What a whirlwind this trip was. I still look back and think it was one of the best trips I’ve taken and not just because we got engaged. ;) We had so much outdoor time, and just the right amount of city. I remember waking up in Seattle and loving the cool crisp air, seeing the Olympics in the distance from our AirBnb and loving the smell of the salt water. We spent about a day in Seattle before venturing to the part of our vacation we were most excited for - Leavenworth and hiking!
Nathan and I have always been extremely open about our engagement. We had been dating for 6 years at that point! We also however are very practical so in talking about where I wanted to get proposed to it was always somewhere on vacation - ideally in the mountains. However, Nathan always mentioned that he didn’t want to bring an expensive ring on a vacation for fear of losing it. Which I get! I never took the thought off the table, but didn’t want to bank on it.
When we were roaming around Seattle, we went to Kerry Park which is a gorgeous overlook of the city with views of Mt. Rainier! Being excited we were on vacation, knowing he was making payments on the ring and basically wondering when it would happen, I was ready…a little too ready. I was sitting on a bench in Kerry Park just enjoying the view. Nathan was standing right next to me and then got down on one knee. We made intense eye contact for a brief moment and I knew in that moment, this was it! I exclaimed “REALLY!?” At that exact moment, his face went white and immediately said “Oh! No, no no no no no!” What I had failed to notice was he bent down to tie his shoe. (Doh!) He said “I thought about messing you but realized that it would be too mean so this is an accident - I’m so sorry!” Little did I know he actually did have the ring on him at that moment.
Fast forward later in the evening when we were relaxing in our hot tub - we had the proposal conversation again. I was still thrown off from the day. I REALLY wanted it to happen on that vacation and was so disappointed it didn’t. I also forgot….we had a long vacation left. Nathan told me later on in this moment he just wanted to hug me and tell me to wait 24 hours…
The following day was our BIG hike! We wanted to hike to Lake Colchuck in the Enchantments. It was a tough hike but one that was so worth it for many reasons! We happened to stop on a rock to eat some snacks and these friendly hikers came up behind us and asked if they could share the rock - we said sure! And offered them some homemade apple slices. Erik and Suzanne were their names and we ended up meeting on and off during the hike up. We also stopped at one point and swapped couple pictures - to which I handed Erik my camera and he told me how much he wanted to upgrade to my set up - he loved taking photos! (Cue Nathan’s brain.)
We ended up at the lake with them and a few other we they met along the way and the view literally took your breath away. I can’t even explain it and the pictures don’t do it justice. We ate lunch and I wandered around near the shore while Nathan hung back. He tells me later he was SUPER nervous during this time. I remember seeing him take a Kleenex out of his pocket and wipe his face with it, which concerned me that he was starting to get a cold on our vacation. Turns out, that’s where the ring was (in a Kleenex in his pocket) and he had to discreetly get it out. Nathan suggested taking a picture on one rock and Erik said he’d take it. It wasn’t a spot with the lake in the background and Erik said “You sure, here?” and I said “He picked the spot!” We took a few photos, and I was about to get down and all of a sudden, he takes my hand and drops to one knee. All I hear from Erik is “OH SHIT!” and snap snap snap. The series of photos below show my shock and general thought process. I can’t tell you want Nathan said, but it was something about being his best friend for life. I was SO surprised he a) did it b) carried the ring up the mountain in his pocket in a Kleenex c) we had someone to photograph the moment! I said yes!
Cheers to new friends (who we still love seeing their adventures on Instagram. We would love to hike together again!) and our new adventure!