It was around 3:00 pm the afternoon of our wedding when one of my groomsmen called my cell phone to ask where I was. I told him I was in my room getting ready but the truth was I was up there trying to calm down my nerves. My nerves weren't kicking in because I wasn't ready to get married, but the sheer fact that this was the biggest day of my life was cause for some pretty anxious feelings. This would finally be the moment I'd see all of my wife's hard work come together; where we could finally celebrate being husband and wife with our friends and family (and let's just say that I was involved in some aspects of the planning process but it was her amazing taste and talents that put most of our wedding together).
When I hung up the phone with my groomsmen, I headed downstairs where surprise, surprise all of my friends where waiting there for me with beers in hand and a well-stocked cooler (just for the record, I'm not much of a drinker so it was all for these guys!) Windows rolled down and music blasting we all drove over to the wedding venue in my friend's Denali. The room, which we called our 'man cave' was something you'd expect Hugh Hefner to be hanging around in. No, it wasn't filled with Playboy bunnies but the walls were floor to ceiling dark wood, the fire place was blazing, stacks of books covered the walls and antique furniture sat throughout the room. We all grouped together and shared stories from our college days and the night before when all of my friends decided to party until the early morning hours.
While my good friend Dave helped me with my boutonniere, I figured it was time for all of the guys to open the gifts I had purchased for them. I decided that a traditional flask that most guys seem to give as gifts to their attendants didn't quite represent our lifestyles. After all we aren't college kids trying to sneak booze into football games anymore! I had found a great website that sold wine kits with personalized wood boxes, stainless steel bottle openers and wine stoppers and knew it would be perfect for my friends.
My amazing wife wrapped all of the guy's gifts for me in this blue wrapping paper, the night before the wedding and bought each of us a small individual bottle of Crown Royal. When we got to the groom's suite that afternoon all of the gifts and little bottles were waiting for us guys. We used the Crown Royal to make one last toast before we headed out for photos.
I also gifted my Dad, who is a watch aficionado, with a great black leather watch similar to the one I bought myself for the wedding. I made a small speech thanking my Dad for always being there for me, and we shared a few sentimental moments together right before I received word that it was time for the first look. As I made my way out the the venue's terrace, I faced the water waiting for my wife to arrive. I thought back at how amazing she is and how lucky I am to have her and before I knew it, there was a little tap on my butt and a beautiful voice said "Hi".
Stop by tomorrow morning for photos of our first look and how we really felt about seeing one another before the ceremony! To read about what the girls were doing upstairs to get ready, check out this post here.