On January 21st of this year, I wrote this post about my single little brother... "Uncle Brycie". I wrote it on a whim, without his knowledge, and linked it up to this "Singles Blog Party". I remember staying up until 2 or 3 am writing the post; pondering just how mad he would be when/if he found out about it, and at the same time, entertaining the very slim possibility that he might actually meet someone as a result of my meddling.
About a week after posting, I called and asked him to come over for the evening. He was immediately suspicious of my invitation and responded by saying... "What did you do? Sign me up on Facebook or something?"
"Not exactly" was my response!
He (reluctantly) came over.
I told him what I did.
He rolled his eyes and heavily sighed.
I asked him to at least look at the post.
He (begrudgingly) read what I wrote.
I told him he seemed to be quite popular based on the number of comments on his post.
He rolled his eyes again.
And then we spent nearly 2 hours, sitting at my kitchen island, looking through the blogs and comments of the girls who had commented as being interested in him.
There were several more eye rolls, a comment from him about this "being awkward", and a lot of encouraging on my part to at least follow up with a few of the girls.
He left my house with a single piece of paper in his hand; it was covered with email addresses and descriptions of interested girls.
But I had little to no hope that he would do anything with it!
After many years of being single, and enduring several broken hearts, I think he had come to a point in his life that he had little to no hope that he would ever meet the right person. Dating, online matchmaking, set-ups... it all seemed hopeless and probably pointless to him.
A few days later, he called to tell me....
He had lost the paper!
The paper we spent hours working on. The one with the names, email addresses, and contact information... that paper!
While this didn't surprise me, I figured it was more than likely his way of putting this whole blog post thing to rest. And so I left it alone and did nothing more.
He did make contact with a few of the girls...
On his own!
He figured out how to get into the comment section of my blog and found a few of the email addresses... on his own!
And pretty quickly, he and one of the girls began to email/text on a fairly regular basis. My brother keeps his personal life pretty personal, but every once in a while, I would ask if he was "still talking with 'blog girl from Kansas City'". He usually responded with a simple, one word answer...
And then came March 3rd .
It was the last KU home Basketball game of the season. Vance and Noah drove to Lawrence for the game. Bryce had declined Vance's invitation to join them "because he had to work." So Vance invited a friend from Lawrence to join him in the extra seat. When that friend arrived at the game, he casually mentioned to Vance that he had just seen "your brother-in-law." Vance protested that it couldn't have been Bryce, but his friend said he was 99% sure it was him. So Vance asked who he was with and the response was...
"A girl with brown hair."
With a quick text, Vance confirmed that Bryce was, in fact, at the game....
"On a date." (that was the extent of his texted response!)
His efforts to keep this meeting private (so as to avoid questions from me and my mom!) proved futile... he was caught! And that game marked the 1st official date between "Uncle Brycie" and the "Blog Girl from Kansas City."
The next morning, I couldn't help myself. I had to call him and ask for details. As expected, he didn't offer much; but he did offer that he had had a great time and that "she is really sweet."
From that point forward, he casually mentioned her upon occasion... She had sent him cookies in the mail. He liked that she was low maintenance. She likes to cook. She likes to fish. She is really sweet.
So without him sharing too much, it started to become more obvious that he and "blog girl from kansas City" were spending more and more time together. At one point, I recall him telling me that he thought he "had gotten really lucky this time."
I didn't get an opportunity to meet the mystery "blog girl from Kansas City" until the end of May. But when I did, I could tell that she and my brother had some kind of a special connection. And I learned that she does, in fact, have a name! It is Toi.
Fast forward to Sunday, November 13th...
They got engaged!
For once, my meddling paid off and and my entire family could not be more thrilled!
It is my opinion, though, that all of this was part of a plan orchestrated by the One who is bigger than myself. The blog, my written words, the Singles Party... all of these were simply tools used to bring that plan to fruition.
This plan that has now unfolded is, quite simply, an answer to many heartfelt prayers!
And Toi is wonderful...
~ She makes my kids play dough - from scratch!
~ She saved me from having to cook and bring food to a picnic - she did it for me!
~ She bought me a beautiful birthday gift.
~ She is the influence and the reason our family now occupies two additional seats in our pew on Sunday mornings.
~ She made the kids the cutest Halloween treats!
~ She adores my kids - and they adore her!
~ She bought my kids special plates and silverware to eat with when they come to her house.
~ She has embraced my entire family.
~ She babysits for me when I need help... and offers to do so even when I don't!
~ She knows how to take good pictures... and has offered to help me!
But even if she did none of those things, she would still be wonderful! Because the very best part about her is that she loves my brother. She makes him happy!
And that makes me happy! Very happy!
To bring this surprising and unexpected story to a close, I'll end by telling you that Toi relocated to Wichita from Kansas City and started a new job here in late summer. She and Bryce have joined our church and plan to get married at St. Catherine of Siena in the Fall of 2012. And after that...
Well, they will both get the Happily Ever Afterthey have dreamed about!
(And hopefully they will give my kids some cousins to play with - wink!)
Congratulations to "Uncle Brycie" and
"Blog Girl from Kansas City"
(soon to be "Aunt Toi")