Our rehearsal dinner took place about a block away from our wedding rehearsal at 400 Beach Seafood and Tap House in St. Petersburg.
We all walked over to the restaurant from the rehearsal destination and spent 20 minutes or so mingling, sipping on drinks and enjoying hot appetizers.Once we all took our seats, Ryan stood up to thank everyone for coming and express our gratitude for the support and love we felt from everyone in the room throughout our lives.We then placed our orders and chatted away while we waited for our food to come out.
Prior to the dinner, I wrote a little poem I planned to read, but I started to chicken out. Ryan asked me when I was going to read my poem and I told him I wasn’t planning on reading it anymore because I felt too nervous!
Apparently my dad overheard this conversation and before I knew it, he and Ryan teamed up on me and started clinking their glasses to get everyone’s attention so I could read my poem. Grr!
Of course I couldn’t back down, so I read my poem and got all teary-eyed.
We stand here before you
In a relationship sent from above
But we know we would not be “us”
If not for your love
Your warm hugs and your support
Your tears and your jokes
All helped us become who we are
You are some very special folks
Friendships as tight as families
And family members who are our friends
We feel blessed beyond belief
To know that upon you we can depend
You’ve been there to encourage us
To lift us up when we felt low
Your unconditional love
Gave us the ability to grow
Tomorrow our lives will change
When we exchange our vows
That’s something we’re ready to do
Because you all showed us how
Though I felt embarrassed at the time, I am glad I shared my poem and hopefully conveyed just how much everyone in the room truly means to me.
After we were all finished eating our main meals, my mom, Ryan’s mom and my sister stood up and surprised us with a beautiful slide show that included baby pictures of me and Ryan that looked oddly similar! They did an excellent job of pairing pictures of Ryan and me doing similar things at similar stages in our lives, which were hysterical and so fun to see.
Then they surprised us by opening up the floor and allowing people to share stories and talk about us and our relationship.
It was so moving to hear from people we care so much about and many of the stories had us laughing pretty hard.Eventually it was time for dessert which came in the form of pumpkin spice cupcakes that Ryan’s mom brought as a surprise for everyone.By the time dinner was over, our bellies were full… but so were our hearts. It sounds cheesy (I know it totally is), but it’s true.
The rehearsal dinner was the perfect precursor to a wonderful wedding day!
Sounds like a lovely night. The poem is so great, I’m glad you shared it!! I’d love to see the slideshow your mom’s/sister did!!!
Hope you are enjoying the cruise!
Kristi @ eatdrinkloveandexercise says
That poem was great! It looks like you had a very special night.
Amanda (Eating Up) says
What a nice dinner! I like that they opened up the floor to hear people talk about you guys–although, I would be super nervous not having pre-screened the stories! Haha
Aw, what a wonderful dinner! Filled with such love. Sounds like it was a great time!! 🙂
Chelsea @ Strawberry Sweat says
That is awesome that they made slideshows of pictures of you both! Slideshows and videos like that are always my favorite part of weddings 🙂
Savannah P says
What a beautiful poem!! Everything looks beautiful. I wish you and your families so much happiness <3 reading these posts has been my favorite way to start the morning this week, haha!
Emma (Sweet Tooth Runner) says
Aww that poem brought tears to my eyes! 🙂 I’m sure they really appreciated hearing how much they all mean to you!
Sounds like it was an awesome night (you looked beautiful btw!), and I can’t wait for the official wedding photos to be posted too! 😀
look at how alike your sister and your mom look in that picture!! there noses and everything!! hah
such a cute poem!!:)
Amber K says
What a sweet poem! I am so glad you decided to share it after all. I’m sure it really touched people.
it doesn’t sound cheesy at all…it sounds like youre very happy, blessed, and rich with love, friendship and support(sidebar: LOL when has cheesy ever been a bad thing anyway? i mean seriously, cheddar tastes good!). enjoy the rest of your honeymoon <3
Sarah K. @ The Pajama Chef says
sounds like a great rehearsal dinner! i love slideshows and its so sweet that your moms did that for you guys!!
You have such a wonderful way with words. 🙂 That poem was beautiful. And you look absolutely stunning! Can’t wait to see more wedding pics. 🙂
Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes says
Your dress looks fab!
Looks like it was a great night! That poem is so lovely, I can’t write a poem or rhyme to save my life! haha.
Heather (Heather's Dish) says
i’m totally crying now…that poem is perfect!
Ashley from Texas says
Those cupcakes look amazing! Wishing I had one tonight while I sip on my pumpkin vanilla chai. Also your dress is amazing. Hope you’re enjoying the rest of your honeymoon.
i love the grey suit jacket over white shirt on him!!! looks really nice 🙂
Your poem is adorable, you should be glad you read it! Hope you’re having fun:)
Laura @ Backstage Pass says
Thanks for sharing this special evening with all of us! It sounds like you had a wonderful time, and everyone was so thoughtful. What a great rehearsal dinner!
I never comment on your blog, but I often read it! I have LOVED seeing your wedding pictures and details. SO beautiful! Have fun on your cruise!
Leanne @ simplicitlee says
What a nice poem <3
I love your dress! It is so cute! The poem was so adorable! I love reading about your wedding. 🙂
Rachel @ The Avid Appetite says
Cute poem! And I love your dress. 🙂
Kim (Imperfectly Perfect) says
Sounds like it was a great night surrounded by those that you love. 🙂 Your poem was very cute! I would have been nervous too.
Jennifer Nimmo says
Julie~ I absolutely love your blog! Actually, I found your blog when doing a search for Beach Seafood rehearsal dinners! I am having my rehearsal dinner there as well in October. I was just wondering how many people attended your rehearsal dinner, and how spacious was the room? If we end up inviting all of our relatives, we are looking at 65-70 people and the max is supposed to be 60. I would greatly appreciate your opinion on whether or not you think we can fit this many people or will it be too crowded? Thanks!
how neat! congratulations to you!!! we really loved our dinner there. i think we had around 50 people and the room felt comfortable and not too, too crowded. i’m sure they can work with you on table arrangements to make it work!