October 8, 2008 – Tonight I was in San Diego for work (which is just about every other week). After a few beers with coworkers I made the nightly “girlfriend call” and I mentioned to Christie that she should go to a jewelry store to get her finger sized so I knew what size ring to get. Obviously she was caught off guard and said that she wanted me to go with her because she was nervous. After a few minutes I agreed to go with her because that is the type of guy I am.
October 9, 2008 – When I got back from San Diego I went over to Christie’s for dinner since I had not seen her in 5 days. When I walked in the door she was really excited to see me and I just assumed it is because we haven’t seen each other in a while. We hug then move on to pressing matters; I was hungry and she had a burger on the George Foreman for me. After I finish eating it we turn on Grey’s Anatomy and within 10 minutes she said “I have a present for you.” Oh crap, I forgot it was our 1 year celebration of our first date tomorrow. I told her that I didn’t get anything for her and she didn’t mind. She handed me a card and I opened it to find a perfect card (won’t divulge what it said) and pictures of rings she tried on that she liked. That’s why she was so giddy!
October 14, 2008 – Today I planned on going to a jeweler to start the process but I chickened out justifying that I should wait to take care of it tomorrow since I needed to be around work in case something breaks.
October 15, 2008 – Today was the day I made my venture to the jeweler. I hemmed and hawed over if I should go or not but then I thought that if Christie could do it, so could I. I grabbed the pictures Christie gave me so I had a reference of what she liked and headed out the door. When I got in the elevator it felt like the floor dropped out but it was actually my stomach. For all the time I spent thinking about it this was the first time that it seemed real. I know it is the right decision but I am still nervous about buying a ring. Not for what it stands for but the fact that I am actually buying a ring. The one block walk to the jeweler went way too fast, I needed more time or some excuse to turn around but I couldn’t back out now. I went to the third floor where they are located and walked to the door to find out that they were closed for the day. DAMNIT. The journey continues….
October 16, 2008 – Today I made my way to the jeweler and when they asked me how they could help me and I stumbled over saying “I guess I need to look for an engagement ring.” Now this wasn’t their first rodeo so they maintained their calm while my stomach was doing some sort of exotic dance that I can’t do. I was introduced to a salesperson and told she would help take care of me. First off she wanted to know what I was looking for (aka how much I could spend) and she was very polite and helped put me at ease. She then disappeared into the back room and came back with a handful of pouches that contained different diamonds. Over the next 45 minutes she showed me various stones of different sizes, shapes and varying quality so I could see what I was up against. Wow, if I thought the decision was tough before it just got 100 times worse. She brought out round cuts, princess cuts, ascher cuts, radiant cuts and that is just the shape! I had to learn about clarity and color all the while trying to keep things in order so I knew what I was looking at and what I was looking for. She had me look at the diamonds through a magnifying piece and that was an art form all of it’s own. A couple times she pointed out imperfections and told me where to look and I just said “Yeah, I see that” even though I couldn’t see a damn thing. At the end I came out with some knowledge but still confused. I don’t know if I’m supposed to pick the ring first then pick the diamond that looks good in it or pick the diamond I want then pick a setting that makes it look good (I’m leaning towards the latter). Whew, time to breathe…
October 23, 2008 – Today I opened the flood gates. I setup a Google Document so Christie and I could put pictures and links to rings that we liked and she could add her feedback on them. No less than 20 minutes after I set it up and sent her the note was there a ring in there. Keep in mind, this is about 9:00 AM and we are both at work so it isn’t what either of us are supposed to be doing but that seem to get in the way. By lunch I threw in links to 3 rings I found and by 2:00 she left her feedback for me. When I got home from work there were about 8 more rings in there for me to look at. I gotta say, she has good taste and I’m sure I’ll be paying for it soon!
November 17, 2008 – Today I went to another jeweler to get a different perspective and I’m glad I did. When I told this jeweler what my budget was they said that wouldn’t be a problem and proceeded to show me diamonds that were 50% larger than the last store I went to. I really enjoyed my time with this guy and he made it seem like it wouldn’t be a problem to get the ring I want at the price I want in the timeframe I want (5 weeks from today!). As I was leaving he gave me his card and put down 4 websites I should look at to find the right ring for me. Being the managerial type that I am I gave the links to Christie and sent her to work. Soon there were about 24 rings in the spreadsheet for me to peruse so I could figure out what she likes, what she doesn’t like and hopefully I can come up with the perfect ring. 5 weeks seems like a lot of time but with my travel schedule I figure I need to be on the ball plus I have heard horror stories of guys getting messed up rings or delays in delivery. Gotta figure this one out soon.
November 29, 2008 – I just spent Thanksgiving with Christie’s family and it was a lot of fun. I met her brother and his two boys and they were very nice and did not put me through the ringer. We came home today and sat throgh 3.5 hours of driving home through a crazy storm but I had someplace to go. My jeweler, Lauren Diamonds, had some diamonds for me to see and I wanted to look at them today since I am leaving for San Diego tomorrow. They close at 3:00 and we were still in Georgetown at 2:45, uh oh. I called and they said they would stick around for me but I drove pretty fast since the roads were okay. Christie and I have been talking about getting engaged for a while so I told her I needed to run by my jeweler to look at some diamonds and she agreed to go there but not go in. When I got there Gary (the owner) asked if I wanted a beer…. Christie can drive, right? Helen (my salesperson) brought out a beautiful round diamond that is bigger than I expected and showed it to me and told me the surprising price. Before we looked at another diamond I said “done” and that was that. Now I have a diamond but I need to pick a setting…
December 1, 2008 – Today I needed to decide on the setting so I can get the ring by this weekend. I spent this morning pouring over hundreds of rings (again) trying to find the perfect ring. I printed out 5 that I thought were awesome and headed to Lauren Diamonds to get a better idea based on the catalog and price (I do have a buget after all). When I got there I quickly got rid of 3 of them because they can’t hold the diamond because it’s too big (BOOYAH) or cost half as much as the diamond. I was down to two rings and one really stuck out in my mind so I went with that one. Of course that was one of the first rings I found that I liked so I felt pretty good about it. Next thing I knew they had my credit card and we are off to the races.
December 6, 2008 – Today was a great day, sort of. I had this grand plan to pick up the ring then head straight up to Christie’s parents house to talk to them. I was hanging out with Christie before she left for for an overnight birthday celebration for a friend in Keystone but she didn’t leave until 12:30. I didn’t want to drive up there and get stuck or have a 3 hour drive home so I decided to head up tomorrow. After my lazy saturday morning I drove down to Denver to pick up the ring. When I got there they showed me the ring and it was awesome. I gave them my credit card again and boom, it was done. I left the store and I had my eye on everyone thinking that they knew I had a small fortune in my pocket and they intend to steal it. They knew I was a ninja so they left me alone. When I got to my car I decided to take another peek at it and again; I was in awe. I went home and looked at it some more. She has to love the ring, it is beautiful. Everywhere I went I took it with me to make sure nobody stole it.
December 7, 2008 – Today was the day I went to Christie’s parents house and begged them to let me ask her to marry me. This is a story all in itself so you will have to read that post.
December 9, 2008 – Today I added a couple of rings to the spreadsheet to try and throw Christie off some more so the the 12th (when I propose) is a real surprise. Tonight after dinner I had her pull them up to make sure she got a good look and I also had her pull up the ring I bought her. It was awesome, as she looked through about a dozen rings she kept the one I bought open the entire time and said it was her favorite. Now I feel really good about my decision and she will love it. I hope she doesn’t think I bought it after tonight…
Here it is