You may have heard some creative marriage proposals, but here's one you'll really dig.

Michael Autry, owner of North Carolina grading company MSD (stands for “moving some dirt”) Inc., was working on a site off U.S. 401 in Hoke County one day in October, when romantic inspiration hit him. It took two tries and more than two hours to spell out “MARRY ME” in 40-foot-tall letters dug in the dirt with his bulldozer.

That night, he lured girlfriend Melissa Chadwell to the site by telling his beloved he needed to stop by before they met friends for dinner, to retrieve a forgotten GPS device. After parking alongside his dozer, Autry got out of the car, walked around to the passenger side, opened the door, pulled out a tiny box, and asked, “Will you?” then pointed toward his handiwork.

While the message has since been covered over, the effect was permanent: She said yes, and a January wedding date's been set in stone.