I am shaking right now. Writing this post gives me so much joy and excitement! Today I get to share with you how my best friend asked me to be his wife. If you have read any of my blog posts, you will notice the name Daniel all over the place. Daniel is my boyfriend, now fiancé! At the beginning of 2016 we decided to visit a difference coffee shop every weekend. We both love coffee and were realizing that the number of coffee shops in the Houston area was overwhelming. So, we decided to make a year adventure and challenge to go to a different coffee shop every weekend. It was a whirlwind year, we traveled quite a bit and made sure that any time we went out of town, that we visited a coffee shop. When we went to San Antonio we went to a coffee shop. When we were in Los Angeles we went to a coffee shop. Though we did not always go on the weekend, because some shops were only open weeknights, we managed to complete our year! That’s over 52 coffee shops! And most of them are in Houston or the outer edges of Houston. We went to Conroe, to Baytown, to Kemah. We went everywhere. The best thing is that there are still more coffee shops opening up all the time. At the end of 2016 we went to a few coffee shops that had just opened within the last month or so.
As 2016 came to an end, Daniel asked if I wanted to have our first coffee shop of 2017 be our favorite from the last year. The choice came down to two shops, Creative Grounds and Catalina Coffee. It wasn’t an easy choice either! We decided to go to Catalina Coffee because we had not been there in a while, and we were going to go see Christmas lights in Houston afterwards. I had not written a review for Catalina Coffee, as I did not start my reviews until halfway through the year. This gave me an opportunity to circle back and write a review. Little did I know that revisiting this shop was more than it appeared.
Daniel and I had gone towards the beginning of 2016 to Catalina Coffee. The first time we visited, a couple was taking their engagement photos. Ironic huh? The outside of the shop faces Washington and has two adorable tables to sit at. Really a perfect exterior for pictures, if you ask me. Forgive me there are not as many pictures this go around. The inside of Catalina Coffee is probably Daniel’s favorite shop because of its tables and chairs. They are super simple, but the wood and metal is a gorgeous combination. I cannot begin to tell you how many times I have heard Daniel talk about their tables and chairs. He loves! I mean LOVES them. There are tables for couples and then a few larger tables to accommodate more people. The chairs for the couple tables are small and simple, more of a bench than a chair though. No backing, but! Still comfortable. The seats are a longer bench for the large tables. The longest wall of the shop has a table/bench built into it. When sitting at this bench you are facing the wall, but Catalina is known for having local artist’s work up in the shop. As we have gone a few times, we have seen different art each time we have come through.
Catalina stocks themselves with plenty of coffees and teas. They also have started having specialty drinks or seasonal drinks as many of the shops like to call them. The first time we visited Daniel and I both had classic lattes. When we went at the beginning of this year, I had a Chai Latte and Daniel had a latte. Catalina gets their beans from Amaya Roasting Company. You might recognize the name as Creative Grounds also carries Amaya in their shop. Their teas vary during the seasons, but I have not had a single tea I have not fallen in love with. Catalina also has pastries delivered every morning, fresh and ready for the day.
Since we have gone a few times to the shop, I’ve had a different drink each time. Let me tell you I have never been disappointed, and neither has Daniel. You do have to add your own sugar and sweeteners, depending on what you order, and you’re preference towards sweet coffee or tea. The milk and the flavor is always fresh and never overwhelming. I am having a Matcha Lavender Latte as I write this, and I am in absolute heaven! Catalina Coffee gets a 4 out of 5 Stars for every part of their shop!
Ok! I’m sure you’re all wondering why I’ve avoided telling you about the proposal, so here is the story.
Daniel and I showed up at the shop about an hour before they closed. It was pretty crowded and a few minutes into us being there a huge group showed up, grabbed their coffee, and left. We assumed it was a church group or such that had just come from an event. I ordered a chai latte and Daniel had a regular latte. We sat down at one of the couple’s tables and waited for our coffee to come out. They brought out our coffee to us, but instead of the white cups you normally see, our coffees were in a green and teal cup. At the time I was a little confused, but decided not to say anything as I didn’t want to look silly if they had changed up their coffee mugs. Daniel kept trying to get me to pull my chair over to be next to him. Of course I had no idea why, I just figured he was being sweet and wanted to be close. I finally decided to pull my chair over to him when he asked about my bullet journal and wanted to know about how it was coming along for the January month.
Now that I think about it, he seemed rather nervous and on edge during our whole trip to the coffee shop and inside the shop. I know I had noticed it, but I just thought he was hungry, because we had not had dinner yet. Poor man can get a little hangry sometimes! Turns out it was for a whole other reason. As the time approached for the shop to close, I decided to run to the restroom before we finished our coffee and headed out. Up til this point I had been drinking my coffee quite quickly. Daniel kept telling me to slow down. I love chai lattes… I can’t help but drink them quickly! Little did I know that when I came out from the restroom, he would be standing holding my mug out to me and telling me to finish up so we could go.
I watched him gulp down his drink before finishing mine. As I sipped the last little bit of foam from the bottom I saw the words “marry me?” with a little diamond ring drawn beneath them at the bottom of the cup. My eyes went wide and I looked to Daniel in shock as he started to pull a box out of his pocket and guide me to be in front of him as he got down on one knee. I set down the mug and my hands flew to my mouth as I tried not to cry and managed to screech out a “oh my gosh, oh my gosh”. I managed to keep it together to hear what he had to say. I am truly proud of myself that I didn’t cry, but writing this right now it’s hard not to. I wanted to hear what he had to say, and I can tell you having a man get down on one knee tell you that you are his best friend and that he wants to spend the rest of his life with you is the most amazing thing in the world. And of course, I said, “YES!” In fact, I think I said yes over and over, so many times that I lost count.
I was so excited, but it only grew when I noticed my best friend standing close by holding her phone. She had caught the whole thing on video! The little sneak had been hidden at the front of the shop recording us over her shoulder. She also caught some adorable candid pictures of Daniel and I. My favorite is the one where I’m covering my mouth and staring at the ring as Daniel smiles at me. These two had been conniving for the last few months to set the whole thing up. Even to the point where they went to Catalina Coffee ahead of time to give them the cups and tell them when we would be arriving. Without my best friend this whole thing wouldn’t have happened and I wouldn’t have a video or pictures of the event.
I get to marry my best friend, a man who love God, who has so much wisdom and is a leader. He wants to pray with me, to pray for others, to attend church, and to serve those around him. What more could I ask for? The proposal was perfect and very much about us. With our love for coffee as well as our love for keeping things simple and personal, this was perfect. Yes, I’ve said perfect a ton! But it’s true.
I need to take a moment and say thank you to a few people. Thank you to Catalina Coffee for helping Daniel with the mugs and making sure I received the correct cup for Daniel’s proposal. Thank you for letting us create such a wonderful memory in your store. Thank you to Heather for helping Daniel with the proposal. He couldn’t have done it without you girl! Never forget you’re a huge part of our lives and you cannot get rid of us! Thank you to Madeleine Frost for the gorgeous pictures for our engagement (tagged accordingly). Guys please go check out her website. She is so talented and such an amazing woman! Thank you Mom, Dad, and little bro for giving Daniel permission to ask for my hand in marriage. I cannot wait to have him officially part of the family! Lastly, thank you to Daniel. I love you dearest and I cannot wait to marry you!
May your coffee be strong and your faith stronger.