Names: Jamie Leeds and Tina McDaniel
Ages: Jamie, 53; Tina, 40
City, State: Chevy Chase, MD
Date of Wedding: May 14, 2016
The Big Day: The wedding will be held at my new Italian restaurant Hank’s Pasta Bar in Alexandria, VA. It will be casually elegant. Tina’s favorite part has been saying “yes to the dress.” She bought it at Kleinfeld’s. I’m enjoying the picture taking. We got photos taken of us around Georgetown and the river. Sharing our love with our family and friends is what we most look forward to.
First meeting:We were introduced by a mutual friend at a February 15 HRC Fundraiser.
First date: February 20 at The Irongate.
First kiss: We don’t kiss and tell.
When They Knew: From the very beginning.
The Proposal: We met during the snow blizzard of 2015 in Washington D.C. Nothing, not even the shutdown of the city could keep us apart. Our first date was at The Irongate, a romantic restaurant with a fireplace blazing. We sat and talked and talked for hours. The restaurant was closing around us and we didn’t even realize it until the lights came on. Tina wore her sexy red high-heeled shoes to impress and boy did they. With all the restaurants and markets closed, I drove on the icy streets to bring Tina food from Hank’s so we could have meals together. We knew instantly that we wanted to spend our lives together. We had been planning a trip to Greece in September where I was planning to propose. I had bought the ring and had my best friend, Anna, keep it for me. But then the Marriage Equality Act passed, I thought that would be the perfect day to propose, I couldn’t wait for Greece. That night we were to meet at The Salamander Resort where I was conducting a cooking class and special dinner. I had champagne, chocolate covered strawberries and the ring ready. As I was waiting for Tina to arrive and I accidentally fell asleep. Oops! She arrived and I was so nervous, what if she said no. We were in a luxury suite, fireplace going, the setting was perfect. We were both tired and ready for bed but my adrenaline was rushing, I had to do it on that day. So I brought the ring to her and I told her that she was the love of my life and I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her, “Would you marry me?” She smiled her beautiful smile and said “yes.”
The Ring(s): Tina’s diamond engagement ring is a cushion-cut diamond in a halo setting with smaller diamonds going down the sides.
Looking into the Future: Settling into our new home and planning many travels and adventures in between Jamie’s hectic restaurant schedule.