Last night I was able to pick up my anniversary present and I was so excited about it! You see, ever since we first got married just about ten years ago, I have wanted to get an eternity ring for our 10 year anniversary. When it came down to it, I didn't think I'd be able to get one since financially we're still chunking out quite a bit of cash for Steve's grad school (only two classes to go now!!). But then, my mom reminded me that I had a lot of jewelry bequeathed to me from my grandma, that I would probably never wear. She encouraged me to think about selling some of it. Totally brilliant. I never would've thought of it-ever. So I asked Steve if I could use the money from the jewelry to get an add-on to my wedding/engagement ring. He said, "Yes!" of course! In the end, I only ended up spending $80 total on the ring after having it sized, soldered and my old two rings re-dipped to match the new one. I'm not a major jewelry girl but for some reason, getting this ring was just so meaningful to me. And I love it. I seriously, seriously love it!
On the way home from picking up the ring, as everyone in the car was ooing and ahhhhing over how pretty it was, Steve told the boys that they would need to save their money to buy a ring for a girl someday. Isaac quickly responded, "But Dad, I know I need to do that someday but I'm not doing that just yet. Now, I'm saving for a new lego set." Caleb, in true Caleb form was just quiet, pondering the whole thing, probably thinking about how the jeweler managed to get all the rings to "stick" together since he was pretty intrigued by that. And then good ole' Joshy chimed in that what he was currently saving for was ducky bath toys and unfortunately not a ring for some girl. Steve and I were howling.
Someday they'll understand.
And with that, I give you part 11 which details how I got a ring in the first place. Here it is folks...our engagement story.
Part 11-The Proposal
It poured all the way home from Ventura. We had spent that Veteran's Day weekend with Steve's family at his Grandma's 90th birthday party a couple of hours south of San Luis Obispo. It had been a lot of fun meeting many relatives, spending time with his immediate family and honoring his Grandma. I had a lot to do, since Thanksgiving was right around the corner and once that holiday hit, finals would be right on its heels. But it was a Monday and that meant the evening would be spent at an AGO/LSM meeting.
When Steve dropped me off at my apartment, he gently asked if he could see me for dinner before the meeting. Often times we would make some sort of stellar meal of Pasta Roni before Monday night meetings so, I figured "Fettuccini Alfredo" would probably be on the menu along with some hang out time before the meeting started. Even though I was swamped, I figured I could spend a few hours with my love. I agreed, then ran inside to get out of the pouring rain.
He came to pick me up, in the old Jetta his parents had recently sold to him, around 4 pm. As I was climbing in the car, the rain stopped and a bit of sun peeked through the clouds. I noticed his guitar in the back seat and thought, "Hey, maybe we're going somewhere. How fun!" We quickly headed out of San Luis Obispo on our way out to Montana de Oro where we had our first kiss. We had been out there many times since then and it had become a special place to us. Often we'd sit up on the cliffs, watch the sunset and sing worship songs together-Steve on the guitar and me singing. We always had a great time.
This day was no different. And as we drove out there, it was as if God had stopped the rain just for us. It was an incredibly beautiful autumn day and with all of the rainfall, the air was fresh and clear. By the time we got out to the cliffs, the sun was just beginning to set. There was no one in sight. The ocean swirled below and high up, above the water, we sang and Steve played. "Father of Lights, You delight, In Your Children. Father of Lights, You delight, In Your Children. Every good and perfect gift comes from You. Every good and perfect gift comes from You. Father of Lights."
The sun was threatening to slip permanently out of sight to make room for dusk to fall and the sky was lit up in an array of colors. Oranges, purples, reds and blues were carefully painted on the horizon, as the storm had finally broken, making room for the sun to give one last hurrah to the day before being tucked away for a time. We drank in our surroundings and just kept singing, breathing in the air, basking in God's amazing creation and relishing in each other.
And then before I knew what was happening, Steve pulled a little black box out of his guitar case and got down on one knee to ask me one simple question. Would I be his wife?
"Nikki, I know the day is ending and the sun has slipped out of sight. But unlike the day, I want us to last forever. Will you marry me? Will you be my wife?"
I started jumping up and down yelling, "Yes! Yes!" over and over again, and then he slipped the beautiful ring on my finger. I felt its weight and marveled at its beauty and felt so thankful that he had chosen me. I had no idea what we would face over the years but this I knew, we would walk through life together, one step at a time, with an amazing God who would never leave us. With that hope, I knew we'd figure things out.
We stayed out at the beach until it was dark, trying to drink in every last second of daylight to marvel in the commitment that had just been made, with God as our only witness, on those beautiful cliffs overlooking the vast ocean. But when darkness began to officially win over day, we made our way back to the car, holding hands in silence, totally content with the tie that now bound us-the promise of a life together, the betrothal of two separate souls who would soon be joined as one.
On our way back to San Luis Obispo, we made some phone calls to our parents and then decided to go and grab a quick dinner before the AGO meeting. We didn't have much time so we headed to one of our favorite little spots downtown SLO, Mondeos, to get a wrap. Then we were off to the meeting where we'd officially announce our engagement to our closest friends via the AGO tradition of "chugging".
For us, it had been the perfect proposal.