The Tuesday before our wedding I came down with a vicious cold. I had been running errands, working and putting finishing touches on the wedding non-stop for the past few months. I guess it finally caught up with me. Somehow, I made it through. If it hadn't been for my amazing friends I don't think the wedding would have been quite as successful. My dear friend Cameron has been living with my family for a little while now and has been the biggest blessing in our lives. She ran errands and finished wedding projects while I worked. She seriously made my life a million times easier. Wedding week would have been much more difficult if I hadn't had her by my side.
I worked Monday and Tuesday and decided to take the rest of the week off. I still had quite a list of things to accomplish before family started arriving on Thursday.
Thursday morning rolled around quickly. Cameron and I delivered all of the decorations and wedding supplies to the reception site that morning and Josh and I went straight to the airport after that. Ashley and Patrick (my childhood best friend and her boyfriend) flew in from Colorado to be a part of our wedding. After grabbing a bite to eat with them we finally made it home where my grandparents (from PA) and aunt and uncle were all waiting for us. I hadn't seen my family in years, so it was really great to have them all here. Shortly after Josh and I made a trip to our house for more moving and unpacking. We were hoping to have everything moved in before the wedding- I don't think we realized how difficult that would prove to be!
After spending some time at the house we headed to Al's Formal Wear to pick up his tux. My dad was already there in the fitting room trying his on. Honestly, it still didn't hit me that we were getting married at this point. We had family in town, were at the tux shop, and still nothing!
Once we got home we spent time with family and our friends, Nikki (our family friend from CA and soloist at the wedding) had arrived while we were out as well. That night three eager and giggly girls (Ash, Cameron and myself) tried to get some rest for the busy day ahead.
Friday- rehearsal day! I woke up feeling even more sick than the days before. My friends stepped up and got me some cold medicine and even kept track of the time to make sure I took it every 4 hours. I felt so special and loved. That morning I ran some final errands and went to my house with Cameron to begin packing for the honeymoon. We had so much fun going through all of my clothes and picking out what to wear. It took forever, but when we were finally done I headed off to the salon to have a mani/pedi! By this point it was late in the afternoon and we didn't have much time before we needed to get ready for the night. I went by myself to the salon but Ashley and Patrick tagged along bringing me Chick fil e! It was the first time I had the opportunity to sit down, breathe, and not worry about all of the little things that hadn't been done. I got to enjoy some quiet time and reflect on what was about to happen.
The mani/pedi took a little longer than expected- so the three of us rushed to the hotel to begin getting ready. Sitting in the lobby waiting for the rest of the girls I felt a tap on my shoulder, I turned around and saw Trevor (one of Josh's friends and groomsman) he said hi and gave me a hug... That is when it all hit me. Everyone was finally here, and for us! It was my wedding weekend!
We checked into our hotel rooms, showered and got ready for the rehearsal. Once we were in the car and saw the clock we realized we were running a tad late. I guess they wouldn't start without the Bride!
We arrived at the chapel to find a filled parking lot- made our way inside and as soon as I walked into the church I saw Josh for the first time all day. It felt so good to be in his arms, we were both so excited and overwhelmed. The rehearsal started flawlessly- at one point all of the groomsmen walked out wearing the church's purple robes- they ran through the entire ceremony in them. It was priceless. The rehearsal was over in a flash and we were on our way to the rehearsal dinner at Pappasitos Cantina. Josh and I kept looking at each other, smiling, and saying, "I can't believe all of these people are here for us." It was very humbling to see all of the people you love and care for so much all come together to celebrate the love between two people.
Dinner was incredible- great food and even better company. We gave toasts, watched the (entirely too long) slide show and said our goodbyes for the night. Josh drove me to the hotel where we loaded up my trunk with our honeymoon luggage. I stood outside of his door looking up at him in the truck- tears filled my eyes. I couldn't believe it was finally here. We exchanged "I love you's", hugged, prayed, and had our last "single" kiss goodnight. I walked inside drying my wet eyes, my heart all aflutter. :)
The girls were all upstairs on our hotel room waiting on me and welcomed me with open arms. We plugged in the video from the previous weekend of my bachelorette party and shared some good laughs watching it. We all sat in our PJ's on the beds and shared one of the most heart warming moments I've had in my life. Each girl had something sweet to say and with every word that poured out of their mouths my eyes teared up more. I was overwhelmed with the love and support from my friends. We finally said goodnight and I climbed into my warm bed and drifted off into a dreamless sleep.
6:00- Wedding day. I can't sleep. I am lying in bed with eyes wide open when I feel someone slip into bed with me. Ashely apparently couldn't sleep either. She cuddled up close to me and I could feel her excitement. We laid there talking about the times we spent, 12, 13 years old talking about this day... and now it was finally here. What a precious moment.
I hopped into the shower, packed up all of our stuff and we headed to my parent's house for breakfast. We arrived to a kitchen full of kolachies, donuts, fruit and excited family. After thoroughly stuffing our faces we packed up the cars and headed toward the salon for our hair appointments. We had so much fun at the salon playing with make up and primping- I was incredibly tired and still not feeling well, but a Dr. Pepper helped cure part of it. :) At 11:20 we had all finally finished our hair and were headed towards the reception site to get dressed. The rest of the morning is such a blur. It was filled with lots of picture taking, hugs and rushing around...
The moment I walked through the doors at the chapel I saw my daddy for the first time- the tears started to flow as I hugged him in the hallway. You can dream up a moment, and try to plan for something perfect and then suddenly- something unexpected, unplanned and even more perfect that you could have hoped for happens. It was wonderful.
Formal pictures started and ended before I knew it. I made my way down the hall to a corner where Josh was waiting for me. He had his back to the wall and hand extended out- I clutched it tightly and began to cry- I wanted to see him so badly, to be held, hugged and loved. The one thing I said all day was that I just wanted to see Josh. At that moment, all of my fears, anxieties and uneasiness slipped away and I knew that this was good. Only a few more minutes until I would be walking down the aisle toward my groom.
As the bridesmaids and I made our way to the front of the church Ashley and I started singing in unison, "Spring is here, and the sky is blue. Birds all sing, as if they knew, today's the day we say 'I Do' and we'll never be lonely anymore. Because we're goin to the chapel and we're gonna get married! Gee I really love you and we're gonna get married, goin to the chapel of love!" We had sung this song together thousands of times before growing up but this time it touched my soul like never before. We stood silently behind the curtain waiting for our turn to walk down the aisle and one by one each bridesmaid made their way out. The doors shut, my dad extended his arm gave me a hug, a kiss, and said I love you. The piano began to play our song, the doors slowly opened and my vision was blurred with tears. I could hear a swoosh of people standing as they saw us waiting to enter- we stood there in awe, full of anticipation and finally made our way down the long aisle covered in memories. My vision finally cleared and the first thing I saw was Josh standing by himself at the end of the aisle- the look on his face was one of pure, genuine love. I've never felt more wanted than I did at that moment. At the end of the aisle I hugged my daddy tight, turned around to whisper an, "I love you" to my mom and was handed over to my soon-to-be husband. He said a hushed hello and looked at me with tears in his eyes. I could feel his excitement in his touch- we were finally here.
The music stopped and the ceremony began- Chad's words were full of love and words from the Father- the ceremony went on flawlessly. I remember standing up on that stage, holding Josh's hand and could hardly contain my excitement- I would start bouncing up and down eagerly knowing that we were moments away from being husband and wife. We exchanged rings, lit our unity candle, took communion and shared our first kiss as husband and wife. I felt as if no one else was there- it was absolutely perfect. We turned around to face our congregation of family and friends as Chad announced us, Mr. and Mrs. Josh Morgan. I threw my bouquet in the air with excitement and we marched down the aisle together.
Pictures flew by and we were soon at the reception site. Josh and I decided to share our dinner privately so we could have the opportunity to eat and enjoy each other's company. Once we had finished eating the amazing food ( I started to finally feel better at this point) we got in line to be introduced to the party. Each member of our wedding party danced into the reception to "I Got a Feelin" by the Black Eyed Pees, Josh and I followed behind. Josh even gave a chest butt to one of his friends. We made our way to the dance floor where we danced together for the first time as husband and wife to Michael Buble's "You and I." It was wonderfully perfect.
Here's some highlights from the reception:
-Dancing with my dad. We started the dance off with a Jazz rendition of "Isn't She Lovely" (the day my family brought me home from the hospital they played this song for me, it's been our song ever since), half way through the jazzy rendition the music cut out and the Stevie Wonder version jumped on- we didn't miss a beat and started bustin a move on the dance floor. I can't remember ever having so much fun dancing with my dad.
- Dancing to the Cupid Shuffle with so many friends and family
- Getting to see friends and family I hadn't seen in years! I only wish we had more time to catch up.
- Listening to Chase, Athena and the girls give toasts.
- Dancing with my mom and sister
- Watching Chi dance with Brogan like there was no tomorrow
- Enjoying the incredible cakes made by the Milams
- Saying our goodbyes to parents and family
- Our grand exit... Chad, our officiant, had shared a story with Josh and I during one of our dinners about how he and his wife left their reception. He generously told us we could borrow the idea- As our guests stood in two lines blowing bubbles at us we ran down the middle spraying silly string in both directions! It was so cool to hear our guest's reactions- everyone was laughing hysterically . It was wonderful!
We made our way to the get away car- a '57 Cadillac, wings and all.
Once inside we embraced and waved goodbye to all of our loved ones. The ride to the hotel was wonderful, we chatted with the driver about Hawaii and snuggled close in the back seat looking happily into each other's eyes. We were finally married and life couldn't have been any better. It was the perfect end to a perfect day.