We're Engaged: Our Maine Proposal Story

Our Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photos

I am the luckiest. Kyle asked me to marry him earlier this month, and I’m still trying to wrap my head around the fact that I get to be with him forever. He’s pretty much the greatest guy I’ve ever known, and I tear up thinking about how much my life has changed since we met. If you know him, you already love him. If you don’t know him, you’re gonna love him. I could literally write a book about how incredible he is. For now, though, I just wanted to share a few of the special moments from our Maine proposal story with y’all. I have absolutely no idea where to start, so I’m just going to dive right in–

Every summer, we spend at least a week in Maine. One year, we loved it so much that we ended up staying a little over 7 months (recap here!). This is the year we say we really fell in love. We had said “I love you” before then, but spending months secluded in a picture-perfect snowy log cabin really helps determine whether or not you could see yourself spending the rest of your life with someone. So, yeah… Maine’s always been a special place for us– and for Kyle specifically. He’s been visiting since he was a baby, and he always says it’s the one place that really feels like home. 

This year (like always) we stayed at the Eschenroeder cabin on Lake Damariscotta, which has a handful of cool little islands closely scattered in it. One of the particularly prolific islands is known as Blueberry Island, which produces thousands of delicious little Maine blueberries during peak season. Peak season is typically later in August, so I was bummed to learn the island would probably be barren until well after we left. On this particular day, though, Kyle’s cousin Jesse and his wife Erin scoped out the island beforehand and claimed it had “lots of great pre-season bluebs.” So, Kyle and I fired up the putt putt and headed to pick blueberries with the pups. 

Nala is terrified of loud motor noises, so I was too busy consoling her to realize Kyle was going the absolute longest way possible. And that Jesse was following us in a kayak.

When we pulled up around the back of the island, the first thing that came out of my mouth was, “Um… what the heck, Jesse? Where are all the blueberries?” Then, as I kept walking, I spotted a bottle of champagne chilling in a makeshift ice bucket and a picnic blanket laid out in an opening by the shore. Everyone says, “Oh, so then you knew he was going to propose!” Nope. In all honestly, I thought Jesse and Erin just forgot their picnic blanket. It wasn’t until he started talking about wanting to spend the rest of our lives together that it hit me, and I literally blacked out. I don’t remember him getting down on his knee, I don’t remember him getting out a ring, and I don’t remember what he said. I just remember holding onto him for dear life and crying lots of happy tears. 

Our Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photosOur Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photos

Thankfully, Jesse is an absolute beast in a kayak, so he was able to catch up to us and take these awesome pics– all without being detected. Kyle took some signature selfies, as well, and for once, I didn’t make him delete any from his phone. They’re allll amazing, and they’re allll going in frames. 

Our Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photosOur Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photosOur Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photos

The pups were super excited about the whole thing, which I like to attribute to the Maine proposal but realistically had more to do with all the open water. They kept jumping in the lake, then hopping back on land, and then shaking on the blanket. It was completely soaked in under 2 minutes. We wouldn’t have wanted it any other way, though. 

Our Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photosOur Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photos

As for the ring I had no idea Kyle was carrying around in his backpack for the past 3 months, it’s his mom’s old ring. The main stone belonged to his grandma, who I’ll unfortunately never get to meet. I’m super traditional and big on sentimentality, so the idea of wearing his grandma’s diamond, which his mom passed down to us, is super special to me. We took it to a jeweler in Columbia, and we’re using the center stone to create my literal dream ring. It’s everything I’ve ever wanted, and I can’t wait to show it to you guys!

Our Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photos

Jesse took these pics of us coming back from Blueberry Island, and they make my heart so happy. We ended up sitting and happy crying on the island for over 2 hours, and it felt like 10 minutes. Time literally stopped.

When we finally got back to the dock, Kyle’s grandpa, Jesse, Erin, and his Aunt Cindy and Uncle Gary were all there to hug and congratulate us, and it was perfect. Kyle’s dad surprised us earlier that morning by flying in with Pops (again— I  was completely oblivious), so we were kind of bummed he wasn’t around before we had to leave for dinner. Kyle made surprise reservations at my favorite restaurant in the entire world, Primo, so we had to leave within 10 minutes after getting back. Turns out, Kyle’s dad snuck off to Portland for another surprise– to pick up Kyle’s sister. 

Our Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photos Our Maine Proposal Story by popular midwest lifestyle blogger Stephanie Ziajka from Diary of a Debutante, Damariscotta Lake proposal photos, Maine engagement photos

When we got back from dinner, Kyle’s dad and sister were both at the cabin, and it was so overwhelmingly wonderful to be surrounded by so much love. I still get teary-eyed thinking about how much effort and planning went into the whole thing. Not only did Jesse and Erin set everything up, but Cindy and Gary drove 4 hours to pick up Pops (and secretly Kyle’s dad) the night before, and Kyle’s sister surprised us by flying in from Florida. And then there’s Kyle, who orchestrated the Maine proposal of my dreams. I don’t know, y’all– I’m a lucky girl. 

As far as wedding planning goes, we haven’t made any firm decisions yet. We do know, though, that we’d love to get married in Maine. It’s a long way for our guests to travel, but it’s an incredibly special place for us, and it just feels right. I’ll keep y’all updated along the way, so let me know if you’d like to see any particular posts in the next few weeks/months. I’ll gladly take requests! Also, if you’ve made it this far, thanks so much for reading our long and sappy Maine proposal story! This post is obviously super special to me, and it means a lot that you took the time to read it. Have a great rest of your week, y’all!

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9 thoughts on “We're Engaged: Our Maine Proposal Story

  1. Emily

    This is so special and sweet to read! I hope to hear all the details you want to share on wedding planning and the like! This is such a wonderfully sentimental story! Thanks for sharing. πŸ™‚

    Reply
  2. Kristin

    Oh my gosh Steph! I teared up reading this of course. Thanks so much for sharing, it was the next best thing to being there. I can’t WAIT to celebrate with you two!!! xoxo

    Reply
  3. Susan Appenzeller

    Soooo happy for your two!! We have known Kyle since he became our neighbor when he was in 4th grade. He is good friend with our son and we love his family! Kyle has a heart of gold, cant say enough about him, they just dont come any better than that :)) We are sooooo happy he has met the love of his life!!

    Reply
  4. Deborah Eschenroeder

    I’m so lucky to have such an amazing son and now the most intelligent loving talented beautiful daughter-in-law. So happy you found each other. Such a blessingπŸ™πŸΌπŸ™πŸΌπŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ˜˜ I love you so muchπŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’—πŸ’—

    Reply
  5. Ela Eschenroeder

    Stephanie your proposal story is amazing! Congratulations to you and Kyle! We are so happy for you both. You guys are a cute couple and we wish you long happy life together. Lots of kisses and hugs from our little family πŸ˜πŸ’•

    Reply

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