saturday was somewhat of an emotional rollercoaster for me. not only was it the old lady's BFF rock-ell's wedding day (WEDDING DAY. WUT), but it was my aunt's birthday...the one who passed away just a few weeks ago. my cousins had decided to host an informal gathering at their house for the family to come together, celebrate my aunt's life, tell stories, share food. our plan was to drop the bean off at the party to play with her cousins while the hub and i went to rock-ell's wedding ceremony.
the old lady got an early start on her day, getting ready for her role as bridesmaid in the wedding. when i asked her how things were going, she sent me this screenshot that her co-worker had snapchatted:
so preeeeeetttttyyyy. i loved it all, and surprisingly so did she. she almost always hates the outcome when someone else does her hair and make-up and typically ends up doing some sort of correction. but this time, she was satisfied and left it all alone. yay!
when the hub and i arrived at the church, we found her waiting in the hall along with the rest of the wedding party. it was just about ten minutes till showtime and most of them were nervously hanging around, ready to go.
we took a seat near the back of the church and turned as the music began and the wedding party made their way down the aisle. i stifled a giggle at first when i saw that the old lady had her perma-kool-aid smile on, most likely trying to keep from having her RBF captured for wedding photographs.
and then for some reason, as i watched her glide down with her perfect hair and make-up, clutching that pretty bouquet of flowers on the arm of some random dude in a tux, it hit me. one day - granted, not anytime soon, but one day - i'll be watching her do this all done up and wearing a dress in a different color. she'll be smiling not just for the photographer, but because she'll be so excited and happy to be in that place at that time. the person she'll have chosen to be her partner in life will be waiting for her at the altar, and she's going to be walking up to join him and say the words that will bind them together forever. that smile is going to be so full of joy, and i'll be sitting in the very front row ready to explode with pride...and a little sadness because that's my baby, and she'll be getting married.
i pretty much always cry when i watch a bride appear and make her way towards her fiancé. it's such a beautiful moment, and this time was no exception. but this was rock-ell...the little girl who was the old lady's first friend when she started middle school. the one who would come over all the time and beg me to make potato tacos. she was always there during our food truck chasing shenanigans and birthdays and random fun stuff like that.
it was a nice ceremony, and she looked radiant as she walked back up the aisle with her new husband. he's in the navy, currently stationed in virginia, and they're road tripping across the country in her little car as i type this. afterwards, we joined the old lady up at the front of the church as the photographer did his thing with the bride, the groom and their families. i'm not quite sure why she didn't want to open her eyes here, but there you go.
i managed to get these shots as we left the church:
and then the hub and i grabbed a late lunch before parting ways - the lounge for him and the family gathering for me. when i got there, some folks had come and gone, a bunch more remained, and the bean was still hard at play with her cousins. a look of alarm crossed their faces as they saw me arrive, so i put them at ease and told them they had plenty of time to keep playing.
later on, they busted out the cake we'd brought to light candles and sing happy birthday for my aunt. an old family tradition was revived as we gave the kids the job of blowing the candles out, which they happily accepted.
after a solid eight hours of playing and running and ball throwing and scooter-ing and who knows what else, we finally headed home. the bean proudly announced that her fitbit showed a total of almost 11,000 steps taken that day, and when we pulled into the garage i turned around to this:
that was one heck of a successful day, i'd say.