Highway to Happiness: And That Was That

Wedding Recaps

Once everyone had their fill of dessert, people started to say their goodbyes and make their way out to whatever plans they had for the rest of the day (there was a pretty big college football game going on in town that night, so some folks had tailgates to get to).

I was able to see most of our guests off but I did miss a few because, as careful as tried to be, I still ended up having to excuse myself to be sick for a bit. Based on the time-delay these reactions tend to have, it must have been something in the first course that set me off, but there’s nothing to be done about it now! I did feel bad that it was Roadie’s parents I missed saying goodbye to, but we caught up with them at dinner that night, so it wasn’t the end of the world.

Mama Leadfoot showing her silly side.

Mama Leadfoot showing her silly side.

The staff packed up all our reception details and delivered them back to our room. Even though it wasn’t 10 minutes after we’d okayed that plan that they knocked on the door, Roadie and I had already forgotten they were coming and had already started to change into comfy clothes for the afternoon–he was only half-dressed and ended up ducking into the closet while they unloaded the decorations!

Now, the thing about having an early-afternoon end to your reception is deciding what to do with the rest of the day? We went for the lounge option, sacking out after a very busy morning. We opened the many cards from family and friends and I made sure to start the list of who enclosed what for proper thank-you writing. We also each made up for the scarce bites of cupcake earlier by snagging some of the leftovers that had been delivered back to the room.

(personal picture) The fountain was so beautiful at night--it would make a great backdrop for an evening event, too!

(personal picture) The fountain was so beautiful at night–it would make a great backdrop for an evening event, too!

As I mentioned above, we met up with Roadie’s family for dinner that evening in the resort dining room (the food, by the way, was much better at dinner than it had been at the reception) as well as Friend-ficiant L and her husband who were also staying on property. Sharing a casual meal with his family was a nice “bookend” to the event, having starting the long weekend with a dinner with mine.

(personal picture) So long, Honey Lake!

(personal picture) So long, Honey Lake!

We had a lot of things go wonky on our wedding day, but the important things all went the way they needed to: just right. I’m just as surprised as anyone that I kept my cool through all of it–it was a little bit of not wanting to make our guests uncomfortable by blowing up and a lot of realizing that it wasn’t worth the rise in blood pressure a blow-up would have triggered. Keeping calm meant that, bumps and all, we have more fond memories of the day than negative ones. All I can advise for any other bride is to have back-ups to the important things and then just agree with yourself to go with the flow.

Even though this is the end of the wedding, I’ve still got a couple of posts before I officially hit the road!


The Road Trip Wedding Recaps:

Highway to Happiness: Trading Sweets

Wedding Recaps

As the third course was cleared and the conversation began to ebb, our guests’ glances began to stray to the dessert table in the far corner of the room.

I had deliberated for quite some time how to display our cupcakes. The standard tiered stack is always a good go-to, but since we were dealing with a smaller quantity than those large displays hold, I wanted something that would have a bit more presence without looking bare. Going over what I had on hand, I came back to these telescoping plant stands that a friend gave me ages ago. In the 7 or 8 years I’ve owned them I think they’ve held a potted plant maybe once? Usually they get used to hold party supplies or lights at our parties, and I realized they’d be perfect cupcake stands, too!


I filled each platform with excelsior and then secured corks and paper flowers around the edges–both to fill the space and to help support the small plates resting on the edges of the lower platforms. Since the clear plastic plates I found were just barely big enough to span the diameter of each stand (and the next size up of anything was way too big) I secured those at points with hot glue as well. They mostly survived the trip to the Plantation–enough to serve their purpose.

When the DoC came over to ask which cupcakes we wanted to use for our “cake cutting” I realized I’d almost forgotten about those sweet treats waiting to end the meal! Since we were still a bit pinned in, we opted to do the cake bits at our seats.

That would be a very definite 'no' to little brother's suggestion of a cake smash.

That would be a very definite ‘no’ to little brother’s suggestion of a cake smash.

We were, instead, very careful and very polite.

We were, instead, very careful and very polite.

The traditional kiss afterwards, however, was not so sweet for Roadie, I’m afraid. He’s not a big fan of peanut butter–the smell or taste of it–and the peanut butter frosting on my cupcake had been quite strong. His reaction gave our guests a laugh, though! (He went with the strawberry cupcake, just in case anyone was curious.)


I believe it was at this point we thanked our guests for spending the day with us before inviting them to help themselves to the dessert table.


It was a good thing the leftover cupcakes were being delivered back to our cottage since, once people were up and moving, I didn’t get a chance to finish more than half of mine before I, too, was mingling with our guests. It felt good to get up and stretch our legs, so for our guests who’s been sitting longer than we had I’m sure they appreciated it, too!


The Road Trip Wedding Recaps:

Highway to Happiness: A Few Words Before Brunch

Wedding Recaps

We’d made it to our seats, our DoC asked us what wine we wanted to drink, and everyone got settled in chatting among themselves while we waited for our first course.

MiL Road Trip, Roadie, Mrs. Road Trip, Dr. Aunt--you can really see the respective family resemblences! | Images via Pink Shutterbug Photography

MiL Road Trip, Roadie, Mrs. Road Trip, Dr. Aunt–you can really see the respective family resemblences! | Images via Pink Shutterbug Photography

Now, we hadn’t asked anyone to make any sort of toasts on our behalf, but once we were settled-in, FIL Road Trip stood and gave us a very sweet toast–I wish I could remember what he said but it escapes me at the moment.


Hey, would you look at that–I wasn’t he only one who changed after the ceremony. FIL RT had swapped his white sports coat for a red one. We didn’t immediately catch on, but apparently he was showing his Cornhusker pride that day!


Then Mama Leadfoot (who chose to stay seated) told the story about how I told her I was hesitant for Roadie to meet my family as I was afraid they’d overwhelm his reserved midwestern sensibilities. I don’t remember that particular conversation (and, as such, inadvertently heckled my mother’s “toast” to us by saying as much) but the long and the short of it is that he stuck around so must not have been too overwhelmed.

FiL Road Trip asked if we would mind if he said the blessing before the meal.

FiL Road Trip asked if we would mind if he said the blessing before the meal.

Then it was time to eat!


I believe I’ve already alluded to the fact that the menu was not exactly what we’d approved back during the tasting. Everyone enjoyed their soup (for which I’m grateful) even though mine looked like it was about to separate and had absolutely no flavor, and the bacon-wrapped breadsticks weren’t how I envisioned, but folks seemed to like them so I won’t quibble too much with that. When the second course came out I was dismayed to see that the fruited salad with citrus dressing was fruit salad on one side and a green salad on the other, with ranch and vinaigrette. And the kitchen couldn’t even figure out how to evenly portion the quiche so that the first half of the room got nice, wide slices but the other half got slivers in comparison. Finally, the country-fried steak wasn’t really, the gravy lacked the andouille sausage so was rather plain, and the last-minute vegetables were barely seasoned and only somewhat grilled–a far cry from the terrine that we were expecting.


Not only did the chef bring down our brunch to the rubber-chicken equivalent thereof, there were serious gaps in service. Because my plates were prepared separately I would be served and a good 5-10 minutes would go by before the rest of the food came out. We’d go long stretches without seeing a member of the waitstaff and because everyone was so jammed in on the sides, moving around and visiting with others not directly to your left or right was near impossible–thank goodness we’d done the receiving line!


But I will say this–our group didn’t let it bother them. While there weren’t many lulls in conversation, when one did occur my centerpieces came in quite handy! You may remember I’d added bits of trivia to the centerpieces just in case we needed some ready-made topics. The table my boss and his wife were seated at included the year that email was invented and she was surprised at just how far back it went. That spurred Dr. Aunt to recall her early days in academia when email was still very new, and our IT/Database guru at the third leg of the U-shaped table to chime in, as well. Even though I figured the chances slim that our guests would actually notice the trivia in actuality, I was amazed that it worked as well as I’d hoped.

Just goes to show, you never know what little touches will have an impact on the actual day!


The Road Trip Wedding Recaps:

Highway to Happiness: A Little Dance

Wedding Recaps

Once our DoC introduced us and we entered the Owl’s Nest, we went straight into our first dance.

Considering we’d just spent 15 minutes (give or take) with all eyes upon us as we completed the marriage rites, I can’t explain why the same pairs of eyes watching us dance felt so awkward but it did. Still, I was glad that we decided to go ahead with the first dance and share that moment together and with our guests. I still love our song, as well, and it’s just another memory to call up when I hear it on my iPod.


Blow me a kiss from across the room
Say I look nice when I’m not
Touch my hair as you pass my chair
Little things mean a lot


Give me your arm as we cross the street
Call me at six on the dot
A line a day when you’re far away
Little things mean a lot


Don’t have to buy me diamonds or pearls
Champagne, sables, and such
I never cared much for diamonds and pearls
’cause honestly, honey, they just cost money


Give me a hand when I’ve lost the way
Give me your shoulder to cry on
Whether the day is bright or gray
Give me your heart to rely on


Send me the warmth of a secret smile
To show me you haven’t forgot
That always and ever, now and forever
Little things mean a lot

And with that, we could sit down and truly relax for a bit! (After scurrying down the front steps and up the back steps to get to our seats–it was just too crowded on either side of the table to move around them and I wasn’t exactly in the mood to climb under a table, even in my less-bulky outfit.)


The Road Trip Wedding Recaps:

Highway to Happiness: Until the Wheels Fall Off

Wedding Recaps

Having finished my rapid change, we headed back out to the porch and a few things registered:

  • The golf cart wasn’t where we’d left it
  • It was at the far end of the lane like the driver had taken it down to turn around, but it wasn’t moving
  • “I don’t think the wheels are supposed to point like that”
  • Up pulls the shuttle bus

Unfortunately, Kara didn’t get a picture of the broken down cart but it looks like a slightly less extreme version of this:

Image courtesy of Flickr user Jan Tik

Image courtesy of Flickr user Jan Tik

Turns out, the front axle snapped when he was turning the cart around–it wasn’t until the end of the reception that we saw the flatbed carting it away (they had to get a crane out to get it up onto the flatbed). Some of guests later reported that they saw the driver sprinting up the hill and wondered what it was all about.

Was this a pivotal moment in our day? No. But as unexpected things go, it’s pretty memorable and definitely makes for a good story among the guests. You can’t even blame anyone, really, all you can do is mark the moment and move on.

Image via Pink Shutterbug Photography

Image via Pink Shutterbug Photography

Which is exactly what we did!

Meanwhile, back at the Owl’s Nest, our guests were finding their seats with the aid of a quickly put together seating chart. Since my original plan to make champagne jelly as favors didn’t pan out, the cork-patterned fabric I’d planned to use on the tops of the jar instead went to wrap the backer board of a large frame. Another benefit of the short guest list is that we really didn’t need a complicated seating system: everyone could easily scan the six tables for their name and know exactly where they needed to be.


I will say I was a bit selfish when creating the seating chart. With no real head table or rules to follow, I figured Roadie would want to sit next to his mother since it’d been longer since he’d seen her (FiL Road Trip came down to visit us the previous November) and I figured what’s good for the goose is good for the gander so I sat Dr. Aunt (the only out-of-town relative on my side) next to me, and we worked the family and friend-units out from there. This worked out quite well and I don’t think anyone batted an eyelash at Mama Leadfoot being at to the corner of the cross table instead of right next to me. (Especially since she got to sit between her two sons and she and I see each other five days a week at work!)

As the last guests found their seats, the shuttle dropped us off right at the base of the stairs where we waited for our entrance cue.


The Road Trip Wedding Recaps: