I picked Beauty up from her home around 9:30. I had 5 different envelopes full of little slips of paper and number one contained the three activities we were going to do first since they required the help of my family. Beauty reached in and pulled out "Juanito Bandito." It's a fun little play that we saw on a trip to Bear Lake earlier this summer. Obviously the play is not still showing so I wrote a little 5-minute play and we went to an excellent showing of it at my mom's house. My mom played Juanito herself and I must say she makes an excellent Bandito, extremely charming and funny :) We also had a Hawaiian Ice snow cone during the intermission (just like at the play) and the kids made a cute little cabin to remind us of our stay there.
The next thing we did was my brother the Dog Walker did an impersonation of our institute teacher, Brother Bartholomew. I asked him to just say a sentence from our three favorite lessons he taught. He knocked it out of the park! He was engaging with questions and really expounding on the topics given. The final thing we did at my mom's house was make toffee together. Last Christmas Beauty and I went over to my mom's and made toffee, fudge, and peppermint bark. This time we only made toffee for the sake of time.
Now on to envelope two. This one was just a grab bag full of different little activities that we enjoy doing together. I feel like divine intervention played a part in the order in which they came out because it really just felt perfect. First was a hike; it was freezing outside so we opted for a shorty and went up Ensign Peak. Next we drew out "run errands." This might sound ridiculous, but really, this has been something meaningful in our relationship. We are both extremely busy people. Sometimes we are both slam packed full of stuff to do but we just want to be together so we'll run errands, and it always turns a stressful situation into an enjoyable giggle fest. Sometimes distractions will happen, but in the end we'll always get what we need to done and we are much happier because we did it together.
For this particular errand we were going to go buy shirts for our engagement photos. Since it was coming up on noon I decided we should interrupt errands with lunch. I grabbed envelope three that had in it a variety of eating options. Some were places that were meaningful to us, but for the most part they were just places we frequented. She drew out "Freebirds" which is a fairly new burrito place. I gave her the option to look through them all if she wanted to, but she said Freebirds sounded excellent so we stopped by.
We went to JC Penney in search of shirts, and we found one we liked but they didn't have my size, so we decided to draw something else out of the envelope in the hopes that it would bring us closer to a different JC Penney. "Temple" was drawn out and we drove down to Jordan River Temple to enjoy the beauty of it while feeling of the spirit. We stopped by her house to pick up some things and while she was inside I reached into the envelope to find "First Kiss." I'd been avoiding kissing her ALL DAY in order to truly relive the first kiss moment and it was driving us both CRAZY! She kept trying to sneak them in. I've never had my nose kissed so many times in a 4-hour period. As she came back out I dampened the first kiss paper and stuck it to the weird glue stuff on the edge of the envelope. She noticed it right away and immediately drew it out.
We went back to my house and I made her pretend to be me as we reenacted the first kiss. After her version of me, I decided to show her how it was really done, not because she did a bad job, just because it was a good excuse to do it again. We spent some time at the house enjoying each other's company while eating cookies, giggling (the giggling started when I took a pair of her green dance pants and tried to squeeze into them. Fortunately they didn't fit! Unfortunately she took a picture anyway.)
Next up we were off to the Utah Peace Gardens. This place is very dear to me because this is where Beauty told me she wanted to date me. Of course for the sake of silliness I pretended to be her for the reenactment. I put on my best soprano. Beauty put on my jacket and a ridiculous sounding man-voice and we walked through the gardens, taking the same route we did before. Reliving events, we saw them through the other person's eyes. Everything was exaggerated, Beauty made me try a berry off a random tree since she had tried a crab apple on a previous visit. The berry was disgustingly bitter and she had a good chuckle at my suffering. We sat down on all the benches, and looked at all the pretty things. The only thing different from our original excursion is this time we held hands, and it was wonderful.
Next we went back to our "errand" this time at Target and for Beauty's outfit. After several attempts we came to the conclusion that I know nothing about women's fashion and I just like looking at her because my opinion didn't change once. "I like it!" The next bit gets a little hazy, we were at my house; we laughed, we cried, we hugged, we kissed, we giggled, we danced (ok, in truth she stood on my feet while I walked in a circle, but that's the only dance I know) we couldn't decide on food, we listened to the words of the prophets. Really it was the perfect example of our time spent together and I wouldn't have had it any other way.
I made her Alfredo for dinner and afterwards we were back to the envelope. She drew out "Steve." I was actually super worried about this one, because it was a little extra silly. Steve is my cat. I've only had her for about 2 months and we picked her out together. She is the sweetest cat in the world and she was one of the first real life-altering decisions we made as a couple so it had a special meaning. I wanted to recreate the moment so earlier in the week I'd borrowed some stuffed animals from my sisters and set up my office to be a fake Humane Society. Beauty played along perfectly, we discussed each stuffed animal and in the end decided on Steve. It was fun playing pretend. I'm so glad I found someone who doesn't need to engage in adult-like behavior to have a good time.
The next couple of things drawn out of the envelope we'd already done so we just talked about them for a moment and moved on; cuddling, giggling, intellectual discussion, playing with Franco, baking cookies (I forgot I put this one in there and baked cookies the night before). Then we drew out "wade in a lake." Beauty was pretty against going out to Daybreak Lake seeing as how it was 25 degrees so instead we filled up the bathtub with warm water, hiked up our pants and got to splashing around. At one point she told me to close my eyes and while eagerly awaiting the kiss I was so positive would come, I suddenly found my face covered with water and a cold wet index finger in my belly button.
Next up was "decorating." We had hung up a couple invisible bookshelves in my family room earlier this year and were both in agreement that we needed another so I had ordered one online and we put it up. Next we read a chapter out of The Screwtape Letters which is a book we'd read together earlier this year. I feel like maybe I'm forgetting some stuff, but really, you get the idea.
At this point I reached for the final envelope that had so ominously been sitting there all day. She pulled out "Goblin Valley." For those of you who haven't been to Goblin Valley, go! It's great! It's a national park by Moab. Earlier this year Lindsey and I had gone down there to look at the stars and share a picnic. We went back to my mom's house where everyone was waiting in the backyard dressed as goblins.
We went onto the hill we'd had our picnic on, only this time the hill was my mom's trampoline. We had our picnic of cookies and a dog treat (long story for another time) and then we stood up and I said the following, or at least something very close to it.. "Beauty, sometimes life's unstable. It wobbles and wavers, it has its ups and its downs. Sometimes you go up so high you don't know where you're going to come down, but there is no one I'd rather have by my side holding my hand to help me keep my balance. Will you marry me?"
Of course I got down on one knee for that last part. Luckily she said yes, we hugged, we kissed, we laid down and looked at the stars, but most importantly we loved each other.