Hard to believe, huh?
Andrew and I made an epic four-beds-in-four-nights trip to Virginia to attend the recent wedding of my little brother, Joshua. It’s so hard to believe he’s married!
Josh is–of course–still his impetuous and often prone-to-emotional-outbursts self, but he has also showed some serious growth and forethought about his future. Hannah, who is quiet, strong and mature beyond her years, is truly his perfect match and I’m so thankful he found her. They’re both still at Liberty University and have a small apartment off campus.
While I’m on the topic, my other little brother, Aaron, has also demonstrated increased maturity recently. He’s continuing to freelance in the media industry as a ‘camera guy’ (I feel so stupid that I don’t even really know the correct term for what he does) and even landed a gig on an actual show on an actual network. He’s planning leave the nest this fall and relocate to Atlanta to be closer to the action.
They both have a lot of growing up still to do (#lifeishard), and I’m excited to see what the next few months and years bring for them.
Back to the wedding.
First of all, my parents deserve a MEDAL for the way they handled the entire thing from start to finish. They quickly got on board with a plan that seemed rash and my mom was elbow-deep in wedding planning before she knew it. Among other reasons, my parents’ proximity to the wedding (the bride is from Florida) caused my mom to take point on all plans. She and Hannah teamed up and spent all summer Craigslisting, borrowing and DIYing just about everything they could get their hands on. My mom decided Pinterest was a double-edged sword; every time she got on she came up with a new decoration for the wedding!
Andrew and I departed on Friday, spent the night in State College at a college friend’s parents’ house, and then finished the drive to Virginia the next morning after breakfast at the Waffle Shop. Of course. (Must schedule a visit to Penn State this fall.)
We arrived in Gordonsville on Saturday in time for the ‘pre-wedding picnic,’ a super-relaxed version of the traditional rehearsal dinner. Any and all out of town guests were invited, and we mingled under a pavilion while the bride’s family grilled hot dogs, hamburgers and chicken.
The wedding took place at Wolf Trap Farm, which is close to Josh and Hannah’s school and only about an hour and a half from my parents’ house in Manassas. Beginning Sunday morning, a small army of family members pitched in–with my mom at the helm–and turned this plain barn into a reception-ready space filled with twinkle lights, lanterns, burlap, lace and candles.
My mom, who makes a mean hot pepper jelly, decided to make jars of jam as favors. She and Hannah even picked the blueberries!
The couple planned to end their night with sparklers, so we set up a table and I painted a sign so guests would know what time to line up.
Soon, it was time for the ceremony! We all quickly cleaned up and got in our seats. I couldn’t believe how emotional Josh got, tears welling up in his eyes when he saw Hannah and having trouble keeping his voice strong as he said his vows. Shout-out to my dad who made the cross where they stood!
While the wedding party stayed for photos, the guests headed to the reception for appetizers.
Finally, the bridesmaids and groomsmen began to file into the barn, followed by Josh and Hannah. They had their first dance before it was time for dinner.
They chose barbecue and sides, with sweet tea and lemonade, which was perfect for the occasion. There were giant tubs of water bottles and beer, with mixed drinks and sangria (my mom’s favorite!) as well.
They got a cake from a local bakery and my mom made additional cake pops and cupcakes, too. Her best friend, Connie, decorated the cake and stand with baby’s breath and flowers just before the ceremony started. I painted the sign above the cake.
I was so glad all my aunts and uncles on the Rosene side came, as I don’t see them very often. While not all the cousins came, it was so nice to visit with the ones who did, especially Daniel.
The wedding was gorgeous and simply wonderful. It seemed like everyone had a great time, from dancing to feeding the nearby horses to visiting with family and friends. I spent the evening sitting and talking to family; getting together only for weddings just isn’t frequent enough!
I spent Monday packing up, driving to my parents’ house, unpacking two cars and a trailer full of wedding supplies and visiting with family and friends. Andrew was able to work at a Moog site a few hours’ drive from the wedding and see the eclipse that afternoon before he joined me in Manassas that night. I would have liked to stay another day to just visit with my parents after all the wedding chaos, but we had to go back to New York the next morning.