Chris and Emily

Image 1 of Chris and Emily

How We Met: We met at Iowa State University where Emily was attending school and I was visiting a friend. It was at a party in August of 2013.

how they asked: I have been thinking about how I was ever going to propose to Emily as I knew she was the one for me and I wanted to take our relationship to the next step. I knew she felt the same way as we have talked about it before. I was constantly thinking of a romantic ways to surprise her. I put a lot of pressure on myself to make it memorable because Emily would constantly show me really neat proposal videos on YouTube. I could tell she wanted something similar and I wanted to make sure she had her dream proposal. I am not much of a romantic, just ask Emily, but I knew I could make up for lost time by making our proposal one to remember forever.

I had a check list going in my head of the things I knew she really liked. For example, she really wanted her family to be part of the proposal, the proposal to be video tapped, and have it evident that I put a lot of time and thought into it. So every time Emily and I weren’t together from March to May I would be on the phone with my family coordinating different aspects of the proposal and how I want it to be done, and selecting the perfect ring.

Image 2 of Chris and Emily

I lined up my friend Michael Crocker to fly in from California to film it all and I lined up another friend, Tyler Rinken, who was a photographer to take photos of the moment as well. I had my family buy rose petals and roses to put on the floor, I sent them a bunch of photos of me and Emily to print out to place around the room, I had them set up a speaker to be playing our song which is “All of Me” by John Legend.

Image 3 of Chris and Emily

“Will you marry me?” was spelled out and rose petals and candles on the floor of the room where she would walk into. I planned to surprise her at one of our favorite restaurants Rubiayat which is in downtown Decorah. They have a small banquet room in the back of the restaurant and they are not open until 4:30 PM. Therefore, my parents and sisters would set up before hand and once the room was complete and everybody was in place the owner called me to let me know that he has a graduation gift and that he would like me to pick it up before they open up at 4:30. It was convenient that Emily and I were already dressed up from my speaking engagement that morning and I had her touch-up her makeup before we left because I told her we had a video interview with the news station afterwards. I knew touching up would be important to her as she always wants to look perfect and I was worried that she might change out of her dress after our speaking engagement so saying that we had a news interview later was a important piece for the proposal.

That day I could not eat a thing. I didn’t eat breakfast or lunch because I was so nervous. And she kept asking me why aren’t you eating? Chris you need to eat you have a big day tomorrow. Little did she know I was extremely nervous for the proposal that would be taking place at 2 o’clock but I wasn’t nervous that she would say no but I wanted it to be perfect.

For more on Chris and Emily’s story click here.

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Photos by Tyler Rinkin // Video by Michael Crocker