Lori & Brian asked thier friend, photo enthusiast Raylene Strauber, to snap their engagement photos in Tucson, Arizona.

Lori & Brian asked thier friend, photo enthusiast Raylene Strauber, to snap their engagement photos in Tucson, Arizona.

It's not every day that one of your best friends meets the man of her dreams, falls in love, gets engaged and then allows you to help plan her wedding!

I'll let Lori tell the tale, as only she could!

"While studying with my nursing school classmates at Create Café, my eyes locked with the most handsome man I’d ever seen. Brian was sitting across the restaurant from me, eating lunch with his family. I rushed to the restroom to freshen my lipstick and let my hair out of a ponytail. When I returned to the table I sat directly in his line of sight and gave him my best “come hither” hair toss. He still teases me about that, but the engagement ring on my finger tells me the tried-and-true hair toss is still effective.

Lori & Brian met while she was studying at a restaurant that he happened to be dining at with his family.  They returned to the scene for some engagement photos.  

Lori & Brian met while she was studying at a restaurant that he happened to be dining at with his family.  They returned to the scene for some engagement photos.  

We kept stealing glances at one another, as Brian struggled to muster the courage to approach a table of six ladies to ask for my phone number. As my classmates began packing their books to leave, I remained at the table. My classmate asked, “Aren’t you leaving?” I replied, “I’m not leaving until that man comes over to talk to me.”

Brian walked out of the restaurant with his family. I turned to my classmate and said, “I was wrong. I guess he’s not interested” and began packing my things to leave. Meanwhile, in the parking lot, Brian told his father, “I’m going back inside Dad. There’s a girl I’m going to talk to.” His dad gave him a surprised, “Good luck!” as he walked back into the café. My classmate whispered to me, “It looks like you were right after all.” Standing in front of me was my future husband, and I’ll never forget what he said… “Hi; I’m Brian. I’m sorry to bother you, but if I left without asking for your number, I’d be kicking myself for the rest of my life.”

Lori would follow Brian anywhere.  Engagement photos by Raylene Strauber.  

Lori would follow Brian anywhere.  Engagement photos by Raylene Strauber.  

The rest, as they say, is history!

On the night of her nursing school graduation the two attended a celebratory “pinning” ceremony at a beautiful event center in the scenic outskirts of Tucson. After everyone left, Lori & Brian stayed behind to tour the grounds. As the sun was setting, he knelt down on one knee, promised to love her for the rest of their lives, and proposed.

The perfect ring for her hand!  Brian proposed with an emerald cut diamond surrounded bu round stones.

The perfect ring for her hand!  Brian proposed with an emerald cut diamond surrounded bu round stones.

The ring was a complete surprise!  Brian chose a a limited edition design from Fred Meyer’s Jewelry featuring an emerald cut center stone.  Enhancing the classic style is a halo of round diamonds set in white gold, with pave diamonds encircling the band.

Engagement Ring Bling - I love emerald cut diamonds!  

Engagement Ring Bling - I love emerald cut diamonds!  

To celebrate unique spirit of their romance photographer Raylene Strauber set the two against the gorgeous colors of Tucson, Arizona and among the books that brought them together.

A nod to the books that brought them together, and Lori's aversion to studying in libraries.  

A nod to the books that brought them together, and Lori's aversion to studying in libraries.  

Lori & Brian asked thier friend, photo enthusiast Raylene Strauber, to snap their engagement photos in Tucson, Arizona.

Lori & Brian asked thier friend, photo enthusiast Raylene Strauber, to snap their engagement photos in Tucson, Arizona.

Lori, a nurse, will marry Brian, a member  of the Coast Guard, in the fall of 2013.

Lori, a nurse, will marry Brian, a member  of the Coast Guard, in the fall of 2013.

As a friend, I could not be happier to see this darling girl marrying such an amazing man.  And as a destination wedding planner I could not be more excited about helping her plan what I know is going to be a fabulous desert wedding!

Lori & Brian - Tucson, Arizona. 

Lori & Brian - Tucson, Arizona. 

Lori ~ From the moment we met nearly 20 years ago you have been a bright light in my life, my partner in crime, my confident and one of the truest friends I have known!  I love you like family and it is my honor and privilege to help you make your wedding day amazing!

Brian ~ You aren't just easy on the eyes, but easy on the heart!  Thank you for making my sweet friend so happy and for letting me be a part of your day!

Always...

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Las Vegas Wedding Planner Andrea Eppolito is often published, with works featured by the likes of Style Me Pretty, Grace Ormonde Wedding Style, The NY Times, Junebug Weddings, and more. With an eye catching style that shares not only the story, but the soul, of a wedding, Andrea's clients praise her for being their wedding planner, event designer, advocate, and friend. Named the Best Wedding Planner in Las Vegas (2013), Wedding Professional of the Year (2011) and ranked as one of the top 50 wedding planners world-wide, Andrea works with celebrities, athletes, executives, and all people in love! Based in Las Vegas, and working as a destination wedding planner world wide, you can learn more at www.AndreaEppolitoEvents.com.