I’ve been with Ben for eight years. I met him when I was 17, and he just swept me off my feet. Such a great guy.  Smart, has ambition, makes me laugh…he’s amazing.

When you’ve been with someone that long, you’d think it’d be hard to surprise someone. I always wondered if we got engaged, how he would do it and still surprise me.  Because ever since we’d been together for two or three years, people started asking. It was hard not to be on my mind, but I never over-thought it. We’ve taken everything slow. Maybe too slow at times. But it always made it so much more worth it.

On Friday (August 10, three days before  our actual anniversary) I got off work at my usual time. Almost everyone in my department had left early anyway, and yet I managed to keep myself busy even though I’d been wondering about leaving at 4:30, 4 sounded nice, but I had things to do.  I had some days that I was going to be needing to leave early in a few weeks, so I figured I’d stick it out.

After I get off work I always give Ben a call to let him know I’m on my way and on Fridays, see what we’re doing for dinner.  Although for the last month to two months, on Fridays we order a pizza from one of our favorite places in town.  I figured that’s what we were going to do and was kind of looking forward to it.

When I talked to him he said he was still working and would wrap up and be home around 6:30 to 7 p.m. He had taken the next day off, so my response was “whoo, money in your pocket!”

My plan was to clean the house because we had plans all weekend.  Well as soon as I walked in the door procrastination set in and I cleaned nothing.

As soon as he got home he said, “Hey, do you want to go downtown for dinner tonight? I’d love Noodles and Company or Yats.”

Strange for a Friday, but both sounded good to me.

While he was getting ready I asked him how his day was. He told me they finished up a job late and that he had to take a co-worker home. So I thought to myself, “Oh, he took that person home. He did have a reason for being late.  He has no special plans for me later.” I was even surprised he wanted to go downtown, especially for that long of a day.

We got ready, hopped in my car and drove to downtown. We decided on Noodles and Company–then he wanted to go walking. (I love downtown, I’d never ever ever say no.)

We started walking and ended up walking down along a canal downtown. We walked and walkd and walked, having great conversations and looking at some of the townhomes we saw were up for sale. (They were gorgeous, by the way. Including the two story with huge front windows and a deck on the roof of the house).

He asked me a few times if I wanted to sit, which I gladly said yes to because my feet had slowly but surely started to blister because of the shoes I was wearing.

On the final stop, we picked out this really cute bench. It was surrounded by trees, and the leaves that fell off of them–it was almost fall-like in the middle of summer.  (Thank you drought).  There was a dimly lit street lamp next to one of the trees and there was some green space all around us. We talked and talked for about 45 minutes. It was lovely.

Eventually though it got cold and we both were really starting to shiver. We decided we would get up and go–but before we did that he had one more thing to talk about.

He went for the reach and my heart felt like it was going to jump out of his chest. Out he pulls a ring, opens the box and gets down on a knee. Before he could even ask me anything I shook my head yes, grabbed his face and kissed him.  It was the hardest kiss, I can’t ever remember kissing him like that. Ever.

It’s hard after eight years to feel a new emotion, and there was something new in that kiss.

“He did it, this is it! This is real!” I kept thinking.

We probably kissed for like five minutes. Maybe shorter, but it felt like forever.

Then he asked me. And of course, my answer was yes.

I teared up. Not a cryer, but it was such an intense moment, my eyes just did whatever they wanted to do. But after a few minutes I just laughed and said, “We aren’t sappy, let’s not make this sappy.” We ended up sitting there for longer, having fun like two kids that just met for the first time and were head over heels for each other.

It turned out he had taken off at noon that day, came home, showered and was going to spend the afternoon looking for rings. He ended up spending more time at his parents and was worried he wouldn’t have as much time to look. He got me something temporary but he took a few pictures of me anyway. It also turned out he wanted to go to my parents to get their blessing but they weren’t there, so he had to call them. Which still, nice and traditional.

He said he left his boots at the house on accident and was worried I would noticed that he had changed shoes. But of course I’m so scatterbrained and didn’t even notice.

But my answer was yes. A very excited “yes.”

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