Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Bonding Moments

I'm sure by now, you've all seen the video about texting and driving. If not, it can be found here.. but a warning, it's EXTREMELY graphic

J and I were involved in a very serious accident 2 1/2 months ago. We were hit from behind on the interstate, catapulted across three lanes of traffic, slammed into the concrete median, and spun around. After the impact I turned to see J covered in blood. It was the most horrific moment of my life. We both ended up being relatively okay. But we know that we could have EASILY been killed. We deem it a miracle that there were no other cars or 18-wheelers in those three lanes when we crossed them (it was one of the busiest sections of interstate in Birmingham), that there was a median to stop us from crossing into the other side of the interstate (there was no median 100 feet behind us and 100 feet ahead of us), and that no one slammed into us as we were waiting for the ambulance to arrive (we were half way on the shoulder and half way in the fast lane, facing traffic... cars didn't even SLOW down as they zoomed past us.). After the accident I told J that our Guardian Angels deserved a raise, he said "Yeah, a raise... but not a day off!" haha!

According to the speed at which the other driver hit us, we have reason to suspect that he was texting and driving.

J and I were lucky. As we watched this video together we could both FEEL the impact. We relived the horror of looking over and seeing someone you love covered in blood. Those moments when we remember how lucky we were, bring us even closer together. Amidst our near tragedy we realize how grateful we are for each other. In that totaled car that Sunday afternoon we had never been closer.

It was truly a bonding moment.

But, Lord, if you're listening.... for future reference I prefer bonding moments to come in the form of candle lit dinners and long walks on the beach. ;-)

Monday, August 24, 2009

New to Me!

I think the most fun aspect of wedding planning is the dress shopping! I mean, when else in your life can you justifiably try on beautiful gowns that cost more than rent?

As I mentioned in my last post, I'm a total daddy's girl. Well guess what? I'm 100% mama's girl too! I don't want to try on dresses without her there. I'd kick myself if I found "the one" and she wasn't there to share in that quintessential that mother/daughter bonding experience. When I put on my prom dress for the first time, she cried. Come on, crying at a PROM dress??! I'm counting on big ole` alligator tears when I find my wedding gown! haha! ;-)

Unfortunately Mom lives 500 miles away.

This is why, I spend WAY too much time looking at dresses online. It quenches my wedding gown obsession, at least temporarily.

In line with my affinity for bargain shopping, I think I've decided to purchase a used gown. You can get so much more gown for your money by buying a sample or one that a bride has only worn one time.

So the plan is... find dresses I like online. Then find them in the store. Try them on with mom. Blubber and cry. Leave the store. Order the dress online. Save lots of money.

At first I thought this was waaaaayyyyy too risky, but times are a changing. Especially with so many reputable companies out there. As I was poking around the internet a few weeks ago, I found an A-MAZING site

Check out this STUNNER! It's Anne Barge La Fleur Collection. It's simple and elegant and perfect.

AND it's listed for $650!!!!!!!! Are you kidding me?!? $650!?!? It was originally $3070! If we were a little farther in our wedding planning I'd snatch this bad boy up so fast, they wouldn't know what hit them! Check out for oodles of stunning designer gowns at dirt cheap prices!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Dream a little dream....

My Dad and I are very close. In fact, to date, he's the only one that's posted a comment on my brand spanking new blog.

Thanks, Dad.

One of the things I most look forward to about our wedding day, is being escorted down the aisle on the arm of one of the most amazing men I know, to be presented to another one of the most amazing men I know.

That’s what makes the dream I had last night so hysterical.

It was our wedding day. I was at the end of the aisle. Ready to take the most important steps of my life. And MY BELOVED FATHER WAS NO WHERE TO BE FOUND.

I was frantic. I couldn’t find him anywhere! Then I decided to crack open the door to the Church, everyone turned to look at me. INCLUDING my Dad, who was all comfy cozy in a pew up front. I started waving my arms like a mad woman trying to get his attention.

And in a stage whisper I yelled, “Dad, dad, get back here, you’re supposed to walk me down the aisle”.

To which he replied “Oh, I don’t really want to”.

I start balling. I mean ugly cry. And the entire congregation still watching, gasped in horror. In between sniffles I wailed

“You don’t WAAAANT to waaaaaaalk me dowwwwwwwnnnnnnn the aiiiiisle?!

Sniff Sniff.

“Whyyyy don’t you WAAAANT to waaaaaaalk me dowwwwwwwnnnnnnn the aiiiisle?!”

Sniff Sniff.

Dad responded, “Oh fine. Hmpf. I’ll do it. I just don’t really know how”

Next thing I remembered my dad was handing me off to the priest, rather than J and I thought

“Okay, it wasn’t personal, he really didn’t know how”

And then I woke up… but not before I noticed that I was wearing a veil that was VERY 1986. ;-)

Have you had any weird wedding dreams?

Monday, August 17, 2009

You see curtains.... I see TABLE RUNNERS!

I've searched high and low to find black and white damask linens. (Yes, I recognize that my priorities might be slightly scewed, as we have no date nor venue... but I digress.) Other damask brides have gone to great measures and great expense to get thier ideal table linens. They fret over the exact right pattern of damask. Whether it is white on black or black on white. They have thier pattern SILK SCREENED onto fabric. They enlist MIL's to sew countless runners. And have them re-sew them if they are slightly off center. They spend $20 per runner. Or buy $15 yard fabric from some fabric wholesaler in China.

I have to say, after reading their stories, I was ready to throw in the towel and go with some other color scheme.

That's where my beloved Craigslist comes in. I have no idea why I was searching under the "Household" tab, probably searching for SOMETHING wedding related! And I came across a post for a black and white damask bedding set. This woman was selling her King sized comforter, pillows and curtains. Thankfully she sold me her curtains seperately... as much as I love damask I'm not so sure I want to sleep on it... For $30 I got four LOVELY panels of curtains. They are BEAUTIFUL! I am going to cut each panel into three runners (or have my wonderful, beautiful, talented mother do it!). 12 runners for $30! Not too shabby! :-) Maybe I should rent them out to those ladies that are on their way to the silk screeners...

"Sure you did, Sweetie"

I went to a Bridal Show a couple months ago. I entered to win several drawings. One was for a $1000 gift certificate to Diamonds Direct, the store where J got my stunning e-ring. Well, lo and behold, as they were drawing names for prizes, they called MY NAME for the $1000!!! I texted J right away and told him the good news. I was shaking! Barely able to push the buttons on my phone. Minutes later I got a text back from J that said "Sure you did, Sweetie". J, ever the jokester, thought I was playing a joke on him. *Sigh* It wasn't until he held the gift certificate in his hands that he believed me!! haha! Then we celebrated with and ice cold Bud Light! What's funny, is that before they called my name I thought to myself "I'm gonna win this!" Ah, the power of positive thinking! :-)

I think the wedding band that matches my ring is around 2k. This gift certificate is like getting my ring half off! For two people that love bargains as much as J and I do, we're practically giddy!

Invites from Michael's?

I am among the many brides that have fallen in love with black and white damask. I think it's so elegant, modern and chic... I hope I still think so in the future... because I've already gotten my invites!! They are this sweet diy set from Brides Magazine at Michael's. The set includes printable invites, response cards, directions cards; ribbon, jacket, seals & mailing labels. I fell in love with them. As I've been doing wedding research I've found that a gazillion other brides have fallen in love with them too. Oh well. I'm trying to get over that desire for our wedding to be completely 100% utterly unique. Does it really matter if someone that has been invited to our wedding has ALSO been invited to someone else's wedding using this beautiful set from Michael's? J and my love is unique and special... and our wedding day will be too, regardless of what invites we use!! Plus they come 30 in a box, and were only $20!
Speaking of invites. . . I just got the invite for my dear friend Ana's wedding. They are STUNNING. Letterpressed on thick paper. I fell in love with them. *Sigh* Ana is so elegant, it's no surprise that her invites were too! :-)

The beginning of my wedding treasure hunt!

J is a yard sale snob. I was never much into buying other people's "junk", until I met him and discovered the practically unused treasures that people were almost GIVING away. On Saturday I found 150 slightly used wedding bubbles for $1! Yay! I haven't really decided if we'll be one of those "bubbly" couples... but for a dollar it was worth having the option!

I also found a pair of wedding shoes at the same yard sale. They were worn once by a MoB. Theiy're Kenneth Cole, with rhinestone straps. $60 originally. And, delightfully, they only have a slight kitten heel. I LOVE high high high heels. But I hate being taller than my man. And can't imagine towering over him on our wedding day. They are a just a tad tight across my toes. But I figured they'd either stretch out, or I'd give them to MY MoB, who has more dainty feet than I! Due to J's expert haggling I got them for $7! Much more logical than the $900 Christian Louboutin bridal shoes that I've been lusting over! I mean, who even sees your feet!?!?

I'm getting MARRIED!

I’m in love with a man that is the complete opposite of what I expected.
Years ago I wrote “the list”, and oh sure, he has all of the important things (ie. loving, close to his family, great sense of humor) but none of the qualities in my subcategories (ie. No Doctorate from Yale. Dark and handsome… but definitely not tall. And much to my chagrin, he’s not a millionaire). In fact, after our first date I turned to him, as if I were the hiring manager at a job interview, and said matter-of-factly “you have none of the qualities on my ‘list’”. Thankfully this didn’t dissuade him.

Fast-forward two years… In the exact same spot where he asked me to be his girlfriend, he asked me to be his bride.

I burned my “list”.

Now I’m planning to marry the most unexpectedly magnificent man I’ve ever encountered.

My parents are equally magnificent. They have generously agreed to pay for our wedding. Then my dad got a pay cut at work. In a shaky economy he’s grateful to have a job, but this throws a major loophole in the extravagant “platinum wedding” I’ve been dreaming about since I was a little girl (and admittedly, planning since well before I was engaged.) Mom and I are working hard to reign in our expensive tastes. After weeks of touring Crystal Ballrooms in fancy hotels, we’ve agreed to only view places that actually fit into our tight budget. We believe that with some creativity, ingenuity, and great sales we can create a platinum wedding on an aluminum budget.

Thankfully, for me, finding deals is like a game. I love wearing designer clothes that I got from thrift stores, jewelry from yard sales, and shoes from clearance bins. And I LOVE telling people that my dress only cost $2.00, after they compliment me on my style! With so many great deals available, I pride myself on being high maintenance… on a budget.