Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Inspiration for My Girls

My current idea for my girls' dress is to have them all pick a black dress and call it good. Why? Well for two reasons really. One, because I've been in several weddings and have only actually worn one of the dresses again. Which one was that? The black dress.

Now, that black dress was for a wedding where we all had the same black dress and it was one that was purchased specifically for the wedding. But, I still managed to wear it again (at least twice, maybe more). Also, this is an excellent way for someone with a tighter budget to be able to wear something they have in their closet (or borrow from someone else), or if they want to splurge on something new, then they can! Win-win-win!


And two? I heart pictures like this:



Source (Photo by Laura Kay Photography)

Seriously - there's just something that makes me so happy about this look. I think it's because it allows each of my fantastic ladies to let a little of her personality shine through. Also, I love shoes and I've been on a massive shoe restriction lately, so this means I can live vicariously through all the shoe choices they make!

I'm not sure if this idea is the one we'll ultimately go with, but I haven't come up with anything else that I like better. I also have other ideas for adding a little bit of color to the overall look, because it will be a wedding in the woods and color is good. But before I unveil all those, let's look at some of my other black bridesmaid dress inspiration:



Mrs. Avocado's beautiful ladies: Source (Photo by Kelli Nicole Photography)

Jenna of That Wife and Mrs. Avocado from Weddingbee had her lovely ladies wear different black dresses. I really like how each one picked something that worked for her and made her look great.



Source (Photo by Rodrigo Cassou Photography)

I love the longer dresses, and I really like all the different necklines. I haven't decided whether I want my girls in short or long dresses (or whether I mind if some have short or some have long? I think I want a general consistency of length... but I'm still mulling that possibility over).

But whatever length we do, I definitely want the colorful shoes peeking out! That first picture is still my favorite!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Making Jewelry for the Girls

We still haven't decided exactly what we are going to do for the girls' dresses yet. I have several ideas, but one thing I knew I wanted to do was to create jewelry for them to wear. (Mainly because I love the idea of making something for my wonderful friends, and also if they end up hating them it wasn't something super expensive that they'll never wear again!).


So I spent some time on Etsy* and bought some blue beads, and black beads and green beads,



and of course you need the hooks and the chain in order to create the earrings and necklaces.



I have an idea for the design that I'll create (I'm aiming to create something that mimics the necklace I've purchased for myself to wear - from yet another Etsy vendor), but I'll wait to share the design until I've played around with the beads to see what the final form ends up being. Now I just can't wait for all my goodies to arrive!

(And yes, I realize that since we haven't made a final decision on the dresses, there's a chance that the necklaces won't work. They'll go well with my favorite idea for the dresses, so that's what I'm working with - and if they end up not working, I'll find some more beads and make something else and give these to them for some other reason!)

*All photographs are from yadanabeads' Etsy store, which is where I purchased all of the supplies pictured in this post.

Monday, June 28, 2010

My Girls

I had a pretty hard time when it came to picking the girls I wanted to stand up for me during the wedding. See, I have been supremely blessed with the number of really great girlfriends in my life. There are the girls that I've known since the fifth grade when I moved cross-country with my family. There are the two sets of girlfriends from college - the ones I lived with my freshman and sophomore years and the group that became my roommates and pseudo-roommates during my junior and senior years. Then I went to law school and found another fabulous group of ladies there. While I love them all, there's about 16 of them and that's entirely too many people for our wedding. So, in thinking about it, I realized that what made sense for me was to choose the girls I've known the longest.

My sister was always going to be my maid of honor - she's been there for me whenever I've needed her (even if we fought so much during high school that my mom was afraid we'd grow up hating each other!)


This is us when we were 1 and 3 I think.

We actually lived together for two years while going to grad school, and it was so wonderful to have that time together to get to know each other as adults. She has since moved farther away which makes me sad, but we still get to see each other every so often.


This was on a trip I took down to visit her - gotta love the hold out the camera and hope you're sort of in the frame pictures!

My other ladies who will be standing up for me on my big day have been friends of mine since elementary school. I met three of them in the 5th grade (I was so mad that my mom insisted I join a Girl Scouts troop when we moved, but it turned out to be the best decision I could have made, as I am still friends with everyone I met through that troop 18 years later). My fourth bridesmaid I met in the 6th grade when her family moved to town. We've ended up remaining friends through middle school, high school, moving away to different colleges, boy troubles, getting our first real jobs, going to graduate school, weddings and much more (lots, lots more - I really am grateful that we are all still friends!). There have been lots of ups and downs, and we don't see each other as often as we would like, but they have always been there for me. I can't wait for them to be up there on the big day!

I found this picture when I was going through some of my old pictures for their present that I sent to them when I asked them to be bridesmaids. This was taken during our junior year of college, right before several of us were leaving the country to study abroad.


I love that I have this picture of all of us - I have more from when we were younger, but those are all in hard copy and I don't have them on my computer yet. (And no, I didn't actually go to LMU, but my brother did and that has always been my favorite sweatshirt. In fact, until digging out this picture, I had no idea quite how long I'd had that sweatshirt... I still love it!). I'm so excited to get to spend more time with these girls, as well as all my other girlfriends, as wedding festivities start to pick up. I know that not everyone will be able to make it to various parties and activities, but I love that I have a fabulous excuse to get everyone together now!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Comprehending the Incomprehensible

I wrote most of this post immediately after I heard the news. I've held off posting this because I didn't know if should, or if I wanted to. But it's been in the back of my mind since it happened. Yes, this post is about me and my reaction, but that's all I can understand at this point.

*********

I just learned that someone I only ever had the briefest of contacts with has died. I don't really know much about what happened, and I don't want to post any details out of respect for privacy. But I had to write something. I'm just a bit overwhelmed by this. I know what to do when a family member dies (I have lost three grandparents through the years). I know what to do when you find out that an old friend from high school who you haven't seen in years dies in an accident on the other side of the state. I know what to do when I read news stories about strangers and the horrible tragedies that have befallen them.

I don't know what to do with this. I didn't know him well, but I did know him. I haven't seen him in years, but I can recall specific nights spent together with mutual friends.

I think the part that is hitting me most directly, is the fact that he was engaged. I cannot fathom what I would do, or what my life would be like, if anything were to happen to B. We've dreamed so many dreams together, and have built so many plans already toward what we want our life to be. How do you keep going knowing that your partner isn't there anymore? How do you work toward those shared dreams when one of you won't see them realized? I've always been an independent person, but my life is completely intertwined with B's now, and I wouldn't even know where to start. But I guess that's the point - you don't know until you are faced with the situation. And then you go on because you have to, I suppose.

I don't know who his fiance is, and I hope that she has family and friends to support her through this time. But I just wanted to put it out in the universe that while I can't understand what she, or the rest of his family and close friends are going through, my thoughts are with them. And that since it's happened I've tried to hug B a few more times, and tell him that I love him just a bit more often. It shouldn't have to take something like this to realize how many lives you've actually touched. Please take the time to make sure your loved ones know how much they mean to you.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Are Moods Contagious?

I'm one of those people who is really affected by other people's moods. To a surprising degree, I think my mood depends on those around me. I think the proper term is that I empathize to a high degree with those around me. This sometimes drives B crazy as I can be in a fine mood and then after spending time with someone else I'll be a total debbie downer. I do recognize this in myself, and I do try to be aware of it and not let other people affect me as much anymore, but it's a work in progress.

I read an article earlier about how social networks affect divorce rates - the idea that divorce can spread through social groups and affect friends, family and coworkers is fascinating to me. This post really isn't about divorce at all (though I am grateful at how hard my family and friends have been working on their marriages and families!), but the idea of things spreading through social networks.

As I've spent more time on blogs and twitter, I find myself being more affected by what these people that I don't know are going through. But I feel like I know them! And life is hard for them right now! And I empathize with that! It really doesn't help that I've been going through an extremely rough period myself for the last six months or so, and so I think that's been making me more susceptible to feeling like this, but still. I feel like a lot of the people whose blogs I love have been going through rough times (including some people that I do know in real life which makes it even harder because I just want to show up on their doorsteps with hugs and baby puppies and cupcakes. And I can't). It makes me sad that I can't do anything while they're going through their hard times, and I want the sunshine and roses to come back to their lives (and let's face it, to mine too).

I think it's one more thing that I need to keep an eye on now - and remind myself to step away from the interwebs when I need to. Because I do need to take care of myself first. But to anyone out there who's reading this - if you ever need a supportive voice from blogland, I'm happy to help. Unless I'm overwhelmed, in which case I'll be back shortly!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Asking the Family

Have you seen that Folgers commercial where the dad and the daughter are having coffee and the dad asks the girl why she came in so late and she eventually tells him that she's engaged and he tells her he talked to her fiance last week? The first time we saw that commercial, B asked if I minded that he didn't talk to my Dad before he proposed.

And honestly? No. Not at all. I have no idea if my Dad expected that B would talk to him before he proposed, but I never had any expectations of that. On the one hand, I think it's nice to let parents know what you're thinking (and notice that I said parents - not just Dad. If he'd talked to my Dad, but not my Mom I think I would have been a little upset actually - even though my Mom might not have been able to keep it a secret from me for too long!). But I don't think it's necessary in the slightest (unless there is a very traditional person in the mix who wants that - then it might be necessary to keep the peace!)

And ultimately, in our situation, I'm so glad that I was the first to know. After all, it's a decision that the two of us are making. Yes, he was the one to ask and I was the one to say yes, but we had talked about marriage and we knew that was where our relationship was headed. While the timing of the proposal was a surprise, the fact that he would ask was not.


The Folgers commercial might depict the more traditional way of how things have been done, but so far I'm pretty happy with the way B and I have handled things. Here's to keeping the traditions we want, throwing out the ones we don't want, and working with all the rest to create the wedding and marriage of our lives.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Why the Hate?

I'm a new member to the blogging community - I've been reading blogs for a couple years now, but I've only been writing this one for about four months (hi to my 5 readers out there! You guys are awesome!). One of the things that strikes me though is how easy it is for people to hate on other bloggers out there! Wow - there is a LOT of pent up frustration out there that gets spewed out in comments (and other mediums, but I'm just talking about blogs and commenters here). Anyway - this has been on my mind recently, especially as several bloggers I read have talked about taking a break from blogging or stepping away from social media for a bit.

But one of my favorite bloggers, Nodakademic, wrote a great post about this very subject today here, which really resonated with me. She made a lot of great points, as did her commenters. I really appreciated her views - and ultimately the question, why the hate? Just because something good happens to someone else doesn't mean you have the right to bash their choices or ideas or whatever. I love blogs because I think it's awesome when people can talk about various issues (without resorting to snarkiness or attacks). I also think it's great when people can express opposing views and not immediately be called out for attacking simply by stating those different views (there was a thread on the dooce community that hit on a lot of these issues about a week ago which made me think about this, too). But ultimately - it just feels like so many people don't think about the real people who are reading their words.

And I also think there's a disconnect with commenters in that they forget they don't know the whole story. No matter how open a blogger is on their own website, you can never know everything that is going on with a person's life. So why on earth would you want to bash them for something good that might have happened to them? Such as hating on John and Sherry at Young House Love now that they are able to afford to both work at home full time on their blog? (I'm picking that because that was one of the things that Nodakademic was speaking to - good things happening to people and commenters jumping all over that and asking how they could even identify with all the "little people" out there anymore).

Anyway - I don't have much more to add to the discussion right now beyond what others have already said, but I just wanted to highlight something that I think is an important and evolving issue. Just because you're an anonymous name on the internet doesn't give you the right to be a hater. Where's the love people?

(Don't worry - we'll be back to our regularly scheduled wedding posts soon, but I just had to take a time out for a minute. See last night's post on needing a mental break.)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Mental Break

I spent this evening watching Wipeout and a new show called Downfall. Extreme mindless entertainment at its best (or worst?). Usually we don't watch shows on live tv anymore - we don't have cable, we watch tv through our main computer (Hulu and Netflix mostly - we do have a tv tuner so we can get local channels and we occasionally record something and watch it while zipping through the commercials). Anyway - the point to this is that tonight I did miss cable just for the channel flipping options. When I watch things on Hulu or Netflix I feel as though I have to find that specific thing I'm in the mood for, rather than just flipping through the guide to see if something catches my eye.

Now, one of the reasons we got rid of cable was so that we would stop the mindless tv watching (the other is that it's so freaking expensive! Even with buying a new computer to create our media center we've saved money in the long run). When we had cable it was WAY TOO EASY to spend entirely too much time in front of the tv. Now when we watch we have something specific in mind (uh, most of the time anyway). But sometimes I just want the mindless tv. I don't want to think about all the issues and problems and stresses and anxiety provoking things going on in my life. I just want to watch people get hit by a padded bar and fall into a pool of water. So tonight that's what I did. And it felt good.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

To My Father

This post is late as it's been a busy weekend (and not over yet, but I wanted to get this up before the day is over). Today is Father's Day. And I am so blessed to have been given such a wonderful dad.



There are so many stories I can tell, but really all I want to say is thanks. Thanks for being my dad. Thanks for being there for our whole family, as you went from a family of you and mom to raising three (very) crazy little kids.



That's me in the middle - I don't know why I got the short mushroom hair cut, but I do think that's one reason why I've generally had long hair as long as I was the one making decisions about my hair!



This is my dad with his younger brother and sister sometime in the 60's I believe.

I love you Dad! Thanks so much for all you've taught me, and all the things I have yet to learn from you. I can't wait to see the next book you'll pick out for me to read, and the next wine you'll open for me to taste.

And I can't wait for you to walk me down the aisle next February.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Weird Wedding Dreams

I had my first wedding dream the other night. And it was weird. But not in a completely bad way (notice I said wedding dream, not wedding nightmare - I haven't had one of those yet).

See, we were getting ready for the wedding - it was probably one or so in the afternoon before the ceremony. And I had my dress on and I was putting on my necklace (both things that I already own, and they were the correct dress and jewelry), but then someone told me that the hair and make-up person wasn't coming. Now, in real life I haven't actually booked anyone for hair and make-up yet, and I'm not certain that I'm going to. But in my dream I had evidently booked someone and they were no longer coming. And I remember being sad that they weren't coming, but that was it. No stress, no crying, nothing other than a feeling of, huh, that kinda sucks. Well, what are we going to do? And I'm pretty sure that I just dried my hair and did my every day make-up (which is next to nothing), called it good and walked down the aisle to meet B.

I'm pretty sure there was more to this story (like another vendor hadn't shown up also? Not sure), but I was amazed at how calm I felt when I woke up - so excited to be marrying B. I really really really hope that I can maintain this feeling on the actual day. I know that I will most likely be much more upset if I book someone and they end up not showing up for my wedding. But I really hope that I can focus on the fact that the wedding is the beginning of our marriage, and the important part is joining our families and friends in celebrating that. I'll let you know after the day if I'm actually able to stay that calm...

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Some of My Favorites

Our photographer search was so easy, it's almost unfair. Awhile back when Kat (aka Mrs. Cherry Pie) was starting her photography business I won a free engagement session with her and Justin (aka Mr. Cherry Pie). This was great for me because I'm pretty sure that this was on Mr. EB's list of things-one-doesn't-really-need, but because it was free he couldn't really say no. And of course, Kat and Justin were beyond fabulous and took some amazing photos. It was a super easy decision after we saw the pictures to book them for our wedding - especially because they're going to be photographing our Friday night welcome dinner as well!


We had such a great time with Kat and Justin taking our engagement photos. It was a super windy day (resulting in lots of random hair pictures), but it didn't rain! Which is pretty amazing, especially given the weather that the Northwest was experiencing at the time, what with 50 degree days and lots of rain (and a little hail every so often). Makes me remember that no matter when one plans a wedding in this part of the country, there's always a decent chance for rain!

We started the day at Pike Place Market before we took the ferry over to the Island to take some more pictures in a park and at my parents house (with Cody!). Mr. EB and I had a lot of fun - though I felt really uncomfortable at times being in front of the camera. Luckily, it was really only for the first bit that I felt weird, and then all of a sudden it felt totally normal to have two cameras in our faces! Is that how it's going to feel on our wedding day too?


Anyway - here are some of the pictures that I loved. I tried to pick some different ones than Kat used in her blog so that you see more of her great work!

















I love this last shot - so very Northwest and us. Can't wait for the wedding!

*All photos by Kat of the fantastic Persimmon Images and used here with permission.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Engagement pictures

Kat blogged our engagement shoot! Woo hoo! I just received the CD in the mail today, so I'll be picking a few that I want to show here as well, but overall I'm really happy with how they turned out. Check them out at Kat's site, Persimmon Images here.

Of course seeing myself in photos always makes me want to lose a few pounds, so hopefully this will work on the motivation to get in better shape for the wedding. I'm so happy to have these photos though, and now I can work on Save the Dates! (yeah, I decided to send them out... so long as I can do them inexpensively!).

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

World Cup

Now, I'm not really much of a soccer fan, but B is, so we've had the games on at our house. And I don't mind it for the most part (except for the damn vuvuzelas making it sound like the players are fighting off bees the whole time, but I digress), but it does get a bit tedious sometimes, especially when after 90 minutes the score remains 0-0 and you wonder why you can't get those 90 minutes back and do something more productive with them?

We ended up recording the England-US game on Saturday and did a remarkably good job at avoiding any and all information about the game until we were able to watch it - so we got to see the gaffe by Green with no idea that it was coming. I'm sure a lot of you have already seen the Lego version, but man, had to post it here anyway. Nothing like a Lego goalie kicking himself for not getting behind the ball.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Good Day

I've been a bit down lately for a variety of reasons, and one thing that I'm learning during this period is to lean on B when I need to. It's tough for me to depend on anyone - I've always been a fairly independent person, always there for others, but generally not asking much in return. And letting B know when I need something from him his hard - I mean, why can't he just READ MY MIND already?? Uh, yeah. Not so much. But I'm working on that. I still need to figure out how best to communicate when I am going through difficult issues so that he can help me with them, or when I just need him to give me a hug (or leave me alone). One of the (many) things that has been getting me down has been the weather. It usually hits me around this time every year when we'll get a couple of nice days and then it pours for awhile and it feels like summer will never come. I think this year has been worse than normal, though, and it's just been hard. For example, this past Thursday was 50 degrees and raining. Luckily Saturday was 80 degrees and sunny. I really needed the vitamin D and being outside, so we decided to go to the coast. Best. Decision. Ever. 
  We stopped along the side of 101 and I took this picture of the beach that we ended up going to - seriously beautiful day in the NW! 

I'm so happy that we got out of the apartment for a bit and got to play with Cody on the beach. Cody had a blast, running along the beach, darting into the waves (freezing but so nice!). And of course - grabbing a big ass log and deciding that's what he wanted to play fetch with (actually, he just kind of chewed it for awhile. Weird dog).


On our way back home we had to stop at the best candy store ever for salt water taffy and seafoam. Apparently nothing cures the blues for me quite like candy and a trip to the beach. There's a lot of things that I still need to work in order to get out of the place I'm currently at, but remembering to get out and play every so often really helps get my head to a better space. Any other ideas for getting yourself out of a funk?

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Comforting Routines

One of my favorite things about living with B has been the household routines that we've created. B is the much better cook and so he usually has dinner ready when I get home at night. I generally do the laundry on the weekends - we don't create a lot of laundry and it's easier to just do it all at once. And cleaning, well, that's not so much a routine as it happens sporadically when the dog has spread out all the stuffing from his toys throughout the entire apartment and I just can't STAND IT ANYMORE! So then we both clean.

But weekend mornings have become my most favorite routine. To the point where I'm always a teeny bit sad when we have somewhere to go in the morning and we can't have our lazy Saturday routine. B is a morning person and doesn't like to sleep in as much as I do. So he and the dog get up and go for the morning walk while I sleep for an extra half hour or so (thanks honey!). Then B comes in and starts the coffee and breakfast (yesterday: toast, over easy eggs, potatoes and bacon - yum!). At some point I get up, and on Saturdays I immediately strip the bed and put the sheets in the washing machine. Because I LOVE clean sheets, and it makes me so happy to think about going to bed on Saturday night with fresh, lovely, clean sheets on the bed.

I think when I started doing this on weekend mornings, B was a bit confused, but I've found it's so much easier to strip the bed and immediately make it back up if I do it as soon as I get up in the morning. Otherwise I forget about it and either don't change the sheets for a couple of days, or the worst is when I strip the bed and then forget to remake it. Until we want to go to bed. And then there are no clean sheets. And that's annoying.

But then I know that the bed is all fresh and clean and that makes me happy. By that point the coffee is ready and breakfast is almost ready and then we can lounge around for a bit before starting the rest of our day. I love these mornings. Almost makes the rest of the week worth it...

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Awww

After taking some photos of the bags that I talked about yesterday, I realized that I had a couple hundred photos still on my camera that I hadn't transferred to the computer yet. Oops. Note to self - don't do that again! I love pictures, and I love being able to look at them, and now I love being able to blog about them! But seriously, I forgot about a lot of the shots that I had on here, and it was fun to go back through them. Do you ever do that with pictures? It's harder to do than when it was all on film (much easier to forget about pictures when you leave them at the drug store to be developed, for example!), but every so often I find these long lost pictures that bring a smile to my face.

I love this one of me and Cody. Obviously, B took this, not me.


And this one of Cody sleeping (yeah, we let him up on the couches. Yes, it was stupid to start letting him do this. But I love to cuddle with him! Plus he's freaking adorable when he sleeps - yeah, I have no kids, so I dote on my dog).


And the last one that I wanted to share is actually from last Thanksgiving. We were up at my parents house for the holiday weekend, and Cody had taken up residence in his usual kitchen spot. See, B has trained Cody that he's not allowed to be in the kitchen while he's cooking (because we've always had small kitchens and Cody gets underfoot really easily). So in our last house, Cody's line was the doorway into the kitchen. In our current apartment the line is where the carpet turns into the kitchen linoleum. Well, in my parents' house the kitchen is much bigger. But he still has a line, and that line is at the end of the counter. He sat there so patiently, just hoping that someone would throw him a little bit of turkey. Unfortunately he has a pretty sensitive stomach, so we try not to give him much beyond his kibble. But I'm pretty sure he had a fun time vacuuming up all the scraps that ended up on the floor that weekend...

Friday, June 11, 2010

I DO Have a Crafty Gene!

I wasn't sure - I really wasn't. The last time I remember sewing anything it was some ridiculous pillow thing that I made on my mom's sewing machine with leftover scrap fabric she had from making quilts for my sister and me. Yeah - my mom makes quilts, I play with leftover scraps. It's fun!

BUT - I really wanted to give it a try, specifically because I really wanted to make part of the gifts that I plan to give to my girls (so girls, if y'all are reading any of this, well, feel free to keep reading, but just know that you're likely to see something similar to one or both of these projects prior to the wedding!)

Now that that's out of the way - let me show you what I made (and we'll just keep quiet about how long it took me to make these, m'kay? Thanks!)

The first project I took on was this clutch that Mrs. Peep Toe blogged about here. Now, first off, I should note that I've had my sewing machine since I was in college. And I graduated from college in 2004. And I had yet to ever take it out of the box. It was still sealed and everything. Oops. And yes, I have lived in multiple places and had carted this thing around with me the whole time. Anyway. Finally decided it was time to break it out. I don't have tutorials here because I'm linking to the tutorials that I used (and also because I didn't want photographic evidence if I messed it up royally). But I'll take pictures of the process next time, I promise! (and all of these photos are taken by moi - working on getting better with my d5000 - I love the camera, but need to play with it more!)

And I thought it turned out pretty well:


And this picture shows the lining:


Now, if you go and look at Mrs. Peep Toe's clutches, they look more like clutches. Mine ended up taller and not quite as wide as I wanted. Whoops. However, it makes quite a nice make-up bag! So score 1 for me :) And I know to make the dimensions different next time. Or just tell my girls that they're make-up bags.

The next project I took on was way more challenging (at least for me). And it involved cutting out a pattern and keeping track of cutting out the right pieces. And yes, making this bag did take me most of a Sunday when I probably should have been working on other things. But that's ok, because I'm really happy with how it turned out (though of course I'd make other changes). But on to pictures of the bag!

Here it is before I attached the handles (I was liking the bag at this point so I was ok with taking an in-between shot):


And here it is after I put the handles on (oh yeah, that's our wine rack behind the chair. Mmm, wine!):


I really like how this came out - yeah there are some issues with my stitching (um, like the fact that I didn't leave enough room between where the snaps are and the top so I couldn't stitch the last seam all the way around... but now I know for next time!). But I really like the pleats of the bag, and I'm super amazed that all the stripes ended up lining up! And the piping around the edge looks really nice if I do say so myself! I found the tutorial for the bag here, after Joy from How Joyful posted a link to it on her blog.

Now, I have no idea if I will actually have time to make these for my girls (There are five girls standing up on my side, plus Mr. Eggs' sister on his side). So, I'd have to figure out a more efficient way to make 6 of these. I'm thinking at the very least a rotary cutter and cutting mat need to be in my future (because wow did it take a long time to cut out all the pieces with scissors!). But that's the goal anyway!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

IslandWood

As I mentioned in my last post, we're having our wedding at IslandWood. I'm so excited about this for the simple reason that for everyone who can come, they will be invited to celebrate with us all weekend - from Friday night through the welcome brunch on Sunday. And even better - there are so many things to do around IslandWood that we don't even have to entertain them the whole time! They can entertain each other! We will have some things that people can choose to do on Saturday before the wedding, or they can just take off and explore on their own (or visit the rest of the island if they so choose).

IslandWood was originally built to be an educational center for grade school children to learn about environmental issues, but it has become so much more than that, including a home for classes for the Bainbridge Graduate Institute. There are four lodges where people can stay that are all located on the property. Additionally, all meals for the weekend will be eaten in the dining hall (including our wedding dinner cooked with local and sustainable ingredients by the chefs!).


This is the main hall where guests will first arrive when they come (either on Friday evening or Saturday). This is also where the cocktail hour will be prior to dinner (the doors to the ceremony site are to the left of this picture). I'd love to have the cocktail hour outside, but let's face it. We're getting married in February. It will be raining. Therefore beautiful indoor spaces are a must!

The Welcome Center is beautiful and one of the most interesting features (to me anyway) is the huge beam running across the top of the space. IslandWood is built on the site of what used to be one of the largest sawmills in the US about 100 years ago. Evidently creating these square shaped (HUGE) logs was one of this mill's trademarks (no idea if my terminology is correct, but I'll go with it). This beam was found in a mine in Montana (I think) and was returned to the site some 100 years or so later after it was first milled.

After the cocktail hour we will move to the dining hall for dinner, and then we'll move back to the Great Hall (which will have been transformed while we eat dinner) for dancing and cake and the rest of the reception. Don't worry - more pictures are coming soon!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Searching for a Venue, or How I Ended Up In Tears for the First Time (Not the Last)

Did anyone else have a long, hard search to finding that perfect venue, only to discover that it was right in front of you the whole time? Or was that just me?

See - we've known from the get-go that we wanted to get married in Seattle. Or at least I've known that (luckily Mr. Eggs was perfectly happy with that plan and said sure!).
So, we decided to start looking in Seattle.

Normally, there wouldn't be a question of geography with that statement other than "where in Seattle do we want to look," all the while assuming we were all talking about the large city located in King County, Washington. Except that normal isn't me, my life, or wedding planning. The hitch in all of this comes from the fact that I grew up, and my parents still live, on an island in the Puget Sound, west of Seattle. So therefore, when I talk about "Seattle," that generally encompasses Seattle and the Island. And again, that's normally not a bad thing until my mom and I figured out that when I said "Seattle" I actually meant the city, while when my mom heard "Seattle," she was picturing the Island or perhaps somewhere on the peninsula. Whoops. Lesson number 1 in communication learned.




Mr. Eggs Bene, my mom and I decided to take a Saturday when we were at my parents house one weekend (before we moved back to Seattle) and go look at some venues I had found through some of my internet research (aka blog stalking). We looked at some in Seattle and we looked at some on the peninsula. And, well, none of us liked any of them. Ok, that isn't quite true. I loved a lot of the pictures of places I had seen online (like Pravda Studios, the Engine Room at Georgetown Studios, and Sodo Park, among others). And I really liked them in person. The problem was that I had not prepared my mom for the urban feel of all of them. I had been reading wedding blogs and other resources online and loved so many of the pictures I had seen of urban weddings. My mom had not. And all she could think of was where people would park, and how dirty the wedding dress would be, and was that really what I wanted for my wedding?

Needless to say, we didn't stay long at any of these places (actually, we didn't have appointments at any of them, so we really just looked around the outside and peeked in where we could). But it still didn't matter. None of them had the feel that all of us wanted, and all of them would be more expensive in the long run.

After that adventure, we came home and mom and I had a long talk about what Mr. Eggs Bene and I had pictured for our wedding, as well as what my mom had in mind for her first child who was getting married. Once I got those tears out of the way, we could move forward.

One of the main problems that mom and I realized was that she wanted the rehearsal dinner and day after brunch to be on the Island. Once we figured that out, it seemed much harder to try and find a venue in Seattle that we could all be happy with (the logistics of getting back and forth seemed more daunting than we wanted to deal with - not impossible by any means, but taking up more time and money than any of us wanted to spend when we could be spending time with friends and family!)


So where could we find a space that would work for a wedding weekend (since that became our big request as we continued to look at venues - a place we could spend the whole weekend with our guests who were traveling a long way to celebrate with us)? Well, it turns out there is such a place on the Island after all... a little place called IslandWood. It turned out to be a perfect solution for everything we wanted in a venue...

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Wait, I'm Planning a Wedding Here?

So - it looks like we might be having some big changes around these parts in a bit. However, can't really talk about it yet. But soon!

Until I can talk about that however, my goal is to rededicate this space to wedding talk! Yay weddings! Ok, done with the the cheesy happy talk. But seriously, I was going back through some of my older posts, and I keep alluding to the venue (and the venue search - gah! No bueno), and now I have the dress! And I have some fun ideas for bridesmaid dresses that I want (and groomsmen clothes - but that's really B's domain...) to share with y'all. So that's what we're going to do this week, starting with our venue search! But you'll have to show up tomorrow to hear that story. I won't leave you hanging though - here's part of the area where we'll be celebrating our Island Wedding in the Woods:

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Morning Time!

What time do you get up? What about your significant other? I HATE waking up in the morning. I am not a morning person in the slightest (which is odd, because when I do wake up early, I actually really enjoy being up and can get a lot more done. But the actual ACT of getting out of bed is one of the hardest parts of the day for me). What's also really hard for me that I discovered when B and I moved in together, is that if he doesn't get up before me, it's even harder for me to get up. And right now B is not currently working, so if he wanted to, he could sleep all day. Luckily B is a morning person so he's usually up before me during the week (and ALWAYS up before me on weekends - that's actually the annoying part of being engaged to a morning person).

But what about you? Does your SO's sleeping habits affect when you can get up or not? I keep telling myself that I will be good and get up early and exercise... and then I snuggle back into my pillows, and cuddle with B and the dog (yeah, Cody gets to sleep on the bed - it's a long story and he will be the last dog I let do that, but it's really cute sometimes when he's snuggling with me. Not so much when he stretches out at 3am). Maybe tomorrow I'll get up earlier...

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Alot of Grammar Errors

I found this site through a couple of different bloggers awhile back and kept meaning to post it here as well. For those of you who know me, I am fairly picky about spelling and grammar (though I do make plenty of mistakes myself, it's just something that always jumps out at me in other people's writing).

Anyway - when people spell the two words "a lot" as one word "alot," that drives me nuts. Luckily, I now just smile whenever I see that, thanks to this.



You see, the Alot is an imaginary creature that Allie came up with to make her stop wanting to bang her head against the table whenever anyone misspelled "a lot." So whenever she sees "alot," she just imagines the creature and changes the meaning of the sentence completely and fantastically. "Alot of fire"? She pictures the above creature made out of fire. "I care about this alot"? She pictures someone giving the above creature a great big hug.


I love when people come up with this kind of stuff, as it really does make reading the interwebs a much more enjoyable experience!
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