Thursday, September 8, 2011

Our wedding weekend: Part 1

Leading up to the wedding weekend...

The week before our wedding was quite possibly the busiest week of my life. I was non-stop at work trying to finish my projects and tie up loose ends in preparation for being gone a week and a half. I was also busy crossing things off my to-do list and making new lists to triple-check and make sure I had everything covered. And if you saw my last post before the wedding, I had this whole HURRICANE business to worry about. As the week went on, my worries died (thankfully!) but it was a little scary at first. Oh yeah, and there was an earthquake that shook most of the east coast. Talk about natural disasters stressing a girl out! WHEW!

Wednesday night was my last night alone with Shane before our wedding night. We spent it staying up late and packing our numerous bags that we would need for the night before the wedding, wedding night, and honeymoon. Shane was planning on leaving for Florence on Thursday to meet my dad and spend the night so they could have their guys golf outing early Friday morning.


I arrived at work to find my coworkers surprise me with a mini-shower! They had Chick-Fil-A breakfast trays and gave me my entire set of serving pieces I'd registered for. I have only been at this office for 3 months, (and the last 3 months of wedding planning, at that) but my coworkers have made me feel so accepted and loved.
Anyways, after our mini-party, it was work, work, work! I barely had time to concentrate on any last minute wedding details. But I did get to take a lunch break to go pick up my Maid of Honor and meet her and Shane for lunch before he said goodbye to us! MOH came back to work with me and napped in my office while I finished up my day. After work, we met her friend for a drink, and the poor guy was probably annoyed beyond means because I was in SUPER wedding mode at this point. MOH and I spent the rest of the night preparing and making sure EVERYTHING was ready for us to leave Friday morning.


Bright and early Friday morning, we hopped out of bed about 7am and headed to Florence with our friend, and my right hand for the weekend, Shannon. We met my mom and other bridesmaid, Lyndsey and headed to get pampered at the nail salon for the first half of the day.

I can't even begin to tell you the emotions I was feeling Friday. Everyone with me kept asking if I was nervous/excited/etc, but I think it was a mixture of everything. I never felt nervous about the wedding itself, it was more about hoping the details were taken care of and that things would go to plan. Because of all the time and energy I had invested in the wedding, I wanted to make sure that all of my vendors and details were set. (which they were, I should have known, I had great vendors!)

After a day of running a few errands and finishing up our pampering, it was time to get ready for the rehearsal/dinner. Everyone showed up to the rehearsal on time and I began my directing. I had lists printed of how I wanted everyone lined up and seated, and the first half of the rehearsal was spent perfecting that list then explaining it to everyone involved. (side note: Shane and I have very extended/not traditional families, so our seating of parents, grandparents, and family was probably a little more confusing than most)
After the rehearsal, we headed back to the hotel for our dinner. I cannot tell you how happy I was with how everything turned out with the dinner. They had it set up beautifully, and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.

And then there was the groom's cake. (time for a little bragging). I may be biased, but it was the best cake I've ever seen. When ordering Shane's cake, I knew I wanted something to do with Carolina/drinking/tailgating, but that was about it for my ideas. The lady who made Shane's cake took those ideas and created this little beauty:

Amazing groom's cake
Everything on the cake was edible from the football (made from ride crispies) to the ice (made from blown sugar). And the actual cake part was a delicious yellow cake with chocolate frosting (Shane's favorite.)
After the rehearsal dinner, Shane and I said our goodbyes and it was party time with my girls in the hotel room. We had a great time talking and eating more cake. :) Everyone headed to bed around midnight and I tried to fall asleep but that was next to impossible. I finally fell asleep about 4 am, only to wake up at 6:30!


I scheduled our bridal breakfast at the hotel for 8:30 Saturday morning. All the girls, mothers, and grandmas met in the room for breakfast looking bright eyed and bushy tailed. We ate and drank lots of coffee, then I gave the girls their gifts. I was so excited about the gifts I found for them and couldn't wait to see their expressions. They all seemed to love their wristlets that I got them and that made me very excited. Before the breakfast concluded, we had the traditional Charm Cake that my bridesmaid's mom, Linda, made for us. Each bridesmaid, bride, and honorary attendants pull out a charm and the charm they pull is supposed to represent what will happen next in each of their lives. It was pretty funny to watch everyone pull out their charms, and my favorite part was when my sister in law, Melissa pulled out the baby charm. She and my brother do NOT want kids so you can imagine the look on her face. The ironic part of the charms, were that my MOH and friend, Shannon pulled out the "true love" charms, because both of them are in pretty serious relationships with their true loves! It was pretty freaking adorbs if you ask me! :)

girls at the bridal breakfast

The next four hours were spent at my cousin's hair salon. We all hung out while everyone took their turns getting their hair done by my cousin or her friend, Allison. Hanging out at the salon was pretty fun and we had a great time having some pre-wedding cocktails and eating delicious cake balls and pizza. My photographer was at the salon to document us getting ready so I will be very excited to see the pictures she captured! Although we were at the salon for a few hours, it felt like 10 minutes to me. My mind was in a million places, and of course, I was wondering what Shane was up to as well :)

mah hurrr
 My first cry of the day came at the salon, when my friend Jess sent me the sweetest text know to mankind.  
A little history about Jess: I became friends with this wild and crazy girl my freshman year and even lived with her for a year of college. The minute she started hanging out with me and Shane, and declared us her adoptive parents, and it kind of stuck. Earlier this year, when I invited her to the wedding, she immediately said she would never miss her own "mommy and daddy's" wedding and couldn't wait because she always knew we'd be getting married.
Anyways, Jess lives in Boston and due to the hurricane hitting up there and her work schedule, she couldn't find a flight for returning to Boston after the wedding. Jess texted me to tell me how sad she was that she couldn't come and that she had even asked her Uncle Paul (who died last year and she was VERY close to him) to look over us for the day. When I read this, I burst in to tears. It was more of a moment when everything hit me that I have some pretty amazing friends who really care about me and Shane and were doing SO much to make sure this day was perfect for us. It's indescribable how much love I felt then from everyone surrounding me.
After I got my hair and make up done, it was time for everyone to head to the church. All of the girls were meeting Shane and the groomsmen where the limo was picking them up, and I drove to the church with my step-mom. When we arrived at the church, no one was there and I had a minor freak out because I wanted to be in the church before the limo arrived. I didn't want to run in to Shane before the ceremony and I didn't want him to see me all dolled up until then. Thankfully, the pastor arrived just in time for me to get settled in to the room I was getting ready in right before the limo pulled up. It was 3pm and we had 2 hours until the ceremony was to start.
I was very calm at this point and was just ready to be around everyone so we could snap pictures and finish getting ready. As I was in the room watching everyone pile out of the limo, I turned around to see my bridesmaid, Bekah busting through the door holding a candle. She was followed by the rest of my bridesmaids with worried looks on their faces, and my MOH who headed straight for her "emergency bag". I could tell something was wrong, and everyone started fussing about how my cousin, Brittney's dress wouldn't zip. (we had problems with these dresses from day one. The zipper always got stuck where the material changed and it was next to impossible to get them zipped.) Bekah proposed we put hot wax on the zipper to make it zip, while my MOH, Pam was looking for her sewing kit to sew Brittney in to the dress. I walked over to Brittney and after 2 tries, was able to get the dress zipped. Everyone just stopped and looked at me and went on about how they had tried to zip the dress for 30 minutes and no luck. (i thought of it as a sign that I was pretty damn lucky that day :) hah)

Brittney's dress
 That next hour and a half went by extremely fast. We got me in to my dress and veil and took some pictures with the girls. I kept asking everyone how Shane was doing, and made Pam go check on him and to give him a gift i'd put together for him. I remember looking out the window to see guests start arriving and before I knew it, everyone was clearing out to go get in place for the ceremony to start.

I felt like a princess
After everyone cleared out of the room, my dad came in and we both cried a little. I knew I would cry when I saw my dad. It was the first time Dad saw me in my dress and he told me how beautiful I looked. Next thing I knew we were heading down the hall to get ready to go down the aisle.

That's when the nerves kicked in. I knew it would happen right before the ceremony. Everyone kept asking me all day if I was nervous, and I said no, but I knew it was coming. It wasn't like normal nerves I've had before. I wasn't scared. I was happy. Beyond happy. This was the moment I'd been thinking about for what seemed like forever. This was the moment that I first pictured many many years ago when I realized I wanted to spend the rest of my life with Shane Hyatt. I was about to see the face I would get to see the rest of my life and I was so stricken with emotions I've never felt before. I don't think I'll ever be able to describe how I was feeling but I do know this...Among them all, I felt happy. I felt sure that this was EXACTLY what I wanted.

Shannon snapped this pic right before we were about to go in to the ceremony.

I'll continue this post tomorrow and describe the ceremony and reception! Stay tuned!

*photo credit: my amazing friend Shannon was snapping these pics along the way! We are waiting on our pics from the photographer, but don't worry I'll share more!*

No comments:

Post a Comment