I've been meaning to write this since it happened but with our Saskatoon Engagement Party just around the corner and getting off the phone with Landons mom about the details, I guess it put me in the mood to share our story!!
I'm still in a total daze and when people ask to see my ring or say congrats I actually forget that it happened! I think its because we have talked about it for so long and it never felt like we weren't engaged? Does that make sense? Anyway... nothing has changed except what's on my ring finger and that I am now pinning things to a Pinterest board. I'm slightly embarrassed about that last bit but its part of the fun!
Our story is very cute... all of it! It may even be a little nauseating but I am a true romantic and wear my heart on my sleeve. So prepare yourself... lol.
how we met / back-story
Landon and I both trained out of a local gym called 2110 fitness and this is where it all began. (There is an interesting synchronicity here as those are my two favourite numbers.) At the time I was still working with lululemon athletica and was also teaching as a yoga teacher. I was often attending fitness events as the community lead for lulu (for my store). Landon and I never crossed paths. He would often work out in the evening with Derek (his best friend and trainer) and I would attend the classes during the day.
In November of 2012 we were both attending the Dyne Across Canada Event at 2110 Fitness to raise money for Jump Start! Landon was sitting on an Airdyne (it's a bike) in front of me. I actually noticed him because he was wearing a bandana and was talking to Derek and the other trainers. I immediately thought he was a trainer as well due to his physique and his connection to everyone in the room.
I didn't know this but Landon had spotted me at this event. Upon seeing me he actually called our (now) mutual friend Cait and said, "I just saw the girl I am going to marry." (I know... I can't make this stuff up) and Cait replied, "Did you talk to her?" and he immediately answered "No." lol Cait is hilarious she obviously pointed out the issue that he should probably meet me if he wanted to marry me. This part of the story is my favourite.
12. 21. 12
Due to a few awesome friends (Derek and Jillie) I was quickly being set up on a blind group-date to meet the guy who started internet stalking me. I am still forever grateful to Jillie who really pushed me to meet Landon. I wasn't interested to begin with as I thought he was too much of a pretty boy haha.
Flanked by a posse of lulu girls, I met Landon at 80th & Ivy on 12.21.12. We celebrated "the end of the world" due to the mayan prophecy and we instantly connected. I definitely had my guard up as I sat across this incredibly good-looking, well-dressed, bleached-teeth, perfect-hair man who was interested in dating me. (I thought he was a player ok?) But what I had found was an incredibly attentive, sweet, kind, and doting man.
After a few drinks at 80th & Ivy, we all decided to go to CommonWealth Bar. Landon designed the space and pulled strings with the owner to get VIP access. As we entered we were greeted with drinks and Landon asked me to dance. That was huge! We had such an amazing night and I loved hearing about his first project with MB and his incredible passion for what he does. It was refreshing to meet someone who was driven and loves his work. I bought my own drinks and refused to let him buy me anything lol. I was super stubborn and very independent. But when he kissed me... it was fire-works! Nothing like I have ever experience before in my life.
our chicago engagement!
We arrived in Chicago on the 20th, a Monday. The following day (the day he proposed) was our 3.5 year anniversary and fell on the summer solstice. We met on the winter solstice - this has such a beautiful symmetry (also being number 21) that I just honestly can't pass up telling you about. Landon doesn't care about these numbers, and definitely does not think about any solstice, and so it definitely wasn't planned that way. Ok the good stuff...
how he asked
We spent the day first grabbing brunch (my favourite meal) and then riding the Devvy bikes to explore Chicago and get our barrings. We biked really south until we realized there wasn't much there and eventually made our way back towards Millennium park (where the bean/cloud is.) Landon kept suggesting we ditch our bikes. I was all snap-happy videoing our excursion, the bikes, the water, the fountains! We had bought a pass so I was very reluctant to release the bikes so soon and wanted to keep exploring. After multiple attempts I finally gave in to Landons wishes and we parked our bikes.
We made our way back to Frank Gehry's beautiful work with the outdoor music hall in Millenium park. Passed over my favourite bridge (also designed by Gehry) and wound up in the middle of the music hall. It was amazing. There was classical music being played, the sun was shining, it was so beautiful.
I was taking a phone call from AMA haha and it was all just very relaxed. I thought we were just checking things out before grabbing lunch. I had gotten off the call while Landon patiently waited for me and I started talking about our settlement from our hail damage. Ha! Y'know super romantic stuff...
I sat down beside him right in front of the stage, dead centre, and he takes out a zippo lighter. It was the zippo lighter his brother had given him with the letter "A" on it for Anholt, his last name. He was toying with it in his hand which was very uncharacteristic. He doesn't usually carry a lighter... he doesn't smoke so it stays home to light candles lol.
Landon then said, "We should get a cigar." Where I laughed and kind of looked at him side-ways and was like... "Ok?" hahah so weird. Totally not normal. We don't smoke. I've seen him smoke a cigar ONCE and it was at a friends wedding. He then said, "We have a lot to celebrate." I simply laughed because he was being a little odd and then I agreed, "we do!" We have done a lot and achieved a lot lately as a family and in our professions. Heck, we were in Chicago! lol "What do we have to celebrate?" I was looking for specifics, trying to figure out where his head was and thats when he started to pull the zippo apart. "What are you doing?" I thought he was breaking it...
On the inside of the zippo, underneath was my ring cradled at the base. A safe spot to keep a ring. It took me a second to register what was happening and I honestly don't remember what he said but I did start to cry so it had to be good. That's when he asked me to marry him and I said, "yes, of course!" It was awesome, perfectly sweet and he didn't get down on one knee which I requested. The one knee thing is a little too much for me lol especially in a public place. I'm (surprisingly) private with intimate moments like these.
The Swedish Tradition
Now called the Palm-Anholt tradition in our family: we both proposed! Simple, sweet, and equal. I fell in love with this tradition after Landons sister Ashley was proposed this way to her now husband Jakob who is Swedish. I loved that it felt equal, that I would be an active part of the proposal and that we both got to wear rings to signify our next chapter together. It was all very modern which I just adore and Landon was totally on board with the idea as well. I even asked Landons mom for permission to marry Landon while he was traveling in Shanghai (so nerve wrecking even though I feel really close to his mom) and went ring shopping in his home-town all alone! It's so crazy the emotions you go through and it was very eye-opening to experience what most men go through.
After Landon proposed, he asked me if I had his ring! Which to my surprise I totally forgot about and I did! "Omg, I do!" This is where things get confusing for most. So how were you surprised?
Well- Landon toyed with my head for awhile (ok a long time) and said he wouldn't propose when I expected it and said it would be very casual (which it actually was) so I didn't expect it. Chicago seemed too big and too likely. He had mentioned a year earlier that he would want to propose either in New York or Chicago (his favourite city) so I told myself to hold on to his ring in my little travel purse just in case he changed his mind. Knowing we wanted to do the "swedish tradition" well in advance, I wanted to make sure I had his ring with me so if the opportunity presented itself I wouldn't be kicking myself later. I originally planned to do it at a separate time, my own unique proposal, but he wanted to wear his ring too and so I got to propose at the same time. I said a bunch of sweet words, cried, and asked him to marry me. He obviously said yes and we went to The Chicago Athletic club to celebrate. We sat on the rooftop at Cindys, over looking the sky-line, the lake and the park where we proposed and he ordered beer (go-figure) and I ordered champagne! We called our families to share the amazing news, I cried some more, and we spent the rest of the day celebrating.
We went to a cubs game, I got a gluten-free hot-dog, and we went out for cocktails after-wards to keep celebrating the most amazing day, we didn't want it to end. We annoyingly called each other 'fiance' as much as we could that day and I was on cloud nine. Looking back I am so happy he did it in the middle of the day since it meant we got to celebrate FOR HOURS!!