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The morning of the wedding as a little chaotic, so I guess it is a good thing I woke up early. I got a phone call from my mom around 7:30 am. There had been a slight snafu with some of the linens from the rental company. They were the right color, but the wrong length. ARGH

In case you can’t tell … the ivory overlay is longer than the blue tablecloth. Yea, that is not how it had been planned. I made a call to the rental company, but those are the largest royal blue rounds they have. I had been given the wrong dimensions since day one when I reserved them. Not much we could do at this point. The overlays had been purchased, not rented so we couldn’t just swap out for smaller ivory overlays. We also couldn’t just take off the ivory, because the napkins were royal blue. It was a minor snafu and I didn’t hear a complaint from a single guest, so I guess nobody noticed once they sat down. I was running on schedule (or so I though). I had to drop Mr. B off at my parent’s house, since his car had broken down on Thursday. I took a minute to check in with my fabulous friends setting up the tables, then took off to go pick up MOH.

I am SO thankful for my girls that did all the set up while I was off getting pretty. It was over 100 degrees that day, and most of the set up happened when the yard was mostly sunny. I don’t think it would have all got done ANY other way. Here are my girls checking out their hard work on the tables.

Mom got back from her hair appointment and got to work as well putting together our very blue “Family” table. It wasn’t a sweetheart table because the kids sat with us, but it felt silly calling it a head table when it was only the 4 of us and in the center of all the other tables. Mom had rented 4 of the gold chivari chairs for us. I had painted a ‘T’ the royal blue color not knowing that the tablecloth was blue. I should have used the champange gold color instead. See those toasting glasses? Mom had bought us beautiful ones from Pier 1, but they broke in the bag from the store. She found these replacements at the Dollar Tree!

Then she started setting up the food tent.

Then the girls went and helped out:

The yard was looking pretty much like I envisioned by this point. The tables were set, the lanterns were up and if it wasn’t for the sun & wind the girls job would have been done out here.

I was told at a much later date, that the custom labels on the water bottles caused a little bit of trouble. I guess glue and the hot sun don’t mix very well. The labels kept falling off and they girls had to keep re-gluing them on the bottles.

They did a great job getting them all reattached, because I didn’t see any falling off when I got back from getting my hair done.

(all pictures courtesy of my Aunt & Uncle)

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Now that the photographer had arrived and my Dad had changed his clothes, it was time to get this show on the road. Mr. B was still not in the mood to rehearsal, but rehearse we did.

The DOC arranged us at the arch (I really should have worn my spanx – oh well)
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I had forgot to bring my rehearsal bouquet from my shower, and used a single sunflower instead. I tried to cheer Miss G up by letting her hold it.
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We practiced how to stand during the Sand ceremony, and Mr. B made sure he had the shade of blue he wanted.
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Then we practiced the end of the ceremony and how we would be standing for when he pronounced us man & wife. Mr B and I seem to be really concentrating on something the Pastor is saying. Miss G is starting to wilt again and Little A is just in his own little world LOL
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At this point the Pastor had given the “You may now kiss your bride” but Mr. B joked around and we shook hands instead.
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Then the DOC had us walk out and get in place to walk in. Doing this part in reverse seemed to work really well. Everyone knew where they were supposed to be when the walked in. I would recommend it for anyone else not sure how to run their rehearsal.

Little A & Miss G walked out:
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Mr. B & I walked out:
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Once we all got to our starting positions the DOC had us start from the beginning. Because I had chosen to walk out by myself, my parent’s walked out together:
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Mr B took his place with the Pastor
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Little A entered, with Miss G’s pomader instead of his ring flower LOL
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A tired Miss G entered empty handed
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Then I made my entrance. I thought this moment would be awkward, but it really wasn’t.
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Our honored guests looked on as we rehearsed, anxious for food I am sure!
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I have very few pictures of the rest of the evening. The kids got in to pool, Dad went into the kitchen to finish up our BBQ dinner (Ribs, baked beans, corn on the cob) and my DOC, MOH and I rushed to finish the seating labels for the water bottles. Looking back I REALLY wish that I had thrown out that project since it wasn’t working, but I was determined LOL.

I do have a picture of my dad’s cousin and Mr B taking a break in one of the seating areas!
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Honestly, there was still so many little details to finish that my mind was swirling. The lights in the paper lanterns were flickering. I hadn’t made my bouquet. I still hadn’t picked up the Seating Chart sign from Staples. I also had not done laundry all week or packed a bag for myself and the kids for the wedding night. To top it off Mr. B’s car had broke down and he was having to borrow vehicles and rely on others to help him get his last minute details done.

I had been making myself lists all week, but I kept forgetting to put things on the lists. I think that is one of the downfalls of being a DIY bride and having a DIY family. There just isn’t anyone else to call to get the job done, so you have to get it done.

When I got home, my mind was still swirling and I had a hard time falling asleep. I think I played Bejewelled on Facebook until almost midnight!

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(these are actual “Pro Photos” on my wedding disc … don’t ask me why)
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Since this is the official beginning of the recaps, and not the prep work I decided on a new name for this series of posts. “Home is Where the Heart Is” seemed like a perfect fit with our wedding taking place at my parent’s home. Don’t you think?

I had been on the fence about needing to have a rehearsal. Mr. B was a firm “No” He didn’t think there was anything we needed to practice. My Mom had been the original one to suggest a rehearsal, so she was in the “Yes” camp. The DOC made the final decision, we needed to have one. She didn’t want any surprises or snafus on the wedding day.

We planned to start right at 6pm, since that is when the ceremony would be starting on Saturday. We had been working around the house on last minute projects so when my MOH arrived with the kids I was surprised it was time to get ready.

The DJ (MOH’s Husband) started setting up the sound system.
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The ceremony musicians got warmed up
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The minister made some final notes
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BUT Miss G was running out of steam (and so was I if you look at my face).
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I don’t blame her. She had picture day at school that morning, then she went to after-school care. We she got to Grandma’s she was thrown right into more activity. Grandma gave her a pep talk and that seemed to help:amber&billDSC_8282

Now all we had to do was wait for Grandpa to change and for the photographer to arrive so we could get this show on the road.

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One of the other little touches that I had seen at other home/backyard/outdoor weddings was little seating areas. Mom already had a few areas around the yard, we just moved them around and gave them a “face lift” for the wedding.

Area #1
This is a nice little area right behind where we had the ceremony. It is next to the mom made beach. Mom got some new cushions and Mr. B washed away the cobwebs and put up new lights.

Area #2
These chairs and table usually sit up on the deck, by the TV on the porch. This was right where the ceremony would be and where the bar was going to be set up during the reception. Mom bought new cover and pillows for the chairs and moved the area onto the grass. We picked this location so that the guests would not try to walk off the pathway and end up falling.

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Countdown: Flower Friday

Well we have made it all the way to Friday morning! The day before the wedding and the day of the rehearsal. There was still SO much to do … even after all the work we had been doing. My main focus was the DIY flowers. I had 160 sunflowers that we needed to arrange into a bouquet, 11 centerpieces (5 high and 6 low) and about a dozen mason jars.

I don’t have a lot of pictures because I had my hands full of flowers. It was messy! Lots of water, cut off stems, bits of floral tape littered my mom’s nice new kitchen. I helped with all the high centerpieces and I think they turned out beautifully.

I am not so sure what went wrong with the low centerpieces. The oasis we bought didn’t seem to hold the flowers the way the styrofoam had during the trial mom and I did. They held up ok for the wedding, but it was definitely not as nice as the trial centerpiece had looked. In hind sight I wish I had just scrapped the idea of the low centerpiece and made them all taller. Oh well … hindsight is 20/20 right?

What I did not get done on Friday was my bouquet. I really wish that I would have taken the time to get it done before the rehearsal. Time just slipped right thru my fingers. My mom and SIL ended up making it the morning of the wedding. They did a beautiful job, but mom hadn’t seen me make the trial bouquet and my SIL never saw it at all. Looking at some of the pictures I can see the flaws, but I am positive nobody else did. I guess that is just part of my control freak nature. I wanted to do it all.

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I had read MANY blogs about outdoor, backyard, home and park weddings. One thing that I knew would be key was lighting. My parent’s and I had discussed different ideas over the last 6 months. Now it was time to put those plans into practice. The first area to get lights was the patio. It got a simple strand of white Christmas lights along the edge. These went up the weekend before the wedding.

After the tents were up on Thursday and the sun had come up the guys started lighting the inside of the tents. Again, they are just white Christmas lights that we already owned.

Next to go up with the chinese lanterns with the throwies that I had made. This DIY project got a little assistance from my Dad and his Cousin (the electrician) They wanted to use cable to put up the lanterns, but mom & I held firm to the fishing line. They did have to make some adjustments to my throwies though. The first time they put them up we didn’t get a lot of light from them.

So the next morning while my Dad was out doing some last minute errands they went and bought some clothespins to help hold the LED wires onto the battery so they would have a stronger connection. This worked much better than my tape, I will admit. The night of the wedding they had the perfect glow:

(You can see the blue glow in the lanterns AND the lighting in the tents in this photo)

The last minute addition to the lighting was actually because some of the lanterns didn’t stay on the fishing line and we didn’t have time to put them back up. They used some of the taller shepard hooks and attached the lanterns to them and just rearranged the mason jars on the other hooks.

The only lighting that didn’t happen was my luminaries. We had purchased white paper bags and they were supposed to line the driveway/walkway from the parking area up to the house. It was probably needed, but with the slightly windy conditions it was making set up difficult, so they did not get set out. Now I have about 500 white paper bags for all future birthday parties, class parties and probably even Christmas LOL.

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