Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Chandy’s Wedding: The Reception

The reception was held at a Dallas event center which both my brother and mom have been to before. We (Chris, me and 2 of my former co-workers and 1 of their wives) arrived early and found our way to the cash bar. We noticed that it was open seating, but were fearful of sitting at one of the front tables since there were no reserved signs for the bridal party and family. We later learned from Alex & Chandy that they were trying to for the non-formal reception with the open seating, but did in fact forget to reserve seats for themselves and their families. Good thing they are such an easy going couple, they just went with the flow and sat wherever there were seats.

Chris & me at the reception
The buffet was delicious! It contained salad, corn, a marinated grilled chicken (my favorite), new potatoes, beef, rolls and ice tea or lemonade. We finished eating around the time the toasts and cake cutting started. Her cake was beautiful 3 tier with cherry blossoms that went along with all of her stationary items. The groom’s cake looked like a under water treasure chest, which I think actually has something to do with the online video game that they both play.

Chandy & Alex cutting the cake

Their first dance was actually to a song I heard a while back & have downloaded on my ipod “1, 2, 3, 4” by the Plain White T’s. They were too cute as they danced around to a song with a tempo a little faster then your average first dance song.

Their first dance

After Chandy & her father shared a spin around the dance floor, we gave her our congratulations and made our exit (Chris had to work Sunday morning)

Will you be having a buffet at your wedding?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Chandy’s Wedding: The Ceremony

This past weekend was the wedding of my former co-worker, Chandy. We started our first jobs out of college on the same day, doing the same job and thankfully became pretty good friends (if we hadn’t it would have been super boring with no one to talk to!). Since we are in the middle of planning our own wedding, I noticed that I paid closer attention to things trying to pick up tips.

Chris & me outside the church
The ceremony was held in a beautiful church and began at 6 pm (I like that it was right on time!). One difference that I noticed off the bat was that the church coordinator had us stand when the processional began (rather that standing when the bride enters). The pastor forgot to tell us to sit until 10 – 15 mins into the ceremony. Good thing my shoes were comfortable!
Chandy was beautiful in her dress, which I actually got to see pictures of before the wedding since the photographer that did her bridals is the same awesome photographer that will be doing our wedding (therefore I stalk her blog on a regular basis).
Chandy walking down the aisle
I think it was beautiful that Chandy smiled and cried a little as she walked down the aisle to her soon to be husband, it made me emotional. I hope I’ll be able to keep it together as I walk to meet Chris at the alter. The ceremony was wonderful and lasted around 30 mins.

Chandy & Alex saying their vows

You may now kiss the bride

After the ceremony they stayed to take the formal family portraits while we headed off to the reception.

How long do you thing is a good amount of time for a ceremony?

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Year of the Weddings

This weekend I will be attending my 5th wedding for the year (out of 7 that I was invited to). It seems as though all of my friends are getting married at the same time! This weekend’s wedding will be the only one in Dallas, which is a nice change of pace from the driving and hotel rooms for each of the other weddings.

Each wedding has been different from the last which makes them all a joy to go to. All of my friends have had a wedding that was “them” from a small town/large guest count wedding to the winery destination wedding to the church wedding followed by cake and punch reception.

After getting engaged I started to take more mental notes of things that I liked and maybe not so much liked that could later be incorporated into (or excluded from) our own wedding.

I like the incorporation of pictures into the reception decoration similar to Will & Jessica’s wedding

I loved the use of fruit in this centerpiece at my friend Katie’s wedding

Due to sparkler restrictions, we’ll probably do a bubble send off like this one at Jason & Mallory’s wedding

Besides the first hand wedding tips, these weddings have all been a chance to share in the special day with my friends. I am so happy for each and every one of them and can’t wait for them return the love and share in our big day.

Did you get any ideas for your wedding after attending a friend’s wedding?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

My Inspiration

With the popularity of wedding inspiration boards rising, I decided to make one of my very own.

I’m not very good with Photoshop or Illustrator (which I don’t have on my laptop, but Mr. E does have on his) so I went the easy route and made my board in PowerPoint. I opened up a new slide and deleted the default text boxes. I’ve been collecting pictures for quite some time so the hardest part was going back and finding all of the sources for those pictures.

I started inserting pictures, resizing and moving them around so they would overlap and fit on the screen. I added pictures from online as well as a couple of my own DIY projects that have already been completed.

I played around (for quite some time) with the set up until I was happy with what I had. I selected all of the pictures by starting in the left corner with my mouse and dragging it over all of the pictures. Once selected I right clicked and grouped them. After they were grouped I right clicked again and saved it as a .png picture.

The only problem I really had was with an online picture of a pair of blue shoes. For some reason, that picture would show in PowerPoint, but once I saved it as a picture and uploaded it to my planning web site it would only show as a white area. I thought well, maybe I didn’t include it when I grouped the pictures. I tried again, and again had the same outcome so I found another pair of blue shoes (well really the picture is of only one shoe) to include in the board and that picture worked just fine.

And here’s the finished board!

Sources from left to right, top to bottom, starting in the top left corner
Row 1: 1, 2 (DIY), 3, 4
Row 2: 1, 2 (DIY), 3, 4
Row 3: 1 (DIY), 2, 3
Row 4: 1 (picture painted by Mr. E), 2, 3 (DIY), 4 (DIY)

Did you create an inspiration board to collect all of your ideas?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Hello Fall!

Today is the official start of Fall! Along with the cooler weather (how many days of 100+ degree weather can one really handle?) one of my favorite things about the fall is that we leave the TV reruns of the summer behind for new shows/new episodes of our favorite TV shows.


Say Yes to the Dress on TLC began airing new shows a couple weeks, and I watched a couple with my mom. One of the episodes that we watched dealt with a girl looking for a dress along with a big entourage including her mother, future mother-in-law, sisters, and bridesmaids. My first thought was that I don’t think I’ll be dress shopping with that many people. I think (which was illustrated on the episode) that too many opinions can make it hard for a bride to really make a decision about her dress. I will probably search a little with my mom, and hopefully get one weekend to go with my 4 bridesmaids to get their opinion. The mother in this episode seemed really upset with the dress choices that her daughter picked out which all had to be pink to go with the pink and leopard print wedding colors. The mother didn’t really understand that white just wasn’t her daughter’s idea of the perfect dress.

Mom and I talked during the episode and she hopes to be nothing like that mother, which I don’t think she has anything to worry about since she is awesome! She said that she knows it’s all about me, and the dress needs to be something that I love. I love my mom and I truly value her opinion when it comes to wedding decisions, even if she doesn’t always like what I like, hehe. Even though we don’t plan on buying a dress until next year, I think we might sneak out this fall just to try a couple on to get a better idea of what looks good on me.

Did you have a lot of people go with you when you tried on dresses?

Sunday, September 20, 2009

And I’m Done!

That’s right folks, I’m finally done with my 8 tissue paper pomanders to line our aisle. After the first one, I got the hang of it and was really on a roll. I got through about 5 before I hit the busy/lazy speed bump, so the last 3 have taken a little longer than the others.

I am super happy with the final products which are now hanging in our guest room under some plastic wrap. Here’s hoping that they can last another year and a half!!

Did you have any DIY project that took longer then you had hoped?

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Oktoberfest 2009

Last night we headed out to Addison to meet up with our friends Lora & Brandon (one of 2 married couples in our wedding party) and Laura & Mike for Oktoberfest 2009.

Cheers! (Mike, Laura, me, Chris, Brandon & Lora)

We've never been to Oktoberfest, so we didn't know to bring our own mugs. But no worries, we paid for some there and now have a couple of nice souvenirs (which can be used for all Oktoberfests to come).

Chris holding our souvenir mugs

We drank some good beer, ate bratwurst & strudel & funnel cake and had a wonderful time with friends. We did a little talk of the wedding, and have decided on a great plan for the bachelor/bachelorette parties (more on that later). It is so good to get out of the house (where you can't really go into a room without seeing some DIY project) and spend time with friends that will be with us throughout this journey to the alter.

Lora, Laura & me

Yay for a break from wedding projects

Did you enjoy breaks from all the DIY crafting with friends?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Start the car!

Have you seen those Ikea commercials? The lady checks out and has saved so much she thinks the employee has made a mistake, so she hurries out of the store and yells at the husband to start the car so they can get away with the deals before the employee realizes. That’s how I felt at Michael’s the other day.

As I mentioned before, there’s a pretty good sale going on at Michael’s this week. Couple that with the gift card that I received from my MOH Kristen and BM Colby for my birthday and you get one happy shopper! I stopped at two different Michael’s on Sunday (and will no doubt probably make another stop this week before the sale ends) and picked up all of these wonderful things for the wedding!

Here’s a rundown of what I picked up and how it will be used for the wedding:
- 5x7 picture frame – To frame the sign for the cards next to the picture frame card box Chris will be making after our engagement pictures
- 3 vases – These will be used for the sand ceremony
- 3 packs of Blue & Green crystals - I’ll use to add our initials to the sand ceremony vases
- 2 rolls of 1.5 inch green ribbon - The last two rolls that I need for the invite belly bands
- 4 rolls of thin blue & green ribbon – These will be used on the send off bubbles
- 5 adhesive runner refills – I really like the Xyron runners and will be using those to put together the save the dates & invites
- 6 bags of blue and green marbles – We want to scatter these on the reception tables around the centerpieces to add a little more color to the white lines.
- 2x2 craft punch – To punch out the belly bands and possibly the monogram stickers for the favor boxes
- Photo corners – These will frame/hold the magnet in place in the STD
- Blue ink pad – Works great with our custom return address stamp (purchased off Etsy), for the STD & thank you card envelopes

With all the sales and 50% off coupons I had, I saved about $45 on all of the things purchased. I love me some sales!

Have you found some good sales or bargains on items for your wedding?

Monday, September 14, 2009

A little peek into our taste

Here are a couple of the items that we registered for at Crate & Barrel (all images from Crate & Barrel):

Edge Flute 5oz. - Chris' favorite pick

Halsted 5 Piece Placesetting - Love the weight of these!

Baking mats -Chris & I both loved these when we saw them used by our friends Colby & Chris

Smartpower Premier Stainless Steel Blender - Our current blender is on it's last legs

Sunday, September 13, 2009

My first adventure into registering

My mom received an email (probably as a result of using her email to get the $1 off coupon for the bridal show) from Crate & Barrel for a registering party. The invite indicated that the store would be open on Sunday for the private event, with free food and drink as well as friendly employees to help brides register without the normal everyday crowd. Chris had to work, but we figured we should try it out anyways (by the looks on the other guys that were in the store, I'm sure Chris didn't miss too much). But don't you worry, Chris will be there for the big registering trip at Bed Bath & Beyond!

Mom with the mimosas before we got down to business

We started off with some drinks and quiches and then walked through the furniture. As the store employees informed us, don't feel bad about registering for furniture even if you don't think anyone will buy it for you. Crate & Barrel will send the bride & groom a 10% off certificate after the wedding to buy anything off their registry that they did not receive. We found one dining room table that I liked, and that was really about it so we headed downstairs.

Using the fun scanner to add the table to our list

We ended up registering for about 20 items including silverware, wine glasses and pots & pans. When I went to the computer to set up our registry, I noticed that the only years available were 2008 (hello? hasn't that year passed?) 2009, and 2010. I asked the employee what I should do, and the only answer she could come up with was to use our date and the year 2010 and then later change it online when 2011 is available.

All in all it was a fun way to "dip our toes" into the whole registry process. I can't wait to do it again at Bed Bath & Beyond when it's a little bit closer to our wedding date.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Mock ups for table names

I may have mentioned once or twice that the theme for our wedding is travel. We don’t want to go “overboard” (haha) with the theme, just enough to tie the reception together. Guest will get their first taste of the travel theme with the travel tag on our save the date cards.

Another way to tie in the theme is to show some pictures from the places Mr. E and I were lucky enough to travel to together. I thought the best way to incorporate these pictures would be in the table names. I was inspired by some pictures of table numbers online and got to work on a mock up for our tables.

The tables are all named after places that Mr. E and I have vacationed to (or lived in) and will be constructed out of blue and green scrapbook paper and include my favorite picture from the trip. The first round of mock ups was sloppy quick and a little too big for my liking. I decided that less would be more, and started in on round two.

The first quick mock up

The idea is pretty simple, cardstock with the name glued above the picture. The paper that I used for the trial was purchased at Michael’s (which seems to be my second home since we started planning this wedding) and seems a little flimsy. I may have to take a trip to paper source to get some thicker paper. For the picture I put the mock ups in some little photo clips that I had lying around, but I think we will be using little easels (found at Michael’s, Garden Ridge or online) for the real deal. What do you think?

The 2nd round of mock ups

 Are you incorporating a personal element into your table numbers?

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Alert! Sale At My Second Home

So it seems as though my new second home during the wedding planning has become Michael's. I just got the new ad in the mail and was so excited! Starting on Sunday they are having some of their lowest prices on several items that I could use including:

- Scrapbook paper (normally 30% off, next week it's 40% off)
- Xyron refills (I'll try to stock up on the adhesive runners in preparation for the STDs and Invites)
- Ribbon (normally 50 cents each, next week 3 for $1)
- River rocks/marbles that could be used in decoration on the reception tables (normally $2.49, on sale for 99 cents!)
- Glass bottles/vases (possibly for the sand ceremony?)

The Michael's ad, as you can see I've already ripped out my 50% off coupon

What great timing that this sale just happens to come the week after my MOH Kristen and BM Colby gave me a gift card to Michael's for my birthday. YAY!!!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Roomie Reunion

College Roomies! MOH Kristen, BM Colby & me

Chris and I spent our 3 day holiday weekend down in Houston with my two college roommates Kristen and Colby and their significant others Raul and Chris. My two roomies happen to both be in our wedding party, Kristen is my MOH and Colby is one of the bridesmaids. Chris (Colby's husband) is also one of my Chris' groomsmen.

Kristen & Colby (along with their guys) surprised me with a cookie cake for my birthday (which was last Sunday) and a gift card to Michael's!!! How awesome is that?? Now I can get more supplies for DIY projects!

YUM Cookie Cake!

We spent the weekend catching up on life, talking about wedding plans, watching college football, heading out on Colby & Chris' boat on the lake, playing some 3 on 3 basketball, watching the new Brad Pitt movie and playing some games.

The guys fixing the tire on the boat trailer

Even little Gypsy had a great time with Colby & Chris' dogs Charlie and Slider

It was a wonderful, but short weekend with 2 of the wonderful girls that will be standing by my side on my wedding day.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

I wanna see my name in lights!

Well really, it's print, but close enough. A couple months ago I followed up on a post on the Knot to meet with a freelance writer and 5 other females to do an article on rings and engagements.

We met on a Saturday afternoon for high tea at a cute little French bistro and dished about our engagements, rings, and wedding plans all over tasty sandwiches, desserts and tea (it being Texas and the summer, I opted for iced tea over hot tea). When we were leaving the writer told us that we could expect a copy of the magazine in our mail.

After work today I couldn't wait to get the leash on Gypsy and head for the mailbox, and there it was!! The magazine is called Instore and is a magazine for jewelry store owners. Below are some pictures of the group, single shot of me and a depiction of the famous soup can that Mr. E proposed with (sorry for having to blur out the last name)

If you have been watching the latest season of Bridezilla, you'll recognize the girl on my left.

The infamous soup can rendition

What wedding related magazines have you read since (or before) you became engaged?

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Almost forgot to mention... we are now under 600 days till the wedding!!! Gotta take all the milestones we can get hehe.

When to begin the dress search?

I find myself to be the type of bride who wants to have a pretty (non-poofy) dress without a big price tag. I understand that this is “our special day” and I do want to look beautiful, but my common sense also tells me that we do not have the money to blow a big part of our budget on a dress that will most likely only be worn once (unless we do a day after or trash the dress session with Lynn Michelle).

Looking online and in magazines is the extent of dress searching that I have done up to this point. It feels like it’s just too early to go and look at dresses for a wedding that isn’t until April 2011. The best part of my future dress search is that I have an amazing mother, and 4 wonderful bridesmaids that actually want to go dress shopping with me. I’ve read about the unfortunate brides on the Knot that find themselves with friends and family that just don’t want to spend a day watching them try on pretty white dresses.

Here are a couple of dress ideas that I have come across and like at this point (we’ll have to see how they look on me to know if I still like them hehe):
(both pictures from David’s bridal)

As you can see the type of dress I'm going for is more flowy, possibly lace, lighter weight so I can dance the night away.
I’m planning to schedule a weekend in the early spring of next year to go to stores and start trying on dresses. I’m super excited!