Friday, October 10, 2014

The Proposal: June 21

Well I said I'd post soon! And now I can actually say I followed through. When life settles down, I sure look forward to starting back into blogging on thrift finds and sewing and food... but I'm a little caught up in love land at the moment, and I'm sure you don't mind me telling you how Chris proposed. 

So here it is, as told on our wedding website from kinda a third person point.

The past year was full of phases when we frequently said, "this is crazy". And all of it led up to this one moment that will start the craziest chapter of all. So why don't we tell you about that moment!

We frequent a certain coffee shop in good ol' downtown Gresham. Naomi has been going there for years for coffee dates and personal reading time. Chris spent a decent number of hours there while hard at work searching for a job after moving to Gresham. During Chris' first visit we spent hours there getting to know each other, and it became the place we go to just hang out. 

Chris had made Naomi think that he was too tired to do anything much that Saturday. So he sat back and made her think she was calling the shots. The morning was relaxing - we made brunch together and read out in the sun. As the afternoon rolled on, we went to run a few errands that Naomi needed to do. The plan was to end up at the aforementioned coffee shop and read for a long relaxing while.

When we arrived Chris went to order Naomi's drink. Little did Naomi know that he had snuck the ring in his pocket. Oblivious to what was happening, Naomi was chatting with some friends who just happened to be there (not knowing they were there for the sole purpose of distracting her). During their conversation, Naomi noticed a guy sitting in the corner across from her strangely engrossed in his camera ... but then was distracted (once again) by another friend who also happened to be in the coffee shop, doing "photography work" for his job.

Conversation moved on. Chris rejoined the group and sat with Naomi on their favorite couch. The husband of their friends had received a phone call and came back to tell his wife that his sister, was shopping in Gresham and needed help with a dead car battery. "We'll be back in 10 or 15 minutes," they said. Naomi thought it was strange since she thought, Doesn't his sister live in Portland? Who in Portland shops in Gresham? However, with their leaving, Naomi jumped at the chance to call a friend back who she'd missed a call from earlier. It was going to be a long phone call so Chris momentarily panicked. He came up with some weird babbling, stuttering, (stalling) noises in an attempt to get off the phone, so she hung up to ask what he needed. 

(Thankfully) Chris didn't need to come up with much of an excuse, because a barista brought out a mug and handed it to Naomi, saying, "Here's your Americano." Naomi was super confused:

Why is this a mug? They always use to-go cups. And why is this so light? Where's my coffee??? Oh wait - cute! There's pictures on this mug... Wait? These pictures are of us? Oh how cute! She thought Chris had given her a thoughtful gift. (Naomi loves mugs!) Until she moved her fingers that were covering the bottom half of the mug - there it read, "Naomi... Will you marry me?"

She went into shock, asking a multitude of half questions, "What are you...?" "Where did...?" "Is this a...?" "What's happening in...?" and she finally landed on, "Are you really proposing to me right now?"

Chris responded with, "Yeaaaahhh." (Insert the tone you hear when a 10 year old says "duh")

Chris pulled a ring box out of the mug and opened it with a giant smile.

After Naomi realized she was sitting in silence for a few moments she said, "YES."

Hugs and smiles followed... and more hugs! And the whole world said... "Aaawwwwwww"

Psalm 37:4-6
Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. 
Commit your way to the Lord;trust in him, and he will act. 
He will bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Best Story So Far: Part 3 (Up Til Now)

Photo Credit: David James Visuals

Yep. I'm still alive. And feeling a little guilty it's taken me so long to finish this story. 
Sorry for the cliffhanger! 

In case you need a recap:
Best Story So Far: Part 1
Best Story So Far: Part 2

Last I mentioned in this love story, I was flying down to meet my boyfriend's family in Cali. I think I'll pause here and go ahead and tell you. His name is Chris. And at this point, we have both expressed our love for each other. It wasn't cheesy, and it wasn't cliché. It was a beautiful conversation. And that's all I'll say about that: At this point, we love each other.

I was nervous to meet his family. I'm a pretty confident person, in general. But this was different. I was embarking on a weekend packed with tons of new people, in two different towns, from 3 different eras in Chris's life... Gearing up, I had determined to not get overwhelmed... after all, he had already done this part in my stomping grounds!

The whole weekend went so000 well, not to mention how much fun I had and how many amazing people I met. 

The weekend concluded with conversation about "closing the gap" geographically between us. Long distance was difficult. And while we'd only been experiencing this for a few months, both of our intentions were long term. 

The Move. 
I know it may feel like I'm cutting things out, but I know no other way to embark on this next chapter without just diving in. Two months after my trip to California, I was making a second trip. I flew down to spend a little more time with his parents before... 
He Moved Up To Me. 
Yes folks... Christopher packed his bags just over 6 months after we met, and made the drive with his crammed-to-the-top 4runner to a new home, just a 5 minutes drive from me. 

"Pursuing" has reached a whole new level here.
He moved. For me. 
Thinking back as I type those words, it still makes me gasp. 
He packed up his life, he moved his life, to pursue a new life... With Me. 
I cannot grasp it. But I sure am grateful. 

The Wait.
There was no job security, so after a week of settling into the basement he rented, he dove right into the job hunt. I've never in my life seen someone so dedicated to having a well planned out cover letter and intentional resume. 
I was being so impressed by his work ethic... just to find work. So many days of buckling down at coffee shops, surfing the internet for available positions. Resume after resume after resume. No responses. Resume after resume after resume. **Crickets**
He hit about 3 months and finally got a couple interviews. One that even repeatedly called him back for another. But on the final round, they chose someone else. 
**Crowd yells "BOOOO"**
So, resume after resume after resume, he continued faithfully pounding the pavement. 
Then it hit about 5 months of no work. 
We'd been covering this in prayer. Where was a job? Why was nothing panning out?

The Desire.
All the while Chris is job searching, I've been prayerfully waiting. I'm already sure that I love this man, and I know that he loves me. We both entered this relationship on the knowledge that we were dating with the intention to marry, both fully aware God could split us at any time, but that clearly wasn't how it looked after all this answered prayer. I desired to get married, just like I did four years ago when I started praying for my future husband (Wherever he may be).

So, I'd begun to pray for patience. As much as I wanted to be married, I didn't want it to be just in my timing. I wanted God's timing. And I wanted (Lord willing) Chris' timing. 

The Provision.
As people so often say, "It's not what you know, it's who you know." A friend connected Chris with someone Chris had known before he moved. That friend had a friend in a company with a job opening. With a resume, a letter of recommendation, and 3 interviews later, Chris found himself starting a job, 6 months after he'd moved to Oregon. 

What a huge answer to prayer. As we'd thought, "Has the Lord forgotten us?" He responded with providing a job. Thank You God!!!

The Life Change.
Chris started his job the first week in June 2014. If you don't remember. He wrote that first message to me on facebook, June 15 the year before. As the first few weeks of a new job passed, it was quite different. I grew very grateful for the 5 months Chris and I had had together with all his free time. We got to drop things and go on random outings, whenever we wanted. We'd had 5 solid months of spending tons of time together and getting to know each other without silly things like "grown up" schedules. Hahaha. (Yes, I work. But basically right by the coffee shop he parked himself each day and I get off early enough to have quite a bit of the day left.) So this whole both having jobs thing, took some adjusting. 

But it wasn't long until there was a whole new life switch to adjust to. 

Christopher, my boyfriend... Proposed.

Just over a week to the year since we started talking.

And a journey that started a year before became one that would be the change of a lifetime.

I will post soon with the proposal story. But until then... 
I'll just be off wedding planning with just under 2 weeks until wedding day already.

So... Now you can see why it's taken so long to finish the story... I've been plugging away at pulling a wedding together in somewhere around 4 months time. 

Isaiah 40:31
But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; 
they shall mount up with wings like eagles; 
they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
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