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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Guest Book--Or Not?

I don't particularly like the idea of a guest book. First of all; they never, never, NEVER get filled out entirely. This leaves 20+ pages of blank entries. Secondly, I don't know of anybody who actually has their wedding guest book out in plain sight. Does anybody even look through their guest book after the wedding? How about a year after the wedding? Three years?

My guess is that the number dwindles after the first anniversary. With that in mind, I've been looking up some alternatives. I know for sure that I want to do a recipe/address card option at the bridal shower. And I've seen one idea for the reception itself that I really like. So, I guess I'll start showing you them.

Tutorial here.

This is the "wish tree" idea. I personally think this particular idea is a little "busy", but I can definitely get behind the general idea. This would be particularly fun if we could somehow make a full cherry blossom tree. I might have to send out the minions to look for cheap fake trees for sale, or yard sales, or Craigslist. This is also a great idea because it's super versatile! You can have guests write up advice, just a general note, addresses, etc. I'd assume, just from the ideas in my head, that it wouldn't be too expensive to make; but would look very impressive. (This will also give guests time to mill around while they wait for the bride and groom to roll in.) I think this will work well for us. Remember that we said we wanted our guests to move around the room reading all of the little trivia cards we have out? Well, not they'll be forced to be up and mobile instead of sitting around eating cheese. 

General Google Stock Photo--no link

Purchase here.

These are examples of another option I liked. The signature mat. However, I'm not sure I'm a huge fan of having ALL of our guests sign one photo. I think we might try to limit out bridal party and direct family members for the signing of this. After all, they know us the most and they are the ones we've chosen to be especially close to us for our wedding day. It'll allow our family members to write more, and we'll have a very special piece to remember the day by. 

That's pretty much it for today. Any other ideas for eliminating the guest book are welcome!!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Busy Busy, Business Cards to Show

We've been SUPER busy the last few weeks. I haven't even have time to think about writing in the blog, let alone research. (This fact may or may not be making me nervous for the actual wedding planning. Which will be going on during school--the year I'm trying to graduate. Yikes!) Anyway, as nerve wracking as it may be, I'm so grateful that Tony and I can talk about things so easily because that meant that he was totally okay with me planning ahead of time. And I am extra extra grateful about the extra planning time.

First things first. I know that nobody is *really* reading this blog. BUT, we made a purchase today! I'm not sure if I should show all my cards and reveal what it is quite yet. So, I think I'll keep mum on the subject for now. Just know that we did something today that I am over the moon excited about. 

When I posted last I mentioned that I had looked at a few things on VistaPrint, so I'll show you the business cards I liked tonight.

I liked both of these for the "camera" theme. Remember when I said we would set up a photo-sharing site for our guests to upload and share pictures? Well, I figured we'd likely need a business card specifically for that. We can get a bunch (VistaPrint always has a TON of really awesome deals!) and we can use them for ANY wedding-related get-together we have. Even if it's just a craft get together, or a planning party. I particularly like that we can add three of our own photo's to the card. We can have two of us on either side, and then use the center photo space for something wedding theme related; like a cherry blossom. Maybe I can get Tony to draw one up for me. 

One thing I just thought about is our engagement announcement. I'd like to get it on tape, or camera; but I don't know how to do that without cluing somebody in. (And that somebody preferably having decent camera skills.) Guess we'll have to have a designated shutter-bug. Wonder if we could use a friend and just tell them (our extended families) they are working on a project about families. Hmmm, I know a few people who would be up for some mischief. That also being said; since we only want to pay for one year of photo-sharing service, I'll have to make a card with my e-mail address on them to hand out to everybody, and maybe bring my laptop so that some people can upload right then and there. I don't know. We'll see. 

*Edit Note*: I had a few more cards here, but I was attempting to save time when I took the pictures from VistaPrint's website and I clipped multiple cards in one picture, which made for god-awful formatting. So, I took of those clips and kept the singular cards I had saved. Those are the ones I mostly wanted to talk about anyway. So: on to more cards!

 More cherry blossom cards to the top and bottom. I'm not sure I like the all pink one; the flowers are especially cute, but I don't think all of the pink really goes well with the theme.

 I really like the one above; it's the right hint of subtle, sophisticated and beautiful that I'd like to use. The one below it is also beautiful, but almost *too* real for our theme.

 So there are the business cards I looked at. Now I'll just need to brainstorm to think of a way to use them. I am thinking we might be able to find a way to use them in the invitations. I'm not quite sure how, just yet. But the thought is at the tip of my tongue, so I'm sure it'll come to me!

That's it for tonight. I'll be back soon enough to share more goodies with you.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

What I've Been Up To

Just going to write a quick entry tonight (well, I'll try. You know how I am)

Things have been going well. We are coming up on the end of our summer classes and getting ready to head into our fall classes; so a lot of my time as been going towards making everything is as it should be. AND, also making sure I'll actually be able to graduate on time and not have to drag it out another year. (It would really only be an extra semester, but I wouldn't be able to "walk"/graduate until May 2013, a full year after I should, even though I'd have my diploma.)

That being said, I haven't been doing a whole lot of research lately, although tonight I did look at VistaPrint to get an idea of design and cost for some business cards for the photography angle. Also looked at pricing and design for our address stamps. I'm not writing them all out, and it would be nice to have a stamp instead of labels because it would be a long time use kind of thing. The only problem with that would be: what last name to put on the stamp? I"ll obviously be changing my name, so we wouldn't use it if I had my last name on it. If the price is right, though, it'll be worth it either way.

SO! The exciting part of this post. I talked to Tony about the ring I showed you guys a few posts back. The one I LOVE. He agreed that it would be alright if I chipped in some of my own money to buy it, since I was the one who picked a ring that was so over budget. We (and by that, I mean I) are currently negotiating with the seller in the hopes that he will let the ring go for a price closer to our budget. I've got a set number I am aiming for, and the seller is hoping to get a number slightly higher than that. I've made a few points that I hope will make him reconsider. But, truthfully, this is in it's very infancy, so it could go either way. Yes, I'll be disappointed if we get get him to lower the price, but at the same time, I already feel a little guilty that we would be potentially spending so much money on a ring. Especially since I spent so much time and effort protesting a diamond, or even just an expensive ring in general, for that matter. Yes, I love the ring, but I can definitely let it go if I have to. I know that there will be another ring down the line that I like just as much, or even more. So, I'll try to keep you updated on the negotiation. The current listing on the ring should be done by now, and I've requested that he re-list the ring as "Best Offer" so that we can officially negotiate on the price. Once he does the re-listing, we should be able to get the ball rolling. I'm hoping to have an answer by the end of next week.

This of course is just another way that Tony and I are completely nontraditional. However, I still want him to officially propose, and I know it means a lot to him for him to do it. HOWEVER!!! IF we get this ring, it's going to get shipped to the house. I'm going to DIE not being allowed to open it, or try it on, or WEAR it. AHH. No, seriously. It's going to be SO rough to know that it's right there in the box and that I can't have it. :-( I certainly hope he doesn't plan to torture me with that by waiting a long time to propose. I'd like to believe that I can just push it out of my mind and forget it's even there; but that's a LIE. Maybe we'll have it shipped to my parent's house, or his sister's house so that I won't be tempted to play dress up while he's gone. Plus, it would definitely surprise me when he does propose because I wouldn't know when he picked it up. His sister's is probably the best bet because it is the closest to his work, so he could stop after work and there wouldn't be a time change in his getting home that would make me suspicious. Good plan.

Well, that's all for now. :-)

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

I'm Back!

We are back from vacation--though it was pretty stressful, so I don't know if you can really call it "vacation". Either way; we're home, and I am REALLY glad.

Last night I had a weird-o dream about Tony proposing. I'm going to type it here (since nobody really reads this as far as I know).

I can only assume that this was taking place in Pittsburgh. It started out with both of us commuting together to get to work or school (or something). We took a train or a bus or something similar, and we ended up being late for our transfer and had to catch a cab. (These were really awesome cabs, by the way. They were actually a lot like zip cars) You were the driver, and when you got to where you needed to go, you just left it there. They had trackers on them to let the owners know where they were.) Some woman along the street let Tony and I jump ahead of her to get the cab; I remember thinking how nice it was of her to let us do that.

We finally got (almost) to where we were going, and decided to window shop while we were waiting (I'm not sure what we were waiting for; I think Tony was actually dream-stalling for time). We found a jewelry shop that I wanted to stop into, but for some reason the woman was closing up. (Don't ask me why. I specifically remember looking at my watch and it being 7:38am.) I was really peeved, and we had a back and forth with each other. I held my left hand up to the window to tell her that I wanted to look at engagement rings/wedding bands. She and I basically had a silent argument and she finally let us in, but was really snippy.  (side note: it's weird that engagement rings are called "rings" but your wedding ring is called a "band". The wedding part is interchangeable; I've heard both ring and band used, but never "engagement band".)

When we got in there, I immediately noticed that she had a small money loose in the shop. I started harping on her about how those moneys were illegal and I was going to report her. She very snidely replied that she knew that they were illegal and she pays a daily fine of a little over $200.--It may have just been a fee for having one, and not a fine. I don't remember. (I don't remember the exact number, but she did give me one). She was also rude and told us that there wouldn't be anything in the shop in our "price budget", without us even telling her what our budget was. So, I was pissed that she automatically assumed we were poor and started looking around anyway.

At this point in the dream it starts getting fuzzy for me to remember; but I know Tony wasn't there anymore. He probably told me he was leaving to go do something; I don't know. Suddenly there is a man there shopping as well, and another man who was a salesperson. (Reminded me a lot of Randy from Say Yes to the Dress). The shopping man had a very specific ring he wanted to look at: The ring I fell in love with on Ebay!! The one I posted a week or so ago! So, of course, I'm very interested and also mad that this guy wanted to look at it. I mean, if he walks into a ring shop and knows exactly what he wants to look at, it's very probable that he will want to buy this ring. So, they show him the ring and I follow them outside for them to look at it. I asked him very politely if I could look at it as well, and I know I definitely mentioned that I couldn't afford it, so he didn't have to worry about me trying to buy it from under him. He, also very nicely, allowed me to look/try on the ring.

Things in dream-land are nothing like they are in the real world, and this ring was HIDEOUS. It looked absolutely nothing like that real ring. It was marquise shaped in the center, but then it had big crystal looking stones coming straight up from different places, like little towers. Some were different colors (I specifically remember purple) and none of them were the same size. It looked ridiculous, but since I had professed such a love for it before I actually saw it; I put it on anyway, and it didn't really fit. I remember mentioning that I didn't like how it was symmetrical. This is where the dream got REALLY weird! The salesman then tells me that the ring had once been in his ass. (I know, I told you it was WEIRD) He even went as far as to show me a flaw on the band and told me it was a "stain"..he was slightly more graphic, but I'm sure you can imagine what the stain was. Thankfully, that's where the truly weird stuff ended.

Another small fuzzy section, because the next thing I remember, the original salesperson/owner lady is beside me and she is showing me wedding dresses. She is wearing this old-timey dress that is gorgeous, but looks like it's made of felt or wool. The dress is all one color, but the underside is yellow. I remember telling her I really liked it, but asked if I could get the underside in a different color. (She said yes, by the way). I also remember her putting one on and lacing it up. She told me that she didn't think she had many/any dresses in my size because they didn't sell them that large. (This old lady was really getting her jabs in on me in that dream, let me tell you.) I remember thinking that was bullshit because I had read a sign outside saying they carried them up to a size 28 or something like that. Anyway, I can only assume that she found a dress my size, because I'm positive that I was wearing one, but I don't know what it looked like.

She takes me outside, puts her arm in mine (she was on my left side), and starts walking me up the street. She's talking about something or other that involves dresses; probably about needing to walk in them, or something. I'm paying attention to her, looking to my left, when all of a sudden Tony shows up to my right and takes my arm in his. He's all dressed up, too, in an outfit that also looks old-timey and felt or wool-like. The woman lets go and pretty much disappears. Tony and I continue walking up the street, and I pretty much know exactly what is coming, so I'm very excited and likely tearing up. He takes me to what looks like an outdoor amphitheater for small bands or shows. It's not very large, like a concert stage or anything like that. He kneels down on one knee and proposes. As he's putting the ring on, he is putting it on my right hand, so I whisper to him, "wrong hand", and he gets a tiny bit flustered and corrects himself. So, on goes the ring on my left hand. (In case you're wondering, I know for sure it wasn't the hideous ring from the shop, but I also can't tell you what it looked like. Dreams are weird. Though it's possible that I don't know what the dress and ring looked like because I haven't found a dress or ring in real life). For some reason, I think we proposed and got married all at the same time; we were both really dressed up, and I remember having a band and an engagement ring on.)

At this point, it's all over, so he picks me up and I remember my dress flying up so everybody got a good look at my ass. I also remember not caring! I was very very very excited. Grinning that grin that makes you look crazy and a little ugly because you're showing all your teeth and a little gum, too. But, I couldn't help myself.

That's pretty much the end of the dream, but I do remember going back and talking to the shop owners and the lady said she was difficult and mean as a means to stall me, or something like that. That part is a little fuzzy for me. I do remember asking Tony a bunch of times, "How did you plan this!?", and he, like a true magician, wouldn't tell me.

Needless to say, that was one of the better bizarre dreams I've had. It was very romantic, and it was such a blast!

On a real-life update: because that ring reared it's (ugly) head in my dream, I decided to check it out on Ebay to see if it had sold; it hasn't. There were one or two bids on it, but it only got up to $300 or so. The seller has re-listed it and started the bidding at $300 instead of $100. So, I can only assume that he's frustrated that it hasn't gained a bidding frenzy. I will probably keep an eye on it, because I'm really interested to see what it sells for, if it ever sells!