The Week Before the Wedding… Getting Ready and Setting Up the Fil-Am!

By: niftyba

Jun 27 2008

Category: Uncategorized


… I was pretty strange. I wasn’t freaking out in the way most brides do. I kept obsessing over the wrong things, i.e. the small things instead of the big. Yes, I procrastinated on many of my projects, but I personally felt that I couldn’t do them without my bridesmaids there. Brandi was the last to come into town on Tuesday, and that’s when it all started. I had already finished making CD favors, but I still had to decorate the cupcake stand, make pew decorations, make paper pom poms, print programs, buy drinks, decorate… And you know me… I can’t let anyone else do anything. That was one of my biggest problems in planning the wedding: I was extremely introverted when it came to doing anything, and you had to pull my hair in order for me to say anything OR get anything done. Everyone kept telling me to delegate, which is something I quickly had to learn how to do. Luckily, I had people, “doers.” I am definitely not a doer. Ana and Krista took care of the cake, Jenna asked her dad to do printing, Brandi helped pick out my second wedding gown, Ana and Krista helped me with the florist. I am a scared person, and I did not go to any vendor without someone with me. I am extremely grateful, and that is why they were my bridesmaids. Plus, I had family. Lots and lots of family. They really helped (and were willing) to take up many tasks and set up the Fil-Am. There were a few issues that came up in the last days, but in the end, it all ended up perfectly. At around 1:45pm on May 24, I knew I had to stop caring, let go, and enjoy myself.

Ana’s house became HQ #2, which is good, because they’ve got lots of girls there AND a comfortable work space. Ana, Brandi, Krista, Ceci, Merce, Maria, and I did a lot, and Mrs. Hernandez even stepped in to help! This was done three days before the wedding… I should do these crafts earlier. :/ (First four pictures from Mercedes.)

Not a very flattering picture, but this is the only one I have of my cousin Michael and his girlfriend Melissa. They arrived in Pensacola quite a while before the wedding, and they were extremely helpful. I’d like to call them “drink fairies,” but I’m not sure how they’d respond to that. They helped with scouting out the lowest prices on drinks, and even started purchasing drinks with their own money!! I was so blown away. They also helped with putting together table numbers with Henry, and with majorly decorating the Fil-Am.

Decorating the Fil-Am was hard for me. I am a rug, walk all over me most of the time, but seriously, on my wedding day, I should have a say in what is used or put in the reception. Yeah, right. My grandmother and my grandfather were the hardest people for me to deal with, and throughout the whole planning process, our altercations had been very interesting. If I had a problem with anybody, it would be them, which made it doubly difficult because I love them and I knew that they were only trying to help in the ways they knew how. Too bad they had very traditional opinions that opposed to my attempts to be different. I’ll have to make a post about them later. It was so crazy. There were definite elements of the wedding that screamed tacky, and I had to stop caring or I’d storm off. But for now, know that they got to use the funky arch and candle holders from Grandma’s sewing room, which was allowed by me anyways because Grandma made a sad face, and who could resist saying “sure.”

One of the scariest problems that arose (actually, it was probably THE scariest) was the absence of real orchids. Yeah, I should have learned that e-mailing my father to buy something was not the route to go, I should have contacted Reena instead (she was the buyer for the wedding, and she did an awesome job). I found out two days before the wedding that we weren’t getting real orchids shipped in because an order was not put in. I panicked, and then went off in search for faux orchids while Reena contacted a florist. It turned out to be extremely expensive to get orchids in Pensacola, so we went with a pink and fushia (sp?) orchid that Brandi and I found at Hobby Lobby. It was 50% off, too, so we spent about $35 on the amount we needed (and we had extra). Life-saving find. I don’t know what we would have done if we hadn’t found replacements. We had an awesome orchid assembling factory. Luckily, they perfectly matched the impromptu pink table runners that Kyle and Ana worked on. The table runners were a crazy debacle because we had to cut them all, make sure we had enough for the tables, and then iron seams instead of seaming them with the binding I had purchased because that was making a sticky mess. (Oh, and Kyle did an awesome job of ironing all of the table clothes- he was right, they did look better that way!)

Even worse was getting enough table clothes. Grandpa put plastic table clothes on all of the tables before I arrived to set up, and I was, like, “Umm, no.” That was the first thing I got mad at. No way was I going to have plastic tablecloths, and in a rare turn, I immediately demanded cloth table cloths (yes, it is true- sometimes I can be demanding). And even after we got the table cloths, we did not have enough rectangle ones that were presentable, making it difficult for Brandi and I to dress all of the tables. In the end, I knew a few tables had plastic on them because we ran out of tables, but as long as most of them looked good, fine by me.  

Also, Brandi and I had almost run ourselves to the ground trying to find brown tulle. It turns out that a month before, when I had purchased all of the brown tulle from the fabric store in Cantonment, I had purchased ALL of the brown tulle in Pensacola. I didn’t ask to order more because I didn’t know how much I needed, and I didn’t think brown tulle would be hard to find. Wrong. Brandi and I went everywhere, it was very depressing. No one had any, and then we started going crazy. Thankfully in the end (and after I gave up the issue), Grandma and a friend made chair bows out of some light brown fabric, and that was that.

Hanging up the paper lanterns was something new to the Fil-Am. So new, in fact, that people later referred to them as “paper balloons.” No one had ever hung anything from the ceiling before, and doing so was definitely a learning experience. I don’t think it would have been completed without the diligence of Uncle Dan and Michael. Plus, they were the tallest. I wasn’t able to use the light bulbs (which probably would have added a lot more light, but I am so thankful!!

We had a lunch break of Burger King, which was right down the road. Yummy. I had fries. Such a health-concious bride.

We were so lucky to be able to set up the Fil-Am before the wedding day. If we had to do that the day-of, I would have… screamed and hid behind the stage curtain all morning. It was really nice to have everyone’s help, and we got so much accomplished. We did the decorations, set up all of the plates and utensils, did all of the tables, put up lanterns, put the trees behind the cake stand, and even made sure my computer worked with the sound system (that was Billy’s job when he was there!). My dad also made a “Billy and Ali” sign that was in the foyer. I couldn’t fix the wonky light in the women’s bathroom, or make sure all of the table cloths were clean, or take down the random televisions on the wall, or set up all the drinks, but in the end, it was okay, and I had to let those things go. It turned out nice.

So, thank you to everyone who was there. Seriously.


2 comments on “The Week Before the Wedding… Getting Ready and Setting Up the Fil-Am!”

  1. wow ali! i didn’t know you had that much going on for your wedding! I’ve been reading your posts for some random helpful hints and planning and stuff… so interesting!!!! your wedding looked fantastic! scary stuff! not having your flowers in at all!

    anyway it seems all very expensive to me but Thomas’ and my project now is to get Molino looking wedding-pretty!! and I can’t wait

  2. Your wedding looks like it’s just going to be gorgeous – and you had help too, which is always a plus. Best of luck to you! And good choice of pink for the wedding – the color of love, not lust. Not that there’s anything wrong with a little lust from time to time.

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