OK, it's time to fill you in on the reception. For those that are just catching up, you can read about Ashley's bachelorette party and ceremony first, and then meet us back here for the grand finale!
After the ceremony, we were escorted downstairs for a cocktail hour. The venue was part flower shop, and it had a beautiful little garden oasis... but I'm not gonna lie, it was way too hot for me out there, so I stayed inside with my wine (holla, White Zinfandel!). The rest of the space was leveled, with candle-light walkways up to the third story on either side. The third story overlooked the ground floor in a way that made you feel very much a part of everything even if you weren't on the same level. I probably should have taken a picture of this, but you'll just have to trust me when I say it was beautiful.
After a couple heart-warming (and tearful) speeches, we were shown to the various dinner stations that were scattered throughout the space. I have to say, I'm definitely a fan of this buffet-style eating. It must be the midwest in me, but I like being able to choose what and how much I put on my plate. I had the most delicious salmon, a steak kabob, green beans, and mashed potatoes. Yum! I want to eat it again!
There was no assigned seating (yay!!), so we got to choose our own tables and mingle with whomever we wanted. This was especially fun for me because I've known the Link family for 15+ years, so I know several of her cousins and aunts pretty well and had a great time catching up with them too. I felt like part of the family!
After dinner, we were ushered back downstairs for an ice cream sundae bar. Although it looked delicious (they even had sprinkles!), I didn't have any because ice cream doesn't go well with wine, and I have my priorities!
While we had our dessert (or more wine), they cleared away our tables to make room for dancing. Let's be honest, the dancing is the best part of any wedding, and we had the best group for it! During and after college, Ashley, John, Andrew, and I used to go to the clubs almost every weekend because we had so much fun dancing together. This was the first time we've been together like this for years, and, as you can see from the pictures, it was just like old times. The DJ played a great mix of current pop songs and our favorites of the 80's and 90's. Everyone there sang along and danced the night away. It was a blast!!
Congratulations to Ashley and Michael Giganti! I wish you both a lifetime of happiness and love!