Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Step Into My Week 9.3

Since yesterday was a holiday (hopefully it as for y’all as well) I decided that this past week’s Step Into My Week post could wait until today since it feels like a Monday. I also spent yesterday traveling for the better part of the day, which meant I had plenty of time to fully put together my thoughts after a weekend celebrating my brother’s wedding and gaining a sister!  Before I headed to California on Thursday; however, there was plenty to get done at work in preparation for an extended long weekend. 

My to-do list for this past week was started on Wednesday of the week before meaning that I knew I would have to grind out a lot in a short amount of time. Then four meetings were scheduled for Tuesday, and I was needed to assist at a shoot on Wednesday so Monday became the one day I’d be guaranteed to be at my desk to accomplish these tasks. It was pouring rain as I headed to work which did not help with motivation, but once I got inside the office, I was able to tackle most of the list within a single day. I started by catching up on emails and responding to social comments on our various platforms. After that, I went ahead and drafted all of our social posts for the week and part of this one. That took a lot longer than I thought it would without even having them scheduled into our planning platform. I had a few content management tasks to do that helped to break things up before lunch, which was nice. After lunch, I worked through some resources for a Christmas issue, handled invoices, and continued to work on social-related tasks. It was so dreary in the afternoon that there was a point where I thought I was going to fall asleep given how soothing the rain sounded haha. After work, it took all the motivation left in me to go to the Y to work out before coming home. I talked to my parents on my drive home before showering. My roommate and I had invited our friend Allie over to eat take-out and watch Bachelor in Paradise while catching up on one another’s lives. I worked through a few blog tasks I needed to get done before bed and ended up falling asleep later than I would’ve liked.

Tuesday morning was still pretty gloomy, but fortunately, it wasn’t pouring as I walked into the office. I had a couple of hours at my desk in the morning to get through some work and social scheduling before spending most of the rest of the day in meetings. We had a team meeting for The Cottage Journal scheduling out future issues, then I had a team lunch for Southern Lady before coming back to the office for a web meeting for cottage. I finished up the day gathering props for the location shoot the following day and finishing up a bit of copy and social scheduling. After work, I went to the Y to work out with my friend Macy. We decided to go on a walk to catch up even though it was about to storm and ended up getting poured on. We did the rest of our workout inside with a circuit specifically focused on arms and abs. I went home to get cleaned up and have dinner and ended up looking through the wedding photos Sophia’s photographer had sent her way before getting in bed to do a bit of blog work.

Wednesday was my last workday of the week, and I only spent about an hour and a half in the office rushing to finish things up before leaving town. I met our stylist and photographer at a house in Mountain Brook for the photoshoot we had that day. We were outside which made for a hot, sweaty day, but the outdoor space of this house was incredible, and I want an excuse to paint something the same color as their outside doors. Since there was food involved in the shoot, it made for a long day, and we didn’t wrap the shoot and get everything packed up until a little after five. I headed home and quickly changed into a workout tank to go on a walk with Nell since she was back in town after her second summer break for PA school. We caught up on life, and I made her serve as a sounding board as I read my toast for my brother’s wedding to her. Once she left, it was time for me to shower, do laundry, eat dinner, and pack. I definitely overpacked for my brother’s wedding, but I got it done and was in bed around 10:00.


I woke up around 4:30 on Thursday so that I could get ready and finish up a blog post before going to the airport around 6:15 for my 7:40 flight. I don’t want to jinx myself, but the Birmingham airport has been so easy to navigate the past couple of times I’ve been! The flight was full, and I was in the very last row but somehow ended up with an open seat next to me. I used the flight to finalize and re-read my toast while listening to music. We arrived in Dallas about an hour and a half later where I had a little bit of time in the airport before getting on my second flight which landed in San Jose a bit after 3:00. I slept during most of the flight, thanks to this pillow. My parents had arrived in California the previous day, and my dad came to the airport to pick me up and bring me back to the hotel where my mom and brother, Gil, were. Eventually, my dad and brother went to pick up pizza while some of our out of town friends arrived. Our suite had a balcony that we ate on before enjoying some downtime (and me taking an accidental nap) before my grandparents came and it was time to get ready to head to the welcome party at one of Shannon’s (Gil’s fiancé) family members’ houses. The weather couldn’t have been better, and we enjoyed being outside without humidity and mosquitos as much as we could. Since the group was on the smaller side, I felt like I got to know the other bridesmaids and Gil’s groomsmen better than I would have if I had been introduced to them all at once. Toward the end of the party, we played Jeopardy about Gil and Shannon, which was so well done and highly entertaining. My parents and grandparents headed out a bit earlier, leaving my brother and me behind to chat with friends a bit longer. On our way home, Gil and I stopped at Jack’s for some food since we hadn’t had dinner. As odd as it may sound over a weekend filled with fun events, this may have been one of my favorite moments since it was just the two of us. I was convinced that we would get back to the hotel and my parents would be asleep, but instead, they were holding court in our hotel room with their friends. It was really fun to hear stories from their friends about various stages of their lives even if it meant a very late bedtime while transitioning time zones.

Friday morning, we slept in a bit before heading to the poolside restaurant for breakfast. I’m a bit embarrassed to admit that we ate there four times over the span of the weekend, but fortunately, the food was really great, as was the setting. After that, my mom and I went to get our nails done to kill some time before getting ready to head to Stanford to rehearse at 3:00. That took about an hour, which gave us some downtime before needing to be at the rehearsal dinner at 6:30. The rehearsal dinner was on the patio at a restaurant not too far from Stanford’s campus called MacArthur Park. Everything was set up beautifully, and we spent the first hour or so eating appetizers, drinking, and mingling before it was time to be seated. My dad welcomed everyone to the event, and my brother had asked me to give my toast there as opposed to the reception. I thought the toast went really well with plenty of laughter and some tears shed by guests so that definitely felt like a win and was nice to finish and not have to worry about on the wedding day. We stayed around for a while after dinner and dessert were finished before heading back to the hotel and getting in bed. 




Saturday was the big day, and we started with breakfast as a family at the poolside restaurant. I had to meet up with the other bridesmaids at 10:00 at the DryBar to get my hair done and then spent the rest of the time before the ceremony with them. Once our hair was done, we went back to the house they were staying at and had lunch and got ready. Shannon, her sister, her mom, and I all left for the church around 1:15 with the other bridesmaids following shortly after. We had some downtime at the church before getting some of the photos taken and the ceremony beginning. The inside of the church was hot, and I felt for the guys in their tuxes given that I was sweating in my flowy bridesmaid dress. Everything went well during the ceremony although my brother’s boutonniere fell off and he stuck it in Shannon’s flowers, which got a good laugh from the crowd. We were thrilled to be able to step outside briefly after the ceremony for some air before more family and wedding party photos. Those took until about 4:30 at which point it was off to the Palo Alto Club for cocktail hour and the reception. 



I didn’t know a ton of people at the reception since my brother and I went to different high schools (his was boarding) and colleges at nearly the same time meaning I had only met most of these people briefly. After cocktail hour was over the bridal party was introduced, and then the bride and groom before our seated dinner. During the dinner, a few other toasts were made, the bride and groom shared their first dance, and the father-daughter and mother-son dances occurred. My brother ended up splitting up his dance between my mom and I which was sweet and unexpected. After dinner was over dancing began. The DJ played a fun mix of old and new songs, and I was somehow able to get some of my family and parents’ friends onto the dance floor. It was also nice that I was able to chat with some of his high school friends who ended up being my “friends” for the night even if that meant taking tequila shots together and dragging my dad into those as well. The night ended with the cake cutting, more dancing, and a sparkler send-off. The younger crowd stayed outside chatting for a while and eventually decided against going out afterward and instead headed to bed. 

Sunday was definitely a slow day with some family not feeling their best after having a lot of fun the night before (hey, dad!). We had breakfast at the hotel again and hung out with family for most of the day. Gil and Shannon didn’t leave for their honeymoon until yesterday and spent part of their first day as a married couple hanging out with family before we all went our separate ways. Our hotel suite had become the hub for family members and stayed that way pretty much all day aside from a two-hour spell when we all took naps. We packed everything up that night and went to bed early since our alarms were set for 3:00 for our flight out on Monday.

I hope that y’all had an equally as fun Labor Day weekend and aren’t nearly as tired as I am today! 

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