Why leave Fido at home, when there are so many fur-friendly hotels available that will welcome your four-legged friends. It pulls on the heartstrings of every pet owner, when the time comes to wave goodbye to your little fur baby, and go on vacation without them. No matter how nice their doggy retreat is, or […]
Imagine, waking up and opening your eyes that morning, on the most anticipated day you’ve had marked in your calendar since the engagement. Even though you weren’t able to sleep much through the excitement, you feel refreshed and ready. You lay on your side to see your second most prized companion (besides your almost-spouse) is […]
You are finally married and now it’s time for your long-awaited honeymoon. As you’re basking in the joys of planning your honeymoon, you may be asking yourself “What about our fur-baby?”. If you are like many of the couples that have included their pups in their picture-pawfect wedding, you may want to include your dog […]
Love comes in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes a dog can help you choose your pawfect partner. The story of Yessica and Ray is one that you will never forget. It will warm your heart with joy. I met Ray, Yessica, and Rex in Orlando. For me, I felt I had met my long-time friends. They were both so easy to talk to, and of course, Rex won me over with just one tail wag.
Yessica and Ray met four years ago. They initially matched on a dating app. It is one of the most common ways many of our couples have met. They started talking when Ray was deployed overseas in Europe. They texted back and forth for about two and a half months until he finally came back to visit Spain. Yessica thought Ray was cat-fishing her since Ray seemed so cordial and genuine- two qualities that don’t come by so easily. Finally, they met, and it turned out he was actually real. She admits, “I didn’t have a lot of faith in these dating apps, and his story seemed strange. I was skeptical, but something fascinated me about his traveling stories.”
She was hesitant and needed a pep talk from her girlfriend to accept his invitation and meet up. Then, being paranoid, she admits she shared her location with her friends- just in case they had to come and rescue her. Ladies, who can admit to doing that too. I can raise my hand to that one. But, understandably so, they had only shared some pictures and texts.
Eager to know what happened? So Ray invited her to eat sushi on a first date. When she arrived, she said that ‘she was so happy because he was way better than what she expected. He not only looked better, but he was such a gentleman.
They talked for a while, and the minutes became hours. It was as if they had known each other for a long time.
In the many conversations they had via text, she mentioned she loved horror movies. Ray took note and right after went to see a movie. During every scary scene, he tried to hold her hand. Once they finished the film, Ray walked her to their cars. He runs to his car and pulls out a bouquet of flowers, to her surprise. Who says chivalry is dead. Yessica says, “It was such a romantic gesture, I felt like I was in an old school movie. He was definitely smooth”. What a romantic first date.
We are always curious to know. So when did Yessica and Ray know that they had found their soulmate? Ray told us, “Yessica did not hesitate and ate more than me; she even told me about the weird sushi he ordered and gave him all the fun facts about the food.’ As a big ‘foodie’ who loves to be adventurous, he knew that Yessica was one of a kind and that he could be himself around her.
For Yessica, she said that it was the flowers at the end of the date and his overall kind demeanor. He was so sweet and courteous. “He opened doors for me; our conversation was amazing. Things just felt easy from the first day. Also, he cooked for me on our 3rd or 4th date at my house. He showed up with groceries, cooked a delicious meal, and washed the dishes. I’ve never met a man that cleans after cooking. I even took a picture of him, texted my girlfriends, and told them, “wow, he just did my dishes! My kitchen is clean!”
“Ray is such a kind person; he talks to everyone and makes them feel heard. He is so well-traveled and cultured and never afraid to try new things. He’s backpacked through almost all of Asia and Europe and loves learning about other cultures, especially if it comes to food! Ray has exquisite taste; he’s very creative and sees beauty everywhere. Additionally, he loves photography and has taught me to capture many moments through his beautiful pictures.”
Everything was set in motion when they went to see their venue. Ray wanted something rustic but elegant. Yessica is the keeper of the numbers, so they visited a couple of venues that they both really liked. It was hard to choose, but it came down to what they offered and if they would have their date. They wanted to get married as close as possible to their first date, 9/30/2018. The closest Saturday to the date was 10/2/2021. Eventually, they decided to go with the Ever After Farms – Vineyard barn because it seemed perfect for that time of the year, and Yessica loves wine.
Wedding planning is hard work. There are so many decision to be made and so many vendors to choose from. When asked about Ray and Yessica’s vendors they said that Ray chose their photographer, Flor & Fauna. He knew from the get-go the type of photography he wanted. The best part was that he actually went to high school with the photographer. Luckily the photographer’s husband offers video services, so they were able to book this fantastic duo.
As you might have guessed, the food was another crucial aspect of the wedding. After all, Ray and Yessica fell in love over a plate of food. The bride explains, “Ray and I wanted to incorporate our cultures in the wedding (Philippines and Colombia), so our appetizers were Colombian, and the main courses were Filipino/Asian dishes. Never Starve Again was incredible, and Ira (the owner) worked with us on the menu, ensuring we were 1000% satisfied with the recipes used.”
Now you may be wondering who picked the other vendors. Yessica has music in her blood; after all, she is Colombian. Colombians know how to party. Boy, do they know how to party. For that reason, she really wanted a Colombian DJ. Luckily, she was able to find Press Play Entertainment.
In terms of Rex’s special wedding pet sitter, this is what Yessica had to say “And lastly, I knew I HAD TO have Rex at my wedding. There were no if’s or but’s. I searched for a long time for a service that would accompany my pup, take care of him, and put me at ease, and that’s when we met! I loved how relaxed I felt with the whole process; it was one of the most important vendors for me!”
Rex’s love and companionship have allowed Yessica to heal and move forward from her past. According to Yessica, “Rex came to me during a challenging time in my life. I was in college, broke, and I had gotten married to my high school sweetheart right after high school graduation. However, our relationship had fallen apart due to his cheating, and I had severe depression. One day I was browsing through Craigslist, and this military couple had found a litter of dogs abandoned, and they were trying to find homes for all the puppies. I wanted a dog for a long time, and on an impulse, I messaged them and told them I wanted one of the puppies. They said they only had a female left, I wanted a male, but I thought a puppy was better than no puppy. About an hour before we were supposed to meet, the couple messaged me and told me another person had decided not to keep the male puppy they originally wanted, so they asked me if I still wanted him. I, of course, said yes, and left in a hurry.’ And that, my friends, is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.” Rex allowed her to open up and fall in love again.
Yessica decided to name Rex because he reminded her of the police dog from the German series called ‘Rex”. Rex has been there for her through a lot: divorce, depression, losing her grandmother, and her parent’s move away to another country. So many painful times. Still, he always reminded her to be strong and love unconditionally.
She adds, ‘I don’t think I would be here now had it not been for that Craigslist puppy I decided to rescue back in 2013.’
When asked about the moment she knew Rex was hers, she responded, “The moment I held Rex in my arms, I knew that puppy was mine. He was so cuddly and calm. Rex gave me such a sense of security, and I wanted to make sure no one ever abandoned him. But, unfortunately, he was covered in fleas, so I bathed him and made sure he had no fleas on him, and he fell asleep right on” The rest is history.
When Yessica met Ray and Ray first came to visit. We don’t know who loved the other one first. Ray was quite obsessed with the four-legged family member and vice versa. We think that Rex sniffed out Ray’s kind heart and good cooking very fast.
Yessica and Ray’s wedding was one of our first long-distance weddings. Meeting Rex was worth the drive. He was such a sweetheart and from the first hello to our see you later. Rex had nothing but love to give. His tail wagged the entire time, and he loved all the attention. Rex reminds me of an old gentleman who is very well-mannered and polite. It was so much fun being his plus-one.
I always knew that my dog would have to be part of a wedding if I ever had a wedding. I didn’t know how or if I would ever get married again. I just know that Rex is the king of my heart, and he has been there on the sad days, so he had to be there on the happiest day. Yessica and Ray also have two other dogs. Those beautiful furbabies could not attend because their ‘paw-sonalities’ would outshine that of Rex. Plus, Rex was, after all, the first. She did make sure they were there in spirit and created a drink menu in their honor. I am sure everyone had many toasts in their name.
There are so many ways to include those furbabies that might not be fit to make it to the pawty. Check out some fun ideas of how you can include them here.
One of Yessica’s dreams is to take Rex camping with her one day. She has never been but would love to take him to the Rocky Mountains or Yosemite one day. Yessica, I hope that dream of yours comes true soon. Here are a couple of fun trips you can plan with Rex. Both Ray and Yessica love dogs. This passion is visible through their Boldcity Doggos Instagram and pet care page. They hope to open a large boarding facility one day to ensure all pets have a place to go away-from-home from home.
We wish you so much love and success in this new chapter of your lives and cannot wait to hear more about Rex’s big adventures.
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