And then there was a big party....

And then there was a big party....

SO where was I?

Oh, yes.  At 6 pm the party commenced.

LaGrange Country Club- a very low key, family oriented place was selected as the venue.  We had a bad tasting in January, because the club was closing for the winter and we scheduled it on Pasta Night.  We worried.  We shouldn’t have.  Our second tasting produced magic from the chef, Patrick Aftanas.  Lindsey Uyeda kept everything on the rails, and many people said it was the best catering they had ever taster.  They did not par-cook and sauce at the last minute- they cooked and served in platoons.  Every plate was fresh. Ray Bell watched over every detail, and Todd Hale, the Club manager took care of a zillion details. (Like hiding a dumpster full of construction debris so it would not be the first thing seen by the guests.) I am SO not a Country Club person- I do not golf, would never appear in a swim suit in public, hate snobbery in every way.  Steve has always said a club that would let him is suspicious.  When he was furloughed, though, he decided to take up the sport of masochists.  I have to admit that this is a place where I feel comfortable and content.  As a poor cook, it helps to have a holiday/special occasion destination that will not poison my family.  Maybe I will learn to golf- but for now, Steve’s fitful golf outings represent my breathing room here at home.  I’ll pass. But dinner….that is another story…The caesar salad in a parmesan bowl..Mama Mia!

Anyway- back to the nuts and bolts:

Appetizers were passed- mini beef wellingtons, lobster tempura on a skewer and mini spring rolls.

Dinner: Stacked BLT salad on a toast circle.

Steak medallion and Shrimp.

Fresh veggies and a wall of sour cream infused mashed potatoes.

Cake. from Toni’s

Yum. It had better be. Just saying….

Late night snack: Ledo’s pizza.  Kirschbaum’s Smiley cookies, with custom icing. Coffee bar.

Flowers: Shamrock Gardens in Riverside- beautiful table goods, gorgeous bouquets.  Great value.

Bridesmaids’ dresses:  Off the rack, last year from Banana Republic.  Kathryn held her breath for a month so she could wear hers.  At 20 weeks pregnant, she was constrained just a bit.

Moms’ dresses: Nancy, short and sassy from Cache, and me- forgiving and stretchy, Dillard’s online. I am a lazy Mom of the Groom.

Tuxedos: Emanuele Tuxedo Rental

Transportation: Windy City Limo shuttled guests to and from the Burr Ridge Marriott, wedding central. Praise God we had no Chicago connection on NATO week.

After the entry parade, where Matt and Justine entered to “The Dog Days are Over”….

Sean Higgins welcomed, Steve prayed (mercifully there were no lightning bolts). We ate.

The toasts were dear- the girls were admiring and loving to their sister.  I knew Justine better as they concluded, and loved her fierce determination even more.  She will need it with Matt.  Just kidding, Matt.

Not surprisingly- my boys told of every unsavory episode in Matt’s life.  Their goal was to shock the grandparents.  I suppose they did make the bride’s side worry about the Dahl family roots.  Not Roger, though- Rick and Steve had broken him in well.  He is literally unshockable.   Pat and Mike were hilarious- and eventually loving and complimentary.  They gave mad props to Justine for the task she has taken on.

Matt took the mic and thanked all for coming, and disassembled his brother’s accusations.  I won’t go into details, but he said he was a sod farmer, ringmaster and stunt swimmer.  You can pair those with grass, naked circus and toothless 8 year old.  For a man who was dry heaving at 5:30, he was as smooth as silk.  I was proud.

We did the traditional dances- and gave the floor over to the kids.  Go 2 Guys were the MCs/DJs and they never stopped- not for an instant.  Nurses party.  The guests abandoned shoes and went nuts.  There was grinding by Brendan, obligatory swaying by Steve, a few line dances and tons of happy young people singing along.  I know it was the party the kids wanted. They even snuck a few extra minutes in after midnight.

These are things that did NOT happen:

No visit home to have a wedding picture with Best Dog, Walter. (no time- though I had a bow tie for him)

No acoustic number by Pet Lions. ( I love to hear them- Matt vetoed.)

No song composed for Justine by Matt, though I nagged him to do it. (cheesy, he said).

No Slide show or movie, despite the fact that all 3 Dahl boys work in video production.

No ice cream.  (it DOES melt while folks are dancing)

No photo booth. (done at wedding 1 and 2)

No favor (donation to PAWS, first home of Matt’s wing man Walter)

It went by faster than I would have dreamed, and at 12:45, I was home, cuddling Walter, Mabel and Milly and sleeping.

We hosted a brunch the next morning back at the hotel, and this concluded our festivities.  Matt and Justine headed to Hawaii, we moved their gifts to their new home, Steve resisted opening the cards,hid them, and we called it an adventure.

Other thanks go to Bambi of BCR Events, for choreographing the timing, and Rose Marie Martin, who should have had the night off at the Club, but was there as a guardian angel to make sure everything sparkled.  And it did.  All the familiar servers showed up to help, and we think of them as part of our family, since we celebrate all holidays and family milestones there.  (I will not leave a dollar in the food account- it turns to zeros) It made the night fun.

Miller and Miller did the photography, and Leap Weddings filmed.  I cannot vouch for the quality as yet, since we have not seen the work- but given the love in the room, I think they will have great memories for us…jus as we forget the details.

OK- I have been a brat.  Here is a slide show of the few pictures I hijacked and dragged from Facebook.  Enjoy.  I am glad to answer any questions you leave in the comments section.


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