I hesitated in writing up my summary of the last leg of my trip. Partially because this would mean that the trip was REALLY over, and partially because it was my favorite part of the trip and I wasn’t really certain how to write about it.
I’ve been planning this trip to Kansas City for about a year. My dear, sweet, inspiring, fabulous friend Natalie was getting married, and you best believe I wanted to be front and center to see her marry the man of her dreams.
Nat and I have been friends for about 5 years now, but honestly, I feel as though I’ve known her forever. Interestingly, we’ve also never lived in the same city, nor spent weeks on end with one another… but just the same, she’s become one of my bestest of friends.
She and I started working together back in 2008 when I took a job in the same department. Instantly, we bonded over just about everything… TV shows, fun stories of the work day, movies, books, shopping, you know… all the fun GIRL STUFF!
When I started on my journey to lose weight, Nat was right there with me (virtually, of course) cheering me along. She was that voice or text message saying “Don’t drive thru” or “Go to the GYMMMM” in the most supportive way. And, when I finally came out of the “blog closet” she was one of the first people that I shared NTTC with…
As she heard all the intimate details of my weight loss battle, I had the extreme privilege of hearing all about her great adventures involving her courtship with her wonderful husband Rick.
All that being said, the third leg of my trip was particularly special because it involved Nat.
I flew into KC on Friday morning, as I needed to be in town in time for the rehearsal dinner. I made reservations to stay on the beautiful Country Club Plaza so that I’d be close to the wedding festivities and so that we would be able to enjoy the Plaza during free time.
When I got to the Courtyard Country Club Plaza, I had a fun package at the front desk from the bride with water, snacks, and last minute reminders about the wedding.
Having several hours free before I had to be anywhere, I headed off to the plaza for some shopping and lunch. I knew exactly where I wanted to go for lunch and made a beeline for Seasons 52.
If you’ve never had the pleasure, Seasons 52 is a restaurant that boasts a seasonal menu, with weekly specials (thus the 52.) The BEST part about their menu is that every single item on the menu is under 475 calories. SERIOUSLY! The waiter when he stopped by emphasized that their dishes are not prepared in butter and that olive oil is used sparingly. (Seasons 52… Why are you not in Denver yet??)
There were so many things on the menu I wanted to try, but I settled on two appetizer salads to try: the Crisp Romaine & Kale Caesar Salad and the Tomato and Hass Avocado Salad. I ended up eating about half of each salad, which clocked in at about 310 calories. PERFECTION!
After a delicious lunch, I popped into a few stores to pick up a few accessories for the rehearsal dinner: A new clutch from Forever 21, earrings and bracelet from Black House/White Market, and a scarf to cover up with on the cool Missouri night! You can’t not shop in the Plaza, afterall!
After squeezing in time for a sweaty workout in the hotel gym, it was time to get ready for the rehearsal. I found this great green dress at TJ Maxx and was excited to pair it with my new accessories.
I absolutely loved Nat’s rehearsal, which was held at the amazing Plaza III Steakhouse in their wine cellar.
Mostly, it was honored to meet her family. The beautiful cast of characters that she had described to me for years… it was awesome to put a face with the names and stories she had shared. It was especially wonderful meeting her mom, Grandmother (Nonna), and her new stepson Little Ricky!
The bride looked SO beautiful and incredibly happy, and it was SO fantastic to see this lady!
After a delicious meal at Plaza III, we headed off to a local bar to meet up with some additional wedding guests who had arrived during the rehearsal. While we didn’t stay out long, we spent a little time catching up with Janelle (my roommate for the weekend), Jamie, and Kara who had flown in from California. So fun to see everyone!