I Was Told There’d Be Cake

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I started writing this yesterday morning:

This weekend was INSANE and to be completely honest, it was so busy that there was barely time to relax and enjoy. It feels like the weekend went by in a blur and now it’s Monday morning and there’s at least six inches of SNOW on the ground and freezing rain making the roads incredibly slippery and the highway I usually take is closed due to flooding and I’m wearing my fat pants today and uh. Just one of those mornings that an incredibly fast weekend does not help.

So, Friday was really cool because after work, I got to meet up with a friend of mine that I haven’t seen in over six months. We used to work together and after she moved onto another job, our schedules just didn’t mesh up to hang out until now. We got a drink at Mully’s bar in Syracuse and spent about two hours chatting about our families, our jobs (she has a job I would KILL for) and just life in general. Greg was home with Zoey, so this was actually one of the few solo adult times I’ve had without Zoey or Greg since Zoey was born. And let me tell you–it felt great.

Except for the fact that Greg called in the middle of it and said, “Don’t worry. I found Scout.”

What the what now?

It turns out that, unbeknownst to me, he had texted me and left messages on my phone a couple of times that when he got home from picking up Zoey from my mom’s house, Scout had stuck out of the house and took off at warp speed for parts unknown. So, with Zoey in tow, Greg went searching for Scout all over the neighborhood and finally found him. He texted and called me because typically when Scout gets out, we freak out because we live right next to the highway on one side and a super-busy road on the other. By the time he finally got a hold of me, all were present and accounted for and safely back in the house. So I went back to giggling with Alison and drinking my white russian.

I got home in time to play with Zoey for about a half an hour before she decided it was time to go to bed.

The next morning, we woke up to rainy weather. Because we had just gotten Zoey back to health from having a double ear infection, Greg and I decided it would probably be better for me to take Zoey grocery shopping while he went to his cousin’s pig roast (we had originally been planning for the whole Preble Road gang to go). I invited my mom to ride along with us and we headed for the super Walmart in Cortland to get groceries.

By the time Greg got home later that afternoon, I had all of the groceries taken care of, a load of laundry in the washer, two dozen cookies baked and cooling (even a batch of dog cookies were done) and I had folded all of the laundry that had already dried. Also, I had tried a Halloween costume on Zoey for a review I’m working on and both Zoey and the dogs were fed.

Suffice it to say, when Greg got home all of those Martha Stewart-like shenanigans stopped because, man, I was TIRED.

Sunday, I got  up early and got ready to travel with my mom and two of my sisters to the bridal show in Syracuse. I somehow managed to sneak in the shower without a little girl insisting on going with me, but when it was time to leave, she was NOT a happy camper. Greg and I knew she was in dire need of a nap, but she was grouchy enough to throw an ever-loving fit when I told her it was time for me to go bye-bye. Greg worked on calming her down while I slipped out the door and feeling like the worst Mommy in the world, I drove to my own mom’s house to carpool with her (I texted Greg from Mom’s house to check on Zoey–she was still fussing at that point, but it wasn’t too long before she fell asleep for a good two-hour nap).

Mom and I drove to my sister Cristy’s house and met up with her and one of my older sisters, Colleen, and then the four of us piled into Mom’s van and headed for the fairgrounds (also home to the New York State Fair).

So,  I had never been to a bridal show before and I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. My awesome cubemate at work, Abby, had told me about one she had gone to, but other than that, I really didn’t have a clue. I figured it would be kind of a big affair–lots of vendors, maybe some fantastic cake samples and, of course, lots and lots of wedding dresses. I had told Cristy (the bride-to-be) that if she saw a wedding dress she liked and she needed me to beat it out of the hands of another bride-to-be, I’d do it. Granted, I’m probably the wimpiest person in the world, but she’s my little sister and I’m a bridesmaid and I take those responsibilities seriously. Sort of.

We got to the venue and ended up having to park about fifty miles away from the actual building where the show was being held. Okay, that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but we walked. And walked. And walked. When we finally got inside the building, Cristy checked in (she had already preregistered online) and we all got cute little stickers that proclaimed what our role was in the wedding. For example, Colleen’s and my tags said ‘Bridesmaids’, but according to the looks we got from the vendors, it really said, ‘Not getting married. Not the one with the money. Don’t talk to. Waste of time.’ The ‘Bride-to-be’ tags were fluorescent pink and the ‘Mother-of-the-bride’ tags were silver–much easier to spot than our purple ones.

Seriously.

The vendors were so blatant about looking at our tags and then basically turning away from us when they realized Colleen and I weren’t a bride or a parent of a bride. The only people who seemed interested in talking to us were the lady at the colored champagne booth (the berry champagne was good) and the weirdos at the ‘Skinny Booth’ (that was really the name of it, by the way)–called such because they state their spa treatment includes putting something that looked like a thin, rectangular baby wipe across your belly, wrap you in Saran wrap and have you drink water for a while. The girl said they also ask you not to sweat while undergoing ‘the treatment’. Apparently, this helps remove cellulite, stretch marks and the like. I am not making this up. I am, however, incredibly proud of myself for not laughing  out loud when she explained the whole ‘procedure’ to Colleen and I. Seriously? And people pay money for THAT?

So, there was pretty much one booth for invitations, one booth for tuxedos, one booth for wedding gowns, one DJ booth–pretty much one of everything, except two hotels and two wedding venues. And, oddly enough, one travel agent that was pushing a trip to Barbados for a honeymoon. There wasn’t a whole lot to choose from and that makes me wonder what kind of deal these vendors get from the Syracuse High Authority On Weddings Council or whoever put on the event.  I mean, the booth for wedding gowns also happened to be the people who displayed their dresses in the fashion show later that afternoon. It just seemed a little ‘you scratch my back…’.

A really cool thing, though, was that The Empire Room–the place where the show was held–had servers circulating through the crowd with appetizers on trays. And one booth had cupcakes on display. Another booth had little squares of strawberry cake to sample (all piled up on a little plate), but no way to pick them up and that seemed a little…unsanitary. But those booths still put the tuxedo booth (who only had Hershey kisses) to shame.

We got around the whole room within about an hour or so. Cristy listened to numerous speils, collected business cards and brochures (I scored a free pen and magnet. Woot!) and then we had about an hour to kill before the fashion show. Since there really wasn’t anywhere to go, we headed to the conference room where the fashion show was going to be and claimed our seats early. Turns out, it was kind of a good idea because we weren’t the only people to wander in early.

I used the hour wisely by joking with Greg via text and checking Facebook on my phone. Thankfully, the hour did go pretty fast.

The bride and bridesmaid dresses were gorgeous, of course. There were only a couple that I didn’t care for. One of the models almost fell when she was walking up the stairs from backstage to the runway. Everyone gasped, but she caught herself and carried on. I probably would have started crying in embarrassment. One of the models looked like she could be really mean and I was sort of hoping that she would fall, but she didn’t.

The only thing I didn’t like about the fashion show was that they’d show a few dresses then stop and give away a couple of door prizes, show a few more dresses then stop and give away a couple more prizes. It felt really choppy. Plus, every time they finished giving away door prizes, the lady that owned the store where the gowns came from always had to say ‘a few words’. Granted, she was giving the brides helpful tips, but it was kind of annoying because everyone just wanted to see the dresses.

After the show was over, they brought out a gorgeous three-tier wedding cake and put it on a table on the stage. Four prospective brides were randomly picked via their ticket numbers and they were told that a plastic ring was hidden somewhere in the cake. Whichever bride found it first won a diamond necklace that had been donated by one of the vendors. And then, when told to do so, the brides actually ripped the cake apart with their bare hands.

The whole thing was over in seconds. And everyone was laughing and it was funny and… it sort of felt a little demeaning to me, but I didn’t say anything. When I told my cubemate, Abby, about it, she agreed that it sounded weird. I’m not sure why–it just didn’t sit well with me.

We left the bridal show after that and headed to the CopperTop bar and grill in Camillus. I have to say, as much snark as I have shown towards the bridal show, the best part of that outing was getting to hang out with my mom and sisters. I can’t even remember the last time that the four of us were able to chill out together without significant others or kids with us. We had a wonderful lunch at the CopperTop and then headed back to Cristy’s house to say our goodbyes and part ways for the day.

When I got home, Zoey was in a MUCH better mood than she had been that morning. I told Greg all about the bridal show and how when he and I get married I pretty much don’t want any of that stuff. THAT’S what I learned from going to the bridal show–Cristy and I have different tastes. She’s going to have a big, gorgeous, perfect traditional wedding. And that’s awesome, but I don’t want that for me. I want something much smaller, something where I don’t have to worry about chair covers and Deejays and the fact that the emcee at the fashion show said that getting a photographer for $800 is actually a really good deal (gah!). No stress. And, dear Lord, no $90 per plate catering.

I finished up the weekend cuddling with my baby girl as she fell asleep for the night–the best–and quietest–moment of the weekend.

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