How We Met
Caleb and I met in junior high. Our story began (sort of) with a valiant attempt by Caleb to date me when I was 15. Which was ultimately squandered on account of me being too timid to date such a put together young man. Finally, a few years later, Caleb again tried to win my heart and managed to succeed in October 2013, my senior year of high school. After he asked my parents for permission to ask me out, he waited a good two weeks before he made his move. He’s one who likes to be absolutely sure of his decisions before acting. And that is what makes all of this so special.
After what felt like the longest two weeks of my 17-year-old life, he at last held me in his arms as we looked up at the stars in my backyard one night after a “group outing” to see the Hunger Games. He asked me if I would go on an adventure with him, and then asked me to be his girlfriend. I replied a wide-smiled YES to both. And so our adventure began.
We spent that last year of high school growing up together and loving every moment of being young and in love. Though we both knew that soon the summer after high school would end and I would be leaving for college without him. We just knew we could make a long distance relationship last. And we did- for a while until the separation and life changes we were going through alone ultimately separated us.
We stayed friends, even through the discomfort. Then, the following semester, Caleb joined me at George Fox University.
About a year after our separation occurred, Caleb asked me again to be his girlfriend outside in the garden at our favorite coffee shop in town. And once again, we set off on our great adventure together. This time, more prepared to endure hardship and with lessons we had learned when we were apart.
how they asked
After years of dating my best friend, August 17th, 2018 rolled around. That morning as I wrote my daily blog for work and typed August 17th at the top of the page, I had no idea the significance that date would soon hold. Every Friday, I was accustomed to driving to Newberg where Caleb lives to spend Friday night with him. This Friday however, he called me after work and told me that he would come to pick me up. I was glad. I stole a few bites of ice cream out of the carton and scrolled through Instagram in my sweats while I waited. Then Caleb called me again. This time he said with a sense of urgency, “Ok, I need you to put on your navy blue dress, with the mesh on top.” Caught off guard, I had to think for a moment and finally replied, “that’s a fancy dress, are you sure?” He said, “I know, we are going out tonight.”
With this new information, I promptly put away my ice cream and changed out of my sweats into the outfit he had requested. Panicked- I half curled my hair and wiped off my day-old eyeshadow to add a fresh layer. I thought I knew what could be happening, but wasn’t sure. Caleb showed up at my house a few minutes later wearing navy slacks that matched my dress, along with matching suspenders and a bow tie. He had gotten a haircut and he looked incredible. We exchanged a greeting full of anticipation and uncertainty on my end, and off we went.
To my surprise, we drove back to Newberg, I was trying to make small talk the whole time. He interrupted one of my feeble attempts at last by saying, “Alright, we are going to go on a little tour. We will start with our third most special spot in Newberg.” My eyes lit up and the butterflies began to swirl inside of me. Then we pulled into the McDonald’s parking lot. Yes, that’s right. For our very first date in high school, we attended a symphony in Bend followed by a stop at the nearest McDonald’s. As Caleb and I pulled into the Newberg McDonald’s, we laughed together and reminisced on that wonderfully awkward day. Then we drove to our next stop on the ‘tour’.
The garden behind the coffee shop where Caleb had asked me out for the second time looked the same as it had on that day. We smiled and talked through the emotions on that special day there as well. Next, we drove to a food truck area in Newberg and Caleb ordered us both Thai food. Now I was just confused because we were dressed to the nine’s and he had alluded to reservations somewhere. But I thought I had better keep my mouth shut and see what he had planned. Now, at this point, it was Friday around 5 pm in Newberg. It was August so people were coming back to the college town to begin school soon. So it’s not much of a surprise that we started seeing so many of our friends show up, also for Thai food. They saw us and started asking questions:
“Wow! You guys look fancy!”
“Just a date night?”
“What’s the occasion?”
Like a champion, Caleb breezed through their inquiries, grabbed our Thai food, my hand, and we hit the road again. He drove me then to the outskirts of town and we parked at the base of a large hill. I was a bit confused because this hill hadn’t held much significance for Caleb and I. We began walking the switchback trail up the hillside. We rounded a corner near the top and at that moment I spotted in the distance, a table covered in a bright white tablecloth with a vase of roses on top.
Now the butterflies in my stomach began a tornado. We kept walking and soon the path turned to a bed of rose petals, lined with mason jars with tea lights inside. We were at the top of the hill. Completely elated, I let Caleb pull out my chair at the table and took my seat. He served me my Thai food on the plate he had brought. He poured me a glass of Pink Moscato- my favorite beverage- and sat down across from me. At this point, we were SO nervous! My nerves manifested in a lack of appetite, so I started politely picking at my food, trying to eat and once again – trying to make small talk. Caleb, on the other hand, was so nervous that he started shovelling his food into his mouth so that his mouth was too full to give much response to my silly questions.
Finally, Caleb finished his food, I admitted my inability to finish mine and he cleared our plates. Next, he pulled out his guitar where it had been tucked under a nearby bench. He pulled his chair closer to me, away from the table and began to play. He played my all-time favorite love song and sang the entire thing to me. The golden hour sun was behind him, so everything was glowing. And I. Was. Crying. It was the most beautiful, magical moment hearing the love of my life sing the sweetest song to me. My heart was overwhelmed.
After he finished his song, he put his guitar away. He took my hands in his and said, “So, Samantha, my love. We have visited some special places today. But this spot is about to be our number one special place.” He continued, “Years ago, I asked you to go on an adventure with me…” -I will pause here because he then shared the sweetest words that I will treasure just between him and I.- “….Now, I am asking you to go on an even greater adventure with me.” He dropped to one knee in front of me, reached into his pocket and pulled out a small box.
“Samantha Biever, will you marry me?”
I collapse on him, tears streaming, hands shaking, heart overflowing. At last, I managed to say ” yes I will!” I was so overwhelmed that he had to pick me up and hold me before he could even put the ring on my finger. So after he had held me for a moment, he reached over to pick it up and slid it onto my finger. I cried, even more, when I looked at how beautiful it was. It was the rings of my dreams, more beautiful than I could have imagined! We kissed and I began thanking him for the ring over and over. Just then I heard giggles from the bushes behind our table. Suddenly, out jumped our friends Heather and Michael! They had been hiding and taking photos the entire time!
Caleb made that day and that whole experience the most special and significant in every way. I am so thankful to call such a thoughtful, kind, and wonderful man my fiance, at last!!!