Monday, July 30, 2012


You know that moment when you're rifling through your car and you find an old cd in between your seats or tucked way down in your console?  Before all my CDs were stolen out of my car last year, I used to do this all the time...find old ones in my car - mixes that spoke to a particular time or place in my life.  I am pretty sure I had a mixed CD for just about every mood swing I ever had - mellow mix, love songs, old school rap, going out mix, the Clearwater way mix, etc.  If I experienced something, you better believe I had a mix that had 15 songs about it.  Promise.

Last year, if you were following my blog, you may have read this post where I talked a about my stupid car getting broken into and all my CDs being jacked from the middle console.  I was seriously pissed, and still am.  I miss all my old music and the memories it would being back when I would pop in a black CD and see what was on it.

The other night while making dinner, I put on Palladia just as Grace Potter and the Nocturnals was coming on for Storytellers.  I listened to it in the background as I chatted with my mom and made dinner.  As I was cleaning up the kitchen, a familiar song came on that reminded me of that moment of finding an old cd and slipping it into the player.  I stopped what I was doing and sat on the couch to watch Grace Potter talk about her song "Apologies" and why she wrote it.

This song pretty much describes every feeling I ever had during my dating life.  I remember vividly listening to this song in my car during those crazy, confusing, and usually heartbroken moments, and singing so loudly passing cars could have probably heard me. 

Does anyone else do this?  What's your go-to break-up/boys are confusing song?  Do you ever find old cds and take yourself back to a different time or mood? 

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Wedding Week - Rehearsal Dinner

After our bridesmaid luncheon, I was absolutely exhausted and desperate for a nap.  I was a little on edge because that morning, before we went to the luncheon, we had all kinds of wedding venue drama.  The rental company we were using showed up Friday morning to set up our tent (which they had previously cleared with the venue coordinator) only to find that there was another wedding being set up for that evening!  What???  Long story short, the venue coordinator called my mom while we were getting ready to say that we couldn't set up our tent OR have our rehearsal there that evening due to the wedding taking place there.  Clearly this was a problem.  For starters, it takes at least 4 hours to set it up, and if they had to do it Friday, it would only leave about 2 or 3 hours to get the tables and decor in place....not okay.  Second, we still had to time out the music for the ceremony, which we planned to do at the rehearsal. 

So, needless to say, I was freaking out at all the things that seemed to be falling apart, combined with the fact that the forecast was putting Saturday somewhere around 105 degrees.  I tried to put it out of my mind during the luncheon, but as soon as it was over, I got a monstrous headache and could barely keep my eyes open on the ride home.  I thought a nap would help, but with all the chaos happening at the house, sleep was hard to find.  By the time I gave up on sleep, it was time to get ready for the evening.  Luckily, my mother was able to talk some sense into the woman at our venue and pretty much let her know that whether she liked it or not, we would be there at 6:15 to rehearse our ceremony.  So, it worked out in the end...

Per our usual, my family was running ridiculously late to the rehearsal, and it was all we could do to get everyone out the door.  At 6:15 on the dot, we were leaving the house to head to the rehearsal, the boy and me in my mom's car, with my mom, dad, and two sisters in the car behind us.  Halfway to the venue, I found out that the boy had forgotten the card that went to his parents' thank you gift.  Shortly after that, we had a Home Alone realization after getting a call from my brother wondering where everyone went.  As one of the groomsmen, it was his presence was kind of crucial at the rehearsal, yet somehow we managed to forget him at the house.  It was all I could do not to jolt upright in the passenger seat and scream, "Kevin!!!"

It was around this time that I started crying in the car, and declared to my fiance that, "This wedding is a disaster!"  Clearly at T-24 hours to go, I developed a flare for the dramatic.

At 6:30 we had arrived at the venue, followed shortly thereafter by my brother at 6:35 who upon stepping out of the car, immediately sweat through his shirt.  It was over 100 degrees and we were all in hell.....literally.  Our pastor lined us all up and didn't waste any time getting started. 

Currently sweating from every part of my body...trying to hold my arms away from my body to keep cool.

Still sweating...all of us...profusely...


Face off...probably still thinking here, "You forgot the damn card!!"

Yes, that would be my sister, the maid of honor, with her maxi dress tucked into the sides of her underwear....

At the end of our rehearsal, the officiant, asked us if we had any questions, which were preemptively denied when he followed that up with "It's too hot for questions!"  With that, we were off to the rehearsal dinner.

What better way to get through a scorching hot evening than with ice cold margaritas and Mexican food?  With so many of our close relatives coming in from many states away, we had nearly 75 people at our rehearsal.  The boy and I wanted to keep it fun and casual and decided to have it catered in by Qdoba.  We rented a double barrel margarita machine and bought cases of Mexican beer, which was just what everyone needed on such a warm evening. 

Our rehearsal

Handing out our groomsmen gifts!  We go them each a shirt and tie to go with their suits and custom grill tools with their names burned into the handles.

Handing out more gifts!

My grandparents on my Mom's side

My Dad and his parents - my grandparents

The extra plates doubled as fans!

My aunt Teri and Uncle Rick!

Aunt Sherri and Uncle Ara

My brother in law multitasking - baby in one hand, margarita in the other hand!

Aunts and Uncles on my mom's side

Welcoming everyone and thanking them for coming

Trying to maintain composure

Getting a little emotional

"It's not tears, it's just my eyes sweating!"

Thanking our parents

Thanking my mom for all her help with everything
 Even though it was probably the hottest day I could ever remember, the rehearsal turned out wonderful and it was really nice getting to thank our parents for all their hard work, especially my mom who planned every detail with me throughout the last year.  We pulled them aside at the rehearsal to give them thank you gifts personally - a new record player for my dad with a copy of the album with our father/daughter song on vinyl.  For my mom I got together a "splurge box" and put in all kinds of little things that she didn't get to treat herself to while they were paying for the wedding over the last year - A bottle of one of my favorite wines, a new dress, a bubble necklace, a bottle of her perfume she'd been out of for months, a CD, and some goodies from Lush for her to feel luxurious.  It was a wonderful evening.  For the boy's parents, I wanted to get them something with my new last name on it - their last name.  We opted for an entry way sign on it with their names and wedding date on it, ordered special from Etsy.  We also got them a gift card for a date night once they got back to GA. 

After saying goodbye to everyone, the boy and I headed back to my parents house where I organized my honeymoon suitcase for Sunday and got ready for bed.  The boy rounded up a number of his groomsmen and my brothers (who are the absolute WORST influence) and hit up the bars downtown despite my warnings about what he would - and more importantly would not - be getting on our honeymoon if he showed up hungover at our wedding.....but more on that later!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Wedding Week - Bridesmaid Luncheon!

Despite being in the midst of my first full work week back since all of the wedding festivities, and knee deep in a kitchen renovation project, I just could not contemplate sleep tonight without knowing that all my blog readers had heard all about my Bridesmaid Luncheon.

Umm, okay maybe not...maybe I will sleep like a baby either way, but regardless, you're here and I've got pictures, so shall we??  Okay good.

Our wedding week festivities continued on Friday morning, with all the hungover idiots (the men) heading out to the golf course for a scramble in the blazing heat, and all the ladies heading downtown for my Bridesmaid Luncheon at Theater Square Marketplace.  Three of my lovely aunts played hostess (all the planning happened from Georgia, Texas and California!) and they did such a great job planning the venue, menu, and the decor!  All of my bridesmaids, and our out of town, and close female relatives were in attendance which made it all the more special!

When I arrived, I quickly placed all the bridesmaids gifts at their seats while one of the waiters poured me a glass of wine.  It was such a great time to mingle with everyone and just relax before the craziness of the weekend got too crazy.  Once everyone arrived, lunch was served...on the menu was a choice of shrimp & grits, fried chicken sandwich with pesto aoili, and a yummy Cobb salad.  I opted for the fried chicken sandwich which I had tried there before and I knew it was absolutely delicious!

Me and my bridesmaids! Aren't they gorgeous?!

Wine chit chat...


girl talk!

Miranda and Me!

I LOVE this little man!

Aunt Karen giving a speech - the beginning of the waterworks for the day for me...

The boy's mom and my mom!

Aunt Karen and Aunt Patty - two of my lovely hostesses!

The beautiful flower arrangements!  We used these at the wedding too!


My mom!

Sassy maids!


My Mom and her sisters!
 During lunch my Aunt Karen gave a sweet and lovely speech which brought on the first of many tears for the day.  My luncheon could not have gone any better, and it was such a great way to relax with a lot of wonderful women! 

My bridesmaids gifts were earrings I had especially made for them from a bead shop in Louisville called AfterGlow (this is the same place I desinged my wedding jewelry and hair combs too).  I also gifted them each a unique floral robe to wear getting ready and for all the pre-wedding stuff on Saturday.  Lastly, I got them each a matching pair of flip flops for them to change into when it was time to start dancing.  More pics of those to come soon!

Next up...rehearsal dinner!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wedding Week - Family Arrivals!

Our wedding week was quite a jam-packed event!  On Wednesday (4th of July) Keith and I headed home to my parents house in Louisville with our cars loaded up with all of our wedding clothes and necessities, along with our honeymoon luggage.  I gave the pups a few extra treats and some wuv time (love time) before sadly heading out and promising to be back in 12 days.

While I normally quite enjoy the 4th of July, I actually despised it this year because it stupidly prevented me from getting a ton of my wedding errands taken care of (like printing the guest list at Kinkos and picking up gifts for my bridal luncheon hostesses).  All was not lost though, because my sister and brother in law and my sweet little Mason arrived around 8pm and we poured some wine and relaxed with my Aunt Sherri, Uncle Ara, and cousin Summer who had flown in the day before from Cali.  We had a big time hanging out in my parents backyard while the boys smoked cigars and the gals chatted it up and watched the neighborhood fireworks. 

If you can't tell, this is my favorite way to sit...legs draped over the boy.  I do it at home, at the movies, and pretty much everywhere, including the gate at the airport while waiting for our flight to leave on Sunday, and on the plane.  Can't help myself!

On Thursday, the real festivities began!  I woke up early and went on a run with my sister before the boy and I headed down to the County Clerk to get our marriage license.  We thought it might be a time-consuming errand, but once we got there, it actually only took about 15 minutes, and I might add that despite some long-standing stereo-types about people from cannot marry your cousin there (they verify if you are related when you apply). 

By Thursday evening, pretty much all of our out of town family had arrived in Kentucky, including a plane with 14 family members on it, flying in from various parts of California, and my aunt Patty & Uncle David from Georgia, Aunt Karen from Texas, and the boy's family from Georgia as well.  As has become the tradition, we welcomed everyone to my parents house for a cook-out, some adult beverages, and a little corn-hole.  We probably had about 40 people at the house, and with it hovering somewhere around 100 degrees, it was HOT, HOT, HOT inside and outside of the house.  Even though we were pretty much melting, spirits were high and we had a great time.  I will admit though, that seeing how miserably hot is was had me freaking out all week because our wedding and reception was outside.  It was hard to put that aside and try not to obsess about it (which I did anyways) but I tried to just enjoy the evening for what it was.

Cousins Jayme and Summer, and myself

A mix of my cousins, the boy's family, and members of the wedding party

mom and brother

Me and future husband

A little cornhole action

Aunt Kathy and Uncle Mike

Cousin Kevin and Uncle Mike

We found some hilarious pics of my aunts in the 80's while looking through my baby pics...we blew them up and made them into fans to use at the was really quite amusing, though somewhat less amusing to Aunt Patty and Karen

Me chatting it up with the boy's mom and looking like I have a baby bump (a just to be clear, I do not have one and won't for a long while!)

The point in the evening where Brynn started just holding her wine in everyone's face while she was talking to them...just for funzies

brothers, cousins, and mom being ridiculous
I will say that of all the great conversations and catching up I got to to with mine and the boy's family, the real highlight of my night was coming out to say goodnight to everyone after I had washed my face and put my glasses on, only to find my mom, dad, sister, brothers, fiance, and several members of the wedding party shotgunning beers in the backyard.  Apparently I just don't know how to party. 

It was a fun evening had by all, most especially my dad, who the next morning said, "The last time I felt like this after drinking was in college..."  And let's just make a round-about guess about how many years back that was, shall we?  Unfortunately for my Dad, he had been working on a golf scramble for the last month with about 25 of our friends/family members for Friday morning, and they had 9:30am tee time.  Did I mention that it was about 104 degrees on Friday?  I'll let you imagine how that went...

Next up will be a recap of Fridays events, starting with my bridesmaid luncheon!  Can't wait to share more!

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