a michigan wedding.

i have been trying to write this blog for 5 days. give me a round of applause if i ever finish it.

last fall i made a beautiful new friend named devon. in january, her boyfriend stephen asked me to be a part of an elaborate surprise proposal for her. and a few weeks ago, i got to be a part of the wedding. never ever in those first few weeks of our friendship did i think that less than a year later i would be standing up in her wedding.

praise the Lord i was able to fly from california to michigan a few days before the wedding. i had to leave for the airport super early on wednesday morning, but i made it to grand rapids just in time for the bachelorette party. 

have you ever been belly dancing? dev's best friend from high school planned the party and she signed us all up for a 90minute belly dancing class. i was really nervous about it, but it ended up being really fun. our teacher was incredibly nice and we just had fun laughing with each other and of course at each other. i have to admit, my favorite part of the class was the first 10 minutes when we did stretches to john mayer music with the lights dimmed. oh john. i love you.

some of the girls had an in with the owner of a dessert bar in downtown grand rapids, so we headed there after our dance lesson even though all i wanted was a cheeseburger. they had seriously delicious desserts. cookies and milk! chocolate cake! other things i don't remember! (i still wanted a cheeseburger, but mcdonalds was closed.)

we slept in the next morning. enjoyed dev's grandma's perfect screened in porch (with a view of the lake!), and headed to starbucks for drinks and a copy of a british folk cd which features chloë's brother. #5 if you're interested. 

the best part about weddings, if you ask me, is that they are basically reunions. all the friends from indiana started showing up on thursday, and boy was i happy to see them. i mean look at these stunners!

thursday was the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner. i got yelled at several times at the rehearsal for not exactly paying attention and talking too much. but i mean, can you blame me? wouldn't you want to talk to all your people you haven't seen in months? the rehearsal was a fiesta pool party which was both delicious and a blast.

dev was a genius and had all the girls stay at her grandma's house (the wedding was in the backyard). this meant we had several late nights on the most comfortable bed ever, catching up and laughing and soaking each other up.  hannah, emily and i stayed with dev at her house while she wrote her vows the night before the wedding. i have been to one other wedding where i stayed with the bride on her last night as a single lady, and i have to tell you, it might be my favorite part of the whole wedding. it always feels like such an honor. its just you and your closest gals. no fuss. just a sweet few moments together before everything changes the next day.

we decorated for the wedding the morning of, which i thought was going to be terrible, but it was actually so fun! even the guys helped. plus it isn't that hard to make a location like this look beautiful. and boy did it turn out beautiful.

chloë and james officiated the wedding. chloë wore the most stunning dress from london. and she did my makeup. thanks again, chlo. i heart you. 

and as if there weren't already enough friends involved in this wedding, even the photographers were good friends of mine. bless. miranda fuchs was the main photog and alicia wines second shot with her. (click their names to take you to their facebook photo pages.)

this massage chair was in our room. i spent every spare minute in it.

let us take a minute to talk about the flowers. are they not incredibly beautiful? i will let you in on a secret, dev and her mom made them. from paper. can you even believe it!? i love flowers. they're one of my favorite parts of a wedding. and these ones were SO beautiful. some of my favorites. ever. 

if you know dev, you know that she does just about whatever she wants. she does not care if people think she is crazy. example: she would often scream my name down the mallway in the student center at school. i would cower in embarrassment, shushing her as she came running down the mallway laughing and shouting. so, when dev told me she was going to cut her hair AT HER WEDDING i wasn't surprised. when she said she was going to cut it TWICE, i still wasn't surprised. 

so, despite my many many protests, she cut her beautiful long, thick, luscious curls into a bob between the ceremony and the reception. i took a selfie with a piece of her hair. it was just so beautiful! but the bob was adorable. and then after the reception, before they left for the night, she cut it into a pixie. i don't have a picture of that. but she's crazy and i love her. you do you, dev. never stop.

and then, as if the day had not been fun enough, the entire bridal party took a yacht to the reception. because God bless america if you don't take a yacht to the reception, you're doing it wrong. it was so much fun. this whole bridal party was so. much. fun. 

don't you even worry, we toasted with sparkling cider. and then we danced so wild that we had to take our hair down. texas sized hair forever and ever amen. i've never danced so hard at a wedding, but i was just really feeling it that night. they didn't even play the wobble, which is my go to dance song, but there were so many friends there and the boys were dancing so wacky and i just went with it. i threw caution to the wind and i danced my hair out.

they left for the night through a tunnel of sparklers and i said goodbye to stephen and dev for who knows how long. 

it was a beautiful day. i mean truly so perfect in so many ways. i laughed and cried and danced and soaked every moment in. someone get married again quick. lets do this reunion thing all over again. 

and don't worry, the fun doesn't stop there! i followed most of these people back to indiana to spend more time with them. but you'll have to wait until the next post for that. hopefully it doesn't take me a whole week to write it. 



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