Seaside, Pt. 1

We recently got back from a wonderful weekend of weddings (that's right, two in one weekend) and it has taken awhile to sort through all of the photos and fun stories to share here. Matt and I were on the same flight to ATL early on a Thursday, but parted ways in the airport; I continued on to Seaside, FL to meet up with my girlfriends while Matt stayed in Atlanta with his family. 

I went to FL to celebrate my dear friend Rachel, who was the friend that instigated many of my favorite college adventures and who encouraged me to come to Kenya with her. All of the girls in her wedding party had incredible stories to share about the special way Rachel had changed their lives, and our time with friends and family on the beach was one of the most joyful and relaxing weekends ever. 

We all stayed together in this lovely blue cottage, Mr. Cool Breeze and had a blast walking to the beach, getting some sun, and catching up on all of the weddings, moves, new homes, travels, and changes happening this year.

We dined out with a big group of significant others and wedding party, and then enjoyed a beach bonfire and smores that Rachel had lined up for the evening. 

We rehearsed on the beach then next morning, ate lunch at the Crab Trap, and then with the coolest beach bags and towels gifted from Rachel, we headed back out to the shore for swimming, volleyball, and laying out.

After getting plenty of sun, we cleaned up for the night, which is fun with that many good girlfriends around because it's like being at a spring fashion show with a whole crew of complimentary stylists helping you get gussied up for the night. 

The rehearsal dinner was on an outdoor patio and the weather could not have been more beautiful. Then we were all treated to a breathtaking sunset on the water- added to laughs with friends, live music, and a sweet slideshow and story-sharing time and I thought it was the perfect celebration for the happy couple.

But, the celebrating kept on going when we got our crew back to the cottage. 

We barricaded the bride in her room for a bit, threw up some pre-prepared party decorations, and set in to showering our bride with fun, gifts, and games. 

We stayed up way too late talking, but finally settled in for some beauty sleep. We woke up, put on our pretty floral robes (another sweet gift from the bride), and were treated to the sweetest breakfast hosted by Rachel's mom and aunt, who are so warm and fun to be with. 

They are impressive hostesses and came prepared with pretty table settings, printed name tags, flowers, and a big, delicious breakfast. We took time to share how much we loved Rachel and our well-wishes for her future as a Mrs. 

After breakfast, we packed our wedding bags, hopped on our private shuttle, and headed to the venue to start getting ready! We celebrated my dear friend and Italian adventurer, Molly, with singing, birthday cake, and then we chowed down on Chic-Fil-A nuggets while we worked on hair and makeup. 

Katie did a beautiful job with Rachel's hair, and it reminded me of how wonderful she was to me on my own wedding day. 

Rachel was gorgeous and I am always of the opinion that my friends are all so stunning! 

We all got into our dresses, posed for photos, and admired the incredible flowers Rachel had chosen for her day while we waited for the evening to start. Tune into the next post for the wedding details….

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