travel things

Puerto Rico Part II: Wedding

The whole reason I went to Puerto Rico was to celebrate my cousin’s wedding.

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SONY DSCOn Monday we joined the wedding party for the rehearsal lunch. In true latino style, everyone was late, and the food took forever. The restaurant was at the top of a hill, and the map had a wrong turn, which led me and my parents down the wrong road. I proudly used mi pequeno Spanish skills to ask for directions. After we turned around and went “derecho, derecho, derecho…” we corrected our (cough – the map’s) error.

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SONY DSCThe view was SPECTACULAR! We were the only people at the venue, and we got to hang out and get drinks (I introduced everyone to the classic malibu + pineapple combo), and then, because we got appetizers, we were the last table to finish our food. My dad convinced Hettie, my 13-year-old cousin, to try octopus. I wouldn’t try it. She made a terrible face, but we were all proud of her! SONY DSC

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SONY DSCI got more – amazing – plantains, that were served with some kind of delicious dipping sauce. My entree was an appetizer (everything was so expensive, and I hate spending a lot of money on food, even if I’m not the one paying for it), made with some combination of mango, cilantro, and steak. I can’t remember what it was, but it tasted amazing!

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IMG_6677We were all dying to get out and get some sun by that point, since it had rained in the morning so none of us had gotten to go outside yet. Around 4pm or something crazy late like that, we left, and I immediately dashed to put my suit on and snagged a chair that someone had already moved to the water’s edge.

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SONY DSCTuesday was wedding day. Me and my dad were dying to have a day at the beach, so we spent the morning at the place recommended to us by the locals. Afterwards we got all spruced up and headed over to Hacienda Siesta Alegre, at the edge of the rainforest, just in time for the ceremony.

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SONY DSCMy sweet cousin! He lived at our house when I was in elementary/middle school and he was first starting out in Richmond. He’s so tall, I used to climb all over him like he was a swing set! Hah! He’s been working hard the past few years as the own of Chiocca’s in downtown Richmond, and I was wondering if any woman would ever convince him to relax a little bit. I’m so glad he found Rebecca!!

SONY DSCThis Puerto Rican minister was awesome – he was God-centered but kept the ceremony light-hearted. When it was time for the kiss, you can’t see it in the pictures, but he pulled a conch shell out of nowhere and trumpeted in their marriage! It was such a fun local touch!

SONY DSC SONY DSCThey are so sweet together! They referenced an Adam Sandler poem in their vows, too. It was really quirky and fitting for them.SONY DSCYou can kind of see the conch shell horn…

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SONY DSCI’ve been to a lot of weddings, and many of them were absolutely gorgeous, but this was hands-down the most beautiful wedding I’ve ever been to! No competition. If it’s in a rain forest, at sunset, in perfect 80-degree weather with slight humidity, with tons of greenery and vibrant flowers…. I mean, you can’t beat that!!

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10437620_10206434078759711_5278873135350193498_nThe Brumfield crew! This looks like a decent number of people, and it is, but it’s actually only about a fifth of my mom’s side of the family! I wish everyone could have been there of course, especially my husband and brother and other girl cousins my age, but I think we ended up with the perfect group. πŸ™‚

Scott was so, so thankful that two of his aunts were there (my mom and Brenda, pink shirt on the left), since his mom couldn’t be. My aunt Doris passed away several years ago, and Scott’s dad didn’t attend the wedding either. Rebecca’s father also passed away, though her mom and step-father were there. It was sad to be missing so many important people, but I know it really meant a lot for those of us who could be there to attend.10544339_10152910294923509_2310246816789487614_nI had the most fun with my parents!! They are the greatest travel companions… they really like to have fun, but also relax! It’s not wonder where I got the travel gene from πŸ˜‰SONY DSC

SONY DSCThe reception was laid back, yet elegant. There were turquoise-colored drinks, and plenty to do while we were waiting for the food.

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Aren’t you obsessed with the florals?? The colors were so rich!

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SONY DSCThe food was amazing! There were tasty passed hors d’oeuvres like fresh bruschetta and barbecue on toasted pitas, and for dinner they served a buffet of salad, rolls, grilled chicken, steak, and salmon, plus plantains, green rice, and macaroni and cheese. I loved the cultural twist of Southern plus Caribbean after being on the island and eating locally for a few days. It was just right – felt like home, but with some island flair.

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SONY DSCThere were even hammocks to lounge on!

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SONY DSCThere was a staircase that led to this bridge and gorgeous view, so of course the girls took it as a photo opp!

SONY DSCI adore these ladies and am so excited that I’ll be living so close to them soon!!

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SONY DSCI didn’t get a picture of it, but the favors table was filled with Puerto Rican souvenirs – it was a surprise that Rebecca’s mom had set up! All the ladies could take a scarf for when it got chilly, which we did (See Hettie, Abigail, and Frances sporting theirs below), there were musical instruments to liven up the dance party later in the night, and there were all sorts of little trinkets, like tiny mugs, to pass out to family who weren’t able to make it.

girlsThe dudes were going to wear shorts, but apparently Rebecca vetoed that. They still got to pull off their Hawaiian shirts, though! So “dad”! Haha. We thought it was great.

SONY DSCThe Hacienda…

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SONY DSCAfter dinner and the Hacienda’s lengths had been explored and everyone was feeling a little more comfortable, the band started up. They played a lively mixture of salsa, merengue, and American funk hits. I loved it! Shannon had taught us some simple steps from a salsa lesson she took earlier in the week, so we were all set to go – hah! I taught the younger girls, and Beth just improvised. Eventually a Puerto Rican lady came by and corrected my salsa to a merengue when the beat was a bit slower – no hopping, just shaking the hips.

IMG_6780Then a song came on that Beth knew a routine for, and my mom tried so hard to pick it up! We all had a blast!

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SONY DSCOh! There was even a caricaturist! This was the most unique feature I’ve seen at a wedding. It was so entertaining! The artist said it’s quite popular at weddings in PR.

SONY DSCThis was my parents, and mine, done separately. Can’t you see the resemblance between my mom’s and mine?! It’s funny how the artist saw that even though he didn’t know we were mother and daughter. (Also – hilarious how my dad looks so Puerto Rican… or Cuban!)

IMG_6838It didn’t rain at all until right before the sparkler exit. It was a joyous yet casual wedding, and the perfect way to end a fun week with my family in the Caribbean!

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2 thoughts on “Puerto Rico Part II: Wedding

  1. This wedding looks and sounds absolutely gorgeous! I’ve never been to a destination wedding, but it seems that they did this one just right! So pretty!

    I got the travel bug from my parents too. I never dreamed I’d want to hang out with them so much when I was younger!

    Like

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