With my mom and sisters the day before the wedding
We've been back since Monday afternoon and you can be sure my delay in updating the blog is the result of exhaustion from 1) the jam packed fun time we had and 2) the difficulties in taking a 2 year old to an out of state wedding.
Also, I've been hoping more pictures from different cameras would pop up as I got next to none on my own camera. So far I've just seen pictures from my sister's (the bride's) camera and there were none of Charlie or Brad at all and non of any of us at the rehearsal dinner. I distinctly remember posing for photos, just a matter of photos popping up as people get around to downloading them.
ANYWAY. We arrived in Dallas Wednesday night after an evening flight. I decided to switch up flight times for this trip to see if we would have any better results than we've been having with the afternoon flights. There are 3 directs a day between Richmond and DFW. I would say the evening flight was a smidge better, but not by much. We even had the bulkhead row.
Fortunately, there was a lovely and very patient woman in uniform who Charlie took a liking too. He kept busy delivering all sorts of magazines and those little paper bags the airline provides in case you get airsick. She didn't look airsick, but had plenty of bags, just in case.
Thursday more people, including my sister Meredith, arrived in town and that night we went to my mom's Teacher of the Year banquet at Eldorado Country Club in McKinney. It was so nice! Well, except for the complete lack of wine. But there was a lovely beef tenderloin to make up for it.
There were speeches and videos of all the teachers in the district being interviewed. I loved my mom's video clip - it was very "her". Funny and heartfelt and sincere. In fact, this entire topic deserves its own blog post instead of being smushed in with the wedding events. Sorry Mom.
When we got home from the banquet Charlie was asleep and the house was just buzzing with activity getting ready to leave in the morning for the entire weekend. I think Charlie must have picked up on all the energy because he got up and would not go back to bed. And I couldn't force him because that little stinker can now crawl out of the pack n' play. Yeah. He crawls out and gives me the most defiant, stubborn look, which frankly reminds me of Brad.
I finally managed to get him down at 1 AM. Yeah. I was a zombie in the morning. Charlie was... just fine! Had delightful conversation with Mimi in the car about every truck we passed! BIG trucks!
We packed up the car and headed down to the Stoneleigh Hotel where Megan and the other bridesmaids were waiting and we were all staying for the weekend. I have to give props to the hotel - it was so nice! Beautiful historic hotel just a few blocks away from the action in uptown Dallas and the service was incredible. I'm pretty particular about hotels but would stay again at this one in a heartbeat. An excellent choice by the bride and groom.
We dropped Charlie off with his Didi and Papa, who were already checked in to the hotel, and headed to the nail salon where my sweet mother treated the bridal party to manicures and pedicures. The salon even let us bring in champagne to sip during our treatments! It was so much fun. We chatted and I felt so relaxed after the stressful bedtime battles the night before with Charlie.
Bride and MOB at the nail salon
After nails we went over to Saint Ann for Megan's bridesmaid lunch, hosted by her good friend/ boss's boss/flower girl's mom Tammy. Saint Ann is a relatively new hotspot in Dallas and is a converted schoolhouse. They've sleeked out the inside and have these huge doors out front they can open so the whole place feels like a giant patio. The food was delicious. I'd love to go back for dinner.
Bridesmaid luncheon at Saint Ann
Megan gave all of the bridesmaids some lovely, thoughtful bags of goodies to thank us for being in her wedding party. I think she'd been picking things out over the course of a year! She also got Charlie a giant tambourine so he could play along with the band during cocktail hour. They would be the same band that played at her engagement party, whose tambourine Charlie kept stealing.
After the lunch I headed back to the hotel to collect Charlie and attempt to get him down for a nap. My mother-in-law had been mostly unsuccessful getting him to sleep in her room since he could see her from his crib. Fortunately in our room, the closet was very large and had room to put the crib in it! Once Charlie was in the closet he was asleep in 10 minutes.
Yes, you read that correctly. I stuck my son in the closet to sleep. Like a little toddler prison. But it WORKED!
The rehearsal was that afternoon at the Old Red Museum, where the wedding was to be held, and the rehearsal dinner was that night at Mattito's in uptown. Are you starting to get an idea of why we were all so tired?! Action packed!
Bridesmaids at the Rehearsal
My sister Meredith compiled a slideshow for the rehearsal dinner that was so lovely. In fact, that was when it really hit me that Megan was getting married and I got a little teary. There was one particular photo that did me in - of the three of us with our Daddy Chuck, who Charlie is named for. I don't know that I'd ever seen that photo before. It was all very sweet. Meredith did an awesome job on that slide show.
After the rehearsal dinner, Megan and Bruce had reserved the upstairs room at the Ginger Man for everyone. Brad and I were going to head back to the hotel with Charlie but my cousin convinced us to come by since he had taken his young niece there before.
We gave it a try but unfortunately Charlie was just spent and all funned out. I was sad to miss the fun times, but hey, that's the life of a toddler parent. We took him back to the hotel, locked him in toddler prison and I collapsed.
Ok, I should stop now and write up the rest in a separate post. Part 2, the Wedding Day!