How We Met: Ricky and I met through a mutual best friend, Kalee. I was just getting out of a messy break-up and Kalee was wanting to cheer me up. She told me some of her guy friends wanted to meet me. I fought her tooth and nail because I had the flu and the last thing I wanted to do was be around other people, but… she won. I threw my hair in a ponytail to make it look not so out-of-control. I decided I should put on some better clothes than sweats so I threw on a long-sleeve, BSU baggy shirt, and denim shorts without a hint of make-up. I finally managed to drive to Bar Louie to join them.
When I arrived I met Ricky, Kurt, and Chris. Ricky was the one that caught my attention. He had on an Under Armour t-shirt, a flat bill Bulls hat, baby blue athletic shorts, and athletic flip-flops. He had a smile to die for with dimples. We talked through the night, but Chris, one of his best friends left the table to go over to the bar, and then called Ricky over. I decided that it was time for me to go because I wasn’t feeling well and all my energy was leaving. However, before I left Ricky came out to say bye to me and was disappointed that I was leaving. He gave me a huge hug before I left. The next day, I had a Facebook friend request from him and we started talking. He gave me his number and asked if I would go see a movie with him. So I gathered Kalee, and we both went to see Dark Shadows. After the movie we talked in the parking lot where Kalee fell asleep in the back seat. He asked me if I would go out with him, but I said “no” because I just got out of a messy break-up a day before. However, the next day I was working at the coffee job and next thing I know this extremely handsome man walked in. He had a full business dress suit on and was wearing pink as the accent color. I realized it was Ricky. I immediately lit up and was like, “wow! that’s a change!” Remember he was in athletic clothes when I met him.
When Ricky walked in he had one arm behind his back and the next thing I knew he was handing me pink daisy flowers, which are my favorite! I was stunned because I had no idea how he knew, but leave it to my best friend who worked at a floral shop at the time to help him out. Needless to say we met up after I got off work and he asked me out again. I could not help but say yes after all that! Everyone thought I was crazy because I JUST got out of a relationship two days before, but I told them if any man is willing to find out my favorite flower, bring them to me at work in a full business suit in the early months of Summer; he is definitely worth my time. And so it began, our relationship!
how they asked: It all started with me having to work on a Friday and Saturday; however, Ricky asked if I would take those days off to go to The Henderson Castle with his family. I was thankful that I was able to make some switches at work and got the days off to be able to go with his family. I was thinking that we were going because it was tradition that his family went each year, and that a close family friend owned the castle. Later I found out that it was his mom and younger sister that went up last year to have their nails painted, and they came back the same day.
So we packed our bags, watched Ricky and Eston (another friend) play some Madden, and then went to his parents house to get ready to leave. We had his mom, dad, younger sister, Kathy, Josh, Keido (dog), Ricky, and me who all went. We got to the castle around 2 p.m. where we met with Francois, the close family friend. He showed us to our rooms, which used to be old horse stables, but he transformed it into a stunning living area that was separate from the castle. It was absolutely gorgeous.
When we got into our room there was two sets of a dozen pink roses, 2 bottles of champagne, and 2 trays of chocolate covered strawberries dressed like tuxedos. I thought nothing of it and was like that’s so nice that they do that for their guests. Hahaha there was a reason later I found out. After we were situated, we went to the Castle and Francois gave us a tour of the Castle and I was just amazed at the beauty of it all. It was absolutely gorgeous. We all learned much about Mr. Henderson and the history of the Castle throughout each level of The Henderson Castle. There were three levels, plus a basement, and access to the roof. The roof had a hot tub and a beautiful view of downtown Kalamazoo.
We made our way back down from the roof to the first level where we sat at a huge dining table. Our waitress handed us a menu, but Francois said our meal was already ordered. So all of us plus Francois sat down for what turned out to be a 14 course meal. The meal was extravagant and definitely a French style meal that was delicious! We had everything from bread and butter, house salad, a type of salmon that I actually liked (I am not a fish person), caviar, truffles, stinky cheese, 2 types of desserts, veal with bacon wrapped served with mashed potatoes and asparagus, alcohol, and so much more. During dinner of all this food I noticed Ricky was moving his legs consistently, and he looked nervous. I just ignored it, but then it seemed to be getting worse the more we made it through dinner. I looked at him and was like “are you okay?” He said yes. So I thought nothing of it. After we had our last round of food more alcohol and espresso was served. I was so full at this point I was just hoping I didn’t get sick partly because I never eat that much, but also because those were foods I do not eat. Luckily, my stomach was fine and I didn’t get sick!
After dinner, Francois wanted to show us what the roof looked like at night (so I thought). We started our way back up the stairs. He stopped us between staircases and told us a story about how Mr. Henderson showed his love for his wife. He bought his wife a bronze colored gem that she wore, and to showcase his love to her he put the same gem around each window. Still, I did not think anything about the night except that it has been such a great pleasure to have the opportunity to come and enjoy such a wonderful night with the Singleton family, Kathy, and Josh. We finally made it to the top where the roof access was and Ricky started going upstairs. I just waited for everyone to follow, but they had me to follow him. Then they followed me. Ricky was like “babe look at the view” and I was like “I know it is sooooo pretty!” The next thing I knew Ricky was turning me to look at him and his Dad was like I want to take pictures up here. FINALLY the last possible second I finally caught on. I started shaking.
Ricky said, “Remember how I told you I had one more Christmas gift for you”
Me shaking “yes”
Ricky: “Are you ready for it?”
Me: “I don’t know”
Ricky: “Are you?”
Then he got down on one knee and I instantly started crying! I didn’t even hear what he said to me because I was crying. I did hear him ask “Will you marry me?” and I shook my head yes then then squeaked out “yes.” He thought I didn’t say anything because I said it in between tears softly, but I did. I also did not even realize he proposed with the ring in the box because I was just looking at him in shock and happiness.
So after the joyful moment, many pictures, and finally putting the clues together that lead up to the proposal; I finally understood why there was champagne, chocolate covered strawberries, pink roses, and him being nervous at dinner. Why? Because WE ARE ENGAGED!