Joe and Erika
John and I met our senior year of high school. It feels crazy sitting down our story which started almost 10 years ago. We were set up on blind double date.. how horrible is that! Our two friends were dating and so we joined them on a trip to the Cheesecake Factory.. very romantic! I think I even shared my Mac and Cheese balls with him, That’s when I should have realized he was the one. A few weeks after we started dating I went to a week-long mission in El Salvador. When I arrived home, there was a pile of letters and a few handpicked flowers at my door. A love letter for each day I was gone. Later that week when I saw him, John sang me “God Bless the Broken Road” by Rascal Flatts with the karaoke track playing in the background, sitting in his parents’ basement (LOL).
From that moment on, we were inseparable. A few years later, the stress of long-distance and college got to us and we went our separate ways Sophomore year of college. It was a tough time, but we always kept tabs on each other. Postgrad, we had both dated other people and I was living in Philadelphia, John in Maryland. I finally decided to make the move back to Baltimore and found myself having dinner with John on one of the first nights home. At first, we tentatively dated, not sure where it was going (John will later claim he knew we would be married from that moment). We dated for another few years until we were engaged late this June!
I honestly could not have asked for a more amazing proposal story. John and I had planned to drive to a winery about an hour away for a Friday happy hour with friends. They cancelled on us last minute (I wonder why) and John insisted we go anyway. It was a perfect day as we sang along to the radio in his Jeep with the windows down. When we arrived, we did a wine tasting and I was pleasantly surprised, known for being a pretty obnoxious wine snob. We got a bottle and headed out to sit on the terrace. We were getting settled as John went to cheers my very full wine glass at the exact same moment I flipped my hair. I proceeded to spill my entire glass of red wine all over the two of us. He was oddly frazzled but we got the wine out! If only I knew why he was so worried! John pulled me by the hand up to the side of a steep hill lined with vines. He insisted we hike to the top. I fought him for a good 10 minutes but after lots of huffing and puffing, we were finally at the top.
As I started investigating the vines, each row was labeled… the year it was planted the type of grape.. when John pointed to another sign. It read “The Broken Road Ends Here”. At first, I thought we were trespassing. As he started laughing, I made the connection to our song.. God Bless the Broken Road. I turned and saw a man walking out of the vineyard playing the guitar. I was so confused at the moment I wasn’t sure how to react. That is when John took my hand and started to sing.
He started to carefully sing along to the guitar as I recognized, Luke Comb’s song, “Beautiful, Crazy”. I realized what was happening and that’s when the tears started. And well- didn’t stop until the next day. My brain started to wrap around what was happening just as John started to speak. I am so glad I was able to soak in every word. My favorite being-“ 10 years ago I sang you a song to ask you to be my girlfriend. Today I sing you a song to ask you to be my wife.” ANDDDD TEARS. I am pretty sure I screamed yes before he could get down on one knee. I then looked up and saw my big and his best friend hiding taking photos and videos in the field.
I didn’t think the day could get any better. John and I stood at the top of a vineyard, hugging and talking about how excited we were. I asked about a million questions including- does my mom know?! As we walked down towards the tasting room, he filled me in. No one knew- he managed to pull off a major surprise. Almost an impossible feat knowing my family and friends. We entered a giant courtyard with the intention of finding a quiet place to call our loved ones. I looked up to find our entire families and friends waiting for us.
ANDDD cried again. For like 30 minutes. I couldn’t believe he had put so much thought into this plan for me. After a bit more celebrating, we headed closer to home to our favorite local bar. I walked back, John in hand, and recognized the back of someone’s head. That, someone, was one of my best girlfriends that live in Philly. There was a HUGE party waiting for us, including all of my extended family and out of town friends. I was absolutely blown away. And don’t forget- more crying. We celebrated all night long with those we love the most. It was the most absolute perfect day. John was able to bring all of my favorite things together in one day: Family, friends, wine, and HIM!
Spring, At a Park
Spring, At a Park