Craig and Kelly
How We Met
Kelly and I grew up in the small town of Burrillville, Rhode Island. We attended the same middle school but Kelly moved to Connecticut for the start of her freshman year of high school. Growing up in a small town we were in the same group of friends growing up but never really formed a real friendship or relationship during that time we were just really acquaintances. I was however very good friends with her best friend at the time Allie. I remember one day being down at our local park and I asked Allie to try and see if she could put in a good word with Kelly for me but she said she was too good for me.
Throughout our high school and college years I made an attempt or two at trying to talk to Kelly. I remember in 2011 when Google had an ad on their landing page that let you play a tune on a piano. I remember Kelly and I going back and forth through Facebook messenger sending each other the tunes we made. That didn’t lead to a date sadly but I finally got my chance when we reconnected on social media again and met up in Newport, RI (where Kelly lived at the time) while I was there for work. She surprised me at the site I was working at with some delicious homemade chocolate cake balls. After I was done with work that day Kelly and I met up for what I would call our first official date at Mudville Pub where we had drinks and a bite to eat.
How He Asked
Planning my proposal was one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life. I have never had to tell as many white lies and keep so many secrets in my life. It all started with Kelly getting a new job which required about five weeks of training on the road. During one of her week stretches of being away in New York Kelly forgot to charge her phone and was being very attentive to the person she was shadowing. I was at a friend’s house in Boston that night and was trying to get a hold of her for about four hours with no reply. I naturally started to freak out around hour three of not hearing from her. Since she just started this job I didn’t want to reach out to her coworkers and seem like a clingy/controlling boyfriend.
I did the only thing I could think of at the time which was to call all the local hospitals, and hotel she was staying at the see if I could find her. I was thinking the worst at this point because this was out of character for Kelly. Finally around hour five she called me and told me her phone died and was with her trainer so she didn’t think it was a big deal. I never want to feel the way I felt that day again. I remember telling my two friends I was with at the time that I have to marry this girl because I’ve never cared about anyone as much as I did Kelly. After that ordeal was over with and Kelly got a backup battery charger for her phone she returned home. She still had four more weeks of traveling on the road, the last two weeks were in Austin, TX.
Kelly and I have been big fans of the show “Fixer Upper” and when Kelly found out she was going to Austin she made it her goal to go to the Silos in Waco, TX. She planned with her friend Lauren to go to the Silos the last weekend she was in Austin. I acted jealous when I found out she was going but I knew this was the perfect opportunity to give her the proposal of her dreams. I immediately booked a round trip ticket to Austin for that weekend without having any other plans in place yet. I had about a month to plan the whole proposal out. I immediately reached out to Lauren and asked if she would mind if I crashed her weekend with Kelly and also asked if she could be my mole in the inside to make sure Kelly stayed on schedule the day of the proposal. I wouldn’t have been able to pull this off without Lauren’s help. During the long month I booked my hotel made all the final plans, went to a local jewelry store and picked out a band and a stone. I also made the ring box out of a piece of drift wood I found out the beach near our house. I took the time to write a letter to Chip and Jo at Magnolia to let them know about my plan, I even stained the letter and envelope to make it look vintage and sealed it with a wax stamp. Unfortunately I didn’t receive a response from Magnolia until after the proposal.
I wanted to surprise Kelly at the market and have a photographer capture the proposal and do an engagement shoot after. I found an amazing local photographer, Diana from Loved Memories. She was very excited because she has never done a shoot at the Silos. I let her know my plan and she was very accommodating. The week before Kelly left for Austin was very hard, I was always on my phone or computer being sketchy planning things and Kelly started to catch wind of it. After talking to her after she said she just though we were in a downtime of our relationship. Even though I didn’t want to see Kelly go for two weeks I was so relieved when I dropped her off at the airport to fly to Austin.
I could finally exhale, during the last two weeks I buttoned up all the loose ends of my plan and got the help of a couple other friends to help me cover up me traveling to Austin. After the incident where I couldn’t get a hold of Kelly in New York we set our iPhone up so we could find each other locations. I knew she looked at it from time to time so I signed into mu apple account on my work phone and switched the location sharing to that phone. I left it at home when I was traveling so it would always appear that I was at home. My little brother Eddie would send me pictures of our dogs so I could send them to Kelly to make it look like I was watching our boys and missing her. I also gave him my login to Snapchat so he could send her snaps from home when I was traveling.
The Saturday of the proposal I told her I was going to a big music festival my friend was attending. I had him send me photos so I could send them to her to make it look like I was at the festival. I asked Lauren to send me a picture of her outfit she was wearing to Magnolia so I could do my best to coordinate our outfits for the shoot. I meet with Diana at Magnolia about an hour before Kelly and Lauren were supposed to arrive. Dianna and I planned everything out for the moment I proposed, she was amazing really helped me calm down and feel relaxed about the whole situation. Lauren saved me name under a fake name in her phone so I could relay the plan to her.
The moment was finally here, Kelly and Lauren showed up to Magnolia and Lauren got Kelly to stand in the open field in the middle of the market. I just came up behind here and surprised her. When Kelly saw me she acted like she just saw a ghost, she couldn’t believe I was there. I knew I had to ask her right away because I didn’t want to give her time to put the pieces of the puzzle together. I took my hat off, dropped down to one knee and took out the ring box I made. The whole market stopped and stared while I asked her, “Will you marry me?” After she said yes the whole market exploded with cheering and clapping. After sitting down on a bench for a little bit and collecting ourselves we then did our engagement shoot on the Magnolia Silos grounds.
I was so relieved that everything worked out amazingly and that the love of my life and best friend said, “YES!” I was and still am today beyond grateful for everyone who helped me including Lauren, Diana (photographer), Kim (jeweler), Eddie (brother), Guy (friend who helped with the photos), and my family for the support.