I had heard brides many-a-time complain about their wedding party being late or missing the rehearsal entirely. This prompted me to try to plan smart. I asked our wedding party to show up for a pseudo-mandatory lunch before the rehearsal. I’m pleased to announce that this was such great foresight, as we ended up with no late arrivals for the rehearsal.

Erick had to pick up one of his groomsman, Mark, from the airport. His brother, Michael, joined him in the task leaving myself, Rebekah, Catie, Cailin and Lauren to drive over early to the resort. When pulling into the parking gate for the Disneyland hotel, I spotted two of our children attendants with their parents, jumped out of the car and gave an exuberant hello. They would pass on the lunch and meet us at the rehearsal. I said goodbye and went to grab a spot on the Trader Sam’s terrace for everyone to gather.

On our walk to Trader Sam’s, I spotted the events board in the hotel convention center and got very excited to see our rehearsal on the agenda.

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Silly to get excited over, but I made Rebekah take pictures of me in front of it anyways.

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I ordered some appetizers and our already decent-sized crowd got comfortable.

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The eldest of my little sisters, Courtney, and her boyfriend, Jeremy, arrived.

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Jeremy gathered us for a quick group photo and took the camera for a little while.

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Erick’s older brother, Ryan, arrived with his two children.

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I remember thinking that I didn’t really think about the food options for the kids, which I ended up feeling bad about. This is when I began offering Tangaroa Terrace for kid-friendly options. Erick’s groomsman, Tyler, showed up and joined the party. Then there was some goofing off and general mixing. I got distracted by my final bridesmaid, Tatjana, showing up with her boyfriend that picture-taking was forgotten for a while as our group continued to grow.

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My parents and Erick’s parents showed up with his aunt around the same time. At this point, we decided we had outgrown the lounger I’d claimed and began taking over the rest of Trader Sam’s terrace by splitting into smaller tables of four or five. I closed the tab from the previous table and told everyone that they were on their own with any additional drinks or food.

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We mingled and my mom and I became the shutterbugs for the event happening around us.

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Once we all were settled, Erick arrived with Michael and Mark and we were practically assembled as a crew. Each individual greeted Erick with their own form of love and care and they were really fantastic moments to capture.

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We spent our time getting acquainted and caught up. I think most people ended up ordering one more round before it was time to go.

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I checked my phone, revealing that it was show time. I announced it was time to close our tabs and make the short walk over to the rehearsal location (you can pretty much see the Rose Court Garden entrance from the terrace). My planner, Day-of Coordinator, and our four photographers arrived or were already present just as we walked in.

It was time to see how the wedding ceremony would unfold with our colorful group.