Danielle and Bret

How We Met

The semester before I met Bret, I had decided to take an extra semester in the fall to pursue another degree. I was so excited to take an extra lap at the University of Iowa, especially since my best friend decided to stay an extra semester as well. Upon arrival for our last hurrah, we decided that we would live this semester to it’s fullest by going to our favorite spots each night. I wasn’t planning on meeting anyone special before graduating, especially having come out of a long-term relationship, but one fateful night this cute brown haired, blue eyed man walked into the bar I was at, smiled, and asked for my name.

After talking all night long we were (very) surprised that we hadn’t met before, as he was one of my best friend’s roommates, he was taking an extra semester too and our Greek chapters were very close. I guess you can say that ‘the rest is history’ because the first conversation lead to numerous dates and the conclusion that although we had never met before, fate was on our side because the timing would not have been right previous to our final semester (or maybe that we were just too short to see each other over the bar lol)! The following months flew by and before we knew it, we were graduating and madly in love.

how they asked

Travel has always been super important to me and on our second date, Bret told me he had never been to Europe and he had always wanted to go. Not knowing what the future held, I jokingly said that we should go sometime. Fast forward five months, we were graduating and moving to Denver together until Bret had to start his new job in Chicago. For the Holidays, Bret asked me what I wanted as a gift and I said that I would always rather have experiences than things. Throughout the next two years of long distance, experiences with each other were what we looked forward to the most, which is why I was so excited when Bret surprised me with a trip to France as my holiday gift in 2017. We were so excited to explore Europe together and decided to wait until 2018 to go during my favorite month, September!

In preparation for our trip we asked a friend if we could borrow their nice camera so we could take “professional looking” photos to capture the beauty of Europe, but a few days before we were leaving Bret let me know that we could no longer take the camera and I was bummed. Bret told me not to worry and that he had a surprise for me… he had hired a professional photographer to take photos of us so we could have some professional photos to commemorate our trip! To be perfectly honest I was a tad bit suspicious since I had once told Bret it would be a dream come true to get engaged in the city of romance, Paris, but I wasn’t going to over think it, or expect anything!

The day we took off for France we were ecstatic to embark on this journey together; There is just something special about sharing a foreign experience with the person you love! When we arrived in Paris we were instantly transported into a fairytale. The architecture, the energy of the city, the people, the food, and our hotel were all a dream, but I had no idea how much more enchanted this trip was about to become! On the third morning of our trip, we woke up early to get ready for our photo shoot… and when I say early I mean EARLY. I am not a morning person, but when Bret let me know that the only available time the photographer had was first thing in the morning I wasn’t going to protest. The morning was going just as every other morning goes with us; quiet, happy, and peaceful… nothing out of the ordinary or suspicious! I had picked out two outfits that I thought were very Parisian and special for a photo shoot and asked Bret which I should wear. He told me to wear the fancy red dress I had just bought because he was going to wear a suit but to bring the other option (a short pink dress) just in case the photographer thought it would look better. We were about to walk out the door and head to the shoot when Bret said, “oh wait! I have something for you!” I turned around to look at him and he was holding a pair of my dream shoes…Red Bottoms (if you know, you know)!!! I was so excited and couldn’t wait to wear them for the shoot, especially since they matched my dress perfectly! As I put them on I thought to myself, ‘that was a great surprise, nothing could possibly get better than this!’ Having let my guard down and all other suspicions go we grabbed a cab to the Eiffel Tower to meet our photographer, Ioan.

When we arrived at the cafe we were supposed to meet Ioan at the sun was just rising. IT WAS MAGICAL. Cotton candy skies, the perfect temperature, and that classic laid-back atmosphere of a Parisian morning. As we began to get acquainted Iona lead us to the Trocadero Terrace, (which has the best view of the Eiffel Tower in all of Paris) and started taking photos right away, so we didn’t waste the sunrise! She was coaching us through poses, making us laugh, and capturing all the perfect moments as I heard her say “okay guys this is the million dollar shot”! I got into my “picture perfect pose” (I get a lot of practice being a professional dancer haha) and looked over to Bret to join me and he had this huge smile across his face and a glimmer in his eyes. He took my hands and said “Danielle Beeman can I tell you something”? He started telling me how he had loved me since the day we met in college and knew that we would be together forever. He then started telling me how the past years together had been the best of his life and how he will always love me with all his heart. He then said “Danielle Beeman can I show you something” and before I knew it he was down on one knee asking me to marry him!!!!!! I was legitimately shocked. I wasn’t expecting any other surprises that day and felt like I was living in a dream! I instantly responded with “YES! A million times yes” and kneeled down to kiss him! As we stood up and he put the ring on my finger and it was the first time I had really taken a look at what is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen! The moments after were filled with teary eyes, hugs, and kisses. It was honestly the happiest moment of my life… I was engaged to my best friend!

Where to Propose in Paris!

As we started to come back to the reality of the moment Bret let me know that the following two hours were going to be an “engagement shoot” at multiple locations in Paris! We had the best time running around the city of love, capturing all the special memories we were making for the first time as an engaged couple! When the photoshoot had come to an end and just when I thought the surprises were over Bret (who never fails to out-do himself) told me that the following day we would take off to Saint Tropez for an “engagement-moon”. To say this fairytale of a trip was perfect is an understatement and was filled with moments we will never forget!

Danielle and Bret's Engagement in Paris!

Special Thanks

Iona
 | Photographer
Fran
 | Photographer