Lauren’s side of the story:
I’ve always loved bookstores, and Books Are Magic is one of the places that make New York feel like home. Every time we walk down Smith Street, I’m like, Should we go in? Tom always laughs: Are you going to buy something or do you just want to be in the presence of this store?
So, that morning, we had gone out to breakfast across the street with friends, and they said, can we jump into Books Are Magic to get a children’s book? I was like, Yes, It’s my favorite place, I’m always dragging people there!
I started wandering around the bookstore. All our friends were in the kids’ section. I didn’t realize it, but our friends were purposefully not coming near me, so I walked over to Tom and asked him what he was looking at. He showed me a wooden book (I later found out he had planted it there). It was painted with two olives, and one of the olives was proposing. I was like, that’s not a book — I was so confused! Then he opened the book to reveal a ring box inside and got on one knee and proposed.
I still had no idea what was going on. All of a sudden people had their phones out, and I was like, what is happening? I don’t even remember his asking! People were taking videos and the woman who works there was crying. Then I pieced it together. I was still carrying my to-go bag with a pulled pork sandwich! Somehow we got some photos without my takeout sandwich and incredibly confused face!
Tom’s side of the story:
Honestly, I was most nervous about having her find out — there were a lot of moving parts and people involved — so I was trying to make sure everyone kept their stories straight.
For the custom book that I put the ring into, I didn’t want it to be too mushy. Lauren has a lighthearted sense of humor — she always buys those funny greeting cards — and I wanted it to feel like that. Then I reached out to Books Are Magic to see if I could leave the book there on the day of the proposal.
The funny part was that the Books Are Magic folks put the book in the new fiction section. That was one part that I didn’t think through enough, and it turns out she doesn’t really browse in that section. She was bopping around in Staff Picks — and I was hanging out over in new fiction. After five minutes, I started worrying she might never come over! But finally, she did, and I was like, Have you heard of this book? She picked it up, opened it and saw the ring, and I kneeled down and asked if she would marry me. She was very, very surprised and shocked. She looked over and our friends were taking pictures. Then she started freaking out. The Books Are Magic staff member, Liv, was probably the most excited of all the people involved. She was crying the hardest!
I think it was perfect.
Congratulations, Lauren and Tom! So sweet, right? If you’ve been engaged, how did it go down? I also love the idea of just talking about it.