Thursday, November 10, 2011

Happy 236th Birthday Marines!

This year's Marine Corps Ball was absolutely amazing!  I've lost over 30 lbs in the last 8 weeks, so I was super excited to be able to buy a SIZE 18 dress instead of a SIZE 24.  (thanks, by the way, to those of you who helped me pick a dress!  I ended up wearing the one my hubby liked best, since he was the one who actually had to be SEEN with me all night.  But the dark blue one that got the most votes will probably be my dress for the 'finale' of my Vallley's Biggest Loser competition in a couple weeks.)

My mother-in-law came out to spend the weekend so she could stay with the kids, but since Bobblehead still nurses to sleep at night & again first thing in the morning, we decided not to get a hotel room.  Our ball was about an hour away, but this is SoCal - we drive that far on a daily basis around here. 

My friend and fellow contestant in Valley's Biggest Loser (and fellow milspouse) came over and did my hair & makeup.  I mostly wanted the false eyelashes, but she also gave me a beautiful airbrushed complexion that needed NO touch-ups all night!  I re-did my lipstick a few times over the course of the evening, but that was it.  My hair really does NOT hold any curl, but after she spent three long hours on my look, she added some extra hairspray just to be sure.  Amazingly, the curls held all night.  (Thanks Shannon!!!)

hair/makeup BEFORE

hair/makeup AFTER

The food was all delicious this year, but NONE of it was OK to eat on my current diet. I had a few selective bites of chicken & veggies, and had my salad with NO DRESSING. When they set the ridiculously beautiful cheesecake in front of us, I simply passed my plate to my husband - I knew if I tasted even one bite of it, I would eat the whole piece. (Thanks, hubby, for saving me from my former favorite dessert!)

Our guest of honor this year was R. Lee Ermey, and he was seriously HILARIOUS.  He was also very nice about making sure everyone at the ball had a chance to get an autograph or a picture, so we lined up for that almost as soon as the meal was over.  We even got the professional photo done this year, but won't get that until the next drill weekend, which is in December.  I'll definitely post that as soon as we get it!

Our coodinator this year set up an adjacent ballroom with space for the photographer & a mini "casino".  They had a craps table and a handful of blackjack tables.  No actual money involved, of course, but the longer you played, the more raffle tickets you could get, and at the end of the night they drew tickets for a couple of free trips to Vegas.  We didn't win, but Jarhead really enjoyed the whole thing!  In the end, we spent so much time in the casino room, we didn't get to dance because the DJ left 11 PM (because NO ONE was dancing.  WTH?).  There was a high school reunion and some kind of formal party also at the same hotel, so we briefly toyed with the idea of crashing one of those parties to get our dance on, but in the end we skipped it.

It was just as well that we skipped the dancing, since my feet were KILLING me after a few hours in these 5 inch heels:

I actually limped out to the parking garage at about 10:30 PM to change into my 'backup shoes' and was SO SO happy that I had thought to bring them!  I mostly wanted an option that would be easy for me to drive home in, since I knew hubby was planning to drink a bit.  **ha ha A BIT?  He had like 8 Vodka/Red Bulls in about 4.5 hours.  He was SHITFACED.** 

Hubby basically never drinks, but if he hadn't, we'd never have gotten a picture of him SMILING!  I love this picture, & have already ordered a print to have framed.  Yes, he looks extra goofy  but it's so dang CUTE.  LOVE, love, love seeing him smile & relax, especially after the past 11 months of tangible stress.


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