How We Met
Jordan is from Birmingham, Alabama and I am originally from Connecticut, but moved to Sarasota, Florida when I was young. I have lived in Orlando, FL since I graduated from University of Florida 7 years ago, go gators! I work for a construction management company as an engineer and am involved in a lot of related organizations. I had invited some friends from another construction company to a free networking event. They arrive and mention that Jordan is coming, I look at them bewildered and ask “who is Jordan” since they have never mentioned him. Then Jordan walked in and he was handsome with the kindest eyes. We started talking and realized we had a lot in common: we both went to SEC colleges – I went to University of Florida and he went to Auburn University which coincidentally are similar school colors, we both graduated in the downturn of the construction market so we worked for professors and went to Grad School.
The reason my friends had never mentioned him is that he had recently moved to Orlando from Birmingham. This meant he still had his long southern drawl, which I loved! But dating him also went against the rule I had against dating someone in the construction industry. I didn’t want to go from being independently known in the industry to just “so and so’s girlfriend/wife” as I have worked hard at my career in a male dominated industry. Apparently I couldn’t resist this kind sole, we talked all night and he teased me for having two phones, a work phone and a personal phone while we were there. We had exchanged business cards, you know since we were at a networking event. A week later he texted my work cell phone and asked for my “bat phone number”. As they say, the rest is history.
how they asked
First – I am so excited to be able to share my story as I have been a follower since Stacy Tasman now Stahl started the website. She was a grade below me at the same school growing up. I never thought I’d get to share my story and I am amazed at all the Stacy has accomplished, I love reading all these happy stories. The story – All I can say is Jordan got me good, he knows I love surprises but he isn’t always the best at keeping secrets. For Christmas, Jordan surprised me with Broadway show tickets to see a new one coming out called Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
He knows I love them and he had never been to New York City. I have been to New York City quite a bit since my one and only Grandma lives in Connecticut, we frequently do day trips. The trip was scheduled for June 1, as the trip came closer I started trying to plan what we would do while there. Since I knew the most about NYC and it was #JordansNYCadventure, I figured I would do most of the planning. I had asked what his top must do’s are and he wasn’t very helpful. When we plan trips we typically plan together and both help, his lack of help was frustrating.
Luckily one of my best friends lives in the city and she helped me plan out what we should do each day and provided a lengthy list of restaurants. We got a great hotel and started our trip following the plan I had made with my friend. I must note that Jordan is not good at keeping secrets, he planned a surprise 30th birthday dinner with my family and friends. He was so worried I would figure it out that he didn’t talk to me all day on my actual birthday. I was so upset because everyone else was busy so I ended up washing my car and taking the pup to the dog park. So needless to say he can’t keep a secret. We had been talking about getting engaged in near future and I was curious how he would be able to surprise me since I LOVE surprises. We were three days into the trip, so I figured he wouldn’t have been able to hide it so it would have already happened. He was quieter during the trip, but NYC is overwhelming and exhausting so I didn’t think anything of it. That morning he mentions wanting to go to some Italian restaurant, one that wasn’t on the list my friend provided.
I was a brat and said I guess we can go. We go all over downtown that day, come back to change at hotel for dinner. Coincidentally a friend and her fiance from Orlando were also in town. We had a plan to meet them at Top of the Rock before dinner and then meet them at a rooftop bar afterwards. She tried to get me to wear something nicer, but I didn’t because the next night we were going to Peter Lugers Steakhouse and I only had one dress. He looks nice in a jacket and we head to Top of the Rock, he has the ring in his jacket pocket and panics going through the metal detector but I am oblivious because we are looking for our friends. My friend thought he was proposing on Top of the Rock so every time she took our photo was getting prepared. Then as we are leaving someone proposed there and she thought uh oh he missed his chance. Well he had something different planned all along. We go to dinner at Maialinos by Gramercy Park, he is quiet most of the dinner.
He said he was tired, so thought nothing of it. Then he ordered an extra glass of wine, still didn’t think anything of it. We go to leave and typically in NYC you never know when you are going to see a bathroom next so we both go use the restroom on the way out. I beat him for once and wait for him outside. He comes from another door and mentions that the waitress told him about a cool park where there are only a few keys. The Gramercy hotel concierge, Carlos, was going to let us in. He went on to explain the history of the park, which is really interesting.
We walk around to the right and its all small talk, I can tell something is up. He gets so serious about the smallest things I thought oh maybe he’s going to ask me to move in with him. Since we met we both bought homes within half a mile of each other and our roommates were moving out in a couple weeks. Then he holds my shoulders and starts telling me how much he cares for me and how he loves how much I love my family and friends and for that and a million tiny things, then he got down on one knee.
I couldn’t believe it, I even asked if he was serious. In true Jordan fashion he struggled to get the ring out of the tiny pocket of the jacket, as he is rather clumsy. I started giggling and ugly crying and gave him the biggest hug.
We had gone to Seattle a couple weeks before so I made him watch Sleepless in Seattle for the first time and he used part of his line from the movie, a million tiny things. My heart melts just thinking back to that moment, he wanted something private and he found the only private park in a big city.
We sat on a park bench for a little while to be in the moment, then walked around the park. I see someone taking our photo from outside the park but then they take pictures of the trees and bushes, I thought it was weird but you see people in NYC taking photos of everything. As we are leaving the park, I suggest we take a photo and he says well lets just walk over here. I see the same photographer walking towards us, I think to myself oh he hired someone to takes pictures. She takes off her scarf and it is his younger sister Meg! I ugly cry again, it was a wonderful surprise.
Then we go into the hotels bar to celebrate with a drink, I walk in to find my mom Karen, his mom Karen, (yet another similarity) and my Aunt and Uncle sitting there. I ugly cry for the third time. He surprised me three times, I couldn’t believe it! My bff in NYC came to meet us for dinner/drinks too so we could all celebrate. It all made sense now, he was so busy planning this wonderful proposal with my family and friends he didn’t have time to plan any part of the trip. I felt so cherished and loved in that moment, I couldn’t stop smiling and I still can’t. To top it off we had already planned to see my Dad and Grandma in Connecticut.
He works up there sometimes so we all took the train the next morning and my 91 year old Grandma got to meet him for the first time. She told him shes been waiting a long time for this! He knows how important she and my family are to me, it was perfect. My sisters and one of my best friends in Orlando had known for months and helped with the planning. Looking back at certain comments they made, its shocking I didn’t figure it out sooner. I’m so glad I broke my own rules of dating someone in the construction industry and I can’t wait for our adventure together. He’s happy because now he doesn’t have to surprise me for awhile.