56.68255° N, -5.10226° E
Those who know us well will know that George (my husband) and I are adventurers and dreamers. We much prefer exploring somewhere new and investing in our memories, then investing in material things.
In fact, this is what led to our “anniversary tradition” to celebrate our anniversary by organising a couple’s session so that we may look back on the photos captured one day and share them with our children and grandchildren. This is our gift to each other and to ourselves.
This time around, we were celebrating our 7th anniversary together. To commemorate the moment, we decided to go for a 6-week holiday, starting in Scotland. We thought, what better way to start off the holiday than with our anniversary shoot with none other than The Kitcheners. They had been on our wish list for a while, so it seemed like fate to be able to capture this moment with them.
Since this shoot was planned so long in advance, and was part of our tradition, nothing led me to believe that this would be the moment George would ask me to be his forever. I had perhaps hoped this may be the moment, but those thoughts quickly evaporated when Dylan from the Kitcheners asked us how long we’d been married. He was so genuine about it that I could sense there was nothing happening in the background.
Yet, unbeknown to me, when I headed to the loo before starting our shoot, George quickly and quietly informed Dylan of his plans to propose later that day. They didn’t have much time to talk before I came back so decided to reconvene at lunch to make a proper plan.
The best part is that I had completely no idea and nothing they did all day gave them away. Dylan held on to the ring for George, George wasn’t nervous or acting weird, and when they reconvened at lunch, they did so in the men’s bathroom, so nothing was out of the ordinary for me.
Close to sunset, Dylan took us to the most beautiful valley with tall grass and purple flowers. After climbing a small hill to better see the view, Dylan asked us to close our eyes and embrace to get a great shot. Completely unaware of what was happening behind me back, Dylan passed the box to George before quietly leaving room for us. George then started whispering beautiful words in my ear before letting go and showing me a rock he was holding.
A little surprised and confused as to how he got a rock in his hand while we were hugging, he then proceeded to drop to one knee and asked me to open it. That’s when I realised what the rock (ring box) symbolized, and couldn’t help but break down in tears.
See, since the very beginning of our relationship, whenever it was time for a present (Christmas, birthdays, and the like) George would always joke I would get coal. However, as luck would have it, George would always have the most thoughtful gifts waiting for me. As such, coal became a lovely metaphor for his gifts over time.
With that in mind, he thought that for this ultimate gift, a piece of coal would be the perfect way to present it to me. As a 3D sculptor, he proceeded to sculpt a ring box to look like a piece of coal and 3D printed it with a prop maker in Sydney. I will treasure this box forever (and it is also featured in our elopement photos!)
We were so happy and full of emotion in this moment that we completely forgot about Dylan’s existence (sorry Dylan!). So, when he popped back in to congratulate us, it took us completely by surprise. Knowing that he was able to capture and immortalise this moment for us to treasure forever is the best gift I could have ever imagined.
The funniest part is that George became so nervous and full of emotion in the moment, that he actually forgot to ask me to marry him. He got down on one knee and flung his arm in the air to get me to open the box, but never actually uttered the words. So later on that night, when I reminded him of this fact, he then officially asked me right before we fell asleep.
I couldn’t have asked for a more thoughtful and unique proposal.
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