SandL Getting Married: the Final Countdown

If you're curious about the post title see our "celebrity nickname" here. SandL = Sean and Lauren. Linking back to that post reminds me that I have to update you on my more than one-year-old nephew as well!

Two weeks before Sean and I got married we celebrated our upcoming nuptials with our bachelor and bachelorette parties. Sean and his friends stuck around downtown St. Louis, and my bridesmaids and I took advantage of the occasion with a road trip to Memphis, Tennessee.

 We rented a minivan, which the girls decorated with cheesy (read: awesome) bachelorette party flags and magnets. By the time we got to Memphis I think there might have been one or two left... apparently they were not windproof. We arrived late, attempted to have a few drinks in our hotel room, and turned in for the evening to work up some energy for the following day.

Saturday morning we woke up and walked across the street to the Peabody Hotel for the morning duck march. It was impossible to get a good shot of the ducks themselves with the dim lighting, but I would definitely recommend the experience to anyone who has a chance to visit Memphis. The hotel is gorgeous. You can read the story of the ducks at the Peabody's website.

Below you can see us checking out the rooftop at the Peabody. They have an excellent view of downtown Memphis. Unless the sun is in your eyes like it obviously was for all of us in the photo. I swear we were having a good time. This photo just makes me laugh.


My Maid of Honor Emily and I with the Peabody Duckmaster:


After the duck march we rounded another corner to hit up Rendezvous for some world famous Memphis BBQ. I'm honestly more of a KC Masterpiece kind of girl, but it was worth the experience and was quite tasty in its own way.

And what's a trip to Memphis without a stop at Graceland!?! Yep. I know you're thinking, "Are you sure this was for your bachelorette party?" But this is just how my crowd rolls. Minivan, ducks, BBQ and Elvis.

I'm pretty sad Anna isn't in the pic below (she was taking it) because it's one of my faves from the trip. Gotta love a little instant photo moment here and there, and reminds me that I need to bring my own instant camera with more often! Look at us... audio tour lanyards and all. I swear this really was my bachelorette party.


Of course, after we hit a couple of Elvis themed souvenir stores we headed back to the hotel to get ready to hit the town. So yes, here's where the traditional "bachelorette party" started. On Beale Street. And for some reason I just don't have a ton of photos from that point on that I'm willing to share on the internet. But here's a few:


My bridesmaids Becky, Crista, Emily and Anna and I on Beale Street.

 Evidence of a good time: Rhinestone encrusted bride chalice, sparkly bachelorette tiara, party veil, everyone in matching beaded necklaces, airbrushed TCB tattoo. Which I tried to convince Sean (by text) was something permanent and would "look beautiful in my wedding dress!" He didn't buy my story. Guess he knows me pretty well.


And in case you were wondering, yes... those are extensions. I was lucky enough to have a trial hair and makeup session the day we left for Memphis and thought our trip would be an excellent time to test them out. They're clip-ins- I have very fine, thin hair and wanted to add some bulk for my bridal updo. Admittedly, I'm not as great at putting them in or styling them as my stylist is! Below you can see a giant bucket of Hurricane at Silky O'Sullivan's and an extra classy "diamond" ring that flashed a bright pink light.

We also visited Coyote Ugly while on Beale Street, which was my personal favorite. Though honestly a bit trashy overall, it was a fun experience. I may have been a bit obsessed with the movie Coyote Ugly in late middle/early high school, so there was no way I was missing out on going to one of the actual bars. They don't actually spray you if you ask for water at the bar, by the way :)

We made a few other stops: Wet Willie's (which reminded us Mizzou grads of Trops, but more expensive), a restaurant that I can't recall the name of, but where I had fried alligator for dinner, and finally, Club 152, where we rounded out the night with one heck of a dance party. The next morning we packed up our minivan and headed back to St. Louis, 13 days from our wedding day.

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I wish I had more digital photos of our rehearsal dinner, but my usual photographer (Sean) was a bit pre-occupied that night! I do have some printed photos in a scrapbook my mom made me, so I'm happy the night was documented. And behold! My tiny, two month old nephew makes his first appearance on the blog, argyle sweater vest and all. He's 14 months old as I type!

You can also see my rehearsal outfit: dress and sweater from H & M, white lace shoulder applique and belt borrowed from my mom's wedding gown. I chopped her gown (my parents married in the long-sleeved/high-necked/polyester 70's) to pieces trying to come up with something to make for the rehearsal dinner and I was so happy when I landed on this. I thought I'd go with a short white dress, but in the end decided I wanted something more useful for the future since I was using such meaningful materials. I still wear this sweater all the time!


The night basically went like this: I forgot my dress at home so Sean had to bring it to me at my hotel room before heading to the rehearsal itself. I freaked out trying to organize everyone (worried that the wedding day would be the same), and we did a brief run through of the ceremony where our officiant pronounced Sean's name "Sheen".

We headed to Wild Horse Grill for a delicious meal hosted by my in-laws as many of our guests tried to stay up-to-date on that evening's Cardinal's game (I'm assuming you know how that whole thing ended up, right?) After spending some time with family, our wedding party, and some delicious food, we handed out gifts and I was finally able to calm down. Thankfully, I got it all out during rehearsal night!

Stay tuned next for my biggest wedding DIY: our invitations.


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