Once upon a time in Chicago there was an enchanting ABC/LiveWell Network producer who was quite smitten with her Prince Charming. An employee of the Walt Disney Company, she naturally dreamed of the perfect proposal in front of the Cinderella castle at Magic Kingdom, but things didn’t go exactly as she’d imagined. Read her modern-day fairy tale proposal story below.
The couple’s engagement photo shoot took place in their West Town neighborhood of Chicago, captured by the talented Steve Koo. Their adorable puggle, Chloe, also made an appearance in several photos. Please stay tuned to Be U Weddings for their upcoming wedding.
From the Bride: Nate and I got engaged on April 9th, 2011. At that time, we had been dating for a day over two years. Our engagement story is a bit magical, with a dash of hilarity. I work for the Walt Disney Company…ABC 7 to be exact. I’m a producer at WLS-TV in the programming department. ABC is owned by Disney…therefore, one of the perks of working for the Mouse is that we get great discounts on the Disney Resorts, plus free tickets to the parks, so heading down to California or Orlando is a relatively inexpensive vacation for us! Plus, who doesn’t want to feel like a kid again strolling down Main Street USA with a Mickey Mouse Ice Cream in hand?! We first went to Disney World in February 2011 because I was running in the Disney Princess Half-Marathon. My whole family was there, including Nate. He knows one of my favorite places in the world is Disney, so naturally I thought after sweating it out and running 13 miles in a Snow White costume, he would be waiting on bended knee at the finish line. The ring is what kept me pushing towards the end! Well I didn’t see Nate when I crossed the finish, and when I did, he wasn’t on bended knee, he was standing there. OK? I thought this was for sure the moment! He came over and gave me a hug and said congrats. I whispered to my sister, who also ran with me, well I guess I’m not getting engaged today. BOO! The next day we went back home to Chicago, no ring on my finger, but that’s ok. I figured he must have something super spectacular planned in the future!
The next day was Monday, and Nate was dropping me off at the el to get to work. Before I got out the car, he said, “I have a feeling something good is going to happen today!” I sort of brushed it off. I wasn’t sure what he meant, and I was still kind of tired from the half-marathon a couple days earlier. Then later that day, he called me at the station and says he had a work trip in April to Orlando for a convention meeting. Could I take off and get away for a few days with him? Oh, and can I call Disney and reserve a hotel room for us? (Since I get my discount and all, he reasoned.) We were just in Orlando, but sure thing! Now most people would know at that point that that is when I would be getting engaged. I however, did not, because later that night he showed me an email from the president of the company asking him to go on this ‘work trip’. I thought it was legit. But maybe, just maybe, I would get my wish and be proposed to in the Magic Kingdom in front of Cinderella’s castle…cheesy, but a dream nonetheless!
April 9th we were on a plane to Orlando! We arrived at our hotel on the Disney property and we immediately headed to the pool for some cocktails and sun. (After all, he didn’t need to be at the convention until the next day.) We had dinner reservations later that night at the Bistro in Paris at Epcot, so after a couple hours of hanging by the pool, we headed back to our hotel to get ready for our night. I put on my makeup and my dress I got specifically for this dinner. IT DIDN’T FIT! I start freaking out…I planned each of my outfits for every day that we were there! What were we going to do? What was I going to wear?! I had nothing to wear! (Girls, you know what I’m talking about!) Nate saw me freaking out. I begrudgingly put on a semi-cute dress, nowhere near as nice as the other one, and I was in a bad mood. Too much sun and Sam do not go well together. “It’s ok, you look beautiful,” Nate said. “No I don’t! I hate this dress!” Yes, admittedly, I was being a brat and I knew it. Nate was trying to calm me down, and I started storming off to the door of our hotel room, and as I was about to walk out of the door, I made it to the air conditioner when I heard Nate say in the voice he uses when I’m being a brat, (like a parent would say to a child)…”Saaaam.” I turned around and snap backed “What?!” And he was down on one knee, and I was standing next to the air conditioner with cold air flying up my dress…I am in shock ,so the first thing that comes out of my mouth is “What are you doing!?” Then he started saying to me very beautiful things about how much he loved me and that he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. I seriously could believe this was happening. You always imagine this moment, but when it finally happens, you are completely blown away. Nate opened the ring box and asked “Will You Marry Me”? I don’t remember looking at the ring, and I don’t remember exactly what he said, but I do remember the cold air blowing up my dress! Yes…I, I don’t know what to say?” I stammered, still completely in shock. Nate said worriedly “Is that a yes??” I said “Yes, it’s a yes!” He put the ring on my finger, and I finally got to really look at it. It was magnificent! We shared a big hug and a kiss! And then we both started to freak out and finally take it all in, “Oh my god, what just happened?” “Did we just get engaged?” (We are both prone to unnecessary anxiety/panic…hehe). Nate offered, “Let’s sit down for a minute and process this.” We sat down a bit overwhelmed, but of course ecstatic! After it finally sunk in and the nervousness finally wore off, we went out to a beautiful dinner that evening and watched the fireworks right from our table!
It was very surreal and pretty comical how everything went down. And of course it’s our story. Nate later told me he was so nervous that he couldn’t wait any longer to propose, so he did it right then and there as we were getting ready to go out. And of course, the work trip was a cover…how naïve of me. Nate said he knew he had to get me back to the happiest place on earth to propose. (On a side note, he DID have the ring with him on our February trip, but he couldn’t find the right time!) So, no, I didn’t get proposed to in front of Cinderella’s castle, and I may have been acting like a bitchy villain, but I did get my Prince Charming…with a cool breeze.