I had a good hour to do some set-up at the reception site first and then had to bust over to the church, about 15 miles away to do the ceremony set-up. The day was surprisingly flawless for the most part, considering there was a lot to do at both sites. The church, although it didn't appear as a lot on paper turned out to be a little time-consuming and with early arriving guests; it was pedal to the floor, that's for sure. But of course it all came together and was done in time to open the doors.
Stacey was so beautiful. Her dress rocked, her hair was sassy and fun, and she was so collected. I had no idea how Stacey was going to handle her wedding day. While it is one of the most precious days of any woman's life, there are sometimes circumstances that can make it a bit sad as well. Stacey's Dad passed away unexpectedly not too long ago so there was no Daddy to walk her down the aisle. Big Brother filled the role very nicely I must say, even getting a big brother/little sister jab in at the last second. :) But Stacey didn't shed a tear as she waited to walk down the aisle and I'm so glad because I knew if she did, the emotional side of me would melt along with her. I have a feeling Dad was walking beside her anyway.
Once Stacey was down the aisle, I zipped back over to UWP to continue with set-up. Thankfully, the person in charge put her staff to work helping me also. There was just so much to do and of course not enough time. Stacey put a ton of work into several projects. She made so many things herself including silver branch centerpieces that also had an electric tealight in them so they glowed, mint boxes on each table, head table decor, you name it...Stacey did it! So, it was a day of running around and praying that guests didn't come early. My prayer request must have gone through on that one, because we had no early guests!
A wedding day is hardly ever complete without a couple snafus though. The worst was that something broke. This is the first time that I've ever had something actually shatter just minutes before the reception is to begin. Stacey had a candelabra in the center of the head table that had glass votive jars in it. It fell. The entire thing came sliding off the front of the head table when I adjusted the monogram in front. Lovely. I found a broom in the blink of an eye and substituted the glass votive holders with tea lights. Sorry Stacey! The 'I DO' letters for the cake table were great and once again, made by the bride; however it clashed with the linen that was on the cake table. So...I reinvented the use of a chair cover to fluff it up a bit and display the letters on this accent piece of fabric instead. Not the best looking, but it got the job done and she still had her letters! A few guests didn't RSVP, but they seemed to have solved the seating arrangement themselves by the time I found out so that was good. A bartender failed to show up, so the Manager had to bartend and direct waitstaff, but she pulled it off. Just little stuff here and there, but as always....it comes together in the end.
UW-Parkside's hall is very nice once it's all done up. Chair covers and lit lanterns hanging from the ceiling certainly put the class into the place. The room transformation was quite unbelievable actually. It's a great setting for those looking for something unique and very affordable. The light (and the hot sun today! Yikes!) that streams through the picture windows is a beautiful backdrop. It's a tri-level area so upstairs is dinner, then down a few stairs is where the cocktail hour and later the dancing is held (oh, and the yummy candy buffet that I'm hoping was created to Stacey's liking!), and then a few steps below that is an area with games, pool, etc. The lower area probably doesn't get used that much for weddings, but it's nice to have there if you have a bunch of kids or teens attending.
Oh....and my new camera is great! Unfortunately, the mass amounts of light coming through made for some difficult picture taking on my part, but you get the idea. It was nearly a 10 hour day, but well worth it. Stacey & Jeff were so happy and gracious and I hope they're dancing up a storm right now!
Ok....blogger is unable to upload pictures at the moment. You've got to be kidding me! I'll come back and edit with pictures later I guess.