I posted the wedding pictures before the pictures of the rehearsal because I was so excited to share the images of the beautiful bride and my handsome brother. Also, I couldn't wait to show you how incredibly cute the kids were on the day of the wedding! We had a whole weekend of fun, though, so there are many more images to share! The rehearsal dinner was held two days before the wedding in order to give everyone a chance to relax with family and friends before the big day. We gathered at St. Anne's on Thursday to make the final preparations for the wedding.
In the past few weeks, I was able to take Mairead to St. Anne's a few times when no one else was there so that she could explore the church and feel comfortable there. The staff at the church was so accommodating and opened up the building just for us so that our little flower girl was ready for her important job. When we walked toward the church on the night of the rehearsal, Mairead could see Ailish, the other flower girl, and Ailish caught sight of Mairead. The two of them ran to each other giggling and then shared a hug. This was the first moment of the weekend that brought tears to my eyes. I was so incredibly happy to see Mairead have such a shared moment of joy with another little girl. It was so special to see her embrace a little friend. To add to the moment, Ailish's dad (Christin's brother) and I have been friends since SEVENTH grade. To see our daughters beginning a friendship is just incredibly special to me. The girls had a fabulous time playing together all weekend! Dave's mom made the dress that Mairead is wearing here.
I didn't upload these in order so bear with me as I jump around a bit. The boys did not come to the rehearsal itself, but the world's greatest babysitter, Stephanie, brought them to the Old Court for the dinner. The boys are two years and four months old, and this is the second time they have been to the Old Court. That's right, I bring my babies to bars. Anyway, they were adorable in their little matching shirts. Any guesses on who is who?
The rehearsal was held at The Old Court in downtown Lowell because this is where Brian and Christin had their first date. And their second. And their third... Brian is a regular and there has even been a special on the menu named after him: Monaghan's Favorite! The pub staff did a great job hosting the dinner and everyone had a great night. We had plenty of time to relax and share some pints with the people we love. Thanks to Finbar, Jerry, Parksie, Krystle, and everyone else who helped us to have a great night! If you haven't been to the OC, definitely check it out!
We surprised Brian and Christin with a slideshow to reminisce about when they were small. We hope they enjoyed it!
Jen and Mike are next to tie the knot-- we can't wait for that wedding!
File this under 'things I never thought I'd see': Brian carrying an armload of Kate Spade boxes. Christin and Brian were very generous in their gifts for the bridal party with beautiful jewelry and great bags for the girls, and Red Sox tickets and sunglasses for the guys. Thanks, Brian and Christin!
Back to the church, I guess! The flower girls were given cute little treat bags from Christin and they loved their new crowns!
It was so exciting to see Brian and Christin get ready for their big day. It was really a cool experience because the organist and bagpiper attended the rehearsal so we had a sneak peek of an amazing walk down the aisle for Christin. Cue the second time I was crying that weekend. I'm such a sucker for ceremony and tradition- add that to seeing my little brother get married to a woman I have come care for very much, throw in some bagpipes, and can you blame me???
I love these next two pictures... how cute are these girls? Watching Mairead walk down the aisle was another emotional moment. I felt like my mind was fast-forwarding 25 years. I hope that some day she is a beautiful and happy bride, and I hope the 25 years in between don't go by too fast!
Prior to the beginning of all the festivities, Mairead, of course, had to get a very special manicure and pedicure from Nana!