Monday, December 29, 2008


I mean, just look at us. We're jumping for joy.

Edited to add: so our photographer posted some of our engagement photos on her blog. I am pleased.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

another marathon begins

Much like the Mister and I had a Thanksgiving Marathon, we're now on day two of our Christmas marathon. Luckily it's a bit more spread out (we have a week down here rather than four days) but still. Thus far: engagement photos and florist meeting; cookie-baking at the future in-law's place, lunch with mom and step-sister. Still to come: meeting with the invitations lady; drinks with a college friend, the Mister's family's neighborhood Christmas party, Christmas with my mom's side, my dad's side, and the Mister's family. It's daunting to say the least. However, as I am done with finals and very nearly done with law school altogether, I am pleased as punch.

The engagement photos went okay, I think. As I've mentioned before, we're not the most photogenic couple of all time. We brought along our precious mutt, and she was on her absolute worst behavior. I mean, seriously, she's often obnoxious, but this was a new low. She fears water, so at least I've never had to worry about her being wet. After a few attempts at getting her in shots, I gave up and was going to tie her to a tree. This involved me letting go of her for a second, and as soon as I did, she jumped in the lake after some ducks. An ice-covered lake. In December. Can't get her to get in Lake Michigan with the other dogs on the dog beach in Chicago, but she'll jump in a below-zero body of water six months later. What a dumbass. So anyway, she spent most of the shoot curled up in the warm car in some towels we luckily brought along. After that, I think it went a little better. We'll see when I get the proofs. I was definitely relieved that we seem to get along well with the photographer. We had never met her, which is always nerve-wracking, but sort of the only thing you can do when you're planning long-distance like we are.

This morning my mom and I met with the florist, who I had also never met. She was pretty fantastic. Probably my favorite wedding vendor thus far. She asked me to send her some photos of stuff I liked, and she seemed to get my vision better than even I do. She was just talking about different stuff she could do, and every time she said anything, it was better and better. At this point, there's not a ton we need to do, but it was so exciting to have someone "validate" what I've been dreaming up. Plus, she likes my other vendors and that's always good to hear independently. I kind of just want to be friends with her, but I feel like that's creepy. And as annoying a bride I can be, I do NOT need to add "creepy" to my list of self-adjectives.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

fight the power

So I was reading an article today about Danica McKellar (aka Winnie Cooper of the Wonder Years, and Elsie Snuffin if you're as big a West Wing fan as I am and stuck it out past season 5.). She has her PhD (I think) in math and is otherwise just a crazy-smart super-nerd. She wrote a book called Kiss My Math aimed toward tween girls, to get them to believe that it's okay to be smart and not just boy-crazy. She was on the Today show this morning and explained that "she wanted to put math in terms girls could understand, like boys and popularity." (Then Al Roker told her he would have been more interested in math if his teacher looked like her. Sigh.)

So my internal question is this: can you fight the problem if you're still kind of buying into it?

I am a little conflicted about a lot of wedding planning. On the one hand, I really want to have an amazing gathering for all of our friends and family. And I know people can do that for pennies on the dollar, but you know what? I can't. I don't want to ask my family to cater or do flower arrangements. I don't want to DIY my invitations. Hell, I don't really want to DIY anything. I am not that crafty.

On the other hand, though, I don't want to buy into this idea that you have to have a fancy caterer and flower arrangement and the best invitations. I don't want to, but I totally have.

I read somewhere that the average cost of a wedding in the US these days is somewhere in the neighborhood of $30,000. Particularly in this economy, it's hard not to think about all the "better" places that money could be going. But I guess at the end of the day, I'm only doing this once and I want it to be perfect. We're not extravagant people, and our wedding won't be either, but I have definitely bought into a lot of things that I didn't think I would and I'm not totally comfortable that I have. I guess the uneasiness is probably a good sign--I think if I were spending this much money willy-nilly, someone should probably have stopped me by now.

Monday, December 15, 2008

paper paper paper

So one of the things that going in to this whole thing that I didn't care much about that I now suddenly have strong and irrevocable feelings on is the invitations. Or as they say on the wedding blogs, the Paper. The Paper is an important way to set the tone for your wedding. The Paper gives you an outlet for a recurring motif like a monogram or particular flower. The Paper is very important.

I had never heard of letterpress before I got engaged, but now I apparently have to have it. I had sort of thought I would just go to Kinko's and pick something super simple out of a book and be done with it. Like everything else, this has spiraled into something totally different.

I now have an invitations lady. A whole lady. Just for invitations. Oh, and programs, and seating charts, which I obviously need too. Julie the Wedding Planner says she's just great. (Did I mention I somehow have a wedding planner too?)

Anyway, so I'm meeting with the Invitations Lady next Sunday. The Mister's Mother and I both. (See what I did there? Again?) And that means sometime between now and then I should probably figure out what it is I want out of an invitation. Here's one I like:

I hope the Invitations Lady can work with relatively little guidance. I am not good at guidance.

P.S. RED ALERT: THE MISTER HAS FOUND MY BLOG. I am not good at keeping secrets. Frankly, it's a miracle it lasted as long as it did. Le sigh. Hi, Mister!

Friday, December 12, 2008

I am the luckiest

So I'm one week from freedom, meaning right now I'm mired in...nonsense. But a lot of icky news has come out today--some of which you may have read about in papers or blogs, and some of which is confidential. But most of what I'm talking about centers around women being placed in such awful situations that they have (or at least believe they have) no good choices. Their options are something like let a professor get away with assaulting you or out yourself as a prostitute and ruin your career forever. Anyway, it's the choices these women have that I'm thinking about today as I try to study. And I'm trying to remember that, no matter how much I have a crappy day or have to do things I don't want to (like study, for instance) I am so, so blessed to have, on the whole, a world of great options laying out before me. Suddenly cake or cheesecake doesn't really seem like it should generate any stress at all.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

but this was supposed to be fun!

When I got engaged, the number one thing I was looking forward to was registering. It's like shopping, but with other people's money! And you get the fun scan gun! And I can have any kitchen gadget that my heart desires! What could be better?

The Mister and I both love to cook. And we have a pretty well-stocked kitchen because we use it pretty frequently. But we have a lot of low-budget kinds of things, like SHARPSU brand knifes. Literally. The Mister broke one this week. When I asked how, he replied "oh, I tried to cut something." We are waiting for our wedding guests, to paraphrase Beyonce, to upgrade us because damn, knives are expensive.

Anyway, this weekend we went to Bed, Bath, and Beyond to begin the registry. We're trying to keep the guest list pretty small, so we decided not to register for fine china. I'd rather have everything we actually desperately need than like 75% of that plus some stuff that we might like to have in a perfect world (like and
). So we decided to keep the registry smallish. But then I worry that it looks like we're angling to get cash (which might be nice, but we're certainly not) so we add some more kitchen gadgets. But then I decide we don't need all that crap (nor have anywhere to put it) so we take a bunch of it off. The process was repeated at Macy's.

All through this process, about 4 different women with the frightening title "Bridal Consultants" hovered around, offering to "help" us pick items. Yes, Melissa, I know that this is a wish list. I'm sure, Bethany, that our guests would LOVE to spend four times as much on dishware for us, but I really don't think that's necessary. And no, Lori, under no circumstances do we need fancy leaded glass wine glasses. You clearly have never had wine with us. It usually ends with The Mister doing "the surfboard" dance, me passed out, and at least one glass broken. I'd prefer if that glass didn't cost $24.

Anyway, it's EXHAUSTING traipsing through these stores and trying to strike a balance between "the world is my oyster, and I want this to last forever" and "that's just absurd." This was what I was most looking forward to, and somehow I left ready to cry. Or nap. Preferably both.

Friday, December 5, 2008

and another thing

I guess I did have a lot of wedding-related crap to post about. Hmm. Who knew.

Anyway, I tried on the dress again at my mom's place over the holiday. It's a lot of dress, which is still a concern for me. But it is a gorgeous lot of dress. It's a little snug and so it pulls a bit in the midsection, so that's problematic, but I think it's totally fixable with an actual commitment to working out or the magic of Tony, my alterations guy. (My lazy self says the latter is more likely.) Of course, even having seen it recently I was still shopping on this morning. It's like an illness.

pity post

So I always get mad when my favorite blogs don't update as often as I want them to. Not that I believe this is anyone's favorite blog, but I do feel a sense of obligation to keep updating. Anyway, consider this a pity post, because I have nothing of note to talk about.

That's not entirely true, I suppose. It's just that I've been sick for what feels like a year (and is actually about 11 days) and FINALS are upon us. When I was an undergrad, I actually enjoyed finals period. It meant no classes, and the tests were not hard, so I never studied. FINALS in law school are something completely different. Something ominous. It means no classes, sure, but more than that it means at least 8 straight hours of studying. Day after day. It's even harder this year because I have a job for post-graduation lined up, so the motivation to do well is...well, not real high. Probably why I'm here writing this rather than writing that pesky trademarks outline.

Anyway, I guess I do have at a couple of wedding-related updates. First, apparently the Mister's Mother complained to her niece that she wasn't being included in any wedding decisions. The niece told the Mister, and the Mister told me. Siiiigh. (Also, what is this, 6th grade? She couldn't just tell me?!) It's not that I'm purposefully excluding her, it's just that almost all the decisions made thus far have been made by me, alone, behind this computer, sitting on my couch 250 miles from the Mister's Mother. And frankly, the Mister's Mother is a lovely, helpful woman, but her taste is often...different from my own. Nonetheless, the last thing I want to do is hurt this lovely woman's feelings, so I resolved to include her in what I could.

Second, we have decided on cake. My sister/maid of honor, the Mister, the Mister's Mother (see what I did there?) and I tasted cheesecakes and "regular cakes" over the holiday, and though the regular cake was admittedly quite tasty and moist, the cheesecake was a clear winner. The Mister and I are much bigger fans of cheesecake than regular cake, and this cheesecake was particularly yummy. They decorate 'em up to look like regular cakes with the tiers and whatnot, and we can do different flavors in different layers. I think we're going with plain, raspberry swirl, and turtle. Get excited. I know I am. Excited and hungry. I should go get some breakfast.