If you read my last post, or already know Brady and I, you'll understand the title. If you haven't read the last post, check it out here.
I have always loved hearing engagements stories, and it's been so fun to always think about what mine would be like. But I could never think up an engagement that was as perfect as the one I finally got.
Brady and I went ring shopping together, and since we are together ALL the time, I knew when he went to pick it up. He knew it would be futile trying to hide that from me. He got the ring Thursday, and I was so antsy! I just wanted to make it official! (And get that diamond on my hand!) Before he had even picked it up I was asking him if he knew when he was going to do it. He didn't. He kept saying that he'd maybe just make me wait for a couple weeks. Punk.
So Thursday came and went. Friday morning he texted about "date night." We have decided that we wanted to start getting into the habit of having Friday night (or Saturday if something came up) be our date night so that down the road when we have kids and life gets busier we will still have time for each other alone at least once a week.
We chatted about what to do and Brady actually had a plan. I'm not saying he never has plans for dates, but it is not common. He wanted to go hiking up Big Cottonwood Canyon near Salt Lake, where we live. He also wanted to pack Chipotle up there for a picnic. The first summer we dated we went to Chipotle on almost a weekly basis. He is the reason I now crave Chipotle.
So that evening we stopped at Chipotle, packed it in our backpack and drove up the canyon. It was beautiful. The mountains are such an amazing sight. We found the trail that had been suggested to Brady by a co-worker and started our hike. We both thought it was going to be an easy, 1-mile hike. Not a big deal at all. Right? Except that neither of us ever exercise and the trail decided to turn to a 90 degree slope! (Maybe I'm exaggerating, but it makes me feel better about my out-of-shape-ness).
During the hike Brady, who was walking behind me on the narrow trail, said, "Tell me a story." Again, this is sort of going back to a few years ago when we were long distance and would never want to hang up the phone so we told each other stories. One of those times Brady told me a story of "Brian and Kelsey" and how they met and fell in love. It was really us, of course. So when Brady said that to me on our hike I laughed to myself, but couldn't hardly breathe and I told him so and said, "you tell one instead." I honestly had no idea that's actually what he wanted me to do!
Brady began, "Well, there once was a boy named Brian and girl name Kelsey and they met and fell in love and broke up. But this isn't about them. This is about a boy named Brady and a girl named Katie." And he continued to tell our story from the beginning from his point of view, but in third person. So I got to hear all of his thoughts and feelings about everything. It was perfect! I chimed in a few times to help fill in some gaps.
When we got to the top of our hike we stopped the story so we could enjoy the scenery. The woods had opened up into a small lake.
We noticed a guy on the other side taking pictures of something, so we walked around so we could look past the bushes at what he was photographing, and there one the other side of the lake were two huge moose! It was amazing!
Brady and I plopped our blanket down and had our Chiptole picnic while we watched the moose. Before we finished a mom and baby moose also came over to the lake. It was such an amazing sight to see!
When we finished eating Brady had finally finished our 6 year long love story. He still hadn't popped the question so I was wondering if he would, but not too worried. That photographer was still photographing the moose and a deer that had trotted into the picture.
We packed up our dinner and followed the trail back to the side of the lake that was hidden by bushes and tree. Brady stopped me and pulled me around close to him.
"The story isn't over," he said. "One day, Katie and Brady went on a hike. They got chipotle. And saw 4 moose! Then what happened?"
I refused to say. I knew what was coming. But what if I was wrong?! I mean, I didn't see a box bulging out of his pocket. And he let me get things in and out of the backpack. So what if he was just playing some cruel trick on me so that when he really did ask I'd be surprised?
Finally he gave up, "Well, Brady got down on one knee and pulled a ring out of his pocket." He did so as he was saying this.He grabbed my hand, "Katie, will you marry me?"
I cannot describe the feeling. I was afraid of how I'd feel because I knew it was coming, but I was so incredibly happy. He set it up just perfectly when he brought back all those old memories and feelings.
I immediately said yes and was so excited and happy about looking at him and kissing him and being giddy that I didn't even look at the diamond he put on my hand until later.
I cannot wait until I get married to this boy! I love him like crazy!
I met the love of my life years ago. We both grew up in Minnesota, but an hour away from each other. Our church's youth group is what ultimately brought us together. We both belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, also known as Mormons. Our church would hold youth dance every few months and although we can't remember completely, we are convinced we must have danced at one of these at least once.
Brady graduated from high school, and I was enjoying the summer before my senior year of high school. Our church planned a church history trek for all 16-18 year olds in our area. This took us on buses all around the upper midwest for a few days. Brady and I were in seperate groups, but happened to be on the same bus two of the days. I immediately started crushing on this silly, adorable red-headed boy. Unknown to me, he was also crushing on me. But being too scared of each other, neither of us said anything. After the trip I tried to ask him on a date, but because of the way it played out he didn't know it was me and nothing came of it.
We saw each other once or twice after that, but life and circumstances got in the way.
A year later I was graduated from high school and working at ValleyFair, an amusement park in Minnesota. In the middle of the summer Brady went to Valley Fair with some friends, but I wasn't working that day. I later found that out after seeing some pictures on Facebook, and so started commenting on them and soon enough Brady and I set up another date to get a group together to go to ValleyFair.
The day began and before we met up I had hardly even remembered I had once had a crush on him. It didn't take long though and all the same feelings returned. They did for Brady too. Each of us was unaware of each other's feelings, and again being unsecure and naive we secretly tried to sit by each other on rides with out the other one knowing (it still makes me laugh to think about that). I later found out that Brady almost kissed me on a water ride, but thought better of it. Good thing. At that point in my life I had only been kissed once and I probably would have freaked out.
Sadly I don't have a picture from that day, but here is us at ValleyFair a year later.
This day developed into Facebook wall conversations, which developed into Facebook message conversations, and soon enough texting conversations that made me change my cell phone texting plan.
Brady owed me money from buying his ValleyFair ticket with my employee discount, and so we set up a time to meet. I ever-so-slyly changed our "meeting" into a double date with his little brother and another girl. We went to The Caves, a dance club in Minneapolis that had swing dancing on Thursday nights. It was not until after we got into the club and paid that I found out I was the ONLY one in the group that knew how to swing dance. Sheesh! After attempts at teaching them, we all ended up outside and spend the rest of the night just talking. Brady may or may not have dropped me off late for curfew because he got lost... (don't tell him I told you!)
This all seems like a fantastic start, but here's the twist- I was leaving in just two weeks to move to Utah for my freshman year at Brigham Young University. We hung out a few more times. Once I thought I would never see him again. I was leaving in a few days and he was giving me a ride home from a friend's house. I was holding a bunch of stuff and as I was about to get out of the car he said, "Can I have a hug?" Now here is where out stories differ. If you ask me I said "yeah" and placed all of my things on the floor. If you ask Brady, I said "yeah" and threw all of my things on the floor. (FYI-My story is more accurate).
Deciding to be a brave little 18-year old, I got him to come over the day before I left to say goodbye. We spend the afternoon in my backyard sitting on the trampoline trying to make conversation, even though we were both still so nervous we could hardly say anything intelligible. In fact, I am quite certain at one point I looked over at my mom's garden and said, "I wonder why that tomato plant is crooked." Oh geez. How in the world this boy fell for a girl that made comments about tomato plants being crooked is beyond me...
While we were sitting on the trampoline is when we first held hands. It was absolutely perfect. We were both so nervous that when our hands finally touched the butterflies in my stomach went wild. I couldn't have been happier. Until he left. (Two hours late for work I might add). Then I became depressed. Dramatic? Maybe. But I knew there was something special about this boy and I had just said goodbye.
Well, my bravery spiked and before I left for the airport the next day I sent him a message and told him he had better keep in touch. I am so glad I sent that message. It began 9 months of 2+ hour nightly phone conversations (more of an average of 3 or 4 hours), monthly trips back to Minnesota (luckily my dad works for the airlines) and 6 months later the words, "I love you."
I moved back home for the summer after my freshman year and thought I was in heaven when I got to see Brady at least two times a week (he still lived hour away). I couldn't wait for the day when I could see him everyday. I knew, though, I would again have to said goodye, and this time it would be much harder.
That December Brady left on a two-year proselyting mission for our church. This was a voluntary thing, and while I wanted him to go and serve the Lord, my heart was broken when we said goodbye.
Two years is a long time. We both decided that while yes, right then someday we wanted to get married, we had no idea what the future would bring, and it wouldn't be fair for me to live in a box for two years. (For those who don't know, Mormon missionaries detach themselves from home so they can focus on the work they are doing and grow closer to the Lord. In other words, we only wrote letters. And we chose to not write often so I wouldn't distract him). So while he was away I dated. It took me 16 months to really try to give my heart to someone else, and while I was fair to the couple guys I dated, it was never the same. I was never in love with anyone else.
Finally, two years were up. Brady was coming home. A few weeks after he came home I flew from Utah to Minnesota to see him. Things were hard. I was different. I was almost a college grad now. He was different. He spent two years serving the Lord. We stayed friends, but both were going through hard things in our own way. Soon we decided it was too hard to just be friends and we stopped talking. A few months later, he moved to Utah. We didn't talk at first, but that didn't last. Before long we were dating again.
The summer was amazing. We had a blast. School started again and life became stressful, but Brady made it all okay. We still lived 45 minutes apart, so weekends were our only time to be together. But they were perfect.
In December of that year, last year, 2011, Brady came home with me for Christmas and New Years. At this point my parent's had moved to Georgia so that's where we went. Starting a month or two earlier, Brady had began talking marriage. And I began freaking out. Suddenly now that marriage could be a real thing, I wasn't so sure anymore. I mean, it's a big deal! It's forever! So I chose to not think about it. Until he brought it up. And I freaked out. Over break, though, we just relaxed and had a great time. And went to the Atlanta Aquarium.
In January, a few weeks after we were back in Utah, I couldn't take the stress of the decision making process anymore. So I threw in the towel. I said goodbye...again. But Brady and I have this problem where we can't stay away from each other. Ever. So we tried to be friends. It ended up in "we're a couple but we're going to pretend we're not." So then we stopped talking. But we couldn't. So we tried to be friends. And the cylce continued. Months went by and Brady moved to Salt Lake. And then I moved to Salt Lake. And suddenly we were closer than we ever had been. Less than 5 minutes away. This didn't help our cylce. It kept going. Finally I stopped and said, "what am I doing? I love this boy more than anything. I can't live without him. He's my best friend. Why the heck shouldn't I marry him?" There was no reason. He was and is my everything. I know this is so cliche and cheesy to say, but he completes me. Really. Honestly. Truly. We are the perfect balance for each other.
So a month and a half ago, before I left on trip with my brother to Australia, I cuddled with Brady, looked up and him and said, "Ok. Let's get married." It may have taken a few minutes to convince him I was serious, but the rest is history.
I will do a separate post on the proposal for all those who already know our love story (especially those who almost know it in more detail than I do!).
We are getting married on December 27th, 2012 in the St. Paul Minnesota LDS Temple.
I may or may not make a come back. BUT I have some important news to share. My classroom is [almost] all set up!!
Ok, so maybe that isn't the most important of my news. But it's great, huh?! I've been so busy. In case you were wondering where the heck I've been, I've been in California, Australia, Georgia, back to Utah and in my classroom all day every day. Pictures to come of Australia? Maybe. But I really do have some other important news first.
Details of our love story and the proposal to come!
I grew up in a religion that encourages it's girls and women to dress modestly. My parents also believed this strongly and so I grew up always buying a one-piece and never a bikini, wearing skirts and and dresses that hit my knee and never showing my stomach or cleavage.
I always was fine with it.
Well, I got older. I moved away. I went to college. And now I am a career woman. I still choose to dress modestly. Not because my parents won't "let me out of the house looking like that," but because I want to. Why would I chose this?
Let me preface this by saying this is my choice. I am not saying that in any way anyone else's choice to dress differently is wrong or bad. I know many amazing, wonderful women that do not share my same views. That is fine. I am simply stating the reasons behind why I do this, as I know some people wonder.
Let's think about [a few of] the reasons I might choose not to. First of all, I might feel "prettier" wearing shorter skirts or showing a bit of cleavage. Guys like it, right? But why do they like it? It makes me "hot" and "sexy." Do I want a guy whose first impression of me is "sexy"... or "beautiful"? I choose beautiful. I can still be pretty and attractive to men by wearing a dress that goes to my knees and covers me up on top. I personally also have more respect for a man that is looking for a modestly dressed woman.
Competition. Not competition over boys, but girl competition. If you're a girl, you know what I'm talking about. I don't know why it exists, but it does. I have so many awesome girl friends, yet when I meet a new girl I feel some weird underlying competition. Not every time and not in every situation, but often it is there. [And it's strange because many times I end up being friends with the girl and forget about any sort of competition.] Sometimes the competition is because of jealousy. When I see a cute girl wearing short shorts and a tiny tank top, even in a classy way, I get a little jealous. She looks cute, right? Not slutty. But guess what I realized? I can look cute in my longer shorts and t-shirt too.
Those are my two main pulls of ever wanting to dress in a way that I deem as immodest, but there is one more: convenience. Holy cow, it is sometimes a nightmare to find modest clothes! Most especially in dresses and shorts. Thank goodness that maxi skirts are in style, but do I really want to be traipsing in a maxi all the time? No way. I want variety! I love sundresses just as much as the next girl. And when I go into Forever 21 I just about die. So many adorable dresses. Wouldn't it just be so much easier to buy one of those dresses that's a little too short, or a little too low, or even just spaghetti straps? Yes. Yes it would be. So how do I counter convenience? I counter it with the real reason behind why I choose to dress modestly.
I choose to dress modestly out of respect for myself and respect for God. Like I said above, I don't need to show more skin to get a guy to like me or to feel like I fit in with the girls. That is respecting myself. I also do it to show respect to my Heavenly Father. He made this body for me, and I need to treat it with the utmost care and respect. That doesn't mean that I should use it to get men, or use it to fit into the current "trends," but that I should treat it as what it is-a Heavenly gift. A gift designed for much more than being a sex-appeal, some kind of object, or even a model for the world's latest trends. Dressing modestly can be a challenge sometimes, but to show respect to myself and my God, it is a challenge I am willing to take on for the rest of my life.