July 05, 2010 12:00 PM

When the guy of your dreams proposes, “you want to stand on a mountain and scream to the world,” says Kellie Pickler. And that’s pretty much what the country singer did after her boyfriend of 2½ years, Kyle Jacobs, popped the question on a Florida beach June 15. “We were on our hotel balcony the next day,” she says, “and a man rode by on a bike. I screamed, ‘We’re getting married,’ and he crashed into the bushes!” The news got a big reaction from her pals and fellow brides-to-be Carrie Underwood and Miranda Lambert. Says Pickler, 24: “Carrie joked that we should have a triple wedding.”

The proposal, though, was for just the two of them. “I wanted to make it special,” says Jacobs, 37, a songwriter, who buried in the sand a wooden box he had carved. Inside was a seashell inscribed with the name of Pickler’s late grandmother, a letter from her dad (whose permission Jacobs had asked), a journal Jacobs wrote to her and a diamond ring. “He was on both knees bawling; I was crying,” says Pickler. “It was the most spiritual moment. We would’ve gotten married that night had there been a preacher walking by!”

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