Only the ring was off-key
Knowing that her boyfriend, Travis, was going to propose, Mary Apel knew one thing: She wanted to pick out her own ring.
"I didn't want to be surprised and not like it. And I didn't want to have to lie every day for the rest of my life," Mary said.
So she and Travis purchased the ring together before he proposed.
Travis and Mary both graduated from Century High School, she in 2001 and he in 2002. So there was a "little bit of age difference there," Mary said.
But it wasn't until her sophomore year in college that the two began dating. The couple dated for about four years. Mary knew the question was coming; she just didn't know when or where.
So one chilly fall day, months after Travis had bought the ring, the two were walking near Silver Lake and found themselves in a secluded, somewhat private area. Mary was wearing a sleeveless zip-up without a hood, and her ears were cold. Travis was wearing a hooded sweatshirt. She suggested that they switch clothing "because we are only halfway around."
As her head emerged through sweatshirt's neck opening, Mary saw that Travis had dropped to one knee. In the pouch of the sweatshirt was the ring.
"I was surprised. I had no idea. We were holding hands in the pouch, and I had no idea that the ring box was there," Mary said
Mary and Travis have been married for 10 years. Mary is a kindergarten teacher at Holy Spirit School. Travis works in finance at IBM. They have three children, Malia, 8, Max, 6, and Sienna, 4.
"I was completely off guard," Mary said, looking back on the proposal. "Of course, I said yes. I did have to give him a hard time. I said, 'Oh Travis, I don't know if I like that ring.'"