Ericka and Ryan

How We Met

From Ericka: Ryan and I met at the produce section in Target. Ryan is color blind so that hinders his ability to tell when some fruits are ripe. I happened to be standing by the banana section when this very handsome man with blue eyes and blonde hair walks up to me and asks if the bananas were green or yellow. I thought he was joking, but he was completely serious with a slight twinkle in his eye. Ryan then proceeded to ask me to dinner and the rest is history!

From Ryan: We met at Target in the grocery section! I was looking at bananas and because I’m colorblind I usually ask a store member, which bananas are ripe. Ericka happened to be walking by and I asked her if the bunch of bananas I was holding was yellow. She said yes hesitantly and as a question like why are you asking that. I explained that I was colorblind and then asked if I could make her dinner for helping me out. It was the best decision that I have ever made and we haven’t looked back since.

how they asked

From Ryan: It started by me showing up at her doorstep in Minnesota. I had a dozen roses and I called her. I explained that a package was just delivered to her apartment and she should go downstairs, so someone wouldn’t steal the package. She explained that she had gone out to dinner and wouldn’t be back for over an hour. I asked where she was eating and surprised her there. The next morning I explained that we’d go to the mall before going to watch the Kentucky basketball game. Ericka said, “The super bowl is here, and the mall is going to be packed.” I don’t think I want to go. Luckily her sister knew the plan and explained that we’d get there before the crowd and it would be fine.

We arrived and I said let’s check out the aquarium because I know Ericka loves aquariums! We did the tour and I had Ericka’s sister texting with the photographer the whole time. Ericka would know something was up if I was texting. We passed the photographer and entered the tunnel. I explained that we had gone on a lot of adventures and that I needed someone to go on the adventure of a lifetime with. I got on one knee and asked her to marry me.

We called her parents first. Her father said well it’s about time. Her mom didn’t answer. We then called my parents and shared the good news. After several hours, she finally got ahold of her mom and shared the good news. She was super excited for us.

From Ericka: Ryan surprised me by driving up from Indiana to Minnesota where I live. The night before the proposal, Ryan said we were going to go on an adventure. I didn’t think that was anything out of the ordinary so I was all for it. Saturday morning rolls around and Ryan mentions that we should go to the Sea Life Aquarium at the Mall of America. A little side note, I love aquariums! Whenever Ryan and I go on vacation, I always look to see if there are any aquariums in the area. I was a little skeptical about his idea, though, because it was Super Bowl weekend and I was worried about the crowds. After some convincing from Ryan, I agreed to go.

We got to the aquarium and all seemed normal. Looking back on the day, there were a few things that Ryan and my sister, Taylor (who helped orchestrate the proposal), were doing that seemed a little off. We were approaching the aquarium tunnel. Ryan and I were holding hands and I was trying to walk forward but he kept pulling me back. I just kept thinking “What the heck. I want to see the rest of the fish!” At that point, he got down on one knee and popped the question! I said yes! Little did I know, Ryan had hired Laura to capture the special moment! Ryan and my sister did so well with keeping it a secret. He was so calm throughout the day. I knew a proposal was happening in the next couple months, but I was not expecting it that day. I can honestly say that I was taken by surprise! Knowing that I get to spend the rest of my life with my best friend, I have never been more happy! Many phone calls were made that day!

Of our immediate families, my Mom was the last to know despite trying to call her first. Of all days to shut off her phone, this was apparently the day. Eight hours later, we were finally able to contact her! I was then able to tell the rest of my relatives and friends of the news.

I never really thought of having a professional photographer take proposal pictures, but I am so incredibly happy that Laura was there! The proposal seemed to happen so fast that it’s hard to remember what and how it happened. I’m so thankful that we have pictures to remind us of such a special day! Laura was so great! Her energy and presence was such a great addition to the day. I couldn’t be happier with the pictures!

Special Thanks

Sea Life Minnesota Aquarium - Mall of America
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