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Adventures in floral arrangments

I’ve been itching to write this post because, deep down, I’m pretty proud of and excited about my newfound flower-arranging “skills.” Javi had been looking forward to going to the Santiago flower market, which is the hub where all growers bring their flowers to sell either in bulk or by the bouquet. There are three enormous buildings that reminded me of the cattle buildings at the Kentucky State Fair filled to the brim with bunches of colorful flowers. The growers would either stack them on the floor in 3 or 4-ft piles or put the more delicate varieties in enormous buckets of water. I had a field day with my camera, and was especially glad that I brought it along when we stumbled across a trio playing some folk music in the greenery building. While Javi and Alex hauled bushels of wedding flora to the van, I happily snapped away and listened to the music. Tenia muchas ganas de escribir este post, estoy muy orgullosa de mi recien encontrada habilidad de crear decoraciones florales. Javi tenia muchas ganas de visitar el mercado de flores de Santiago, que es el lugar donde todos los productores de flores traen sus productos para vender al por mayor y por racimos. Habian 3 galpones enormes que me recordaban de los edificios de la Feria Estatal de Kentucky, y todos estaban llenos de flores. Los vendedores acomodaban las flores en el suelo en pilas de 3 a 4 pies de alto, y las flores mas delicadas en cubetas de agua. Yo lo pase muy bien con mi camara, y estaba especialmente agradecida de haberla traido cuando me encontre con un trio de musicos tocando folklore en uno de los galpones. Mientras Javi y Alex cargaban montones de flores para el matrimonio en la van, yo felizmente sacaba fotos mientras escuchaba musica.
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We kept the flowers in a cool spot in water until Friday. After a long day of setting up the entire reception hall, we came back home and realized we had a long night ahead of us – we still had to make 25 centerpieces! All we had was a photo as a model, so we took the foam oasis, cut them all up to fit the little bowls that they sat in, filled them with water, and got to work stabbing them with the greenery and flowers. We were conservative at first to ensure we had enough flowers for all 25 centerpieces plus a large one for the head table. With the help of Javier’s aunt Ingrid and cousins Rodrigo and Francisca, we were able to finish the basis for all 25 by 1AM. Mantuvimos las flores en un lugar fresco y en agua hasta el viernes. Luego de un largo dia decorando el lugar de la fiesta, volvimos a casa y nos dimos cuenta que teniamos una larga noche frente a nosotros – todavia teniamos que hacer 25 centros de mesa! Solo teniamos una foto como modelo, asi que tomamos los oasis, los cortamos para que entraran en sus bandejas, los llenamos con agua, y nos pusimos a enterrarles flores y verdes. Al principio fuimos conservadores para asegurarnos que los 25 centros de mesa tuvieran suficientes flores. Con la ayuda de la tia de Javier, Ingrid, y sus primos, Rodrigo y Francisca, pudimos terminar la base de los 25 centros de mesa a las 1 de manana.
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On the morning of the wedding day Javier and I woke up at 7AM and went back down to the centerpieces. We had finished the base for each one but we had hardly made a dent in the flowers, so I set to work filling them out so that the sponge and the tray were completely invisible. I was so surprised at how they turned out – each one was different but they were all beautiful. Maca picked out a beautiful variety of flowers and greenery filler, which really made the job of putting it together fairly easy. While I worked on finishing the center pieces, Javier worked on making Maca’s bouquet. How often do brides get to carry a bouquet made by their own brother? En la manana del matrimonio, Javier y yo nos levantamos a las 7am y nos pusimos a trabajar en los centros de mesa. Teniamos la base para cada uno y nos quedaba mucho material por usar, asi que mi trabajo era llenarlos lo mas posible para esconder completamente la esponja y las bandejas. Me sorprendio como quedaron – todos eran diferentes y al mismo tiempo todos quedaron hermosos. Maca escogio hermosas flores y verdes, lo que hizo el trabajo relativamente facil. Mientras yo terminaba los centros de mesa, Javier trabajo en hacer el bouquet para Macarena. Cuantas novias llevan un bouquet hecho por su propio hermano?
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The last things that we finished that morning before the wedding ceremony were the bouquet and the head table centerpiece. We took them all to the reception hall, placed them on each of the tables and filled each of the centerpieces with three battery-powered candles. They looked incredible, as did the bouquet! I never thought I’d be one to arrange floral centerpieces, but I wound up fully immersed in the project! Las ultimas cosas que terminamos esa manana antes de la boda fueron el bouquet y el centro de mesa para la mesa principal. Los llevamos todos al centro de eventos, los pusimos en cada mesa y los adornamos aun mas con las velas electricas. Se veian increibles! y el bouquet tambien! Nunca pense que yo trabajaria en decorar los centros de mesa, pero termine de lleno en el proyecto y muy feliz con el resultado!
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The ones that look like they are on fire have the candles lit up inside – I loved that effect! 

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The centerpiece ^^ with leftover roses from Maca’s bouquet

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