Kayla and Niko

Image 1 of Kayla and Niko

How We Met

Niko and I officially met in 2010. We had the same group of friends and I knew who he was…but I had little to no interest in him. We were total opposites! He was a rule-breaker and I grew up a rule follower-I thought he would get me in trouble so I was nice to him but I kept my distance. I spent practically that whole summer in Alaska and we would talk a couple of times off and on but It wasn’t until I got back home to Washington that I realized he was interested in me. Turns out he was super nice and less of a hellion than I thought! He’s sweet, funny, kind..all of the good things, We started dating November of 2010 and the rest, as they say, is history. I knew Niko had planned on proposing back in May. We had this epic trip all planned out, but COVID changed all of that.

How They Asked

I had been to Glacier by myself earlier in the summer. I did a day backpacking trip to Snyder lake and I KNEW Niko would love it (minus the bears) as much as I did. It didn’t take much convincing so we made a plan, hopped on a flight from SEA to FCA, and were on our way. The day he proposed we went white water rafting. Afterward, Niko and I drove around the park to check things out and take some photos. At one point, a woman offered to take a picture for us and asked if we were getting engaged. Niko just smiled at her and said “soon”. I thought it was sweet but didn’t think anything else about it after that. We knew we wanted to find a nice spot to watch the Sunset. After some searching, we ended up at Lake McDonald.

Image 2 of Kayla and Niko

There were a couple of Kayaking in the water and a few others setting up their camera gear to take photos of the sunset. There was also a handful of people sitting along the beach. We lucked out and found a nice little spot under a tree where no one else was really around. The tree that we were sitting under has so many tiny pinecones. I thought they were SO CUTE so I picked one up to show Niko. I ended up getting sap all over my hands, so I walked down the lake to wash it off. When I started walking back up, Niko said to stay over there because he wanted to take a picture.

Image 3 of Kayla and Niko

As he was walking over to me he said “Oh no someone fell in” so, of course, I looked back. I thought it was weird because I didn’t hear anything in the water and I had been standing right there. By the time I turned my head and saw the couple in the Kayak was fine, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I KNEW THIS HAD TO BE IT! It only took a second for me to shoot my head back and when I looked to make eye contact with Niko, he was already on one knee. I totally lost it and started crying. I was so overwhelmed with pure joy and excitement.

Image 4 of Kayla and Niko

I was in shock that a moment I had dreamed about my whole life was finally here. It was happening. I wish I could remember everything he said but the one thing I won’t ever forget is him asking “Are you ready to be Mrs. Estella”? YES. I. AM! After almost 10 years together I am beyond ready lol. He knows my heart and how much I love the outdoors. He chose the perfect spot and asked me with the perfect ring. He knew how important it was to me that he asked for my parents’ blessing and he did just that about two weeks before we left. A lot of people over the years have given us a hard time for waiting so long but we had our reasons. It was important for us to be finically stable and independent on our own first. I’d be lying if I said I never felt like I was falling behind everyone else at times but I wouldn’t change a single thing. It was perfect. He’s my best friend and I can’t wait to see what our future holds. The best things in life really are worth waiting for. Even if it almost takes an entire decade :)

Image 5 of Kayla and Niko

Image 6 of Kayla and Niko