Monday, May 14, 2012

Vacation Day 2 - A Birthday or Two and a Wedding (with about 3 million photos . . .maybe!)

If you are just peeking in today, you can catch up on Day 1 of our vacation before continuing on with the journey on Day 2.

I'm going to warn you right now that this is photo overload - and I even narrowed down the photos to the favorites/most fun.  I took over 400 photos on this day and am sharing about 40 with you :-) 

As I mentioned in Day 1, everyone slept in (some more than others HA!).  At about 11:30 or so, my brother and his boys came to our room.  May 7th happens to my nephew's birthday and he happened to turn 13 - May 7th is also the big wedding day!  I didn't want him to feel left out so I had brought along cupcakes, candles, birthday hats and gifts (we also celebrated Papa's birthday - the boys had been waiting to sing happy birthday to him for weeks!).

 The boys LOVED the balcony.  It was fun to watch them interact and just enjoy the nice breeze that was blowing in the morning.
 Josh picked these cupcakes out from Walmart before we left home - they are Detroit Tigers inspired :-)  Do you know what is super sad about this??  Not one single cupcake every got eaten!  We sang happy birthday to Seth and Papa and then went right out to lunch - the afternoon ended up being packed full and we didn't get back until after 11:00 that night . . .then we all left the next morning!  I hope housekeeping enjoyed them :-)
The birthday boy!  (He HATES having photos taken!)  Seth got to pick where we went to lunch . . .well he didn't want to so his brother picked for him. . .and we all headed to Red Lobster (YUM!)  Braedon and Seth would not wear birthday hats but both Josh and Nate did . .. one of the waitress' at the restaurant even took a lobster out of the tank for the boys to "pet". 

My sister-in-law, Lynnette, was in charge of the decorations for the reception and met us at the restaurant . . .at which time Darryl and I found out that she needed our help.  Of course, we are always willing to help (in other words, we weren't about to tell her no - if she needed help, we wanted to be there for her!).  Our original plans for the afternoon had been to go swimming, give the boys baths and get to the wedding about 30 minutes early.  Instead, we went back to the room, gave the boys baths, got ready and left to help set-up.  We were very thankful for my parents willingness to get the boys ready and bring them to the wedding for us. 

The rest of the day was the wedding so I'm just going to post pictures - some will have explanation, some won't :-)

 These are my two wonderful nephews, Braedon and Seth - they are becoming fabulous young men whom I am very proud of!
 Sadly, I did not get any photos of the reception decor - we were rushing to get it done and it was hot and humid.  The photo above shows the mason jars with flowers that were hung on the ends of the aisle though :-) Yes, the wedding was outdoors and I can say that by the time the wedding started there was a beautiful breeze blowing, the sun was shining and it was the perfect day for a wedding. The wedding and reception were held at Polen Farm in Kettering, OH and I can see why Alicia fell in love with this place when she saw it the first time.

 Don't you just love those little ties??  I think that you are seeing a sneak peak of next years Easter Outfits (And seriously, I think I will rent them from Men's Warehouse - they are like $5.00 each and considering the fact that they wouldn't wear them again - it might be cheaper!)
 Alicia's dress was beautiful and very unique.  It had the appearance of a wrap around and just flowed perfectly.  She looked beautiful!

 The boys were more than a little unsure about their flowers (which were almost bigger than they were!) 
 My brother Jeff and his son Brandon.  Brandon graciously video taped the wedding at the last minute. 
 My cute little ring bearer's before the wedding, dancing on the gazebo to the music.  I could not get a photo of both of them looking at me for anything!
 The beautiful flower girl - my niece Kate!!! 
My brother Jeff and his wife Nora :-)  (You may remember that she was diagnosed with lung cancer a few years ago - doesn't she look fabulous??? She is doing wonderfully well!)
 My sister-in-law Lynnette and her two boys, Seth and Braedon (My brother is the pastor doing the wedding)
 I love this photo - the girl in the back is my niece-in-law, Erin.  I love the softness of this photo.  Erin is a worker and a giver - she steps right in where ever help is needed and is not afraid of taking on any task.  She is a wonderful person!!
 The wedding begins - my brother and Alex, the groom. 
 This is my nephew Micah escorting one of the bridesmaids.
 My niece, Marisa - the maid of honor - and the best man, Clay.

 Don't you love them??? Here's the deal.  We didn't practice with the pillow on Sunday evening but had practiced with the boys holding hands.  The pillow kinda threw things off at the wedding because Nate had no one to keep him from getting distracted :-)  When Josh got to me, he said "Look mom - a pillow, you can have it" :-) 
 My brother, Kel, and the bride - don't you love this photo - it shows TRUE happiness! 
 Nate wanted to sit by the boys so he sat on the floor in front of my nephews :-)

 Very proud grandparents and very proud parents :-)
 This is one of my personal favorite photos.  It is during the ring ceremony - I love the blurred photo with the flowers in focus. 
 With the wedding being outside, they did not do a unity candle but instead did the unity sands.  Such a great memento from the wedding.

And this is my "money shot" - I knew it when I took it - this is the one I'll be putting on my wall :-)

 Yep, this is the whole family.  I had to had to hand my camera off to someone else and they took the shot at an angle meaning that most of the faces are hidden.  I'm hoping the photographer got a better shot - I want one for my wall!!

 Darryl kept the boys entertained outside the reception hall (it was in a beautiful old barn - such a cool place).  Remember I said how beautiful the weather was for the wedding?  Once the wedding was done, the clouds started to roll in and pretty soon the rain came in huge sheets.  The timing was perfect because we were all indoors!
 My sister-in-law Nora and my niece Brittany :-)
 I think Josh was getting very animated because he could hear thunder - which he doesn't like!
 The pouchy lip - I think Nate was told by either myself or Darryl to stop running . . .he doesn't like to be told no :-)
 My brother Kel and his wife Debby.
The first dance between the new couple :-)
 My brother Kel dancing the Father/Daughter dance with my niece.  While photos were being done between the wedding and reception my sister-in-law Lynnette was outside with my brother trying to teach him how to dance HA! I need to say again how thankful we were for my parents being there to help.  My brother Ken and his family had to leave early to head home so someone had to gather all of the stuff that my sister-in-law had brought to decorate.  My parents graciously took the boys back to the hotel (I really think they were ready to go too!) and my husband and I stayed until the end to help tear down. 
Last but not least - brothers :-)  My nephews Kaleb (he's married to Erin who I mentioned above) and Micah :-)

It really was a beautiful day.  I wish that I could have gotten a photo of the boys with the bride and groom and also with us and the grandparents but it wasn't meant to be.  I also wish I had gotten a photo of the boys with the whole wedding party but I didn't realize that they were taking so many more photos after the wedding . . .oh well.  I have some great photos that I'm proud of   - next time there is a family wedding I'll be more pushy with getting family centered photos HA!

Day 3 of vacation will post on Wednesday - tomorrow will be a great "Too Cute Not to Toot" post :-)