Wedding Recap…

So I have found a little time to myself finally. Figured I’d spend it at the computer recapping the past weekend rather than sleeping like my body is telling me to do.

All the pictures from Meg and Craig’s wedding can be found here.

The days prior to the wedding were just as stressful for me as they were for Meg and Craig, which is sad, because I was the best man and should have been there to help out more than the little I did. In my own defense though, life DID kinda happen. But come last Friday morning, I was oddly calm and ok with things. We started prepping the house with the last minute stuff and were up and ready to go when Meg’s family showed up to help. Thank the gods for them. There is no way we could have pulled the reception off if they hadn’t been there!

After getting dressed, we all made our way out to the Rancho Santa Margarita Lake for the ceremony. The lake has a gorgeous amphitheater area that overlooks the water. It made for the picture perfect back-drop for the wedding. No, really. Look:

Meg and Craig had decided to officiate their own ceremony since they were legally wed already in Vegas on August 1st, 2004. So this was the symbolic ceremony for the families and friends. They did a fairly non-traditional thing and included the 5 kids in the service where both Meg and Craig made vows to the kids and gave them each their own ring to wear as a symbol of their family’s unity. It was VERY touching and I don’t believe there was a dry eye to be seen.

After the service we hung around for a bit and snapped some photos in the traditional wedding way. I mean, we DID get all dressed up, so we may as well capture it for posterity while we were there! Glad we did too. There are some fabulous photos of everyone! The one I am most pleased with though, is this one:

I really do think that is the best photos of the four of us. Rarely do you find us all smiling at the same time! You can see it on all of our faces; this is a marriage that is simply meant to be.

But of course, the sun dropped and people wanted to party… so back to our house they all came for a great reception. Everyone seemed to have their fill of food and liquor without any of your typical reception (read drunken loser) issues.

It was indeed still Meg’s day to really shine, and shine she did:

Saturday was all about cleanup and more partying. Jean and I were up at some un-godly hour starting to clean, and the family showed up to help some more as well. Which was wonderful, but not entirely necessary. We did break from cleaning for a bit and went over to Meg and Craig’s place to watch them open their wedding presents, which was an amusement in and of its self! Here you can see Meg’s Dad, Dusty, and Steven are waiting for their handout of cash… which somehow made it’s way straight into Craig’s pocket…

After the presents we headed back home for more cleaning, until one of us had the fantastically lame and wondrous idea of continuing the party to help us finish off some of the food and beer we had left over. So we called some friends and kept it going through Saturday. And damn if we didn’t have a blast doing it! So, yeah, we were all tired, but honestly I think we were all still working on the energy of the previous week and evening.

At the least, Jean and I learned that we CAN entertain a large number of people in our house and back patio. Final count, we believe, is around 60 people. Approximately 50 adults and 10 kids of various ages. If we can do that, we can do anything!!!

Sunday came far too quickly, which meant more cleaning, laundry, and Joe and Paul’s wedding shower. Luckily it was held in Ladera Ranch, which is a stone’s throw from Rancho Santa Margarita, so it wasn’t too bad getting there. The shower its self was more of a pre-wedding party, which seemed to be fine by both Joe and Paul. They fluttered about like the social butterflies they are and made for a fabulous time of it. We actually stayed later than we had intended, but that was fine by us since we were having so much fun.

Like everything, though, all weekends must come to an end, and such did this one. I don’t remember ever really falling asleep this past weekend, so much as just passing out. Sunday night was no different.

In fact Monday night was no different either. But I blame Colleen for that. She called my cell as I was on my way home, with a superb idea of going out to dinner as her friend Scott was in town from North Carolina. In my weariness, I begrudgingly agreed and found myself at the Irvine spectrum around 6pm for some Neo-Thai cuisine. Luckily the company and food was well worth the effort. We had a blast chatting it up and just relaxing around drinks and good food.

Because of the way work has been recently, I have been entirely exhausted when getting home, and today was more proof of that. It seems now that I am on my way out, all the weird little issues are popping up and users just aren’t leaving me alone. I have done more work in the past two weeks than I think I did in all of June, July, and August combined.

What really bugs me about it all is that I have keenly noticed my level of support dropping just so I can get to all of the e-mails and voicemails I need to deal with, not to mention the transition stuff I am going to have to do at the end of this week and next, which of course includes finishing two quick start guides and a new version roll-out communication to our service customers. That last one alone is worth a good month of work to do right. Looking at it from a distance, I am pretty sure it is not all going to be completed before I leave. And that kinda bothers me.

Traci is working like a mad-woman trying to find a replacement for me, which has got her frazzled to her ends. I hate to see her have to do so much because of me and my choices. At the same time, I was pushing for a second person to come in the moment I knew I -might- be leaving. They just didn’t do anything about it. And now Traci is at the end of it as the hiring manager trying to get someone in and starting on Monday so there is a week’s worth of my time spent training them.

Next week is REALLY going to blow. My work load will double again just based on the amount of training I will need to do for anyone new who hires in for my job. I do not envy whomever they bring in. I think next week will be the first time at this job that I have ever had a back-log of issues. I truly don’t believe I can answer everything AND train someone. A ton of what I do is all mindless monotony, but I am at the point where i can do it so fast that those level of issues are manageable. Trying to train someone on some of this means slowing down. And slow is not going to fly with my customers. (Some of them will call every 2 minutes until someone pics up, all the while leaving voicemails that we will chase trying to get back to them.) So, yeah, next week is gonna be ugly.

The GOOD news is that Jean and I will be able to head up to Santa Maria on the Monday of Thanksgiving week since I now have that off. It will give us a chance to spend some time with George and his new wife Kathy at their new home. (Ok Kathy isn’t exactly -new- but I figure within the year is good enough, and the house has been theirs about as long as we have been in our new place, but you get the idea.)
PLUS, that always means more Andrew Murray Syrahs are coming home and hopefully a few new discoveries as well. Because you CAN’T go up to Santa Maria and NOT go tasting. (Yes, that most likely means more pictures for my wine tasting galleries as well.)

All in all, it has been quite the busy month, and is proving to be just as busy through the new year.