Thursday, September 25, 2008

45 Days to the Wedding!

Yikes! It's only 45 days to the wedding. It totally snuck up on me. Earlier I was thinking that it might be getting close to 50 days before the wedding and then I discovered that the 50-day mark had come and gone. 

I would feel worried if I hadn't gotten two major wedding-related headaches out of the way today. First, our wedding reception venue required us to secure extra insurance for the event. Done, today, and my mom and dad deserve all of the credit. I cringe when I read wedding blogs where the couple refuse to let their parents be involved at all in the wedding planning. I can't imagine planning all of this without the support and input my parents have offered. 

After the insurance was in order my dad and I set out to secure the many requirements necessary to procure a limited special occasion permit with the North Carolina Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission. Yeah. It was hoot. There was the trip to the courthouse, where I had to purchase a copy of my criminal record check, a trip to the bank to have my signature get the idea. Not fun, but it's done! 

Now we can move on and get down to the really difficult wedding planning tasks, like waiting for the bridesmaids' gifts to arrive in the mail and choosing the red wine that we'll serve at the reception (legally, thanks to the limited special occasion permit). I think we'd better try many, many different bottles. Anyone have any favorite budget red wines? Right now I like Hacienda.

While we were working on the red tape, Chris was vacationing with his family. On Monday I made apple pies with some fresh apples that were grown right next door to his parents' house. They brought them to us when they came to town for the bridal shower, and I sent a pie back with Chris. Delicious! I had all intentions of making my own pie crust so I could try out my new marble rolling pin that I received as a shower gift. I had to let go of that idea so I wouldn't spend the whole day making pies, but I did use the rolling pin to stretch the store-bought crust over the apple filling. That counts, right?  

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Beaupty Parlor

As the wedding date gets closer I have had to face the ugly truth: I know nothing about makeup. I've been working on a makeup strategy for the wedding day and it's been difficult because I never wear makeup. Occasionally over the years I made the resolution to invest more time and effort in my appearance and not just go out of the house looking like I did when I rolled out of bed. The result of the resolution is always the same: I wear mascara or lipstick for about three days, then I go back to leaving the house looking pretty much like I did when I rolled out of bed. When I met the future husband I happened to be wearing mascara that night and it was a real thorn in my side because then I had to wear mascara for the next few dates. 

I'm not sure when this happened because when I was younger I was very interested in makeup. My skill at creating beauty was evident at a very young age, as the founder, owner, and operator of a front porch beauty, oh excuse me, beaupty parlor. 

In third grade I wore blue eye shadow to school every day. Too bad the old makeup tricks from my younger days just aren't working for me now. 

So I've done a few trial runs with makeup for the wedding and it's working out okay so far. I found the most amazing mascara with the help of this beauty blog. My sister Kate was in town and helped me try out some looks. She prefers a dramatic eye. Here she is practicing her technique on one of our neighbors when we were kids. 

I was really worried about wearing makeup to the wedding until we met with our photographer. She dispelled the rumor that it's necessary to wear lots of makeup for photographs, and even said that she recommended a very natural look. It was just what I wanted to hear. I want to wear the kind of makeup that looks like you're wearing no makeup at all but you look your best. Makeup that makes you look like you just walked out of yoga class. If anyone knows where to buy this I'd love to hear about it. In the meantime the trials will continue, but with less fervency, and much, much better mascara. 

Thursday, September 18, 2008


My bridal luncheon was last Saturday. It was amazing--the food! the drinks! the gifts! the games! The photo above was the toilet-paper bridal gown game. The team that dressed Olivia, my friend Judy's daughter, won of course. I tried to get my niece Rylee to be a toilet-paper bride contestant but she was having none of it. "You be the big bride," she said. 

The luncheon was hosted by my sister Kate, my friend Lori, and my soon-to-be sister-in-law Ashley. They totally spoiled me. The food they made was so good. Food is always my favorite part of any event, but this was an exceptional spread. We had tomato pie, deviled eggs, hot pimiento cheese, BLT dip, buffalo chicken dip, chicken salad sandwiches, ham biscuits, coconut cupcakes, and a mimosa punch. There was a reporter at the newspaper where I used to work who would list every single item on the buffet at any event she was covering, and no, this wasn't in the food section of the newspaper. I totally feel like I'm being her now, but seriously, the food was awesome. You can read more about the shower on Lori's blog. She did a much better job than I of taking pictures that day.  

Ashley coordinated the games, which were the most fun. One was like the newlywed game, where she had asked Chris questions prior to the shower and then asked me the same questions. I thought I would do great at the game, but I just did okay. I knew Chris's favorite food (beans) and his favorite style of beer (IPA). I didn't know that his favorite color is gray--but that explains a lot about the disagreements we've been getting into over our registry. I didn't know his shoe size, but he didn't know mine either. When asked what habit of his I found most annoying I guessed, "he's very, very neat." But he'd answered that he is always on time. Oh, well. My future husband is so "annoying." 

Later that night (in front of god and my future in-laws and everyone) Chris said that one question Ashley had asked was what was the most romantic thing Chris has ever done for me. They wanted me to guess his answer. I thought of the few times that he has brought me something special to eat for lunch at work and how much I liked it. I guess I was trying to think of something bigger, something that would please everyone to hear, something involving flowers, but I couldn't. It turned out that surprising me with lunch at work was what Chris had answered too. I guess that's as romantic as we get. Ashley threw the question out, no way was she going to ask that in front of a roomful of gals all gathered to celebrate our union. The way Chris and I are together is much harder to fit into a newlywed game question. We're the best of friends, and we support each other and have lots of fun together and all that is very romantic; it's not a big, grand gesture but lots of little ones that all add up to being very happy. Except when we're arguing over all of the gray stuff that Chris wants to put on our registry. 

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Day after Labor Day

Ahhhh, September. Chris and I celebrated the end of the summertime tourist season by taking a dip in the ocean and then taking a long bike ride, now that we are much less likely to be run off the road by a tourist looking for the Dairy Queen. 

The wedding is just over two months away and we are making great progress, people. The wedding invitations are being printed. I'm hard at work on addressing the invitations in calligraphy (5 down, 95 to go). We chose a cottage to rent for the honeymoon in Ocracoke. I hope it works out, because I must have looked at every cottage on this website twice already. My sister Kate came to visit this weekend and she did a cupcake run--chocolate--and they were awesome.

We now have all of the fabric for the table runners cut, several are pinned, and some are already sewn. My mom and Kate got them started, but Chris did the most measuring and cutting. He took this picture of me cutting the fabric for the last tablecloth, but it's misleading because seriously this is the only one I cut. I did do some ironing, however. 

A few major and minor wedding-related hissy fits out of the way, a couple of freelance articles and photos sent off to the editor, and I feel just like Bahgheerah did this afternoon: