were a huge part of our relationship and we’re excited to share this day with them. We’re also very excited about our families attending. Five to ten years ago, many of these family members were not on board with our sexuality and relationship. We have all come a very long way and now they cannot wait to be a part of the wedding ceremony and reception. We never actually thought this day would come, and yet here we are!
First meeting: Maria messaged Mary on Plenty of Fish, and Mary thought she was being catfished. After weeks of texting, we decided to meet in person on November 11, 2016.
First date: Korean BBQ Honey Pig in Centreville, VA. Mary ordered enough food at Honey Pig to feed seven people. Maria got to take home leftovers. Best date ever.
First kiss: Was not actually on the first date, and Maria has never let Mary forget that fact. The first kiss was on the second date, after a nice night out.
When They Knew: December 2017, after a year of dating. Maria would sporadically ask Mary “Can I keep you forever?” and Mary finally picked up on its meaning around December. We talked extensively about our futures, and what we wanted, and if those futures included each other. We decided to work toward those future goals together (moving in together, getting better jobs, etc.)
The Proposal: We technically count the December 2017 conversation as the proposal. We’re both non-traditional and prefer to talk things through. But we set our date after a good friends wedding in August of 2019, which began the wedding planning. So by our account, we’ve been engaged for nearly two years.
The Ring(s): The engagement ring was Mary’s mother’s ring, which was proposed with to Maria. The wedding bands will be given to us by Maria’s parents.
Honeymoon: We are delaying our honeymoon for two months for a two-week summer vacation in Calais, Maine. Mary’s grandma has a lake side cabin and we are going to take a long road trip through Maine with the goal of spending time in the cabin.
Looking into the Future: We look forward to many more dogs (and if Maria gets her way, a cat). We’re excited about working on our future goals together, helping each other grow and maybe down the line starting a family. We’re just excited to see what’s to come and look forward to it with confidence and enthusiasm.