The love of my life, Landon Kanillopoolos, has asked me to marry him!!! Of course, I said YES!!!
Would you like to hear our story? Because I love tellin’ it!! (those who know how we met and stuff, you can skip to the end if you want to hear how he proposed!)
Landon and I met at an ASL (American Sign Language) Bible meeting on April 23, 2007. He seemed nice, and was super tall, and his last name had “cantaloupe” in it. ^-^ But I wasn’t looking for a relationship, and although I had my eye on him, I wasn’t thinking to much about it. He, meanwhile, thought about me a lot….
A few months later, I was preparing to go to Guyana, South America, to teach the Bible for a month with my best friend, Abigail. On October 28th, I was interveiwed about the upcoming trip at an assembly of Bible teachers. Landon was there- and while I was being interveiwed, he jumped up from his seat and ran over to his parents, and told them “that’s the girl! That’s the girl I told you about!!” …I love this man XD
So afterward, he knew he had to come talk to me… he was afraid he wouldn’t see me again… so, he comes up and says hello! Well, he liked me, and I was still uninterested…. and let’s just say… boys aren’t subtle. XD He told me if I gave him my number, he could call me and let me know when the ASL group was switching to a new book, and I went “How about you give me YOUR number, and I’ll call you.” :/ He figured he’d never see me again…
And for a year, he was right!
Finally, on September 17, 2008, I was sending out a mass TXT to invite the Bible teachers I knew to a teaching day… and although I wasn’t going to invite him at first, that TXT got deleted half-way through. I was so frustrated having to type it all out again that when I got to his name in my contact list, I sighed at said to myself, “If he likes me, it’s his problem”, and included him.
He came for the day, and we ended up seeing a lot of each other. He came out to help my dad fix the roof.. he came to see City of Ember with my friends and I…. he came to my parent’s annual hayride…and soon we were TXTing or calling each other every day, finding out what we thought about things and what our life goals were… I finally realized that he was a wonderful, hilarious guy and that I wanted to be more than friends
So one night, as we sat around the fire at a friend’s party, I knew I had something to say. Since Landon and I both LOVE books (he works at the library <3!!!), I told him I had a book he should borrow, and at the end of the night, we headed out to the parking lot. After I gave him the book, we chatted for a while, until I couldn’t take it anymore…
“So, not to be awkward, but I have a question.”
“We’ve been hanging out a lot, and TXTing each other every day, and talking on the phone… and that’s dating. I want to know where you stand on that.”
“…” The was a brief pause- Landon told me later his brain had imploded, and while he tried to get himself together, he was thinking “Words! I should have words now!!”
Until finally he smiled and said “Well, that’s fine with me!”
“That’s fine with me too!”
We never looked back. That first week, we got together and laid out all the deal breakers: we both went into dating knowing we were looking for a permanent commitment. We were looking for someone to marry and spend a life with. So, we made sure of the big things before we got too involved- kids or not? What do you want to do with your life? etc…
There’s been so many memories made and lessons learned… from the day he drove an hour to give me rose on a bad day at work, to going sledding with our friends late at night, to Dr.Who marathons, to that first kiss, first Red Wings game, first photobooth session…
I’m going to spend the rest of my life loving him, and building a life with him. <3
Which brings us to the question: how did he propose?!?
First of all, keep in mind that we had been discussing wedding plans for a while, and that we had started dating with the intention of figuring out if we wanted to marry each other. So when David’s Bridal had a $100 dress sale, I asked Landon what he thought (this was the 22nd of May)… and he said I should go and look. (I have my dress on order, and finding it was a very interesting story XD I’ll have a post about it soon)
Little did I know, at this point he had the rings.
So, like we do every week, we were talking about plans for the next week. Since Landon lives in Lansing, about an hour from me, we take turns going back and forth to visit. Landon had asked me if I could come up on Thursday the 28th, and we would do some teaching and visit some gardens… he said for me to bring my camera, the flowers there were beautiful. I suspected something was up, but to be honest, I had thought that before, so I figured I wouldn’t think about it.
Well, the time gets closer, and problems started to creep up. I had to shuffle students around to make it on Thursday- and then, I found out that my car needed, not just an alignment, but a new tierod!! (Yeah, not going to pretend I know what that is or how to spell it, but I know it’s bad) So there I was on Wednesday, crying over the phone to Landon that I couldn’t make it Thursday- my parents had previous plans and couldn’t lend me their cars, and my friends were in a simular situation.
So, instead of saying, “don’t worry, we’ll just figure out another day”, Landon goes: “I have an idea. Let me call you back.”
So Landon calls his parents, who had rented a cabin out by my house (about five minutes away, actually! They live in Mason), and asked his mom if I could use their van for Wednesday and Thursday- stranding them.
They said of course.
So Landon calls me back and lets me know. His mom drives over and gets me, I take her back to the cabin and head out to Lansing, to Pat Debois’ house. (She is a lovely person for letting me stay with her all the time! Plus her house is beautiful! I also stay a lot with Sue Baker- she’s awesome!) And Thursday morning, I wake up to a TXT from Landon, like usual, and off I go to meet up with him at the Kingdom Hall to start out day.
But, when I walk in, I’m greeted not by Landon, but a giant stuffed cow! O.o He’s sitting on the counter, alongside a cup of B’s coffee (my favorite kind, of course ^-^), a card, and a red rose.
So, I open the card and it says “To my dearest love, Heather: There has been a change of plans… meet me at the library… directions and money for the meter are included… please hurry… and don’t forget your coffee. Your love, Landon. PS- happy seven month [dating] anniversary! I love you so much, always and forever.”
So of course I jump in the car, hugging my new stuffed cow and smiling like mad, and drive to the Lansing capital library. I walk in, and Landon is standing there, looking rather nervous… but when he sees me, he breaks into a grin. We hug and kiss and he hands me another rose, and he grabs my hand- and we’re off running! Across the main room!! Through the “employees only door”!! Dow the hall! Into the book burrow!! And eventually we stop in front of a door… the rare book room. For those who don’t know, this is a room closed to the public which holds the really expensive/rare special books that you’re not allowed to breathe on.
When we walk in, “At Last” by Etta James is playing in a CD player in the corner, and there are dozens of roses in vases…
So we walk over to the bookshelf in the corner, and Landon says “There’s a book I want you to see.”
He pulls from the bookshelf a scrapbook, and on it’s cover is “How to be Deliriously Happy”.
I open the book…
And immediately, I start to cry.
Landon gets down on his knee and tells me that he loves me and wants to spend his life with me.
“Will you marry me?”
“Of course I will!!!!”
I burst into tears anew and throw my arms around him! Now, I had brought my camera (um. Duh. XD), and it turns out that Joe, Landon’s co-worker, was watching through the window of the room. So he came in and I set the camera settings, and he took photos of us! (Poor Joe was crying, too!)
So, after Landon shooed Joe away, we danced in the book room as I listened to Landon’s story of the rings and the book. Turns out, Landon (after searching high and low) had found the engagement ring and wedding band- and had kept them for a month while waiting for the book to arrive and the cover to be engraved! He says many times he wanted to just forget the book and ask me (it was killing him!), but he wanted so badly for it to be special…
The scrapbook is filled with our dating- TXT messages we sent, photographs of us, stories and memories. On two pages, he wrote out some of our most special or important times together…you see, Landon jots down on his calender important things that happen. Which is how he could do these pages….
So, after we leave the library, we head out to the English Inn, in Eaton Rapids. (www.englishinn.com they are AWSOME) Since they weren’t open just yet, we wandered the beautiful grounds and I got a chance to take some photographs!
By the way, in case you’re wondering: THE RING IS AMAZING!!!! I told Landon I wanted a ring with character, with a story. So he search everywhere- pawn shops and vintage stores… his co-worker, Joe, who is MADLY in love with his wife, heard about this and mentioned that he had some awesome rings his wife doesn’t use. Landon figured he would humor him, (thinking, what are the chances?) and told Joe what he was looking for. Instead of showing Landon a bunch of rings, he brought in one.
Landon knew right away that it was The Ring. It’s white gold, with one large stone and four smaller, two on each side, and a strip of yellow gold on each side. It looks brand new, but had a story!
The wedding band matches beautifully, even though Landon bought it at a completely different place! It’s from 1919 (we started dating on the 19th!!) and set with mine-cut diamonds. (They don’t mine cut anymore!) I’ll have to get a photograph up…
We had an amazing lunch!! I had the duck with cherry sauce, and Landon had the Lobster stuffed walleye (I think? Mine was so good I didn’t care about his XD).
The dessert was.. WOW… it was perfect. <3!!!!
After lunch, we toured the rooms and grounds…
Finally, we headed back to the cabin where Brenda and Kevin (Landon’s parents) were staying. (calling all of our family and friends on the way!) My parents (Robin and Tim) joined us, and we spent the night visiting and planning (and watching half of “The Father of the Bride”! XD we thought it was appropriate). Later that night, at our Bible meeting, we were swamped with friends congratulating us and laughing and crying… it was a perfect day.
And it’s just the beginning. <3