2016, Part III

September

Well September was, for the vast majority, amazing!  This was our wedding month!! One of my goals for the first quarter of the year is to do an in-depth series detailing everything about our wedding so I won't write too much about it right now. It was so amazing to have all of our family and friends come together to celebrate our union.  Our ceremony went so well, the dress my mom made was perfect, our bridesmaids and groomsmen were amazing, our minister was amazing, everyone who all gave speeches were amazing and the weather was absolutely perfect. The venue was beautiful, the flowers were perfect, my bouquet was beyond stunning, Bill looked so classy, the DJ was on point, the food was delicious, and so on and so forth.  The one thing that didn't go well, which I haven't mentioned on any blog yet, was that Bill's mom got life-threateningly sick the day before the wedding, so she wasn't able to attend the wedding.  It put a real damper on the day. It didn't take away all of our joy, as it was the best day of our lives, but we were very worried about her and her presence was greatly missed.  That all being said, other than that major issue, the day was perfect in every way.

The day after the wedding, we headed to Hawaii for our honeymoon!  We were worried about Bill's mom, but she would never have forgiven herself if we delayed our trip on her account.  We had an incredible 8.5 days on the islands of Kauai and Maui.  More on this to come in my honeymoon recap posts!

After the trip, we got to meet up with my family for lunch in Dayton for a few hours before catching our flight back to DC. 

Slowly, life returned to normal.  We returned to work to boatloads of emails and work that had piled up, but we felt that newlywed glow! People kept asking me it felt different to be married and I thought it did instantly! I really didn't know what to do with myself without wedding planning and to be honest, I felt a bit depressed that everything we/I had worked so hard on for so many months was just over. I still feel this way sometimes.

The only other thing that I remember happening in September was volunteering at the National Book Festival for JLW.

October

Oh, October.  This was a month that was pretty darn good.

I started the month with my last Honor Flight trip of the year and it was a pretty great one. After the trip, I went for drinks with my friend Shawna who also volunteers.

One of the best moment of the year was seeing Adele in concert.  I had wanted to go so bad ever since the tickets went on sale and sold out instantly. The tickets on StubHub were just so expensive, even for the 400-level seats. It was killing me to not go, but I couldn't decide if I should spend that kind of money.  Eventually I decided that I would just go outside of the Verizon Center early on the day of the concert to see what I could find and I got an amazing seat for yes, a lot of money, but for less than what I had seen online. The show was life-changingly amazing.  She sounded exactly like she does on the radio, if not better.  As Tara said, it was seriously like a spiritual experience.  She was so funny and down-to-earth.  She talked a lot between each song. Normally this tends to annoy me, but with her, it was as if I was having a conversation with an old friend.  Her voice is so powerfully amazing. I wish I could have seen every one of her concerts. I'll stop going on and on about this because I will never adequately display how great she is.

Bill and I went on a "ghost tour" of Old Town, Alexandria with JLW.  It was actually pretty cheesy, but it was still fun. We learned more about local legends than ghosts, but it was fun.  Our tour leader was a man in traditional colonial garb who led us around the town while holding a lantern to light the way.

The next day, I returned to Old Town for OysterFest at Hank's with my friend Stephanie. I always enjoy that event because it's all-you-can-eat and drink but it's also very low key. I took the metro to get there and rode the trolley in, which was fun!

I saw Cinderella at the Kennedy Center with BJ.

We ended the month in San Diego for my now sister-in-law's wedding!   I intended to do a full post on this, but I'm not sure that will ever happen so I'm going to give a short recap here.  We flew in and checked into the nastiest hotel of our life.  The next day, we checked out and moved to an absolutely amazing hotel downtown.  San Diego is seriously beautiful!  I had no idea.  I had to work most of the first day so I toiled away at Starbucks.  That night we went to a traditional Hawaiian meal at Dom's family's house where we met all of his great family members who welcomed us so warmly. The next day was the wedding!  Sharon & Dom got married on a Hornblower yacht at sunset.  We all gathered at the dock and then were led onto the boat and given champagne.  Sharon was glowing, the ceremony was beautiful and emotional, the dinner was delicious (seriously, best steak I've ever had at a wedding and the cheese plate was to-die-for), and then Bill & I danced the night away on the outside dance floor. One of the best parts was that Bill's mom was finally recovered enough so she was able to come!! She and Bill finally danced their mother-son dance and there was not a dry eye in the house. We went to a hotel bar and then to a BBQ joint after the wedding.  The next day, we hung out with Bill's parents, went shopping and then to lunch. I squeezed in some time at the pool as the sun went down and then we went to dinner with the extended family at a yummy seafood place where I got a giant bucket of crab legs and lobster. On our last day in town, we woke up early to swim at Coronado in our wet suits that my brother got us as a wedding present.  It was freezing so that was a short-lived adventure. I got back, got ready and headed up to Temecula to meet one of my best friends, Angie!! She lives in LA so we met halfway at the wineries there.  We tried 3 different ones - Wilson Creek, where we had almond champagne, Old Europe and then the cutest one, Briar Rose. It felt like we were in a fairy tale!  It was so wonderful to get one-on-one time with her and really catch up.  The day ended too soon, though.  We grabbed In-n-Out, which was decidedly not as good as I remember and then I drove back to San Diego, took a shower, and we all headed to the airport!

Back in DC, we spent the rest of the month apartment hunting.  We saw about a 10 different apartments and finally settled on one!

Pausing here because I have a lot to say about the last 2 months of the year.  Catch up on the end of the year tomorrow!

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