The Story Behind Whitney & Zak's 1st Anniversary Gift

1st anniversary gift for husband

I recently had the chance recently to work with a Whitney, to create a 1st anniversary gift for her husband. While collaborating on the custom wedding invitation cufflinks for her husband Zak, it was clear how in love the two of them are. Out of curiosity, I asked her how they met. The story was so sweet, and I’m grateful Whitney let me share their love story with you here.

“The first day we met, I was hoarse and couldn't even introduce myself!”

Whitney moved to Jackson for law school in August of 2014. At the end of her first year, she spent the summer working for the legal aid department in an inner city mission. Zak also happened to be working there for the summer, in community development.

Whitney told me, “The first day we met, I was hoarse and couldn't even introduce myself! I was instantly interested in him, and I remember telling my girlfriends, “if this guy doesn't ask me out soon, I'm going to ask him out!” Unfortunately, he always left work before she did, and they didn't always cross paths at work.

One day, Zak finally asked her out by leaving the sweetest note on her car. The rest is history. The happy couple was engaged five months later and married in another six. “It all happened within a year- dating, engaged and married- and we couldn't be happier.”

couple reading wedding vows

“In typical Louisiana fashion, our wedding was on the hottest Saturday night— hotter than blazes.”

Whitney & Zac were married on July 2, 2016. It was raining a few days prior, and they were praying for it not to rain down on their outdoor wedding. Their prayers were answered! Although it didn’t rain, in typical Louisiana fashion, it was the hottest Saturday night- hotter than blazes.

The wedding was at her parents’ white plantation-style home in Marrero, Louisiana (a suburb of New Orleans.) The theme was an elegant “woodland rustic” affair. We love every emotion and detail that Jen Menard Photography captured. Jen and her husband describe their work as “honest wedding photography for the deeply in love.” Her photos capture dreamy natural greens so perfectly, and the genuine joy that comes through her photos is so refreshing!

1st wedding anniversary gift for husband


“The adage is most definitely true—when you know you know!”

I asked Whitney what she loves most about her husband. She said, “Zak is everything I am not. He is quiet and patient and gentle and kind, and I am loud and opinionated and not so gentle. The adage is most definitely true—“when you know you know!”

customized wedding invitation cufflinkscustom wedding invitation cufflinks

Whitney & Zac both followed the “paper anniversary” tradition for their 1st anniversary gifts. We created these custom wedding invitation cufflinks for her husband.

On July 2 2017, they celebrated their 1st wedding anniversary. Whitney was in the middle of an intense two-month span of studying for the Mississippi bar exam, but was able to take a day off to celebrate together. They celebrated by going to church, a visit from their in-laws, and enjoying a relaxing nap (her favorite activity!) Zak surprised her with dinner at a beautiful French restaurant, and gave her a watercolor painting of their wedding. Whitney surprised him with custom cufflinks made from their wedding invitation.

1st anniversary gift husband

“I was excited to give him the cufflinks because it's a keepsake and reminder of the day we stood before our friends, family and the Lord and joined together as one. He absolutely loved them. Such a sweet and sentimental gift.”

Thank you for sharing your love story with us! We wish you all the best for your second year of marriage!

Photographer: Jen Menard Photography

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