Credit: Marlene Karas/PHOTOlink

Jason Mesnick and Molly Malaney had been talking about getting hitched as far back as July.

But when he placed a diamond and platinum ring in a glass of champagne and passed it to her Oct. 20 during a trip to New Zealand, she was completely caught off guard.

"Molly was very surprised; she hadn't expected it to happen right then, even though we all knew it was a matter of time," her father Mike tells local paper, The Grand Rapids Press. "She was real excited. It was a short conversation, and they hadn't made any plans yet. We just found out ourselves at 10:30 [Tuesday night], so this is all breaking very rapidly."

Before the big moment, Mesnick, 33, got approval from her parents.

"Jason called us first," Mike says. "He sent Molly out to get her nails done, and he wanted to run it by us before he asked her."

Mesnick made headlines for dumping Melissa Rycroft on national television, saying that his heart belonged to Molly, his runner-up.

Despite Mesnick's controversial move, Molly's dad says, "We've already determined that he’s a good guy."

He says that Molly, a 25-year-old fashion buyer, moved to Seattle - where Mesnick lives with his son, Tyler - "about a month ago."

new Us Weekly of the newly engaged couple, who have yet to set a date.