Hello dear friends! Apologies for the delay, but she’s been celebrating for the gods this week, so much so that by the end of it all, I was shakier than Liza Minnelli on a boat. That’s okay though. It was worth it and I’ll be continuing to recoup today.
Brace yourself for a long one, folks.
The company I am proud to work for, The Larko Group, celebrates it’s 25th anniversary this year. We kept it swanky at London House and I was so happy to see so many people that have contributed to TLG’s success. Perhaps what made me most happy was to see how dashing my brother Bill looked and how charming he was with everyone.
At the after party, I made the questionable choice of double fisting what I was told was not so good prosecco. I was feeling like Beyoncé in my head, but probably looked more like Lindsay Lohan circa 2008. At the end of the evening, some of us stayed (my colleagues/friends Andrea, Abbey, and Emily) at the same house and I put on a lovely musical theatre medley that no one asked for.
Until Andrea took Emily and me to get empanadas on Southport, let’s just say things were a little rough first thing in the morning. Luckily, we rallied and got pumped for a fabulous time at the Cubs game our boss, Russ, treated us to. We were in the Hornitos Hacienda behind the third base “area”, I think? I slathered myself all day in sunscreen, but inevitably got a hot shoulder tan line. I ran into some people I knew as well, which was fun. The weather was gorgeous and so were the vodka lemonades.
After the game, we returned to the newer, gorgeous Hotel Zachary for catered Big Star tacos and dancing. At speech time, I lost it in talking about my gratitude for Russ and The Larko Group and how it’s shaped me as a person. It was extremely emotional and until I was pacified by my extremely patient colleagues/friends, my makeup looked like this:
After that, we went to Old Crow Smokehouse for, you guessed it, more drinks! The rest of the night was filled with much attempted flirting with random boys around us and it absolutely did not land well on anyone!
Oh, you thought I was done? Nope. Hightailed it to O’Hare Airport to St. Paul, Minnesota for my dear friends, Sam and James’ wedding. It was the shortest, calmest plane ride ever, but probably my worst internally. After partying in the USA like a freshman in college in a non-collegial body, I was not feeling my best. It was pretty rough and claustrophobic, but I got through it with deep breathing, which sounds corny, but is really helpful for physical and mental anxiety.
When I got to the hotel, I put myself back together and met up with my bestie, Britt, before heading down to the lobby for an attempted drink prior to the wedding, but for me, ended up being four glasses of water.
The ceremony and reception occurred in a gorgeous, giant library. It was probably the coolest venue I’ve ever seen and it was so Sam and James. The exchanging of the vows destroyed everyone; there was a lot of runny mascara on the girls and boys, ha! These two are a beautiful, joyful couple and they inspire me so much.
After some wedding toasts and a healthy dinner, there was dancing to an incredible playlist and pictures with wedding dresses that were hysterical. I snuck out a little early so I could actually go to bed without makeup on and sleep under the covers.
On Sunday, I woke up and found my way to a local bagel shop before heading to the airport where I made the mistake of buying a back rub by a total inept young lady who had the hand strength of an infant and the care factor of…an infant. I actually shortened the original length of the “massage” when I knew she was garbage. $60 later, I finally figured out something to eat before boarding the plane, reading some of my new book, Crazy Rich Asians, and falling asleep for most of the flight.
Traffic was bad and my Lyft driver was sweet, but so obese and his breathing patterns really concerned me. An hour later, I was finally home and began to unpack. I climbed into bed around 8pm and passed out. I had a dream that Beyoncé showed up at my childhood home and we went to Target together. Now we are friends.
Technically, it’s just started. I woke up at 4:45am and was inspired to write, but I hope to coax myself back to sleep here soon. I’ll be recouping today. Healthy eating, lots of fluid intake and heading to the gym. Holla at me.
A Few Notes of Gratitude
Russ: As you know from my speech, you mean a great deal to me and your generosity and sense of fun, while being an incredible business owner and mentor is astonishing.
Andrea: Thank you for being the big sister and partner in crime in fun and work that I need. I can’t imagine life without your laughter and guidance. You inspire me to be a better me.
Emily: The fact that you’ll still talk to me after rooming with me at the Hotel Zachary is a miracle! I feel as if we’ve know each other for years and that our connection is so strong even though I don’t see you as much as I would like to.
Britt: Seeing you at my door when I needed you to zip my dress just made me so thankful to know you (literally) have my back always. You are such an incredible listener and are so beautiful and fun to be around. Our time this weekend was short, but I can’t wait to see you this Friday.
Sam & James: You both are such a fantastic force of positive energy and light, separately, and together. In mingling with the guests at your wedding, I just thought, “wow, these two are so special to have such fabulous friends and family that know how to live.”
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