I already explained the low point of my trip home. Here's what I did the remainder of last weekend:
The wedding: Paul's good friend Joe got married in New Castle, Indiana, and Paul was in the wedding. New Castle is a small town right off Interstate 70, about 2 1/2 hours from Columbus. It reminded me of Defiance, except instead of a mall it had a large box store called "Rural World."
I knew a surprising number of guests there-- people I had originally met through Joe (including one of the members of the book club I belonged to!) as well as one of Paul and Joe's joint friends through Tang Soo Do (that's Joe, Paul and Shane on the left).
The shower: The wedding was outdoors on the farm of the bride's family, but luckily the rain showers stopped before the 5 p.m. ceremony. It was still cold, and I was dressed wildly inappropriate for an outdoor wedding. I obviously didn't pay close attention to the invitation, because I didn't realize the ceremony was outdoors until the day before. I gladly would have traded by spring dress and high heels for a pair of pants and sensible shoes! Either way, I had a wonderful time at the wedding and rehearsal dinner and was mildly amused by the kitschiness of our motel, the Steve Alford All-American Inn. What, you didn't recognize the giant shoe?
The wedding shower: We drove to Defiance immediately after the reception, another 2 1/2 hours in the car. My sister, Katie, is getting married in less than two weeks, so we decided to hold her bridal shower during a weekend I would already be in the state. Yup, we played a couple of silly games, during which it was confirmed that I know my sister not at all. Katie got a lot of lovely gifts (who's even heard of a foldable griddle?) and I saw a lot of my family, of course. I also met several of Katie's future in-laws for the first time.
Only 12 days until the wedding!