today I stop eating. bride diet style.

I am supposed to be sleeping. But how can I possibly sleep, I keep having to go to the bathroom, turn on the light and look at MY RING.

Engagement ring!

I can't believe it either!

{here's what happened...} we are in north carolina for the beginning of a four day whirl wind trip. Yesterday, brad insisted we go for a walk on the beach.

Naturally, I agreed.

We are AT the why not walk on that thing...

We have been to California three times together and have never walked on the beach there, so I should have known something was up.

Here's the thing! We could not find the beach...we drove in circles forever looking for it. I kept saying, "let's just go back to the room, it's no big deal."

He was insistent that we put our toes in the sand. I like toes in the sand, so I just went with it.

(side note: my cell was dead, this was not a big deal BEFORE the beach)

Because I am a girl in love, on a trip with a guy I love, I kinda thought...maybe...this was it. Then earlier in the day, I decided this:

1. No way he had a ring
2. He was not acting weird.
3. No way he had a ring.
4. He was not acting weird.

And I texted this (one of the contributing factor to my dead cellular) over and over to my ONLY friend who KNEW about the ring.

And I thought I knew him...



We find the beach {after forever}, I have mud soaked through my favorite ballet flats from earlier in the day. Blisters on each foot. Had not showered. Hair slicked back in a pony make up. (your thinking...poor guy...)

Me too.

Can you get the beauty? I mean, knock out.

So I was taking pictures a 100 miles a minute because that's what I do. After taking pictures of the ocean (that all look the same) for


He said, "I need you to put your camera away."


My camera? Away?

What ARE you talkin' about. We don't PUT him away.

How rude.

I said, "like away. away?"

He said, "away."

Now I was mad. Just kidding.

So I put the camera away. And he said okay, shut your eyes.

I shut my eyes...kinda.
(I never was good at hide n seek either.)

The next thing I know, he is on one knee with a ring in his hand and said those words that a girl waits her whole life to hear.

And I said...

I don't really know what I said...somewhere in there, there was a YES. and then I started shaking and still haven't stopped.

(That is why it is early morning and I am in the bathroom with the light on just to look a my ring.)

We called our parents, I texted a bazzilion people (once my phone was charged!), did a happy dance and last but not least...

Made it facebook official.

And today I feel really loved, blessed and POPULAR.

Trust me, there's more to come. But for now, I should leave the bathroom, he's gonna start to worry.

Thank you ALL for the sweet notes, comments, text and emails. I am surrounded with an incredible support system and irreplaceable friends. You all made me cry.

It was worth the wait. I can't wait to be mrs. brad dukes.


Sent from my iPhone


Alicia said...

just so you know, i'm still a little teary eyed this morning just thinking about it! i know it has nothing to do with me, but if ANYONE has ever deserved to be truly happy, it's you! I am so very excited for you (and him too)!

Anonymous said...

I saw the news on Facebook last night and was excited to hear from you today how he did it! I know you don't know me, but I know Brad and I've enjoyed your blog so much. Congratulations to you both!

FreeFlying said...

I am SO happy for you both!

Sarah said...

Jessica, this is great! It's a great story and I am glad that your camera is part of the memory and story. How fitting. :) I am going to need a timeframe here. We have so much to do! Congrats again!

Peyton D said...

Looks like you will be my sister in law, Jessica! Congratz!

jessica said...

Girls! Thank you thank you thank you!!! I'm so excited and overwhelmed! More than anything I feel really blessed! Thank you for your sweet comments.

Peyton, yep...looks like we are going to be family, brother-in-law... better brush up on my twin peaks knowledge so y'all will keep me around! :-)

Kay said...

Jessica, I have loved following your blog and now I sincerely congratulate you, altho i think i'm supposed to congratulate the groom and not the bride but anyway, I am so happy for you and I can just hear your momma now! The planning is going to be fun. Looking forward to the posts!

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