This is a short narrative of how I became engaged to the most wonderful woman I know.
I bought the ring back in June with some idea that I was going to propose before years end but with little clue as to when would be “the right time.” One day I accidentally let Nicole know that I had purchased a ring… my bad. Anyway, I knew at that point that we were not ready for such a commitment so I hid it away and tried not to mention it. Then one day she found it and I’m thinking, “I can’t keep any secrets can I.” But she didn’t look at it then and I knew it was still not time. After that point I moved the ring to a different location and a new box. Guess what… She found it again! This time was on accident and she opened it up not realizing what it was. She threw the ring back into my glove box (great hiding place right?) and began to cry because she felt like she ruined the surprise. I pulled the car over, got out and hugged her, gently assuring her that she had ruined nothing. Eventually, I found a successful hiding place (that or she stopped looking) and that’s when I began plotting the event. I wanted to wait till I was ready and that I felt she was ready. That point of assurance came about 2 weeks before thanksgiving break and I began sharing with select individuals that it would be soon. I packed the ring away in my stuff as I prepared for the trip down to florence and then made no mention of it except to my parents. I think I was able to surprise her because I didn’t have a clue when I was going to propose other than that I knew it was going to be over break. There was, however, one thing that I needed to happen before I popped the question.

We had to go kayaking.

Back when we were still brand new, our first official date was kayaking at her grandparents house. I knew that I wanted to repeat this for our engagement so whenever we were going to go kayaking was when I was going to ask. It turns out that day was thanksgiving day so I brought the ring with me and hid it as best I could in the folds of my hoodie (romantic garb right?). I wanted her mom to know what was going down so when nicole was out of the room I said to her mom, “Before we come back in…” and flashed the ring box to her. Now, fortunately she had been handling onions so it was easy to cover the tears up as the onion getting to her. Then my girlfriend and I were off to what seemed to Nicole as just a relaxing afternoon on the lake.

We spent about a half hour on the water and I did my best to be just as smooth as the water and not even raise a hint of suspicion. But, I can’t hide everything. When we got back to the dock I gave Nicole a hug and she said to me, “Your heart is going really fast.”
“Why do you think that is?” I said
“I don’t know, maybe it’s because I almost fell into the water a moment ago.”
Changing the subject, I said, “We should probably head back up to the house.”

So we walked up off the dock and I was about a step behind her. And I said, “Nicole.” as she turned around, I knelt down on one knee and said, “Will you marry me?” As she turned and saw me kneeling, I heard her repeating to herself over and over, “OhmyGod, OhmyGod, OhmyGod,” and she held my face in her hands. She didn’t answer at first but I had no doubt that she would soon enough.

Now, just to give you a little bit more back story. I have taken up wood carving and become fairly good at it. Some time ago, I carved a wooden heart just small enough to fit inside an old ring box. Back to the story…

I pulled out a box, still waiting upon her answer, and said, “will you accept my heart?” and I opened the box containing the wooden heart I had carved. Just when she was about to give up hope that this was an actual proposal, I pulled out the real ring and stood up and she said yes. And I put it on her finger, all the while her sister was sneaking around behind us taking pictures.

Now, We are engaged!

The beauty of this adventure is that it is the continuation of an old adventure, one in and of itself, and the beginning of an altogether new one. I cannot wait to see what great things come.