A work of love 🎨

When art classmates become soulmates

Hello again, friends! We're excited to bring you the latest issue of our newsletter, featuring a love story that’s both charming and heartwarming.

Meet Joe and Laura, a delightful couple whose journey together started as high school classmates. While not “sweethearts” back then, their connection grew when mutual friends reunited them years later. Read more to see how today’s “Love Letter” dives into their captivating story, high school impressions, adventurous trips, and surprising proposal that almost went sideways!

How did you two meet and what were your first impressions of one another?

Joe: We met in high school art class around 2009 — I was a sophomore, she was a freshman. Our school required at least two years of art, so they would mix first and second year students together and by chance, our assigned seats were next to one another for an entire year. I remember thinking she was really cute with her bangs (which she despises when she looks at past photos) and that she had this fun, bubbly energy to her. She was also one of the fastest high school sprinters at the time, which was always funny to me. To think how she has a very competitive spirit despite being a kind and generally silly person. She got mad at me every time, but when we we first started dating, every now and then I would randomly start sprinting to see if her competitive nature would kick in. She never took the bait though. I’m hopeful I’ll get her one of these days.

Laura: Joe was that cute older boy that was always so kind to me! He would ask me about all of my track races and everything else going on in my life. I knew all of those years ago that he was a really special person.

So, are you high school sweethearts?

Joe: No, we didn’t date until after college. We actually pretty much lost complete contact for many years aside from a few random run-ins here and there. My best friend from childhood, who also went to high school with me and Laura, started dating one of her best friends right after college. We came back into each other’s orbits because of that. We were different people than we were in early high school, but at our core it felt like we were our same goofy and bubbly selves. Things started to fall into place naturally for the two of us — I think being familiar with one another helped — but it felt like we were on the same page right away. The chemistry was there despite all that time apart. It helped having an excuse to see her with our two friends dating and whatnot.

What about your friends? Are they still together?

Laura: They are — they’re getting married this September! It’s pretty funny, but they are responsible for setting up like 3 or 4 couples that we know and hang out with a lot. They’re great match makers. We definitely owe them a really nice wedding gift as a congratulations and a thank you!

And what about you two? Any future plans?

Joe: We actually just got engaged a few months ago in early January. We are in the middle of planning our wedding in 2024. Well…Laura is in the middle of planning most of our wedding. She’s way better at this kind of stuff than I am, so I just help where I can.

Laura: I wish we could just get married tomorrow! I am so excited to celebrate with all of our loved ones when the day comes.

How did you propose? Were you nervous?

Joe: Definitely [nervous]. That night was chaos. It required some last minute improv and there was a near miss. A few weeks before, I could sense Laura had a pretty strong idea of when I was going to propose, so I did the only thing I could — I moved the proposal up a day. Long story short, Laura arrived home that night way quicker than she was supposed to. As she was coming around the block, her sisters were still in my apartment helping me light almost 50 candles. They sprinted out of our apartment just in time but it was way too close for comfort. I knew I wanted to answer the door like it was a normal day — to throw Laura off — but I never planned where I was going to hide the ring. So last second I stuck it in my waistband behind my back. Then, I was like “holy sh*t, what if she hugs me and feels the box!” So on the spot I opened the door and was like, “Our TV just fell off of the wall mount.” She panicked and ran to the living room, where she was greeted with all of the candles and flowers.

Laura: It was perfect! We had a party and celebrated with all of our friends that weekend.

Is there a memory or moment that sticks out in your relationship?

Laura: Our first trip together as a couple was when we took a roadtrip down the coast of California and stopped in 6 different cities. It was pretty early into our relationship and It was the first time that we traveled together. I really loved that first vacation/travel moment with him and I had a great promising feeling about our relationship from that time on.

Joe: Last summer we took an incredible trip to the South of France. I got really bogged down with work when we were planning the getaway and Laura took care of the entire thing. I always joke that it was the best surprise vacation ever because I really didn’t know any of the small details. She did an incredible job and it just showed how much she cares, and also showed she’s willing to take on things if I’m struggling, which means a lot. Long story short, the trip ended with us seeing the Monaco Grand Prix (formula 1 race). It was an incredible, once-in-a-lifetime moment, but I think my favorite part is when we got to Monaco and it was pouring rain. I think we were stuck out in the rain for close to two hours. Luckily, the night before, Laura made us buy oversized ponchos in case there was rain and it turned out she made the right decision. Again, she’s always prepared! At one point I was pretty down that it was raining during the one and probably only time we will ever see that race, but something about having that ridiculous, imperfect moment together is a memory I’ll never forget. We couldn’t stop laughing the entire time. I still have the wrinkled (once soggy) tickets. I definitely plan on showing those to our kids one day.

Joe and Laura in their ponchos. Peep Joe’s soaked glasses.

What has made your relationship successful?

Joe: Communication is probably the most important. Something as simple as letting the other person know if you had a really long or hard day at work. It doesn’t sound like much, but it’s helpful when we set those expectations. If Laura had a long work day, I know to take care of dinner or clean up the apartment. Another important one is not taking life too seriously. We definitely make sure to make each other laugh and try to roll with the punches as much as we can.

Laura: Joe and I are very different but share the same values. We balance each other out with our differing personalities and I think it makes for a really successful relationship. He makes sure we’re on time, and I make sure we have a great time!

Meet Cutes NYC: Joe and Laura’s love story is a reminder that sometimes the best relationships are built on a foundation of friendship, shared values, and the simple joys of life. Whether it’s an unexpected rain during a vacation, or being each other’s support system through the daily grind, they exemplify that love is in the details. Their journey inspires us to cherish the moments, embrace laughter, and build relationships that are based on understanding and mutual support.

"I believe that love and laughter can only happen when one person takes the time to think about what would cause the other person to feel good."

Yakov Smirnoff

Have road trips or vacations played a role in bonding with your partner? ✈️

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