After cleaning up, and getting a massage — from the same massage therapist they each went to the year before — Bert suggested they go for a walk along the Choptank River, and then they settled onto some rocks there.
"And I said, 'What took you so long?' " says Jill, with a laugh.
Bert had carried the ring in his triathlon backpack all day in anticipation.
"We had looked for it together. Jill knew exactly what she was going to get. It's a nice solitaire — nothing too flashy," he says about his Radcliffe Jewelers purchase.
The wedding: About 200 guests will first come to the ceremony at McDonogh Schools' Tagart Memorial Chapel.
"It's really meaningful to Bert because he and all the men in his family went to McDonogh," says Jill. "His grandfather was on the board of trustees and he's buried there."
It's a black and ivory wedding. The four bridesmaids and one junior bridesmaid will be wearing black silk taffeta strapless dresses from Ann Taylor. Jill doesn't want to reveal too much about the color scheme. The only thing she'll say about the bouquets her party will be carrying is that they're "small and whimsical." All the bouquets and boutonnieres are by Fleur de Lis Florist.
She's also not saying much about what she's wearing and carrying. Here's what we do know: Her ivory dress is by designer Anne Barge from Betsy Robinson Bridal. She will also be wearing jewelry by Thomas Knoell, from a trunk show at Betsy Robinson's.
Jill's brother, Jeff Carr, is her man-of-honor.
"He's my best friend," she says. Jeff will be wearing the same thing as Bert's two best men and two groomsmen — tuxedos from The Tuxedo House with black vests and black long ties.
The two flower girls will wear long ivory ballgown-style frocks, while the ring bearer will be dressed like Bert — in a tux with ivory vest and long tie.
"He's Bert's Mini-Me," says Jill.
A good friend, Virginia "Ginny" Carson will be the officiant.
"My brother and Jessica Cummings — a friend of ours — will be singing a song at the wedding," says Jill. "We're trying to convince a couple of his guy friends to play the guitar, but we're not there yet."
The reception will be held at the Elkridge Furnace Inn. The cocktail hour will be in the garden and manor house, with the seated served dinner in the tented patio area.
The couple is keeping decor close-to-the-vest and is working with Christine Rubin of Fleur de Lis on some of their ideas there.
"Elizabeth Bailey is our wedding planner," says Jill. "We just brought her on a month ago to help with last minute details and [managing] the day of."
They're still finalizing the menu, with healthy ingredients a top priority for these fitness fans.
"We're making sure we have a vegetarian option, a nice lean meat and a good fish," says Bert. "It will be gluten free. We are intolerant to gluten, so we've been going back and forth with the chef a lot."
That extends to the wedding cake.
"Just Desserts by Linda is doing a gluten-free wedding cake," says Jill. "Her specialty is gluten-free cakes...We'll have three different flavors. [The cake itself will be] this amazing soft chocolate flavor with raspberry and ganache filling. And this yummy whipped frosting that's not too sugary, but really delightful. There will also be a yellow cake with an assortment of fillings."
However, the night before, at the rehearsal dinner at McCormick & Schmick, Bert and Jill will offer a groom's cake with a triathlon theme — not gluten free — from SugarBakers Cakes.
Ken Rochon of Absolute Entertainment will be the deejay. Jennifer McMenamin is their photographer. Matt Buerhaus of Buerhaus Design is the videographer. Jill and Bert will also have another video camera available for people to record wedding day congratulations and good wishes to the couple.
Jill and Bert are excited about the welcome bags they created for out-of-towners with the help of The Pleasure of Your Company, where they also had their invitations made.
"The invitations are custom designed by Jill," says Bert with pride.
The honeymoon: "We're going to the island Moorea [near Tahiti]. It's actually a heart-shaped island, but we didn't know that until after we booked it," says Jill.
They're renting a villa on the water for a week and a half. But, don't expect to hear about them spending that time lying on the beach. Bert and Jill plan to snorkel, kayak, bike, kite surf, and paddle board — just for starters.
"We're both certified scuba divers," says Jill. "There's a black pearl farm where we can go diving...There are some great hikes on a place called Mount Belvedere. There's a pineapple plantation. Our goal is to catch our own fish and enjoy life as islanders."