So, somehow after two and half years, two cancellations and a global pandemic, I’m sat by the pool, as Mrs Burnett enjoying my honeymoon!
Now, here is a little blog about we got here…
Well, the wedding fun all began on Friday (thankfully not unlucky) the 13th. The previous two days had been full of final wedding prep delivering favours, packing bags, cleaning and last minute shopping…okay, I’m not going to lie most of that was Stu, but I had been equally busy getting my hair, nails, teeth and tan done – priorities!
Feeling wedding ready, I left Kimbolton road for the last time as a Hebbo and made my way to my parents. After picking my sister, Lauren up, we enjoyed some chill time at the Hebbo palace before my dad, Lauren, lovely friends Natalie and Ben headed to my favourite Italian, Nicolinos for the final single girl meal.
Mum decided to stay at home because she wanted to detox and prep for the wedding, which was probably a good idea as within moments of arriving Dad was ordering beers and cocktails for the table. Luckily, with baby B bubbling away I had a good excuse to stick to the water.
As we enjoyed a VERY big meal, Dad shared everything from relationship advice to his predictions about my labour- both equally disturbing. Extremely full, we left Nicolinos and drove back to my parents, all set for the day ahead.
Just before I went to bed though, I did get a text from Stu, putting me at ease that he had actually got home and did still want to get married tomorrow- phew!
To my surprise, I then had one of the best night’s sleep, not waking up until about 6.30ish when I heard Mum scurrying around downstairs starting the breakfast prep.
A quick, ever so slightly stressful, shower later, where I thought I had locked myself in, it was time to start the hair. I went first, then Lauren and then I think it was Mum but I’m not 100% because then everything did start to go in a bit of a blur! My make up lady then arrived just before my Maid of Honour, Helen.
Again, like the stress free sleep, despite everything being a bit of a blur, I still felt eerily calm. I didn’t even get stressed by the fact that despite it being my wedding morning, Dad seemed more concerned with making sure he got his gardening done.
After my makeup, Natalie, Gina, Dan and Ben all arrived, so Mum got busy taking people’s orders for cooked breakfasts, scrambled egg and bagels. Thankfully, the smell of one of Mum’s breakfasts was enough to lure Dad away from the garden and after munching his bacon and sausages he finally started to get ready, just in time for the arrival of our photographer, Joanna and videographer, Luis.
Unbeknown to me, our driver had also arrived a full hour early as he was paranoid about being late ( definitely my sort of person!)
After a few final getting ready shots, Joanna, Luis, mum and my beautiful bridal party all made their way to the church, leaving just me, Dad and the driver.
Dad of course then had a quick check of the football scores, before I went outside to see all my parents’ neighbours waiting for me. In my absolute element, feeling like a real Dolly Parton (well as real as a Dolly Parton can ever feel) we started our drive to the cathedral.
In the car, Dad and the driver shared stories about the driver’s very colourful life as I tried to find a position I could sit in which wouldn’t totally crease my dress ( I totally understand Princess Diana wedding look now.)
Arriving in Portsmouth over 20 minutes early, the driver took us on a surreal drive along Southsea seafront, as I continued to feel like a celeb with people pointing and waving at the car.
Before I knew it, the time was 2pm and the driver said we should head to the cathedral. It was at this point I did feel my hands start to tremble. This wasn’t helped by the fact that as we drove up the cathedral I could see Stu looking down the aisle. Thankfully, after some manic hand gestures to Helen the cathedral doors were closed before I got out the car.
Our wonderful minister Jo, then told me I looked beautiful and checked I felt ready before telling me it was time. As the doors opened and I heard the wedding march I literally had an outer body experience. Walking down the aisle, seeing all my favourite people, after all the waiting, all the tears, all the bad dates, I couldn’t believe that this was actually happening to me. And I know to say “ i felt like I was going to wake up at any moment” sounds like the biggest cliche, but I genuinely did!
Amongst the smiley faces, waiting at the bottom of the aisle was the most important one, my amazing, wonderful, then fiancé now HUSBAND, Stu.
As I got to the end, after the longest walk ever, Stu broke every rule Jo had told us on the rehearsal and gave me the most perfect kiss.
Jo then started the service explaining our journey to this point and asking the infamous question “does anyone have any reasons why these two shouldn’t be wed?” It was at this point, after getting a question wrong on his puzzle, my beloved nephew loudly said “Not quite”
Thankfully this didn’t put a hold to proceedings as Stu and I went on to exchange our vows. My sister Gina went on to give a word perfect reading which was meant to be followed by a lovely reading from Ben… unfortunately, with all the excitement Jo accidentally skipped this and went straight to the signing of register which was accompanied by the talented pianist, Lewis Bolland making all my childhood dreams come true with a rendition of the Spice Girls 2 become 1.
Fortunately, after the signing of the register, Jo realised her mistake and immediately got Ben to give his reading, complete with Dolly Parton and Sex and the City references.
Reading complete, the organ began to play and Stu and I walked down the aisle and entered our beloved city for the first time as man and wife.
As the cathedral bells chimed and the sun shone down, a very assertive Joanna organised us into all the necessary photos. Stu then FINALLY got to travel in the car as we made the short journey to the Queens Hotel.
Here, I know I spoke to lots of people but at the same time I’m not have absolutely no idea who ( I can only imagine what it would have been like if I was drinking!)
It was then time for the wedding breakfast, which was good as by this point I was absolutely starving. I was also busting for a wee but had no idea of the best way to do this wearing quite possibly the heaviest dress ever. Thankfully Stu’s amazing friends were on hand, including one I’ve met the grand total of two times before, to take me to the loo, hold my dress and even sing so I didn’t get stage fright.
Feeling a lot more comfortable, Stu and I then walked into the wedding ballroom to see our guests with Stu’s favourite Pompey song, Herman’s Hermits, playing in the background. I then inhaled our smoked salmon starter and chicken main. I decided to leave the summer cheesecake which was probably for the best given that in the evening I went on to have four huge slices of the most delicious wedding cake that was ever made (I’m not bias at all)
Guests and a very hungry bride fed, we began the speeches. Dad kicked things off with stories of my phone cooking, lack of direction and fear of mice. However, he also managed to fit in how incredibly proud he was of me and how happy he was to see me so happy which ironically made me want to cry.
Second up it was Stu…there are no words to describe how wonderful his speech was (and you know if there were i’d try!) And somehow, even though I didn’t think it was possible, I fell in love with him even more.
Rich finished things off with a hilarious speech, with just the right amount of football jokes to keep Stu happy whilst not totally offending my dad.
Speeches done, Joanna took us out on the common for some beautiful twilight photos before Stu and I headed back to our room to freshen up. It was at this point, with a face aching from smiling and in a bit of a food coma, I did start to feel a bit sleepy and slightly worried if I would make it through the entire night.
Thankfully, after changing my shoes, seeing my amazing wedding guests and having quite possibly the most uncoordinated first dance to Dolly Parton, I had a burst of energy and was well and truly ready for a party.
I’m not sure if it was the fact I hadn’t danced properly for two years, I had all my friends and family around me or just because it was my wedding, but I literally felt like the happiest drunk ever – which was good because I was surrounded by a lot of actual very drunk happy people.
A night of dancing to ABBA, Michael Jackson, Queen and countless other classics later, somehow it was midnight and time for me and Stu to go to our room.
Now, if you’ve read my previous blog, you’ll know it was never going to be a traditional wedding night, but as we sat in our cosies, eating piles of wedding buffet and cake I couldn’t have been happier.
The next day we woke up as man and wife, still in disbelief that we had finally done it and all set for our new chapter as Mr and Mrs Burnett!