Friday, October 16, 2009

Wedding Week: The Honeymoon!

When I was eleven, I was in my aunt Amy's wedding (she's my mom's youngest sister and Mom had one of those big Catholic families, so Amy was only 12 years older than me). She had a very traditional, big wedding. I was a junior bridesmaid. She also had the classic tropical honeymoon. They went to Hawaii and brought me back some parrot earrings. I loved crazy earrings at the time and I also loved hearing about the beauty of Hawaii. I decided then that when I got married I'd go to Hawaii. Of course I think I also thought I'd wear the traditional white dress at my wedding and that even though I wasn't raised religiously whatsoever that I would have to get married in a church because that was how it worked. Of course, I ended up getting married in a bar to guy with a mohawk while wearing this dress:

So yeah.... But I still am dreaming of Hawaii. Really, really badly. Especially since we appear to have skipped fall and gone to my most hated season of all here in Chicago, winter. Of course the reality is I'm a broke-ass bartender/novelist and he's a broke-ass mechanic so we're going to have to really scrimp and save to go any place tropical. Paying for our pretty-damn-cheap wedding really dipped into our savings. And plus, it's not like you get paid vacation as a bartender. But everyone told us, go somewhere, at least for a couple days to enjoy the beginning of married life alone and forget the stress of the wedding and daily life.

I wasn't so sure holing up in a hotel room for a couple days would really be all the great, but being a bartender has it's perks... you meet all kinds of people, including people who own B&Bs.

Two guys came into my bar on a slow night (if you follow my twitter, you know I have a lot of those. *sigh.*) and I got to talking with them and found out they owned two B&Bs in Kankakee, a river town about an hour away from Chicago. One of them was a beautiful old Victorian House called the Magruder House. They told me, I think that would be your kind of place, and they offered me a two-day "romance package" for 250$. For 50$ more, we could have the whole house to ourselves for both days. This, mind you, was only 100$ more than I was paying to spend *one* night at the Carleton Hotel in Oak Park on our wedding night. And the Carleton was a huge disappointment. When I tried to ask for an earlier check-in time, letting them know it was needed because it was our wedding day, they turned me down. And the bed was rock hard and terrible to sleep on. We left feeling ripped off.

The Magruder House was the exact opposite. We had a wonderful experience and left feel like we'd gotten a magnificent deal!

We arrived on Monday around 4 pm and were greeted by one of the owners, Scott. He had a little welcome bag waiting for us, that read "Welcome Newlyweds!" and included some pears, tea cookies, and rice krispie treats. There was also a bouquet of roses in our room:

It was a beautiful day so we went for a short walk and hung out in a park with a great view of the Kankakee River for awhile. We swung on swings and just talked. It was nice to just be able to chill out with Scott and not worry about anything. That night we went out to dinner at this great brewery called Brickstone Brewery nearby that brewed their own beer. Scott liked it so much he bought a growler of the porter and we may end up making the drive back so he can get more at some point. Our waitress was a total sweetheart too. She complimented my ring and I couldn't resist telling her that we just got married. That night we slept in the most awesome, comfortable king-sized posterbed ever. Seriously I want that bed. And we took note of the sheets and hope we can order them at some point :) Here's Scott all cuddled up:

Tuesday was rainy unfortunately because we'd planned to take a romantic boat ride on the river. Instead we went to see Zombieland, which was totally awesome so all was good. Also that day, the B&B served us complimentary champagne and chocolate fondue! Deliciousness. And this after they made us a great breakfast too. They also gave us a 75$ gift card to a local Italian restaurant where we had dinner. Then we returned to find Scott the B&B proprietor leaving us a plate of homemade animal cookies and soymilk!

We also had a hearty breakfast the next day before we left. Seriously, for 300$ it was an incredible deal and I hope we can do it for our anniversaries.

We are still dreaming of a proper tropical honeymoon this December or January. I'd still love to go to Hawaii though I'm uncertain if we can afford it. So I'm still taking other suggestions and if you hear of a good deal please let me know! We don't have passports, but can get them if necessary (it was a lot easier to change my name than I thought. It's already legally changed, so I can get a passport with it now.) to go to an island or something. I've heard good things about Jamaica and Costa Rica so those are under consideration. Not so much Mexico though.

Anyway, that was my wedding and my daydream for a honeymoon. I'm sure there will be a photo blog at some point when we get the professional photographs, but that is it for now, so I hope you enjoyed wedding week!

Oh and I've decided to extend my contest to save Shrinking Violet Danielle Joseph to Monday morning, so keep getting your entries in! I will announce a winner here on Monday afternoon! Go enter!

Lastly, my third book finally went on submission today. The title for now is Hurricane Zoe, but if it sells, I might try to pitch my original title (Anarchists, Soap Stars and Regulars) for it. Anyway cross your fingers for me!

What are your weekend plans? Mine are to read at Borders in Oak Park, IL tomorrow at 2 pm. So I hope to see you there!


Becca said...

I'm so glad you had an amazing mini-honeymoon!!!!

We're hoping to get to Hawaii sometime soon, too.... I really really wanted to get married there, but that obviously didn't happen. So, vow renewal is the next plan we have...

alissa said...

Where we stayed on Maui:

Where we stayed in Kona:

Kona was my favorite. Both hotels were affordable and awesome. Noelani will give you fresh flowers and champagne if you say it's your honeymoon.

If you do go, I'll tell you places to eat and shop and do too.
Our photos:

Sara said...

I wish I could come see you in IL Saturday (today)! Have fun!

Also, so glad the Honeymoon was fun! Zombieland would be an intersting movie to see instead of a romantic boatride! :)

Stephanie Kuehnert said...

Becca, I hope you guys do get to go there for vow renewal. If we can't afford it this year, that may be a good plan!

Alissa, thanks soooooooo much for these links! We're looking into them and if we can afford airfare, hopefully we can go!

Sara, Wish I could have met you too. ANd yeah Zombieland, not exactly romantic, but totally our thing so it worked!

BrittLit said...

Your picture of the Magruder House looks very Gothic and creepy, unlike the bright cheery pictures on their site. Good luck with your pitch! I hope it takes, we are all dying to read more!