Friday, June 3, 2011

Anniversary Celebration - An Engagement!

I am engaged!! You may have picked this up from my last post, but now I finally have some time to talk about it. 

To begin, I'll start from the beginning! 

Pat and I met in college, I was a sophomore and he was a junior. I'd heard his name many times, but hadn't met him until the Thursday evening before we went home for winter break. Kathryn was visiting from North Carolina (where she was in school) and we went to a party with a bunch of my college friends. I'd made a particularly bad decision that night and decided to wear a fake fur bucket hat (if you can imagine it - quite possibly the worst accessory ever worn). I'd bought the hat the summer before when I was in London, but hadn't found the right time to wear it yet (perhaps because it was the ugliest hat ever that should have never been worn). I think I thought it was cool because I bought it in London. Anyway, on that Thursday night, my friends let me wear the dead animal on my head, and I guess I have to thank them now for letting me make such a horrible fashion faux pas because that hat caught Pat's eye. He came over to me, and without introducing himself, began petting my head. I didn't pick up on the fact that he thought my hat was outrageous, but I did end up talking to him for the rest of the night. The next day we both went home for winter break and didn't see each other again until the end of January, though I did think a lot about him in the meantime. 

As winter turned to spring we began spending more time together, and got to know each other through the help of AIM conversations (which was the main way of communicating for most of high school and college).  Funny to look back now and recall so many "conversations" from my dorm room. On April 24th of my sophomore year (2004) we made our relationship "official." It didn't take long before I knew Pat was the one I wanted to marry. I went home from school that summer and told everyone in my family and everyone who would listen (except for Pat, naturally) that I was going to marry him. I'd never met anyone like him before, and with him everything was better. The past seven years with him have been amazing - mostly full of wonderful memories. Like every couple, we've had our ups and downs, but I think what makes us special is that our bond continues to strengthen. Things that may have torn us apart instead made us stronger. I would do anything for him, and I know he would do the same for me. He's my best friend...and now, my fiance! I am so excited to spend the rest of my life with him, just as I always thought I would.

This past April was our seven year anniversary. We had a little celebration with a local fair and sushi, but the main celebration had to wait until Memorial Day weekend (the first free weekend we had). Usually we go away for a weekend to celebrate our anniversary, and this year Pat told me that he was planning the weekend, so just be sure to keep it free. On Thursday I asked when I'd find out where we were going, and he said that he would tell me so that I could pack accordingly. He presented me with a beautiful book that he'd had bound at work - inside was an itinerary for the weekend, a packing list, and pictures and menus for the meals we'd be enjoying and where we'd be staying. This was so perfect for me - I can get a little carried away with planning sometimes, and will literally plan things out down to what time I want to leave, what I'm going to be eating, etc. Pat made this book with all of the plans that he'd know I'd be wondering about.  

The destination for our weekend away was the Long Dell Inn in Centerville, MA (Cape Cod). We stayed here for our four year anniversary and loved it, so I was really excited to go back. We left early on Saturday morning, stopped for some coffees and snacks (crazy core skittles are a mandatory road snack) and made it to the cape without hitting any traffic (which is unheard of Memorial Day weekend). Pat was in such a good mood that morning - usually I'm more of a morning person than he, but he couldn't stop smiling and seemed really excited about our trip.

We checked into the bed and breakfast.

Then Pat suggested taking a walk down to the beach. It was overcast and not very warm yet, so I threw on a jacket and we headed down.

The ocean. I love the smell of salt water!

We walked along the water, talking and holding hands. We were the only people on the beach except for a group of people all bundled up several hundred yards away. Pat is a very caring, kind and wonderful person. This morning he was being especially kind and kept saying how much he loved me. We stopped and were staring out at the water when Pat told me to turn around. When I did, he was on one knee with an open ring box in his hand. Over the past seven years I've certainly thought about getting married, but I was in no way prepared for this. The first thing I said was "yes" but then I was so overwhelmed and excited that I kept saying "I don't know what to say! I don't know what to say!" and finally Pat said "just say one word, that's all I'm looking for!" And so I repeated the YES, since he hadn't heard it the first time, and then dissolved into the happiest tears.

We heard clapping and cheering and looked over to see the group of people all going nuts. It started to rain, and as we left the beach they all came over to get a look at my ring. They were impressed (as was I!!).

Red nose from crying!
Awkward angle haha - wanted my ring in the picture!

What we did next may sound strange, but if you know us, it wasn't. Even though it was cold and raining, we walked over to Four Seas for ice cream!

A celebratory ice cream was certainly in order! This is the 3rd oldest ice cream shop in New England. They didn't have any candy toppings (which was a little disappointing) but the ice cream more than made up for it. So creamy and delicious!

I got cranberry sherbet (which I topped with some crazy core skittles that were stashed in my jacket).

Here I am shamelessly showing off my ring:

Four Seas also seemed like an appropriate place after getting engaged, since Pat had learned all about the 4 Cs when buying my ring!

We went back to the bed and breakfast and called our parents, siblings and a couple close friends. I was so excited about the news, but also didn't want to spend much time on the phone because I wanted to just be with Pat. My dad knew because Pat had asked his permission. I'm so happy that he did - it may be a little old fashioned, but it was really important to me. When I called my mom she guessed before I said anything, which I thought was pretty incredible. I spoke with Jim and Laura, who were both very happy and offered their love and congratulations. Jim said "I've always wanted a brother!" which was really touching.

The rest of the weekend was wonderful. We walked around the harbor, had lunch with Pat's mom (who was on the cape for the day) and then went out to a wonderful dinner on the Cape Code Railroad Train - we were served five courses while riding through the cape!

The next morning we indulged in a wonderful breakfast at the Long Dell Inn. This may be half the reason I love staying here - the couple that runs the inn puts on such an amazing breakfast!

First course - fresh berry cup
Second course - peach tart
Main course - I had a little bit of everything - pancakes, strata and bacon.
Finish it off with some sorbet and apple slices!
Needless to say, this was the best weekend of my life! I am so happy to be able to say that I'll be spending the rest of my life with Pat. There's nothing better than that!

Oh, we might have stopped at Four Seas again before leaving. This time I got the orange pineapple frozen yogurt - best yogurt I've ever had!

Happy Friday, and Happy Birthday to my FIANCE!


  1. Congrats again! I love how you're showing off your ring in every picture. I did that too. LOL

    Amy @ A Little Nosh

  2. What a beautiful story and a wonderful weekend!
    Your ring is beautiful (as are you!)--you two seem like such a great couple. Thanks for sharing how you met!

  3. Congrats again!!! You look so gorgeous and happy and glowing in all of your photos!!! (along with your ring) :)

  4. congratulations!! love the story! your ring is gorgeous. :)

  5. love your pictures and all the stories and such a beautiful ring!!!