SK Love Stories


Our month of SK Love Stories continues with Dayana and Jason, a couple of college sweethearts who survived a long distance break-up, a sweet reunion, and a surprise oceanfront proposal. Read their romantic story and see what they are up to now, pre Santa Barbara spring wedding!

Names: Dayana Falcon and Jason Koester

Current Location: Marina Del Rey, CA

Meeting Date + Location: August 1st, 2010 in Gainesville, FL while in college at the University of Florida

Wedding date + location: May 11th 2019 in Santa Barbara, CA

How did you meet?

We met in college when we dressed up as Ninja Turtles at a Fraternity/Sorority Social.

The proposal – please tell us the story!

For my 28th Birthday, Jason bought me photo frames to match our newly beach-themed bathroom decor.  He undersold the photo shoot that came with it, claiming it was a “friend of a friend” that wanted to help us get some nice photos on the beach of us. A few weeks went by, and it was the week of our shoot. I remember one of the days I came home from work, and he started freaking out, saying the photographer wanted a Pinterest mood board for our shoot and was overwhelmed as he thought it would have been an easier process.

The day of the photo shoot came and he asked me to match him so we both wore white. We drove over to Playa Del Rey, CA, and met with Sarah Mack, the amazing photographer of both our engagement and our soon to be wedding day photos. She made us feel super comfortable. She was very conversational and asked us about how we met, how we fell in love, etc. and captured our love in the most authentic way. At sunset, she said she wanted to take a photo from a far which gave Jason a private moment for him to ask me to marry him. I remember him grabbing my hands intently and looking at me into my eyes, and saying “Dayana Falcon, I love you with all of my heart and I want to spend the rest of my life with you. Will you marry me?” As he was down on one knee, my entire body came over with emotion. I jumped back and dug my face into my hands in an utter state of shock. I then leaped into his arms kissing him and said “YES!” as I looked into his eyes. He placed the ring onto my hand, and I hugged him so intently, with tears running down my eyes. I couldn’t believe it. I was engaged and going to marry the love of my life. And then I saw the ring, and my mouth dropped open. It was stunning, so unique and custom designed for me by him. We then popped champagne on the beach and continued taking photos, celebrating this special moment in our lives.

He had pre-planned a trip for us to Palm Springs, CA, that I thought we were going to the next day and shortly after says to me, “by the way, we’re not going to Palm Springs, we’re going to Cabo, baby!” We then spent an entire weekend under the sun in Cabo, celebrating our love for each other.

When did you know that your significant other was the one? 

Dayana: After Thanksgiving Break of our college senior year, we were apart for around 6 days. I remember coming over to his house when we both got back into town and I leaped into his arms, I was so excited to see him. I had butterflies everywhere. And in that moment, I knew we had something SPECIAL.

Jason: Dayana and I dated for 1 year and a half, and due to our long-distance relationship from Los Angeles to Barcelona, Spain while I was studying abroad, we broke up for 4 months. I then moved to Miami after studying abroad, and she got relocated to New York for work. Then over the holidays later that year, we met up in Miami while she was in town and we spent a lot of time together and fell in love all over again, as if no time had passed. That’s when I knew she was the one. I let her get away, but fate had other plans and brought us back together.

What is your favorite thing about your significant other?

Dayana: One of my favorite things about him is how he looks into my eyes and makes me feel at home and safe, no matter wherever we are.

Jason: One of my favorite things about Dayana is her relentless positivity in life. It’s eternal and contagious and has helped me look at life through a more optimistic lens, and I am the biggest pessimistic you have ever met.

What made you choose the engagement ring?

Jason: I was inspired by Sofia Kaman’s natural boho look with her jewelry craftsmanship and I wanted to work with someone that could help me create something that was totally unique for Dayana, a custom designed ring where she would be the only person in the world to have the design.

I shared that Dayana and I loved to spend time in the outdoors so Sofia thought of including a leaf design on the band and intertwine the back of the band. I also wanted to make the back just as special as the front, so I asked her to add an orange sapphire to remind us of where we met and brought us together, The #GatorNation at the University of Florida. Sofia was so easy to work with and made every decision of the custom-designed ring feel easy and authentic.

Do you have any advice for planning a wedding?

We highly recommend taking your time, we did a 2-year wedding planning process, and it was life changing as we were able to work on each 2-4 things at a time and not stress about them.

Alright – what’s next for the two of you?!

Bachelor/Bachelorette parties, the wedding day, honeymoon, saving up money to buy our first home and get a 2nd dog to grow our family!

We are so happy to have been a small part of Dayana and Jason’s journey of love. Do you have an inspiring story of your own? Click here and share with us to be featured!