John: It all started with my New Year’s resolution to do something new each month. I had told Rachel I wanted to snowboard (I always ski) for March’s task, so we started planning a ski trip early January. Little did she know the actual new thing I'd set out to do that month was propose. We asked a good group of mutual friends from all over Texas to join us on our spring break vacation, and I’ll admit that I enticed some to take the very long drive by telling them my plans to propose.
Rachel: Let me start by saying that I am rather stubborn and a big fan of planning ahead, so I usually do not like surprises. Therefore, I knew in advance that John was going to have to be very sneaky in order to pull this off. I had a feeling that John was planning on popping the question on a ski trip that we were planning, but he was not giving away any clues! I had to force myself not to snoop but still found myself analyzing all of our conversations in the months leading up to the trip, trying to find out more of the plan. Somehow, when it came time for the trip to start, I had already convinced myself that I was overthinking everything and that he probably wouldn’t be proposing this weekend. Then, one of my dear friends showed up at the cabin we had booked the first night of the trip and instead of thinking, “Okay awesome! Now I know he’s going to propose,” I thought, “Oh, so this must be why he was acting a little sneaky! He was inviting her as the surprise!” Clueless.
Rachel: The next day was spent falling on my butt unsuccessfully trying to remember how to snowboard. Because our group was comprised of different levels of skiers as well as (attempting) boarders, we went separate ways down the mountain but vowed that we would meet at the top for a group picture before the lift closed for the day. Exhausted, bruised and partially frozen, we headed to the peak. I was still analyzing my snowboarding strategy at the end of the day, and the potential for proposal was nowhere near the forefront of my mind.
John: We were on the slopes all day and right before the resort closed we decided we would meet before the lift closed for a "group picture" at the top of the mountain. I'd say the key in this proposal was letting Rach plan most of it. She picked the lodge, the mountain for the picture, etc. She loves to figure out surprises so this was my only saving grace.
Rachel: We gathered together with our small group of friends at the edge of the peak and flashed our friend who was taking the pictures a grin. She then started to walk a little farther away with the ruse that she was looking for someone to take a picture of the whole group.
John: We smiled and posed for the picture. I turned to face Rach as our friends backed away:
"Hey, you know I don't care that I can't surprise you right?"
"...Oh no…" (She literally said that)
"You know I just care about loving you for the rest of your life and mine?"
(Cue sappy stuff)
She started to smile then. I asked her, she said “YES!” and heard the whoops and cheers from our friends. I wasn't nervous at all surprisingly. It was the easiest thing to ask. We took some pictures, and I went down the mountain for the best ski of my life.
Rachel: Our friends backed away from the peak, but I hardly noticed because John had turned to me and had the biggest most adorable smile on his face. He said something about surprises and I remember my thoughts turning into “OMG! Right now?! AHHHH!” He got down on one knee, asked me to marry him, and without hesitating I said yes!
Rachel: P.S. even more kudos to John because he had several letters from friends that were not present at the proposal to give to me when we returned to our cabin!