Emily and Michael

Image 1 of Emily and Michael

How We Met

Michael and I went to kindergarten together! We grew up in a small town on Long Island, with a graduating class of only about 100 people. This being said, our two friend groups overlapped. Throughout high school Michael and I were usually dating different people, but still hung out as friends. It was not until during college when we were home on a break one year that we started to talk as more than friends. I can still vividly remember telling my best friend Danielle that I though Michael was the most attractive guy I had ever seen and felt giddy that we were talking. After break was over though, we went back to our lives at school, and would only resume talking over the summer months. Fast forward to after college when we both moved back to our home towns AND both became teachers. We starting hanging out in October 2013 and were inseparable ever since.

Image 2 of Emily and Michael

Image 3 of Emily and Michael

At first it was funny for our groups of friends and families to see us dating since we had been friends for so long. But as the years went on, it was clear that we clicked together and the pairing made sense. It is still so funny to look at pictures of all of us growing up and thinking: “who knew these two kids would fall madly in love?!” Michael and I have many shared interests. We both love cooking, trying new restaurants, watching Game of Thrones, have a passion for teaching and coaching, and have a love for traveling and being outdoors. We have always tried to plan weekend getaways and love trying new things. Together we have done trail biking, hiking in upstate New York, white water rafting, kayaking, sail boating, and much more. Last year we travelled with my family to Alaska and this year we are looking forward to a trip to Utah and Arizona to explore the national parks. I know our lives will be filled with passion and adventure as our years have been so far together. Because of this, the surprise proposal Michael planned for me fit perfectly with our sense of adventure.

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how they asked

Through the years, we have become quite adventurous as a couple, so when we had the opportunity to attend a wedding in Portugal we knew we had to go. Michael’s family is Portuguese, so we planned a 10 trip that would start in Algarve, the south of Portugal, and end in the north of Portugal with his family to attend the wedding. On Friday when we flew to Faro, Portugal, our luggage did not get transferred over from Madrid because of a short layover time. Little did I know, Michael was planning a surprise proposal for Saturday. Michael had planned a private boat tour of the famous Benagil caves, and, knowing me, Michael knew that I would want to be wearing the new bathing suits that I purchased for this trip. Thinking on his feet, and speaking fluent Portuguese, he was able to contact the boat company and ask them to move the proposal plan to Sunday. On Saturday night we finally got our luggage, and our vacation was off to an unbelievable start.

Image 5 of Emily and Michael

We were relieved to have all of our belongings, and I was thrilled to have my new bathing suits for the next day. (Side note: Michael had the ring in his carry on bag or else that would have been a VERY stressful night!!) Our families, however, both thought that the proposal was going to be on Saturday, so they were anxious back home in New York when they had not heard from me all day. The morning of the boat tour Michael told me that we would be the only two on the boat. I thought this was strange, but just went with the plan, enjoying every minute of being together in a new country. The cave tour was awesome and exhilarating! The boat was able to maneuver into very small spaces and we got to see all different caves in the area. Finally, we came to the most famous cave in the region.

Image 6 of Emily and Michael

Michael had planned the tour so that it would be low tide and we would be able to get off of the boat and look around the cave. He also planned it so that the boat driver would come with us and take our picture to capture the proposal. Unfortunately, the water was so choppy that day that the driver said to Michael (in Portuguese) that he would not be able to stay to take pictures! Luckily, to Michael’s surprise, he zipped back to the beach and dropped off a different crew member to stay with us. The crew member was amazing and Michael was so relieved that his plan was falling into place. The crew member took our picture in all different places, until the big moment! In between pictures, Michael got down on his knee and ask me to marry him. I was crying and in shock! I did not even remember to look at the ring until after! Of course, I said yes to the love of my life.

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Image 12 of Emily and Michael

Special Thanks

Taruga Tours
 | Planning
Taruga Tours
 | Photographer