Stepfather creates children's book to propose to his childhood pen pal

When American Rick Skalski decided it was time to propose to his childhood pen pal he knew he had to include one other very special person in the proposal – his stepson Evan – and the idea for a superhero proposal storybook was born.

Rick and Chloe met face-to-face in 2011 after twelve years spent communicating through letters as children. Not only did he score the girl of his dreams that day, he also inherited a son in her toddler Evan, who he calls, ‘My whole world’.

He enlisted the help of illustrator Yoni Limor to create a children’s book that would not only be an engagement keepsake for Chloe but also something to explain to his stepson – who is too young to understand that Rick isn’t his biological father – how his family came to be.

Rick reading the proposal book to his stepson Evan and soon-to-be fiance Chloe. Source:
Rick reading the proposal book to his stepson Evan and soon-to-be fiance Chloe. Source: 

In a letter to Yoni he explains why he decided to propose in such a way.   

‘I always knew how I wanted to propose to Chloe, with a children’s book addressed to our son, Evan. I only had an idea, no words written or concepts drawn,’ writes Rick.

‘You see, Evan’s not my biological son, but he’s my whole world and I wanted to propose in a way that we could have a memento for Evan to cherish for years to come.’

After sending a few pictures of his family and a rough draft of the story, Rick says Yoni brought his vision to life in a book titled, My Super Family.

‘The idea was that of a little boy who thinks his parents are superheroes because of the way they act towards each other, not because they wear costumes or fly around protecting humanity. I wanted Evan to see that his family was special but also normal,’ he writes.

'Most dads would agree, when you have a child there’s nothing more precious than the element of surprise. The look on my son’s face when you tell him that he is getting a surprise is priceless, so I knew there was no better way to propose than to surprise Evan and Chloe with this book.’


It was also the personal aspects added by the illustrator that Rick says added to his stepson’s surprise.

‘When we turned one of the pages and Evan saw himself holding Buzz Lightyear, his favourite character, he lit up with joy.’

But how did the book end?

The diamond ring.   Source:
The diamond ring. Source: 

‘Evan, I was a kid when I met your mother. Every day she has been in my life she’s made it a little bit sweeter. We used to talk about the future but I just always considered it farfetched. Fast forward to today and I have not only your mother in my life, but you. You and your mommy are my pride and joy. There’s nothing more I want in life than for us to be a family. Will you please give me your hand in marrying mommy?’

After the last page was turned Rick pulled out the diamond ring and judging by the photos he sent through to Yoni, Chloe accepted wholeheartedly.

You can read the rest of the beautifully illustrated book in our photo gallery.