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My big brother’s wedding! – La boda de mi hermano mayor!

As promised, here are some details about Ian and Andrea’s over-the-top BEAUTIFUL wedding!

Como prometimos, aqui van algunos detalles de la hermosisima boda de Ian y Andrea!

So before I get into this, let me explain that I was a bridesmaid (so fun!), the wedding photographer, and I sang Ave Maria during the ceremony and Dixie Chicks’ Godspeed during the Mother / Son dance, so my day was super packed but SO so so amazing. I made it really clear to Ian and Andrea when they asked me to do the photography that I didn’t want to feel like I was working, I wanted to really enjoy watching my brother get married and party at the reception and they absolutely fulfilled their promise. I got to process down the aisle as a bridesmaid and enjoy the wedding from the front row while Javi took care of the ceremony photos and they never asked me to take any photos I wouldn’t have taken anyway, so I really got to soak it all in. I never felt like I was working – I mean I would have had my camera anyway, so it was really fun to be their official photographer! Antes de meterme de lleno a los detalles, dejenme explicar que en esta boda fui dama de honor, fotografa oficial, y tambien cante Ave Maria durante la ceremonia y Godspeed de las Dixie Chicks durante la fiesta, asi que my dia estuvo muy ocupado pero fue increible. Fui muy clara con Ian y Andre sobre la fotografia, yo no queria sentir que estaba trabajando. Queria disfrutar del matrimnio de mi hermano y pasarlo bien durante la fiesta, y asi fue. Pude caminar en la iglesia con el resto de las damas de honor y disfrutar de la ceremonia en la primera fila mientras Javi sacaba fotos y ellos nunca me pidieron sacar fotos que yo no hubiese sacado, asi que pude vivir todo al maximo. Nunca me senti trabajando – osea, hubiese tenido mi camara conmigo de todas maneras, asi que fue entretenido ser la fotografa oficial!
So ALL WEEK Ian, Andi and I had been monitoring the weather to see what Friday was looking like – I was hoping for partly cloudy (very helpful for wedding photos) but Ian was longing for clear, blue skies. Unfortunately for both of us, the weather report all week long for Friday was a 50% chance of scattered thunderstorms and it was raining all week, so things weren’t looking too good for the wedding forecast. On Thursday night after the rehearsal dinner the heavens opened up on Chicago and the CRAZIEST thunderstorm I have ever witnessed dragged on for 4 hours in the middle of the night! I didn’t sleep from 2am til 4am, and during that time I got a little video of the lightning (below). The next morning when I opened our enormous hotel window I was greeted with the clearest, most beautiful blue sky I’ve ever seen. It was basically the second worst weather forecast for me and my camera but absolutely everything Ian wanted, which was by far more important than my lust for good wedding photos (which we got anyway, so everyone was happy!). The rain had also cleared up some of the humidity and cooled things down a bit, so it was a delightful morning! Toda la semana, Ian y Andrea habian estado monitoreando el tiempo para ver como iba a ser el Viernes – Yo queria que estubiera un poquito nublado (muy bueno para las fotos) pero Ian queria totalmente despejado. Para mala suerte para los dos, el pronostico toda la semana era 50% de posibilidades de tormenta electrica y llovio toda la semana, asi que las cosas no se veian tan promisorias para el Viernes. El Jueves en la noche despues de la cena los cielos se tornaron gris y una gran tormenta electrica cayo en Chicago. La mas grande que he visto y duro unas 4 horas en la mitad de la noche! No pude dormir desde las 2 am hasta las 4 am, y durante ese tiempo hize un video de la tormenta (ver abajo). A la manana siguiente cuando abri las cortinas del hotel fui bienvenida con un cielo despejado y muy azul. Practicamente el 2do peor tiempo para mi y mi camara pero era lo que Ian queria, y eso era mas improtante que mis fotos (igual pude sacar buenas fotos asi que no importo). La lluvia alivio un poco el calor asi que fue una manana estupenda!
The bridesmaids all had hair and makeup appointments in the morning, then we all rode over to the church in a trolley they rented for the day. To transport the guests from the hotel to the church and back, Ian and Andi rented a double decker bus (so you can see why they were hoping for clear skies) and the wedding party got to ride in the trolley all afternoon. The guys came after the ladies (my brother was ADAMANT about not seeing / hearing Andrea before the wedding) and then it was wedding time! Las damas de honor tenian sus reservas apra maquillaje y peinado en la manana, despues todas nos fuimos a la iglesia en un trolley que arrendaron por el dia! Para transportar a los invitados del hotel a la iglesia y de vuelta, Ian y andi arrendaron un bus de dos pisos (por eso queria buen tiempo) y los novios junto con los amigos mas cercanos usamos el trolley toda la tarde. Ian no queria ver a Andi hasta la ceremonia asi que separamos hombres y mujeres y los hombres llegaron a la iglesia despues de nosotras para evitar cualquier problema! Una vez que llegaron…..tiempo de casarse! 
mom and me in the trolley on the way to the church!
The aisle in 4th Presbyterian Church is the longest I’ve ever seen and I was the first one down with my escort Greg Willis. There were 12 other bridesmaids and 11 other groomsmen plus around 200 guests, so by the time I was in position I couldn’t see the bride process down the aisle!! I could, however, see my brother’s face and I’ve never seen anyone so happy and lovestruck. Andrea is one of the most beautiful women, inside and out, that I know and she was an especially stunning bride. Her dress was unlike any other I’ve ever seen! As I mentioned in the previous post, as the soloist I got a spectacular view of the couple from above while my Aunt Marian delivered the homily. I got to see both of their faces and everyone else with their eyes glued on the happy couple which was such an amazing experience. After the homily I sang Ave Maria (first time singing it with an organ, so that was fun!) and then it was back to the pew until it was time to recess down the aisle. All in all, a flawless, gorgeous and memorable ceremony. El pasillo de la iglesia 4ta Presbiteriana era el mas largo que he visto y yo fui la primera en recorrelo junto con Greg Willis. Habian 12 damas de honor y 11 amigos del novio mas 200 invitados, asi que una vez que llegue al frente no pude ver a las demas parejas caminando por el pasillo! Lo que si pude ver fue la cara de mi hermano , muy feliz y enamorado. Andrea es muy bonita por dentro y por fuera y yo se que ella tambien estaba muy emocionada y que se veria preciosa. Su vestido era diferente a todos los que he visto! Como dije en un post anterior, como cante en la ceremonia pude ir al balcon del coro y tener una vista espectacular de la pareja y mi tia Marian haciendo la predica. Pude ver las caras de ambos y todos los invitados con su vista fija en la nueva pareja. Luego de la predica cante Ave Maria (primera vez que cante con organo, fue muy entretenido!) y despues de vuelta a la banca hasta que era tiempo de caminar por el pasillo de neuvo y salir de la iglesia. Fue una ceremonia preciosa, perfecta, y que nunca olvidare.
After Ian and Andrea made their first appearance as husband and wife outside of the church on Michigan Avenue, it was photo time right away. We hopped back in the trolley (with the groomsmen this time) which was well-stocked with 2 coolers full of champagne, bud light and tequila. We went straight to the Lake Michigan beach where we took a few photos and I almost died when 2 bikers came within inches of me and my camera. Once Javier recovered from the heart attack of seeing me almost get run over and we shot all the poses we wanted by the lake we headed over to Wrigley Field to get some a few photos under the sign. Those turned out really cool and I can’t wait to share them! Our final destination was a bridge right next to the hotel where the reception was being held and I basically swooned over the light the entire time we took photos there. They are, in my humble and very unbiased opinion, a-m-a-z-i-n-g and I seriously can’t wait to show them all off. The few that I’ve shared here are ones I’ve already released on my facebook fan page, but I’ll put more up on my photography blog / website as soon as they are ready! Luego de que Ian y Andrea aparecieran por primera vez como marido y mujer afuera de la iglesia en Michigan Avenue, era tiempo de sacar fotos. Nos subimos al trolley (con los amigos de Ian y Andi) y teniamos coolers con champana, cerveza, y tequila. Fuimos directo al lago Michigan donde tomamos algunas fotos y casi muero atropellada por 2 ciclistas que pasaron a centimetros de mi camara. Una vez que Javier se recupero del ataque al corazon despues de ver que casi tengo un accidente, sacamos todas las fotos en ese lugar y nos fuimos a Wrigley Field (el estadio de baseball de los Chicago Cubs) a sacar mas fotos bajo el letrero del estadio. Esas fotos salieron muy buenas y espero tenerlas listas pornto para compartirlas! Nuestro destino final fue un puente al lado del hotel donde era la fiesta y aprovechamos las buenas condicinoes de luz para sacar mas fotos. Son, en mi humilde opinion, in-cre-i-bles y no puedo esperar mas para poder compartirlas. Las pocas que he mostrado estan en mi pagina de facebook, pero pronto pondre mas en my blog de fotografia y mi website cuando esten listas! 
From my aunt Shelley's cell phone - a gorgeous pic of Ian and Andi on Michigan Avenue
In the trolley!
The cocktail hour followed the 2 hours of photo time and trolley partying. Now if you’ll think back to when I described Ian and Andrea’s first meeting and then remember the napkin I mentioned that he wrote his name and number on, then picture around 1,000 (?) napkins with “Ian – brunch tomorrow?” and then his number printed on them for the cocktail hour! It was beyond perfect. Hopefully he doesn’t get a million calls from random folks now that his number has been floating around with a couple hundred tipsy wedding guests and their cocktails! La hora de cocktail emepzo luego de las 2 horas de tomar fotos y fiestear en el trolley. Si recuerdan mi descripcion de como Ian y Andrea se conocieron y se acuerdan de la servilleta que mencione que Ian escribio su numero de telefono…bueno imaginence mil servilletas con la frace “Desayuno manana?” y el numero de telefono impreso en ellas! Fue perfecto. Espero que Ian no reciba un monton de llamadas de numeros que no conoce porque alguien encontro servilletas en la basura!
the napkin! Obviously I had to edit out the end of the number...not putting that out on the internet!!
After dinner and toasts (Andrea had a maid and matron of honor, her sisters, and Ian had 2 best men) Andrea and her dad danced the jitterbug for the father/daughter dance (SO cute!!!!) and then dad played guitar while I sang Godspeed for Ian and mom. That’ll go down as one of my favorite moments in my life. Then it was party time…and I’ve never attended such an awesome party! One of my brother’s groomsmen is a DJ in LA and he flew out one of his friends he DJs with to play music all night which was perfect because he knew what Ian, Andrea and all their friends love to hear. There was a photobooth in an outside room and mini desserts, cupcakes and late night snacks (onion rings and burgers!) for anyone in need of some solid sustenance. The bars were open and flowing all night and Javi and I had a special stash of Firefly Sweet Tea vodka (thanks aunt Shelley and uncle Warren!) so basically everything was just right. I got about 1,500 photos of the reception (whaaaaat!) and don’t remember taking the last 300 of them. The hotel bar was open til 1AM so we kept the party going there until 1:30 when Javi and I took a taxi with my parents to Eggsperience, which is where we pick up from the last post. Despues de la cena y los brindis (Las 2 hermanas de Andrea, los 2 mejores amigos de Ian y el papa de Andrea) la novia bailo el primer baile con su papa (muy tierno!) y despues yo y mi papa cantamos Godspeed para Ian y mi mama. Ese sera uno de los momentos favoritos de mi vida. Y luego tiempo de fiesta…..nunca fui a una fiesta tan entretenida.! Uno de los amigos de mi hermano es un DJ en Los Angeles y el trajo a su amigo que tambien es DJ para que pusiera la musica…pusieron la musica perfecta y exactamente lo que los novios queria oir. Habia un lugar para sacarse fotos y tambien postres, quequitos y snacks para aquellos que necesitaban algo de comer. El bar estubo abierto toda la noche y yo y Javier teniamos una botella de FireFly Te Dulce Vodka especial para nosotros (gracias Shelley y Warren!!) asi que todo estaba perfecto. Saque como 1,500 fotos durante la fiesta! y no me acuerdo haber tomado las ultimas 300. El bar del hotel estuvo abierto hasta la 1am asi que seguimos la fiesta ahi hasta las 1:30am cuando Javi, mis papas y yo tomamos un taxi a Eggsperience (desayuno), como explicamos en el post pasado. 
CLASSIC photo at Eggsperience with the fam!
There really are no words to accurately express how much fun we had this past weekend. Ian and Andrea’s wedding was as close to perfect, in my opinion, as any wedding can ever get. They are such a special couple and I’m so proud to call Ian and Andrea my siblings! No tengo palabras para expresar correctamente lo entrenido que fue el fin de semana. El matrimonio fue los mas cercano a la perfeccion. Son una parejam uy especial y estoy muy orgullosa de llamar Ian y Andi mis hermanos!

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