Candace and Garreth

How We Met: Garreth and I met through work email. I work at the Kamloops Chamber of Commerce and Garreth’s business is one of our members. He was due to advertise in one of our bulletins and I sent him and email following up to ensure he was sending. He had entirely forgotten and sent me a hysterical email apologizing and letting me know he would get it to me right away.

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His next email made me laugh even harder. Over the next month and a half, we emailed almost every day, not knowing each other from a stranger on the street, outside of email. One day, he came to the office with a Starbucks gift card to say thanks for my help with his ad creative, and to be able to meet me. I never redden in the face but after chatting with him for a few minutes, the girls at work told me after he left that I was as red as a tomato!

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We continued emailing and a few weeks later we met for drinks. We met at a restaurant around 7, and didn’t leave until they closed the restaurant doors. After that point, we were inseparable. We both knew after that first night that this was something special.

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How He Asked: Garreth and I had planned to go camping for the weekend. We had prepped everything on Thursday, brought all the camping gear out and just had to load up so that we could head out.

He had dropped me off at work that Friday morning and was to come and pick me up around lunch time so we could head out. As planned, he arrived at the office but when I came in from the boardroom and saw him there, he lifted a finger to his lips as if to say “don’t say anything” and did ALA Love Actually.

Not the words, but he had paper and went through a beautiful little spiel about how we weren’t actually going camping, but I needed to come home and pack because we were leaving right away to spend two nights at the old Fairmount Hotel in Vancouver, before going to Poet’s Cove on Pender Island for 5 nights. I cried. And then I got shooed out of the office as my boss and co-workers had known for months that this was planned.

So we went and packed and headed to Vancouver. The second night there we had a dinner reservation at one of our favorite restaurants in the Lower Mainland called Fable. When the waitress seated us, she said, “Oh! Congratulations on your engagement by the way!” We both looked at her and said, “um, we aren’t engaged. You must have the wrong couple!” to which she said “well that’s embarrassing! Sorry!”

So then I spend the entire night looking around the small restaurant trying to figure out who it was and when I couldn’t see any rings on girls that looked like they just got engaged, I started wondering if he was going to propose! So needless to say, I spent the whole dinner wondering and half/anticipating it, even though it didn’t think it was his style to do it there. When we paid and left, I was not surprised, but still entirely bummed! He asked me what was wrong, and I expressed my disappointment.

He became very serious and said something to the effect of “Candace, we have talked about this. You know it’s not going to be for a while. We are trying to buy land, the ring is expensive and there is only so much I can do. I need you to be patient. Of course then I felt awful (Side note – apparently the waitress had been correct. The restaurant had been booked solid and the only way they could make the reservation happen was by Garreth telling them that we were getting engaged, or had just gotten engaged and this was a special dinner. But I didn’t know this until a few days later!)

Moving on, I tried to put it out of my mind (even though I was still wondering if he was going to at some point during the trip). We headed to Pender Island on Sunday morning and relaxed Sunday, Monday and Tuesday in our cottage. Monday I had a hour long aromatherapy massage booked and then Tuesday I had an appointment for a manicure. (He had booked all of this ahead of time for me and the manicure was because he thought “well,. She is going to be showing off her hand a whole lot so she might want to have her nails done.” Who thinks of that??!! My man. That’s who! ).

Tuesday evening he made me a really beautiful dinner before heading out for a special desert he had planned. He told me ahead of time that he had this planned because he thought it would just be cute and romantic to have one in our favorite spot on Pender Island (one which my dad actually painted for us for Christmas). We headed down through the forest to this cove and saw this beautiful table all set up. It was 8ish so the light was lovely on the little bluff and beach. We noticed a little beach to the left that we hadn’t actually been to before, so headed down to explore before enjoying our desert. As I do when I am at the beach, I turned into a little kid and starting picking up shells and rocks. All of a sudden Garreth asked me to come sit on a rock (very excitedly) because “I wrote you a poem”. So I sit and he says “I actually wrote it to you in three languages.”

So he says this (below) first in French of which I understood basically none of because my French is terrible and he knows it. So then he said in Africans and because I have been practicing a bit (He is from South Africa originally) and I understood a bit more, and then he said it in English.

Candace, mon bel ange (My beautiful angel)

Amour de ma vie (Love of my life)

Tu es la femme de mes rêves! (You are the woman of my dreams.)

Qu’est-ce que je ferais sans toi? P(What would I do without you?)

Je t’aime plus qu’hier et moins que demain (I love you more than I did yesterday and less than I will tomorrow)

Je ne peux pas vivre sans toi. (I can’t live without you.)

Je t’aime pour toujours (I love you forever)

Veux-tu m’épouser? (Will you marry me?)

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Then he got down on one knee and said, “there is one more line”, pulled out a blue box with the most beautiful ring ever in it and asked me to marry him.

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I immediately cried and poor guy, said “really???” about 100 times

After we cried and hugged and sat for a while, we headed back up to the table, drank wine, ate a beautiful desert, talked and watched the sun set over the water.

It was perfect.

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