Friday, December 30, 2016

Wedding: Time to Party!!

A lonnng time ago I promised that I'd finish sharing wedding pictures before the end of the year and here I am squeezing in one last wedding post just under the wire. But this is possibly the best one yet, because this is the one where we get to celebrate being married! And this is the one where all our favorite people make an appearance. I just love all the memories these photos bring back. 

The kids were by far the biggest party animals of the night and seeing them all have such a great time was one of my very most favorite parts of the reception. My cousins daughter wanted to dance every time she saw me and kept insisting that I was a princess. Ez got mad whenever we left the dance floor and insisted he wanted to dance. And several of my friends children that had never met before became bffs and were breakdancing at one point. Surprisingly Declan, my tiny dancer, was not that into dancing. I think he was just wore out, and tired, and feeling neglected by mom and dad since he'd spent the night with the grandparents. He still got out there and rocked out a bit though, cause he's my little trooper. 

The whole wedding was a bit of blur for Joe and I, and I would've loved to have hours of one on one time with each and every one of the guests, but seeing these photos put my heart at ease that everyone was having a blast the whole night long which is everything we'd hoped for. The DJ came over and chatted with us for a bit and he said he can always tell by the music list whether guests will be dancing or not and as soon as he saw our list he knew it was going to be a fun dance party. Joe gets all the credit for that one. 

Did I already mention that we had a photo booth at our wedding? Best. investment. EVER! Seriously, this was definitely the star attraction for the guests. Everyone commented on how fun it was. And the scrapbook we got at the end with all of our friends and families' goofy photos is one of my favorite souvenirs. 

It's funny how much time I spent picking out color schemes and center pieces and decorations, yet when it came down to the big day I didn't notice any of that. Really, if it weren't for the pictures I don't think I'd have a clue what the tables looked like or what kind of flowers we had. What I noticed were all the people who'd chosen to spend their time celebrating with us. That really was the most special part. I know I've said it before but it really feels like a once in a lifetime event to have that specific group of people all in the same spot and I'll cherish those memories forever.

Speaking of details I didn't notice...all the delicious food we had was pretty much wasted on me. Joe and I took a bit of alone time between the ceremony and reception and our coordinator brought us a plate of apps and some wine, which was probably the only time we got to savor food the whole day. I SWORE I would not be the bride that didn't eat at her own wedding....annnd then I was. Visiting with guests and taking photos took priority and I wouldn't change it for a few extra bites of salmon. Thank goodness we had a small wedding. Not sure how it works with over a hundred people, or hundreds. I'm definitely glad we went the small intimate route and got to visit with everyone, even if only for a short amount of time.

I just love this picture of my cousin with her stash of chocolate and Coors light and that up to no good smile:

When it came time to toss my bouquet I asked the photographer for any tips before I went for it. Her advice? Smile! This is what I did instead:

The most serious bouquet throwing game face ever. I guess you could call it creative differences...
There was actually a decent amount of single ladies at the wedding which resulted in quite a scuffle, but in the end my cousin won out. Looking forward to your wedding, Vanessa! 

When it came time to cut the cake I was very emphatic that Joe and I would NOT be smashing cake. Lots of repeating these instructions to Joe for weeks beforehand, and thankfully he listened. We were actually really awkward with the whole cake cutting thing. We just fed each other a bite and then looked around like " what?" Speaking of cake, that's the one detail I cared the most about. I was really determined to eat my cake. I even tried carrying it around with me, shoving bites in my mouth while talking to guests. Super classy, I know. But how many wedding cakes do you get in a lifetime? In the end my attempt was futile and my half eaten piece wound up who knows where. Sad face. At least I have the pictures to remind me how pretty it was.

After the cake we partied until about midnight. Our DJ talked us into letting him lead a line dance and that wound up being so much fun I kinda wished we'd been doing it all throughout the night. If you scroll down several pictures you can see my mom and brother leading the pack right up front. In fact, I think I saw nearly every single guest on the dance floor at some point during the night which made us so happy. The whole day was even more perfect than we could've dreamed. 

Someone partied himself out. And Uncle Brett, true to his word, took on the task of watching Ez and Declan like a champ, even if it meant carrying this sack of potatoes baby around for the last hour. That's a good uncle right there.

And of course, I have to give extra thanks to these two, who made the whole day possible. We love you!

Then just like that the whole day and months and months of preparation was over. When Joe and I finally got back to our hotel we changed right into comfy clothes and hit up the Taco Bell drive through. The perfect end to the perfect day.

Thanks for bearing with me through at least half a dozen lengthy wedding related posts. You can check them all out here.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Wishing You a Merry Christmas - 2016

Hoping you all had the merriest, family-filled holiday weekend! 

Just like that Christmas is over, and I hope I say this for the next decade, but it really was the best Christmas ever. It passed by in a flurry of excitement, sprinkles, hugs, joyous screams, "open this??", huge cheesy smiles, assembly directions that required a physics degree, and so many new and cherished family memories. 

We drove approximately three hundred miles in a three day period, existed on not much more than cookies and chocolate, were too excited for sleep, and wound up with so many toys that it looks like we hijacked Santa's sleigh. Despite all that, or maybe because of it, Ez and Declan were rock stars and loved almost every second of it. There may have been a few tears, but that comes with the territory. Especially when there's only one scooter and two boys ready to throw punches over said scooter. That little mishap aside, I wouldn't change a thing about our holiday, and I don't think Ez or Declan would either. 

Only 362 days till we get to do it all over again!