Saturday, October 23, 2010


This is it.  The day I've been waiting for for 10 long months.  It feels like it's been ages.  It also feels like just yesterday we were basking in the glow of a brand-new engagement.  I cannot believe it's actually here.

I cannot believe I'm up at 5:30am.  Unable and/or unwilling to continue to sleep.  My mind is racing, my heart is pounding, and I am just a big ball of jitters. 

It's supposed to be a gorgeous fall day here in Central PA.  Sunny and 70 degrees.  Almost unheard of for this late in October.  A full moon.  The leaves are at their peak of change.  Absolutely beautiful.  My favorite kind of fall day.

I looked around last night at the rehearsal dinner and realized that I am one lucky lady.  I have a fiance (husband in 11 short hours!) who loves me.  I have friends who would do anything and are so happy to see this happening for me.  I have family who are...well, they're just the best people on the planet.  I'm marrying into a family and set of friends who are absolutely wonderful.  Matt and I have been supported and rallied around in ways that I never would have expected. 

I can't wait.  I'm so ready to do this. 

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Officially Stressed

Ok.  I'm there now.  The Stress Zone.  Little things are built up in my head to be big things.  Sleep is a distant memory.  And here's a funny one: I usually under-eat when I'm stressed, but it seems that wedding stress is causing me to put anything I can find in my mouth (mind out of the gutter, you!).  So when I got on the scale this morning and had GAINED weight, I lost it.  I cried the whole way to the gym, and then proceeded to run for 25 minutes straight - a personal record.  [Yes, I am completely aware at how pathetic 25 minutes is to many of you, but for me, that's freaking awesome.  Remember?  Exercise is against my religion.]  That was kind of cathartic, though.  I plan to do it again tomorrow, hopefully Thursday I'll be able to squeeze something in (not likely, but hopefully), and I plan to bring some workout clothes home in case I'm really not sleeping and think a run would help ease the tension.

My phone rings and my heart starts to beat furiously.  What went wrong?  Who's not coming?  Which vendor isn't showing up?  Why can't people leave me alone?! 

I am off work starting Thursday.  Here is what Thursday looks like for me:  I have to get up early to drive Matt to work so that I'll have the car (I sold mine 2 years ago to save money).  Then I have to drive back home (Matt works 45 minutes from home), pick up the pretzels and TastyCakes for the OOTs, finish packing, double-and-triple check the packing, set timers for the lights in the house, complete/print the day-of timelines, complete/print the contact lists, go pick Matt up at work, drive to Hershey, drop off stuff at my mom's, go for final fitting, pick up my boudoir album from Megan, go back home, enjoy dinner/socializing with various members of the family, put together the OOTs, wrap the bridesmaids gifts, and wrap Matt's gift.

Friday: Get up at 7:30, eat breakfast, drive out to Camp Hill (45 minutes) to drop my Grandma's ring off at JDK because like a dummy I forgot to give it to David at our last meeting, drive back to Hershey, drop off the OOTs at the hotel, go home, eat, go to the Spa, relax and get pampered for 3 hours (ahhhh....), go home, shower and get ready for rehearsal dinner, rehearse, eat, shmooze with our friends/family who join us for drinks, get to bed at a somewhat-normal hour and try to sleep!

Yup...busy couple of days.  I am running a constant loop in my head of timelines, project deadlines, errands to run, people to see, food to eat (and not eat), and packing lists.  You know how on DVR you can press the "skip" button and jump ahead a few minutes in whatever program you're watching?  I want to do that.  I want to just skip straight to Saturday at 4:30pm. 

Not to mention that work is crazy right now, and I have a feeling that I am going to leave my floor looking like a total nightmare for whoever is going to have to cover for me the next 2 1/2 weeks.  I don't like that feeling.  I usually try to clean up all the loose ends before I go away on vacation, but things have been absolutely nightmarish with a bazillion placements and difficult cases and nasty families, and I hate the idea of dumping all of that on whatever poor soul will have to deal with it for me.

Monday, October 18, 2010

I Love Wedding Planning, But...

Some of this is starting to get a little long in the tooth. 

The inappropriate questions:
"So...when are you going to start having kids?"  Or "Do you think you're going to get pregnant on the honeymoon?"  Or "Did you get special lingerie for the wedding night?"  Why.  Why is that any of your business?  My stock answer from now on when people ask about when we're planning to have kids is, "Whenever you, and everyone else, stop asking me."  What is it about planning a wedding that suddenly makes it acceptable to discuss someone's sex life?  Or family planning?  I find it so unbelievably creepy.  And rude.  So if this is you....stop it.  You're pissing me off.

The stupid questions:
"Are you excited?"  No.  I am completely ambivalent about marrying the man with whom I am completely head over heels in love.  I could not care less.  I mean, c'mon, what kind of question is that?  Do I really need to answer?  Do you really need me to jump up and down?  Of course I'm excited.  But I am a human being, and I have other emotions, and other things going on in my life that may also be effecting my mood at the moment.  I am not a wedding machine.  Just know that I am thrilled.  And stop asking.  Dummy.

Equally as stupid:
"Are you ready?"  Nope.  10 months have gone by and I haven't done a damn thing.  None of this wedding is planned.  It's going to be one big chaotic nightmare.  Hello?!  Do you know me at all?  I was born ready for this day.  I am organized, prepared for [almost] anything, and ready to marry the love of my life.  Am I ready...psh!

The "I'm-going-to-smack-you-in-the-face" statements:
"Dude, I'm gonna get so hammered at your wedding!"  Or "You thought I was bad at so-and-so's wedding?  That's nothing compared to yours!"  Seriously.  I wish that I had the right, as the bride, to kick people out who get obnoxiously drunk and make Matt and I look like assholes because they can't control themselves (family or not).  You are not 21.  It is no longer "funny" to get wasted and drop your pants and hump the cake table.  And it is especially not funny to "warn" me about it.  Don't be stupid.  Don't piss off the bride.  It won't be pretty. 

The "What-are-you-gonna-do-about-it" questions:
"So, what all do you have left to do?"  Why?  Are you gonna help me with it?  No.  You're not.  Go away.

The "I-shouldn't-be-annoyed-but-I-am" questions:
"What does your dress look like?"  I don't know why this bothers me.  Maybe because I like having that as my little secret.  It's my wedding dress, you know?  If you're invited to the wedding, you'll see it then.  If you're not, I'm sure you'll see pictures.  I want to keep this one close to the chest, though.  Maybe it's because I'm not really sure how to describe my dress.  It's not a typical "bridal" gown.  I really have a hard time describing it that doesn't make it sound weird.  So I'd rather not try.  Cool?  What also annoys me?  When I tell you you have to wait until the wedding day to see my dress, and for the next 9 months I hear, "Well, since you won't tell me about your dress..."  Like I'm breaking some sort of law by not telling you.  It's my choice and my right.  Don't try to make me feel guilty about it. 

Honestly, though, this makes me sound totally miserable.  But really, I have loved, loved, loved planning our wedding.  I've had so much fun.  I've really enjoyed seeing how involved Matt has gotten.  I've had a great time making plans with my mom.  Sharing things with my girls.  Dance lessons with my dad.  Meeting with our amazing vendors.  Putting together a vision in my head that will hopefully translate well to the real world.  But I'm ready to stop getting all these stupid questions/statements.  I'm ready for the day to be here.  I want it to be 8am on the morning of Saturday 10/23, and I'm waking up on the morning of my wedding.  I'm ready.  I need the next 5 days to hurry up!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Today's the Day

Today's the day, you guys.  The day I've been waiting for, so patiently, for 9 months. 

Today is the day our wedding date appears on the 10-day forecast!

So far, so good.  The weather for Saturday, October 23, 2010, as of 5 minutes ago, is 57 and Sunny.  An absolutely perfect fall day.

I hope you know,, I'll be obsessively checking you for the next 10 days.  So it would be nice if you could keep the forecast just about the same. 

That is all.  Thank you.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Making a Statement...Subtly

There are a lot of causes that I support.  The Multiple Sclerosis Society, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and Shriners Hospitals for Children are my top 3.  I donate money to each of them through a paycheck deduction with every paycheck.  I donate used clothing and home goods to the Purple Heart Foundation a few times a year, as well.  I also donate to random causes throughout that year that catch my attention. 

One of those random causes recently has been White Knot for Equality in support of marriage equality.  I have gay and lesbian friends who don't get to get married.  Even though they are in longterm, committed, loving relationships.  This saddens me.  So I support White Knot for Equality.  I support the Ban on Prop 8.  When it was overturned by the courts in California, I was elated.  I might have cried.

I wanted to find some way to tie (ha!) this into our wedding.  I asked Matt about having a bowl of the white knot pins sitting on the table with our escort cards for people take one if they choose.  Matt was kind of...concerned.  And honestly, I'm not surprised.  This subject is a touchy one.  I've gotten into debates about it already with people (once at our Super Bowl party, nonetheless).  Matt doesn't want to bring politics into our wedding day or increase the risk of some sort of awkward stand-off between guests.  He doesn't want someone to feel cornered when they're approached and asked, "Why aren't you wearing a knot?"  And I totally see his point. 

But it's still important enough to me that I want to recognize and stand in some solidarity with my friends.  So I will be pinning a small white knot somewhere on my dress.

I haven't decided where yet.  I am also going to tie the OOTs shut with a white knot.  I'll know what it means, but probably 90% of our guests will just think the bag was tied shut to make it easier to transport.  If someone asks me about it, I will proudly tell them.  But I'm not going to force it down their throats.  I think it's a way to acknowledge the cause without forcing it into people's consciousness for the day.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Dance Lessons

My dad and I finally chose a song for our father-daughter dance!  Well, actually, my dad was being indecisive and I was so in love with this song, he agreed to use it.  So what did we choose?

"Father and Daughter," by Paul Simon.  The lyrics of this song choke me up every time I hear it.  It's so sweet, and it really did make me think of my dad the first time I heard it. sweet is this?
I'm gonna watch you shine / Gonna watch you grow / Gonna paint a sing / So you'll always know / As long as one and one is two / There could never be a father who loved his daughter more than I love you
The best part?  There's also the voice of a child that sings backup vocals now and then.  ACK!  My heart!  Its strings are being tugged!

Anyway.  We decided on this song, but then realized we had no idea how to dance to it.  It's not a simple "sway" song like some of the slower ones out there.  It's got a pretty distinct rhythm.  So, we did what any clueless father-daughter team does.  We signed up for a dance class!

I signed us up for a 50-minute class at PA DanceSport near Hershey.  Our lesson was with John, who turned out to be a great teacher.  Luckily, I had 12 years of dance experience behind me, and my dad had taken a lesson with my sister 2 years ago when she got married.  So we weren't total newbies.  John explained to us that the song had the perfect rhythm for a Rhumba. 

The basic step for the Rhumba is the "slow, quick-quick, slow, quick-quick..."  This can be done in a simple box or turning.  John started off by teaching us the simple box, and then taught us how to turn it.  Once we mastered that, he showed us how to spin me.  It's a bit complicated, but we eventually got it [mostly] down.  We put that together with the box and the turn.  Then, John taught us a couple of other "fancy" moves - the "open" and the "rock."  The rock is basically where you step from side to side for the "quick-quick" part, and the open is where you go from side to side, opening your body up to the middle of the dance floor.  Hard to explain, but it's nifty.  We got those [mostly] down, too.  John started to try to teach us a couple of other fancy moves, but I killed it.  I didn't want us to be totally overwhelmed and end up confusing ourselves out on the dance floor. 

All in all, the lesson went really well.  My dad did a great job - I was really proud of him!  John kept telling him he should come and take additional lessons, or just come to the group dances.  He picked it up really quickly.  John also kept telling us that we were adorable.  Awww...  We had a great time, and I'm really really glad we took the lesson.  I think we'll surprise everyone!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Why Getting Married is Awesome

Aside from, you know, marrying the person you love and having a big day to celebrate with all of your closest friends and relatives and getting a bunch of presents and taking a honeymoon and all that jazz.

Dude!  You get a letter from the President!  And the First Lady.

Ok, well, not automatically.  First, you have to invite them.  Yup, that's right - send one of your wedding invitations to the White House, and you get a letter back from them!  Signed and everything!* 

I saw this a couple of times in the various wedding boards.  Project Wedding provides the address for the President, Mickey Mouse, and the Pope.  Another website suggested sending one to your favorite celebrity, too.  We only sent one to President Obama.  We sent it out with all of our "regular" invitations, back in mid-August.  We just received this yesterday:


How freakin cool is that?!?  I heart wedding planning.

*It's a pre-printed signature.  I did the smudge test.  But still...too cool.  But, our address, on the front - definitely hand-written.  It was all rain-drop smudged.  I am telling myself Michelle did it.

*All personal photos.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Cakes I Wish I'd Seen First...

O. M. G.  I follow Cake Wrecks blog because it's hysterical and snarky and the cakes are just so pathetic.  It features pictures of professional cakes that have gone "horribly hilariously wrong."  You can't help but love it.  But every Sunday they do Sunday Sweets, which actually features really amazing cakes.  This weeks Sunday Sweets?  Peacock cakes!!  I so wish I'd seen these before we designed our cake.  These are just incredible.  Check them out:

Holy hand-painted-ness!

I love these feathers

And the gold and ivory on this is so pretty and simple

I love how abstract and geometrical this looks

Ack!  Mosaic!  I die.
And these feathers?  Awesome.

Seriously, you guys.  Those cakes are amazing.  I heart them.  And I'm a little bit jealous of the brides who had them at their wedding.

*All photos from Cake Wrecks.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Guest List

It's October 2.  3 weeks until our wedding.  1 day after our RSVP deadline.  43% of our guests have not RSVP'd.  That's annoying, you guys. 

I know that many other brides have lamented this in the past, but... Seriously!  How hard is it?  Write your name on a card, check the little line that says you're coming or you're not, and pick a meal.  Slide said card into the self-addressed stamped envelope and drop it in the mail!  Come on!  It's so rude to assume that if you're not coming you don't need to send in the reply.  Um, last time I checked, I am not a mind-reader.  So while you may assume that's appropriate behavior, I am not assuming you're not coming.  Instead, I am panicking about what I'm going to do if you do show up.  

I wish it was more acceptable to hire a bouncer to stand outside the reception with a guest list.  If you're not on the list, you don't come in.  That's it.  If you can't be bothered to do something as simple as mail in a card, then I can't be bothered to worry about feeding you on my parents' dime.  Unfortunately, bouncers are "frowned-upon" in the wedding world.  Which I totally get.  You usually see bouncers on shows like Bridezillas where there is some crazy family feud or something.  Or on Platinum Weddings where there are some VIPs expected to attend and security is a concern.  Our wedding is neither of those things.  And I am not about to be labeled a Bridezilla.  I think I've been pretty laid back and low-key through this whole process.  But this is really getting my panties in a wad.

Granted my parents have been out of town this week, so there are likely some additional response cards waiting for them in their mail, which they'll get to tomorrow.  But I highly doubt that all 74 of our so-far-unreceived responses are in there.  And it's annoying.  But, it is what it is.  We'll start making phone calls and sending emails and facebook messages to people to make sure we get their responses.  And if they never answer?  Well, then hopefully they won't be surprised when they show up and have no where to sit and have to go out to dinner instead of eating the amazing food that JDK is cooking up for us.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Must-Play List

Despite having an uber-talented DJ who I'm confident will do an awesome job with our wedding music, I definitely wanted to make sure we provided a list of songs that he absolutely has to play at some point throughout the evening.  Here are the top songs on our must-play list, and why they have to heard!

"Yeah," by Usher.  The summer after I finished grad school, I took off for a month-long trek through Europe.  It was something I'd dreamed of doing for years, and I figured that summer was the time to do it.  I spent a week by myself, and then my sister met up with me in Paris.  Together we travelled around France, Italy, and Spain.  On our second-to-last night (after a harrowing stay in Barcelona during which my passport and credit cards were stolen), we went out to the clubs in Madrid with pretty much everyone in our hostel.  We got to one club and all they played was this thumping techno music by Spanish artists.  We didn't know any of it and weren't having fun, and we were just about ready to walk out.  Then, suddenly, they played this song, and our entire group went NUTS.  It was, hands-down, one of the most fun nights of my life.  Every time I hear it I think of that night and my sister.  [Funny story: once the club realized they'd pleased the Americans, they started playing ridiculous "American" songs, like "Cotton Eyed Joe" and the Grease Medley - it was hilarious]

"Oh, What a Night," by the Four Seasons.  In high school, my girlfriends and I used to go to this dance club every now and then.  Every Friday night, they had high school night, so it's not like we were sneaking in.  But because it was a) in Lancaster, and therefore 45 minutes away, b) in a "bad" part of the city [not really but by our sheltered standars, it was quite dangerous!], and c) a place where we met boys not from Hershey and therefore not approved by our parents...we felt like major bad-asses going to this place.  We learned this line dance to this song and it's been in our repertoire ever since.  Every time one of us gets married, this is a must play, and we take over the dance floor.  That tradition is certainly not ending with my wedding!!

"You Should Be Dancing" or "Stayin Alive," by the Bee Gees.  Matt's brother is a huge fan of disco, the Bee Gees, and this movie.  Every time it gets played at a wedding, he takes over the dance floor and recreates the scene in the movie.  It's hilarious.  Everyone stands around and watches him, and he eats it up.

"Don't Stop Believing," by Journey or the Glee Cast.  Uhhh...hello?  Who doesn't love to belt this one at the top of their lungs?  My preference would be for the Glee version, but that's cuz I'm a huge Gleek.  I realize that it'll probably be the Journey version, but I'm totally ok with that.  I just need to be able to scream it into my beer bottle.

"Werewolves in London," by Warren Zevon.  It's hard to explain this one.  There's a long-standing myth in Matt's family, and this song is at the center of the controversy.  It's an absolute must-play, just for the laughs alone.

So that's it!  A few of the most important must-plays on our list.  I can't wait to party with our guests to all these songs!