Remember when I got married?
It’s already been a month and a half! I still can’t believe it happened. The whole wedding week was a blur of friends, family, laughing, and love. And what a party.
It started on Wednesday evening, when a handful of my local girlfriends put together a ladies dinner at an adorable little bistro in Salt Lake. We had our own bartender, a sweet man named Bob who kept my wine glass filled all night. We had a family style Italian meal that started with champagne and ended with fantastic tiramisu. It was such a special start to the most important weekend of my life. It meant a lot to have all of the women closest to me there in one room. And how cool is the room?
It dumped snow on Wednesday night. We woke up on Thursday with our last-minute decision to move the wedding indoors completely validated. John and I got settled in our beautiful rustic cabin at Sundance Resort, and then met my folks for a scrumptious dinner. It was the calm before the storm. Any friends who were already in town on Thursday night met up at The Owl Bar and we kicked off the celebration there!
On Friday, the sky was blue and the snow on Mount Timpanogos was stunning. People explored, hiked, went fishing, visited with old friends. I met Amanda, Ali, and Erinn at Sundance’s jewelry studio for a jewelry-making class. I envisioned some beading and maybe a pair of earrings when we were through. I had no idea how involved our class would be! We made gorgeous rings, from start to finish. We cut the metal. We hammered the bands. We welded things with a blowtorch. We hand-filed rough edges. We created seriously lovely rings. I will always remember the experience with these girlfriends when I wear it!
Friday night was our rehearsal and welcome dinner for all out of town guests and family. The rehearsal lasted three minutes and then it was time to greet friend after friend as they walked through the door. I was completely overwhelmed and brought to tears often- all of these people were here to support and celebrate our love. What a feeling! After a cocktail hour, we opened some doors and surprised our 75 guests with a traditional Southern shrimp boil. John’s mother, who passed away almost a decade ago, has Southern roots. We wanted to honor her- plus, it’s fun! Everyone put on a bib and dug into the delectable shrimp in piles on the table, which was lined with newspaper. A few side dishes and some desserts (cinnamon churros and carrot cake, people!) had everyone stuffed by the time the first speech began. Many laughs and many tears later, we headed back to the Owl Bar, where an unexpected live band was rocking the house. Another late night- the eve of our wedding day!
John stayed in his own cabin on Friday night, and my Maid of Honor stayed with me. I should say right now that no one has ever had a more wonderful Maid of Honor. Amanda wasn’t just there to support me as my best friend since 1984. She truly made it her job to be sure I had everything I needed and felt NO stress! From a cup of coffee in front of the fire to bringing breakfast back to our room to popping the first bottle of my favorite champagne, she made the day easy and special.
The hair and makeup artist spent a lot of the day with us, along with my fabulous wedding coordinator. Before I knew it, it was time to head to the ceremony venue. My nerves were kicking in as the minutes ticked down.
All of a sudden, my dad and I were walking into a glowing room filled with people from every part of my life, beaming big smiles at me. Again, I was totally overwhelmed, so I looked ahead at John and kept my sights on him.
The ceremony was brief but meaningful. We laughed and cried and whispered our promises to each other. We sipped from a goblet of wine (I may or may not have gone back for a second gulp) and said, “I do” to the rest of our lives. Hooray!
It was time to party!
We paused for few snaps of the camera after the ceremony under Timpanogos. We smiled with our families and took a moment to let it all sink in.
And then we were off to the cocktail hour. A funky jazz trio played in the background as people sipped on our signature drink (spiked lemonade with either bourbon or vodka from Park City’s High West Distillery) and snacked on awesome appetizers. It was a whirlwind of hugs and hellos.
We strolled over along a path lit with luminarias to the big venue for dinner, the big barn doors opened to a snowy pond, white lights and candles twinkling as the sun set.
We ate, we drank, we teared up as our wedding party and parents gave speeches. Amanda and my other best friend, Sarah, re-enacted the competitive speech in the movie Bridesmaids, which was hilarious. We fed each other absolutely scrumptious cake and the dance floor stayed full the entire night. There may or may not have been breakdancing. John did The Worm in his wedding suit, as did my friend, Heather (twice!).
After hours and hours of boogie time on the dance floor, the best party I’d ever been to was suddenly over. I replaced my Jimmy Choos with more comfortable motorcycle boots, and my new husband and I strolled back to our room, which was candlelit with rose petals everywhere.
We popped more champagne and talked for hours, going over every memory we could muster of our Big Day. Thank God we had an incredible photographer because his photos remind us of all of the things we missed in our bride-and-groom haze. Everything was simply amazing, from the first friend who walked in the door on Thursday night to the surprise truck decorations we found on Sunday morning.
We are very loved.
I say this a lot, it’s true- but I feel like the luckiest girl in the world.
*All black and white photos and any good/in-focus color shots courtesy of the amazing Tommy Chandler.*