Chances are if you follow this blog you already know…Robyn and I got engaged on Friday! Ah!

But since Facebook comments and Tweets are limited, we wanted to tell the story for those curious about the HIMYM reference and the yellow umbrella in the pictures.

The Background
This has been in the works for a few weeks and required more lying than I was comfortable with. That and Robyn can usually sniff out a surprise before someone even thinks of it because she is usually the one planning it.

One particular lie included some familiar faces, thank you Chris Conzen and Tom Krieglstein for being willing alibis while I ran to Jersey on my day off to pick up the ring. Luckily, Robyn was in Fairfield visiting friends Meredith and Adam while I went to the DMV and “hung out with Tom and Chris” for the day. Did I mention the part where I caught a train from Queens, to Penn Station, to New Jersey, back to Penn Station, to Grand Central, to Stamford? Oh because that happened.

Bottom line about the background, this was long overdue. Allow me to recognize Robyn’s (worn down to nothing) patienceย during my stint at my alma mater serving in a dream job there. This “delayed” our lives together for almost two years which meant two additional years of long distance for us. (Two years that put more strain than anything else we’ve experienced on us.)

The Set Up
In my current position I have been afforded many spontaneous opportunities to participate in events such as Yankee games, Broadway shows, and networking opportunities. Since these were common, I used this to my advantage in getting Robyn where I needed her to be.

I had ordered the HIMYM umbrella weeks ago and left it in CT for hiding since I expected to be there for the 4th of July to see my sister (her birthday). That didn’t happen which resulted in ordering a second umbrella and having it shipped to our friends, Rachel and Dave’s apartment. (Rachel is in the pictures, Dave took the pictures).

The Day Of
I go to work, Robyn has the day off and heads into the city to see her good friend Marni. I text Robyn as she gets into the city to let her know we’ve been invited to an event tonight. Details to follow. Then over the next few hours I act as if I am getting information slowly from my supervisor.
“Semi-formal, not sure what time.”
“Ok, semi formal. 8:30 p.m, Uptown.”
“Lots of ppl on vaca, we can bring friends.”
“Dave is in, he will talk to Rachel.”

Mind you, this entire time Marni is telling Robyn not to go (Marni is one of Robyn’s closest friends and one of the first of her friend’s that I met. Basically, it was critical that Robyn got Marni’s stamp of approval of me. Thankfully I passed after one dinner out with the two of them ๐Ÿ™‚ ) ย That and Robyn doesn’t want to go because that means leaving the city only to go back into the city. It took 20 minutes to talk her into going.

Dave and I meet up and head to Lincoln Center to go over game plans. This is followed by nachoes and sangria which helps calm me down. (Thanks Dave for being an awesome wingman!)

We head over to Lincoln Center and I look like this.

Photo Credit – Dave Bloom

For the HIMYM memory, we shot this one.

The ring is Robyn’s Grandmother’s Engagement Ring from over 65 years ago. It was unlike anything we found in any jewelry store. Photo Credit – Dave Bloom

After more pacing and walking around, Dave heads to his position so he can meet the girls as they are getting off the train. I forgot to mention that Rachel convinced Robyn to get dressed up and not to bring a bag while they got ready. Thanks Rach! She also provided wine which put them both in a good mood for an awesome, carefree night.

The Plan
Dave will meet the girls at the train station and walk them over to Lincoln Center where the imaginary work event will happen. The plan was to have them pose for pictures in front of the fountain while waiting for me to come out and meet them.

As they are at the fountain, I would approach from one side…

Here I come…they still have NO idea. (Another Dave Bloom shot!)

Did I mention that I also arranged for Robyn’s parents to be there? Because that happened! They approached from the other side of the fountain with video camera in hand.

So I cross into the picture, and poke my head out from under the umbrella…

Why are you so dressed up? – Robyn

Because this has nothing to do with work, this has to do with us. – Me

I believe she was thinking, “OMG OMG OMG”

Now I had a whole speech planned. Here is a shot of me not being able to form words or open the box because I was shaking so much.

So…will you spend the rest of your life with me?

Is this the right hand? Does it fit? Notice the parents in the background, she didn’t see them at this point.

And that’s how it happened. That’s How I Propose To Your Mother. – Me, in 2032.
(Note the Jolie Leg-esque meme right behind Robyn. HAHA)

We had to go silent from that night until Saturday afternoon. We made a special effort NOT to make it a social media madhouse right away. First we traveled to MA to tell my Dad, Step Mom (Cathy), and two step bros (Ryan & Tyler). I have pictures of their reactions, it was awesome. Next we drove to CT to tell my Mom, Sister (Mel), Step dad (Kevin), 3 step sisters (Faithy, Maddie, Kayla), and step brother (Gordie). We have pictures of my mom’s reaction. AWESOME!

From there (still same day) we drove down to NJ for our nephew’s first birthday party taking place on Sunday. Knowing that many family members who aren’t typically all in one place would be there, we had to figure out the best way to do it. We have pictures of their reactions, also awesome. Marissa wins for instant tears of joy.

After the party we did the “its Facebook official” where honestly, we’ve been blown away from the response. Same goes for Twitter. I was actually able to capture most of the tweetsย here. The best I could do to keep up on Facebook was LIKE every single post on my page to let people know I saw your post.

Between the two of us, we simply cannot come up with a way to thank everyone individually for their congratulations, well wishes, and shared happiness with us. Our hope is that you are reading this and know that we are extremely appreciative and thankful for the support you’ve all shown. We wouldn’t have got to this day without most of you thanks to your random acts of kindness, encouragement, and caring.

Thank you, thank you, thank you. We mean it and hope this let’s you know it.

Rock on!

Side notes:

7-6-2012 was the actual day which 7-6 happens to add up to 13, Robyn’s favorite number.

The fountain was picked due to Robyn’s love of the Fairfield University DSB Pond fountain. It was her favorite spot on campus. (Also, shout out to Kristen Rupert to affirming that that was indeed one of the nicer places in NYC to do it.)

When I got on my knee a random flash mob of people formed a circle around us taking pictures and clapping. This was NOT planned. It was like being in a movie. Ridiculous.

We aren’t delaying a thing. Hoping the next BIG BIG day is in the next 12 months. The BIG day for us in the next 2 months when I become officially part of the “tribe” 0:) <- (Not a halo, if you catch my drift.)

21 thoughts on “HIPTYM not HIMYM

  1. Joe and Robyn,

    Thanks for sharing this with us – your Twitter/Facebook student affairs family. I am so excited for you all! Although the distance was hard, you all prove that love makes it all worth it in the end. I truly wish you the best! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Wait until you see what I have for ideas for the wedding day Brian – should be awesome if I can get it all to flow the way I’m envisioning it.

  2. joe i am so proud of you you have grown up to be a great and caring person.we have been lucky to be in your life.you did a perfect engagement one you can always remember. keep up the great work looking forward to the big day.
    love you the nuzzetti’s

    • Haha Adabu40, I still remember that AOL Screen name!

      Awesome ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for the kind words Lee, Arnold, Cara, Brianna! See you soon I hope. Need to work with Mom about engagement party to figure out if we’re having one or not up in MA.

  3. Joe and Robyn,
    I am sooooo happy for you two! I just want to say that I felt the love you two have when you both came to visit Steph and I a few months ago. Your love has given me hope that I too, will find my prince. Thank you for sharing your story with us! May your life be filled with love and happiness. xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxooo

  4. Robyn & Joe, We read every word and certainly felt the excitement with your detailed descriptions and photos. This really made us feel as thought we were there. Mazel Tov and we are delighted that your careers led you to the “love of your life”. Of course, I teared up reading and seeing the actual proposal. Thanks for sharing your special moment with us. Love, Mindy and Steve
    PS I really didn’t get the umbrella HIMYM. At first I thought it was how Joe met your mother…meaning for approval in the family. Now that I get the real meaning, I think whoever thought of it was quite creative.

    • Mindy, thanks for reading! Glad to hear it had that effect, that’s what we were hoping for ๐Ÿ™‚

      The HIMYM reference was from this show, not sure if you are familiar with it, http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0460649/. The yellow umbrella is a symbol in the show. If you have Netflix, HIGHLY recommend watching it from the start. It’s one of our favorite shows!!

  5. So happy for you both!!! May you enjoy every single moment of this special time in your lives! Hugs to you both! Love, Ann Marie

    • Thank you thank you thank you ๐Ÿ™‚ Always appreciate the support, kindness, and positive vibes you send us AMK! ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Congratulations to you and Robyn!!! Very well thought out and photographed!! I wish you both a lifetime of happiness ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Joe – Such a great story! Congratulations to you and Robyn! Wishing you many years of happiness together. ๐Ÿ™‚

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