Well, the â€˜wedding of the century,â€™ as Iâ€™ve affectionately called it, is over. And it sure lived up to the hype.
It was absolutely wonderful to see my best friend, Lauren, marry such a great person. Lauren and Randyâ€™s Philadelphia wedding went off without a hitch, and many, many times, I heard the bride remark that absolutely everything was perfect. Perfect man, perfect ceremony, perfect party.
But before the party, comes the prep. The maid of honor had the foresight to ask for a delivery of sandwiches and fruit to the bridal suite so we had something to snack on as we got dressed.
The hummus + pita was great, but the veggie wraps â€“ with sundried tomato, cucumber, and cous cous â€“ were even better.
The champagne was flowinâ€™!
Our dresses were beautiful silvery-gray long gowns, with one shower of fabric flowers. Our hair was all a bit different, and everyone looked great.
One of the maids was responsible for cleaning the brideâ€™s ring. She did everyone else’s, too.
The bride and groom opted for pre-ceremony photographs, which I kind of liked because that meant that the bridal party got to enjoy the cocktail hour. We took pictures right in Center City, in a park called Rittenhouse Square. I bet the pics will look great â€“ very urban and cool. We even paid a trumpet player to come serenade the bride and groom for a few dancing pictures in the middle of the park!
And then, all the sudden â€“ it was time for the ceremony! The entire event was held at a restaurant called Davioâ€™s.
I was nervous heading down the aisle, but I had a nice groomsmen to hang onto. Thank goodness.
Then, it was Laurenâ€™s turn. Both of her parents walked her down the aisle.
The ceremony itself was short and sweet. My favorite part (besides the kiss, of course!) was when the judge read this passage, which has been my favorite quote for a long, long time:
There is a desire within each of us, in the deep center of ourselves that we call our heart. We were born with it, it is never completely satisfied, and it never dies. We are often unaware of it, but it is always awake. It is the human desire for love. Every person in this earth yearns to love, to be loved, to know love. Our true identity, our reason for being, is to be found in this desire…
Love is the â€˜whyâ€™ of life: why we are functioning at all, what we want to be efficient for… I am convinced it [love] is the fundamental energy of the human spirit, the fuel on which we run, the wellspring of our vitality. And grace, which is the flowing, creative activity of love itself, is what makes all goodness possible.
Love should come first; it should be the beginning of and the reason for everything.
The cocktail party was hosted on the roof. There were passed appetizers â€“ including Philly Cheesesteak Spring Rolls â€“ and drinks.
It was so wonderful to see my friends and their families â€“ I started to cry pathetically on the roof! Maybe it was the wine talkingâ€¦
At some point, we bustled the bride.
It was an EIGHTEEN STEP process. The bustle was actually color-coded. Not even kidding.
I was put in charge of finding Lauren flip-flops and holding her beautiful, but deadly, shoes.
In fact, all the maidsâ€™ shoes came off by the end of the cocktail party. I donâ€™t know why we donâ€™t all wise up and just wear flip-flops the entire time!
Time for the beautifully decorated reception!
The menu includes Caesar salad, crab cakes or steak, and wedding cake.
The vegan option was eggplant bake:
And I had the pasta.
The nicest part of the tablespace? The little notes that indicated that, instead lieu of favors, Lauren and Randy donated money to Girls on the Run of Charlotte. They are sponsoring seven girls through the program this fall. Isnâ€™t that amazing? So sweet!
Once the beautiful cake was cut, the dance party really started!
I woke up with no voice and sore calves. Clearly â€“ a good time!
I cried again when I said goodbye to Lauren at 2 AM. She lives in Singapore, and I miss her so much. Lauren has had such as positive impact on me. She is a strong, sweet, and very successful woman who I look up to, even though we are the same age. In fact, I wouldnâ€™t be writing this blog without Lauren. Sheâ€™s the one who had a â€˜happiness interventionâ€™ with me and convinced me to get mentally and physically healthy in the first place. I love her so much!
Now that Iâ€™m blubbering all over my keyboard (again!), Iâ€™m going to get dressed and explore Philly with the Husband before we have to hop on the plane and fly home.