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Grooms On What Happens Before Proposing

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His Proposal Story

How He Proposed

After a guy pops the question to his wife-to-be, she steals the show. She's got the ring, she's got the dress. She get's to tell her girlfriend exactly how he made her feel when he got down on bended knee. But there's a whole tale behind how he picked out the ring, how long he waited to give it to her and all the scheming he had to pull so that she wouldn't find out what he was up to. So we decided to ask some guys for their side of the story. Here, five married brothers tell us how they planned the perfect proposal.

Sheron Cloyd

"I already had the ring for a couple of months and I had been trying to find a way to give it to her; over dinner or something like that but it never seemed right.We had traveled quite a bit together so I thought, 'Oh let's go to Paris' and then I figured it would make sense to give her the ring there. I bought tickets for a trip to Paris and gave them to her as a Christmas gift.I thought that I could have easily done it at the Eiffel Tower, because I know people do it there, but I decided to give it to her on the last day of our trip.We went to the Moulin Rogue and on the way back to the hotel we decided to take a walk along the River Seine, and I thought that was the spot. I got on one knee, gave her the ring on my pinky. She was so happy.It was a nice trip.I guess you could consider it romantic.In terms of the ring, I had no clue what I was doing. I basically used the Internet as a way of educating myself about rings. According to my wife, Ahtis, I did pretty well."

Ray Franklin

"Early in our relationship Paula and I knew we were going to get married. So the decision to propose was just a matter of the right time. We had graduated from school and each been in the workforce for 2 years. So in early 2004, I went to visit her mother in Delaware to ask for her hand in marriage. After receiving her mother's blessing, I started the process of having her ring made in March of 2004 and proposed in August of 2004.

How I proposed is a long story... The short version... The first thing I put in motion was to call her sister in DC and have her put in place a story. The story was, her 10-year old nephew was acting in a play and really wanted his Aunt to attend. Once she arrived in DC, her sister called and made it seem as though her and the kids were close to the airport. Moments later, I pulled up in a Jaguar with a sign in the window that read "Are You Paula P.?" Once in the car, she knew that DC was going to be the place of our proposal. We jaunted to Neiman Marcus to buy a black dress, heels and the appropriate adornments to the evening. Then we began a journey to all of the iconic places that comprised our courting period while we attended Howard University. And finally off to campus for the pie de resistance. Along each stop she received a sunflower, her favorite. Once one campus, in front of the chapel on the lawn, I sat down at a keyboard and her in a chair across from me (holding a bouquet of sunflowers). I sang and sort of played Alicia Keys "If I Ain't Got You". Then walked from behind the keyboard, knelt on one knee and, in German, asked for her hand in marriage (she is half German). With a tear she said yes, we kissed. And then she spoke in to my ear, 'Can we get out of here the mosquitoes are getting to me...'"

Jonathan Johnson

I knew I wanted to marry Alinka on the first night we hung out. I told her "you're gonna be my wife." She said, "I don't even know you." I remember two weeks into us hanging out as friends, I was at her mother's house and I told her mom, "I'm gonna marry your daughter."

We were dating for a good year and a half before I really started looking. I didn't know anything about diamonds because Idon't really wear jewelry. I used her friends to get an idea of what she liked. Plus i got an idea of her taste just from being with her. Early on in the relationship we'd be walking around and we'd look at rings.

I didn't realize the gravity of what I was doing until I was buying the ring. It's a small thing, but what it represents carries a lot of weight. I was like 'my life will be changed from this moment on.'

I told her we're gonna go see a play and that it was a surprise so I took her to the mall and bought her a dress and took her to get her hair done. On the day that we were supposed to see the 'play' it was raining so I told it got canceled. I rented a nice car and my friend was our chaufer. She was blindfolded. My friend was speaking with an English accent to throw her off. We drove around and then went to the club house where I lived. It was a warm summer evening. I had covered the entire floor and the shelves in tea lights. I played romantic music. It was a really calm and serene atmosphere. We had dinner--sushi and champagne. Throughout the night I kept giving her little keepsakes from our relationship. For Valentine's day she had given me a box and written on it all the things that she loved about me. So I gave that to her and wrote all the things that I loved about her. And then I told her to flip it over and read the back. She looked at me and I got on one knee.She was nervous and started being really silly. I got nervous and my mouth got really dry. So I took a sip of champagne and asked her to marry me. Then everybody who helped me get it together came out and clapped. It was amazing.

Rashid Shabazz

I hate to be clich but with Rashida it was love at first sight. I proposed on August 13, 2009, and that was about six months after I had initially decided I wanted to get married. Around the first week in May, Rashida and a friend were visiting with another mutual friend named Lisa Lindhardt. Lisa has a jewelry design studio working in eco-friendly non-conflict diamonds and precious metals. Rashida asked me to meet them at her store. I knew at the moment I walked in that I had found the person to help guide me through the process. Besides doing some research online, I had no idea on cut, clarity or karat. All I knew was that rashida wasn't into the bling and didn't want anything over-the-top but I still wanted to do something nice.

I met a brother named Jason Eskridge at a men's retreat in May 2009. I bought one of Jason's CD's and I would play it every morning. Rashida and I loved the CD, especially two of his songs. A good friend who knows Jason connected the two of us when I was planning the details of the proposal and I asked if he would be in town anytime during the summer. He was going to be performing on August 14th. I went down to DC to visit her parents. I asked them if they would give their blessings for me to propose to their daughter. They thankfully said yes.

The plan was to propose on the 13th at the restaurant where we had our first date and then have us fly down to Miami the next morning. They sat us down at the same table we had our first dinner date. Jason arrived shortly after us and I told them to bring him next to us at a parallel table shortly after we finished dinner. Around 10:15 after dinner, the server brought Jason around with his guitar to a table behind us so it was perfect. He sat next to me and I asked if he would sing a song for her.

Jason ended up singing a song called "Get Together" and by the time he got to the last first he changed the words to say "He never known a girl like you, he wants to build his whole life with you." Then she realized what was happening. I was holding on to the box ring the whole time, after he finished singing and starting just playing the guitar I got down on my knee and opened the box and told her how honored I would be if she would be my wife and asked if she would marry me. She started crying and I started crying and we both hugged and she finally said yes. And then we both hugged Jason. A car picked us up at 10:45 in front of the restaurant and I told her I had actually gotten us tickets to fly out to Miami in the morning.

Steven James Dixon, author of "Men Don't Heal, We Ho"

"My wife was an aspiring actress so I had this idea of proposing to her during an audition. I called her agent and she was able to hookup a set with cameras and the works so it would look legitimate when my wife-to-be walked in. The place the agent booked is a place where auditions were commonly held so it was perfect. I wrote a script where a man would ask a woman to marry him. My soon-to-be-wife knew in advance that she would read the part with three different men. I got some of her male acting buddies to read for the part and ACTION! First actor reads the script with my wife-to-be where he proposes. Second actor reads the script with my wife-to-be where he proposes. Then I walk in to read for the part. My wife-to-be looks at me like 'Why you playing on my job! I don't come and play on your job!' I start reading to avoid confrontation. Once I started reading, she started reading, she is a professional. We read just about through the whole script and it wasn't until I was about to read the line 'Will you marry me' that she figured out what was going on. I got the part."

Watch video footage of our Will You Marry Me? grooms-to-be popping the question.
Filed Under: Bridal Bliss
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