The rest of my life, that is. I came home from work on May fourth very excited to spend some QT with my favorite person on our two-year anniversary. I came home surprised to see Al already at home and getting ready to go out to dinner at about 4:30...much earlier than usual. This set off no alarms. As I was getting ready, Al was scaring Mila with tobasco sauce on the couch...the usual.
We quickly decided to go to dinner at The Courier in Urbana, where we had our very first date. We ordered the exact same meals as were ordered on that day two years ago-cheeseburger for me, and chicken salad sandwich for Al. We spent our dinner reminiscing over our favorite couple memories. One of mine was our second date to Seven Saints on a night that it rained really hard, and one of Al's was our inaugural trek to Missouri to visit my pops.
After dinner, it was time to head off. Where? I didn't ask. Strangely, I was hardly asking any questions about what our plans were. It was such a beautiful evening that I got caught up simply enjoying it, rather than planning it. On what I thought was our drive home, as my absolute favorite song, "Little Lion Man" by Mumford & Sons was playing, Al suggested we take a stroll in the Sculpture Park. Of course, I began un-romantically complaining about my painful shoes and begging to go home to grab flip-flops. Nope. Al was not budging. I gave up arguing, got out of the car, and was quickly distracted by all the blooming flowers, etc. in the park-so pretty.
I was casually led into the garden near the entrance of the park, where, to Albert's dismay, there was a "HUGE bumblebee". I maintain that it was simply a regular-sized bee, but Al is adamant that it was not only a BUMBLEbee, but it was quite large for it's kind. I was lovingly laughing at him, when Al pointed behind me and said, "Do you think a lot of people walk on that bench?" Huh? Walk on a bench? Just as I was turning around to correct him (of course), he was getting down on a knee.
My obvious response to this awesome surprise was, "Quit joking. Wait...are you serious?" This was followed by ugly cry face and my now-infamous response, "I smell like pickles!" (This was from the pickle that came with my cheeseburger...I don't typically just walk around smelling like pickles. Sometimes, not always.) Of course, I accepted Al's proposal by saying, "Ooh sparkly!", and placing the ring on my own finger. What can I say? I was pumped! We got a few bystanders to take our picture, though I was quite disappointed in their lack of excitement about our news.
Al and I took some glamour shots by Deb, after our snub from the shoeless passers-by.
Then it was off to Radio Maria. My fiance had gone in earlier that day to reserve a table for dessert, and had picked out a delicious bottle of champagne to celebrate. Pink tulips (my favorite!) were set out on our table...I got lucky to rope in such a thoughtful guy! Though Al had already talked to him so he was aware, I called my pops right away to tell him about everything.
We then headed to Seven Saints (the above-mentioned site of one of my favorite dates) for one more celebratory drink. After much internal debate about how I wanted to tell her, I couldn't hold it in any longer, and called my favorite little sister to tell her the news. She helped me keep the secret before revealing the news to my proud momma that weekend. We then booked it home to tell Mila the good news! Though she's always jumping around like a crazy dog, I maintain that she was simply excited about our engagement. :)