The wedding day for us started early, at 9 am, time for a Starbucks run and then to the salon where we all got our hair and makeup done. Starbucks was essential as Charlie woke up in toddler prison at 3:30am.
I really loved my hair and make up, Megan picked great people. The salon was also just a nice way for the bridesmaids to just hang out and have some down time. We had these little boxed wines you can stick a straw in (awesome) and Potbelly for lunch while we were there. Meanwhile the groomsmen did... nothing. Men have it so easy!
While I was busy getting ready, Brad and Charlie were hitting up the fire station. a nearby park and a sports bar for lunch. Fire stations are Brad and Charlie's new thing to do together. Charlie looooves to talk about BIG TRUCKS. He also loves to eat chicken fingers, so it was his kind of day.
After hair and makeup, we headed over to the Old Red (which I keep mistakenly typing as Big Red, like that soda I used to love in the 80's) to get dressed and do pre-ceremony photos. Megan and Bruce opted not to see each other before the ceremony so we just did our photos with Megan.
Megan looked absolutely stunning in her wedding gown, didn't she? It fit her perfectly and I love the veil she wore with it. I helped pick it out! She's been so dedicated to working out and man did she have the toned arms and back to prove it. I know it must have blown Bruce away to see her coming down the aisle.
Also looking stunning? My mother. Wow. I HAVE to find a few good photos of her to post because she looked so beautiful. She wore a peacock blue colored raw silk dress that was just stunning. I have never seen a Mother of the Bride wear that color before. I will post photos, I promise.
And of course, also stunning, Charlie, who showed up a little while later - clutching a half eaten chicken finger no less - and we got him all dressed in his suit and tie. My mom had told me it would be best if he got there pretty close to ceremony time and she was right. He had just woken up from his nap, asked for chicken and Brad drove him over to the Old Red. By the time he was dressed and had a few photos, it was time to walk down the aisle. Not enough time for any 2 year old-ness to start occurring.
Now, 2 years old is pretty young to be in a wedding party, so I think we all had limited expectations of his ceremony performance. I was very impressed he made it all the way down the aisle with me without getting scared because there were a LOT of people staring at him. As we got towards the front, Charlie started recognizing people and calling out their names. NANA! BOOCE! (Bruce), DADA! All with the most sincere shock in his voice like WHAT are you all doing here??
Charlie sat down in the front row with his daddy and I took my place with the bridal party and... that's where things started to take a downward turn. Charlie didn't want to sit with his dad, he wanted to be by me, but not stand still really. Basically, he wanted to be 2 and be all over the place. He was also making a lot of noise, so unfortunately Brad had to take him out in the hall for the ceremony.
My dad presided over the ceremony, which was lovely. It was pretty funny, though, the first time my dad mentioned the rings my sister had this look of panic cross her face. At the time I thought she was thinking I might have forgotten Bruce's ring. But she told me afterwards she couldn't actually remember ever giving me his ring. Ahhh, but the Matron (yes, I know, MATRON) of honor would not let the bride down! I still need to ask her if she worried about it all through the ceremony until I actually handed her the ring!
After the ceremony we took some more pictures and Charlie played his tambourine with the cocktail hour band. He was fascinated by them. Long after they were done with their set, he would run down to the end of the hall to see if they were possibly back playing some more.
The reception was lovely, Megan and Bruce had a sit down dinner buffet and a caricature artist come and a pretty good DJ! I really couldn't concentrate on much until I got done with my toast because I was SO nervous! There were so many people there. Meredith didn't let that phase her one bit, though. I think she must have gotten the public speaking gene from my dad. She was phenomenal. So glad we did a joint toast, she really raised my performance quite a bit!
Of course, I also got a wee bit distracted during my toast because Charlie managed to wriggle away from Brad and run up to where we were toasting! When he got there he wasn't quite sure what to do other than say MAMA! Surprisingly, he didn't throw too big a fit when Brad picked him back up and carried him away.
Once the DJ started with the dance music and the lights went down, it was time for Charlie to go to bed. I could tell he just couldn't handle how loud the music was because he would run into the ballroom and then back out. By this time he had taken his shoes and socks off and was running around barefoot. The jacket from his suit was long gone and I couldn't keep his button down shirt tucked in for the life of me. So he was looking pretty classy.
I fortunately made it back from the hotel in time to see the bouquet toss and garter toss. Megan was smart and threw that bouquet before any of the girls had time to get cold feet about catching it! The girl who caught it looked rather shocked!
As a surprise to Bruce, Megan was wearing a New Orleans Saints garter and the DJ played When the Saints Come Marching In for the garter toss. It was the most wild garter toss I've ever seen! Those Tulane guys are cuh-razy. They went nuts and marched around for the whole song... with Charlie's tambourine! Meredith and I have decided every wedding needs a tambourine. It's as crucial as cake.
After that, the DJ played what he called the Tulane Fight Song. Apparently Tulane doesn't have a fight song? I don't know. Nobody was quite sure what song he was playing. The Indiana University contingent of the bridesmaids was expecting the IU fight song, though. It wasn't pretty when they found out it wasn't going to happen:
The rest of the night is kind of a blur of dancing (more tambourine involved) and helping my mom get everything loaded up after Megan and Bruce left in their limo. I was absolutely exhausted. My mother went on to stay up until the wee hours getting ready for the brunch at my sister and Bruce's townhouse the next morning. She is a rock star. I have no idea how she did it!
Charlie slept late, finally worn out from the fun. In fact, I kind of had to wake him up a bit so we didn't miss the entire brunch! As we were getting ready I managed to drop the iron on my foot. It hurt so bad I saw stars. But we had a brunch to get to! So I just gave it a few minutes and put on my shoe and went on to get us checked out. I am nothing if not task oriented.
The brunch was nice, a lot of people showed up but we missed the migas. I think my dad cooked something like 100 eggs worth of migas. I think those cuh-razy Tulane guys were ready for some cuh-razy plates of migas that morning! It's ok though, I know where the chef lives.
Brad and I headed back up to my parents' house with Charlie after the brunch and that's when my foot started to really hurt. I ended up having to go to urgent care for an x-ray and I fractured my big toe. Chipped the bone they said. I've been trying to stay off of it the past week, but it's hard with such an active toddler. Stuffing it in a shoe to fly home the next morning was a real treat, too.
The flight home was first thing in the morning and I've decided that is the golden time to fly with Charlie. He was too out of it to really be that much trouble. He wouldn't sleep on the plane, though - even in first class. Brad upgraded us. I had a lovely omelet and coffee, though, so at least one of us made the most of it!
Megan and Bruce are on their honeymoon cruise now, loving every minute, I'm sure. They've got to be so happy with how the wedding turned out. It was pretty perfect!
From my perspective, it was amazing watching my baby sister marry someone so wonderful. Bruce just fits in our family like he's always been there. They are so great together. I don't think I understood before I got there how meaningful that part of the weekend would be for me. I couldn't ask for a better brother in law! And Charlie sure does seem to love his Uncle Bruce. He kept following him around the brunch, calling out his name. Very cute.
Ok, more pictures to come, I promise!! Congratulations Megan and Bruce! Love you!!