Natalie and Joshua

How We Met

Joshua and I met back in High School – we first love and High School Sweethearts – Met: 5 October 2012 and we’ve literally been together since. We were at a braai and I found myself so drawn to him, an absolute stranger amongst the crowd. Eventually, he stepped out into the middle of this social braai and introduced himself to me, in front of everyone, and that was it – I was hooked.

Marriage Proposal Ideas in Our favourite Sushi Restaurant

Natalie Van and Joshua De's Engagement in Our favourite Sushi Restaurant

How They Asked

Our engagement somehow proved to me, even more than before, that my fiancé knows me even better than I know myself.

Joshua is my high school sweetheart, my matric dance partner and my first ever love. We had just celebrated our 7 years together when he asked.

Joshua had been fishing for ideas, likes and dislikes and general desires for months, but at the same time cautioned me and said that we should focus on purchasing our first home and forget about getting engaged for now.

It was a very very busy weekend for me – I had a work event the Saturday evening that took some time to set-up and of course the week before to prepare. Turns out, while I was dancing around and entertaining guests, Joshua was asking my parents for their permission for my hand in marriage.

After that conversation and the way in which my parents made him feel as though he was already part of the family, he felt encouraged to ask me even sooner. So, the Sunday I had a quick breakfast with a friend and when I came home Joshua once again started fishing, asking for tips and advice. He was generally nervous when discussing the subject so, I thought nothing of it. Eventually, he said he feels like sushi and we should go out that evening for dinner. This had become a more frequent occurrence in the 3 months leading up to this weekend – again, I thought nothing of it. I put on some jeans, my favourite hoody, and my sneakers – my mom made a joke and said ‘comb your hair’ and I shrugged it off as her just pulling my leg as usual.

We went to the Boathouse – a restaurant near my parent’s home and we again discussed our future, Joshua still fishing for help and advice. He didn’t eat much – which was strange, but I again shrugged it off as him being tired or still full from my mother’s lunch. While waiting for the bill and drinking our final drinks he came to sit next to me and in a silent moment he looked at me and said:

“You know sometimes in life you just gotta say ‘f**ket’ and go for it? Well… Natalie, will you marry me?” and down he went on one knee.

I’m not gonna lie… I ugly cried. I solidly ugly cried while repeating ‘You’re kidding right? No… You’re lying. This is a joke. Are you serious?’.

There we were, as we always are, best friends having dinner, making jokes and just being ourselves in jeans and a hoody. No pretenses, no extra bells, and whistles, just him and I, once high school sweethearts, now soon to be Mr. and Mrs. De Stadler – I couldn’t have been any happier…