27 September 2009

Weekend recap: weddings and football

By: Jessica B.

Just because I was sick last week, missing half a day of work and working from home one day, that could not stop me from celebrating two of my favorite things: college football and my friend getting married.

And after some last minute prayers to feel better and survive the craziness, I’m pleased to say that I’m back in Chicago in one piece and feeling a lot better than I did Tuesday-Thursday last week (thank goodness!)

So let’s get started!


My parents and I are huge Wisconsin Badger fans. Sure, I went to the University of Minnesota, but in our house, Badgers are #1 and getting invited to my take one or two of my parents tickets to the games is a big treat (*cough* 50 yard-line seats *cough*). And because I had to be in Madison for a wedding that same day, my dad gave me the golden ticket to the Michigan State game, where he told me beer would make me feel better (it does) and a soft pretzel (LOVE THOSE) would settle my stomach. My stepmom even smuggled in chardonnay, which we drank from a water bottle. Seriously, that woman is the QUEEN of smuggling stuff into games. Here’s the view from our seats.


So after a great game (which we won!), I had to get ready for the wedding, which I did in my own traditionally classy way, carrying my dress, shoes and make up into a public restroom and changing in the handicapped stall. The Badger fans that walked into the bathroom and saw me struggling to reach the zipper on the back of my dress must have thought I was c-r-a-z-y.

But I pulled it together and was ready to meet up with Rebecca C and head to the ceremony.

And despite my “tough cookie” exterior and dead-inside heart, I do actually have a fluffy, nougat center (like a candy bar) and seeing two friends get married in such a personal, wonderful ceremony made me tear up, especially as the bride and groom choked up during the vows. I even had a moment, seeing them so in love and happy, where I said, “maybe this is something I want.”

Then my little group made our way over to a bar near the reception hall, but this bar had a tree inside. Yes, a HUGE faux tree. It was awesome. And drunk, male football fans were more than excited to see pretty ladies in dresses. I even discovered the joy of New Glarus’ Spotted Cow beer, which is almost as popular Miller in Wisconsin but is NOT available in Illinois. Oh the cruelty.

The reception was amazing, held at an old, vintage movie theater with the tables set at the floor of the theater with lovely accents and soft lighting. If I had gone with a date, yeah I would have been in the mood to make out :)

My weekend even ended with a French cab driver, asking me why I’m single and refusing to believe I’m 30. Yeah he got a little bigger tip than normal. Sometimes, it’s still nice to hear :)

So how was everyone else’s weekend? Do anything fun? Any other big college football fans out there?


  1. Rachel Sworsky says:

    Hi there! I just stumbled on to your blog – it’s great!

    I wanted to let you know that you can get Spotted Cow beer here in Chicago at a bar called the Burlington in Logan Square. All you have to do is go up to the bar and ask for a “House Beer” and voila – Spotted Cow!

  2. E.P. says:

    It makes me really happy that your stepmom smuggled chardonnay into the stadium. We were always patted down going into the student section, but using a plastic baggie in the bra works well. Ha.

    I don’t get to see my Tigers play in person, but my future in-laws have season tickets. And access to a lot more. So that makes me happy!

  3. MinD says:

    Nice seats!! I’m a Penn State fan and finally got to watch one of our games (I typically work and don’t have Big Ten Network), and of course we lose. To Iowa. What a downer!

  4. Ali says:

    A wedding at a vintage movie theatre? Too cool.

    Sounds like a great weekend! I’ve heard such fun things about Madison, but have never been. Guess I need to visit!

  5. sounds like a blast!
    those are some nice seats and changing at the game, how funny!
    i like college football but since i went to a small private school i’ve never had the team, but i love seeing people get all into it!

  6. AuburnKat says:

    Is it wrong at me that I’ve never cried during a wedding?

    Sounds like you had a great wknd and that was very classy getting dressed in the stall..a girl has to do what a girl has to do! =)

  7. there’s a bar in cleveland called the treehouse with a tree in the middle.

    it’s the bomb.com

  8. A Super Girl says:

    Your Badgers bested my Spartans, so that’s a sad face for me!

    However, I’ve heard tell of the fabulous-ness that is the Spotted Cow beer. I have a friend from Wisconsin and last time we went, we HAD to stop and buy some of it to bring it back to Detroit for him.

  9. katelin says:

    i definitely looked at an old movie theater as a place to get married, haha, that would just be so fun.

    and um your seats to the game are amazing! woo college football!

  10. emily says:

    Now that I don’t live in Madison anymore, I really miss things like Paul’s Club and the Orpheum and football Saturdays…thanks for letting me live vicariously through you :)

  11. barbetti says:

    The only wedding I’ve been to that I DIDN’T cry at was my own, ironically!

    And that is such a great photo! What kind of camera do you have?

  12. Rebecca_C says:

    Hooray for weekend fun and your fluffy nougat center (though I still like my Klondike Bar reference!). You looked so pretty in your dress. I’ll have to send you the photos of us looking fierce at the tree bar.

  13. Erin says:

    The wedding sounds lovely! I’m not a huge football fan, though, so I never understand the appeal of sitting on those uncomfortable bleachers for so long :-)

    I watched my husband race his car on Saturday and then I ran in an 8K race on Sunday. We also attended the Forest Park Arts Festival and entertained my mother-in-law. Ever feel like you need a weekend to recover from your weekend?

  14. Kate says:

    I almost went to Madison on Saturday! Then we realized there was a Badgers game so we went to Beaver Dam instead. :)

    Unfortunately, we weren’t able to escape all the crowds … do you know how many people you can fit inside a Wal-mart on Saturday morning? Because I’m pretty sure they were holding some kind of contest.

  15. the bride&groom’s vow exchange ALWAYS does me in…a complete blubbering mess I am by the time they finally kiss.

  16. phampants says:

    Now that’s a true Badger fan, game then wedding. =)

  17. SoMi's Nilsa says:

    Sounds like a perfect weekend! While I have my own football allegiances, I will tell you one of my all time favorite games was going to see *my* team play the Badgers in Madison. Wisconsin fans are really something else (in a good way!). My weekend was pretty darn special, as I got to spend it with Nora, as you know.

  18. jenn says:

    aww glad you had a good time!! go badgers!

    and spotted cow is fantastic. my husband drinks the stuff like water and our family always makes us bring down a bunch when we go home to chicago!!

  19. Lil' Woman says:

    I was L-A-Z-Y all weekend! : )
    Seems like everyone else tho had a wedding to go to! :)

  20. Andhari says:

    You and your mom are hilarious, smuggling chardonnay and changing in handicap stall and all that :) and it’s always pretty weird yet sentimental seeing a good friend gets married, I feel weirded out though since I’m 22 and apparently early marriage is like a trend here or something, not that I’m gonna go ahead and do that. I do want it someday though.

  21. Paula says:

    Oooh, the wedding reception venue sounded fab!

  22. blaez says:

    smooth moves on the changing in the stall! you go girl!!

    our family is razorback fan (arkansas) and somehow my sister’s husband is a gator (florida) fan… i don’t get it. he was born and raised in arkansas… *crickets chirping* so anyways, they have this cute “house divided” thing with razorbacks on one side and gators on the other. its too cute!

    i know that when joe and i are up there reciting our vows i’m gonna tear up. i know it and i hope that you’re there to witness it! (ps, that means i need an address from you for when we send out the invites… you’ll LOVE arkansas!!)

  23. Liz says:

    I can’t believe that you got ready for a wedding in a public restroom so you wouldn’t have to leave the game early. Hilarious. That is something I would do.

  24. thegirlin3k says:

    I used to feel the same way about weddings and love-stuff – I always thought I had a dead cold heart and then I saw two great friends get married and it was like the ice in my heart melted. Now, I cry at EVERYTHING. Seriously, be careful! Sounds like an overall wonderful fall weekend. Here’s to many, many more!

  25. Jenn says:

    I could use some of that cab driver in my life! Haha we need to catch up soon. I miss you like WHOA.

  26. I am sooo jealous that you got to go to that game! Big Ten sports are sparse in these parts. I had to settle for watching it on TV.

  27. mandy says:

    I only left my house once all weekend. It rained both days causing me to settle in with a blanket, a book, and the Gilmore Girls all weekend. I was talking to a friend earlier and she was telling me about the bar with a tree in it in Madison!! Your weekend sounds like a lot of fun. I am a fan of smuggling myself. =)