A Valentine's Day Love Story in Des Moines
This Valentine’s Day will be unlike any I have ever experienced. My first Valentine’s Day as an engaged couple.
How We Met
Early in 2017 I met Matt. Not at a bar, or through mutual friends, but where many couples meet now-a-days, an online dating site. I remember stumbling across his profile and recognizing him from Iowa State University where we both attended college and were part of the Greek Community. We had several mutual friends and knew of one another but had never really connected. Separate circles in what turned out to be a small world.
After graduation, Matt moved out of state to pursue work in architecture. I moved to Des Moines and began my career in the hospitality industry. Fast forward eight years, after having lived in several different cities, Matt made the decision to move back to Des Moines where he had been recruited by a local real estate development company. Had it not been for a good job opportunity, reasonable cost of living and wonderful amenities Des Moines had to offer, Matt and I may never have met.
Our first date was dinner and drinks at the Stuffed Olive. We instantly felt a connection and decided we would put our first date on ice. We walked to Brenton Skating Plaza and each strapped on a pair of ice skates. Little did I know that Brenton would one day become our special place.
Our Engagement at Brenton
Nearly two years later we made plans to spend what I thought was just a normal night out with friends. We all met for dinner at St. Kilda with the intent of heading over to the East Village Promenade that evening. After dinner, we walked through the East Village speaking with the local vendors, listening to the carolers and touring shops. Matt seemed a bit quieter that evening as he is never short on words, but I didn’t think much of it. As we rounded the final loop and stopped at Della Viti, Matt insisted we go to Brenton Skating Plaza and our friends also seemed anxious to move along.
We all gathered for a picture by a tree at the Brenton that had been lit during a ceremony earlier that evening. Matt then asked a friend to take a photo of just the two of us. Right as the clock struck nine, fireworks sparkled across the skyline, and I suddenly realized Matt was no longer standing by my side to take a photo. He had dropped to one knee in front of me. The next few moments are ones I will cherish for the rest of my life. Our friends chanted in unison, “One, two, three . . . Say I Do!” as their camera lights began to flash. The shock was followed by a flood of happy tears and screaming cheers from the crowd nearby.
That entire evening had been planned out, down to the minute. And my family was there watching from afar. Our friends had all played a role that evening. For us, a seemingly normal annual event staged by the City of Des Moines had turned into so much more. I will look forward to the anniversary of this event for years to come. Brenton Skating Plaza will always hold a special place in our hearts.
Thankful for Each Other and for Des Moines
Since we met, Matt and I have made the most of our time together. With the travel perks our two jobs grant us, combined with the reasonable airfare rates out of the city, we have traveled together to Denver, Kansas City, Omaha, Philadelphia, Delaware, New York, Aruba, St. Thomas, St. Kitts, Barbados, St. Maarten, San Juan and St. Lucia. We purchased a house in the Beaverdale area where we live with our energetic Labradoodle, and we are looking forward to all the adventures to come. Living in Des Moines affords us to lead a very special life full of discovery, and for that, we are truly thankful.
Named as the #1 Metro with the Most Community Pride by Gallup, Greater Des Moines (DSM) is the fastest growing metro in the Midwest. Learn more about what it’s like to live here.