Ten years ago, the Collins family gathered at the University Club of Chicago celebrating Brian and me after our wedding.
I can’t believe how young my siblings look!
Last weekend, the Collins family returned to the University Club to celebrate the marriage of my sister Nora to Dan, her college sweetheart. Ever since she was a little girl, she had been dreaming of this day. And finally, the countdown was over and the day had arrived!
After a beautiful ceremony at St. Joseph church, the wedding party and our families and friends arrived at the University Club.
We took some family photos on the grand staircase in the lobby. Here’s the Lewis family:
Here’s a small portion of the Collins family:
And here’s a fraction of the Burns family:
And here’s Danny having fun with his uncles, Patrick and Matthew; and Maureen and Jonah, whose wedding reception was in June in my parents’ backyard.
The event began with a cocktail reception in the club’s library.
A table at the entrance to the library had place cards for the guests and photos of Nora and Dan’s parents and grandparents on their wedding day.
A dinner and dancing reception followed in the University Club’s Cathedral Hall. It is a stunning room, with very tall, wood paneled, curved ceilings, stone pillars and walls, and the seals and crests of various universities. More than one guest commented that it looked like Hogwarts, from Harry Potter.
After the bride and groom entered Cathedral Hall, they cut the cake.
The numbers marking each table had photos of the bride and groom from when they were that age. I sat at Table Seven with pictures of seven year old Dan and Nora.
The dinner was wonderful.
My dad gave a touching and funny toast to the happy couple.
Next was a toast by the maid of honor, Mary, and an absolutely amazing toast and song from the best man, Chris.
Chris sang his own rendition of “Brown-Eyed Girl.” It was hilarious, singing about Dan to Nora “He’s her … brown-eyed boy” and then about Nora to Dan “She’s his … blue-eyed girl.”
Nora and my Dad danced to “My Girl.”
Nora and Dan danced to “Galway Girl.”
The music was fantastic. The band, “The Gentlemen of Leisure”, was great. They sang a variety of genres and had multiple costume changes. They were really fun!
During the course of the evening, several family members sang with the band. Nora sang “At Last” to her groom.
Uncle Jack and my brother Matt sang perennial wedding favorites, “Mac the Knife” and “L-O-V-E.”
Rita and my brother Patrick were excited helped the band with tambourines, cow bell and wind chimes.
All the guests had fun with the sunglasses party favors.
There was a bit of talk at the wedding about which sibling will get engaged next. My youngest sister Colleen received multiple marriage requests (in jest) from the groom’s grandfather during the course of the weekend. Ultimately they decided things weren’t going to work out though. And Patrick said he might propose to Rita. Since Rita caught the bouquet tossed by the bride, my money is on those two.
Family and friends had lots of fun spending time together.
My siblings and I look an awful lot a like. There’s no mistaking the fact that we are related. One couple at the reception even said to me, “Congratulations! But why did you change out of your white dress?” (In their defense they were friends of the groom’s family who had never seen Nora’s sisters!)
Here are the bride and groom showing off their new bling!
There was so much dancing!
It was a wonderful weekend celebrating Nora and Dan. We are so happy for them!