The Escape of the Ring from the Puzzle Box [Engagement Announcement]

There were less than three minutes left in Mission Escape Game’s Nemesis when we unlocked a cabinet that revealed a jewelry box labeled “For Lisa”.

1 - Box in Nemesis

I knew it couldn’t be a ring; David isn’t that predictable…

But there wasn’t any time to think about that box, or even open it. We had to restore power to the space station to stop it from crashing into Earth! And that’s exactly what we did.

The game ended. In my jewelry box I found a scroll and a key.

2 - Box in Nemesis - Open

3 - Step 1 ScrollLisa & David - Post Game

I pocketed my treasures throughout the room run down, the post game beer, and the F to the A to the bus, which was late, and then got stuck in tunnel traffic.

As we entered our apartment, I immediately noticed the antique, locked box on the counter. A puzzle box!

4 - Puzzle Box

David reports that I responded to the presence of this puzzle box with, “Oh gosh! I have to get my key.”

5 - Puzzle Box Lock

My key fit the lock.

6 - Puzzle Box Lock - Open

I was certain the puzzle box held a ring… Now I just had to figure out how to open it.

David had left many clues in the box to guide me.

7 - Name Puzzle
Note the dials, they represent letters transformed from the cell phone, and translated into clock positions.

8 - Step 2 Scroll

I had to spin the dials to spell my name on clock faces and release the peg. I am David’s Ice Queen (I’m usually unreasonably cold [physically cold, not emotionally]).

9 - Name Puzzle - Solved

It released, and the whole panel lifted out of the box and revealed… Another puzzle.

10 - Final Puzzle

I had to spin the dials to the number “99” which repeated itself in the scroll and the lock.

11 - Step 3 Scroll

It was explicitly designed to occupy both my hands, requiring me to push in two pegs on opposite side of the box.

12 - Pushing Buttons

David then to removed the cover piece and revealed…

13 - Lifting Cover

… the ring!

14 - Ring Revealed

I said yes.

Thank you to David’s co-conspirators

  • Kelly Snache for designing and building the puzzle box; his work is incredible.
  • The folks from for helping David find Kelly.
  • Jose Valenzuela for designing the scrolls and receiving, storing, and setting up the puzzle box in our apartment.
  • My future mother-in-law Joan Spira for providing her old phone.
  • My future father-in-law Marc Spira for making the scroll dowels.
  • Jessica Gebauer of Jessica Allison Jewelry for designing and creating the beautiful ring.
  • Lindsay Froelich for bringing the jewelry box to Mission Escape Games.
  • Derek, Dave, Melissa, and the rest of the Mission Escape Games team for hiding the first clue in the penultimate puzzle of Nemesis.
  • Thursday night’s team for a game well played. It would have been really awkward if we didn’t escape.


We look forward to a lifetime of puzzles to solve together.

Update April 5, 2022: If you’re interested in pro tips for designing a personalized adventure like this one, check out our Reality Escape Pod interview with Chris Waters of Constructed Adventures. And to hear how Chris grades David on this proposal, join our Patreon community for access to the bonus episode.


  1. Beautiful blog post, Lisa! Well-played David! Congratulations to you both!

  2. Congratulations! Beside all the excitement of your big step forward together, what an incredibly creative, memorable way to take it!

    Very happy for you both and looking forward to celebrating Friday.

    Again, congratulations for this very happy news.

    All my best,


    Bradley J. Albright, Managing Partner Escape Entertainment

    39 West 32nd Street, 4th Floor New York, NY 10001 +1 646 964 5783

  3. What a wonderful story……..David you are a gifted romantic soul and Lisa you deserve such a smart, caring person. Congratulations to both of you!

  4. Love the story and the pictures…you both look very happy… obviously had the most important key from the very beginning …the key to each other’s heart! Xo All the best!!

  5. Hi David and Lisa,

    Love your efforts at championing the art of the escape room, and looking forward to your visit to the Austin area.

    That box containing Lisa’s ring is crazy creative…I’m definitely going to check the maker’s other work.

    Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving from Santa’s Office…

    David Steele
    Escape Room Leander

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