Thursday, February 24, 2011

black, black, black and blue

This past Saturday, the future mister and I met with our officiant for the first time - wooo! And he didn't "fail" us or deem us unfit to be wed (not that I actually thought he would) - double wooo!

While we were in the area, we decided to hit up the outlet stores. After finding some new clothes at J Crew, we made our way down to Brooks Brothers to check out the ties.

There, nestled in between the other blue ties, was the PERFECT color. The color that I never in a million years thought I would be able to find (in a tie).

(good thing I carry the bridesmaid dress swatches with me wherever I go)

BUT there was only one and we would need six. The very nice salesman who was helping us out left to make a phone call. We were in luck - the closest other store had five ties and could ship them to us for free. Wait a second...could things really fall into place that easily?? I tell you, it was wedding serendipity at it's finest, so I snatched those babies right up.

I was so amazed by my good fortune that I sadly didn't listen very closely to the future mister's opinion. He agreed that the blue was the perfect color, but he wanted skinny black ties. We decided to try the suit on with both ties (since he already has a black skinny one from our e-photos) and, luckily, we can always return the blue ones - so no harm, no foul.

Cute, but very traditional/very wedding-y

Oh my gosh - hold me back! Are you sure you aren't a GQ model??

I have to hand it to him - the future mister was right with this one. The blue may look perfect in theory, but the black tie can't be beat. Now we just have to find black ties for the rest of the groomsmen.

Which would you choose - black or blue? Were you ever quick to make a wedding decision (that you were soooo sure about) only to be proven wrong after the fact?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Seriously. I'm not sure I can even get out the words to describe how amazing this is.

This is our ring bearer pillow. Nancy (the hankie lady) made this. Out of antique linens. This was the example my mom showed her:


Sorry Martha, you lose this one. Honestly, I'm not sure I can even express how beautiful I think this is. All I keep imagining is my future daughter(s) and granddaughter(s) using this same pillow at their weddings, adding their names and wedding dates to the back. Passing down a piece of history - that started with me and the future mister. Such an amazing heirloom piece. Such a beautiful gift.

Do you plan on passing down any of the items you used at your wedding? Or do you have any heirloom pieces that were passed down to you?

Monday, February 21, 2011


They say that love will find you when you least expect it. I didn't believe them.

Four years of college almost over and nothing more than a few dates with a few guys and some talking. Nothing ever went anywhere. High school had ended with much of the same, except instead of dates, they were at least boyfriends. But does it really count when nothing ever lasted for more then three months? If I said that thinking something was wrong with me never crossed my mind, I'd be lying. My mom told me that it was because I was the marrying kind, not the dating kind. Smart woman.

Then at the beginning of spring semester senior year a friend/sorority sister suggested that I meet her best guy friend. This wasn't the first mention, but I had already forgotten that she had wanted me to bring said guy as my semi-formal date in the fall. I said no and opted to go alone because he had just broken up with his long term girlfriend. Formals aren't much fun if your date is hurt, brooding and pissed off at the female kind, which is what I assumed his mindset would be after a breakup.

I wasn't very interested in this second attempt at matchmaking. There were four more months until graduation and my biggest concern, at that point, was what I was going to do with my life. Why on earth would I spend the time and energy getting to know someone new when it would all end the moment after the cap and gown came off and my tiny car left my little college town behind?

But my friend got my roommates involved. Soon he started showing up at the places I hung out. The first time I saw him in person and not just in facebook photos was at a party at my house. He was a bright red hat in a sea of mostly sorority girls. We were never introduced. And we didn't talk to each other. But I could hear him nearby talking to other people while I stood near my kitchen sink chatting with friends. Then he showed up at my sorority little sister's house one night. This time it was a much smaller group of people. Five or six, I think. Still no formal introduction. There wasn't any one on one interaction, but I remember making fun of his accent.

I'm not exactly sure when, but soon after that we started chatting online. It was around my birthday/Valentine's Day that he began to express interest (to our friend) in wanting to ask me out on a date. Maybe in the next few weeks, was my reply. I had been on a few first-ish dates around Valentine's Day before and they always ended up awkward. Add a birthday to the mix and it's just too much pressure (in my opinion).

Well, today marks four years since our first date (and three months until our wedding!). I remember exactly what I wore - jeans, a pink tank top and an aqua sweater. I picked the restaurant and then forgot how to get there (and since this was pre-smartphone days, neither one of us could look up the directions). We were two (almost) strangers, aimlessly driving around a city 30 minutes from where we attended school, trying to get our bearings. Luckily we eventually made it, albeit late for our reservation. Surprisingly, though, there was no awkwardness (aside from first date nerves) - not during the long car ride, not during dinner. We shared a bottle of wine and got to know each other.

That night was the beginning of a wonderful thing. It was the beginning of a relationship spanning four years, four states, many moves, two grad schools, two jobs, one crazy roommate, an amazing engagement, lots of memories, smiles, laughter, stress and tears. It was the beginning of me realizing that they are right - love does find you when you least expect it.

Happy four years to my soon to be husband. The first four were wonderful and I have no doubt that, between now and forever, the rest will be wonderful, too.

Friday, February 18, 2011

guestbook prompts

As I mentioned, here is a possible contender for the prompt books that my mom and I found at Hobby Lobby:

It is obviously meant to be used as a photo album, but the pages are blank card stock inside (rather than plastic sleeves). And I LOVE that the future mister and I can incorporate some of our engagement photos if we end up using these.

Now, what are some good prompts?

Here are the questions that MSW provided with their template:

Some good...
  1. What's the best marriage advice you've ever gotten?
  2. What's your favorite memory of us? What's your funniest memory of us? (one or the other, not both)
  3. What should we name our kids? (this one could get some funny responses)
  4. What should we do on date nights?
  5. What's the most romantic place we should visit? Where should we go for our 10-year anniversary? (these two questions are too similar, don't you think?)
  6. What should we do during our first year of marriage?
  7. Where do you see us in 25 years?
  8. When did you know we were meant for each other?

Some not so good...
  1. What's the most romantic movie you've ever seen?
  2. What were you really thinking during our vows?

And here are a few others that I found online:
  1. Share your favorite moment of the wedding so far....then update later if you have a new favorite moment.
  2. What are your predictions for our future? (very similar to "Where do you see us in 25 years?" - I think I like this wording better)
  3. Why is Heather perfect for Sam? Why is Sam perfect for Heather?
  4. What's the best thing about being married?
  5. What are your tips on how to be a great husband/wife?

What are your favorite questions of the ones listed above? Do you have any others to share?

Also, we will have about 20 tables (6 - 30" hi boys, 8 - 36" rounds and 6 - 48" rounds) in total at the reception. Should we have a book for each table or just 10 to 12 scattered throughout?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

mmmm menu

One of the items we finalized (basically; of course we can still change it if we want to) at our meeting last week was the menu! Just a fair warning - if you're not hungry now, you might be at the end of this post!

After the ceremony our guests will be greeted with an open bar and a scrumptious hors d'oeuvre station consisting of:
  • Baked brie filled with raspberry preserves, wrapped in a puff pastry and baked until golden brown
  • Hot baked crab dip with sherry - served warm with french bread rounds
  • Warm blue cheese and bacon spread - accompanied by grain and butter crackers
  • Hummus trio - served with pita chips
  • Seasonal vegetable display - accompanied by herb dip
Are you ready for some more??? We will also have a main buffet consisting of:
  • Signature Moser salad - field greens, strawberries, blue cheese, walnuts and Moser Vinaigrette
  • Marinated and grilled chicken breast slices seasoned with jerk seasonings - served with peach salsa
  • Smoked brisket, rubbed with spices and smoked slowly
  • Pulled pork - served with apple butter BBQ sauce
  • Old fashioned tomato bread pudding - a mixture of tomato, cheese, scallions, bread crumbs and herbs
  • Baked garlic cheese grits
  • Roasted vegetables
  • Cheese biscuits
  • Soft yeast rolls
  • Assortment of fresh fruit - served with sweet cream fruit dip

AND to top it all off, a delectable display of:
  • Seven assorted cakes - three white velvet raspberry, two Spanish lemon and two chocolate
You have already heard about the cake many times before. Oh, and my parents even got to enjoy their very own cake tasting this weekend since the future mister picked up a strawberry cake for my birthday. They loved it! I'm in the mood for pulled pork. I hope our guests enjoy what we selected. The future mister and I tried to get a pretty good mix of foods we both enjoy (i.e. baked brie, grilled veggies for me, blue cheese dip and grits for him). Hopefully we get to eat some of the deliciousness on the wedding day!

What are/were some of your favorite items on your menu? Those of you who are already married - were you able to eat any of it on your wedding day?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

thumbprints, signatures, thoughts and well wishes

A long time ago, probably pre-engagement, I saw this lovely guestbook and thought it was the greatest idea ever.

But alas, we won't be having a photo booth - so throw that idea right out the window.

Luckily the Internet is chock full of unique ideas:



(source - probably more appropriate for a smaller wedding or bridal shower, but still so cute)

My personal favorite, though, is the thumbprint wedding tree - such a great piece to hang up and display after the wedding! And, of course, there are many different kinds to choose from.

Last week, I saw a twist on this idea that I thought was pretty cool. The bonus is that guests don't have to walk around the reception with green thumbs.

But....with something like this all we'll have at the end of the wedding are signatures. What if Grandma Patsy or Great Aunt Irene want to write a nice congratulations or share a piece of marriage wisdom? I'll fully admit that I'm a sentimental sap and love to read through old cards and notes. And the first thing out of the future mister's mouth when I showed him the thumbprint trees was something along the lines of - I don't like it because our guests can't write us any messages. Good thing I already had a plan!

I saw these books months ago in the pages of Martha Stewart Weddings and thought that by putting a different one on each of our tables it would be a great way to get our guests to mingle! The reception is a cocktail buffet, so there will be a mixture of 36 and 48 inch rounds and 30 inch hi boys. Personally, I would find it fun to hop around from table to table to write an answer in each book.

Initially, I was thinking of just purchasing some kraft paper moleskines to use as the different books, but mom and I found something better while browsing through the craft stores this weekend. I'll be sure to share once I get around to taking a photo!

What did you use as your guest book? Do you think having a thumbprint tree and books on the tables would be asking too much of our guests?

Monday, February 14, 2011

inspiration strikes again

First off - I hope you all had a nice weekend! Wedding wise, mine was pretty successful - I've got tons to share this week.

I'm sure you've all probably experienced finding inspiration when you least expect it. Something really great popped out at me in the entrance to Hobby Lobby this weekend. I was there with my mom and she stopped to peruse the craft, hobby and DIY books at the entrance to the store. Books that I would just pass on by. But we were already standing there, so I started browsing and I found the PERFECT option for our flower girl basket. On Friday, I told our florist that we could use whatever he had available. It certainly wasn't something in the forefront of the crafting/DIY section of my mind. Seriously, though. This was too good, and too easy, to pass up.


A flower girl basket made out of a crocheted lace doily! All you do is take a doily, drench it in fabric stiffener and shape it over the bottom of a bowl. Add a ribbon handle and fill with flower petals and Voila! I bought a cheap-o test doily and some fabric stiffener at Jo-Ann's. If my test is successful then I'll move on to use one of the nice doilies I have. So excited.

Where are some of the places you found inspiration when you weren't expecting it?

Friday, February 11, 2011

happy weekend!

Yay for Fridays! I'll be leaving work early today, which deserves an even bigger YAY! My parents got into town last night and my mom and I have a meeting with Epting Events this afternoon. We'll be meeting with someone from their floral team to discuss bouquets and centerpieces. Hopefully we'll go over timing, set up and some of the other little details, too. I'm especially happy that I was able to schedule this so that my mom can be included. Sometimes she just has an eye for things, or creative suggests that I just don't think of. And because I don't want this to be a completely picture-less (read: boring) post, here's the floral inspiration board I made for Epting this morning:

(all images from Once Wed)

Hope you all have a fabulous weekend!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

they're here....

Wedding dreams, that is.

Luckily nothing quite as bad as being naked up at the alter in front of hundreds of guests, but they definitely weren't happy, shiny, rainbow dreams. Last week I faintly remember dreaming about my wedding day hair. I miraculously woke up on the wedding day with super long and luxurious (and very blonde) curly locks. But then my stylist decided to just pull it into a low side pony a la Katie Holmes.

And I hated it because it didn't look anything like the inspiration I showed her.

This morning's dream was all kinds of wrong. First we were getting married in a church instead of outside. Not all of the guests were seated yet, but the day of coordinator sent my first bridesmaid down the aisle - and one of the other bridesmaids wasn't even dressed yet! Oh, and I should note that my dream bridesmaids weren't my real life bridesmaids but instead some random people that I knew in high school and college. So bridesmaid one is on her way down the aisle and we're freaking out and trying to get bm two dressed. Another bridesmaid starts complaining about her dress and how she thinks it is so ugly. I'm trying to keep my cool and simply remind her that I allowed them to pick any dress they wanted from the LulaKate line AND she only has to wear it for a few hours.

Once all the bridesmaids are taken care of, I run into the restroom to do a final once over before my walk down the aisle. The weather was extremely hot and humid for May, so I was sweating just a bit. Guests are still not seated, so I'm dodging people left and right on my way to the bathroom (and getting upset that they are seeing me before the ceremony). I walk in to find ladies drying their armpits with the hand dryers.

(source - I've never seen Desperately Seeking Susan, but this is what came up when I googled "drying armpits with hand dryer" - I love google)

This doesn't make sense in so many ways (a. we're in a church, so it should be air conditioned and b. hand dryers are hot, so wouldn't they make you sweat more?), but dreams are crazy. Anyway...I take a look in the mirror and I have no makeup on, my hair is in a messy ponytail, and it looks like I just got back from an hour long workout at Jazzercise and decided to throw my wedding dress on over my sweaty body. Yuck. So I tear out of the restroom to find my mother and start wailing at her to please make me look beautiful. And right before I wake up, I realize that I hadn't yet seen our photographer and that I forgot to ask someone to check that she was there.

Whoa. What a great way to start the day, no?

What was your craziest wedding dream/nightmare? I've noticed that the dreams are starting to come more frequently the closer w-day approaches. Anyone else have that problem?

Monday, February 7, 2011

ringing in a new week

The jewelry store called on Friday and my wedding band is ready - over a month and a half early! We have it on 90-day layaway; so because we won't be picking it up until late March/early April, I asked them to email us some photos.

I love it and can't wait to see how it looks next to my engagement ring! Since my e-ring was custom designed, the jeweler simply tweaked the CAD rendering that they already had on file to create a band that would match perfectly.

How did you pick out your wedding band? Did you go for a matching set, custom design or something completely different?