Natalie and Dane

Image 1 of Natalie and Dane

How We Met

Dane and I met in high school. He was the cute, younger boy and I had admired him from afar. My senior year we started dating despite the fact I was moving off to college in a few short months. We prayed and talked about what the future of “us” might look like and feared the distance would be too difficult. However, one long year apart went quicker than expected and Dane found himself at the same college as me the next year. College was my favorite chapter of us thus far. Football games, walks around campus and finding a new balance together was incredible. I graduated last year and began my first year of teaching. I left subtle hints (let’s be real, for the past 6 years) about how ready I was to get engaged! Dane continually gave me a pretend timeline (in which he said he added a few weeks every time I asked). The timeline was *2-20 years* when I first started asking. Little did I know how close the proposal of my dreams was!

Image 2 of Natalie and Dane

how they asked

It is my first year of teaching and I was taking a spring break get away with my best friends to visit our friend in New York City! I knew it would be an exciting trip! Little did I know that behind the scenes there was a lot more work going on between Dane and my family. They had planned to surprise me at the end of my trip in Central Park with a beautiful engagement with family surrounding us.

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However, one of New York’s biggest blizzard’s came in that week and my friends and I were stuck in New York…no flights in and no flights out! Dane was in Texas panicking and scrambling to solve this problem, I had no idea. My friends and I spent time shopping, eating and exploring New York in the snow. Meanwhile, Dane was trying to get himself and our families to New York by any means possible for the perfect proposal.

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At one point he was even looking up trains! On Thursday, the day before the actual proposal Dane decided change the plans. He replanted the entire engagement overnight to be at the Dallas Arboretum! He had to figure out how to get my family and myself there without causing any suspicion. I thought he was in Colorado skiing with friends for spring break, I didn’t question anything. When I arrived at Dallas (after a flight cancellation and 3 delays..) My sister, my mom and I pampered ourselves!

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We got new outfits, got our hair done and spent the day treating ourselves! They played it off as if we are going to a fancy dinner. On our way to our dinner we stopped at the Arboretum to view the Texas Tulips that were in bloom. We wandered around for a good 20 minutes or so before finding a roped off spot. My sister said “let’s go this way!” As we entered the most beautiful spot that was quiet by the water I turned the corner to see Dane standing all alone, the most handsome I’ve ever seen. As I walked to him with tears in my eyes, I couldn’t believe it! As he got down on one knee he told me the sweetest words I’ve ever been told! It was the most perfect day of my life! And hey, now we can say not even in New York blizzard can keep us apart.

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Special Thanks

Matt Esparza
 | Photographer