Friday morning at 4am I woke up to the window AC unit freezing over. In order to keep the flowers cool enough, I had to bring them into my room, close the door, and crank the window AC. Our AC is old and generally ineffective, so freezing over is common. What isn't common is going to bed expecting your fiancee is not coming home, and then freaking out because he's in bed next to you smelling like way too much booze and naughty bachelor party shenanigans. It was a good thing there were 5 kajillion flowers in the room to drown out some of those smells, I promise you.
After turning off the AC and finding out I wasn't as alone in bed as I thought I was, I passed back out until 6:45, when I realized that I had 15 minutes before I had to meet Heidi (Ammon's Step-mom) and Heather (Ammon's sister) at Sam's Club. For all of you who are interested in joining Sam's, spring for the Premium membership with extended club hours. Shopping at 7am at Sam's totally rocks. They even have coffee for their early birds. We needed to buy a ton of food and beverage. I was buying food for everyone for the day, plus all of the sodas for the wedding, while Heidi was getting some stuff for the rehearsal dinner. We managed to fill an entire flat, plus a jumbo shopping cart. Don't mess with 3 women shopping for enough food for an army. They mean business.
As we were leaving Sam's, I realized that I was already late for getting over to the venue. The event rental company has scheduled delivery at 8am, and it was 8:05am. I captured Heather and she and I made a mad dash for the venue. Sure enough, the tent people were already there and ready to work.
Poor Heather was a total champ, and the best sister I could ever ask for. She helped me unload a flat's worth of stuff out of my car, and then took my car back to my place to start the arduous process of waking up Ammon. Ammon had left his car in Fort Collins, and we really needed both vehicles. Meanwhile, I stayed back at the venue and started the long, long process of set-up. Oh, and I posted a few pictures of everything to Instagram... because obviously, you all must love this stuff as much as I do, right?
My father in law and youngest brother in law Max showed up around 10 with food for me. I was starving by this point, and that Taco John's breakfast burrito tasted like heaven. We talked through kind of what I wanted in terms of set-up for the ceremony space, and they told me that they would take care of it. The great thing about Ammon's family is that they all really like to build and plan things, and so if you give them a general concept, they can run with it.
Ammon showed up around 10:35 with the archway and another brother in law, Doug. It then took all four of the men to place the archway:
Somehow, I kept ending up alone, or with only one person to help me, and no vehicles for long chunks of time. During these chunks of time, I could often not get ahold of anyone either, so I felt pretty dang cut off from the world. At one point I called Ammon to find out where he was -- they were supposed to get their tuxes and then come right back, so that they could swap cars with Ammon's dad and go get some big stuff from the garage. It turns out that the boys decided that they needed food, and instead of coming back to the venue, they went out to eat with Ammon's older brother and sister-in-law 30 minutes away at a sit down restaurant. The things that came out of my mouth when I found this out... they might have made a biker blush. Mind you, at this point I was moving a veritable mountain of picnic benches by myself. I think I hung up on Ammon, but I'm not sure. I was trying to contain some serious rage.
Ammon finally came back to the venue, this time with a couple of reinforcements, and then he left again. He was sent on errands all day, which was really frustrating. Every time I would turn around to ask him for help, or to even look for him, he was gone. It made it seem like he wasn't as invested in the process, even though he was... just in a different way. I took my reinforcements and set them to work on hanging bunting around the outside of the tent, moving tables inside the tent, and staking out where the chairs would need to be set for the ceremony. There were so many details to focus on all at once, and I was really feeling the pressure. Luckily, Ammon's sister-in-law, Rosa, is a total champion and saved the day more than once. The bar was sitting really crooked, and she sought high and low for a piece of wood so that she could make it even. She also told hilarious stories. It was really what I needed at that point.
Finally around 2:15 I had had enough and needed a break. I called V and told her I was going to come get her, take her to the venue to pick up where I was leaving off with set-up, and that I was going to run errands and get a massage. As she got in the car I was mentioning that I needed to go buy a steamer still -- we had registered for one, but it hadn't been purchased, and those dresses needed a steamer like I need coffee every morning. And wouldn't you know, my ever so sweet maid of honor told me that she was going to buy me the steamer as a wedding gift, and asked me to immediately drive to Kohl's. There is a reason why she is my favorite.
After crying for the 5th time at how sweet my friend is, and then getting her over to the venue, I went in to Target to buy some things that were still on the shopping lists of doom -- have you ever noticed that wedding shopping lists only get longer, never shorter? I had a meltdown where I called Ammon and cursed him out in the card aisle (I am the epitome of class), and I must have been radiating hatred, because the checker at Target didn't even bother to ask me how my day was going. It was plain to her it wasn't good. However, I knew a massage was only minutes away. An hour of sweet relaxation... and perhaps the chance to restore some small modicum of sanity.
This is getting painfully long, so I'm going to cut it off here and make the rehearsal/rehearsal dinner its own separate post. I promise it is much happier than set-up. Really.