Well... we did it!
The Final Intercept was a success.
So, here is what happened. Today, my birthday, the family woke up (sleeping in per usual) and all was normal. I mean normal as far as my birthday goes. I received some amazing gifts including a new laptop (to replace the one which was stolen last week), and a full booklet of letters from you guys.
Daesha collected letters from Cody’s House and co. The Shire, Heidi Ross, the Martch fam, Ellen & Emily, and more. Thank you. The notes were very touching and after delivering letters all month it was nice to receive some in turn. Very grateful for my friends and family.
After birthday celebrations Mom had the “bright idea” to go visit the lake. Shaver Lake, is my absolute favorite place on the planet. I have been coming up here my whole life summer, spring, fall and winter. My great grandparents first bought property and built a cabin here at the turn of the 19th century and it has been passed down for generations sent.
My Dad’s family even visited here in the 1970s, little did he know my Mom’s family had a cabin here. Although he likes to brag that he saw my mom on the lake and whistled at her. They didn’t know each other at the time, but they eventually were married and the family legacy continues.
At 2:30pm the fam began packing up to go “see the lake.” Daesha made a comment “you look really nice for just a hike.” I told her it was warm out so I didn’t want a jacket. She kind of bought it, but was suspicious.
One of my greatest friends growing up, Jacob Pierce, drove up from Fresno to help out. I gave him the responsibility of carrying the ring box since it would be too obvious in my jeans pocket. My brother Jonathan manned the drone. Connor Leeds, my sister’s boyfriend and talented photographer, manned the camera.
While my Mom and I were showing Daesha the family cabin, telling stories, looking at photos, and more everyone else was setting up the blanket and flower in “the Fort” on the beach.
”The Fort” refers to a tight collection of three large rocks. Growing up, my father, brother, cousins and I would come play here and use sticks, stones, a blue bouy, tree limbs, rope, pinecones, and more to build a “home” which we called “the Fort.” My Dad gets credit for suggesting this location. He reminded me, it is where you first began “building a home” and what better place to propose to Daesha—the woman who I want to build a real home and family with going forward.
I gave Daesha a big hint. Upstairs in the bunkbed room she found a note labeled “1” which said “I first began praying and dreaming about my future wife and family in this cabin...” True story. I prayed about the future a lot while staring at the ancient woodwork ceiling. This amidst all the family games, pranks, pillow fights and more which characterized growing up as a Carter grandson.
There was a small hiccup. Jonathan forgot the blanket with letter “E” note at the cabin. After touring the whole cabin...I received the text notice. My Dad was rushing back to retrieve it. The question was...how do we stall?
Praise the Lord for Aunt Trisha’s, “the love story of Ray & Judy” (my mom’s parents) booklet — which we had not seen yet — we all sat down at the cabin and went through the family photos, buying my Dad 20minutes to save the day. You should have seen how slow my mom was to turn the pages. It also helped that my grandma CC (Dad’s mom) was there to marvel and ask lots of questions—she really likes to appreciate art...especially family photos. Amen. It gave Dad enough time to grab the note.
My Dad came back, sneakily gave me the letter. We walked down to see Jonathan’s drone flying around. This didn’t alert Daesha, instead she understood why—Shaver Lake is stunningly beautiful.
We didn’t see Jonathan. So I suggested, “Maybe the are at the Fort.” We began walking that way. Sure enough, there they were.
As Daesha and I approached, I was nervous. This is it. A lifetime of growth, development, mentorship, faith, friends, family...the next stage of life was here. This was the moment. This was the decision. It was time.
Daesha saw the Fort, in its bare glory without our stick and stone improvements, and inside was a blanket with flower a top. She said “aww my last flower.” At this point she knew what was up. I signaled to Jacob with my hand behind my back to give me the ring box...he thought I was just nervous.
So, I gave Daesha note #2 which said “this is where I first began building a home” and #3 “The time has come.” Her eyes started to well up. I turned around and Jacob gave me the ring box, and then I looked Daesha in the eye, dropped down to one knee, and asked “Will you Marry Me.”
She said “I would love to marry you” and then gave me a huge hug, and said “Yaaayyy.” She was very happy. I think I was in shock, not because of her answer, but simply realizing that this moment I have prayed and dreamed and worked and prepared for was happening.
I am usually calm and collected in the moment and the emotions hit me after. This usually works in my favor as Daesha asked “Were you nervous? I couldn’t tell.” #win #mr.cool
Connor got pictures of the whole thing and Jonathan by drone. I put the ring on Daesha’s finger. She said “it’s beautiful” and “it fits perfectly.”
As Gabe Keller predicted over a month and a half ago “Jared is thinking... best birthday gift ever.”
23 is feeling good.
Day 1 (Nov 30) - Formal Longform (Anna)
Day 2 (Dec 1) - I (Peter) [Denver, CO]
Day 3 (Dec 2) - C (Ethan) [Denver, CO]
Day 4 (Dec 3) - E (James) [Denver, CO]
Day 5 (Dec 4) - C (Kelsey) [Denver, CO]
Day 6 (Dec 5) - R (Sam) [Denver, CO]
Day 7 (Dec 6) - E (Cody) [Denver, CO]
Day 8 (Dec 7) - A (Jared) [Washington, DC]
Day 9 (Dec 8) - M (Jared) [Washington, DC]
Day 10 (Dec 9) - ! (Jared) [Washington, DC]
Day 11 (Dec 10) - Y (Parker) [Washington, DC]
Day 12 (Dec 11) - O (Jared) [Washington, DC]
Day 13 (Dec 12) - U (Matt H.) [Denver, CO]
Day 14 (Dec 13) - A (Heidi R.) [Denver, CO]
Day 15 (Dec 14) - R (Ben S.) [Denver, CO]
Day 16.1 (Dec 15) - E (Pastor Dave) [Denver, CO]
Day 16.2 (Dec 15) - S (Mitch A. & Drew)
Day 17.1 (Dec 16) - O (Erica) [Parker, CO]
Day 17.2 (Dec 16) - V (Brennan) [Parker, CO]
Day 18.1 (Dec 17) - E (Caden) [Denver, CO]
Day 18.2 (Dec 17) - R (Dustin & Mitch J.) [Denver, CO]
Day 19 (Dec 18) - Y (Claire) [Denver, CO]
Day 20 (Dec 19) - P (Carlie F.) [Denver, CO]
Day 21 (Dec 20) - R (Mikayla) [Denver, CO]
Day 22 (Dec 21) - E (Marina) [Denver, CO]
Day 23 (Dec 22) - C (Abby) [Denver, CO]
Day 24 (Dec 23) - I (Anna) [Denver, CO]
Day 25 (Dec 24) - O (Michaela) [Parker, CO]
Day 26 (Dec 25) - US (Mom & Dad) [Parker, CO]
Day 27 (Dec 26) - T (Taylor) [Newbury Park, CA]
Day 28 (Dec 27) - O (Jonathan) [Newbury Park, CA]
Day 29 (Dec 28) - ... (Mom)
Day 30 (Dec 29) - M (Dad)
Day 31 (Dec 30) - E (Jared - Propose)