Bride: Staci Shands, 46, Book Publicist

Groom: Joseph Miceli, 57, Real Estate Developer

Married On: June 4, 2012

Wedding Location: Sedona, Arizona

Wedding Style: Rustic Elegance

When You Know, You Know
Joseph and Staci grew up 10 minutes apart from each other in New York, but their paths had never crossed. They know now that fate had something a little different in store for them. Although Staci was looking to move to Arizona, a last-minute opportunity with AmeriCorps VISTA in Albuquerque, New Mexico, seemingly fell right into her lap, so she took it. When she arrived and joined a social networking site for locals, a man named Joseph, who was also new to the area, reached out and said “hello.”

They chatted online a few times and then graduated to getting-to-know-you phone calls. For their first date, Joseph sought out a great vegan restaurant just to please Staci, who had already been on a strict organic vegan diet for over 12 years. “I was impressed that he took time to research an eatery I would get pleasure from instead of suggesting a bistro and saying, ‘Do you think you can find something to eat on the menu?’” admits Staci. “He had never eaten a vegan meal, but ate every morsel on his plate.” Joseph was equally smitten with Staci from the moment he saw her enter the restaurant, and to this day, he remembers every detail of that first date. “She had on a brown leather jacket and she strode into the restaurant with what I can only describe now as an air of unmistakable confidence — a true alpha female.”

We Have Something In Common
Joseph began to discuss the possibility of marriage just two months later. “I began hinting at marriage as an option for us,” he says. “We both were, and still are, marriage-minded and truly believed in the institution of an old-fashioned commitment that would allow us to spend the rest of our lives together.” Joseph would send Staci pictures of his dream home and hint that he wanted to share it with her. The first time he proposed, Staci didn’t think he was serious because it was so early in their relationship, so she didn’t answer him. Undeterred, Joseph vowed to ask her again — this time, with a grand gesture. On the evening of his big proposal, he made a three-course meal for Staci from scratch, then after dessert, he got down on bended knee and presented her with a plate filled with roses and a diamond ring in the middle. “I said yes, and I’m glad I did,” Staci says. The couple were married in an outdoor ceremony before family and friends just five months later. Share their love!