Tuesday, January 29, 2013


Yep... they are both married.  And I lived to tell the tale!  Scarlett's wedding is over and all the things I worried would go wrong didn't happen!

Well, I almost burned down the venue, but more on that later.

On to what did happen....

Thursday before the wedding, Corbin and I loaded up the van and the land rover and drove in to the venue to take all the decor, I'd been coordinating.  Things like the glittered lighted trees... (need one anyone?) the candle trees,

the candle holders, the love seat, 

the lighted twig arrangements, the chalkboards

...you know... the stuff....

I know you are thinking the love seat? What's that about.. well, she wanted some loungish furniture in the freight elevator that was the size of a small room.  I talked with a lady who ran a consignment shop in the building. She had high end furniture, and said, yes she'd 'rent' me some for the night.  So we meandered around, selecting some interesting pieces and talked money.  She wanted 20% of the purchase price.  For one night.  AND I had to use her delivery guys.. not my own strong son...okay, so I'm not a math wizard, but good lord.  We were talking a lot of money.  For instance, an interesting bench was $3,000.  20% of that is $600.  for one piece, one night, and lets not figure in what the Chicago moving men would charge.  ugh.

I'm nothing if not resilient, so plan B...

I happened to be at an interesting place searching for something other than what I bought (as always) and noticed a great antique settee.  It was a fraction of the price of the rental, so I bought it.  It fit the bill in the elevator, and now I own it.  Small detail, I have no place for it, so I stuck it in the barn.  Mark raised his eyebrow and suggested firmly that the barn was NOT there for me to fill with great finds.

He's such a kill joy.

But, back to the wedding weekend. We unloaded a ton of stuff, and my FAB wedding planner and I discussed where and what was to be put where. Thank God for Corbin- I told Scarlett she needed to host his wedding, he was such a great help with hers... Anyway, he took off, I headed to pick Mark up at O'Hare and we grabbed the tuxes, which, fit both Mark and Corbin and home to pack.  Is it any wonder I'm still in a state of exhaustion?!

Friday we headed in to Chicago, checked into our room, (which was like a small apartment) at The Palmer House.  The girls were ALL going to get ready in our room and we MIGHT want to host an after party (no not us) so we got a suite.  I like living that way. Ah yeah, who doesn't, right?  Anyway, we changed and headed to the venue for the rehearsal.  Everyone finally got there and we ran through how it was going to happen a couple times and headed off the the dinner.

Dan's mom organized a FAB rehearsal dinner, at a great restaurant Hub 51, with a delish menu.

There was advice from the bride's father?

and a bevy of beauties.

Dan's mom had little tins of M&M's at each place that had the kid's pictures on them and the date and their names (I can't eat them just yet- too cute)

and menu's with a picture.  LOVED the fun food and perfect room- we were kicking off the weekend right.

Headed back to the hotel, where, being the MOTHER, I lectured everyone on getting to bed early and not drinking to much- we needed to hit the ground running on Saturday. Well, Ardith, practice what you preach...

The bar at the hotel was full of people we knew, fun people that came in for the weekend.. we couldn't be inhospitable, could we? Gosh the night was short, and really dark in our shade darkened room when Jessica called the next morning, announcing the hair and makeup crew was 15 minutes from being there.  Mark ordered room service to bring up pots of coffee,

and Blain showed up with bagels.. giving me a hard time that 'someone had to be responsible'.  I'm glad that boy listens to his mother in law.  ;-)

The beautification began.  Seriously, these girls are all gorgeous, I felt like I was back stage at a beauty contest.

Fun time.  Flowers arrived,

bustle was figured out,

accessories were finalized,

handsome little brother checked in...

dresses were donned,  and it was time for the bride to put hers on...

She was stunning.  No tears for this mom, I had fancy makeup too!!

Time for the first look pictures.

Scott, Dan's brother took his best man duties seriously and scouted out the hotel, finding a beautiful ballroom and figuring how to turn on the lights.

 Dan was sequestered in there, looking into a GIANT mirror, waiting for his first look at his bride.  Seriously folks, it was like a movie.

But honestly, is she NOT just beautiful?

They took pictures in the ballroom, and around the Palmer House until the trolley arrived, announcing the importance of the day.

Off they headed out into the city to grab some outside shots.  Did I mention the weather was perfect? Sunny,warm for Chicago in January and dry.  Can.not.wait.to.see.the.professional.pictures.

part two - the wedding - let the fun begin!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

14,13, 12, 11,............................................

We are on the countdown to wedding # 2.  Yes, 2 weeks...that's 14 days or 336 hours and Scarlett and Dan get married.  And I, well, I can then sit around and do nothing.  All my planning and stressing will be over.

Right.... I'm sure something will pop up to worry about, plan and obsess on.... just give me a minute.  Something will come up.

Well, a girl can dream of doing nothing, can't she?

Anyway, Christmas is long over, and put away.  

We had a lovely one though.  Everyone seemed to like what they got, I sure did.  We went to my sister's for Christmas eve, lovely as always.  We all came back here and played a classy game, called Assh*le.  I think they changed the rules whenever it was my turn.  

Mom joined us for gift opening in the morning. It was chaos.  I might need a bigger house for holidays.

Molli got a new Sock Monkey sweater!

I'm not sure she was thrilled.

 We had a late day Christmas dinner here.  I made the blackberry jam cake as always, it's a family tradition.

Mark came through with some FAB gifts as usual - I always say, he gets major brownie points for good gift giving.  What's NOT to love about a man who will shop at Anthropologie and Henri Bendel?

We got great gifts from our kids, they shouldn't spend their money on us... but since they insist .... Jess and Blain made us a wonderful wedding book, from their wedding, AND they gave me the Barbra book  'Hello Gorgeous'.  (say with a Brooklyn accent please)

Scarlett and Dan gave us Apple TV- we are loving it.  Gives us something to watch- we were on a Dexter marathon.  A little serial killer is always a good stress reliever- right? Ah yeah...

Corbin and Ally orchestrated pictures of all 6 kids and all 5 dogs!!  There are great pictures, and the out takes are pretty darn funny... imagine trying to get 6 people and 5 dogs to sit still and look at the camera, and not have anyone with a wonky look on their face. Not an easy task.  And to keep all dogs in various sizes from miniature to REALLY big from attacking one another!! Actually they all get on really well. The giant ones are gentle, and the sassy ones keep a respected distance!

Here's a small sampling...

I also got one of each couple and their furry babies... Molli and Jet were sporting sweaters, of course.

And here's Clemmie (just so she doesn't feel left out)... in one of her new couch beds, sporting her Christmas dress.

So, with the holiday behind us and SO much to do in front of us... I've managed to stay fairly sane.

I said fairly.

Scarlett had her final fitting this week, everything went well with that.  She is just beautiful.  We decided on a wrap for her.. hopefully it won't be 30 below zero that day.  We finalized what the flowers are going to be...nothing mundane, remember who we are dealing with here. Donna, my talented floral friend and I pow wowed the other day on decor... I think we've got a game plan. I've been a wee bit into spray glitter, and might have inadvertently sprayed my face.  Gave new meaning to the word sparkly.  I have more spraying to do, perhaps I should don a bee keepers hat whilst spraying.  I've been using the new barn for this.  Corbin gave me an eyebrow, and mentioned the glitter on the floor... like he EVER noticed anything amiss in his bedroom.

Next week, I have to meet with the caterer, wedding planner, and venue manager at the venue to finalize things.  I want to wrap up my glittering of trees and move on with decor.  In theory the week after, I'd like to have all this done.

I crack myself up.

After this is over, I am going to have a lot of interesting things that frankly I'm not going to know what to do with.  Maybe I'll start a wedding planning business.  I've sure as hell got the decor.   You are, however, out of luck if you don't want either a summer or winter wedding... I've got nothing for spring or fall...