Getting ready for the wedding was a long ordeal. Four bridesmaids and two moms, hair and make-up for all, including myself. Our day began about 9a.m. I didn't have anything planned for that morning. I was too tired to entertain and I think everyone else was also. I think having a full day before where you did all the really fun things really does sap the energy from you the day of the wedding. But we soldiered on and managed to finish with smiles on our faces.
Our make-up artist was Michele Hundley. She did an amazing job with all of us, making us all unique to ourselves and yet cohesive as well. The bridesmaids all wore the same color dresses, but they were able to pick out the one's they liked best. I can't recommend her enough. She's both professional and talented. Her make-up lasted throughout the whole day and through a couple of tears. She was able to put make-up on my eyes that didn't make me look like Mimi from that Drew Carey show. And I didn't feel like I was wearing a humongous layer of junk on my face. She's fabulous and I would sugest her as your make-up artist any day.
My hairstylist was a woman I found surfing the web. My usual hair stylist up and quit the salon 2 weeks before my wedding. I couldn't get in touch with her to see what was going on, so I hired someone else. The hair we had wasn't my dream hair. I would have prefered something else, but I don't think she could manage it. If you look through her portfolio, all her hairstyles are basically one kind with variations. Her work is decent, but if you want anything out of a magazine, she shouldn't be your first choice. She also didn't have a wrap to put around you when she did your hair, which meant that I had hairspray all along my neck and back. I had Katie help me wipe that all off before I put on my wedding dress. She also helped herself to some sandwiches without us offering any to her. She had told Chris and myself that she didn't want a break, she just wanted to work right through lunch and be done. But instead, she helped herself to the food we had and took a break anyway. Since I'm not giving her a glowing review, I'm not sure I should name her either. I think the hair came out decently well, but it's nothing that I'd had dreamed of when I originally came to her. I settled, but you sort of have to when you have less than 2 weeks to find a hair stylist who isn't booked.
Photography was by Sterling Fine Art Photography. He was also the one that took our photos for our engagement. He was pleasant and professional, and made sure that we all smiled even though we were all tired. Everyone liked him quite a bit and I think he took some fabulous photos of us. Our officiant was from Vows Are Forever, which is a family run organization. I liked them because they had someone help with the actual ceremony, telling everyone when to get in line, when to go, etc. It was a great relief to have her there knowing that nobody would be confused as to what they were doing or supposed to do. Flowers, corsages, boutiniere's were made by DSR Designs. She was budget conscious and the flowers looked great. I got orchids for everyone. My bouquet had roses, orchids, freesias and some other things. She also provides a throwing bouquet, which we left at Lou Gardens. But since we only had all of three single women, I didn't think there was a point in throwing them. Nobody wanted to catch them anyway, so we didn't even bother. We hired a harpist, but she turned out to be a harpy, so I won't be mentioning her either. Limo was by Mears Transportation and we hired it on as a charter, which was somehow cheaper than I thought it would be. But hey, I'm not complaining!
After getting ready at the Royal Pacific Resort, we took some photos before getting in the limo to Leu Gardens. By this point, I was so tired, I wanted to take a nap, but of course, I couldn't. I'd mess up my hair and make-up!
We were supposed to have the wedding at the Rose Garden, but it started raining and everyone was getting soaked. So the decision was made to have it indoors. The staff sent a big golf cart for all of us to get back to the main house for the ceremony.
Ryan was especially helpful here because he called the boys (who were in the room next door waiting as well), and coordinated with them to figure out what was going on. This is the one and only photo of the Rose Garden that we have. I didn't mind going inside. It was air conditioned! So we traded heat and beauty for comfort and dryness. I thought it was still a beautiful hallway.
I kept from crying up until I started walking down the aisle and then my face scrunched up horribly as I tried to not cry, but I just gave up. Tears came down for a small portion of the ceremony, but I got it all under control before it became these sorry sobs. Lots of people cried after that.
Jenn took care of the Harpy, which I didn't hear about until much later. I have to say that my bridesmaids were totally awesome during this whole time. They helped me with everything that day so I didn't have anything to worry about. I don't know how many other people can say the same thing. I love them all dearly.
Dinner was at Ruth's Chris and I tell you, I can't remember much of that at all. We had cocktails in the bar where we had sangria, fruit, crackers and cheese platter as well as a salmon platter. We were afraid that people wouldn't eat it all up, but that's never the case. People eat everything at weddings. Then we went to the reception room where we started dinner. Salad, filet mignon/tuna stack/chicken (some vegetarians traded theirs for a portabello mushroom), and cake for dessert, which we got at Louie & Maria's (an italian restaurant near our house). Everyone had a slice of chocolate canole cake and a blueberry,raspberry cake. Those were all eaten up as well.
I don't particularly remember much of the dinner other than that I sat down, ate the salad, got up, talked to people, sat down, ate the filet, got up, talked to people, sat down, toast, cake, eat cake, talk some more. I think it went spectacularly smoothly if I say so myself. Ryan, my Man-Of-Honor, gave my toast and made me cry, made Chris' mom cry too. By 9:30, the dinner was pretty much over. Only a few stragglers remained. My family packed up the gifts into their car and brought them to our room while we started on our way home. And by 11:00, we were back in our room. It was a whirlwind day, and a happy one. Thanks for all of you who attended and shared the special day with us.