Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Longest Post EVER - Feel free to break into parts! 274.365

Hello to all my lovely readers! It's Thursday night, 7:30 ish. I still have a few things needing to get done before I finally relax for the night, but I wanted to take this time while things are quiet to give you all a bit of an update. My dear friend asked for some updates on things and I thought I'd give you some highlights of things from the wedding through the past few weeks. I don't think I've shared wedding pictures, but I think I will post a few and a few from our honeymoon and then some updates. Maybe eventually I'll get a more in-depth post on the wedding. For now it's just an overall look on the happenings in our little and oh-so-lovely life! So I'll sit back in this quiet home, listening to some new music on Spotify, and write you a nice update (especially for you Jilly).

So, I'll start with the wedding festivities. A few from before the wedding and then a couple from our wedding day. :) I hope you enjoy!

Mono, my parents and I drove up to the northeast a few days before our big day to get some things in order and to be there in time for the fun festivities taking place on Friday night! On Friday morning, I giddily drove to the airport to pick up my best friend and Maid of Honor and head up to Maryland for the rehearsal and dinner that evening. Now let me tell you…. the rehearsal dinner was kept a bit of a secret from me. My amazing "second mom" (aka. mother in law) and sister-in-law (yaaaayyy! I have a sister and brother-in-law now!!!!) - - - Here's a picture of them to go along with my excitement!
Back to what I was saying. Mami and Erin planned an amazing evening, far beyond anything I thought we could have! Actually, I thought it was going to be held in the church hall… no way! It was held in the crisp fall air, underneath the sky filled with stars. Ah-maz-ing times 1 million. I thought I was in a dream! The weather was perfect. Mami had arranged for some heaters and an outdoor fire pit for a little warmth for the evening. Oh, it was lovely!

Kath and I brought our stuff up to our nice suite in the hotel (we needed the room for all 13 of us - myself and mom and 11 in my bridal party - to get ready) and relaxed a bit before we headed to the rehearsal at the Church.
The fact that I was getting married the very next day had yet to hit me, but I was very excited to practice for such a big day. The Church that we were going to be married in had just been renovated and I was really anticipating it's beauty. I couldn't wait to get there and see it. It was magnificent! Fresh paint, marble floors... gorgeousness!

There's nothing super special about this picture, but I just love looking at Kath (my MOH) and Lea (my cousin and one of my bridesmaids). They both look so happy! We were having fun. I love those two. 
This was fun! 
But the following day was even better!!!
Now on to our fabulous party!
Some of my favorite things from the night were the balloon lanterns light strung between trees, the light and warmth coming from the flickering fire, the yellow striped paper straws in the mason jars for our drinks, the Jones Cream Soda (yummmm), the Georgetown cupcakes (my favorite)...
My god-father!!
Our parents :)

Some of my favorite people!

Once the rehearsal came to an end (which I was sad to see... I wanted it to go on forever!) Kath and I headed back to our hotel, but we didn't get to bed until after 1am! Yikes! But we did get a special visit around midnight from Jilly when she arrived! I was so excited to see her. She came with her magic wand and all to help us with a little last minute fix to Kath's dress! Let me tell you, that girl can fix anything! :)

Even though we didn't get to sleep until after 1, we had to wake up at 5 to begin the process of hair and makeup for all of the ladies, plus a few extras...

Yawnnnn.... Thank goodness for the million pots of coffee we ordered!

I really enjoyed having my girls with me getting ready that morning. Having them all in the room was so special. I wish I could have spent a little more time chatting with each of them, soaking up those moments together, but you know how things get on the morning of a wedding!
Two girls from a local salon came to do our hair...
And Jillian did a fabulous job on all of our makeup. If you need your makeup done, Jilly is the person to go to! I had gone to get my makeup done - trials - and everyone was a disaster. I knew I wanted her to do my makeup, but I wanted to test looks out before the big day. She lives in NY and I live in AL so I couldn't have a trial with her so I had to work with what I could. Well, I called her in a panic after the 3rd or 4th person tried their own spin on the look I wanted on me. Ugh! I was so frantic, but each and every time I called her, Jillian told me, "Mare, I've got you covered. Nothing to worry about." I would always become instantly calm when I heard her say that. I knew she'd have me covered, but I still wanted to know what I'd look like. I should have known to just let it go and know that no matter what "look" Jillian did for me, I'd look fabulous. And she did a darn good job!
I can't remember exactly what time there was a knock at my door the morning of my wedding, but I ran to see who it was and it was my Aunt Mare (one of them - I have two Aunt Mares)... dressed in yellow... just like my mom. I have a feeling this is the sort of thing that happens after being friends for over 30 years. They haven't seen each other in months, yet they are wearing the same color shirts! I love it. Aunt Mare is Jilly's mom, by the way!
Boy, 5:00 was long gone and when I looked at the time, it was time to pile into the limos (we needed two to fit all of us girls!!!) and head to Church for the big moment!!! 
Gosh, I was so stinkin' excited!! I can't even begin to explain! I remember sitting in that limo, just being filled with anticipation and excitement, and I was incredibly calm. Not an ounce of nerves!
My man waiting for me!! I couldn't see him for a while because people were peeking out of their pews to watch me walk down the aisle, but when I finally saw him, I was one incredibly happy girl (if it was possible to be any happier than I already was!)
While I was waiting behind the doors in the back of the church, I was peeking out of the windows to see people and wave at them. I was so happy! A few people that could see me talked to me after and said, "Mare, you were the happiest and most excited bride we've ever seen before a wedding!" I was so happy to see everyone filling the church! 

My Aunt Liz (you can see her on the very right of the bottom picture here) just kept saying to me, "Ooch (that's what she calls me), you're getting married!!" So when I was passing her she was squealing, "Ooch, you're getting married... now!" She really made me smile and chuckle! I'll always remember that little moment with her.
Two priests that are close family friends were there at our wedding. There were a few others, but these two played prominent roles in the day. Fr. Isaac (on the left) said the nuptial Mass and Fr. Anthony (on the right) did the vows.
The Church is so beautiful. It's breathtaking really!
Our groomsmen (standing), Mono and I (sitting) and our bridesmaids (kneeling)!! - All different parts of the Mas.

Consecrating our marriage to the Blessed Mother.

After a few pictures in Church with the wedding party and family, we were quickly off to the reception!
With the pouring rain seeming to just hold off by a thread, we all went outside in the drizzling rain (doing a number to my hair) and very chilly day to take pictures. We were so cold (and getting wet) that we took turns going in to warm up! When the guys were being photographed, the girls went inside and vise versa. :) But then when Mono and I were just being photographed, we had to guts it out! 

Six handsome groomsmen, one maid of honor (one matron of honor not there in person, but in spirit - I'll get to that later), five bridesmaids, three junior bridesmaids and two flower girls... oh and of course a bride and groom!
 You're going to see some absolutely amazing pictures from my photographer/friend soon, but for now, here's a sneak peak at three of the pictures my Dad snapped of us...
The rest are going to be a little out of order, but you can still enjoy them!

Jilly and my Dad (Dad's her god-father).
 Our first dance.
I'll let you in on a little secret...
We did not practice our first dance until we were waiting in the line to be introduced. Thank God for a big wedding party in front of us!
Let me tell you, we were good! :) We swayed back and forth, no fancy steps (that's not us) and Mono even twirled me around with perfection! 
Look how happy he was! And he doesn't even like to dance!
 Stealing away a moment with my sweetest friend (and MOH).
 A moment I will always cherish... Instead of the normal bouquet toss, I wanted to present the bouquet to my godmother (my second Aunt Mare). I wrote her a note, played a special song and gave her the biggest hug. I love her so much and I am so glad we share the same name. :)
 Rockin' on the dance floor; milkshakes in hand!
 Sweetness galore! We had a milkshake bar (especially for Mono), cupcakes and little tartlettes, a candy buffet (not shown) and our cake! And there you can get a glimpse of our dining area of the reception.
 We had two speeches. Alex, Mono's brother and best man, gave an awesome speech. It was perfect and just right! A bit funny and a bit sentimental. It couldn't have been any better. Now onto a brief story about my matron of honor.

I knew from the day I was engaged that I wanted to ask Katie to be my matron of honor at our wedding. And all was set that she would be there, until the amazing news came! Katie called me one day to tell me that she was pregnant! My goodness was I excited! Katie and I have been friends since the day I was born and now she was having a baby! Well, baby Jay Jay was going to arrive at the end of October so it was cutting things close, but Katie was still going to make it. To make the story move along, Katie had to have a c-section scheduled for two days after my wedding and she had to make a call telling me she wasn't able to make it. It was hard for both of us, but we knew that the excitement and joy of her precious son's arrival would outweigh the sorrow of her not being at my wedding. Even though Katie wasn't there in person to give her speech, she sent it typed up, all three pages, with a dear friend of ours to read to me. Up until the moment Marjy started reading I was okay, not crying at all. Not a single tear! Well, I think it was then and there that it hit me that my Katie was not there on my wedding day. And Niagra Falls then moved to Maryland. So many emotions hit me. I was overjoyed at what she was saying in her speech, so sad that she wasn't there (physically), sad also for a few things she mentioned - like my moves further away from her - and some real good laughs. Jillian recorded the entire thing on her phone and sent it right over to Katie back home. I know she was really there with me every step of the way in spirit. I will always say I had 12 girls in my bridal party... matron of honor and all!
 Our dances with our parents!
 Okay, so that's a peek into our special day. It was even more memorable than either of us could have imagined and everyone that had come to the wedding said they had a fabulous time... that is what I was hoping for. I wanted it to be special and memorable for everyone who shared our day.

So there you have it! Our wedding updated on the blog!

And, if you are willing to eventually read more of my blog, there is a separate post up with honeymoon updates... just pictures and some fun memories.
I will have to post about married life in another post. I think this may have crossed the line of how long blog posts are allowed to be!

My parents came for a visit and to help work in the house today, as well as one of Mono's good friends who had off for the day. He hung out with us at the house while Mono was at work (they visited together for lunch) and then all five of us went to one of our new favorite restaurants, Sweet Bones. We got a bit done today which was nice and I have a really full day ahead of me tomorrow getting lots of random things done!

Good night all!