Love is in the air

This is going to be a big year for our family -- one daughter left on a mission, one daughter is graduating high school, and one daughter is getting married. As in MARRIED!

Jordan, our oldest, got engaged on New Year's Eve, and in honor of this impending Valentine's Day, I'm going to tell you all the romantic details. So, pull up a chair and pour yourself a Diet Coke. Chocolate might be a good idea as well.

image via  SW Portraits

image via SW Portraits

When Jordan returned from her mission In November of 2014, she was absolutely certain that she was not interested in dating. Ever. She thought boys were icky and weird and she wanted no part in their shenanigans. That resolve lasted approximately two weeks. Maybe ten days . . . but who's counting?

She dated quite a bit that winter semester and often reported that she was overwhelmed by the boys' expectations. They were too ardent. They seemed too serious. They were too touchy. I commiserated with her. I mean, who wouldn't hate it if people brought them cokes and candy and told them they liked them? That sounds utterly horrible.

At some point, around April or May, she started talking about this coach at her Crossfit gym (ha ha, I get to talk about Crossfit). They met up at a concert. He took her out a few times. She thought he was really cute, but unlike those other, pushy boys, he really didn't seem all that crazy-interested. And you know where this is going, right? This guy, Alex, slow-played the entire courtship. He was clear he was also dating other people. He didn't want to be serious right away. (And let's be clear, in Mormon terms "right away" is in the first three months.)

By the end of the summer though, they were pretty inseparable. And some of you may remember that he came home with her over Thanksgiving break to "meet the parents." One day, during the holiday, Alex, Sterling, and I went out for a late breakfast where he asked for our blessing. Now, keeping in mind that Alex is genuinely nice, respectable, ambitious, and so, so kind to our daughter, I still thought that I needed more than three days to make such an assessment. "Can you marry our baby daughter? I don't know. Hang around and work for us for seven years and then I'll decide." But I didn't say that because I'm not crazy, and I realize that this whole "asking" business is mostly just a show of respect and cooperation. And lucky for us, Alex has been nothing but respectful and cooperative. Honestly, we couldn't be more thrilled with the match.

Hang in there, I'm getting to the proposal part . . .

Alex's parents are currently living in Asia, so the only way Jordan could meet them (and they could meet her) was if Jordan was to travel overseas during the Christmas break. Jordan would spend about nine days in Korea, and then she would return directly to Houston to spend a week with us. Alex would meet her back in Provo just before school resumed. Except the secret plan was that Alex would fly to Houston on New Year's Eve for a surprise proposal. I was in on the secret for months and I didn't tell!! I deserve a prize.

One thing we hadn't really considered is that Alex would be out of pocket for almost 24 hours while traveling back to the US. And since Jordan and Alex are in constant contact, she became rather unsettled during that time. At one point she came to me:

Jordan: "Mom, I just talked to Alex, and he's not being honest with me."
Me: "Whatever do you mean, dear?"
Jordan: "Well, he says he's one place but I know he's not there. And he made up some story about his phone. And I just can't figure out what he is doing."
Me: "I'm sure there is a logical explanation. Let's go to a movie and turn our cell phones off. Kay?"

On New Year's Day, I took all of the girls for manicures and pedicures (you can't put a ring on ratty fingernails). Meanwhile, Alex arrived in Houston, had a car and gorgeous bouquet waiting for him at the airport, and headed over to our part of town. Madison and Rebecca met up with Alex and directed him to a beautiful local park. Then it was up to Sterling and I to get Jordan to said park, at 6:00 pm at night, without arousing her suspicions. No problemo. I made up some story about needing to drop by my brother's, encouraged her to dress warmly, and then scooted her out the door. I drove over to the park and sneakily pulled to the curb where Alex was waiting (remember, she still thinks he's in Korea) with a huge bouquet. Jordan, who generally doesn't deal well with surprises, has a brief moment of hyperventilation. Alex calmly opens the door and pulls/pries her out. And then they were off! Jordan and Alex walked into the park for the actual asking and answering parts. But they came to our house after a bit so we could all jump up and down and scream and examine the ring. It was all very exciting and dramatic.

Now Annie and I are planning weddings that will occur just a week apart. We like to keep things coordinated and orderly here at Nest & Launch. We will try to fill you guys in on this wedding business in real-time (or perhaps you could educate us). For instance, did you know the big trend in wedding cakes is naked cakes? And yes, it's fine to google naked cakes. Really.