Tuesday, May 4, 2010

the proposal

***disclaimer: this post is really ridiculously long. but i couldn't see any way around it. :) there are also lots of nice pictures if you're not into reading. ***

a couple weeks ago dannon asked if he could take me out to dinner and maybe a walk through the park for our 3 year anniversary. he also took my patio furniture, so i knew this would be no ordinary dinner.

thursday afternoon, when i got home from work, i discovered a little note on my desk in his handwriting.

so i looked out my window to find this inscribed in chalk on the wall across from my house - "hey cupcake! come outside at 2:39p.m. and bring a camera."

it was 12:30 when i saw this so i had to wait an agonizing 2 hours wondering! i ended up cleaning my house and packing for portland with all the nervous energy i had.

when the time finally came, i went outside my front door and found another chalk message with dannon’s cute elephant drawings.

i followed arrows, elephants and little messages up to the top of alamo square where i lost the messages.

i stood there in the grass for a few minutes looking confused and bewildered until a nice russian tourist couple approached me. “are you kim? this is for you.”

they handed me a little envelope with a card full of loving words and another clue on the back.

i knew this next location was of course mendel’s, my favorite art store on haight street, about 12 blocks away. so off i went! trying to go as fast as i possibly could while still maintaining a smell-less, sweaty-less composure. soon i discovered more chalk arrows, elephants and messages! somehow he knew the exact route i would take… or maybe there are tons of chalk drawings around our neighborhood...

when i got to mendel’s the cashier girls handed me a little gift with my next clue. they also giddily told me happy anniversary, as did other random people shouting from way in the back of the store {i’m assuming other workers}. the clue was to call my “tattooed and pierced friend.” i have several of those, but i knew the one to call. so i stepped just outside the door and dialed {again trying to be patient… but that’s hard when you know the treasure that awaits at the end of the treasure hunt!}.

our phone exchange went something like this:

me: hi larry!

larry: hey kim, what’s up?

me: uh… you tell me! i’m supposed to call you.

larry: [long pause] um, okay… well, where are you?

me: mendel’s.

larry: what’s mendel’s?

me: an art store on haight street!

larry: oh. where on haight street? i’m kind of close, so i can just come meet you and we can figure out what’s happening.

me: haight & clayton! hurry!

30 seconds later out walks larry from mendel’s!!! he had been hiding in the back the whole time! he told me he was heading into town and i could come if i wanted. right larry… he led me a couple blocks away until we came upon dannon’s car. larry: “oh, hey, let’s just take this…”

from there he drove me over to a different neighborhood and dropped me off at paper source. i went in and went through what would soon be a common ritual:

me: [sheepishly] um,… i’m kim… do you have something for me?

cashier: kim!! happy anniversary!

and then i would receive a little gift from said store with a clue.

the gift from paper source was this super cute cupcake kit! swoon!

the next clue sent me to hayes valley where my favorite candy store, miette, is!

i went in and they gave me a little box with some sort of goody, a note saying i couldn’t open it until 6:49 {gah!}, and my next clue leading me down to the mission {boy was i glad for a chauffeur!}.

down in the mission we went to my favorite clothes/shoes/funny trinkets store, therapy. the cashier guy there was SUPER into the whole thing and got really excited when i said my name.

he handed me a little book about an elephant {cutest thing ever!} with my clue which contained a really bizarre coin. we all stared at it for a few minutes until it dawned on me that it was very pirate-y… which of course meant the pirate store, 826 valencia! off we ran across the street.

the cashier there was a super fun hipster girl who said she did have a clue for me, but didn’t know where it had run off to and i would have to search the store. if you haven’t been there, the pirate store is full of all these drawers and trap doors full of pirate booty. it’s also a very interactive store, so i was sifting through a massive cauldron of sand, drawers of wooden snakes, stacks of planks, etc.

finally i found my clue along with a super sweet message in a bottle in a trap door in the floor!

my clue was a direction, so the hipster girl let me use a compass and i realized it pointing directly at one of my other favorite stores little otsu.

off we ran again! this time to receive another card of sentiments and a post card for the japanese tea garden in golden gate park.

we drove over and there was dannon, acting all nonchalant. there was no patio furniture, no set up, nothing. dannon tried to explain that the next event was to hang out in the park because that’s one of our favorite things to do; that all the stores he sent me to was sort of a walk through our favorite experiences together. i sort of got it, but you know, i was expecting to find the big finale when i finally caught up with dannon, so it was a bit of emotional inertia.

we had a sweet walk through the shakespeare garden and talked and laughed for a bit. then dannon handed me my next clue and told larry he could take me from there.

that clue was to head down to the palace of fine arts, our favorite romantic place in the city. so dannon drove me down, along with my patio furniture and food. we set up our little table in the lawn across from the palace and dined to this view:

i am a huge lover of magic tricks, so Dannon did a little card trick to show me the menu… which was my favorite meal from my favorite restaurant!

after dinner it was finally time to open my goody box, which was a super delicious cupcake! and at the bottom of the box there was one more clue:

it was a gorgeous evening, so dannon suggested we walk down to the beach. there he drew a big question mark in the sand and pulled out my clue cards which had letters on the back. he handed each letter to me as he said the words, “kim lawson, will you marry me?”

little did i know, but dannon had made a pit stop at a bathroom on the beach, and there, gave larry his camera. larry snuck onto the beach and was photographing it all! it went something like this:

needless to say, we were pretty giddy! we even made an exclamation point in the sand next to the question mark.
right after dannon proposed, the sun set behind the golden gate bridge! it was pretty magical!


  1. Omygosh! Amazing!! One of the sweetest proposals I've read :) And so fun!! CONGRATULATIONS!!!


    xoxoxoxoxox, Ecstatic Jayne

  3. oh my, this is so incredible, I loved reading this and that last photo is so perfect :) congratulations!

  4. what an amazing proposal!! so so sweet! loooved it!!

  5. oh wow... this is so amazing. good thing i haven't put on make up yet, because i'm tearing up right here!

    congratulations you two... kim, you are so lucky to have found a wonderful, thoughtful, creative man. you are in for such an adventure!!!

  6. kim thats the most amazingly beautiful proposal....... your fiance is so romantic and im so happy for you. :) xxxxxx

  7. OMG Kim! This honestly might be the greatest proposal of all time. Seriously. This is the cutest thing, and you've definitely got yourself a keeper. Congrats!!!

  8. This is quite possibly the greatest proposal story, ever! Congratulations!!!!

  9. How romantic, I love that proposal! Congratulations you seem to have found the perfect guy:)

  10. That is so sweet!!!! Aww I almost teared up! You two are sooo cute!!!!!

  11. This is the most amazing proposal I've ever heard of! Congratulations, what a great guy to spend the rest of your life with! Thank you for sharing your beautiful story.

  12. oh my gosh. that is like it is in a movie!!! and those pictures--- how awesome to have caught such sentimental moments!!!

    congratulations beautiful girl-- you & your mister are definitely bound for many more wonderful adventures!!!


  13. This made me cry with happiness! But also with jealousy!! How can a guy possibly be so perfect??? How on earth did he think of all that? Seriously can you clone him and give me one?!
    I'm beyond happy for you!

  14. That's surely the most romantic, imaginative, thoughtful proposal I've ever heard. He's definitely a keeper ;) So so so happy for you both!!


  15. Oh dear. I am in tears now after reading this! What an amazing and wonderful and exciting proposal, Kim. Truly fabulous. And I LOVE that you have pictures of the big moment. Many years back, Alan and I were visiting Plymouth on the south coast of England, on the anniversary of the day we'd met. He set up the timer on our camera to get a picture of us when he dropped to one knee and proposed... I treasure that photo!

    Congratulations. I am so so happy for you!

  16. beautiful! seriously what a great guy you have. :) This is my first time to your blog and after reading a story like that I'm following. :) congrats to you.
    nicole visiting from

  17. i just got teary eyed! what a wonderful thoughtful man you have! congratulations!!

  18. I literally started crying when I read this (seriously), Kim. I so happy for ya'll! Congratulations. I know you are so stoked and that makes me super happy. You guys are some of my favorites :). Wishing you the best!

  19. i mean i really don't know what to say... except that i read this entire post AND it filed my heart with joy!!!
    a big CONGRATULATIONS {again}
    and a kudus to dannon for totally going all out and being so creative! and throwing you off!! i loved that when you met up with him he didn't propose right away!! you just walked through the park.. that is so sweet!!
    so happy for you!

  20. you are living in a fairytale! Congrats! your story made me cry.

  21. I have no words for how amazing this story is :) congrats!

  22. This is the cutest proposal story ever!!! I read the entire thing, word for word and got the chills while reading because it's just so sweet and he put so much thought into it!! I love that he took your patio furniture and you ate dinner at the palace of fine arts. i really wish I had been walking by to see you both!! :) You're both adorable together, congrats!!!!!

  23. Yayyyyyy!!! that is so unbelievable! what an amazing proposal story! Good job Dannon! Congrats to you both!!!! I'm so excited for you!!

  24. CUTEST THING EVER!!!! congrats!!

    ps. this was the perfect reading material that I need to take a break from studying from icky finals, THANKS!!


  25. Kimmo, I love you so much, and I'm so excited for you both! I'm in Japan right now, it's early morning, and I'm getting all teary eyed and happy because of you!

  26. Congrats Kim! (This is Lyndsey 'Daniel', I actually just got married myself last month, so the last name is changed) I work with Ruby and she told me about you getting engaged and said I should check out your blog for the story and really, Dannon did a great job! I was so impressed. I was telling someone at work and she said "Stop! I'm gonna cry!" Anyways, I wanted to just say hi and congratulations (or best wishes I think is the proper term?) Either way, I wish you guys the best! And your blog is lovely :)

  27. what a great story! I'm so happy for you both. I guess I will just have to visit you in Los Angeles now! Love and happiness to you both!