Wedding of The Year

**Many photos are those of my friends and family; all photos can be clicked on to enlarge; this post is very long**

The last few days have been a blur.  I’m not eternally grateful that we got a videographer because everything went by so unbelievably fast.  They don’t lie when they say that it’s gone in the blink of an eye.  Absolutely unreal.

My cousins all want me to get married every year because the party was so amazing.  They said, “It can be to the same girl, just have a party like this every year.”  There literally wasn’t a dry eye in the house.  It was amazing.

Everything started Wednesday.  We had family and friends coming in, and Alex and I ran around to do some errands.  Thursday was the same way, except we absolutely had to be done by 5:30pm because we had to get to our rehearsal.  Our venue was amazing.  The two women who are in charge are fantastic.  They take care of everything.  When everyone got to the venue, they set us up outside and then we practiced walking in and then walking out.

I made sure to wear my shoes so that I could break them in some.  My feet are a half a size different, so they fixed one of them to fit me better by shoving some stuff down in the bottom of it.  At one point, we were waiting outside on the path and my foot slipped into a crack between two stones…  I rolled my ankle and in the process of falling, grabbed one of my bridesmaid’s (Amy 3) breast.  We’re not talking a slight gracing of a grab…. This was a full on complete and total… directly to second base… kind of grab.  I ended up just laughing into her shoulder.

She kept asking me if I was okay.

I wasn’t allowed to walk without an escort after that.

We went over the ceremony, practiced with the minister with the handfasting cords, and then he said, “I now pronounce you Mister and Missus Kelly and Erin H****-H****.”  Everyone looked at him, except me, because I’m the only who didn’t catch it.  We all got a good laugh and then he underlined it a couple times in the reading.

After that, we went to the rehearsal dinner.  It was at my parents’ clubhouse, and my mom hired a lifeguard to watch all the kids so the parents could have fun and the kids could swim.  The food was amazing, and it was great to see all of our family and friends there that night.  I went back and forth between going to my parents’ house for the night or going home with Erin and friends.  I ultimately chose to go home with my friends.  My sister, even though she flew in from Japan, was coming back in December, and there is no telling the next time I would see some of my long time friends again.

I don’t have any pictures from the rehearsal dinner because I was too busy enjoying the time and letting everyone else deal with getting pictures.  My mom hasn’t given me a copy of them all yet, but I know they’re coming to me soon, so I’ll make sure that I get that posted then.

I spent the night playing games with friends and having a few drinks before crashing.

And like I have the last few nights in a row, waking up well before my alarm goes off.

The next morning involved me showering with a shower cap to protect my pre-treated hair, which was an interesting experience.

I specifically worked out our time for getting up because I knew that SCOTUS was going to issue their opinion on same-sex marriage that morning.  It was the same day that Lawrence was ruled on in 2003 and the same day that Windsor was ruled on in 2013.  And why else would that have added this day to their opinion days?  I knew that I was going to be getting married on the single gay-est day of the year, and I made sure to put all my predictions out on Facebook the night before.  I also made sure that I would be on Twitter when it happened.

But I lost track of time, and then I looked down at my phone and saw it blowing up.  I thought, “I know I’m getting married today, but damn…” and then I looked at the time.  10:19AM.

“SHIT!”  I hop on Facebook and it is plastered with hearts made out of all fifty states and “LOVE WINS” and rainbows and celebrating.  “FUCK!”

Erin finally said, “Kel!  What is going on?”

“It’s everywhere!  It’s everywhere!”

“What is?”

“Weddings… marriage… same sex marriage!  The supreme court!”

I then had everyone around me looking at my phone.

BEST WEDDING GIFT EVER!  THANK YOU, SCOTUS!  YOU KNEW EXACTLY WHAT I WANTED!!!

IMG_9473We then went to the bridal party luncheon that my aunt threw for Erin and I.  We got everyone in our bridal party a gift, which included a mug of some sort and some jewelry or other trinket (obviously the guys didn’t get jewelry).  Everyone was gushing over their gifts, so we felt pretty good about our gift buying abilities.  I IMG_9408think my favorites were the mug I got for Alex which had a lot of the famous gay people coming out of closets when it comes in contact with hot liquids… and Amy’s mug that was an owl.  I feel like those were made specifically for them, but I feel like everyone’s gifts reflected their personalities a lot too.

IMG_9466It was great to see all the ladies (and bridesmen) in one place.  My dad took the other guys out for pizza, beer, and games.  He invited my sister-in-law’s (I love saying that) husband as well, and they told us that they really had a good time.  My dad definitely knows how to entertain.

The menu was wonderful.  The flowers were amazing.  My friend Tara was in from California, which was wonderful as well.

We left straight from the bridal party luncheon and went straight to the venue to start getting ready.  We have a lot of bridesmaids and brides who needed hair and makeup done and the photographers were showing up at 3pm, so we wanted to make sure that we were ready when they got there.

IMG_9478Ashley, my friend from high school and our hairdresser for the event, beat us there.  She started working on me right away, then the girls in my party, before moving into the next room to workIMG_9479 on Erin.  She worked her tail off to get us all ready.

I tried really hard not to let things like….

 

  • Not knowing if the photographer was there….
  • Who our videographer was….
  • Things going towards my eyes…
  • Alex’s tux not making it from my parents’ house…
  • The car paint going MIA…
  • The weather report flipping between 0%, 20%, 60% chances of rain somewhere between immediate and midnight.

IMG_9485IMG_9484The dressing room was really pretty and had lots of extra space.  At that point, Erin and I were separated.  Once we started the getting ready process, they all worked to make sure we didn’t see each other.  My group hung their plum dresses and started getting ready immediately.  Apparently, Erin’s side hung out and drank.  Why didn’t we get any alcohol?  Not fair!

In order of pictures, we have my sister Rachael (the maid of honor), Amy 3 and Alex (bridesmaid and bestman), Amanda (bridesmaid), Lindsay and Amy 2 (my bridesmaid and Erin’s bridesmaid, respectfully), and Ashley (our hairdresser).

Once we finished getting ready, the photographer came in and took some “formal” pictures of us getting ready.  What this means is, we faked it all.  He said it makes the pictures look better and rather than having serious and focused faces, we have smiling and happy faces.  But this didn’t stop us from getting other photos of us getting ready that weren’t faked:

After we were both ready, the photographers did what is called a first look shot.  They took me out and hid me in a building outside.  Then, they placed Erin with her back towards me facing the fountain.  Then, they counted to three, opened the doors and there she was… the single most stunning and beautiful woman I had every laid eyes one… my very soon to be wife.

I immediately started crying.

All of our wedding party was screaming at me through the glass door, “DON’T DO IT! DON’T DO IT!”

I walked towards her, and the photographer told me to stop, they took pictures and then they had Erin turn around.  I cried, she cried… I was so overwhelmed with how amazing she looked.  We had a moment and just hugged and kissed and laughed.  Then we got the rest of our bridal party photos done.

At one point, Stephen (the photographer, who doesn’t like being called “the photographer”) called us “Karen and Ellie.”  We’ve decided our celebrity name will be Karen… and we laughed, and then he did it again.  He was fantastic, so funny and knowledgeable.

We don’t have a lot of photos right now of these shots because the pictures haven’t come back yet, but we should have them soon, or at least some of them soon.

We then got ushered into the waiting room while people started to show up…. and then it happened…

The moment I’d been dreading.

Amanda walked into the dressing room, and curious about how many people were here, I asked Amanda, “How does it look?”

She shook her head, “It’s bad.”

That’s when I realized we were talking about the same thing.  I was talking about people.

She was talking about rain.

It was raining, and not only that, it was pouring.  I looked over at Erin when my mom and Karen, the planner, walked in.  They gave us the option of waiting 15 minutes or calling it.  We waiting, but then quickly realized by looking at the radar that it was getting worse before it got better.  We ended up sneaking out the back after everyone made a wall to block us from being seen so that we could sneak a peak out the back….

Erin, extremely disappointed, agreed to make the call to move the wedding inside.  They put us back in the room, got everyone seated, and got the party started.  We walked out to Yes to Love by Stefano, and the timing was perfect.  We gave our parents gifts of thanks, said our vows, got tied together (literally), kissed, and danced out to C’mon N’ Ride It by Quad City DJ’s.

We got family photos, ate, thanked people, cut the cake, and then something wonderful happened…

It stopped raining.  We got everyone outside, gave the sparklers, lit them up and did a fake exit.  We took what is called a “love shot” where Stephen spells out the word love with a sparkler to make it look like the word love is coming from our sparkler that I was holding.  It was a fantastic shot.  I can’t wait to show you how it came out because he showed it to us immediately after it was taken and it looks amazing.  It’s definitely NOT photoshopped.

We then came back inside, did the bouquet toss, and then started getting down and dancing until midnight!  It was the most perfect and amazing night.

People were telling us right and left about how wonderful the whole event was, how great the food was, fantastic the DJ was, etc.  We definitely struck it right.  People kept saying it was the best wedding they’d ever been to.  So. Freaking. Amazing.

After the wedding, Erin and I went to the Marriott for the night.  Our friends had decorated our cars, and I don’t have photos of the details on those, but I’ll get them.  They painted “Just married” and “brides squared = love” and “Love wins” and drew hearts and all kinds of other things.  It was really cute.

However, when we woke up the next morning, we woke up to this:

I will never understand why people think those things change minds.

Really?  Like we’re going to see this and think, “Holy shit, you know what?  They’re right!  This is a huge mistake!  We shouldn’t be gay.”

How angry and hateful… how disgusted does someone have to be… to take time out of their day to do this to someone else’s property?  I mean… really… this was done from anger and hate… it didn’t come from a place of love… it’s so unfortunate.

We got to my parents’ house for the Saturday morning brunch, and my sister’s friend said, “wow, that’s some first wedding gift.”

I replied, “I think the SCOTUS opinion was the first wedding gift… and I think that one wins.”

I Can’t Believe It’s FINALLY Here!

It is technically Thursday at this point. The last few days have been rather crazy. I’ve spent a lot of time running around and getting stuff done with Alex. 

We had to get car paint, wedding sparklers, picture frames, and a bunch of other stuff. I took Alex to the tuxedo place to try his on and he looks soooo good! I am so excited!

Today is the rehearsal at 5:30pm followed by the rehearsal dinner. We are filling out all the paper work for tomorrow and we’re going to bring the cords to practice tying them. 

People have started showing up today and yesterday. Kenny and Jason came in from Michigan today. They’re staying with us as well. Most everyone else comes in tomorrow. 

At this point, I’m past trying to stress details. I’m just ready to get married, party, and go on our two-week honeymoon. My mom is taking care of the fans and the water bottles for the ceremony.  

The only problem right now? The weather. It’s on the fence. I’m hoping it pushes back, but the reports keep going back and forth. Luckily, our venue has a beautiful indoor back up plan if it rains, but hopefully it won’t. 

My. Brain. Is. Fried. I can’t even begin to explain how wonderful it was to just cook dinner and have a drink with Erin and our friends tonight. It was amazing. 

Erin’s car goes in for an oil change at 8:30 in the morning. We have to finish shopping, I need to practice my dance with my dad, Erin’s family is getting into town, we need to wrap presents, Erin needs to buy presents, we need to finish our hand fasting cords, and then we have the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner. 

Shit’s getting real, y’all. Shit. Is. Getting. Real!!!!

Four Days and a Birthday

Today is Erin’s birthday. She’s 29 years old today. I’ve worked really hard to give her the best birthday ever this year since my graduate classes made me miss the last two. 

I threw her a surprise party with church friends on Friday. I am so happy to have friends at the church that are our age and that we can relate to on a spiritual level. It has been a wonderful experience. 

Today, I surprised Erin with a brand new bike of her choice. We were in the process of picking out the bike and her friend Jenn from NC walks up. I’d arranged for Erin to get her bike and then take it out trail riding with Jenn. She said she’d had a blast going over one of the harder trails in the area. Then I made crab cake Benedict for dinner. I made the Hollendaise sauce from scratch. It was pretty fantastic if I do say so myself. 

Tonight, we’re going to go out to a Thai restaurant of her choice and Alex is helping me with one final surprise. :) I’m so excited. I have had so much fun planning out this weekend. 

Next week is crunch time on the wedding though. I need to:

  • Put stickers on the votive holders
  • Put stickers on the bubbles
  • Wrap votives and votive holders 
  • Create table signs 
  • Give seating chart to mom
  • Determine entrance song timing (we’re dancing in, and it will be taped so I will post it!)
  • Create fans
  • Buy cards and gift cards for parents
  • Wrap bridal party gifts
  • Make sure Erin has her new earrings 
  • We still need some gifts for Erin’s side

And to top it all off, I need to do three weeks of lesson plans for church because we won’t be there for two weeks. I also need to take the background check for our new teacher to the church for processing. 

Tomorrow will be busy, but thank the Gods that I have Alex here to help me while Erin is at work and that Er n is out of school to help when she gets home!!!

FOUR DAYS!

Six Days

We’re in single digits. 

My sister will be in town for a week from Japan later today. 

I picked up my best man, Alex, from the train station this week, and we’ve been catching up. He met Erin for the first time this week and later told me that I’d “got a good one this time.”

We had our final meeting with the venue today. We spent almost two hours going over wedding party placements, final numbers (125), and what time everything will be going on. 

Wedding ceremony is at 7 pm and the DJ will be having us party until midnight. My mom paid the remaining balance on the venue today and I saw the bill for the venue (including having the planner, catering, decorations, and floral): $11,450.

And that number doesn’t include the DJ, photographers, Videographer, cake, our dresses, gifts… Holy shit. 125 is a lot. And expensive! I had no idea before today just how much everything was going to cost. 

In other news, our church has a once monthly meeting of all the young adults: 21 to 30’s-ish. Tonight, I helped turn it into a surprise party for Erin. Her birthday is on Monday, so we started celebrations early. Some of her friends from NC and work came, so it was awesome. She was so surprised and happy. I’m glad I got to give her a good night. I have pictures, just not on my phone yet, so I will have to figure that out tomorrow. 

I love having a spiritual community that is growing and has a group of younger people that we can hold fellowship with. We didn’t get that at the UU in town… And the other was too far to drive too on a regular basis. 

We might also be in the early stages of starting up a pagan group there, but I need to get the middle school program up and running first. And Wednesday night youth program too.  So so so so much to do. First, though, I’m getting married and going on a fabulous honeymoon for two weeks. 

Six days!

Wide Awake

It’s almost three in the morning, and I am wide awake in bed. 

Today was insanely busy, and I still didn’t get everything done. Hopefully I will accomplish more or the rest of my list tomorrow. 

I had my hair trial this morning at ten, and it took almost two hours because my hair dresser, who’s a good friend of mine, was like, “Kel, what do you want to do with your hair.”

And I said, “Ashley, I don’t know. Make it look good.”

She did an up-do, which neither of us were that fond of, so she changed it to a half up/half down, which is what we’re going with. 

I then walked around for the rest of the day with wedding hair and sent her updates on how well it was holding up. 

After that, I went by the school to pick something up for a coworker who lives an hour away but will be at the wedding, and then to my parents’ house to print something for a friend. If you read my other blog, then you know about my friend’s friend’s suicide (and if you don’t and want to, I can send you the link, just comment with your e-mail here). Her family is looking at pressing charges… Possibly negligent homicide or involuntary manslaughter, and the stuff was for the lawyers. 

I then came home to a busted AC. It has frozen up four times in the last month. I have reinsulated it twice in the last year, so this time… We cut it off, put a fan on the ferrets to prevent heat stroke, and called a heating and air company. We can’t have it breaking down with five people coming over and staying in the next two weeks… Or have it break down with our house sitter while we are on our honeymoon for two weeks. 

On that note, my brother from another mother (and father for that matter, so not a blood brother at all) and bestman, Alex, is getting on a train tomorrow morning (really this morning, in eight hours) at 10am to come stay here for two weeks. I get the lovely job of picking his ass up at the train station at 5 in the morning Wednesday. 

My sister gets on a plane in Japan in three days, making her get home for a week in four days. I miss her like crazy and can’t wait to spend time with her while she’s here. The next time that I will see her will be at Christmas. 

I’m not really sure what the full plans, if any, are, but my mom mentioned maybe going on a cruise with the whole family, us included, for Christmas this year. That would be so much fun. Two cruises in one year? Sign me up!

Ten days!

13 Days

We’re getting closer and closer and closer. 

Erin and I did the seating chart today, and I would post pictures, but I’d rather not have all 125 people’s names out there like that. 

We cut sticky notes in half, wrote everyone’s name on them and then put them up on a giant sheet of paper Erin got for us from my classroom. I called my mom and between the three of us, we managed to knock it out pretty quickly. I took some pictures in case something happens.

It looks like we’re going to be right at 125, which will end up costing around $8,300 in catering. Not to mention alcohol. Have I mentioned lately that I love my parents and feel so blessed that they are willing and able to support us like this? I mean… Damn. 

We’re debating on what to call the tables. I don’t particularly want to number them, so I was thinking that maybe we could name them different shades of green and purple…

So we would have people a tables 1, 2, 3, etc…. Or we could do lilac, lavender, plum, emerald, forest, etc… Erin just threw out flowers as a suggestion (rose, orchid, tulip, etc)…

I’d love to do Harry Potter spells, but that may be too much. Haha. Erin said, “Your mom will have kittens.”

We have a meeting at the venue on Friday to give final numbers and figure out the last bit of things we need to figure out.

I brought my dress home with its huge train and almost $2,000 price tag. Have I mentioned how much I appreciate my family??

13 Days. 13 Days. 

In other news, we had a couple friends (Amy3, who is called Amy3 because there are three Amy’s in the wedding so my mom numbered them, and Rachael S, who I met through Amy3 at Ashe’s funeral almost three weeks ago) over and watched the first two episodes of Orange is the New Black. I fixed watermelon daiquiris that I made from fresh watermelon and we ordered pizza.  

We ended up on the porch talking about Ashe and the possible legal implications revolving around her death, we talked about our failed adoption, and we set the record straight on some lies my exes have apparently been spreading about me to Rachael and others. Oh fun. Oh joy. 

Thing is, we’ve been talking more recently. Granted, I’m the one trying to build the bridge by putting forth all the effort, and maybe this is why it’s so one sided. I’d like to give them the benefit of the doubt and say that this was all from months and months ago, but I don’t know. It’s a little disheartening. 

Tori is almost off all her medications, and Eli is stable. He won’t improve to 100% but at least he has his back legs functioning again. Erin made another A in her graduate courses. She’s such a smarty pants. I’m so lucky to be with a nerd like me. 

As soon as she’s more done with her classes and is in summer break, we’re going to go through some of the meditations that I did on the retreat last weekend. I’m excited to share my experiences with her. 

Alex gets here on Wednesday. At 5AM. Ugh. That’ll be a long day. 

I’ve just been thanking the Gods over and over for all our continued blessings and understanding that “hardships” only exist to make us stronger and better. I am so thankful for everything!

13 Days!

The Countdowns

In 30 minutes, it will be…

5 days until Alex gets into town.

7 days until NGU.

8 days until my sister, Rachael, comes home and we celebrate my dad’s birthday/father’s day/Erin’s birthday. 

10 days until Erin’s birthday

14 days until the WEDDING!!!!

And 20 days until the start of our TWO WEEK LONG honeymoon!!

Finding Joy

I had an absolutely fantastic time on Saturday at the retreat with Normandi Ellis.  It went from ten to six, and it was so intense.

We did multiple meditations where we interacted with different Gods, specifically Ma’at, Sakhmet, Anubis, and others.  The best part was where we paired up and traced each other’s bodies.  We then drew different scenarios from our lives on the tracings: triumph, sexuality, creativity, wisdom, grief, etc, and then we wrote about our different parts in our journals.  Then we wrote vows to the Gods all over them before burning them in the fire and releasing our old selves to welcome in the new selves.

I wrote about my grief with my struggles with infertility, and my triumph over my broken heart from past relationships.  I wrote about being a lesbian and being happy and proud to be myself.  I wrote about my faith in the Gods and spending time outside.  I wrote about good things and bad things, and when we burned them, I felt a real, honest release.

I finished up the excercise by saying, “I release all the negativity in my life and give thanks for all the positivity.”

And every since then, while things are still going on around me, I haven’t been able to stop smiling.

I have so much joy in my life right now.  Erin is finishing up her classes for the summer.  Our wedding is in 17 days.  My mom got us a videographer, and my dress is officially at their house.  We’re getting together our bridal party gifts for the luncheon the morning of the wedding.  We’re going to start working on the seating chart this week.  My mom is already starting to work on it, but Erin and I are going to make our own too to compare.

My mom got the tables and chairs rented for the rehearsal dinner and paid for the cake.

17 Days.

17 Days.

Holy Shit, I’m getting married in 17 Days.

I always wanted to get married, but after many years, I wasn’t sure it was ever going to happen… and now it’s going to happen… in 17 days.

Super Excited! Is it Saturday Yet???

Okay, this is going to be a quick blog about something that happened to me today….

It starts about two weeks ago.  Erin and I were at church when another church member comes up to us and says, “Hey, are you the one who taught that class on paganism a couple months ago?”

I said yes.  She told me about this retreat happening in western North Carolina that Normandi Ellis, author of Awakening Osiris, one of my all time favorite books, was putting on.  I got so excited about it and told her I was in.

She said, “Great!  It’s $150.”

Damn.  That’s a lot of money.  I told her I’d make it work and figure it out.  If anything, I’d just take the money out of savings or work up a payment plan or something to make it work.  I contacted Normandi Ellis to see about payment, and she said I could pay in installments.  Then, my friend Amy offered to give me $50 to help me get there as a repayment/gift for everything I’ve helped her with over the last year or two.

That exact day, Yukon got sick.  Then Bentley, Tori and Eli.  And $2,000 later, I’m using the money I was given by Amy to help cover the costs of Eli’s now monthly or so medications that are going to run us $90 a month…  I ended up telling our friend at church that I wasn’t going to be able to go.

And I felt completely crushed by that.  I kept thinking, “I can make this work.  I can find the money to make this work.”  But with vet bills mounting, it wasn’t going to happen.  And we’re saving up for our honeymoon… so it’s just… a lot right now.  And I could use the $150 somewhere else.

I literally cried about it.

Today, Sally, the woman from church, messages me and says, “Would you still be interested in going if someone offered you a scholarship?”

Uhm… DUH? YES!

“Well, I’ve worked it out to give you a scholarship to go to the workshop.”

But I can’t ask you to do that… I didn’t ask you to do that…

“I understand, but this is something I’m feeling led to do.  I feel like you need to be there.  Your energy is going to really help enlighten all of us and the event.”

Oh my gosh… OH MY GOSH… I can’t believe this… Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

I’m going to Normandi Ellis’ workshop on Saturday…. I.  Am.  So.  Freaking. STOKED!!!  I can’t wait!!!!

It’s My Wedding Month!

Welcome to June!  The month of the Kel and Erin wedding.  Wedding festivities have already started to kick off and we’re definitely excited about every step in this process, taking the time to savor every moment and new experience.

This last week and the next couple of days have been extremely exhausting and trying.  Between the death of a young soul in the community and all the animals being sick, it’s been rough.  Elijah, our eldest ferret, goes to the vet for a wellness check up tomorrow.  We’ll see if he’s relatively healthy or if his time has come.  We’ve switched up his diet some, so we’re hoping that it will be a good checkup.

As for the wedding planning… We currently have 118 RSVPs, and I think that number may only go up to 120.  This is a big wedding, and feeding all these people that amount is going to be the biggest cost for us.  I didn’t know this, but food and alcohol costs are nearly half the budget… It’s more than our flowers, photographer, DJ, dresses, and cake… combined.  It’s really insanely expensive.

IMG_9208

IMG_9195This past weekend, my cousin and aunt threw Erin and I a bridal shower.  It was really awesome.  We had BBQ and beans and Mac N’ Cheese.  There were games.  We had Bridal Shower Games.  It was amazing.

It started Saturday at one.  Erin and I were going to wake up and shower and go, but that didn’t end up happening.  We ended up waking up at 8am, having breakfast, watching Star Wars Episode V and just relaxing before getting ready to go.

We got there about 12:30 to IMG_9200check everything out.  There was an area for “Recipes for a Happy Marriage” where people could put their marriage advice.  We got a lot of cute ones, but some of them were absolutely hilarious.

We had drinks, alcoholic and non-alcoholic.  My dad and aunt started the IMG_9205IMG_9204party before we got there, as is traditional in my family, I think.  My dad started telling all kinds of stories about his work and past weddings and us growing up.  He entertained the guys pretty much the entire time.  The girls all sat around and talked about the wedding.  Except that we couldn’t use the words “bride” or “wedding.”

My cousin, who is getting married on September 5th of this year, had a game where we each got three rings and every time we used words with bride/bridal in them or wedding, we lost a ring.  At the end, the person with the most rings would win a prize.  I ended up winning this game. IMG_9209

Like I said, my dad pretty much entertained everyone.  I heard from my friends afterwards that he was hilarious.  At one point, he went outside to see some friends at the pool (this was at the neighborhood clubhouse) and he told them that there was a bridal shower going on in the clubhouse.

His friend asked, “Oh, how do you like you’re future son-in-law?”

He said, “Oh, I’m not gaining a son-in-law… I’m gaining a daughter-in-law.”  It made me smile.

IMG_9201Another game my cousin had going was a “guess that spice game.”  You had to smell the different spiced and try to guess what they were.  I sucked horribly at this one.  My mom ended up winning.  I think she only missed one of them, and it was a weird lemon spice that almost no one had heard of before.  I had no idea.

The last game we had was a “She said… She said…” game where it could be something about me or Erin or both of us.  We weren’t allowed to play this one.  My mom ended up winning this one two, but she gave her prize to the second place winner, which was my ex, Carol.  I found that amusing.IMG_9203

My mom said she probably shouldn’t have played that one, as she thought it was an unfair advantage since she knew me as well as she did and was able to get most of them because of process of elimination.

The decorations were amazing.  My cousin said Pinterest had been a thing at her house the last couple of months while she was planning everything out.  We had a ton of food left over, and I am actually going to head over there after I get off work and pick some leftovers up for dinner tonight.

I think the coolest part of the whole event was what happened while we were opening presents.  We went through all the gifts and then my cousin pulls out one more gift…  She says, “This was a special gift that was sent to me.”

I look at the card that says our names with a heart in between them.  Then Erin says, “Are you serious?”  I look at her and she’s looking at my cousin, who’s grinning from ear to ear.

I say, “What is it?”

Erin says, “That’s my mom’s handwriting.”

I look down at the card, “Really?”

This is a big deal.  Erin’s family hasn’t been 100% supportive of the gay, but her mom has been coming around.  I opened the card and Erin read it aloud.  It was filled with loving words, and ended with “I hope you enjoy this gift that I made for you.”

Inside was two candles, some napkin rings, and handmade napkins and place mats.  They matched our dining room, which she’s never seen.  It was the single most awesome gift we got that day.

The next day, Sunday, was spent at church, shopping, and cleaning.  I taught the morning service and then went to the second service.  We had a guest speaker today and he talked about the Law of Attraction and how if we want or need something, we have to believe that it will come to us as if it already has.  I decided that I wanted to create a vision board, so after service, we went to the veggie stand and then to my parents house where I picked up a cork board from my bedroom.

We went to Costco, took stuff home, and then went to TWO DIFFERENT WALMARTS trying to find two small kiddy pools.  We wanted one for the dogs and one for the ferrets.  We ended up getting a medium one for the dogs and a storage bin for the ferrets.

Our outside spigots don’t work, so we had to buy an indoor hose converter to fill the pool up on the deck. It worked extremely well, so we ended up letting Yukon out into the water that evening before just sitting on the deck and watching the storm roll in.  It was nice.

The ferrets storage bin was filled up with the 50lb back of rice that we picked up at Costco.  It turned into a huge mess, but they loved it so much that it was definitely worth it.

We also got all the supplies that we needed so that I could make laundry detergent again.  The last batch I made was just before THANKSGIVING OF 2013 and it just rain out this week.  This batch should last us until the start of 2017, if not longer.  And it only cost us $30 bucks.

If you’d like the recipe, click here.  But my suggestions would be to get the Zote bars early, cut them up, and let them dry out.  The grating part takes the longest and if they aren’t dry, the shavings will clump together.

Mix the ingredients a little at a time instead of throwing them all into the storage bin at one time.  It will make mixing everything together a lot easier.

The purex bottles make a good laundry detergent holder.  You can use the big bin to store everything and keep smaller amounts in the purex containers.  I have used this for well over a year and it is absolutely fantastic.  I will probably never buy laundry detergent every again.

Here’s a video of the ferrets in their rice pit:

And here’s Yukon and Bentley trying out their new pool:

 

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