Oct 23, 2010
Well ladies, our professional pics came in and we're more than excited...they did an awesome job I think! Without further ado, here are just a few...thanks for looking!!
(yes, there is a male bridesmaid, but he'd switch back and forth! lol)
(only time I bawled like a baby, I was sooo good!)
NOW, here are some of my faves with just my hubby and I! :)
Thanks for looking!! :)
Here are a few moments captured by friends and family!
my step-dad and I dancing to "She's A Lady"!
our centerpieces and place cards/favors...very simple!
The Pictures and Reception!
After our ceremony, we walked out of the church...and it was NOT raining! The Lord heard our prayers!! The Weather Channel DID predict that it would not rain from 2-5pm, right when we were out and about taking our pictures...and they were RIGHT! :D
The bridal party, Father John and the photographers all boarded the trolley...and off to a few cool stops in Chicgao! We hit Olive Park, LaSalle Street (near the Board of Trade), Michigan Avenue (where the sun started to shine!), and ended in Wrigleyville, going to the rooftop of Murphy's Bleachers and the front of Wrigley Field! YAY!! We were celebraties, having a few people ask to get their picture taken with us! LOL! It was so crazy walking around the city all dressed up...and we were not alone, lots of bridal parties were out that day!! :)
Off to our reception...we couldn't wait...time to party!! We got to eat a few bites of our appetizers before we all were announced. YUM...potato skins and baked mac and cheese...makes me hungry just thinking about them!
No one knew but we had bought jerseys to wear when we were announced...hehe! That was so fun!! The bridal party and parents were introduced to "Dakota" by Stereophonics. Yay! So cool to hear it while we were waiting. It was such a cool moment when we finally were announced....MR. & MRS. SHAWNY MAC!!!!! LOL! The DJ was great, made a re-mix with Red Sox and Cubs songs, then we did a little dance to "Walk of Life" by Dire Straits. So fun!
Next was our first dance..."In Your Eyes" by Peter Gabriel. Awesome. I was doing so GREAT all day...but I got a few tears during our first dance. Loved it...except my MOH (or anyone for that matter) didn't bustle me! Bummer.
Someone finally got me bustled, lol, and next was father-daughter dance! OK...so much for doing so great...I bawled. :P We danced to "Stand By Me" by Ben E. King, because I remember on his weekends (parents are divorced), we'd listen to that soundtrack in his truck. :) Good times good times.
After that we had the blessing, which was done by Shawn's Auntie Sheila on a whim...since Father John had to leave to get back for Mass on Sunday. So sad to see him leave! BUT Auntie Sheila did an amazing job. :) Then we got to eat yummmmmy food...Irish Stew, Chicken, Potatoes, Cabbage, and Bread. OMG...SOOOOO good! It was a hit with everyone!!
After we ate we got up to talk to each table...that was great because we got to see people we didn't get to at the ceremony. Never enough time, but we knew if we took longer we'd still be at the reception right now! It was so overwhelming to see all these people there...for US.
Once we got to talk to everyone, we went back to do the groom's and maid of honor's speeches (Gretchen got the champaign and Shane got the Guinness toast!)...very nice moment!! That's when I wished we had a videographer, but I know the pictures capture the moment.
Time to cut the cupcakes!!!!!! WOhooooo! It was pretty funny how everyone kept asking about them even before dinner! OMG. We definitey made the right decisions...Boston Cream Pie, Pumpkin Spice, Vanilla w/ chocolate frosting, and Chocolate w/ vanilla frosting. YAY! Shawn and I had bigger ones, and we actually fed eachother BOTH!! Too bad we lost them after that...we didn't even get to finish. :(
Time to mingle and DANCE!! We did the bridal party dance to "I Gotta Feeling" to start the night off! And honestly...we didn't look back...we danced the night away! We had a few shout-outs (one to Lobster, one to my step-dad - "She's A Lady")...it was great! We all had an amazing time, and we heard awesome feedback from everyone.....I wish the night didn't have to end!!
Here are a few non-pros of our ceremony from friends and family! :)
We hired a piper, he was AWESOME!
We're MARRIED!! :)
THE BIG DAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Holy &*#(, it's my WEDDING DAY!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yeah, it's crazy...how did it get here so fast!??! :P
So the morning of my wedding day, I woke up at 6am...probably only sleeping for 3 hours! Gretchen thankfully stayed with me that night. I hopped in the shower, watched the Weather Channel and tried to eat a little breakfast before the nail lady showed up at 8am. I remember being in the shower, just trying to breathe and let everything sink in!
8am the nail lady showed up, and let's just say she was my least favorite vendor. New Age music and NO option for French manicure!? WTF?! :( SO sad about that...but oh well. The hair and makeup girls were AMAZING and I can't say it enough! I love those gals!! Thanks, Appease!!!!
My Mom and my BM Kari were the only two who got their makeup and hair done with me. Gretchen was there for most of the getting-ready, and Grandma Linda came in to take a few photos since our photographer was just meeting us at the church. Kathryn came in to hang with us for a while...then Annie came in later, and Anna was the last one to show up.
The morning was pretty much a blur...except for us watching and praying over the Weather Channel. The stress from the 70% chance of thunderstorms was starting to lessen...even though it was raining, all we could do now is enjoy it and embrass it, right?! :/
I got my dress on with the help of my fabulous girls, especially Anna who was the one who watched the dress shop do it for me at my last fitting! The only moment I almost cried was when I got a glimpse of myself in the mirror...talk about SURREAL. Who the heck is that!?!? oh my GOD it's ME...wearing a wedding dress...going to get MARRIED!!!!
We were only 5 minutes late getting downstairs, which was awesome for me because I am usually 15 minutes before schedule and make everyone wait! Ha! We decided to just take cabs since it was raining.
WOW. Coming downstairs was again a surreal moment. Seeing everyone all dressed up, waiting for us...totally a crazy vision! Everyone clapped while I stepped outside and people escorted me to the cab, umbrellas in hand! And we're off to the church!
Hm...so....we were still early! Haaaa...oh well, I'd rather be early than late!!! Kari waited with me in the cab until the girls found someone to unlock the side door. It was still sprinkling so we ran into the church! Only 40 minutes until I walked down the aisle...what should we do until then!? Oh wait...nothing because it flew by! Maggie came down to meet us, then my Aunt Barb and cousins came down, then my Aunts and Uncle came down, then my step-sisters and step-mom showed up, then...yep, it was nuts! This was when Gretchen and Kari had to help me go to the bathroom...and Gretchen's sister opened the door on us...luckily she couldn't even see me because my dress was up around me and I was facing the other way! LOL! :D
Time to line up...Dad came down and you could tell he was nervous. ;) It was all so weird...I just went with the flow because it was just so surreal! Yep, I said it again! SURREAL!!!!!!!!!!!
The second time I almost cried was when I walked up the stairs, saw everyone lined up...and heard the beautiful music! The voice, the piano, the violin...gorgeous! My girls turned to smile, and my dad was choking back the tears...wow...I'm getting married!
There goes Shawn's mom...then my step-mom...then my mom...then my girls...and now...it's my turn.
The doors opened, and all I saw was the floor! I looked up for a split second and saw all of our guests turned towards me and my dad, snapping pictures...eeeek! I got SO nervous! I didn't know where to look! I asked my dad, he didn't know either! Eeek!
Whew...we made it to Shawn and Father John! Dad gave my arm to Shawn, and we carefully walked up to the alter...it was an awesome moment to look out on the bridal party and our guests. Again...surreal!!!!
The ceremony was so amazing...Father John calmed me down, and I didn't even cry! WELL, I did tear up a few times, but I'm pretty proud I didn't bawl! Everything went perfect...Pat, Mary Gail and Brendan (our readers!) did awesome...Ave Maria was gorgeous...and our kiss was cute! ha!
Tada!!! We're MARRIED!!!!!!!!!!!!!
First off, I can't believe it's already over! It is NO lie when people say their Big Day just flew by...it's a BLINK of an eye. I'll do my best to recap it all:
I flew out to Chicago on the 16th to take a week to finalize all the little things that still needed to be done. Gretchen and I went through everything to make sure what was sent to her was perfect, then took a look at her dress and the jewelry Diane (a friend of mine from work) made for everyone. It was a nice way to start the Wedding Week. ;)
The next couple of days I took to finish wrapping the bridal party gifts, finish making the "placemats" for the centerpieces, check in with all the vendors, went shopping for a groom's gift, and wait patiently for my fiance to show up! He flew in on the Wednesday before the Big Day, and we still had a few things left to do!
My friend Annie met us at the airport (I took the train there to meet him!) to help bring us to get our marriage license (FINALLY!) and to meet with the photographer. The marriage license was easy - but for some reason I was a little nervous! We didn't take a pic until we got back to Gretchen's. :(
Next was the final meeting with the photographer. Well, this was the third big stress for us (I'll get to the other two soon!). We walked in and saw a brace on our photographer's knee! :O No way...oh please God tell me he's kidding...um yeah...nope. :( Kurt tells us he blew out his ACL during the Chicago Marathon! NOOOOO! He said he was going in to talk to his doctor the next day and would let us know if he'd be able to shoot our wedding. I had a knot in my stomach and just knew he wouldn't be able to. (Needless to say, he wasn't able to do it...but LUCKILY he sent Maggie and Christian - they were AWESOME and I am seriously DYING for the pro pics!!!!!)
Thursday we had a couple of people starting to trickle in, but we still had things to do. That morning we finished our OOT bags and delivered them to the hotel...and while we did that, my AUNT PAT showed up!!! I love her to death, it was so exciting to see her! She flew in from Charlotte, NC. She went off shopping and Shawn and I ate lunch and then we grabbed our bags to move in to the hotel...yay! Later my friend Andy showed up from England! It had been 4 1/2 years since I last saw him so it was very cool and surreal to see him!! Some of Shawn's friends flew in that night, too, so it was a nice relaxing time for us.
Friday...now here's where time started to FLY BY...and I started to get overwhelmed! Annie (a bridesmaid) and I went to do the flowers that morning. We did my bouquet, the BM flowers (single roses), and the Moms coursages. After we got those taken care of, we drove back to the hotel to eat lunch and to finish up the last DIY - the favors/place cards! WOHOOO! EVERYONE seemed to be coming in that day! I had to take a few minutes after lunch to lock myself in the bathroom and chill! Shawn was getting overwhelmed, too! :/ People asking questions that they already should have known; asking where so and so was; etc....just crazy stuff! By the time I showered and got my dress on it was time to leave for the church and rehearsal!
That morning our priest flew in - our first stress was when Old St. Pat's called a few months before the Big Day to let us know the priest we had met with and lined up in Chicago would be out of town. OMG! Seriously!?!? Shawn automatically said it was a sign! He had wanted his priest (Father John) to do our ceremony. WELL, God is good because he was willing to fly out for us! And now, looking back, I can't even imagine our ceremony and Big Day without him!!
The second stress? The weather. I know. It's something we can't control. But the whole week the weather kept saying there was a 70% chance of thunderstorms all day of the wedding day. Say WHAT?!?! We didn't have an outdoor ceremony or anything, but we had big plans for outdoor pictures showing off Chicago! :/ More about the weather in a minute...
So back to the rehearsal. It went well...even though we had a ton of people! It was definitely real after walking up to the alter and realizing the next day I'd become a wife. The coordinator and Father John took control, which was good, because my head was swimming!
After our rehearsal we all headed to Murphy's Bleachers for a low-key, relaxing dinner. (It's where we met and got engaged, only fitting right!?) It was so great to have everyone there! I wish everyone would have mingled more, but what can you do. :/ Anyway, the funniest thing was the main bar was giving away tickets to the Bears-Patriots game being played in December...it's funny because half of our guests live in New England and the other half are from IL! :)
My bridesmaids made me leave...and some of the guests stayed to do karaoke. So yeah, I was jealous about that, but happy I left because Gretchen, Kari and I ended up bringing the favors/place cards to the reception spot - and we got to see the place all set up, which I did NOT think I'd get to see before we set foot in there the next day! Jaime, at Mrs. Murphy & Sons Irish Bistro, had everything ready by the time we got there. She did an AMAZING job...soooo happy with everything!!! We said thanks and drove back to the hotel to TRY and get some sleep...nighty night...