Wednesday, October 22nd

The Wednesday before my wedding I took a half day from work. Which basically means I did my best to finish up my work week while simultaneously thinking omigod…wedding, wedding, wedding!

I headed off to the pedicure you all recommended and let me just tell you, I was 99% in heaven the whole time. Bubbles, wine, a thrown in parafin wax treatment just for being a bride. I may have even texted a few of you saying yessss, you were right!

Until the lady slipped while pumicing my heel and scratched my ankle. Like, really scratched my ankle. As in, I still have a really ugly scab on it.

Meh.

Afterwards, I ran home to finish last minute things and wait for the arrival of two wonderful bridesmaids.

Thursday, October 23rd

I woke up bright and early and rolled over to face Michael. This is the last morning we’ll see each other before we’re husband and wife, I thought. Just then he opened his eyes and smiled at me. “Good morning, my almost wife,” he said.

Love.

Unfortunately, there was no time to swoon, as I had to wake my poor, jet lagged, west-coast bridesmaid and load up the car with 800 pounds of votives, votive holders, pillar candles, hurricane glasses, rose petals, and more odds and ends. We arrived at the venue for 9 a.m. and while it was a beautiful day, it was COLD.

(OK this was actually taken the morning OF the wedding, but it looked the same the day before!)

We walked into the venue, arms full of stuff — and walked into a construction zone. Boards and paint cans filled the lobby, a table saw whirred somewhere in the background and my heart? Officially jumped out of my chest, ran across the street and threw itself into the ocean.

As I stood there, momentarily paralyzed, the venue coordinator assured me that they were just doing some work on the outside of the building and it would be perfect by the next day. Deep breath. OK.

More bridesmaids began to arrive and we headed off for our manicures before heading back to the hotel to get ready. I walked into the hotel room, saw my dress hanging on the closet and realized that the wedding had really arrived.

Wow.

At four on the dot, we arrived at the church to begin the rehearsal. Even as we walked our way through, it didn’t feel real. Like oh yeah, we’re doing this wedding thing. Some day. What DID feel real was the fact that we still had no music. Still, you ask? Yes, still. You see, on Tuesday I had received a call from the Reverend saying that when they went to practice playing the CD of our music, it had somehow slipped off the tray and fell INTO the CD player.

Yeah, I don’t get it either.

I had supplied them with a backup CD in case something happened, but as of the time of our rehearsal, they still weren’t sure if the CD player would work. They actually had a tech guy there during our rehearsal pulling apart the system and saying that he would return by 6:30 a.m. the DAY OF OUR WEDDING to keep working on it.

I wish I had a picture of my face when he said that.

Pretty bridesmaids at the church.

We left the church and headed to dinner, which was one of my favorite parts of the whole weekend. The food was delicious, the company was outstanding, and the speeches? They were so heartfelt and moving. I made it through all of mine without a tear (mostly laughs!) until I got to the ones I had written for my parents.

Then I started to choke up.

By far my favorite part of the rehearsal was during my dad’s speech. He began to talk about how when my sister and I were little, we used to sing songs in harmony. One song in particular: Going to the Chapel of Love. Suddenly, my dad pulled out a little harmonica, hummed the first bar, and began to sing.

“Going to the chapel and we’re gonna get married…”

And everyone — all 45 guests — joined in. Suddenly the room was full of song and as my sister and I joined in for the harmony, I felt so very loved.

As we said our goodbyes to everyone at the end, I headed over to Michael for one last embrace as an engaged couple.

“Are you ready?” he asked me?

“Absolutely,” I replied.

That night, I lay in the hotel bed next to my sister and tossed and turned, unable to sleep. It wasn’t really the idea of getting married that was keeping me awake. It was one nagging question.

Would we have music at the ceremony?

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