As 2017 comes to an end, it’s been an exciting one for the Muff Ladies. This wee gang of ladies who wine and dine on occasion had yet many memorable nights out over the past year. And they rounded the year off in style just last Friday. These gals really do know how to end a year in style. With champers of course!

Friday saw the group of Ladies and their better (lesser!!) halves congregate at the infamous Red Door and Country House in Fahan. It was of course the occasion to celebrate the wedding of one of the group’s son’s, to his now bride. And needless to say no-one arrived in a bread van, a bicycle or even an ambulance!!!

As the bride and groom exchanged their vows in this beautiful setting, the ladies smiled and even teared up at times, as the genuine love between this young couple encapsulated all. The beautiful bride in her exceedingly elegant gown smiled as she walked up the aisle. The cycling groom managed to lift his jacket to expose his race number fixed firmly to his waistcoat. Oh, the cycling frenzy of this wedding wasn’t omitted. And there was even a bicycle on stand-by throughout the day should he have decided to make his escape. Not that it was ever an option!

And the marriage was made, and the Muff Ladies did what they do best – unwinded in comfy seats with a little glass of bubbly. And as ever, they got friendly with the lovely bar man. Yes, the said bar-man then proceeded to allow those lovely ladies to remain seated throughout the afternoon and he just popped by every 5 minutes or so to top up those glasses!! And in the end, he just left us the bottle!

Prior to dinner, the speeches became focus of the evening. All went swimmingly and as Ronán explained that he met his beautiful bride on the night he announced his retirement, we ladies did smile as little did he know that from that moment forward, he’d never be able to retire in his life – sorry Ronán, you met the love of your life on that fateful night, retirement is now only an ideal many men dream off!!

As the delicious dinner commenced, those ladies were well ready for some food. The bubbly glasses had been filled once too many and it really was time to allow some well needed carbs to flow down the esophagus. There was laughter, chuckles and stories. Between bites to eat, sips of wine, those ladies never stopped chattering. There were grandchildren stories, Christmas stories and stories never to be repeated. A meal, company and conversation which could have been endless. But alas, the music had to set up.

Another comfy seat by the fireside, and some wine. Giggles were endless. The bride and groom visited on a few occasions and I’m sure wondered why on earth they invited these ‘crazy ladies’ to their wedding day.  I just hope they didn’t spy the flip-flops taken from the bathroom and stored under our table for later. We weren’t missing out on comfy feet!!

And the music began. As ever the bride and groom took to the floor. As Ed Sheeran’s Perfect played, even I had a tear in mine eye. What a perfect song to kick-start a perfect dance for this wonderful couple. As Heartland’s I Loved Her First then followed, it really was a special moment as two families became one. I’ve never before seen the bride and the grooms families come together and dance together with their bride and groom. There was just something special as they all danced close to this very apt song.

And so the music played, the ladies wee feet danced and they danced. Thank heavens for nicking those flip-flops earlier in the day – don’t tell R and R (the bride and groom) we did such.

As the night came to a close it was with heavy hearts that all did depart. A lovely day was had among friends. An absolutely lovely wedding was celebrated for two amazing young people. And the Muff Ladies showcased once more the importance of friendship in life.

On the morning of that wedding day last Friday, I saw the grooms sisters’ facebook update read: “Today is the day that two sisters become three.” That sentiment set up the day that followed. Family is always at the fore. And as friends, we really do make a family of our own. So these Muff Ladies really are a wee family themselves now too.

Here’s wishing Ronán and Rachel every happiness from this day forward. My wedding motto always remains: ‘Live well, Laugh Often, Love always.’ May you both do this from hereon.

And as for us Muff Ladies, here’s to many more nights of fun in 2018.