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M.O.B. Matters

By Debra Kennedy | Photography by Tatyana M Photography

Posted: Monday, Jul. 28, 2014

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We are in full swing of the planning stages for all of the stars to align for June 6, 2015. This is the day Alexis will become Mrs. Ryan Stephen Thompson. There are many days when I get emotional, but it gives me great comfort knowing millions of other mothers are feeling exactly the same way. I must admit I also have days when my head is spinning with thoughts of all of the planning and details that have to be conquered. Fortunately, Rome wasn’t built in a day—and a wedding can’t be planned in a day, either!

Enter the perfect opportunity for a celebration to share the excitement with friends and family, the engagement party! What I loved most about planning the engagement party comes down to one simple fact: anything goes. There are no rules, and it can be as relaxed or formal as you care to make it. I must admit I did have fun planning this special day with the help of John Love, co-owner of Red Rocks Café, Andrea Chiles, Event Coordinator at Red Rocks Café, and Angela Recinella of Planned Perfection.

It is customary for the bride’s parents to throw the first engagement party and for me, having it at a venue to avoid the hustle and bustle at my house was an easy decision. It takes the stress off and allows the host to relax and enjoy the company. We decided to have the engagement party at Red Rocks on Providence Road and it was the perfect setting, with a private room with ample space, a covered patio, great beverage selections and a variety of amazing menu options that we’ve been enjoying for years.

Alexis and I had our nightly telephone conversations working out the details of the invitations, signature drink, special songs requests for the musical duo, flower selections, party favors, and so much more. There were a few meltdowns as the stress level is high and nothing prepares you for the ups and downs every bride endures. The engagement party gave me a glimpse of just how quickly time passes.

Many of the bridesmaids are like my second daughters and with their careers taking them to distant cities like New York and Ft. Lauderdale we don’t get to see them often. It was one of the most exciting things seeing guests from near and far come together to join the celebration. But the real joy comes when you see the look on your baby’s face that everything is wonderful and magical and it makes it all worthwhile.

And the best part of it all? At the end of the night, we were able to go home and someone else cleaned up!

I love getting your comments and questions and will answer one at the end of each article going forward. We are bonded in this journey and I love the sisterhood we have established as Mothers of the Bride. You can e-mail me here!

Question: What has been your biggest challenge planning your daughter’s wedding? -Dawn Bolter
Dawn, most definitely the guest list. Narrowing down the guest list has been grueling for all parties involved. This was not an enviable task, but at the end of the day you are constrained by space and/or budget and you have to make tough decisions. I just keep reminding myself, it is all about Alexis and Ryan on this magical day and everything else plays second fiddle.

The Details

Photographer: Tatyana M Photography

Venue: Red Rocks Café, Providence Road

Wedding Planner: Angela Recinella of Planned Perfection

Musical Duo: Ashton Geiger and Josh Slu

Flowers: The Flower Diva

Photo Booth: Shutter Booth

Cake: Cheesecake Etc.

Bride and Groom Cake Pops: Red Rocks Café Bakery

Engagement Party Invitations and Calligraphy: Mary Hannah Statham (maid of honor)

Stylist: Laurie Walker (bridesmaid)

Hair and Makeup: Bryce Carey

Live Personal Artist: Laurie Bostian

Host Hotel: Renaissance Charlotte Southpark Hotel

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