How They Met:
Ruben and Leslie met about 4 years ago. There was just a brief hello and not much chatting at first. Ruben proceeded to make a fool of himself before their mutual group of friends and as always, by attempting to bust a dance move that looked way cooler in his head. Time moved on and they didn't see much of each other for a while. A few years later Ruben received a friend request on Facebook. It was Leslie, so he accepted and couldn't contain his excitement eventually sending her a direct message. They'd stay up 'til 4am just having random conversations, talking about anything and everything. Although they attempted to hang out a few times, it wouldn't work out. She worked nights and he worked a 9-5. So when he was getting out of work, she had just arrived and wouldn't get out until the following day.
Ruben found Leslie easy to talk to and would look at her pictures and only wish he'd see her again soon. He even got mom's approval on the girl. Ruben and his family went out to eat after watching a movie and he decided there he'd message Leslie to tell her he liked her. She was shocked and felt butterflies in her stomach when she saw the message. Ruben cheered in the restaurant like a giddy little girl (Just kidding! Probably true though) and shared the message with the family.
Their first date was the day Ruben's brother got baptized. Leslie sat right next to him, and this was basically the first time they met in person since that one time at the party. He was a nervous wreck and couldn't even take notes, it was all chicken scratch. Afterwards they went to Olive Garden and shared stories and laughs. They were having such a great time they didn't want to end it there so decided to watch Big Hero 6. That's how they fell in love and how he became her Baymax.
After a year of dating Ruben decided there was no more time to debate. She was the one. Their families got along really well, his parents loved her and her parents loved him and they loved them back. LOVE FOR EVERYONE! It was meant to be.
Before anything, he needed her family's blessing and approval. Ruben waited patiently for Leslie to go to work and went over to her house with his father. They had a seat with her parents, brother and sister. He asked her parents for their daughter in marriage and showed them the ring. His hands were shaking and to add to his nervousness Leslie's dad added a condition: Only once he has seen the ring will he give his daughter away. It's important to mention Leslie's father is visually impaired so Ruben just laughed very nervously. Once he said yes, it was on like donkey kong. From that moment on it became a secret operation to keep her in the dark.
Ruben's initial plan was to take her to Oak Valley Vineyards and buy a romantic package that included a table out in the vineyard, surrounded by string light. They'd share a desert and champaign and celebrate their 1-year anniversary. At the end of the night he'd get down on one knee and propose. But the family card trumps the vineyard card, and the whole Salazar-Reyna bunch wanted to be present. At the last moment he decided he'd turn his house into an Italian restaurant. Ruben purchased a large piece of wood and turned it into a sign that read "Testimo Molt" which means 'I love you very much' in catalan. He finished this project at 4am the night before.
They set rose shaped candles along the floor that led out to the backyard where they had their very own table. They ordered Paissanos for dinner and Ruben's parents went to pick it up while he went to go get Leslie. Ruben's brother also played his part and dressed up as a waiter with the typical Italian mustache drawn on his face.
When Ruben arrived to her house he blindfolded her and told her where he was taking her was a surprise. He took the very loooooong way home and even took extra turns to throw her off just in case she was trying to keep up with where he was going. When they arrived to Ruben's house he opened the door and held her close to walk her to the entrance. While they walked, italian music played. She was shocked the grand reveal was at his house, but loved it.
Ruben's brother Joram was very professional and acted the part perfectly with the italian accent to match. Ruben was so nervous he could hardly eat. Even Leslie noticed his lack of hunger. After Joram brought out desert, Ruben told her their anniversary wasn't the only reason he did all this. With the ring in his hand, he dropped down to one knee and asked her to marry him. She teared up and eagerly nodded, Yes. They kissed and hugged and at that moment Ruben whispered into her ear if she wanted to tell her mother about all of this. She looked at him puzzled and confused. He lead her back inside where the whole family was waiting to congratulate her. This is where she lost it. Control of the feels -- not the ring.
These two are fun to be around and my husband and I hit it off right away from the moment we met them. Ruben and Leslie will have a November wedding with ceremony and reception at the New Braunfels Civic Center, and I can't wait to photograph the details they've been telling me about. It's going to be EPIC!