Last year, Carson and I moved to Charlotte - it was a great opportunity for our careers, and a new step in our relationship. We would be on our own in a new place, relying on each other for support and companionship as we took on a fresh challenge. A month after our move, we were excited to have Carson's family come visit to celebrate her birthday.

It's possible one of us was a little more excited than the other.

After several meetings with the jeweler and several months searching for the perfect stone, I finally had Carson's engagement ring. We had been talking about marriage for some time, but the arrival of that little box suddenly made things very real. After four years of falling further and further in love with her, I was finally going to ask this brilliant, beautiful girl to spend the rest of her life with me.

I devised a plan.

As we finished Carson's birthday dinner, I made a flimsy excuse to leave early and headed back to our house. There, I placed clues for a scavenger hunt that would lead Carson through our house and ultimately back out the front door, where I would be waiting with the ring. Carson's parents and sister were in on my scheme, and stalled at the restaurant to give me time to arrange everything.

Carson worked her way through the clues, while I waited, on one knee, outside the front door. There, I had plenty of time to feel my excitement (and nervous energy) build. I tried to peek through windows to figure out how the scavenger hunt was unfolding, my heart nearly beating out of my chest. Finally, I heard Carson approach the front door. Between the nerves and the joy, I wasn’t sure if I could get out any words at all. But then the door knob turned and I saw her face, and I knew I’d arrived at the moment I’d been waiting for since the day we met.

“Will you marry me?”