It started with breakfast in bed. Keegan, my boyfriend of about a year and a half, was kind enough to kick off my 27th year with a McDonald’s Coffee Cinnamon Bun (if you’re thinking “Why McDonald’s?” Then you have to try their bun with cinnamon).
He then surprised me with the most perfect gift collection, including a birthday cry from Richard Schiff, from “The West Wing”. After that, we enjoyed a quiet morning before going to dinner with my father.
We and the dogs got ready to go and, before going out, Keegan said, “Wait! I have another gift. Is there time? Of course, there is always time for gifts.
He made me sit on the couch and put a medium sized box in front of me. Inside was a note that said, “Close your eyes for a surprise.”
I followed the instructions and when I opened them the love of my life was on her knees with a ring in her hand. I immediately started crying at the sight (just a few hours after we joked I’m not the best at showing emotion), and he asked, “Will you marry me?” “
The crying was consuming me, so all I could do was nod and jump up to give him a hug. I realized then that maybe he would appreciate a verbal response, so I said, “Yes, of course! He put the ring on my finger and said, “Let’s go surprise everyone!”
Now it felt like we were going to have dinner with my dad, stepmom, and grandfather, as well as siblings (the typical Sunday dinner team). When we pulled up to the house, I noticed a strange number of cars, many of which I recognized.
I turned to Keegan and said, “I thought only daddy knew about the proposal?” He then said he had another surprise; when we entered the courtyard, our two families and a number of friends were there – surrounded by engagement decorations.
Speaking of decorations, there were also ‘Friends’ themed engagement cookies, which I thought were pretty much the best thing since sliced bread. I was so overwhelmed with love and excitement that I forgot that it was also my birthday.
My stepmom, Tammy, pulled out a jar encouraging people to leave engagement notes / advice. One of the best parts of the day was reading these notes when we got home and getting the information from so many people and couples that we respect.
It was the perfect day, one that I will never forget. It was so special to have this group of people together, all vaccinated and feeling a little more relaxed.
What made it extra special was – while Keegan and I spent a lot of time getting to know our families – because of the pandemic, it was the first time our families had met. It seemed to go off without a hitch (no pun intended), and we feel so lucky to have all of these wonderful people by our side.
Keegan’s birthday is today, so I have some hard work to do to try to make his day as special as it made mine. Happy birthday, sweet Keeg. Hope all your wishes will come true.
As for the wishes, I hope everyone has a safe Memorial Day weekend. Thank you to those who sacrificed everything for our freedom.
Taylor Leddin is the Life Editor at the Daily Journal and the Editor-in-Chief of Lifestyles of Kankakee County. His column, “A Taylor Made Life,” is published every Saturday in the Life section. She can be reached by phone at 815-937-3369, email tleddin @ daily-journal or via Twitter @leddinlife.