Category — Engagement Stories
In November 2007 I received the following email from a friend who had recently moved away (the subject line read “Blind Date?”):
Hi Elisheva, How are you? So nice to see you last month. Question: are you interested in being fixed up? My good friend’s brother is a 40 year old architect in sf. Cute, nice, great family. What do you think? All the best, serena
Soon after replying in the affirmative, I received the next email:
Greetings, I am Karen’s brother who is friends with Serena, who I understand to be your friend as well, and it seems as though the two of them are trying their hands at match making so it seems like the only polite thing to do is for us to get together and test their match making skills. Other than the fact that you know Serena the only other thing I know about you is that you are a member of the tribe, might be a teacher and that I don’t know how to pronounce your name. But I suppose that what first dates are for.
What do you think dinner? Drink after work? Let me know what your schedule looks like or if you have a questionnaire you would like me to fill out first.
It made me laugh. There were a few grammatical errors which I overlooked. And even though he might be a super nerd, it was worth at least meeting this brother-of-a-friend-architect-single-guy-in-San-Francisco.
So I replied:
I’m very pro-dinner, generally speaking. Usually on the late side. And company is always better than eating alone.
So, yes, I’ll take you up on the dinner offer.
No questionnaire for you to fill out (though it sounds like you’ve had some … uh… ‘experience’) I’m sure I could think of some deeply important questions to ask online, but probably the most relevant would be when and where?
I am indeed a member of the tribe– and often I say about myself that I’m the Jewish Yahoo, in that I’m pretty connected to the “Jewish” part of my identity.
We can discuss this more in person (or on line).
I continued the reply, sharing how I knew our mutual friend, joking about the questionnaire—even asking a question (if you could meet one person in history, who would it be and why?) and finished the post…
As for my name, it’s pronounced like this: Ellie-Sheh-Vuh (and rhymes with “whatevah”)
I look forward to meeting you, Bob.
We can tilt our glasses to the matchmakers, whether they are on to something or not.
January 25, 2010 6 Comments
My fiancé Matt and I met during the summer of 2005. While working out at the gym one evening, in walked a tall and handsome red head. (I’ve always had a thing for red heads.) When he walked over to talk to my friend who was a mutual friend of ours, I was secretly excited and yet fully embarrassed. See, I had just finished a spinning class and I’m a sweater –a hardcore sweater. Trust me, it wasn’t pretty. We met, he left the gym shortly thereafter, and I forgot about it.
One night I was having frozen yogurt with my friend, and he texted her from his family trip to Israel. It was of a picture of a Doritos bag in Hebrew. I think I fell in lust right then– a man who appreciates all that is Israel! At the time, I had just graduated from college and was interning at home before moving to Israel for a year.
Once Matt returned from his trip, my friend and I had a chance to hang out with him again, and once my friend went back to college, Matt and I had an opportunity to hang out alone. I had only three nights until I flew to Israel for the year, but they were most definitely three of the most romantically exciting nights of my life. We talked for hours on the beach every night. We learned that we grew up going to the same synagogue, our parents have known each other for years, and our homes were within a mile of each other. But most importantly, our first kiss was the most electrically charged kiss ever. It probably helped that it was in the ocean under a full moon. Matt and I had so much in common, it was just too good to be true. I left for Israel the next morning, and Matt went back to Carnegie Mellon. After three months and a couple of $500 phone bills, we decided a long distance relationship wasn’t ideal for either of us. [Read more →]
September 3, 2009 5 Comments
C-A-N-E-S, CANES! My future hubby and I met at the University of Miami; in particular, at a football game at the legendary Orange Bowl (may she rest in peace). It was our freshman year in college and while the sparks between us were not immediately electrifying (not every relationship can begin in slow motion with wind whipped hair), we had two things in common: we had the same group of friends and we were huge Miami football fans.
My future hubby and I in college.
Two years and many unfulfilling relationships later, we began spending more time together thanks to a mutual friend. After two months of being “just friends,” we finally expressed our interest and feelings for each other on a hammock looking up at the night sky. Ok, collective “Awww.” Yes, we were kind of romantic back in the day, but to be honest we are just a normal couple with two adorable cats (our kids for the time being), Gotham and Shadow.
Then an arbitrary day came in November 2007. We had tickets to a show in Downtown Miami and afterwards, while stuck in traffic, my future hubby asked if we could go to the infamous South Beach to see the Miami skyline. Of course, being a doctoral graduate student in clinical psychology, I wanted nothing more than to go home and get sleep before seeing eight clients the next day. Oh, and did I mention, it was pouring! Not the drizzle of Seattle (where my future hubby grew up) but the monsoons of South Florida! Luckily for me, he would not take no for answer and drove out to the beach.
Giving me a piggyback ride to the shore, he set me down. I turned and stared at the beautiful skyline of Miami when he grabbed my hand. I turned around to see he was on one knee, in the wet sand, in the rain, and asking me to marry him! My response was what any girl would say in this situation; “Is this for real? No seriously, is this for real?” To which he replied, “You can say no if you want too, but, I didn’t prepare for that.” After realizing this was in fact, for real, I accepted with tears streaming down my face. And the rest is history.
My amazing engagement ring!
After allowing the initial shock to set in for a couple of days, we began the long, two year process of planning our wedding, which is the ultimate feat! We are attempting to create a DIY Winter Wonderland on a December evening in Miami, Florida! Oy vey. While my fiancé is not Jewish, he is open to including most of the essential components of a Jewish wedding (much to my Jewish mother’s delight!). We are getting hitched under a chuppah that we are constructing ourselves (oy), having a ketabuh signing ceremony, and a mostly Jewish ceremony. We want our guests who are not Jewish (my fiancé’s family and most of our friends) to learn about and share in the Jewish culture and traditions. Our wedding date is also the first night of Hanukkah so are planning on including a menorah lighting ceremony during the reception! Maybe we should add some potato latkas and applesauce. Just a thought!
September 1, 2009 4 Comments
Five years. That’s how long Rick and I have been together. Four-and-a-half years. That’s how long we have been living together. In other words, people have been asking us when we’re getting married for a long time. Now we finally have an answer: this December.
Rick and I last Thanksgiving.
Getting him to smile for the camera is on our wedding to-do list.
Rick and I first met back when we were in college, about nine years ago. We both debated for our respective universities and were competing against each other at a debate tournament. “Was there a spark then? Could you see the chemistry?” people often ask, hoping for an exciting story. There was, in fact, none of that. We debated, he and his partner won, and we went our separate ways.
Three years later, our paths crossed again when we both taught at a summer debate workshop for high school students at my alma matter. Another year passed before we started dating.
By then, the chemistry was obvious. He was funny. He was handsome. He was smart. He cooked. But he wasn’t Jewish. I’d always been one of just a handful of Jews in my class until college, though, so I was used to having to explain my customs and holidays.
A year after we started dating, he enrolled in a Ph.D. program some seven-plus hours from the apartment we shared in Brooklyn, and I followed him to Buffalo, New York. We knew we wanted the same things for our future, but decided to table the discussion on the whens and hows of the future until closer to the time he completed his Ph.D. program.
We re-kindled that discussion about a year ago after a three-year hiatus. Most of our conversations started with how we’d raise our children. Despite being raised Baptist, Rick didn’t identify with a religion and was perfectly happy to raise them Jewish. He liked the sermons he had heard when he went with me to services during the High Holidays. He liked the Jewish emphasis on tikkun olam, the concept of healing the world. [Read more →]
August 31, 2009 2 Comments
If you’ve watched watched any movie geared towards women in the last 20 years, then you’re all-too familiar with the significance of The Little Velvet Box. Inside this box is something very special and usually something very expensive– inside this box, you’ll find an engagement ring.
Sometimes they’re big and sometimes they’re little, with a sprinkling of diamonds all around, or just the one important one in the center. Our Knight in Shining Armor brings it to us upon bended knee, after riding day and night across many lands on his white horse, storming castle walls and braving ogres and giants to serenade us with songs about how much he loves us. He even swims across deeps moats–which is hard when you’re wearing all that armor! He sweeps us off our feet and we ride off into the sunset, happily ever after.
However, my now-fiancé doesn’t know how to ride a horse, and he certainly can’t swim despite having grown up in Florida. So I took the reigns of my own great steed, and like a true Type A personality, I ended up doing the popping and questioning myself. Yes, I proposed to my boyfriend first. He was initially a little taken back and flustered, but he did say “Yes.” There was no epic song or moat. There wasn’t even a ring. I just said “We’re going to get married!” and that was that. [Read more →]
August 26, 2009 6 Comments