Post # 1
Hello, I’ve read boards here before but this if my first post. Any help, ideas, or advice you could give me would be greatly appreciated! I’ve been with my girlfriend for almost five years (we’ve been friends for much longer) and while we’ve talked about marriage many times, I can never come up with a decent proposal. I know it means a lot to her – she’s a hopeless romantic, a very fairy-tale kind of woman and while she’s not demanding of material things in the least, I do know she would love this to be a really special moment. My parents/relatives don’t have any proposal stories I could play off of and when I read tips on the internet, all I can think of is how/why that particular proposal style won’t work. So I guess I know in a sense what doesn’t work, but that leads me no closer to nailing down plan.
We don’t live anywhere near where we first met or really got together, so unfortunately I don’t have any of that to play off of. When I do think of things, they’re ridiculously expensive and therefore far outside my pay scale (the other unfortunate thing being that I don’t have much surplus money to spare).
The final hit is that when I first bought the ring almost two years ago, I was so excited to propose that I had already been planning on how to do it. The week after I bought it, we were talking about getting engaged and she mentioned how she didn’t want to do anything until next year. I was pretty crushed and it completely took the wind out of my sails. I haven’t planned anything since, feeling that maybe I’m jumping the gun or getting too carried away again. But we’ve done a lot of growing in that time and the longer time passes, the more I feel I’m just waiting for the world to line up “just right.” But the world doesn’t work that way, and even if we’re going to have a long engagement before we’re able to marry, we’re ready to take that next step.
Thanks for listening, Wedding Bees – I have very few people to talk to about this! She’s an archaeologist, loves horses, Disney, especially Beauty and the Beast, Cetlic things, Western things, and Les Miserables. Any thoughts on how to make an affordable proposal that a fairy-tale girl will love?
Here’s a picture of the ring. It’s white topaz, but someday I hope I can give her a diamond, which I know is what she truly wants.
Post # 3
I probably made this too long. The short version is, I’m lost on how to plan a proposal. I want it to be
Romantic (think fairy-tale romance, she loves disney and theatre)
Private to semi-private
Neither in the home nor involving travel/vacation
My imagination can only come up with elaborate proposals while in reality I have limited funds.
Any thoughts, wonderful Wedding Bees?
Post # 4
@LadyCapricorn: First off, that ring is awesome. I adore the celtic knot work. Good job!
What else does she like? What do you guys like to do together? What is the weather like where you are at?
Just off the top of my head:
A planetarium would be cool. You could propose while looking at the stars. You could also come up with a pretty neat speech with that theme.
A museum of some kind, in their most romantic room. Also a good theme for speech writing.
What about a night away at a nice bed and breakfast close by if possible? That wouldn’t necessarily require too much travel or funds.
A romantic picnic(maybe with horse back riding)? This would depend on your location though.
After a play or dinner theater? You said she likes theater.
I know I came across a post by another Bee that said her dream proposal was to be presented a kitted with the ring around its collar. Not for everyone, but I thought that was adorable.
I’m just throwing these things out there. My husband is awesome, but my proposal was lame, so I have no experience to draw from, LOL.
Keep us posted on what you decide!
Edit: DUH! A horse drawn carriage maybe? I’m not sure if you could set that up where you live, but that would be romantic, and she likes horses!
Post # 5
Thanks for the compliment on the ring!
We do have a little hound dog we adopted that we love dearly. I’ve seen some people including their animals in the asking, but I think I’d like to do more with him than tie the ring on his collar (especially as he’s not the most graceful dog and will somehow manage to lose/eat it!)
She told me yesterday about a nice restaurant she really wants to eat at, but I’m hesitant to do the actual asking at the restaurant as that might be a little too public. Maybe as a celebration place after I ask or somewhere to eat beforehand?
I could do a carriage ride around an attraction here. There are horseback riding places but they’re a little pricey for just couples.
We first met at a theatre camp when we were just teenagers. I remember the exact day I knew I wanted to marry her a few years back. I was thinking about doing it around sunset because I think I want to include that moment in the speech, and it was at sunrise after being up all night and I want to harken back to that in reverse.
I know I probably sound so disjointed!
Post # 6
@LadyCapricorn: I think its really great you are putting so much thought into this. What about proposing in the horse drawn carriage before dinner at the restaraunt? That would be so romantic!
Post # 7
Beautiful ring! Very similar to mine! 🙂
Are you still close to the theatre camp where you met? Take a walk through the woods at camp and tell her about the day you knew she was the one. If it was during a camp session maybe the camp would help?
Post # 8
The most elaborate on a budget and romantuc proposal I ever heard of was from a friend… so I will share it with you, not sure if it is what you are looking for but very sure it would makea girl swoon!
If there is any way you can be home before her, do it. That is the most imporatant part to friend pulled into her driveway and when she got out of the car noticed a trail of hershy kisses leading her to the front door. There was a note there with a sweet little memory about jow they first met or something… more kisses lead her to the bathroom where she could hear wter running curtain open with some roses tied to the shower head. Another note telling her that there was a surprise in the bedroom.
Opens the door, there is candles and one last note stating: now that I’ve kissed the ground you walk on and showered you in roses, turn around. She did and there he was down on one knee ready to ask his question.
It seriously makes me even tear up a little when I think about it and it wasnt my proposal lol.
Post # 9
@LadyCapricorn: Gorgeous ring!
Don’t overthink it- it’s SO sweet that you’re so excited and want it to be so perfect, but believe me, the most magical part is hearing that the person you love wants to spend the rest of his life with you, so everything else? Icing.
Some of the sweetest (but still free/cheap) proposal stories I’ve heard involve things like hiding the ring somewhere to be found (one guy sent pics of them in to Jones soda company and had his friends vote till they got on one of the labels, then put the ring and a proposal in one of the empty bottles and half-buried in on the beach before a walk. He made sure she “found” it and voila, proposal.)
Other sweet ideas include treasure hunt style clues, or enlisting the help of friends (either for a treasure hunt or to bring out some element of surprise before/after the proposal, perhaps with a camera to get a pic).
That said? My proposal was my boyfriend taking a break from cooking my favorite dinner, picking me up and putting me on his lap, and asking. And I said yes and then we had an amazing dinner and talked about wedding plans. It was great, I was over the moon, and there wasn’t a single glass of champagne, firework, or bended knee involved.
She’ll be happy no matter how you do it, as long as it’s clear you mean it, is all I’m saying.
edit to add: It sounds like maybe she’s a little shy, so I think your inclination to stay away from public spectacles is wise. I also think they put a lot of pressure on the person being asked- I wanted to ask my boyfriend some pretty important and serious questions immediately after and I would not have been comfortable doing so if there had been a cheering crowd.
Post # 10
@LadyCapricorn: I love that ring!
I imagine its incredibly stressful for anyone looling to propose, but my uggestion is to not get so caught up in the details and everything being perfect. Plean a nice romantic night out and let the proposal happen when it feels right, so it doens’t seem scripted.
When FI proposed, we were walking through the park holding hands and talking, then he asked if I would marry him. It was really sweet and special, even though to him he wished he would have done something more extravagent.
Post # 11
@peace747: That is a seriously sweet story 🙂 Why can’t all men be that romantic?
Post # 12
@Bridey77: lol right?! But hey they try! 🙂
Post # 13
So I’ve been giving more thought to this and I’ve narrowed it down to a few dates and a few more ideas.
Date 1: Our anniversary – it will be our fifth year together and I’d have a reason to celebrate/plan things so she wouldn’t get too suspicious (she likes to be surprised)
Date 2: Either on her birthday, or the day after her birthday – the morning after her birthday was the exact moment I realized I was in love and wanted to marry her.
I especially need to step things up because I had the most *wonderful* valentine’s day. She got up early and laid a rose and a small bear by my pillow, and when I woke up she greeted me in the kitchen with a card, three more roses, and chocolates. Then at dinner she presented me with a beautiful turquoise necklace and (non-e) ring which I love.
My ideas are these; I’m pretty sure I want to do dinner at the nice French restaurant in town. She loves manicures but they’re an extra expense we don’t ever do so I want to arrange for her to have her nails done beforehand. The scavenger hunt idea is adorable but I don’t think I could pull it off by myself, and we don’t have a lot of friends or family down here.
On to the problems…Before or after dinner? If I do it beforehand we can celebrate, but I don’t know if she’d be too distracted to go out still. If I do it afterwards, I’ll need to get her somewhere where I can do it (I tried to think of how to do it at the restaurant but I don’t know if that would work for us).
And location is important. If I try to wait for the “right” moment I know I just won’t be able to recognize it and will let it pass by and before I know it the day will be over. We don’t have a lot of romantic or special spots we frequent – no “first date” or landmark places in our relationship that I could draw from. There’s a small bridge near the local college which is supposed to be romantic but it may be overdone, occupied, not lit up at night, etc. Then there’s a beautiful square we like to walk in a lot, with shops all around it that gets lit up at night, but it may or may not have a lot of tourists around. Going a bit further down the pedestrian-only road, it’s usually more deserted at night but less well-lit.