Wedding Weekend Winners

Because it’s hard to sum up the entire weekend in one little blog post, I figured just touching on a few highlights is the way to go…1. We were never short of good food. The rehearsal dinner was held at Mike Shannon’s Steakhouse, the wedding was catered by the Sheraton Hotel (where the reception was), and there was never a shortage of bagels, hors d’oeuvres, wedding cake and drive-thru. You can understand how I’m dealing with the weekend hangover this morning…

2. My friend Mary is beautiful. She naturally glows. But on her wedding day?She was beautiful. Even before the dress.After the dress, she didn’t look too shabby, either.  :)

3. Speaking of dresses, friends don’t let friends lace up alone.We’ve had the dresses and had them hemmed and whatnot over the last few months. I knew it was coming. There was no zipper. And it’s not pictured here, but girls were bracing themselves on door frames as the other girls threw all their muscle into pulling those laces and officially trapping us in a steel cage corset. It’s also not shown when three or four girls at a time would line up to fix the corsets. Kind of like in elementary school when you’d have a train of hair getting french braided.

Now, I sort of loved how skinny those dresses made me and all the lovely girls look. And my posture has never been better. However, I did have issues performing all of my maid of honor duties. As in, I couldn’t lean over/kneel down to straighten Mary’s dress during the ceremony. It ran the risk of me falling over and tearing her dress in the process, my strapless bra popping out in front of the crowd or me having to ask my friend Laura (who was next to me) to help me back up because I got stuck. No bueno.

Her dress was never that messed up from behind. She did a good job whipping it around as she walked. So I don’t feel so bad…

4. It was a wee bit humid on Saturday. Not awful, but pictures downtown on the cobblestone roads were cut short due to periods of light rain. After taking pictures for 2.5 hours, we were sort of ok with this.  

Also, when taking pictures in alleys, be prepared to know how to smile as you hold your nose. Garbage dumpsters do not smell pretty in the middle of the summer in St. Louis, Missouri. Word.Party buses are always a good idea. Even when you have a massive wedding party of 20.  Because people will have dates, make sure to get a bus that seats at least 32. And have sandwiches delivered to the bus for as soon as the ceremony is over. And make sure you have enough champagne and beer. Otherwise you will have to stop the bus. And it’s very had to park one of such a massive size in front of a convenience store. Just sayin’.

Also a good idea? Having your roommate for the night (hi Eva!) as your date. Eva was Mary’s unofficial wedding planner of the day- helping with the dresses/hair/makeup, keeping the boys in check, carrying things from the hotel to the church to the party bus to the reception hall, etc etc. Poor thing got put to WORK. 

Other good ideas? Clean and clear oil blotting sheets because Missouri is the most ridiculously humid place ever. And taking your shoes off before dancing on the seats of a party bus.

5. My toast was a success! I kept it short and sweet (and a little sassy because that’s how I roll).

Sadly, though, I could not raise my glass to toast with everyone else when I was done. My hand was shaking hard enough to where I’m sure all I would have done was pour champagne on myself…

6. Mary’s gift to Casey may have been the coolest thing EVER.Mary’s husband had said from day one how he wanted an ice shot luge. We all laughed and dismissed it. Then, Mary decided that would be her wedding gift to him. She’s kind of the coolest.

The shot they poured through all night was “tiger blood”. Some of you may know this shot well by a different name (ahem… red headed sluts).

This was one of my favorite shots in college. But I promise I only had one.

Ok… two…

6. Bring flippy floppies to dance the night away. 4-inch heals are not conducive to dancing all night. Only one or two girls had to learn this the hard way.

7. By the end of the night, after the reception was over, it was STORMING. At about 12:30, the power in the entire hotel went out. This dampered the after-wedding festivities.

Luckily, because I was exhausted from being up since 7:00 that morning, I was ready to turn in.

8. When the power is out and the storm continues, weird things happen. Like the alarms getting tripped at about 2:00 in the morning. This meant there was a message repeating over their sound system for 10 minutes (the back-up generators had some things still working). And lights blinking on and off in all the rooms for 10 minutes. Sleep was not easy to come by.

9. I ate like a garbage disposal on Sunday. My friend who rode to St. Louis with me (he also had a wedding) was amazed how I out-ate him. On every stop we made.

I blame the bridesmaid dress- not being able to breath deeply also meant eating was a little difficult. Who woulda guessed that?

Anyway…

This was the end of my crazy June. It’s bittersweet. I’m happy to have a few weekends of downtime. But starting with our crazy bachelorette trip to Vegas and ending with a gorgeous wedding of two of the most genuinely wonderful people I’ve met, I’ll be sad to see it end. The girls in the wedding party are girls I keep up with, but rarely get to see since our college days.

I told Mary she and Casey should probably get vows renewed and throw one of these little shindigs once or twice a year.

I’ll save you from discussing the look she shot me when I suggested the idea… yikes!

Whew. That was longer than I realized it would be. But I’m done. Or at least I have to be- time to run errands and get ready for a Cubs game! Peace out, homies!

When You Wake Up in Vegas

So I’ve been to Vegas twice this year. Does this make me an expert on the town? Obviously not. But I still enjoy giving out tid bits of information that I think will help any other poor souls survive the streets of Sin City…

1. Don’t book a flight that requires you to get up at 3:15 in the morning. Especially if you don’t sleep well on planes. If you haven’t slept on a plane the last few times you’ve flown- it’s not happening this time. When I arrived in Vegas at 9:00 that morning (their time- 11:00 Chicago time) I was exhausted, but others were already there when I got in, so I was “on the go” from the first few minutes of walking into MGM (our hotel). Because of the time change, this resulted in me being up for a total of 28 hours straight. NOT recommended. It causes wrinkles. I swear.

2. If you’re already being semi-cliche by going to Vegas to do a bachelor/bachelorette (because who wouldn’t want to?), try to be original on the festivities. Enter our Katy Perry-themed night:Sure- everyone loves a good pink feather boa and condom veil (well- maybe not everyone). But we were set at a table next to another bachelorette that did that. And who had more guys come up to talk to us and offer drinks?

Imagine me and 9 other girls in my group pointing thumbs towards ourselves. THESE GIRLS!

Plus, if you do anything stupid, not one soul in that hotel is going to recognize you the next day. Not that any of us would know about this…

3. The buddy system is an awesome idea in theory. But not always easily practiced. Especially in such a huge club like the Marquee in the Cosmopoliton. One girl ended up at Planet Hollywood afterwards because she thought that’s where everyone else was heading. Two girls ended up on a service elevator and walking through the kitchen. And that must be how I ended up walking home solo on Friday night (I was fine!) and stuck sitting in front of my hotel door for who knows how long because I did not possess one of the 2 keys we had (whoopsies). Security does not like this. And it’s also very had to have a serious debate when you’re wearing a pink wig at 4:30 in the morning.

4. Red Bull is gross. As is McDonald’s breakfast. But both are a perfect way to start your morning (separately, not together) before heading to Wet Republic- a pool bar at MGM where we knew some peeps with a cabana.5. Hanging out in a cabana the entire time will deprive you of that fabulous Vegas tan you were hoping for. FAIL. However, after all this 60-degree weather Chicago is dealing me, I loved every second of chillin’ in the 90-degree shade.

6. Biggest douchebag awards will always go to the dude with Jersey Shore haircut making it rain dollar bills into the pool. So, um, don’t do that. Although a few swifty-taken chlorine-soaked dollar bills went towards my second round of McDonald’s breakfast the next day…

7. Pool toys are fun:There’s actually a story behind the masks- I’m not sure how we acquired them the year some of us lived together, but they were often broken out to scare people who were at an afterbar at our house for the first time. It was like a hazing process.

8. Dancing is fun. Dancing to live performances is even more fun:IYAZ came and hung out when we were at Vanity in the  Hard Rock Hotel. Randomly awesome.

9. The perfect way to end your vacation/start your detox is gelato.After my fiasco of having to go to the airport, get my flight cancelled, and having to go back to the hotel (about half the girls were staying an extra night), I was done-zo. As was one of the others. The idea of putting any more vodka in our systems was a no-go, so we went with gelato instead.

White chocolate was a good choice.

10. Being organized is a good idea.However, we could have used about 3 or 4 entire bottles of alcohol less. Because you can’t pack them back into your bag when you’re only flying with carry-on. I guess we were just really excited. Oh well. I just wish we had saved the extra cash. So we could do something with it. Like make it rain at the pool?

All in all, it was a good bonding experience for the girls. Can’t wait for Miss Mary’s wedding reception…I heart this girl!  :)

Oh and here’s a freebie foodie tip for ya…

It’s not really a secret that I’m not a fan of Starbuck’s. I think it’s bitter coffee that is horrifically overpriced. And they have lackluster food (I heart you, Panera!). So on my last day, when I couldn’t do another McSkillet or McGriddle or other McCalorie-fest, I chose to try Starbuck’s “perfect oatmeal” for the first time.Yes. I totally stood with my McDonald’s coffee in the line for Starbucks. I think the girl in the logo shed a tear when I did it. And you wanna know how much they charged me for that “perfect oatmeal” in the MGM Grand hotel? $4. $4! I paid $4 for what I could have made at home for a quarter.

And I sat and ate my oatmeal that should have had gold flakes sprinkled on top. What did I think? It was ok.

But I totally make it better.

The End.

Travel Issues

Oh hey there.

Remember me?

I’m that girl who sometimes writes about silly things.

*crickets*

Oh yes… coming back now?

Ok good.

Well as you may have figured out, I pretty much went off the map in Vegas for the weekend. My friend’s bachelorette went AMAZING. Us girls had such a good time. Even after not seeing some of the chicks for a few years, it was like we never moved away from each other.

Silliness happened.

I was actually supposed to be back in the Chicago area late on Sunday. But when arriving at the airport on Sunday afternoon, I had the pleasant surprise of my flight getting cancelled. Luckily, most of the girls were still sticking around for a third night, so there was still an available bed for me.

As much as I loved being around the girlies for an extra day, this was actually not pleasant. I was exhausted. I missed a day of work. And my 4-hour direct flight turned into a 12-hour cross-country ordeal.

Why I needed to go to Washington DC to come home to Chicago from Vegas is beyond me.

But I got in a lovely cardio workout as I bolted from a flight that ran about 25 minutes late due to the storms in the midwest to my connecting flight. And had a cookie. Thanks DC.

Anyway, I was in bed a little after 1:00 last night and was up again to go to work at 5:15. Needless to say, my brain is mush. A proper summary of my trip will have to wait. Thinking too hard will just prove to be disastrous.

But because you asked:People thought we were all trying to be Lady GaGa.

It was actually Katy Perry (come on!)- the theme was “Waking Up in Vegas”.

And I still have the wig. Which could possibly make multiple repeat appearances. Because I’m in love with it.

Yep.

Happy Tuesday. I’m exhausted, my eyes have been bloodshot for the last 48 hours, and my body is currently rejecting the multiple McDonald’s breakfasts that were consumed.

Sounds about right.

Round Two

Happy Friday!

I’m off to somewhere a lot more warm and sunny!

Or at least that’s what the forecast promises me.

We’re off to celebrate my good friend Mary’s bachelorette weekend in LAS VEGAS!  Woot woot! This is my 7th time around as a bridesmaid and 2nd time as a maid of honor, but never have I ever purchased a plane ticket in order to get to the festivities.

10 girls. One City of Sin. Things are gonna get REAL.

Don’t worry mom- I’ll be in bed by 10:30 every night and promise to wear sunscreen. ;)

I’m quite excited about the little weekend away from Chicago. Some of the girls going are old roommates/friends I haven’t seen since moving to Chicago three years ago (yeah, I really need to update that “About Me” page now that I think of it)!

Anyway, I’m literally typing this at 4:30 in the morning right before I head out the door.

Yeah, I’m SUCH a dedicated blogger.

You’re welcome.

Can’t believe I finished my packing last night, which may be a new record for me.Oh what’s that pink thing sticking out there?

Hmmm… I have a feeling things are going to get WEIRD.

Hopefully next time you see me, I’ll be a little more tan, a lot more tired and completely full of stories. Maybe even a few that are acceptable for blog discussion.

Or not.

We’ll just have to wait and see.

Peace out!

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