Looorrrdy do. I've got to sit down. The last six days have been a crazy whirlwind. Andrew and I have been to Hendersonville, Clemson, and Charleston--all in the name of fidelity, family, and friendship. The first leg of our trip was to Hendersonville, to crash for the night and to see Zach's new digs, (and what shiny and spacious digs they are), and catch up with old pals that we haven't seen since I-don't-know-when. Andrew and I went our separate ways on Saturday morning--him to Lake Wateree for another friend's nuptials, me to Pendleton for a sweet, sophisticated bridal luncheon with Jamie and Friends. I left with moments to spare and only took one wrong turn, (even though I had the GPS--hey, sometimes you can't really tell where the purple line is. Geez). Still, I had to shimmy out of my shorts and into my skirt on the road, tempting the Fates and testing my flexibility and concentration. I made it in time for mimosas and excited chatter and the powers that be were none the wiser of my tardiness.
Saturday afternoon, sans husband, the Girls 'n' I made our way to the amphitheater at the Botanical Gardens at Clemson, just in time for the first raindrops to splat on the stones and drive us inside to the Madren Center to rehearse for the Big Day. We dined in style at The Galley with friends and family surrounding Jamie and Kent with kind words, encouragement, laughter, and advice. I'm pretty sure anyone with a propensity for tears was boo-hooing, Yours Truly included. I just can't take it when grandfathers, dads, or brothers get choked up, man! And then, of course, Steph with her life altering friendship with Jamie--I was a goner. For sure. It was one for the books. And for a few, one worth a "To-Go" box.
Sunday fun-day was Wedding Day and all the girls convened in the Bridal suite at the Martin Inn, dresses, shoes, and earrings in hand. Oh, and bobby-pins, hairspray, and waterproof mascara, too. It was a morning of finger foods and up-do's, cameras clicking and champagne glasses clinking, peals of laughter and a few crocodile tears, too. A quick change of ceremony venues because of the deluge outside--not without careful consideration--and we were set to see Jamie and Kent get hitched in a few short hours. The ceremony was beautiful--heartfelt and bursting with Truth, reminding us of our purpose, marriage's purpose, and Christ's heart of love for his people. Jamie was absolutely. STUNNING. I'm so serious. I've seen some beautiful brides in my time, but Jamie was just magazine picture perfect! We partied the afternoon away, and saw the freshly minted Orrs off with Clemson orange pompons (yes, I mean "pompons". Look it up.) and glow-sticks lighting their way.
Then. Andrew, Chris, and Jennigray and I began the arduous journey back to Charleston. Jennigray rode with me until Orangeburg and we giggled and chatted until she had to make the switch. The rest of the way home, I had to blast the radio and slap my leg in time to keep myself awake and alert to make it home. I was "le tired", as the French say. Andrew and I made it home safely, a little after one AM, and were greeted by my parents and my Big Brother, Noah, who is a hot-shot bartender in New York City. No, really. He is. We all hung out for the first part of the week until I had to get back yesterday. Noah taught us how to make some yummy cocktails, but more on that later.
Last night as I was driving back to the Triangle, a hurricane whipped up right above Stella and me and dogged us for about 50 miles. It was terrifying, to say the least. To say the most, I could not see but a few feet in front of my car, (there's a reason they call it "blinding rain"), water covered the road, and Lightening reached her bony, spindly fingers into our atmosphere every few minutes, with booming Thunder as her hair-raising side kick. I wanted to pull over and ugly-face cry. But I didn't. I gripped the steering wheel and squinted into the distance, cursing every 18-wheeler that sped by me, totally disregarding Stella's and my fragile state. We made it, though. A bowl of Multi-Grain Cheerios later and I was in bed, a-snoozin' away.
And I will leave you with this...moments before becoming Mrs. Jamie Blackwell Orr!