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Sunday, June 29, 2014

Our Happily Ever After: The Reception (Part 1)

So for the sake of avoiding a novel's worth of photos in one post, I decided to split up our reception images into two different ones. This first one will highlight cocktail hour through speeches. For those of you waiting for those "dance party" images, you will just have to be patient for one more day. We are almost there.


Our cocktail hour was held outside in the lawn near our reception tent area. The appetizers and beverages served during this time were set up on antique wagons and in wash basins. We had two signature drinks served throughout the evening. The "Blushing Bride" and our "Mint-to-Be-Mojito". 



One of my beautiful bridesmaids helped us to paint a cornhole set my dad had lying around in the garage to match our d├ęcor. We then found some fabric in our colors and my grandmother covered each of the bags and stitched them up to use for the evening. My dad doesn't know it yet, but I don't think Ryan and I are going to be giving it back - we just love it too much.


As you may have seen in my recent "Our Happily Ever After: The Bridal Party" post, there is an old school house on the property of our venue. In lieu of a slideshow, we opted to utilize the desks throughout to place photos of us growing up (many of them school photos, I may add), along side various vintage books to add some levels and pizazz to the space.


We then used the teacher's desk for our "guest board". We set out white paint markers in a mason jar and the sign below with instructions for our guests.




Our venue also has a picturesque row of pine trees near the school house that are lined with lights (you will see some more of these from our night shots in part 2). In addition to the lights, we decided to hang twine and clip on a variety of Polaroid images of us as a couple to allow our guests to take a "walk down our memory lane" and a glimpse of our lives post those awkward school years as well.




You can see more of our Polaroid images at a former post here.

Finally, for our guests that had a bit of a before dinner sweet tooth, they could visit the "Country Store" on the property to grab a cookie at our "Cookie Buffet". This sweet treat station was open all evening and guests could grab one for now or grab a to-go bag for later!


And, while it may look like we had a crowd of sugar lovin' guests, the image above was taken before the jars were filled ;).

As cocktail hour drew to a close, guests began to head toward the tent to be seated at their tables. All table assignments were written on the vintage window panes pictured below.


Tables either had mint wine bottles and burlap & lace squares for centerpieces...


or blush wine bottles and burlap & lace runners. 
There was a mix of both throughout.


Each guest also received a mason jar glass at their place setting to use as they pleased throughout the evening and to take home at the end of the night. 


We also added little "thank you notes" for all at their places tied with twine to each napkin.



We opted to share a sweetheart table just the two of us. I have to admit, it is one of my favorite details of our day. The special cane back chairs and candleabra coupled with the homemade Mr. & Mrs. signs just looked stunning. (Read more about how I created the signs here.)


The bride and groom needed some drinking glasses as well, with an additional twist of course.
If you'd like to see more of these, feel free to head over to my post titled Mason Jar Glasses here.

To help eliminate guests losing their glasses (since all weren't labeled quite like ours), we left some sharpies up at the bar as well.


Alright, now that we have gotten through all of the details - let the party commence!
First up, the grand entrance.










Our entrance song, in case you were wondering- Lady Gaga's "Applause". Fitting, right?



And here's the padre, looking dapper, welcoming everyone to the reception.







Time for some chow. Buffet style.




Clearly I had started to let loose...


The next two images are of our amazingly talented dueling pianos duo "Felix and Fingers". They seriously ran the show, starting with a little jazz during dinner.



 Oh, and did I mention that if any of our guests sang a song with the word "love" in it during the meal, the jazz would pause, all would watch/listen, and we had to kiss. 
There was no glass clinking at this event all, just a whole lotta "love".

This crew of my colleagues even serenaded us in Spanish :).


Seriously, I am so impressed by our guest talent. They definitely embraced the challenge head on.



 And then we had the speeches.




Andrew, thank you for always believing in us. Even before we knew we were meant to be ourselves.


And for delivering a speech closing that had us laughing uncontrollably.


You are a great man and friend. We love you.


 And then my dear sister, Sarah.




You took all of us on a roller coaster of emotions. Laughing, crying, and back again.






 Your speech was captivating, charismatic and heartfelt wrapped in one.




You have grown up to be such a beautiful woman in more ways that I can describe, and I have never been so proud to call you my sister.






Thank you for not only a speech, but a precious moment, we will never forget. 



So now that I am all teary eyed all over again reliving these moments through pictures, I will leave you for the evening. Back with more for "The Reception: Part 2" tomorrow.

Want to see more of our wedding weekend festivities? Check out:

Special Thanks and Credits:
Dad, Keith, Sarah, Andrew (for your kind words at our reception)
Catering: Hyvee
Vintage Rentals (Cane Back Chairs, Books, Candleabra, etc.): Simple Vintage
Our Sweet Bags Set: Marissa and Gram
Guest Board: Resalvaged
Polaroids: Polaroid Fotobar
"Sweet Love" Sign: Merry Me Signs
Table Florals: Cathy Ott
For your assistance throughout the evening, my girls Amy and Lauren, from An Event Less Ordinary





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