We Are Back!

We are back from the wedding in Mexico.  Matt and I are still slightly sunburned.  (Elizabeth sunburned only in two tiny spots beneath her eyes, where clearly I attempted to avoid getting sunscreen in her eyes, and looked like a tiny, red raccoon for three days.)  We are all really tired and still slightly on Mexico/airplane time.  We didn’t get home from the airport until ten at night on Sunday and Elizabeth didn’t go to sleep that night until eleven.  Last night, she was put to bed at eight, and finally fell asleep at 10:30pm.  So that’s lovely.

The wedding was beautiful and everything went well*.

*Elizabeth took a nap before the wedding.  Elizabeth wakes up in one of two moods from a nap.  Either confused but amicable, or DEMON CHILD.  Who wants to guess which mood she woke up in when I had to get her dressed for a wedding?

So, Elizabeth spent an hour and a half before the wedding alternating between depressed sobbing and throwing massive fits.  I was only able to get her dressed and her hair halfway brushed by letting her eat a whole bag of gummy bears.  (I am hoping that her hair looks decent in the pictures.  It was all I could do, really.  I’m hoping that curly hair is as forgiving in wedding pictures as it is normally.)  We were meant to be in the bride’s room an hour and a half before the wedding for the official getting ready pictures.  We went.  Elizabeth sobbed.  We left.  We went back.  Elizabeth sobbed.  We left again. I spent the rest of the time before the wedding doing Elizabeth Mood Triage.  Matt and I held two serious conversations about pulling her from the wedding.  We decided to make it a game time decision and I would pull her right before the walk down the aisle if necessary.  We played silly games.  One of my friends appeared and helped me pull Elizabeth out of her Mood.  We hopped around and played follow the leader.  (And yes, this would be about four adults dressed for a wedding doing this in the lobby of a nice hotel.)  The crying slowly dissipated.  We filled her flower girl bucket up with flower petals and gave her two to practice dropping.  She was enchanted.  She climbed up on some steps and pretended to be on a stage.  I began to think that we might be able to pull this off after all.

We lined up behind everyone else and did the walk down the aisle.  Elizabeth did an excellent job.  Her only problem was that she was a bit too enthusiastic with her flower petals and ran out halfway down the main aisle.  (We walked a walkway first and then turned down the actual aisle.  So she only ran out with about 15% of the walk left.)  We walked up to the front and sat down in the front row, immediately in front of Matt (standing as a groomsman) and next to my in-laws, who Elizabeth adores.  And immediately behind us were two couples that we are friends with and Elizabeth also adores, so we were surrounded by attention.  I had a bag of toys and candy under my seat (and Elizabeth’s iPad, basically everything I could think of, after the hour and a half of sobbing that I packed during) but Elizabeth preferred to stick her feet in the sand and kick it, take off Nanny’s ring and play with that, and then turn around to see what those guys behind us were doing.  One of the sweetest things was that the couple behind us were holding hands during the ceremony, so Elizabeth just reached out and held hands with them.  The woman told me later that Elizabeth was stroking her hand and made her cry.

We made it through the wedding.  Elizabeth only had to be told about a dozen times that she could not go up and also perform the ceremony.  (She became, um, a FAN of attention on this trip because by the end of it, she knew pretty much everyone who was there so there were no strangers to be afraid of.)  We walked back down the aisle and were immediately handed glasses of Sprite from the champagne waiters.  Elizabeth only gets soda in very special occasions, so she thought this was the greatest thing ever.

We took some group pictures (several of which included raising our champagne glasses into the air and Elizabeth became very popular by raising her Sprite up with the rest of the adults).  Then the bridal party was re-routed for pictures while everyone else had appetizers.  Elizabeth was totally recovered from her foul mood at this point and relished the picture attention.  She ended up in several pictures that she was not intended to be in by listening closely to what the photographer was telling the bride and going up next to her and replicating it exactly.  (She also absconded with one of the bridesmaid’s bouquets, so she had flowers as well to do exactly what my sister-in-law was doing in the pictures.)

The photographer was pretty unorganized, so we were dismissed to the reception a few times and then called back for more pictures.  The worst was the one where we all had to struggle down the beach (WAY DOWN THE BEACH) in deep, loose sand, in our formal wear, me carrying Elizabeth down because she simply could not walk in that sand, and Matt carrying her back up (Matt has no cartilage in one of his knees and not much in the other), for one picture.  Eventually, we ended up at the reception for good.  Elizabeth had to be restrained in order to keep her from dancing the first dance with the bride and groom (honestly, I don’t think they would have minded, but we couldn’t let her steal the WHOLE show, now could we?) and also had to be forbidden to make a speech after the bridal party’s speeches.  Direct quote: “Mama, now get me that microphone so that I can do a speech too.”

Elizabeth then spent the rest of the night dancing.  She did several solo dances during appetizer and meal times while everyone else was eating and then she spent the rest of the night alternating between various relatives and good friends and making them dance with her.  She made it until about 10:30pm when she came up to me and requested to be taken to her bed.  (Number of times in her life that Elizabeth has requested sleep: about three.)

And now I have to make dinner, so I will tell you about the rest of the trip tomorrow.