Last Friday was a fairytale. I’m still pinching myself at the realization that I’m a fiancé and will be a wife to my own Prince Charming soon. When Cole and I began talking about getting married, the only thing I requested was that he surprise me, because in the seven years that I’ve known him, he has never done such a thing. And boy, did he deliver…
Read on to hear the story of our engagement! And a huge thank you to the amazing Rachael Luellen from Zaro Photography for capturing these gorgeous shots.
The day started as any normal one would – Cole and I had spent the previous day lounging around and recovering from New Year’s Eve, so he mentioned us going on a date the next day. I woke up on Friday to receive a group text from my best friend Clara saying that our other bestie Michelle (who we refer to as Mimi) was receiving an award from her company and her boyfriend, Preston, wanted to surprise her by having us all show up. Well, I was hesitant to ask Cole because I knew he wanted to have a date night. It was only when my best friend Emmily responded to the group text asking if the guys could come that I decided to go ahead and ask Cole. As expected, Cole responded by acting uninterested and annoyed at the last minute plans. After some convincing, however, he said he’d come along.
Since Clara offered to buy Mimi a card and Emmily said she’d bring flowers (you can see both in the photo above – we literally all signed it for Mimi!), I said I’d buy wine and appetizers for us to have at Cole’s place before we headed to the Gaylord for Mimi’s exciting work banquet (or so I thought). So we all met up and were on our way!
We were told to go to the Yellow Rose banquet room, so we followed the signs once we arrived at the Gaylord (this just so happens to be the place where Cole took me on our first date in August of 2008, but since my family had just been there the weekend before, I was not suspecting anything at all). I still had no idea what was happening as Cole led me to a sign across from our ballroom destination…
(PS – My shoes help giveaway the fact that I had NO idea my engagement would be happening! I only had the dress in my car by chance, and the red booties were the only heeled shoes I had for the banquet. I figured we wouldn’t be taking many photos…)
To be honest, once I saw the “L & C” initials at the setup, my heart began pounding out of my chest, my face went flush and I blacked out. Thankfully, Cole wrote down what he said on a card so I can always remember it.
With help from my sister, Cole managed to incorporate one of my favorite Disney movies into the proposal in the most romantic of ways. He had a violinist playing “Beauty and the Beast” and even had a vase covered rose inspired by the movie.
I was still in for another surprise – I hadn’t worn my contacts that night because they always itch my eyes, so I heard clapping when I said yes and turned around to find over 50 of our closest family and friends! My heart was bursting with joy!
My best friend Kristen even flew in all the way from Nashville to be there and two of my other besties, Olivia and Valerie drove in from Austin and Houston. Cole’s best friends from Austin and his cousins and grand parents from Archer City drove in as well. I couldn’t believe my eyes! Cole and I are truly blessed with some amazing friends and family and it meant the absolute world to us for them to share this special moment.
Cole and all of my friends and family who were involved could not have made this night more magical for me. It was literally my perfect version of a fairytale and to be able to share it with the people I love most is a blessing and a memory that I will cherish for a lifetime.
THANK YOU from the bottom of our hearts to everyone for making our start to happily ever after one of the best nights of our lives.
Below are more of the photos from the amazing night, which was followed by a beautiful engagement party at my future mother and father-in-law’s home and then a sleepover with our best friends that lasted until 5am! Stay tuned for more photos from the party!
Cannot wait to become Mrs. Lauren Vandiver Green. 🙂
PS – a HUGE thank you to my little sister for helping Cole make me feel like an absolute princess on this unforgettable night. I love you and cherish your friendship more than anything in this world and cannot wait for the year of memories to come!