Wednesday, February 16, 2011

One Shell Of A Wedding! : Two Days Before

It's Time! I'm officially kicking off the Seashell Wedding Recaps! I hope you enjoy reading the story of our wedding as much as I am excited to share it with you - it truly was One Shell of a Wedding. No day in my life thus far rivals the depth, beauty, excitement, and pure joy of our wedding day.

Hang in there through a few posts while I share some of the adventures that lead us to the altar. The days before the wedding were filled with activity!

For those of you that might be new around here, or in case we haven't gotten fully acquainted, here are the basics: Mr. Seashell and I live in Chicago, IL and met at Northwestern University. Our wedding ceremony was in Providence, RI and the reception took place in Portsmouth, RI. We got married on the campus of Brown University, where my parents met and were married. Early in our engagement we reset my engagement ring (which the hive had some strong feelings about), I honed in on my vision for our wedding, told you why my maid of honor choice was so special, I tried my hand at DIY projects, worked to incorporate meaningful touches, got showered twice, shared some of my insights as a marriage and family therapist, and faced the sudden loss of Mr. Seashell's Mom just two months before our wedding, was humbled as friends and family pitched in to complete projects,  and reflected on finally moving from "yes" to "I do".

{Blink of an Eye Photography}

"It's time!' was also my sentiment when I posted this photo on facebook the night before we left for Providence to head to our wedding.

Even though it was just about five months ago now, the anticipation of packing for our wedding and honeymoon is an emotion I can perfectly pinpoint. It felt absolutely unreal.

As soon as we arrived in Providence, we had a most important order of business. We had to obtain our marriage license.

Marriage licenses in the city of Providence can be obtained 90 days in advance of a wedding. We were not in Providence together within 90 days of our nuptials. This caused me great anxiety. I probably said 14 times when we were packing, "Do you have your birth certificate? The FIRST thing we're doing is going to City Hall! OMG - do you think there will be an issue?" It was obviously fine. We were in and out in 15 minutes.

Then, we walked across the street to Providence Place Mall to MWTux to confirm that all the tuxes had arrived. Mr. Seashell tried his on right away to ensure it was the proper size (we had a massive mix-up when Mr. Seashell was a Best Man months before so we were having a little PTSD). Mr. Seashell's Dad tried his on too.  All was well! The men were looking great!

Next we got Mr. Seashell situated in his hotel room and I went to my parents house. This was pretty much the last time I would see him until our rehearsal the next evening. He took the next few hours to assemble the out of town boxes (a project he was completing that his Mom had started), and greet guests as the arrived at the hotel. Meanwhile, I got settled and retrieved two of my bridesmaids from the airport.

That evening, my Dad organized for "the men" to head down to Foxwoods Resort and Casino in Connecticut for a boys night. He rented a shuttle and they went out in style. The group included Mr. Seashell, his groomsmen, Mr. Seashell's Dad, a few of my uncles, family friends, and the boyfriends/fiancees/husbands of friends from Chicago. It was a bit of a bachelor party redux. I wish I had photos, but alas, I was busy - WORKING. I tease, I actually suggested the whole outing because I knew the girls would be busy.

The only project I'd left until the "last minute" was the favor assembly: alphabetizing, numbering and attaching leaves to the olive oil bottles. I did not want to finalize the seating assignments until the last possible opportunity, leaving room for late cancellations or additions. Additionally, we created our leaves in Chicago and the equipment necessary to reprint was not travel-friendly. So, names were printed on the leaves but not table numbers. I made a few blank leaves, too - just in case. In the end, my preparation was unnecessary: 100% of our guests who replied "yes" were in attendance on our wedding day!

Here we are in action:

All leaves were lined up in alphabetical order. I arranged the leaves and then read off the tables to Bridesmaid Leah. She was the official "writer" due to her ability to make her lettering look like a typeface.

Bridesmaid Carrie was the official hole-puncher, while Bridesmaid Allie was a ribbon-threader and bow-tier. 

After a while we developed a highly efficient system. Even still, we were at work for hours. 

Allie's secretly thinking, "I'm so getting you back for this when you're my MOH next year, Seashell". 

Despite our looks of very serious concentration, we actually shared a lot of laughs and made a fun night of our favor assembly. Delirium also set in at some point, but that keeps life interesting, right? Seriously though - I have some pretty amazing friends. I treated them properly the next morning with manis, pedis, and luncheon. That's up next!