See, I told you I wouldn't make you wait 3 months! This time it's only been a little over a week.
I ended the last post telling you about my sangeet back home in New Jersey. After finally recovering from the madness, it was crunch time. I only had about a week and a half before my flight to Cali and I still hadn't started packing all of my belongings. You never realize how much CRAP you own until you have to pack it up and move somewhere. Luckily over the past couple of months I had been de-cluttering my room and getting rid of things that were no longer needed, but packing for California was still no easy task. With one suitcase filled with the clothes and accessories for my wedding events, one filled with new Indian outfits to wear to events after our wedding, one suitcase with the outfits my mom would be wearing and two suitcases of my everyday "normal" clothes, I still left a lot of stuff behind to bring back to California on my next trip. Tip - If you're packing a bunch of clothes, do yourself a favor and buy those vacuum bags. Yes, the ones that you've probably seen on those cheesy infomercials and yes they actually work. (They're also cheaper on Amazon.)
My mom and I got to California on May 2nd, just 9 days before the festivities began because I hadn't been back to the Bay since the previous November and there was a LOT of planning to do. Thankfully by the end of my last visit we had already booked our engagement/maiyan/ reception venue, the Gurdwara where we would be getting married, my mendhi artist, my makeup artist, and we had blocked rooms at a hotel in close proximity to the engagement/maiyan/reception venue.
Although time was very limited our close friend and photographer/videographer RealXLifee convinced us to do an engagement shoot the Monday before our wedding. It was hectic but totally worth it. We can't thank Amit enough for convincing us to do this. Not only was it a fun memory, but the shots came out better than we could have even imagined because of his vision and creativity.
Our wedding events officially began on Wednesday, May 8th when Gagan had a BBQ/ Kickback with his boys at his Pua's place (paternal aunt) and I had a mendhi night with his aunts, cousins and a couple of my relatives at his mama's (maternal uncle). It was a casual and very fun night for all of the ladies to get together and get excited for all of the festivities to come. I have to admit, I was really nervous thinking about if I would be able to manage sitting still so long while my mendhi was applied but my mendhi artist, Ravie aunty was very professional and quick. She did the exact design I wanted while adding some extra embellishments on the way. She even had extra time at the end to apply some mendhi on my mom and other family members! Will add some pictures of my mendhi soon!
FYI: I highly recommend any vendors who I mention in this series of blog posts, I would only include their name if I'm happy with the service I received, which is why I've attached links! Stay tuned for part 3 when the real fun begins!