May 11, 2012

Friday Favorites: Bridesmaids Edition!

TGIF! This week's Friday Favorites comes with a bit of a twist. Wedding planning is rolling along (mostly) smoothly, and a few weeks ago, I finally got to what may have been the best part yet: I had the pleasure of asking six of my very favorite girls in the world to be my bridesmaids. Although I left our final number of bridesmaids/groomsmen up to Dan, I was more than a little concerned that he would go with five, and there's no way I could have done this without any of the six girls who I chose. These friends are each so amazing and have been more like sisters to me since I've known them. They have gotten me through some tough stuff in the past few years, and I can't imagine anything better than to celebrate our (re)marriage with them by my side. I am so thrilled and lucky that all six of them said yes and will be (getting ready with me and keeping me sane and making my wedding day fabulous and) standing with me on September 28. I am practically beside myself with excitement to have the perfect excuse to spend extra time with all of them in the next few months!

While I do love each and every one of these girls like sisters, I am lucky that one actually is! This is Dan's older sister T, the only sister in a family of four brothers and a wonderful mama to our two cute nephews and beautiful niece. She is so sweet and I'm excited that even though she lives far away in Florida, she will spending most of the summer in our hometown with her kiddos, while she and her hubby are building a new house. I can't wait to see her more often and spend some time being a sister and an aunt!

It's a little tough to get past this terribly old-school picture (taken on a bus somewhere in the state of Texas, I believe), but this is my high school bff (isn't that what they were called in those days?) L. She and I met as freshmen and bonded over late night swim practices, long bus rides to swim meets and choir competitions, doing everything but paying attention in AP physics, countless sleepovers in her basements with friends, and lots of classic teenage angst over boys. She was the artist behind some of the best birthday cards I ever received (and I've kept every one), a few fantastic mix CDs, and several pillowcases, t-shirts, and Lucky Charms boxes overflowing with swim team spirit. I am so thankful we have stayed in touch since graduation, even though she has spent many of the past few years living in Germany and can now be found in the great (but far away) state of California.

This lovely lady is a wonderful friend from college with whom I share not just an alma mater, but a name! M is also a fraternity brother of mine, has the best shoe collection I've ever seen, spends her days being a super-smart scientist, and emits the cutest hiccups known to mankind. She is one tough cookie and a fiercely loyal friend who I know I can call at any hour of the day. Even though she, too, lives entirely too far away (are you sensing a very sad pattern here?), we stay in as close touch as our crazy schedules will allow, and I get so excited to see her every time she makes it back to the east coast.

While I am very much in love with the little one in this picture, my next bridesmaid is her mama, my fellow military wife N. I have known her for the shortest time out of all these ladies, but we have become fast friends, and I couldn't be more grateful. This girl is the best of role models in every way: she's an amazing mother, a supportive and strong military spouse, and somehow manages to have it all together. I am so lucky our husbands found each other and introduced us, and that she and I have been able to share so much in the past year. Perhaps best of all, N will be almost 8 months pregnant with Little #2 on our wedding day!

When I met this gorgeous girl my senior year of college, I believe my first thought was "So that's where the other half of my brain has been all these years!" A can finish my sentences thoughts like nobody's business, shares so many of my passions and values, and always knows exactly what I need to hear. She is the best kind of wild and crazy and fun, the most incredible photographer I know (seriously, check her out), and not only does she understand me better than I understand myself, but she absolutely "gets" my sweet husband's sense of humor as well. I have not seen her in far too long (are you keeping track? You can check Rhode Island off the list for this one!) but absolutely cannot wait until we are reunited.

Last but never least, a girl you have heard about constantly on this little blog of mine... my maid-but-soon-to-be-matron of honor M. I am not sure there are enough words to describe how lucky I've been to have this amazing girl by my side for the past several years. We actually met my freshman year of college, but didn't get to know each other well until we were reintroduced two years later. Since then, I can safely say that I owe this lady my life -- she has held me up and kept me sane through the past few years and I am absolutely serious that I have no idea what I would do without her. She knows me like no one else (not even my hubby!), gives the very best advice, and always knows how to make me smile. She was my one and only bridesmaid when Dan and I first got married, and I can't imagine doing it again without her right next to me... although first, I am so excited to focus on HER wedding in July!

I am beyond lucky to have each of these girls in my life, and I cannot wait for all seven of us to be together -- that alone is going to make September 28 a day to remember!
Happy Friday everyone!



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