Maryanne and Thomas

Marriage Proposal Ideas in Richmond, Virginia

How We Met

Thomas and I were set up on a blind date in March,

2018. I was having one of the worst possible days, and a friend of mine suggested I work from home at her apartment in Arlington, Virginia so we could start our weekend early. We ended up “working from home” at the local Irish Pub while enjoying a few cold ones. Later that evening my friend admitted that she canceled a date for that night so that she could stay with me for emotional support. I wasn’t having it and refused to let her cancel her date, and she refused to leave me alone – so the next logical solution was to bring me along. I wasn’t too thrilled with the idea of being the third wheel on a date, but knew this wasn’t a battle I would win – so I went. It was only after I agreed to go that she told me her date was bringing his roommate along – great, I’m the third wheel AND I’m on a blind date, and even less thrilled- but I got in the uber anyways. We went to a place called “Del Ray Pizza” in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia.

Wedding Proposal Ideas in Richmond, Virginia

That is the first time Thomas and I ever saw each other. I thought he was cute, but I wasn’t in the “mood to date.” He will tell you it was love at first sight. Anyways, the night went on and we bar hopped our way through Northern Virginia and back to my friend’s apartment where I fell asleep on the couch and Thomas held my hand the entire night [swoon]. He later got up the courage to ask for my telephone number the next morning and the four of us made plans to go out in Washington, D.C. later that Saturday. We met up, bar hopped and ended up at an underground place called Rocket Bar where we played darts and I watched the UNC v. Duke basketball game. It was at this bar that we had our first kiss.

Proposal Ideas Richmond, Virginia

The next day I returned to my townhouse and I realized I missed Thomas – this man I had only known for about 48 hours, so I texted him and asked if he wanted to help me clean my house. Looking back, I was not as smooth as I thought I was. He said yes and we ended up ordering dinner and watching movies all night. The rest is history. Thomas asked me to be his girlfriend with a dozen red roses and five months later we spent the weekend in Richmond visiting my friends, and a month after that we were closing on our first home together, adopting the cutest pup, and starting our lives.

Shortly after we moved to Richmond, Thomas started the last leg of his training with the Washington, D.C. Fire Department and had to move back to Northern Virginia for four months. I had convinced myself that the proposal would happen on either our one year anniversary (it did not) or at Thomas’ graduation (nope!). What did happen was completely out of the left field and one of the best days of my life.

How They Asked

I had woken up sicker than I had been in years and called out of work in the middle of the week, Thomas was still in Northern Virginia and I was left to my own devices. I returned to work [and slightly back to normal] that Thursday when a friend of mine asked me to go shopping with her after work on Friday. She was heading to Florida for a work conference and wanted some new summer clothes. I agreed, and plans were made. Friday morning came and I was still not feeling well, I texted my friend from work and asked to reschedule to Saturday morning. (Turns out this was not the first time, but the third time I canceled my own engagement and had no idea).

Where to Propose in Richmond, Virginia

That Saturday I woke up, barely brushed my hair, put on my Saturday clothes and met my friend at the store. She tried on countless dresses while I sipped my tea and gave my opinions. While we were there Thomas texted me asking if Jessie could come, pick up a video game for her husband Matt. Confused as to why Matt couldn’t do it himself I questioned Thomas and he just told me “this was easier because I was already with Jessie.” I then tossed around the idea of Matt and Jessie coming over for the UVA v. Auburn basketball game. When Jessie called Matt he was adamant that they not come over that night. Confused, I just assumed Matt was upset about something and I began to wonder if Thomas and Matt had an arrangement the women didn’t know about and that was why Matt wouldn’t go over to pick up the video game. Honestly, this is what my thought process was the entire afternoon – I had no clue my life was about to change.

Jessie and I left the store and drove to my house to pickup the video game. When we pulled into the driveway I froze, I don’t think I turned off my car or even took a breath. Covering our front porch was dozens of rose petals and a card was taped to the front door. I heard my friend say “you need to get out of the car now.” and then the sound of her camera – she was in on it the entire time! There was no video game, and the shopping trip was a ploy to get me out of the house!

I walked up to the front steps, read the card, and opened the door to find our song [“Can’t Help Falling in Love” – UB40] playing, more rose petals, and more cards. As I followed the path laid out for me, I eventually reached our back door. When I opened it I saw Thomas standing there, dressed up and surrounded by even more rose petals – and I knew. My tears started and I was just in shock.

Thomas said a lot of amazing, wonderful, loving things to me that I wish I could remember, and then he dropped to one knee and asked me to spend forever with him. I said yes through tears and disbelief and he slipped the most beautiful ring on my finger. A ring that he designed by himself and used the diamond passed down from his grandmother as the center stone.

We popped champagne, Face Timed our families, and celebrated our engagement with our friends and March Madness Basketball. It was the most amazingly beautiful Saturday, and the proposal happened just like I always wanted it to – on a random day, completely unexpected, without any pressure. Not a holiday, not a birthday, just a day – completely about us.

Special Thanks

Wes Shinn
Photographer