Over Labor Day weekend, my Columbus bestie got married!! She’s Indian and her hubby is Peruvian-American. It was such an incredible cultural celebration and I feel very honored to have been asked to be a “bridesmaid” at her side!
My friend was kind enough to lend me a few outfits and also get some new ones for me, Rob, and Pookie from India. My bridesmaid’s sari, and the outfits that Rob and Pookie wore at the wedding ceremony were all purchases just for us from India. Talk about feeling special. 🙂
We have been invited to a few Indian weddings in the past, but for whatever reasons, we were not able to attend. Even though we spent so much time in India ourselves, this was a tradition that was new for us.
The weekend of celebrations began with a mendhi party (aka henna) on Friday evening. FYI – I think “mendhi” is Hindi and “henna” is Arabic, so it’s a different name for a similar thing. I was happy to see a few familiar faces at the party (I met some great ladies at the bride’s bachelorette party a few weekends prior). We socialized, ate yummy food, and got mendhi. I LOVE mendhi, so I was pretty excited!
The pictures below are what it looks like when it’s first put on. You then wait for it to dry and it falls off leaving behind the stain of the design on your skin for several days.
The next day we ate at the amazing hotel buffet breakfast. We stayed at The Embassy Suites in Troy, Michigan and it was incredible!!! It was the best free buffet breakfast we’ve ever had, there was a free (and delicious) cocktail hour in the evenings, the rooms were great, and they had a really nice pool, hot tub, and gym. I was in heaven!
After breakfast on Saturday morning, we relaxed a bit, had lunch with the groom’s family, and then I had a rehearsal for the upcoming Sangeet that evening (I sang a song). We hung out at the pool, got ready and then headed out for the Sangeet. A Sangeet is basically a pre-party with a prepared program of singing and dancing, of course, FOOD!
Sunday morning was an early one, since I had to get up around 5:00am to start getting ready with the bridesmaids. Yes, I’m used to getting up at 4am, but not when you go to bed at 2am. It was a bit rough!
The morning was fun and relaxed with the ladies and the ceremony was absolutely beautiful. I cried!! The ceremony was about an hour and I just LOVED that when we sat at our seats, they had snack bags for us! Everyone watched the ceremony while snacking on crackers and nuts. It was the coolest. There was then a buffet lunch and we headed back to the hotel to rest before getting ready for the reception that evening. As a side note, I should mention that the groom arrived at the ceremony hall on a white horse. Awesome!!!
Below is our little family before the ceremony. If you take enough pictures, you’ll get to see everyone looking at the camera at least once…
And look at Pookie in her Indian outfit!!!
After the ceremony, we had lunch and then headed back to the hotel so all of us could nap. There was another round of gyming and hot tubbing, then we all got ready for the reception and attended the cocktail hour.
Here’s one thing you need to know about Indian wedding receptions – they are so FUN!! Everyone gets up to dance, and I mean, EVERYONE. The guys aren’t shy about it and even the older folks were getting their groove on. It was so cool!
Here’s us at the reception partying it up and celebrating with the bride!!
As a side note, we actually arranged for a local girl to come watch Pookie at the hotel while she slept so we could attend the reception. It worked out great!! The girl was actually one of the coolest 15 year olds we’ve ever met and we learned a lot about her culture, which was a side bonus!*
It was such a wonderful weekend and again, we feel so thankful that were we able to be there!
I’m also so grateful that coming to Columbus caused my path to cross with this beautiful bride and that we have become such close friends. She’s the one I call when I need to vent, need a drink, have exciting news, or need someone to care for my daughter while I’m dealing with a kidney stone at the hospital. Thanks friend, for everything!! xoxoxo
*The local girl was a part of a immigrant group called Chaldean. We had never heard of this term or group of people before, but there is a large group of them around Detroit, MI. Look it up – it’s fascinating!!!