i was hesitant to title this the "rehearsal dinner" because there wasn't any sort of traditional pre-wedding rehearsing going on.
and then i remembered one of the main goals of the night-- educating 45 white people in the art of salsa dancing-- and i realized it actually was one big rehearsal.
getting married in a city that wasn't my hometown to a man from another country, we weren't really in the position of holding any sort of traditional wedding rehearsal dinner. but we had friends and family coming from all over the country, and i'm alll about family and friends, so we wanted to get together and start the celebrations a day early!
we wanted to keep everything very casual and low-key and just enjoy each other's company, so we all gathered in a local church building for a costa vida taco bar (you all know my love for tacos) and conversation.
we knew that we'd be playing some salsa songs at our reception the next night and wanted at least some of our guests to feel prepared to try to dance salsa if they wanted to, so we had two of our clients-turned-amigos, sydnee and david, up to teach us some salsa and bachata! that's when the embarrassment started on my end (these hips definitely lie), but it was hilarious/awesome. i loved getting to practice salsa with mateo, and it was the best to watch everyone else try their hand at it!
after a few days of stressful, last-minute wedding plans, it was such an amazing feeling to see everyone start pulling up to our family dinner. i remember seeing all of my family-- from boise to kentucky to down the street-- walk in, friends from california, nevada, and colorado, as well as mateo's mission presidents and buddies from all around the valley, and feeling overwhelmingly loved. and it really doesn't get any better than that.
we finished the night off with a little "bachelorette" night. since we weren't close to vegas (ha! kidding), we continued with the trend and kept things low-key. my sweet friend, anna, planned the best night! we ate the best gelato at a local salt lake shop, then headed back to her house for some hilarious peruvian games and girl talk. it was so fun to catch up with some of my closest friends and cousins!
(sorry to emily for getting cut out of the photo! and devs + tessy who had to leave before the photo)
part of me wishes i could've been a fly on the wall for mateo's guy night; his buddies took him bowling for the first time (!!!), and i would've loved to see that. the lego movie? not so much. though i think it's pretty precious that those are the last things mateo wanted to get out of his system before marriage ;)
it was the perfect, rainy night and best way to start out our wedding weekend! i'm so grateful to all of those who helped make it happen.
p.s. more wedding goodies coming soon! and a special thank you to bud corkin for taking over my usual role and shooting the rehearsal dinner.