Friday, June 27, 2014

Five on Friday {June 27, 2014}

Hey Gals! You know I always love a Friday, but I'm especially excited for this one because it's the very first Summer Friday of my entire career! I am so happy to be able to take a half day and start the weekend a little earlier this summer, plus I'm also happy to share with you the five things I'm loving this week (#1 is particularly exciting!).

ONE | Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? (Spoiler Alert: ME!)

Back in January, I wrote about my New Year's resolution to be a contestant on a game show. I had not made any progress towards this goal by the time of my 1st quarter resolution check-in, but I'm thrilled to report that I've recently been selected as a contestant on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire! M and I will be posting our 2nd quarter resolution check-in next week, so visit us again to get the full scoop on turning my game show dreams into a reality!

TWO | Dating app quiz

As a single gal, I'm not exactly in a position to turn down dating guidance (no matter how random it may be), so I took this fun quiz that M sent me to determine which dating app is best for me! Surprisingly, my result was OkCupid, which is one of the few that I'm not currently using. Any advice for other high-tech or unusual dating options that I should explore?

THREE | Pride weekend in NYC

New York City Pride 2014 takes place this weekend, and I am excited to participate in the march on Sunday to lend my support to gay rights. My theater will also have a booth along the parade route so I will definitely pop by there to promote our new season. Please visit the official Pride website to learn more about how you can help in the ongoing fight for equality.

FOUR | Drop Dead Diva series finale

I should probably be more embarrassed than I am to blog about this little Lifetime original series (as if my addiction to Lifetime movies wasn't bad enough), but PLEASE tell me I'm not the only person for whom this sassy series was a delightful guilty pleasure! Sure, the final season went a bit off the rails (did Grayson really need to come back to Earth as Ian just to fully understand Deb/Jane's body switch experience? And yes, I realize that sounds a bit cray-cray to all you non-viewers) - anyway, this show was must-see Sunday night viewing for me ever since it began, and it was always a nice, fluffy way to ease back into work after a fun weekend. After being brought back to life after one previous cancellation, Drop Dead Diva finally ended its run with an official series finale this past Sunday. Farewell, divas - you will be missed! 

FIVE | The OFFICIAL start of summer!

Hey, did you all catch the memo that according to the calendar, summer has officially arrived? Yay! Looking forward to making lots of sun-soaked memories over the next few months...what's on your summer bucket list?

Thanks to AmandaJennie, and Lauren for hosting today's link-ups!


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Party Planner: She Leaves a Little Sparkle Wherever She Goes

This past Sunday, we celebrated my fantastic friend Alyssa's bridal shower. Alyssa and I met in college thanks to our shared participation in the theater and singing groups, and I am so happy that she remains one of my best friends to this day and I'm honored to be one of her bridesmaids! You know that M and I love some glitz - well, Alyssa is the same way so it was only natural that her love of sparkles was incorporated into her shower theme...

The bridal shower took place at the lovely Olde Stone Mill in Tuckahoe, NY. Here are some pics to recap the event:

Monday, June 23, 2014

To the Class of 2014

In honor of all of the new graduates out there, we're sharing some words of wisdom written by a high school drama teacher to his graduating seniors. This teacher just so happens to be one of my best friends, and I recently choreographed the musical that he directed at his school this past spring so I have the privilege of knowing some of the students who received this message. While this is addressed to high school students, there is plenty of inspiration for people of all ages (and you get bonus points if you catch the musical theater references). Whether you're a recent grad or someone who just needs a little boost today, please read Mr. B's last lesson for his class:

Hello Seniors! 

Do you remember The Drowsy Chaperone? It was the musical the Drama Club presented your freshman year. Maybe you were in the show, maybe you worked crew, maybe you came to see it, maybe not. 

There's a moment in the play at the very end - The Man in Chair has been listening to his favorite musical on a record and finally he's reached his favorite part of the entire show. 

The ingenue, Janet van de Graaff, is torn between a life of love and marriage or a life of fame and glamour. In a moment of crisis, she turns to the Chaperone and asks what she should do. The Chaperone wisely replies...

"L--ve while you can." 

Of course, on the recording that The Man in Chair is listening to, the first word is unintelligible. Another actor dropped a cane while the line was being spoken, and the clatter from the dropped prop overwhelms the voice of the Chaperone. 

Man in Chair: "Is she saying 'live while you can?' or 'leave' while you can'?"

While both are completely applicable to your current situation as graduation looms near (less than 12 hours until 'places!'), I would like to propose a third possibility for the unclear line. As inspired by If/Then, perhaps the Chaperone was saying "love while you can." 

You know how I love a story that ends the same way it began! 

Here's my final piece of wisdom for you: 

If/Then teaches us that "life is short and life is hard." They're right. I also have found that life is a series of tests and the issue being tested is almost always, "Can you be true to yourself in any given situation?" Having taken both roads - actively trying to be somebody else and embracing various versions of my Best Self - I can tell you that life is always easier when you're true to yourself. 

from Hamlet: "To thine own self be true." 

Remember that everything is temporary. High school probably went a lot faster than you anticipated it would. College will go by even faster. Live in the moment - focus on the act of breathing and appreciate what's around you while you have the time. In the end, the only things that last are love and art. May your lives be filled with an abundance of both! 

Remember that you have the ability to cope with any problem or situation that comes your way in life. Learn how to change your perspective and find the silver lining that is present in even the stormiest cloud. It's not easy, believe me, I know, but the more you practice at it, the easier it will be to change your mind. 

It's ok to make mistakes. You've probably made a few by now, and you're certainly going to make more in the future. As Latrice Royale teaches us....

Inline image 1

Finally, remember the people you've met, for better or worse, because each of them has helped make you who you are today. Stay open to all possibilities in life, and you'll find that.....(duh-duh-duhduhduhduhduhduh!) ANYTHING'S POSSIBLE! (#CouldntResist)

I wanted to reach out to you all one final time to thank you for all your hard work this year. I hope that I have had half the impact on your lives that you all have had on mine. 

from The King and I
"It's a very ancient saying, but a true and honest thought,
That if you become a teacher, by your pupils you'll be taught." 

Mr. B (or TJ, if you now wish!)

PS - Remember.... if you can't love in the hell are you gonna love somebody else? Can I get an amen?!


Love while you can - so simple, yet so important.

Wishing lots of love to the class of 2014, and hoping that all students are fortunate to have at least one wise teacher in their lives who cares about them so deeply.


Linking up with Meg, LeeannKimberleeMolly, and Carly!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Five on Friday: {June 20, 2014}

Happy Friday Gals!  Lots of great things to be excited about for this week, so let's get into it!  The five sequiney things I'm obsessed with this week are:

1. My 10 year college reunion!

As I mentioned in my latest mixy post, this weekend is my 10 year college reunion at The University of Scranton.  I can't believe it's been 10 years since graduation - it truly does not feel like I've been out that long, but I couldn't be more excited to relive a little of my college glory days.  And of course I'll be blasting my reunion mixy the whole drive up!

2. My big 9 month old!

This past week baby M turned 9 months!  I can't believe how big he's getting.  His latest favorite big boy thing to do is "walk" around the house while we hold his arms.  And now that we are only 3 short months away from the big o-n-e, I'm super excited to start planning his birthday party!

3. Ben & Jerry's Cherry Garcia Greek Frozen Yogurt

Have you tried this delicious limited edition flavor yet?!  I'm not normally a huge cherry lover, but I'm totally obsessed with Greek froyo, so I decided to give it a try, and OMG - so good!  It's the perfect tart and tasty little treat on these hot summer night.

4. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?

I know this book came out 2 years ago, but somehow I've just now finally gotten my hands on a copy!  I've always loved Mindy Kaling from her Office days, but have an official girl crush on her after obsessing over her show, The Mindy Project, and following her on instagram. Seriously, do yourself a favor and check both out, if you haven't already!  She's a total gal, and I already know I'm going to love her book!

5. A Little Bundle Giveaway Win!

Back around Mother's Day I entered a contest through Liberating Working Mom's blog, and I actually won!  This past week I received my prize, and am already totally in love!  The company is A Little Bundle, and I was lucky enough to win their "Big Bundle" which is a curated box of goodies for both baby and mommy.  I received a couple of clothing items for Baby M that are super adorable, along with  a couple of toys and even a necklace for myself!  I'm totally hooked and trying to justify subscribing, even though I don't *need* another subscription box!

A big shout-out to the lovely hosts of all of our Friday link-ups: DarciNatashaAprilChristinaAmandaJennie, and Lauren!


Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Mixy It Up: College Reunion Edition

Hey Gals!  This weekend is my 10 year college reunion (I know – I’m so old!!).  It’s been a couple years since I’ve last been back to my alma mater, The University of Scranton, so I couldn’t be more excited to head up to the Electric City (yes, that is what Scranton calls itself!) and relive my college days with some great friends.  In preparing for the weekend, I knew I had to make a great mixy to accompany me for the 2.5 hr drive to NE Pennsylvania.  This brought me back to my early mixy days, when Napster was still around and my big Christmas gift Freshman year was a cd burner for my desktop computer!  While my mixy’s may be a bit more tech saavy these days, you can’t beat the “college classics” that used to fill up those burned cd’s from the early 2000’s.  And a little fun fact, my “Villanova Mix” was probably my most beloved and famous mixy among my college gals, which was made for an impromptu trip down to visit B one weekend!

So in honor of my beloved college days, I present you with my best of college mixy!  It’s pretty much a tour of all 4 years, being capped at 20 songs, since that’s usually the max amount that would fit on a burned disc (which means the song had to be really great in order to make the cut!!).  And try not to judge too harshly if some picks don't scream college party to you - this includes everything from bonding with roomies, to crying over college crushes, to kegs and eggs on Saturday mornings.

1. Crazy Game of Poker - O.A.R
2. Wide Open Spaces - Dixie Chicks
3. She Talks to Angels - The Black Crows
4. Your Love is My Love - Whitney Houston
5. Like a Rolling Stone - Bob Dylan
6. Laid - James
7. Escape - Enrique Iglesias
8. Cecilia - Simon & Garfunkle
9. Angel - Shaggy
10. Hey Ma - Cam'ron
11. Hot in Here - Nelly
12. Complicated - Avril Lavigne
13. In Da Club - 50 Cent
14. Ignition - R. Kelly
15. Jenny from the Block - J.Lo
16. Say Goodbye - D.M.B.
17. Hey Ya! - Outkast
18. Caramel - City High
19. Hey Baby (Uhh, Ahh) - DJ Otzi
20. This Love - Maroon 5

What are some of the “classics” that you couldn’t get through college without?!  Any songs instantly take you back to the days of cheap beer, spring break, and gal’in around the dorms?!



Friday, June 13, 2014

Five on Friday {June 13, 2014}

TGIF! I'm feeling particularly giddy this Friday because there are lots of fantastic weekend plans in store. Let's see which five sequiney things we're loving this week, shall we?

ONE | Tony Awards

Broadway's biggest night was this past Sunday, and as a lifelong lover of all things Broadway, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to co-host a big viewing party. A bunch of my theater friends and I viewed the awards at a sports bar with an enormous screen, and had a private area so we were free to erupt in big cheers when a favorite won (Audra, NPH), or loudly vocalize our disapproval at some of the more questionable selections (really, just our pleas for more Bridges). Plus there were drink specials on all martinis made with Pinnacle vodka, and then Neil Patrick Harris licked Samuel L. Jackson's glasses - I mean, really, what more could one want?

All snazzed up for the Tonys!

TWO | BodyPump

Has anyone else tried BodyPump yet? A friend of mine swears by this workout and since I've been wanting to add more weights into my exercise routine, I recently accompanied her to a class at our gym for the first time. You guys, this class was HARD. I mean, "could barely walk down the stairs for three days after it" hard (and it was just going down the stairs that I had trouble, not up - weird!).

When I first arrived at the class, the teacher immediately called me out for being new and told me to add more weight to my bar. I think I was so eager to please and prove myself that I may have overdone it just a little bit, but I really enjoyed the class and definitely plan to go back (just with a slightly more doable weight this time). Does anyone have any BodyPump tips for me?

THREE | City weekends, summer-style

The weather this past weekend was PERFECT. I love to plan so it's rare that I have an unscheduled day to roam the city, but that's exactly what happened this past Saturday. In the morning, I stopped by a local farmer's market and took a solo walk through Central Park. Later, I met up with a group of friends in the afternoon on The Frying Pan, a bar on a boat in the middle of the Hudson River. After spending a few beautiful hours outdoors, one friend and I branched off to try out a new restaurant where we totally splurged (thank goodness I told you about BodyPump first!) on mac and cheese, spinach artichoke dip, chocolate cake, and lots of other yumminess. The day was capped off by a relaxing movie - it may seem simple and maybe even a little boring, but it really was just a perfect, spontaneous day spent with fabulous people.

FOUR | Gal time

We're ready to gal it up!

And speaking of fabulous people...last weekend, M and Grill Guy were in NYC celebrating their big five-year anniversary, and I joined them for Sunday brunch before they headed back to the suburbs. Obviously we had tons of topics to catch up on, and it was a fun throwback to the weekend days that we would spend together back when they still lived in the city. Luckily, the good times continue tonight because the Gals of The Sequin Notebook are having a good old-fashioned sleepover, and I couldn't be more excited about it (hence my giddiness!). We're ready for some crafting, blogging, cackling, gossiping, wine, and Bravo marathons (and if we get a little..."spirited" can expect some jokey Instagrams from us) - yay! 

FIVE | There's no place like home!

Happy Father's Day to my incredible dad!

After spending some gal time with M, I'm heading home to my parents' house to celebrate Father's Day. We're planning to go out to dinner tomorrow, and then spend Sunday in the backyard with my dad manning the barbecue. Personally, I plan to spend a lot of time relaxing in my favorite place in the house - the hammock in our backyard!

I hope you have an amazing weekend - have a great time celebrating all of the fantastic fathers in your life!

A big shout-out to the lovely hosts of all of our Friday link-ups: DarciNatashaAprilChristinaAmandaJennie, and Lauren!



Thursday, June 12, 2014

Father's Day Printables {Free Download}

Hey Gals!  Grill Guy left some huge shoes to fill after the amazing Mother's Day he planned for me so I've been racking my brain to plan a special day for his first Father's Day.  So while I dream up the perfect day for him, I did what I always do - craft up some printables!  While I know I'll need a bit more than just some pretty prints, it's always a good start and I'm hoping all of the other details will start to fall into place.  And because I couldn't forget about all of my Gals, of course we've included a link so you can download your own copy for this Father's Day.

Download: HERE

For all of you Gals who have your act more together than me, what do you have planned for this Father's Day?

- M

Friday, June 6, 2014

Five on Friday {June 6, 2014}

Hey Gals!  Today is a very, very happy Friday because it's my 5 year wedding anniversary with Grill Guy!!!  Though I'm sure you already knew that seeing as we've been posting about it all week - haha!  Well I fully appreciate all of you Gals indulging me in all of my anniversary nostalgia, and hope you don't mind just one more post in honor of the big 5!  So today my obsessions are a look back at my big day, with 5 of my favorite wedding memories!

1. My great big tent!
My dream come true!
I know I can't be the only one who became totally obsessed with tent weddings thanks to Father of the Bride, right?!  But my love didn't end there - I fell in love yet again when our favorite Sex and the City Gals headed to the Hamptons for a big, big, big tent wedding with Bobby and Bitsy!  So when GG's parents casually offered up their yard as our wedding locale, we quickly took them up on their offer and my tent wedding dreams became a reality!  And while my great big tent wedding was everything I dreamed of and more, one of my absolute favorite memories of the tent happened the night before the big day!
Pre-wedding and still so perfect!
We had just finished up the rehearsal dinner, and before heading to the hotel we decided to make a pitstop at GG's parents house and check out the tent.  The real reason was to check out the lighting situation (apparently our parents felt that it was too dark and we needed to add in some last minute lights so people could see their food?!) but having a sneak peek of the tent before it became my reception hall was such an amazing memory.  And of course B and I had an impromptu dance party to test out the dance floor and make sure it was ready for the big day!

2. The gift exchange
His face says it all...
I know what you're thinking - wow, one of M's favorite memories is the gift she received?!  While I did receive an amazing gift, this memory is more about the gift I gave GG.  Back when we were registering, he thought he'd be funny by adding a ridiculous, huge ceramic rooster to our registry.  Well when it came time to get him the perfect wedding day gift, I thought what better gift than the precious rooster he insisted on putting on the registry!  Yes I was being a little funny by giving him the rooster, but it was also a symbol of one of my very favorite things about our relationship - his funny, silly sense of humor and how we just have so much fun laughing together.  So while it's not your traditional wedding present (and I did feel a little guilty after receiving a diamond bracelet from him!) it represented us, and I still smile every time I look at the rooster!

3. Entering our reception
Ready to party!
For our entrance, we used the song "Wonderful Day" by O.A.R., and I'm assuming that unless you are a huge fan of O.A.R., you probably aren't familiar with the song (and if you aren't, I urge you to give a listen - such a good song!!).  But GG and I happen to be huuuuge O.A.R. fans, so this song was pretty much the most perfect song ever for us to walk in to.  It's a super upbeat, fun song that's basically about the best day of your life - sooo perfect, I know!  And I have a distinct memory of the opening chords of the song playing, right as we were about to enter and just feeling so much happiness and love and excitement.  It was such a perfect memory and to this day, whenever I hear the song I get a bit choked up remembering our own perfect, wonderful day!

4. The toasts

Wedding toasts tend to be hit or miss - either they are amazing or a complete flop.  Well I may be biased, but the toasts at my wedding were completely amazing!! And I was lucky enough to have 3!!  I know what you're thinking, why 3?!  Ever since I was in college, I had tormented Bridesmaid M with the fact that she must give the toast at my wedding.  Well luckily she made good on her word and gave such an amazing and personal toast that meant so much to both GG and I since she was there from the very start of our relationship.  Combine that with 2 heartfelt and funny toasts from B and our best man, brother GG, and you pretty much have the best wedding toast of all time!

5. The morning after
Our epic morning-after - and yes, I am holding a bottle of gin AND my wedding dress in that first pic..
Literally the second I woke up the morning after our wedding I turned to GG and giggled about how we were married and then I paused for about a second before I asked if I could call B and invite her up to our room so we could recount the whole day!  The phone call will live in history as one of my favorites of all time, and the gal'ing and brunching that followed was the perfect ending to an amazing wedding weekend.   A bunch of our bridal party convened in our room and we had a couple of post-wedding cocktails and then headed out to an impromptu brunch at Perkins.  It was so perfectly imperfect and while I'm sure the restaurant hated us, it was such a fun way to relive the night before with all of my closest gals and guys.

Thanks for allowing me to relive all of my wedding goodness, Gals!  It's been an amazing 5 years (well, actually 12 if you count the 7 before the wedding!) and I can't wait to celebrate this weekend with GG!!  And for all of you married Gals, what is your favorite wedding memory?!

We are linking up today with DarciNatashaAprilChristinaAmandaJennie, and Lauren!

- M

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Craft It: Top 5 DIY Wedding Crafts

We're continuing Wedding Nostalgia Week here on the blog with a look back at some highlights from M and Grill Guy's wedding in honor of their 5th anniversary! One of the hallmarks of this wedding was M's attention to every last crafty detail. As her dutiful Maid of Honor, I was more than happy to plug in my glue gun and help create the wedding of her dreams! What I find most impressive is that this wedding took place pre-Pinterest (please take a moment to let that sink in so you can truly feel old)...somehow she managed to keep crafty and carry on all by herself!

In honor of this special anniversary, here is a glimpse back at 5 of M's best (and totally Pin-nable) wedding crafts!

1) Escort cards
Since the wedding was in a gorgeous outdoor setting, M took advantage of the natural decor by using a tree as her seating chart. We bought chocolate brown beaded ribbon and glued it to the bottom of these escort cards, then scattered them among the branches of a beautiful tree.

We were feeling a little punchy one night in the midst of a long craftathon, so we decided to take a bit of a break and adorn Grill Guy with the beaded ribbon!

Not amused!

2) Programs
M designed these programs on her laptop using the same monogram that served as the official logo of her wedding. When I visited her house for some last minute crafting the day before the wedding, these programs caused a minor snafu when I spied a slight typo (hey, it's the MOH's role to look out for the bride!). Luckily, all was fixed quickly after M and I hopped over to the nearest Staples and sweet-talked the copy machine guy into letting us reprint them and make this a rush order!

3) Fun Fact Napkins
We individually stamped hundreds of cocktail napkins with Fun Facts about M and Grill Guy's relationship! They were a fun icebreaker at cocktail hour, and they gave the guests some new insight into the happy couple.

4) Cake Topper
Isn't this gemmy L cake topper beautiful? Well, M has Grill Guy to thank for that! He painstakingly applied each individual rhinestone to this cake topper - his delicate dentist hands are perfect for that kind of detail work!

5) Invitations
This invitation suite received tons of compliments, and deservedly so! First, M and I went to the ribbon store and searched for the perfect shades and textures.

We then hand-stamped each individual page of the invitations:

Not surprisingly, M has a trusty cocktail right by her side, which is always the perfect crafting companion - perhaps it's a Weddingtini?

Anyway...each card was then laid out separately to dry (easier said than done in a small Manhattan studio apartment!).

Finally, once all of the pieces were pulled together and assembled, the invitations looked gorgeous and totally professional!

And of course, they had to make an appearance at the actual wedding (and there's that monogram again!):

Which wedding craft is your favorite? Would you be able to handle wedding crafts without a little inspiration from Pinterest?


Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Signature Cocktail: The Wedding-tini

Hey Gals!!  As B mentioned in her previous post, this Friday marks my 5 year wedding anniversary with Grill Guy!!  I can’t believe how fast it’s gone by – it really seems like just yesterday I was torturing enlisting B to help with all of my crazy wedding planning and crafting (just kidding.. we both loved every second of it!!)

One of the more fun projects I did was creating a signature cocktail!  As B mentioned, this was pre-pinterest (ugh.. just typing that out makes me feel very old, and how on earth did we all get by without it?!) so I’m proud to say I dreamed up this concoction all on my own!
Sneak preview at my bachelorette extravagant-za!
It was right around the time that a lot of the vodka companies were starting to expand their flavor palettes and I had just discovered how delicious espresso vodka was.  So that became my main inspiration, and I played around a bit until I found the perfect combination of flavors (definitely one of the more fun pre-wedding tasks I had on my plate!) and my wedding-tini was born.  Not the most creative of names, but I promise that the taste more than makes up for it!

Of course it had to have a custom sign to go along with it!
I definitely recommend doing a little teaser of the cocktail at some of your pre-wedding events.  We served this up at both my shower and bachelorette, so by the time the wedding came, my guests were more than excited to get another taste of the “famous” wedding-tini!!   In fact, these were such a huge hit at the wedding that my friends and family often request the wedding-tini at holidays and family events (and luckily FIL Grill Guy is very well versed with recipe and always ready to shake one up!).
Tearing into some shower gifts - thank god I had my wedding-tini to help me power through it!
1 part espresso vodka (our go-to is Van Gogh Espresso Vodka)
1 part vanilla vodka
1 part Bailey’s Irish Cream
1 part Godiva chocolate liqueur

Did you feature a signature cocktail at your wedding?  I’m always up for trying out something new, so please share your delicious recipes with us!



Monday, June 2, 2014

My Best Friend's Wedding: Favorite MOHments

It's hard to believe, but five years have flown by since Grill Guy and M said "I do" and became husband and wife! 

Mr. and Mrs. Grill Guy

With this milestone anniversary approaching on Friday, I thought it would be fun to take a look back at their wedding through the eyes of one of the supporting characters...the Maid of Honor (yes, that's me)! 

The maid of honor and the bride / B and M!

Since Julia Roberts is currently the main source of material for remembering your best friend's wedding (and we all know what a disaster THAT turned out to be), I've decided to put my own spin on things by reliving M's special day here on the blog with some of my favorite Maid of Honor memories (or as I like to call them, MOHments!).

After a delicious rehearsal dinner, M and I spent the night in her hotel room sharing memories and making predictions about how things would happen on the big wedding day (let's face it, we were also loudly cackling long into the night). The next morning, it was time to step into our wedding finery - of course, M's ensemble required a little help from her trusty MOH, so I gamely zipped her up, helped her slip on her fabulous purple heels, and adjusted the sparkly brooch on her dress bow.

Putting the finishing touches on M's bridal look
In a flash, it was time to head to the church! We grabbed our gorgeous bouquets and went downstairs to the limos.

M and her ladies in waiting
When the bridesmaid limo arrived at the church, I saw that I had a text from M and panicked that we had forgotten something important. Never fear - she was simply texting me a ridiculous inside joke, which made me laugh and get even more excited for the day's festivities.

Once we were lined up in the back of the church, it was go time. M and Grill Guy got married in my childhood church, so I was very familiar with that aisle and strutted down it! As you can see below, I couldn't contain my huge grin - I was just so excited for my best friend that her big moment was just around the corner!

The ceremony was beautiful, but I don't remember too many of the details because I was just trying not to mess anything up! Finally, it was time for M and Grill Guy to seal the deal with a kiss - yay, they were officially married!

The big kiss, in front of the love bench
After the ceremony, we hopped back in the limo (and popped some champagne) and drove to a nearby beautiful park for some photos. I'm kind of cheating by including the below photo since I didn't actually see it happen and therefore it may not technically qualify as one of my favorite MOHments, but I just think it's such a stunning picture that I had to include it!

See what I mean? It looks like a fairytale!

Of course, the full bridal party got in on this modeling action and gave the camera some fierce faces and poses.

After some more snaps, it was time to head to the reception! 

M and Grill Guy's reception was held in a breathtaking tent in his parents' expansive backyard. Here are just a few pictures of their stunning set-up...

Isn't it beautiful? Love a tent wedding!

After some cocktails and mingling, it was time for our official announcement and entrance into the tent. M picked the perfect song for the bridal party's entrance ("Glamorous" by Fergie) and for the second time that day, I strutted on down in my purple chiffon dress.

Best Man and MOH

Like any good Maid of Honor, I was a bit nervous about the tasks I had to complete during the reception. First there was my speech...

...and then I sang a little tune (what can I say, I've always loved the spotlight!).

Once that was over, I breathed a huge sigh of relief and focused on dancing the night away! One of my favorite dance MOHments came towards the end of the night when the DJ announced M had made a song dedication to her Maid of Honor - since high school, we've been obsessed with the scene from She's All That where everyone perfectly dances to a choreographed number at prom, so that was our special song at the wedding. Loved it!

Call me biased, but I can honestly say that this was a top-notch wedding (I mean come on, you saw the amazing reception photos!). M did a ton of crafting that gave the wedding a very personal feel (and this was pre-Pinterest!), the incredible food and drinks flowed continuously, and I was up on the dance floor grooving all night long. However, my very favorite MOHment of my best friend's wedding was being able to stand by her side as she pledged her lifelong love and commitment to Grill Guy - I was so excited and honored to be part of this fantastic day!

Oh, and of course, we managed to sneak in a few moments of gal time:

Classic gal moment

Congrats to M and Grill Guy on their 5-year wedding anniversary, and cheers to many, many, MANY more!


Linking up with Meg, LeeannKimberleeMolly, and Carly!

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