Thursday, February 21, 2013

February 14, 2013

I hope everyone had a happy Valentine's Day! Mine was certainly happy. Why? Because Boyfriend PROPOSED!!! That's right, Boyfriend will now lovingly be referred to as Fiance :)

First, a little back story: Our first date was on Valentine's Day way back in 2009. Yes, that means we were dating before we went on our first date, but it worked for us. This date consisted of us walking to the restaurant Flat Branch in downtown Columbia since we lived on campus and neither of us had a car. Even though we had been seeing each other for about two weeks, I remember how nervous I was while we walked and during dinner. And I remember being so touched that Tom brought me flowers :) After dinner that night, we joined some friends to go bowling. All in all, it was a pretty great first date.
Our first date - 2/14/2009
Now, on to the proposal story: Since we've been dating, we've always viewed Valentine's Day as the anniversary of our first date rather than a holiday in and of itself. That being said, because our dating anniversary is just two weeks before Valentine's Day, we've never made a big deal about this holiday devoted to red, pink, and chocolate. Still, since this year was our first Valentine's Day/anniversary of our first date living together, we decided to celebrate a little more than usual.

Tom came up with the idea to recreate our first date. This time, however, we drove instead of walked and skipped the bowling. The evening began with me coming home to a sweet card and a single long-stem rose. (I made Tom a special Valentine's Day breakfast that morning, so he wasn't expecting anything that night.) We got ready and then headed to Flat Branch for dinner. Because they don't take reservations, we waited about 35 minutes to be seated.

During dinner, I noticed that Tom seemed a little antsy, but he quickly brushed it off. We had fun talking and enjoying the delicious food, and we even sat at the same table we sat at on our first date four years ago :)

After dinner, Tom suggested we walk around Mizzou's campus. I was a little surprised since Tom usually hates walking around "aimlessly" (and it was pretty cold outside), but I happily obliged. I mean, what girl wouldn't want to take a romantic stroll around a beautiful college campus on Valentine's Day?

As we walked, Tom asked me to recap my favorite things that have happened during our time together. We talked about all of our firsts during our first year, becoming long distance our second year, all of our visits during our third year, and moving in together and getting Jibboom during our fourth year. It was so fun to take a look back at our relationship and realize just how much we've experienced together. It really has been a wild ride over the past four years, and I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world :)

As we talked, we made our way to the quad and over to the Engineering seal. Mizzou tradition states that anyone who walks on the seal will fall in love with and marry an engineer. During college, I made a point to jump on it whenever I walked by because Tom belonged to the College of Engineering. The seal was just a logical part of our walk through our old stomping grounds. Of course, I made it a point to step on the seal when we got there.

Tom kissed me and was quiet for what seemed like a long time. Finally, asked me what my favorite thing about our fifth year was. I told him that not much had happened since we just celebrated our anniversary a few weeks ago. He then said "Well, I think we should get married this year," and before I knew it, he was down on one knee asking me to marry him!

I'm pretty sure I was speechless for a long time, but I eventually burst into tears and nodded yes! I was completely stunned! There were other sweet words from Tom about how much he loves me and how he wants us to keep going forever, but I was just so happy and shocked that we were engaged! Honestly, the whole moment is a little bit of a blur, but it was absolutely perfect.

As we stood there hugging and kissing (and me crying and admiring my GORGEOUS engagement ring), I noticed flashes going off. Tom hired a secret photographer to document our proposal! He seriously thought of everything and could not have done any better. I'm so happy to have photos of this huge moment in our lives, and -- most importantly -- I'm so happy and excited to be marrying my best friend and the love of my life!!!

After the photographers left and I collected myself and we talked for a few minutes (aka just kept saying over and over how happy we were), we both called our parents to tell them the good news. I also called my brother and my best friend Whitney who was in on Tom's plan. Everyone was so excited and happy for us :)

We decided to walk over to Top Ten Wines for a celebratory glass of champagne. While we were there, Tom told me all about planning the proposal and getting my ring. Can you believe that he bought the diamond TWO YEARS ago? He's had the finished ring since July and has been hiding it in our apartment waiting to pop the big question. And -- get this -- he asked my dad's permission back in May before I moved to Missouri! He's just amazing. I felt like I was on a cloud the entire time. And I still do. The proposal, the ring, and --most importantly -- the man are all perfect. I really am the luckiest girl in the world. AND WE'RE GETTING MARRIED!!!
Yummy Valentine's breakfast I made for Tom
My sweet card and rose :)
Waiting at the restaurant. Still boyfriend and girlfriend here :)
We couldn't be happier :)

All proposal photos taken by Creative Photo.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Brain dump

Jibboom graduated from intermediate training class on Tuesday! All of us worked really hard over the past six weeks. He's just a little too smart for his own good. Stinker. We celebrated with a puppy cone from Andy's. See the cuteness here :)
Boyfriend and I celebrated four wonderful years together on January 30. We treated ourselves to a relaxing couple's massage the weekend before, Boyfriend came home with flowers the night of, and we rounded out the celebration with a delicious dinner at The Wine Cellar and Bistro (seriously, I can't recommend it enough!) last Friday night. A week-long celebration was perfect for that weird point between "I can't believe it's already been four years" and "I can't believe it's only been four years" :)
Gotta love selfies, right?
I decided to stop protesting and join Boyfriend on his quest to cut out carbs. So far, so good (well, except for that one day...and I paid for it the day after by feeling awful with a capital A). We're both trying to limit our daily intake of carbs to 100g or less. Eventually, I'll probably decrease that number, but it's definitely a good starting point. Honestly, it hasn't been that difficult, although I do tend to max out my carb count by around noon each day. Oh well, I guess it's better to eat the "bad" stuff in the morning and make healthier choices as the day progresses as opposed to eating the "bad" stuff all day long.

I got my first-ever gel manicure recently, and I'm officially a convert! It's been almost two weeks since I got it, and there's not a chip in sight. Clearly I was missing out big time. I'm currently sporting OPI's Bogota Blackberry.
I treated myself to a little retail therapy last weekend and scored deal after deal at Old Navy. We're talking $6 sweaters and dresses. BOOM.

I finally saw Les Miserables, and as much as I wanted to be wowed, I wasn't. Maybe I built it up too much beforehand, but I thought it was good -- not great. Mostly, I just felt nostalgic for my junior year of high school when I was in my school's production of it (one of my favorite high school memories by far). Anne Hathaway's performance was fantastic, and Hugh Jackman was good, but -- in my opinion -- Russell Crowe was a poor choice for Javert. His singing doesn't hold a candle to the other actors'. Still, I'm glad I saw it. It's been on my to-do list for a while, and now I'm that much more prepared for the upcoming Academy Awards. I just need to see Lincoln (well, and Amour, Life of Pi, and Beasts of the Southern Wild (?)). Argo, Zero Dark Thirty, and Silver Linings Playbook were all fantastic.

Speaking of fantastic: Destiny's Child at the Beyonce Bowl. My inner 14 year old died. It was AWESOME. Beyonce really killed it. I liked most of the commercials (see them all here), and Boyfriend and I made it through the entire game -- blackout included -- so that's something.

Boyfriend and I have officially started apartment hunting for when our lease is up in July. So that's fun. Not.

I'm 13 classes through my Pure Barre studio's 20 classes in 30 days challenge. Those dang pushups get easier every day, and I feel stronger and more motivated after each class (a sticker chart helps with that, FYI). Attending class at 5:30 am isn't getting easier, but the lifting, toning, and burning is worth it. Here's to looking hot and being healthy!

Speaking of looking hot and being healthy, I've decided to add some cardio to my workout routine. On days that I don't do Pure Barre (usually Mondays and Fridays), I'll be on the elliptical in the gym at my apartment complex. This past Thursday was my first night, and I was pleasantly surprised. I've never had great stamina, but I was able to really push myself and ended up doing a little more than 4.5 miles. I'm pretty proud, and I'm 100% certain I have Pure Barre to thank for my endurance boost :)

I've had the pleasure of attending a few celebrations recently. A beautiful bridal shower at Les Bourgeois, a dear friend's birthday at our favorite sushi place, a quick dinner with friends as they passed through town, and my work's team building activity at The Canvas on Broadway (and the following happy hour at Shiloh) -- all a blast. Here's my painting. Try not to judge me too hard.
Boyfriend and I are the Central Missouri Humane Society's volunteers of the month :) On a sad note, there was recently a crisis at the shelter, and nearly everything had to be thrown out. Dogs and cats need a LOT of stuff. If you want to help restock the shelter, learn more here.

And now, back to the Grammy's. Mumford and Son's just took the stage :)
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