Jasmine, a pediatric resident physician from Roanoke, and Joshuah, an attorney from Dumfries, met in November 2016 at a Young Black Professionals happy hour event in Philadelphia. Jasmine’s matron of honor encouraged her to attend the event, and once there, Josh struck up the conversation, which they say was so good, they moved it to the bar so it didn’t have to end. After chatting over a glass of cabernet and an Old Fashioned, the pair exchanged numbers. Read more about their story below.
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The first date went perfectly—they bonded over sea bass and wine while chatting about being the oldest of their siblings, and loving sour gummy worms—but on the second date, Jasmine told Josh that she’d be studying for a licensing exam (she was a second-year med school student at the time), and wouldn’t be available to keep hanging out. Still, he continued to check in, meanwhile deploying to Afghanistan as an operational law judge advocate. During his deployment, their relationship grew, and when he returned—he joining a law firm in DC and she finishing her last year of med school—things got serious.
After their May 2020 Italian vacation plans were botched by covid, Josh had to come up with a backup plan for his proposal. He decided instead to pop the question on his birthday, October 9, so he could plan an elaborate scenario without drawing suspicion. Josh enlisted a friend to help Jasmine plan “a surprise birthday party dinner” for Josh, then told Jasmine that they’d need to stop by Cira Green park on the way to the dinner to quickly meet a partner from his law firm.
“After arriving at Cira Green, we walked toward an area that looked like it was set up for a wedding with white flowers, candles and balloons,” Jasmine recalls. Walking towards the setup, Jasmine asked Josh if he thought the partner would be in that area. ”When Josh would no longer answer my questions, I started to look around and see our pictures along a wall, and [Josh’s] brother standing next to a violinist in the distance. Tears started to well up in my eyes as I walked closer and saw our parents, my brother and all of our closest friends. He then asked for my hand in marriage with the Philadelphia skyline in the background. Josh knows I have a thing for skylines, and he knew this location would be the perfect one for this occasion.” A photographer captured the entire engagement, and the couple spent the rest of the evening celebrating with loved ones. (They carried out Jasmine’s plans for the birthday party the following weekend.)
They were engaged seven months before getting married on May 22, 2021 at the Larz Anderson House in front of 50 guests (plus additional loved ones who watched the live steam). The theme was a black-tie indoor garden dinner party, and the color palette was blush and white.
Jasmine wore the second wedding dress she tried on—a mermaid style that she’d envisioned and included on her Pinterest board—and one of the couple’s favorite splurges of the day were their shoes, which they picked out together.
Josh’s professor from George Washington University’s law school officiated the ceremony, which also included three John Legend songs and personalized vows.
After a sit-down dinner, the cake included layers of funfetti filled with birthday-cake American buttercream, and a “cookie monster” flavor of chocolate cake with milk chocolate ganache, cookies-and-cream American buttercream and chocolate crunchies from Fluffy Thoughts. Occasions Catering also served strawberry shortcake parfaits, crème brulee, and chocolate-glazed heart-shaped brownies.
The cabernet with dinner and the modern, pear-infused take on the traditional Old Fashioned as a signature cocktail, both served as a nod to their first meeting. The second signature cocktail was a peach bellini.
The newlyweds gifted guests rose-gold boxes filled with a few of the couple’s favorite things: cotton-candy-flavored white macarons from Buttercream Bakeshop, a mini Pellegrino water bottle, a personalized candle, personalized hand sanitizer and a little thank you message.
Instead of traditional invitations, the couple sent save-the-dates that doubled as invitations and included a link to the wedding website, where guests could RSVP—a digital inclusion that was important to the couple who say the short planning timeline didn’t lend itself to waiting for RSVPs by mail. Additional invitations—a set for the livestream and another for the in-person event—were created digitally and texted to loved ones.
The couple, who currently split their time between Washington, DC, and Philadelphia, plan to honeymoon in Bali in October.
Photography: Liz Fogarty | Venue: Larz Anderson House | Coordinator: Simply Breathe Events | Florist: Sweet Root Village | Invitations: Minted | Caterer: Occasions Caterers | Cake: Fluffy Thoughts | Hairstylist: Rayven Owens | Makeup Artist: Arica at Already Perfect Artistry | Bride’s Attire: Mon Cheri Bridals from L&H Bridal (Philadelphia) | Bride and Groom’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Groom’s Attire: Suitsupply | Matron of Honor’s Attire: Azazie | Best Man’s Attire: Suitsupply | Music/Entertainment: Dan Goldman (ceremony music, live streaming, lighting) | Transportation: Townside Sedan | Engagement Ring and Wedding Bands: Masica Diamonds | Garter: The Garter Girl