a peek inside the fishbowl

24 Nov, 2008

my personal history with chocolate advent calendars

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Misc. life

a.k.a. how I came to be engaged.

The Candy Store is hosting a special contest about sweet memories of the holidays. Winning entries will receive a gift card and have their story posted their website. (I should point out that The Candy Store is a patron of the Fishbowl, but I’m mentioning this only because it’s such a sweet little contest – no pun intended – and I thought you’d like to hear about it, not because I’m obligated to post about it in any way.)

When I learned about the contest it occurred to me that I don’t think I’ve ever shared the story of how Mark proposed to me. It’s related to candy. (Really!)

I always had a chocolate advent calendar when I was growing up and I never quite outgrew the idea. Mark and I had one (this is pre-kid days) and it was always a race to see who would get that day’s chocolate. It was December 16th. I guess we were coming home after work. We stepped in the door at the same moment. The chocolate! I made a dash for it, in fact, I may have even pushed him out of the way to get it. I remember it so clearly… running to the kitchen, finding the number, pushing my finger into the perforation and pulling at the little paper door and …

… the chocolate was gone.

In its place was a shining circle of gold and a sparkling solitaire. I turned to see Mark. His eyes were just as bright, and he was smiling. The next part is a bit of a blur. I do know this … I said yes.

We went to Mekong to celebrate. I remember thinking how blindingly beautiful that diamond was. I loved it, I did, I do.

6 Responses to "my personal history with chocolate advent calendars"

1 | porter

November 24th, 2008 at 9:44 am


i’ve got tears in my weepy old eyes!!! ohhhh mark, that was such a great way to propose.

on a totally unrelated note…..hey i see you’ve updated your ‘cursed to covet pretty things’ off to check it out….yeahhh!

2 | Chantal

November 24th, 2008 at 10:29 am


Ah how sweet. What a romantic! My story isn’t so romantic. We went away for the weekend to the Eastern Townships and on our way back I told him it was about time we got married. He agreed. So technically I proposed!

3 | Lynn

November 24th, 2008 at 11:39 am


That’s such a great story! Your husband is quite the romantic.

4 | Virtually There

November 24th, 2008 at 4:02 pm


That’s a great one. I love great proposal stories.

5 | This Girl loves to Talk

November 29th, 2008 at 5:18 pm


I love your blog.. am using lots of your ideas.. I added your advent envelopes from last year to a list of advent ideas I did for my Christmas in July posts

6 | The Candy Lady

November 30th, 2008 at 7:42 pm


I really think you should submit this story to the Sweet Memories contest. It’s up there with one of the best stories I’ve read so far!

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The Obligatory Blurb

My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human offspring: Emma (23) and Sarah (21). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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