I’m Engaged!

Oh my goodness, what a weekend!!! Jimmy and I headed out to western Virginia for a little camping, we planned to stay at the Peaks of Otter a few nights and visit his family, maybe go take a dip in Panther Falls.

We got there late Friday night and set up camp. The campsite at the peaks is great. Each campsite has a smooth, graveled area bordered by rails for your tent, a picnic table, a cooking fire setup and posts for hanging lights. It’s $16 per night. There are also bathrooms not too far from the campsites.

Saturday morning we got up bright and early and headed over to the trails, where we planned to climb to the top of Sharp Top. The Sharp Top trail is marked as “strenuous” on the map, and they were NOT kidding. It’s 1.5 miles to the summit, which is 3,865 feet above sea level. It took us about an hour and 15 minutes to get all the way up.

The trip up was awesome! About halfway up, we rounded a huge boulder and Jimmy whispered, “STOP!” I froze, since more than one person had told us about how many bear are on the peaks. He pointed and I saw a deer about thirty feet in front of us. I started sneaking closer, hoping for a good picture. The deer just stared at me.

I got a little closer and then he just hopped right up the side of the hill, looked around and started walking right toward me. They are way bigger in person than I thought!

The deer came within about six feet of me before other people started coming from both directions on the trail. He wasn’t scared at all, I think they’re used to people feeding them (although he looked really hungry). He basically posed for pictures for every single person that came up the trail, and wasn’t going anywhere. We eventually moved on, still in awe that we got that close! I believe he’d have eaten right out of my hand if I’d attempted to feed him.

About 11:30 or so, we finally reached the top. I feel like I’m in pretty good shape and let me tell you that trail kicked my butt! I was exhausted and completely drenched in sweat, not to mention a little grimy from camping, no shower and still in the same clothes from the day before which I’d also slept in. Definitely not at my best, ha!

The view from the top was gorgeous. All around the summit were little medallions pointing out landmarks in the distance and how far they were from where you stood. It was amazing how small the lake and lodge looked from up there (that’s near where we started). Flat top, the highest of the three peaks, is on the other side of the lake.

It was a little hazy so we couldn’t see the town of Bedford (8 miles away), but we could see the various other landmarks pointed out, like Wheats Valley, and the third peak, Hearkening Hill.

We hung out for a while, it was pretty crowded up there with families who had rode the bus up (you can take a bus to just below the summit and hike the last 1500 feet to the top if you don’t want to climb the whole trail) and a huge troop of Boy Scouts who were being daring and getting stuck in rocks and all sorts of hilarious, boyish things.

It was getting pretty hot and we both were starving, but every time I suggested heading back down the trail, Jimmy wanted to stay a little while longer. I shrugged and said okay, I was having fun anyway.

We jumped up on top of the rock wall and climbed on to the highest rock, which isn’t connected to the platform. It was a little scary and Jimmy’s a little height-nervous so I was surprised he wanted to come up there with me at all. We looked out over a gorgeous mountain vista as peregrine falcons flew by, casting shadows on the trees below. It was truly breathtaking.

Next thing I knew I had a gorgeous ring on my finger and had told the man I love YES, that I’d love to spend the rest of my life with him. This is the sweetest surprise I’ve ever been given.

The fact that it was a surprise is perhaps the most shocking of all. Jimmy is terrible at keeping a secret. He always tells me my Christmas presents and finds out surprises before they happen. When he told me he’d had the ring almost a month, I about fell off the rock. He’d talked to my parents more than two weeks ago. All our mutual friends knew! I was the last to know, ha!

We stopped in the little cabin and I used a piece of charcoal from the fireplace to make our little mark.

The ring is gorgeous. He has such good taste. It’s a tension setting in white gold. I adore the details.

It catches the light beautifully. I’m so thankful for such a perfect weekend and beyond excited about this next stage of our life together. I love you Jimmy!


  1. says

    yay! this was the post i was hoping to see today.

    a beautiful story of a beautiful day…and YES…a beautiful ring.

    congrats to both of you :)

    - t*

  2. says

    Ugh, I was getting all teary reading this post, and I already knew! Congratulations!!! Perfect story, perfect ring, I’m just so happy for you both!!!
    Best wishes and much love,

  3. Andrea says

    Congrats! Congrats! Congrats!

    Beautiful ring and a beautiful setting to get engaged in!

    I suppose we can look forward to lots of posts about great design in weddings, invitations, and all the fun things that go along with planning a wedding.


  4. genevieve says

    When you sent me the picture I got the BIGGEST smile on my face. Im so happyhappyhappy for you, I cant say it enough

  5. says

    For many things… you guys truly deserve all the happiness life has to offer, you guys are a great example of not giving up on true love and following your heart in an age where love seems to be disposable!

  6. christopher says

    so now i know what the picture message was you sent! (except i couldn’t open it for some reason!)

    i’ve already said it, but congratulations you two! so exciting. :)

  7. Mia says

    Okay, so I didn’t read the subject line, so the ring picture was a huge surprise for me, too! I almost cried… I’m so happy for you guys!

  8. Rachel says

    that is so great! congratulations to you both! how awesome that he actually surprised you, too!

    I am so happy for you!!!

  9. Jen says

    Congratulations! I’ve been reading your blog forever (love it!) and I’m so happy for you both! I hope we get to see lots of wedding planning pix and stories!

  10. says

    Congratulations! Your ring is just gorgeous and you two look so sweet together. And can I just say, that judging by all the stuff you post here and your impeccable taste – you are going to have the coolest wedding.

  11. DawnMarie says

    Congrats! Finding that special someone is the best. To know you have someone to share all of lifes events with,good and bad, is the best feeling. I wish you happiness as you move forward in the next phase of your relationship. The ring is beautiful.

    He knows he is going to be married to a future supermodel right? You have such style and do everything with such passion. I look forward to your posts in regards to wedding planning and such. Which is weird, since I didn’t even get into my own wedding planning that much. Hence getting married in the islands. Let them do it all…..

    Dawn Marie

  12. says

    The wait is over.

    Congratulations from Mum and I in NZ.

    What a fabulous place for Jimmy to pop the question. The deer must have been in on it and wanted to share the moment- a great omen.

    Inspiring and well planned on Jimmy’s behalf.



  13. Mona says

    I had a feeling when I first found your blog that you would be getting married, very, very soon. I am so happy for you. Women like you can’t be unmarried, I will be looking forward to all the wedding post. congrats!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. says

    I told you this already, but CONGRATS! When I got that text message, I completely froze (I was shocked and excited!)

    This is so wonderufl, and when I read your story and looked at all the pictures, I really did get teary eyed!

  15. says

    oh my goodness i’m so happy for you!
    and that is an AMAZING ring and a very cretive/cute way to propose =]

    by the way it’s gina / wellwithin on live journal. =P

  16. toni says

    Congratulations! What a great story :-) Are you going to have a crafty wedding?? Can’t wait to read all of the upcoming wedding planning posts…

  17. says

    Congratulations! Enjoy the wedding planning, it can be intense but great fun if you don’t get too caught up in the stress! Lovely ring!

  18. says

    The amazing part is that not only did Jimmy keep the secret, is your parents, your brother nor your sisters ever hinted either! In fact, 250 of my twitter friends didn’t even tell. :)

    I love you. I am proud of you. And It will be very nice having another guy on the island.

    Love you..


  19. Hank Brooks says

    Congratulations Amber and Jimmy! What a beautiful spot (I’ve been there a couple times) – you’ll never forget it!

    I know God will bless you:

    “For I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you, not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.” Jer. 29:11

    Pastor Hank

  20. says

    Felicitaciones! or congratulations! This is a really fun part of life, I hope you and Jimmy enjoy this very much! (Crappy english, sorry)

  21. angelesb says

    The ring is awesome, so elegant and modern!!!
    Hope you have bunches of happy days like this one!!

    Regards from México

  22. says

    awwwww!!!!! i’m all teary too! you guys are so lovely. congratulations – and enjoy the wonderful journey ahead of you two!!!!

  23. says

    Amber and Jimmy,
    That’s great news! Pat and I just passed our 18th (!) anniversary. I don’t remember HOW we ended up engaged, but it happened! I think we just slid into it. Anyhow, you have yours documented in case you two forget 18 years from now!! :)
    Ronn (FUTURES Antiques)

  24. says

    That really is great news! Pat and I just passed our 18th anniversary. I don’t remember HOW we got ourselves engaged (!) but we did. :) YOU have yours documented, so if YOU TWO forget 18 years from now, you can look it up!
    (FUTURES Antiques)

  25. Ellen says

    Amber, I’ve been reading your blog for awhile, and I was thrilled to see that you’re engaged! Good luck to you and Jimmy.

  26. says

    Yayayyyayay! I remember not being able to wipe the smile from my face for days after I got engaged. Enjoy this wonderful time and have fun planning!

  27. says


    As a newly-married old lady, I am sooo happy for you! You two are adorable together and your love just radiates off the screen. I hope the preps aren’t too trying – but if you need any down-n-dirty advice, come to mama.

    ~ hb33 ~

    p.s. we have something in common – we’re both bigger than our men! ;~)

  28. says

    i’m so behind in my blog reading….so a very belated CONGRATULATIONS to you both! your boy chose an incredible place for a proposal!