It's a good rule of thumb; if a wedding proposal is public, it's probably harder to say no.
Jeff Eastwood applied that axiom on an admirable scale this Christmas.
In the midst of car ads and AP stories in this year's Christmas edition of the Coeur d'Alene Press, there sat an advertisement that was hard to miss.
Over a snowy backdrop, bright red font declared, "Will You Marry Me Amy Scott?"
The question framed a heart-shaped photo of Eastwood cuddled up with his gal.
Eastwood just wanted a special way to pop the question, he said. What better way than using the local newspaper, which he works across the street from at Seasons of Coeur d'Alene?
And what better day than one when family and friends were happily congregated at the couple's Hayden home?
"I just thought it would be really special," Eastwood said. "This was the first year we were hosting Christmas at our house, doing ham and turkey, and I thought it would be nice to make her feel even more special."
For those who saw the ad and wondered, it worked.
On Christmas morning, Scott's mother persuaded her daughter to abandon the egg nog for a minute and take a look at the swell ad she just spied.
Scott glanced at the page, and promptly burst into tears.
"I just couldn't stop crying," said Scott. "I was in shock and just really, really happy. I've been wanting a proposal for the past year and a half, but I didn't know when it was coming or definitely how."
When she looked away from the ad, Eastwood was on his knees, holding up a ring.
He waited as she kept crying, he said. And then he waited some more.
"I was on my knee for a good five minutes," Eastwood said with a chuckle of how the tears kept coming. "She was like, 'Oh, my makeup,' and her family finally said, 'Well, what's the answer?' She ran toward me, wrapped her arms around me and said, 'yes, yes, yes.'"
That certainly made the holidays even brighter, he said.
"I was 99.9 percent positive she would say yes," he said. "It's definitely a good feeling."
The question wasn't hard to answer, said Scott, who has been dating Eastwood about three years.
The pair enjoys the same movies and music and hobbies like dirt biking. They live together with Eastwood's son Zack, 8, and Anthony, 2, who the couple had together.
"He's very outgoing. Just loving and compassionate," Scott said of her fiance. "He always makes a situation totally positive."
She called Eastwood a devoted father, she said, adding that their free time is often spent playing games with the boys.
"I think our future is going to be wonderful," she said.
Eastwood described Scott as passionate and big hearted, especially with her family.
And fortunately for both, she likes surprises.
"Just the other day, I showed up at her work and made a real nice dinner," he said of visiting Scott at her assisted living job. "I'm that kind of guy. I like to do things on the random, just because it's Wednesday and to show her I care."
The couple is still deliberating over the wedding date and location. There are a slew of details to address, like whether to fly in his family from California or fly her people there from North Idaho.
Regardless of the details, one thing is certain. That they will be spending every Christmas together from now on.
"We've been together three years and have our child together," Eastwood said. "It was time."