How they met:
Although Carlos and Barbara both attended Santa Clara University during two consecutive years, their paths did not cross until several years later when they met through mutual friends. They initially had a relationship as friends, until one fateful night in October 2006 when a concert by the band The Killers brought them much closer together. They began to explore their feelings for each other and eventually crossed the threshold from friendship to courtship.
Barbara has been taking dance lessons at Tude’s School of Dance since she was a little girl. Every year, Tude’s puts on a dance recital to showcase all the hard work that the dancers have done over the preceding 11 months. As part of this recital, they have a “Partners’ Dance” where the boyfriends, husbands, sons, fathers, etc. of the ladies share the stage with them for a number. After some convincing (Barbara was already in seven numbers excluding the partners’ dance), Barbara agreed to do the Partners’ Dance with Carlos.
At this point (late December ’09), Carlos’ plan was in motion. As rehearsals got started in late February, Carlos approached the studio owner and the Partners’ Dance instructor and asked their permission to let him propose to Barbara at the dance show. They were thrilled that their beloved student of so many years would be getting engaged, and quickly agreed. They insisted that Carlos propose at the Saturday, June 5, 2010, 6 p.m. show, which, as it just so happens, is the most well-attended show (and the show that gets videotaped).
Now for the hard part: waiting over three months for the show. After several weeks of rehearsing and bonding with the other partners, the show mercifully arrived. Everyone danced so wonderfully and it was a joy to perform with all the many talented dancers at the studio — especially Carlos’ daughter Carmen (then 9 years old) who also takes lessons at Tude’s. Finally, the Saturday night show drew to a close and, after the bows, Tude went through her thank-yous. She carefully “neglected” to mention the guys and, just when things were about to wrap up, the guys all shouted “What about us?!?!” Tude called the men to the front where they gave her a group hug and Carlos magically emerged holding the microphone.
After thanking the dance instructors and the special ladies who brought the men to the studio, Carlos called his own special ladies, Barbara and Carmen, to the front of the stage. Carlos then choked back tears as he explained to Barbara how important she is to Carmen and to him. After nearly losing it (and regaining composure thanks to the encouragement of groomsman Art Pineda), Carlos got down on one knee, pulled out the ring, and said the words he’d been dying to say for over half a year: “Barbara Marie Dieckman, will you marry me?”
To Carlos’ great relief and joy, she said, “Yes!”
Barbara’s engagement ring is a custom-made half-platinum, half-18 kt white gold ring. The center stone, a 1.08-ct round-cut diamond is from Barbara’s mother’s engagement ring, which Barbara’s father graciously offered to Carlos before the proposal. Barbara’s mother passed away 2 years prior to their engagement. Her father was pleased to pass on this precious family treasure to a man he felt worthy of marrying his only daughter.
The center stone is set in 4 prong basket setting with the prongs offset at a 45 degree angle. The basket is surrounded by a crown of pave-set diamonds. The top of the ring is 18-kt white gold and on each side of the center stone is a vertical channel-set baguette diamond followed by 5 prong set round diamonds. The side of the ring incorporates carved antique scroll work. The bottom half of the ring is .990 platinum. Carlos worked with Giovanna’s Fine Jewelry in Mountain View, California to incorporate two existing designs plus Barbara’s own personal tastes into one unique ring that incorporates modern design with a hint of vintage flare.
Photos by Choco Studio