I had been thinking about it for some time and finally decided that it was time to talk to a friend about it. As I have known Heidi for about ten years, I decided that I would talk to her and then enlist her help in planning the actual asking of Deirdre. Heidi all but cried when I told her what I was planning. She got so excited and offered to help anyway she could. I asked her to keep it quiet for now, as I was not sure when I wanted to let the rest of our little group in on it. Heidi asked if she could call on Charlotte for help and I said sure.

Heidi, Daniel, Alana, Daymon and I were sitting around waiting for Deirdre to get home one night, and I decided that it was time to bring them in on the whole thing. Boy was Dee surprised at the welcome she got when she arrived home.

Not more than a couple of days after I told the group, Deirdre found this great place for vacations and sent the link out to everyone so that they could see it. Her idea was for a bunch of us to save up and go there for a really fun time. From the look on her face, it was now obvious as to where she and I were going to have our ceremony done. As you can see, This Place looks wonderful.

Things really started to get tricky about the first week of January when I went looking for rings. Heidi, Charlotte, and Alana had given me some good ideas, but as it turned out, what I was looking for just wasn't available in the sizing that I wanted. That is to say, it could be done, but the band would wind up being very wide. I finally decided on the design and had the jeweler size the ring for me.

Next came the question of where/when to ask Deirdre. Alana, having scoped out Deirdre's thoughts on the matter, suggested a place with lots of folks around to ooooh and ahhhh over it. This sounded fine to me. The group talked about it for a while and came up with a couple of suggestions. Ray and Nicky had given Dee and I tickets to a Sharks game and I thought, maybe I could do it there. As it turns out it was better that I didn't. It seems some other gentleman had that very same idea. Next was the idea to ask her on her birthday. I have a habit of asking Deirdre what she wants for her birthday. All she said she wanted was a Boston Cream cake. Ok I thought I can do this. So it was decided that I would ask her on her birthday.

The next issue was how to ask. We all talked about it for a while and the idea of spelling out the question on her cake really appealed to me. I really wanted to put the ring on the cake and so we worked on wording. Heidi had agreed to bake the Boston Cream cake, but I wanted more cake for the rest of the folks that were going to be there. I went to a bakery and chose a cake that I thought would work great. The wording on the cake from the bakery would read "Will you be mine?". Heidi asked if she could decorate her cake as well. I agreed and we decided to have it read "Chad loves Deirdre", with the ring as the O in loves.

As the day of the party arrived, it all came down to timing. How were we going to do all that needed to be done, and still keep the surprise? Deirdre had asked Heidi if she would do some Middle Eastern dancing for her as the theme for the party was Middle Eastern. Heidi did her first dance as Daniel, Daymon, and Alana served the appetizer. As soon as Heidi finished her first dance, the main course was served. With Daymon, Daniel, and Alana in the kitchen, the food was fabulous. Next came present opening time.

Once the last of her gifts were opened Daymon suggested a second dance from Heidi so that we could get the desserts ready. Once Heidi finished her second wonderful dance those of us that needed to prepare the cakes went inside. We came out with cakes in hand singing Happy Birthday to Deirdre. Once the song was over, I knelt down on the pillow next to Deirdre with my sword in hand, quieted everybody down and said..."Deirdre and I were, how to put this politely, lying in bed a few days ago when she hit me with a statement, that after I thought about it, wasn't true. The statement she hit me with was 'You've given me everything I ever asked for', that's not true, there's one thing I haven't given you...it startes something like this..." At which point we revealed the "Will you be mine" cake ..."and ends something like this..." And we then showed her the "Chad Loves Deirdre" cake.

Deirdre, at this point, pretty much lost the power of speech. She took the ring from the cake, licked the chocolate off of it, put it on her finger and began to kiss and hug me. We heard a voice from the crowd saying "An answer would be nice", so we finished the kiss, sat back and she said "Yes". To which someone said "but where's the answer cake?!?"

Heidi then unsheathed my sword, laid it on the ground at our feet and asked "Will you swear?". I echoed Deirdre's response of "Hell yeah!". We got up, took hands, and jumped the sword.

Dee then disappeard inside, and returned with a cookie upon which she had written "Yes". She fed me the cookie and everyone was satisfied.