Rules of Engagement


Well folks, I have a new favorite accessory and I’m never taking it off. Zack & I celebrated our 8 year anniversary last Tuesday, and he proposed! After 8 years, you’d think I would’ve seen it coming, but, guys, I was totally & completely surprised!! Of course we had discussed it and it was definitely in our plans, but with the big move a few months ago & getting settled in…I just wasn’t expecting it! Needless to say there were lots of tears & laughter & shock…but I’ll get to that

Now I know what you’re thinking; get to the story…

Like I said, it was our 8 year anniversary & we had dinner reservations at Yamashiro, an Asian-fusion restaurant in Hollywood. The evening started out rough when I hit worse than normal traffic on my way home from work. Meanwhile (as I later learned), Zack was busy pacing around the apartment trying to keep busy and calm (I guess his nerves were starting to get to him). Over an hour later (and 3 phone calls from Zack asking where I was & how much longer), I made it home, and I wasn’t going to let the traffic get me down.

Zack was right there to greet me when I walked in the door, and he led me to our room where he surprised me with roses and champagne (ah, the 3 phone calls make sense now). It was so sweet and I got a little teary-eyed from the sweet surprise.

I quickly got ready (thank goodness I bought a new dress for the occasion) and we decided to call a Lyft to take us to dinner (absolutely no more driving after my evening commute!).

We arrived to Yamashiro and were not disappointed. The restaurant sits on the side of a mountain overlooking all of Los Angeles. Seriously amazing view, and our table did not disappoint. We were seated at a corner table that faced a window overlooking the city; we drank & dined & talked. Everything was delicious. As our dinner was coming to a close, the waiter brought us the dessert menu. It looked amazing, but we were full and even though there is always room for dessert, we decided to pass. It was still fairly early in the evening, so I suggested a walk around the gardens outside of the restaurant.
It was quiet and we were completely alone as we strolled along the garden paths. We walked around for a while just talking when Zack asked something along the lines of, “Did I surprise you earlier with the flowers & champagne?” to which I replied, “Yes!”

Now here’s where things start to run together because it all happened so fast, and I think I actually went into temporary shock, but Zack continued by saying, “Well I have one more surprise for you.”

My first thought was “dessert.” (Obviously my mind thought this made the most sense since we skipped dessert at dinner.) Well…in case you haven’t put two and two together, the surprise was most definitely NOT dessert.

He began sharing his feeling & thoughts with me, and in my head I started to put together what was happening, but I couldn’t convince myself that it was, in fact, really happening. I believe the words, “Wait, what?” escaped my lips at one point. But yes, it was happening, and Zack got down on one knee, I said yes, and we laughed and cried and stood there holding each other in shock and happiness.

And no one in the entire world knew what had just happened except us.

And this brings me to my next bit:

Rules of Engagement
1. Don’t Ruin the Element of Surprise
Talking about the next step in your relationship is very important, and you should definitely make sure you are both ready to take that next step, but, LADIES, let the guy take charge in the engagement process. Zack and my friend, Brittany, (who works in jewelry-you can check out her blog HERE-and helped Zack out with the design of my ring) literally had to BEG me to come look at rings with them. I knew Zack wouldn’t disappoint me with whatever he chose, but I did give in and went ONE TIME to give my input. After that, I was out. And it was soo worth it. Even after 8 years, Zack was still able to pull it off without me ever having a single clue.2. Do Be Polite
Your man just asked you to marry him! (Not to mention that little piece of jewelry you are now wearing.) Say thank you, and I love you, and make sure you tell him how much you love the ring because he just wants to know that you love it as much as he hopes you would.

3. Don’t rush to Social Media
Be in the moment. Zack hadn’t told anyone of his plans for that evening so we were literally the only people in the world who knew, and we embraced it. We didn’t call our friends and families until the next morning, and waited almost 24 hours before posting it to social media. Once the news is out, there’s no going back, so take time to enjoy it with each other for a moment. And make sure to reach out to those closest to you to tell them in person before changing your relationship status on Facebook.

4. Do Take a Selfie
As important as it is to just be in the moment, I think it’s equally important to document the event, even if that means taking a selfie or asking a police officer to take your picture (see below).

Anyway, Zack & I are thrilled (and, to be honest, I’m still in a little shock) about this new chapter. Thank you to everyone for all the congratulations, and I look forward to sharing more of this journey with you as it unfolds!

XO – Courtney

dress [madewell] // shoes [target] // necklace [stella & dot]
[okay, a few more]


  1. November 24, 2014 / 7:00 pm

    So glad that I will be able to call you my Daughter-In-Law. What a special time for the two of you!

  2. November 25, 2014 / 1:08 am

    Thanks!! 🙂 We're both excited! I still can't believe how good he surprised me!

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