We got to the facility and I was so excited to see it set up the way I had asked. Having to relayout chairs and tables would have taken a lot of our precious time. Everyone got right to work unloading the cars and before I could even offer any help it was all done. The girls went right to work unpacking there boxes and everything came together effortlessly. I was amazed at how easily it was.
They kept kicking me out of the facility since I kept trying to help spread out table clothes and set stuff up. My girls were so amazing at making sure I enjoyed the day and didn’t try to help. Soon, I was told that the guys had arrived (Dan, our best man, and Jessica, my day of coordinator had exchanged phone numbers and were in contact as the guys arrived so that we could coordinate the bride and groom not seeing each other).
I went out back to the arbor by the pond to take in the whole scene. It was amazing to look back at the facility and know how many of my wonderful friends were there and how hard they were working to give me the perfect day. I walked all the way down to the water and realized what a blessing those few moments were. I was able to get away from everything and everyone and just meditate on what we were all here to do. I have to admit though, I snuck a peak of the guys off in the distance getting ready in the parking lot.
Soon, Jessica came out and told me that we needed to switch so that the guys could get some pictures by the arbor.
At that point I headed inside and was totally taken aback by how amazing everything looked. I was totally in awe of all the hard work my friends had put in, and it was absolutely breathtaking to see my vision that had been only a dream for so many months come to be.
With everything pretty much put together, I was able to hang out on the parking lot side of the building and greet people as they walked in. I know some people think it’s tacky for the bride to be seen before the wedding, but I truly cherished the opportunity to say hello to everyone as they arrived and let me know how thankful I was that they were there. I believe it set the atmosphere for the entire event, an atmosphere of intimacy and togetherness.
About this time though, a horrible realization washed over me. I realized that I didn’t know where the cheesecakes that were in my freezer were. I realized that I had completely forgotten to tell anyone they were there and assign someone to be responsible for them getting to the facility. I ran into the facility to tell Jess. When I found her I said, “Oh no! I just realized that I think the cheesecakes are still in my freezer at home!” She responded extremely calmly with, “It’s taken care of.” I couldn’t believe it! “Wow! You guys are amazing! How did you find them! I totally didn’t tell anyone they were there!” She replied again, even more calmly this time, “It’s taken care of.” At which point I said, “Hum... ‘It’s taken care of’ isn’t the same as ‘the cheesecakes that were in my freezer are here’ is it?” Again she just smiled and said, “It’s taken care of.” Come to find out she had realized it not to much earlier and had run out to ask Jay if they had the cheese cakes. He said that the last he know they were in our freezer at the apartment and assumed we had brought them. At this very moment Dan, our best man, was on the phone giving directions to our quite lost officiant, Tim, and his family.
Over hearing the conversation he gives Tim the following direction, “Ok, at the end of that road you’ll see a Harris Teeter (grocery store). Pull into the parking lot there and get 5 bags of ice and a cheesecake. Someone will meet you there!” You can imagine the confusion that these directions illicited. But it all worked out. Tim got the ice that the boys had been planning on going back out for, a cheese cake to replace the ones that had been left behind and Dan’s sister met him there and led him safely to the facility.
Because of all of this we ended up being about 1/2 an hour late starting but since everyone had been instructed to go ahead and get something to drink, no one seemed to mind and because I had left my watch at home (quite purposefully) I didn’t even know until someone told me later.
So, with the officiant there, it was officially time to start the shindig. Jessica corralled everyone inside and we lined up. It was so amazing to see my mom and Maria dressed so beautifully, and of course my brother looking quite dashing in his tux. With a moment to reflect and a deep breath, it was time to get this show on the road.