On Labor Day weekend of this year, J and I attended a very special wedding in New Hampshire. It was special not only because it was my first time being a bridesmaid, but also because I’ve known the bride since we were 12, when we bonded in Latin Club over our mutual love of Les Miz (oh yes, we were so cool it hurts). The couple lives in Columbus, Ohio (we went to visit them and their giant dog last year!) but they chose to have their wedding by Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire, and for good reason– the place is absolutely gorgeous.
Another reason the wedding was so special is because two of the other bridesmaids were also high school friends of mine and the bride’s. It was so great to see them, chat and catch up– like a mini reunion! We met the groom’s friends and sister the day before the wedding and after the rehearsal we all had lunch together– everyone was so warm and friendly it was almost like one big group of old friends. Later that night was the rehearsal dinner, where more fun conversations ensued, as well as some touching speeches and the giving of beautiful gifts (all purchased from Etsy) to the families, bridesmaids and groomsmen.
Bright and early the next morning, us ladies gathered for hair and makeup. Despite the early wake-up call it was so much fun, and I appreciated having several hours where it was just us girls. The hair and makeup ladies were so great, gushing over all of us, “You have great hair! Oh my gosh, you have gorgeous hair! I love your eyes!” etc.etc.
The morning was so incredibly relaxed (no stressed-out Bridezilla here!) that after we were all made up we even had time to watch the first 20-30 minutes of “The Princess Bride” before getting dressed (although we briefly contemplated delaying the wedding when we found out the bride has NEVER SEEN “The Princess Bride”. Horrors!).
The ceremony itself was short, just like the couple wanted. I cried. They are just so happy to be married :). After formal photos, guests were invited to change into whatever they liked– the couple wanted the reception to be informal and fun. Us bridesmaids decided to stay in our dresses, but I did trade my heels for flip-flops.
They offered a selection of microbrews during the reception– no crappy beer here :). I started with this Sea Dog Wild Blueberry, which I loved– it had a hint of blueberry without being sweet or artificial tasting. Very well done. And that right next to my beer is the wedding favor– a delicious cookie in the shape of the couple’s dog, Muncher!
And dinner was amazing. It started with a bowl of New England clam chowder…
and then came the main event.
Oooh yes. You know I love my seafood! I can’t remember the last time I ate a whole lobster, but the groom made sure to come around to each table and give a quick tutorial on what to do. We were pros in no time and it was so delicious (and messy, but thanks to a bib and a thick cloth napkin my dress actually stayed clean!).
Although the couple’s Great Dane and two cats couldn’t actually be there, they were beautifully represented on the adorable wedding cake! When the cake was first cut I was too stuffed to try it, but after dancing for a few hours I snagged a piece and it was great– tasty and moist, even after sitting out for a while.
I know this post has gotten long, but it was just such a great day. I was honored to be included in a celebration that truly reflected the bride and groom’s personalities and during which they themselves seemed to be having so much fun. Isn’t that how it should always be? I may have even shed a few tears the next day when we had to leave and head to Montreal, the next stop on our trip. Now I think I need to start drilling my friend for tips as to how to plan a flawless wedding :).