My cousin, Jed, got married this weekend in the Detroit, MI area. I have never seen a groom unable to contain so much happiness and excitement! It was wonderful to behold. He just grinned so wide and was bouncing up and down on the balls of his feat throughout the entire ceremony!
We originally planned on driving out there - halfway after B got out of school on Thursday and the rest of the way on Friday morning. But my dad so generously offered to fly us out there, so we took him up on his offer. B and I have flown together twice before, but this was the 1st time the hubs had flown with B. I was determined to not check any bags, so I packed up as much as I could earlier in the week and gave it to my parents, who actually drove up. Our friend, Clair, drove us to and from the airport (thanks Clair and Rudy!) We got to experience the new trains at Dulles airport, which thrilled B. Kudos to Delta for not only having the best airline allergy policy I've seen but also for their efficient service that got us into our destinations well before scheduled arrival times. :o) Will be selecting them in the future, wherever possible! One of my many Uncle Pauls flew into the same airport within a half an hour of our arrival, and my parents picked us all up. The hotel was 45 miles from the airport, but the trip was so fast and fun with Uncle Paul's entertainment! He is so good with and patient of B, and asked us to include him in any field trips we take to Baltimore next school year.
The reality of how hard our current economic situation has affected Detroit was driven home to us during the car ride from the airport to the hotel. I have never, in my life, seen entire neighborhoods, schools and businesses abandoned and vandalized.
So Detroit is planning to demolish all of these abandoned areas and turn them into community gardens, so that the locals can grow their own food. I hope their plan is able to take place and is successful.
The hotel that Jed and his bride, Angella, selected for guests was awesome! It is an extended stay hotel of suites. We had a one-bedroom suite with a king-sized bed, full kitchen, dining area, DVD/VCR combo, full hot breakfast, library full of movies and books to borrow, warm, friendly staff and CHEAP! The hotel was right next door to the Silverdome, the former home of the Detroit Lions. Here is the view of the Silverdome from our hotel room:
There was also a White Castle burger joint down the street from the hotel! My brother also drove to the wedding, and I begged him to drive me to the White Castle Friday afternoon so we could get some burgers. Unfortunately, I found out from the employees that they fry in peanut oil, so we had to walk out with no burgers. :o( But no worries, we forgot all about White Castle when we got to the rehearsal dinner. All wedding guests in town on Friday were invited to a local bowling alley for food, cocktails and glow bowling! Even though the area was under a severe thunderstorm and tornado warning Friday evening, we didn't notice in the bowling alley. Each lane could take up to 6 bowlers, so the hubs, B, me, my brother Neale, my cousin Josie (groom's sister) and her newlywed husband, Brendan, played until 10pm. The alley served great appetizers and dinner. Josie pointed out to me that the neon colors of the bowling shoes and laces matched the colors in the carpet. So cool to bowl under black lights! Even better is to hear B say, "I'm tired! Can we go back to the hotel now?" :o) The bride and groom, Jed and Angella, presented B with congratulations-it's-your-first-wedding gifts. They are so thoughtful! They gave him glow bracelets, which he saved for the wedding reception, and a new LEGO set which kept him occupied on Saturday morning.
Due to the storms Friday and Saturday, the church lost power Saturday morning. It worked out beautifully because we got to attend a candle-lit wedding! The hubs and I were so proud of B during the full, Catholic mass wedding. We let him move as much as he needed to as long as he kept quiet and that's what he did. I wish his school could see what a difference it makes to just let him move... None of the ladies in the wedding party, including the bride, held a bouquet during the ceremony. I noticed it immediately during the procession and thought to myself, what a wonderful idea! They are unencumbered by bouquets throughout the ceremony - what a great idea! It turns out, the florist just didn't make it to the church in time! I would not be surprised if this florist's faux pas doesn't end up setting a future trend.
The service ended at 3pm and the reception did not start until 5:30pm. We stopped at a CVS on the way back to the hotel to pick up some anti-itch cream. Ben was having an allergic reaction to something he ate the night before. I will gladly handle a skin reaction, especially away from home, rather than an anaphylaxis reaction! Starting at 5pm, a bus rented from the local parks and recreation dept shuttled guests from the hotel to the reception. What a fabulous idea, especially since there was an open bar at the reception! The reception took place at a beautiful place with historical decor. There was great food, a slide show of Jed and Angella through the years and a wonderful DJ with great tunes to dance to. B and I were out on that dance floor until the hubs dragged us, as well as my brother Neale, off to bed. BOOO! There was also a photo booth at the reception! I've never seen such a thing and it was yet another great idea from the wedding couple. You went into the booth and could choose from a tub of accessories, if you desired. Just like a photo booth on the beach boardwalk, 4 pix were taken of those in the booth at any give time. Two strips of every turn in the booth were printed out. One strip was placed in a photo album for the married couple and we were invited to sign our photos. The other strip copy was for us to take with us. The vendor of the photo booth also gave us his card and said that he would have all photos on his website by Tuesday afternoon for us to download and/or print for free. :o) When we were heading back to the hotel on the party bus, we passed the custom bus for the "Girls Gone Wild" show a couple of blocks from the church! Much to the hubs' dismay, the driver would not stop and let us out. :o(
After all the partying, B slept in 2 whole hours this morning and woke at 7:30am. He and the hubs went to the lobby for breakfast and let me stay in bed. They brought me back breakfast in bed for Mother's Day! My parents gave me a card and B and I gave my mom cards. By 11am we were on the road back to the airport for our flight home. Clair and Rudy picked us up and brought us home. The hubs promptly fell asleep on the couch. I was tired myself, having found it difficult to stay awake on the plane ride home. But I rallied! I left B in charge of his father and went out to forage for licka and dinner. Everyone would be at all of the area restaurants and we wanted to be at home. I got some crab legs, scallops and queso fixin's for our Mother's Day dinner. Such a perfect ending to a wonderful weekend full of family and memories!
Now, I must admit, my eyelids are drooping and I must turn in. Happy Mother's Day!
- I am a very lucky woman with a husband and son who are smart, witty and entertaining. Our son, B, attended public school for two years, and then we embarked on a new adventure in the Fall of 2010 - homeschooling. We don't have all the answers, but we know B and this has been the best thing for him. I blog to preserve our stories and our memories, share recipes, vent and ramble on about our crazy, yet blessed, life. Would you care to follow along?