Well, the ‘wedding of the century,’ as I’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 Randy’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 – with sundried tomato, cucumber, and cous cous – were even better.


The champagne was flowin’!


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 bride’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 – 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 – it was time for the ceremony!  The entire event was held at a restaurant called Davio’s.


I was nervous heading down the aisle, but I had a nice groomsmen to hang onto.  Thank goodness.


Then, it was Lauren’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 ‘why’ 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 – including Philly Cheesesteak Spring Rolls – and drinks.



It was so wonderful to see my friends and their families – I started to cry pathetically on the roof!  Maybe it was the wine talking…




Silly friends.


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 maids’ shoes came off by the end of the cocktail party.  I don’t know why we don’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.  Isn’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 – 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 wouldn’t be writing this blog without Lauren.  She’s the one who had a ‘happiness intervention’ with me and convinced me to get mentally and physically healthy in the first place.  I love her so much!


Now that I’m blubbering all over my keyboard (again!), I’m going to get dressed and explore Philly with the Husband before we have to hop on the plane and fly home.



  • Nicole September 11, 2011, 11:30 am

    Beautiful recap. Lauren looked so lovely!

  • Dori September 11, 2011, 11:59 am

    Gorgeous wedding dress. Looks like a perfect evening!

  • Sarra September 11, 2011, 12:00 pm

    what a stunning wedding! wow!!!! so impressed!

  • Sweet and Savvy September 11, 2011, 12:02 pm

    Everything looks absolutely, amazingly beautiful! I especially love the passage, and the idea of having both her parents walk her down the aisle!

    Congratulations and my best wishes to Lauren !:) Safe travels for you as well!

  • Khushboo September 11, 2011, 12:02 pm

    Congrats to the happy couple, Lauren looked lovely!

  • Leanne (Bride to Mrs.) September 11, 2011, 12:07 pm

    What a beautiful bride/wedding/bridal party —> everything!

    I love this quote you put on your page: Love should come first; it should be the beginning of and the reason for everything.

    …it’s so true!

  • Steph @ A Hungry Bookworm September 11, 2011, 12:08 pm

    You’ve got me blubbering now too! Such a beautiful wedding and recap.

  • Mandy September 11, 2011, 12:12 pm

    This post made me happy. And her dress was fabulous.

  • kirsten September 11, 2011, 12:22 pm

    Lauren and all the bridesmaids look beautiful!! I love how your hair was done Caitlin!

  • Lee September 11, 2011, 12:33 pm

    Her dress is really similar to what mine looked like (which took about 15 minutes to get bustled!) I actually wonder if it’s the same dress. Is it Maggie Sottero?

  • peacebeme September 11, 2011, 12:34 pm

    I love those bridesmaids dresses! Where are they from?

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin September 11, 2011, 12:40 pm

    What a beautiful wedding! That must be so hard to have to say goodbye to her again – but at least you got to be together for this amazing day. 🙂

  • Molly @ RDexposed September 11, 2011, 12:41 pm

    I hate waking up to sore calves!!

  • Army Amy* September 11, 2011, 12:49 pm

    Looks like the wedding was beautiful and full of love. I’m still curious: how did you get your t-shirt off? Did you have to cut it?*

    • Caitlin September 11, 2011, 8:48 pm

      Lauren helped me take it off and it was fine!

  • Kelly September 11, 2011, 12:54 pm

    What a gorgeous bridesmaid dress!!!

  • CJ @ http://healthy-happy-whole.com/ September 11, 2011, 12:55 pm

    The wedding looks gorgeous!!! Davios is aweosme! Anywhere down walnut street, rittenhouse square, or chestnut is pretty much an amazing atmosphere! I hope you guys have fun exploring today! there are so many good vegetarian or local restaurants there. I could probably go on for days!!!

  • Kyla September 11, 2011, 12:58 pm

    What a sweet post. Everyone looked fab and the bride was glowing. What a killer dress!

  • Jess-The SemiAbnormal Gal September 11, 2011, 1:06 pm

    Your maids dresses were gorgeous! Where did ya’ll get them?

    My bestie’s (tiny) bustle was numbered…it had 5 different pick ups. I can only imagine the complexity on that one.

    Thank you for sharing such a beautiful event!

  • Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca) September 11, 2011, 1:08 pm

    LOVE those bridesmaid dresses!

    What a gorgeous bride!!!! Congrats to the happy couple 🙂

  • Alaina September 11, 2011, 1:22 pm

    What a gorgeous, beautiful wedding! You and Lauren looked amazing. I love your dress!!

  • Alanna September 11, 2011, 1:23 pm

    This post was so sweet! You definitely did your friend justice in writing it. Question…having never been part of a bridal party before, what is a bustle??

  • Cait @ Beyond Bananas September 11, 2011, 1:27 pm

    What a beautiful wedding – filled with happiness… yet understandably emotional – especially in ths case. I cannot imagine having a friend live not just across the country.. but across the world. How wonderful that you were able to celebrate her marriage here! 🙂

    Side note: I have just decided on purple for my wedding 🙂

  • Hilliary @ Happily Ever Healthy September 11, 2011, 1:31 pm

    Beautiful wedding! The bride looks beautiful, and I love your dresses!

  • Amber K September 11, 2011, 1:32 pm

    What a sweet recap! So glad you had a fun time, but I wish you could see Lauren more often. It stinks that plane tickets are so expensive!

  • Shaya (Eye Girl Eats) September 11, 2011, 1:32 pm

    Gosh, what an absolutely beautiful wedding/reception/bride/(bridesmaid!)!

    The picture of you both at the end is lovely.

    I LOVE weddings!! I hope the next one we go to is half as gorgeous as Lauren’s!

  • Gina @ Running to the Kitchen September 11, 2011, 1:37 pm

    You all looked so gorgeous. Lauren’s dress, shoes and flowers were fabulous. So glad you had a fun time!

  • jamie @ cueyourlife September 11, 2011, 1:41 pm

    You all looked amazing! AMAZING! So much fun!!

  • theorist September 11, 2011, 1:46 pm

    beautiful post!

  • Emily @ Comfortable Home Life September 11, 2011, 2:02 pm

    What a beautiful quote on love! I’m going to write it down. Looks like y’all had a great time. Gorgeous wedding!

  • Shari September 11, 2011, 2:03 pm

    Aww, Rittenhouse is the PERFECT place for pictures. They’re going to be beautiful. And, how fitting is that, because the whole wedding looks and sounds like something out of a fairytale. So special!

  • Jess@atasteofconfidence September 11, 2011, 2:44 pm

    Beautiful post. I can understand why you are emotional…it’s hard when friends get married sometimes, especially when they live so far away!

  • Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife September 11, 2011, 2:45 pm

    aww that was so SO sweet!! What a beautiful post (and wedding!)

  • Jessica @ Fit Chick Wannabe September 11, 2011, 2:52 pm

    Everything looks beautiful!! Makes me want to get married again….sans the planning lol

  • Meagan September 11, 2011, 3:08 pm

    The picture of you and Lauren at the end is beautiful. SO precious. 🙂 She’s lucky to have a friend like you!

    PS – Any idea where the bridesmaids gowns were purchased? I absolutely adore them!

    • Caitlin September 11, 2011, 8:36 pm

      Check out comment 45!

  • megan September 11, 2011, 3:25 pm

    everyone looks so beautiful!!

    jealous of how often you’ve been in philly this month! hope you’re enjoying your last day !

  • Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy September 11, 2011, 3:25 pm

    Aww…it looks like you have some great memories! I just love weddings :).

  • Moni'sMeals September 11, 2011, 3:29 pm

    I Love your dress! BRAVO! WHat a beautiful day indeed. 🙂

  • Sana September 11, 2011, 3:35 pm

    I think it’s amazing that you have a wonderful friendship. I hope I have that someday 🙂

  • Anne September 11, 2011, 4:04 pm

    I’m joining all the begging: WHERE are those gorgeous gray bridesmaid dresses from?1 Brand name?! Anything! I’m desperately searching for a dress to wear to my sister’s wedding and that is *perfect*. Thanks in advance for letting us know!

    • Caitlin September 11, 2011, 8:36 pm

      Check out my answer to comment 45!

  • Hillary September 11, 2011, 4:07 pm

    You all look STUNNING. What a beautiful event for what seems like a beautiful couple! Safe travels.

  • Joey September 11, 2011, 4:29 pm

    You look absolutely gorgeous! Loved the bridesmaids dresses & it looks like the reception was really pretty. Enjoy the rest of your trip!

  • Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga September 11, 2011, 4:34 pm

    You look great!

    I love the ring and the shoe pics…very cute shots 🙂

  • Grace September 11, 2011, 4:36 pm

    Lovely post! The last picture of you and the bride is beautiful! 🙂

  • Christina September 11, 2011, 4:43 pm

    What a great post- especially the end. It’s great to have someone you admire so much, and I’m sure she appreciates your appreciation!

  • Lindsay September 11, 2011, 4:57 pm

    You’ve got to inform me where the bridesmaids dresses are from, and who they are made by…they are absolutely stunning!

  • Lindsay September 11, 2011, 4:57 pm

    You’ve got to inform me where the bridesmaids dresses are from, and who they are made by…they are absolutely stunning!

  • Erin @ Big Girl Feats September 11, 2011, 5:17 pm

    Awww I love friends’ weddings. I loveee your dress! And Lauren’s dress is beautiful too – and those shoes! She’s a trooper!

  • Brittnie (A Joy Renewed) September 11, 2011, 5:29 pm

    What a fun celebration! I love the bridesmaids dresses… love the color and flower design on the front. Leaving good friends like Lauren is always hard. What a blessing that despite your distance you guys have remained so close.

  • Katie @ Peace Love and Oats September 11, 2011, 5:31 pm

    I’m glad you had such a wonderful time and with a wonderful friend! Weddings are always a good time!

  • Alexa @ SimpleEats September 11, 2011, 5:34 pm

    Gorgeous wedding. I LOVE the colors! That dress is beautiful!

  • Lisa September 11, 2011, 5:37 pm

    what a stunning wedding! So very elegant!

  • Katie of Cabbage Ranch September 11, 2011, 5:58 pm

    A gorgeous wedding! You and Lauren (and everyone else) looked beautiful, and I loved her choices of tablescapes and centerpieces. Seeing a good friend happily married is always a joy.

  • Corrie Anne September 11, 2011, 6:19 pm

    Happiness intervention friends are the BEST!!! I loved seeing you so glam!! You looked gorgeous. And the whole wedding – completely stunning!

  • Ari @ Ari's Menu September 11, 2011, 6:37 pm

    Beautiful!! I LOVE her dress!!! And she chose awesome bridesmaids dresses!

  • maria @ Chasing the Now September 11, 2011, 7:08 pm

    Beautiful wedding! 🙂 Lauren looks great!

  • Ash @ Good Taste Healthy Me September 11, 2011, 7:26 pm

    What a beautiful wedding. She looks absolutely beautiful!

  • Shannon September 11, 2011, 7:39 pm

    I love your dress!! How much fun:) I have a random question- did you ever announce a winner for the Ramblin’ rose half? I’m sure I somehow missed it:)

    I absolutely LOVE your blog! I used to be a GOTR coach before I had my daughter 🙂 I’m a teacher and love to post OB notes at school where I teach. Thanks for your inspiration!

    • Caitlin September 11, 2011, 8:29 pm

      Yes I did! But I’m about to announce the 5k winner now!

  • katie @ KatieDid September 11, 2011, 7:47 pm

    I have a huge smile on my face reading this. You looked stunning in that dress. Everything looks like it came together perfectly. And its so heartwarming to read about how thankful you were to be spending time with family and friends.

  • M September 11, 2011, 7:58 pm

    Please tell your buddy Lauren
    that she looks BEAUTIFUL and that
    her dress is simply stunning on her.

    Nice that she doesn’t mind her wedding
    on your blog,as it was a fun read!

  • Holly @ The Runny Egg September 11, 2011, 8:16 pm

    What a beautiful wedding! I love the color of your dress — it looks really good on you!

    My favorite shot is of all the different rings!

  • Lauren September 11, 2011, 8:21 pm

    What a beautiful wedding!! Love the dresses!

  • Allison September 11, 2011, 8:50 pm

    Wow, beautiful wedding- ceremony, reception, dresses… Love the picture of all the rings!

  • Annie@stronghealthyfit September 11, 2011, 9:14 pm

    What a gorgeous wedding! Sweet post 🙂

  • Sam September 11, 2011, 9:14 pm

    beautiful beautiful wedding! And I love hearing how she inspired you and influenced your life in a positive direction 🙂

  • Dana @ the Big Fat Skinny September 11, 2011, 9:35 pm

    Wow, what a gorgeous wedding! Congrats to the Bride and Groom!

  • Katie September 11, 2011, 9:37 pm

    Wow! What a stunning wedding. I love, love, love Lauren’s shoes. Do you know what brand they are?

    • CaitlinHTP September 12, 2011, 11:24 am

      They are from Badgley Mischka

  • Dominique September 11, 2011, 11:22 pm

    You and Lauren look gorgeous! I love Lauren’s shoes but they sure look killer. And the quote you included made my eyes well up a little. I’m a hopeless romantic and am a little extra sentimental and romantic since my anniversary with Sean is this Saturday. It’s our 10-year anniversary.

  • Kristin September 12, 2011, 12:12 am

    Beautiful! Where were the bridesmaid dresses purchased at?

    • CaitlinHTP September 12, 2011, 11:24 am

      Check out comment 45! “:)

  • Mel September 12, 2011, 12:52 am

    What a beautiful tribute to your best friend! Best friends=awesome.

  • E September 12, 2011, 1:54 am

    The bridesmaid dresses were beautiful – especially the color & the flowers.

    I really love the idea of donating to a charity in lieu of favors. My cousin got married this summer & he and his wife donated money to St. Jude’s hospital. 🙂

  • Brittney September 12, 2011, 8:05 am

    Awww, beautiful wedding! I love the passage read at the wedding- that’s amazing.

  • claire! September 12, 2011, 9:32 am

    Lauren’s dress is positively GORGEOUS!!!! I’m already married, but wow, that would be my dream dress if there ever were a round 2 (with the same guy, of course!)

  • Julie September 12, 2011, 9:50 am

    You looked gorgeous, love your dress & the bride’s dress too!!!

  • Green Dog Wine September 12, 2011, 11:20 am

    Those dresses are absolutely gorgeous – ALL of the ladies looked stunning! SO FUN! (but I do hate those sad goodbyes too!)

  • Shayla @ The Good Life September 12, 2011, 12:55 pm

    What a gorgeous wedding and congrats to Lauren! And I absolutely love the bridesmaid dresses, if I could do my wedding over I would choose those!

    And what designer is Lauren’s wedding dress? It’s gorgeous!!

  • Julia @ Brides Up North September 12, 2011, 1:23 pm

    Ahh you look gorgeous Caitlin! Congratulations to the new Mr and Mrs! xxx

  • Julia @ Brides Up North September 12, 2011, 1:24 pm

    p.s. I am running a bridal bootcamp over on my blog at the moment that some of your readers might like 🙂 Its all about shaping up healthily rather than crash wedding diets and I am working with a PT.

  • Dee September 12, 2011, 1:51 pm

    I’m not from Philly, but I lived there for six years and I loved it- didn’t really want to ever leave. So the first part of this post made me sooooo “home”sick!!

  • Sophie @ threetimesf September 12, 2011, 4:50 pm

    Wow, that really does look like an amazing wedding! I love the idea of having photos before the ceremony 🙂

  • Lesley September 13, 2011, 8:59 am

    Congratulations to Lauren! You all looked gorgeous! And that headless photo…major lols. 🙂

  • kelly September 18, 2011, 9:07 pm

    I wake up with sore calves when I drink too much the night before too! What’s up with that?