Jillian and Neir’s engagement session at Conejo Valley Botanic Garden in Thousand Oaks, CA was so much fun! When we first started to chat about locations, they told me they wanted to shoot at a garden and we did a little research and found Conejo Valley Botanic Garden. I had never shot there before, and I’m so glad I know about it now! The view at sunset is incredible and I had so much fun during this shoot. I asked Jillian and Neir some questions to help you get to know them better. So here goes!
How did you meet?
Jillian: We met on Match.com! We were each other’s first date from Match and it didn’t take long for us to realize that we didn’t need to go on any other dates.
How long have you been together?
We met in May of 2015 and have been together ever since!
How did you know that your partner was the one?
Jillian: We had been dating for maybe 4 months. Neir was supposed to come over to my apartment after work for dinner. I called him from the store to see what he wanted. It had been a long day at work and I was having a very difficult time making a decision. After a few minutes on the phone, Neir told me to put everything I had in my basket back on the shelf and go home, and that he would pick me up for dinner. We went for Thai food and Neir ordered way too much food, which was not like him. When I asked him why, he said that I needed to have enough food for lunch the next day. He knew that the only reason I cooked dinner was so I would have food for lunch. That small gesture made me realize that he was something special. He made sure I was well taken care of, and I knew that he would always take care of me like that.
Neir: Shortly after we had made our commitment to be exclusive with one another I attended a wedding without Jill. During the ceremony, I couldn’t stop thinking about her and the liveliness she brought into my life. I thought of how she has made me more selfless than I thought ever could be. What solidified my decision to marry Jill was a month later I got to meet her family for the first time at her brother’s wedding. I met all of her extended family and realized that Jill had something that I always desired; a network of support and love and I knew that our bond would never falter.
Tell me about your proposal.
Jillian: Well, I ruined his idea for the first proposal. I love Paris and Neir wanted to go with me one day. We had a trip to Las Vegas planned for Rosh Hashana. While at home one night, I was doing work and Neir was talking about what we would do in Las Vegas. Honestly, I was barely paying attention to the conversation. Neir asked if you could go up in the Eiffel Tower at the Paris Hotel in Vegas. Not really thinking about it, I said, “Yes-but don’t propose there!”. I looked up and his face had dropped. He was going to propose there! I immediately tried to remedy the situation, but how do you come back from that. My mom told me I’d be lucky if he ever proposed. Neir made the most of it and would get down on one knee to ask me to dinner or on a walk. Real funny. And that was the end of that. Fast forward to September, we were trying to make plans with a friend of mine who was heading to Nepal for a few weeks. We met him and his girlfriend for breakfast, and his girlfriend asked if we wanted to take their dinner reservations at the Inn of the 7th Ray. She said they couldn’t make it and didn’t want to waste the reservation. It was Sunday and I didn’t really want to go, but Neir seemed excited so I agreed. Then she told me they were heading to the Self-Realization Fellowship in Malibu for some zen time before the trip. It sounded nice and we were heading up the coast already, so I agreed. We got there and started walking around the lake. We walked for maybe 5 minutes, (Neir says it felt like an hour) before we found a bench nestled up a ways from the path. Neir and I talked about how happy we were and how we would like to spend the rest of our lives together. Before I knew it, Neir was down on one knee and pulled a ring out of his pocket and I don’t remember a thing he said after that. All I remember was asking “Is this real life?!” And the rest, is history!
What are you most looking forward to about being married?
Jillian: I’m most looking forward to spending the rest of my life with Neir! I get to have the person I love most around all the time. I can’t wait to start a family with him and see what adventures lie ahead for us.
Neir: I can’t wait to learn what life has in store for us. I get to share all of our experiences together; from the honeymoon to starting a family all the way to retirement. Waking up to say good morning my love and going to sleep saying good night my love and loving Jillian every moment in between.
What was your favorite part of your engagement session?
Jillian: It definitely wasn’t the flies! But seriously, getting to spend some uninterrupted time together and focus on nothing but us and our wedding was dreamy. We loved working with you and how easy you made it. The photos were amazing, even with all the flies and pokey plants. Now we can’t wait for our wedding day!
Photographer: Jenna Rose Photography
Wedding Planner: Bride’s Bestie