Better Late Than Never: October 16, 2010 {Reception}

by Jenn (eating bender) on March 3, 2011

Holy bananas this post is overdue. But the good news is that now I get to relive one of the best nights of my life, five months later. Now where did we last leave off…?

Oh yes. Paradise.

Following the ceremony and the pictures, we made our way to the reception venue at the Cochise-Geronimo Clubhouse in Desert Mountain. The sun was setting, and we arrived just in time to be greeted by the paparazzi! 😉 After we snapped a few photos, we headed inside to get a glimpse of the gorgeous decor.

The chairs, the centerpieces, the menus (created by Mama Bender). Everything was perfect!

Our cake was simply exquisite. Created by Cathy’s Rum Cake (who desperately needs a website facelift!), there were three tiers and two flavors: strawberry-banana rum and chocolate rum. Can you sense a theme here?

The swans that adorned the cake table were a gift from my parents. Fun fact: swans find one partner and mate for life. :) A very appropriate gift for newlyweds!

After the cocktail hour, guests began trickling into their seats for the “grand entrance.” The wedding party came in with flair to the sounds of Black Eyed Peas.

When Bobby and I were announced, the music changed – to the tune of the Northwestern fight song!

As you can see, Bobby was appropriately outfitted for the occasion. :)

If you’re interested, below is the video of the fun!

Once everyone was seated, there were the toasts.

I know I may be biased, but I have had multiple family members and friends tell me that these fab five toasts were the best they had ever seen at a wedding. I feel so fortunate and blessed because truly, everyone’s kind words meant the world. First up was the best man, Bobby’s brother Jim. Then came my maid of honor and bestie, Sam. Both of them had a mixture of hilarious and poignant things to say to us.

Then came Papa Bender, who is always counted on for corny jokes – and a sweet ending. He spoke a lot about Bobby and me as he remembered us in high school. “The dating scene, a dad’s worst nightmare,” as he called it. Little did he know back then that seven years later the guy I brought home junior year would become my husband. :)

And then there was this kid.

Anyone who knows my brother Eric will tell you that he is the sweetest kid you will ever meet. I caught him staring at a small sheet of paper and practicing before we went into the reception and nearly burst into tears right then and there. My brother, as many of you know, has mild autism, and had recently joined a Toastmasters club at school to improve his speaking ability.

Well, turns out this rockstar did not reference his notes…AT ALL. My dad later told me he spoke purely from his heart. As you can see from my reaction, it got progressively more charming as he went.

Fortunately, I don’t just have to tell you about it. You can see it for yourself! My Uncle Bob magically taped all of our toasts. You may not be able to see him clearly, but just listen. I promise it’s worth it.

By the end of the speech, it took everything in me not to trample Bobby to give Eric a hug. Both Bobby and I were crying, and Eric looked very proud of himself. This is the little boy who Bobby played Star Wars light sabers with in our basement ever since he was 10 years old. To see him grow into a 17-year-old full of compassion and love is one of the greatest things going in my life.

Bobby admitted right away that he was a tough act to follow, but he still managed to make me blush.

And then…we feasted!

The very same dish I raved about during our wedding tasting. A combination of a perfectly tender and portioned piece of filet, marinated in a rich and flavorful dark sauce and served over a bed of white chocolate risotto, and a small piece of chicken stuffed with a roulade of spinach and cheeses. We also enjoyed the butter lettuce salad topped with a balsamic vinaigrette and surrounded by candied pecans, fresh feta cheese and strawberries.

Bobby and I made the rounds while everyone was eating. Then it was time to cut the cake!

We were way too nice about it. :)

Before we knew it, the night was half over and guests were being ushered into the dancin’ room!

Jill, I just had to post this picture. I love it too much not to. :)

Our first dance was Amazed by Lonestar. It’s been our song since high school!

Next came the Father-Daughter dance to Tim McGraw’s My Little Girl.

Which later turned into a Jimmy Sturr polka to incorporate Bobby and his mom!

Then it was time for everyone to get their groove on!

The females belted out the words to Summer Nights.

The couples boogied their hearts out.

Speaking of these two lovebirds, Bobby and I were delighted when it came time to toss the garter and the bouquet. We knew who we wanted the winners to be and they did everything they could to make it happen. :)

Alex, my maid-of-honor Sam’s boyfriend, managed to snatch the garter out of Eric’s waiting hands. Sam, on the other hand, was another, more hilarious story entirely.

Wait, what’s going on back there?

Victory taken from the aggressive arms of my little girl cousin Sarah?

Aw, Sam. You deserved it. :) I know you and Alex are next in line!

My mom and I finished out the song Single Ladies with intense precision.

And the night continued with more dancing, a photobooth…

…and plenty of love to go around.

If asked to live that night over again, my answer would automatically be, “heck yes!”

And so there you have it. My wedding day has finally come to a complete close on this blog. It’s bittersweet, but I hope you enjoyed the recap and let me know if you have questions on any of the details!


{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Natalie @ Will Jog For Food March 3, 2011 at 12:46 pm

Those are amazing pictures!! That rum cake must have been awesome! It must be so fun to reminisce :) It looks like everyone had such a wonderful time.


2 Jenn (eating bender) March 3, 2011 at 12:56 pm

This was one of the most fun posts I’ve ever written! :) I’m glad I waited this long – haha! Thank you.


3 Karla March 3, 2011 at 1:32 pm

What an AMAZING post and reception!! I so wish I could have been there :) It looks like everyone had the time of their lives and I adore the aura of genuine happiness around this whole event. Thanks so much for sharing—and congrats to the wonderful couple and family!

PS: That first picture absolutely looks like paradise. Agreed!


4 Jenny March 3, 2011 at 1:45 pm

What a gorgeous wedding and beautiful cake!! Congratulations, wish you both the best :) You looked spectacular


5 Jess March 3, 2011 at 1:54 pm

Such fun dancing pictures. You look beautiful (as does your cake!)


6 jsutera654 March 3, 2011 at 2:21 pm

Um seriously, totally welled up at the part about your brother. SUCH a sweet, sweet story. I just love how Bobby took him under his wing when you two were first dating, that is the sign of a true man. He’s a keeper!


7 evamadera March 3, 2011 at 2:57 pm

What a wonderful day! No wonder it’s bittersweet to write this post. You definitely got a good man. 😀


8 Erica March 3, 2011 at 3:46 pm

SO fabulous! The food & cake look great and it seems like everyone just had a BLAST. Its amazing how quickly time flies after your wedding!! The last picture is my fav :)


9 Katy March 3, 2011 at 4:02 pm

Did you have to make me cry at work? Between the pictures, the story of your brother’s toast and overall wedding weepiness, I need several tissues.

So beautiful…


10 Jenn (eating bender) March 3, 2011 at 4:07 pm

You are so sweet. :) Seriously, thank you for the kind words!


11 Miles and Manhattan March 3, 2011 at 4:05 pm

SO AMAZING! Beautiful images!


12 klh March 3, 2011 at 6:37 pm

Looks like an amazing night!! Your brother’s speech…so SWEET!! He loves you both!

Katie : )


13 Jenn (eating bender) March 3, 2011 at 11:16 pm

Thank you, Katie! :)


14 Melissa @ TryingToHeal March 3, 2011 at 7:03 pm

ah, i was just looking at pictures from your wedding the other day!!! it was such a great night!


15 Jenn (eating bender) March 3, 2011 at 11:16 pm

It truly was – and I’m so glad you were there for it! :)


16 BroccoliHut March 3, 2011 at 8:01 pm

Wow, what an elegant and fun event! I love your color scheme–I’ve always thought of doing a purple-toned reception if I ever get married.


17 Jenn (eating bender) March 3, 2011 at 11:18 pm

Thank you! The Northwestern colors rubbed off on me. When I first went there, I really didn’t like the color purple. But now I realize how many shades there are to love – lilac, eggplant…wine. 😉 Glad you like the scheme, too!


18 Amy March 3, 2011 at 9:48 pm

Oh wow, oh wow.

Your reception looked absolutely amazing! I kind of like the fact that you took your time in posting this because it was an unexpected surprise.

Thank you so much for sharing your wedding experience with us. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – you looked breathtaking, as did every single person who took part in your special day.

That picture of you and your brother captures your moment perfectly – I cannot get over how much emotion is in that one snapshot. Your love for your brother, and his love for you, shines so bright.

Finally, I LOVE that your wedding party walked in to the sound of the Black Eyed Peas. Also, your parents are amazing – breaking out into dance on the way in! <3

I'd say it definitely was a good night!

Again, gorgeous, beautiful, and oh so elegant. Thank you for bringing a smile to my face through your shared memories.


19 Jenn (eating bender) March 3, 2011 at 11:11 pm

Your comments never fail to bring joy to my evenings! Thank you for the kind words about our reception. I am glad you enjoyed reading about the day and again, appreciate everything you say so, so much. :)


20 luckytastebuds March 3, 2011 at 10:16 pm

LOVE this post!!! I can see the emotion in your eyes when you hugged your brother. That’s sooo heart-warming. Thank u for sharing such special moments my dear. I’m going to watch the video now…maybe send it to my brother too. hehehehe

Girl, i dont care if its 5 months late, i’m just glad I got to read and see pictures of your wedding!!!!


21 Jenn (eating bender) March 3, 2011 at 11:18 pm

Thank you so much, Michelle! That picture really is worth 1,000 words to me. :)


22 Sara March 3, 2011 at 11:22 pm

Thank you for sharing your special day with us! And a double thank you for sharing the video of your brother. He’s such a sweet boy!


23 annie March 5, 2011 at 10:58 am

omg white chocolate risotto?! sounds kinda bizarre but I would try it!

those pictures are gorgeous! you look soo gorgeous in your wedding dress!


24 jobo March 5, 2011 at 4:26 pm

awwww!!! That was a beautiful re-telling of your wedding. Your brother’s toast got me all choked up! SO very sweet. I loved it. Beautiful! Congrats again :)


25 Kristie March 5, 2011 at 9:54 pm

Awe Jenn, I just love this. So much happiness and love in all of these photos! With your brother’s toast having me tear up and the pictures from the photobooth with you wearing the cheesehead… well, I just love this :).


26 angelicamg March 7, 2011 at 9:04 am

LOVE the purple accents at your wedding! I’m thinking the same for mine–that, or sapphire. Haha I’m not even engaged yet, but it seems I have already begun planning! 😉


27 Jason @ Shutter&Saute March 7, 2011 at 9:24 am

Great pics, congratulations!


28 Shannon March 8, 2011 at 6:50 am

oh my gosh, this made me happy :) love it!!


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