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Lauren & Michael

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Lauren Dougherty, 25, and Michael Atkins, 34, truly have much in common; they are both elementary school teachers who bonded over discussions about their profession and their experiences!

“We met at work,” Lauren laughs. “Mike taught second grade and it was my first year teaching kindergarten. Our classrooms were paired up as buddy classrooms. Whenever my kids got in trouble I would send them to Mike and vice versa. We definitely shared some stories, talking about our students and usually laughing over the things they said or did.”

Lauren was both surprised and touched by Mike’s surprise proposal on July 26, 2014. “We were at a friend’s wedding in Vail and were driving home the day after when he suddenly pulled back into Vail, saying that he wanted to stop for lunch before getting on the highway. He was definitely acting a little fidgety and weird; after lunch he asked me to go sit on a bench–very out of the ordinary–and then he got down on one knee and proposed. It was amazing and unexpected. After the proposal he told me that he had made reservations for us to stay that night at The Sebastian.

“When I walked into the hotel room there was our favorite champagne on ice and lying on the bed were two outfits. He had gone to Express and bought me two dresses with all the accessories for me to choose between, since he knew I would need something to wear for the dinner he had planned for the evening. He later told me a hilarious story about his shopping trip. I was so amazed by the fact that he had thought of every little detail. He definitely gave me a day that I will never forget!”

Lauren and Mike have set their wedding date for June 20, 2015, at breathtaking Baldoria on the Water in Lakewood, Colorado. “We have already made the big decisions–the dress, the venue and photographer. Now we are taking it slow but it is exciting to check things off the list. Our engagement photos were a blast; the guest list is our next big task and I am definitely bringing out the wine for that!

“I’m very excited because my uncle has agreed to officiate our wedding. We feel that it will make the experience very special and personal with our close relationship with him, and we’re looking forward to having our family members and friends to celebrate this occasion with us.”