Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Hello 2017

Ha ha.  It's been forever.

It's funny that silence is the result of an overwhelming amount of activity, but I suppose it is logical.

So much.

I doubt that I will ever catch up on what was happening while I wasn't writing.

12/22 -- My birthday.  A play in Chicago (Gershwin musical, "Crazy for You"), while in town to pick Shannon up from O'Hare.  Had scallops and creme brulee for a fabulous birthday dinner.  Used "points" from Shawn's travel to stay at a Hilton so we didn't have to drive home in the middle of the night.

12/23 -- Lamb dinner with Shannon and Jonathan.  This was the only really good dinner I prepared through the holidays, and I'm glad I somehow happened to do it early enough to enjoy it.

I also made a chicken soup over Christmas.  It had jalepeno peppers in it and turned out to be ferociously hot.  A good cure for a cold, except nobody had a cold.

12/24 -- Christmas Eve.  We attended a Christmas Eve service at 4:30, and picked up Jonathan after he was done working.

12/25 -- Christmas Day.  It was Sunday this year, so we started out with crustless quiche, followed by church.  Then there was a rash of opening gifts and skyping early with Laura and Matthew, later with David and Ashton. We also spent a good part of the day finalizing the seating arrangements for the rehearsal dinner and making place cards.  Shannon prepared my second delicious creme brulee of the season, naturally gluten-free and delightful.  We did some packing because --

12/26 -- We drove to Atlanta for David's wedding.

12/27 -- After sleeping in (although it seemed a brief lie-in), we went to see David and Ashton at her parents' home where we all spent a lovely afternoon and evening together and enjoyed some Christmas soup.

12/28 -- Big day with the bridesmaids' luncheon, the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner.  Everything went very well, and it was a lovely day, albeit a tiring one.  The rehearsal dinner was in a lovely, intimate section of a restaurant, dark but illuminated with twinkly white Christmas lights.  My favorite part of the meal was the appetizers, which were unexpectedly solid and included generously portioned beef and chicken skewers.  My favorite part of the evening was when people shared stories about David and Ashton.  I thought I'd be relieved and relaxed after the dinner was over, since that was the part I'd been responsible for.  I was exhausted that night, but laid in bed until almost 5 a.m., unable to fall asleep. Excitement is far more potent than caffeine.

Everybody at the bridesmaids' luncheon: (in order) me, Shannon, Laura, three of Ashton's college friends (Alexa, Monique and Hannah), Ashton, her older flower girl (daughter of her cousin Alea), her mother, her two maternal cousins (Erinne-Fay and Eve) and Casey (all three of these girls went to Ashton's high school with her), Ashton's cousin Alea (mother of the older flower girl) and her other cousin Arielle with her little girl, the younger flower girl, Ashton's grandmother, and Aunt Lori, Alea and Arielle's mother and wife of Uncle Sidney, Ashton's father's brother, who officiated.

 a dilapidated flower arrangement from the rehearsal dinner,
a few days later, after the hydrangeas had wilted

12/29 --huge day.  Huge, huge day.  It started with hair and make-up which began at 8 a.m.  Somehow, Jon's pants for his wedding suit turned up missing (he was the Best Man).  Matthew heroically saved the day, locating and purchasing a pair of pants that both matched and fit.  We gathered at the beautiful home of some friends of Ashton.  There was a massive kitchen island all bedecked with trays of delicious food from Chik-Fil-A.  Photographers and videographers showed up, and a make-up artist did my face so I hardly recognized myself.  Ashton donned her bridal attire, and I would say she was transformed into a beautiful bride, except she is so beautiful to begin with, I did not perceive much difference, although her dress and veil were gorgeous.  The guys hid in the fantastic man-cave basement, playing pool and straightening their ties, while Ashton descended the upper staircase to the delight of her bridesmaids and amidst a pyrotechnic display of camera flashes.
my three beauties

It was a fairly chilly day, around 50 with a stiff wind, so although the sun shone bravely, a damper was put on outdoor pictures.  This we discovered as the groom's family, when we were escorted out to a field for early family portraits and nearly blown away.  But no harm, the bride was saved from wind damage, and the few limited outdoor photos they were able to take of her boasted an elegantly streaming veil.

The ceremony was beautiful, in a windowed chapel bursting with light, to the dulcet tones of a string quartet playing standard classical pieces, "Great is Thy Faithfulness," the Delibes Flower Duet, and for the bride's entrance, the Largo from Vivaldi's "Winter".

Everything was red and white and bright and beautiful, with roses, violins, windows, sunshine and tears.  Afterwards, we went to the reception and ate delicious food beneath crystal chandaliers, while a live band performed many of the jazz pieces David had played throughout his saxophone career. Jonathan made a best man speech that didn't leave many dry eyes among us.  The sun set, and the evening progressed until Ashton slipped away and changed into a second long, white lace dress and joined David to walk away to their car through an avenue of sparklers waved by us, the wedding guests, while we cheered and the photographer snapped the final shots of a glorious day.

(professional pictures yet to come)

12/30 -- Shawn took Shannon to the airport and she flew back to Boston.  Paul and Alison joined us at the home we had rented, and we spent the day together, grocery shopping, taking a walk at a park, and sharing a crockpot dinner.

12/31 -- Our last day with Laura and Matthew.  Shawn took us all out to see the new Star Wars movie, "Rogue One," before they had to leave for the airport.

1/1/2017 (!) -- Shawn and Jonathan and I went to the Atlanta Aquarium where we saw a sea lion show, a dolphin show, and many amazing sea creatures, including gigantic whale sharks, humorous beluga whales, penguins, and a shy octopus.

1/2 -- We drove home.  That was yesterday.

Today I am not going to go anywhere.

But I did better recording all this than I expected.


Hope T. said...

Everything is exquisite! The setting, the color scheme, the lovely couple and their attendants! The photos are fantastic. The one of David with his father is amazing. Congratulations and best wishes to all.

As a funny aside, my sister-in-law is also a Georgia girl and also had Chick-Fil-A before the wedding. Perhaps it's a Southern custom. :)

Anonymous said...

What a lovely description of the wedding activities plus great pictures. Thanks for sharing!
Son Wes and two married grandsons all live in Atlanta now but they were all in Iowa for Christmas.
I hope you will keep writing about your children (with pictures) -- you have become my strongest contact with FBC/Anoka.