Gabriela and Stewart
How We Met
I had attended the same private school since Kindergarten, but Stewart didn’t come to my school until the 7th grade. However, it wasn’t until 8th grade that he started hanging out with my group of guy best friends more and more, and after no time, Stewart and all of us became best friends! We all hung out nearly every single weekend from 8th grade all the way until we graduated. I was already best friends with all of the guys, but I noticed something particularly special in Stewart. Since we were best friends, we told each other everything, but neither of us never really considered dating each other since we didn’t want to chance ruining our friendship, or causing division between our friend group. After about three years of being friends, we started getting a little closer and decided to give dating a try. Neither of us had ever dated anyone (let alone even kissed someone!), so we prayed and asked God for guidance from May of our sophomore year to December of our junior year, and on December 23, 2011 he asked me out on what I thought was going to be our Christmas date! And we’ve been dating ever since! It’ll be four years next week!
Funny enough, a few years into our relationship I told him that if we were ever to get married, it would be a dream come true and “like a fairy tale.” Being the forgetful person that I am, I forgot that I had told him that particular detail, however, he never did.
How He Asked
Stewart and I had just finished a pretty hard semester of college. Luckily, we had made all As in our hard classes, and so to celebrate, Stewart said we should have a “Treat Yo Self” day on Wednesday the week after finals (If you’ve never watched Parks & Rec, then you should definitely watch it so that you’ll understand the “Treat Yo Self” reference!). The week of our big date, I had found a new cute clothing store in a nearby shopping outlet and had told Stewart all about it. He said that he wanted to get me a nice dress for our big date so he said he’d take me back to the outlet to find a dress I liked! We went on Monday and I picked out a super cute dress, I was pretty excited to get to wear it for our big date!
On Wednesday afternoon, we went to the Ice Show at the Gaylord Hotel like we’ve done every December for the last four years. Following the ice show, we got hot chocolate because we were freezing…just like we’ve done every December for the last four years. However, something was a little different about this day. Stewart seemed particularly nostalgic, and kept pointing out how lucky he was to have spent four great years with me. However, I didn’t really think much of it and just kept enjoying our fun date together!
He had a nice dinner planned for us that evening, so when we got back from the Ice Show I went home to get ready for our big date night. He picked me up at 8 PM and we headed to downtown Fort Worth. Reservations were at 9 PM so we wasted some time by getting Starbucks at Sundance Square. Around 9 PM we headed to the restaurant, Reata, across the street. Once we were seated at our table, Stewart asked if I’d like to go upstairs to the rooftop seating area that overlooks downtown to see all of the pretty lights. I quickly obliged and I followed his lead. When we got to the rooftop, I noticed there was a Christmas tree set up with presents underneath it. As we got closer, I saw my name written on the presents. We sat down and I started opening up the first present. I opened it up and saw that it was a Bible with Stewart’s last name on it. He explained how he wanted our marriage to be grounded in the Word of God and how he wanted our Faith to stay as the basis of our relationship. He had two verses bookmarked in the Bible (1 Corinthians 13 and Ecclesiastes 4:12) for me to read that explained the importance of loving one another with God at the center of it all. Next, he showed me a slideshow with pictures of us from the last four years on it set to the song “Can’t Help Falling in Love” (The Haley Reinhart version).
After watching the slideshow, he took my hand and led me to the middle of the rooftop patio. There were twinkly lights strung across the arbor above us, it was like a fairy tale. The rooftop of the restaurant overlooked the downtown of the city, and it was absolutely beautiful. He then told me how much he loved me, and reinstated how he wanted Christ to be the center of our relationship. I particularly loved how he kept Christ as a central theme for our proposal–it was a perfect depiction of how we strive to keep Christ at the center of our lives. Next, he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him and I quickly said yes!
Stewart had one of our friends from high school, Eric Rendon, take pictures of the proposal. Eric is a local videographer and did a phenomenal job! Being a photographer myself, Stewart knew how much I really wanted pictures to capture this important moment so I’m incredibly thankful that he planned ahead and had Eric there! Also, special thanks to Stewart’s little brother, Connor, for setting up everything at the restaurant for us!
Opening up the first present, the Bible with my future last name on it!
Watching the slideshow with pictures from our past four years together.
The ring, he did such an amazing job!! Also, I’m very happy that I happened to get my nails done before the proposal!!