Tuesday, October 30, 2007

i heart witches

This is clearly not wedding related, but I wanted to share this video I found on Chicagoist.

I realized watching it that some of my absolute favorite movies have witches in them and lots of my favorite witches made the video clip. I don't do scary movies (The Birds, It and The Shining killed that for me), so all my witches are kinda not that scary. I watched Wizard of Oz so many times as a child that I burned through a VHS tape. This love was not carried over to Return to Oz however- the "wheelies" gave me some serious nightmares and that witch was a little more witchy. I loved the super creepy Witches with Angelica Huston. There is also a little known live action Hugga Bunch movie with a fabulous witch who had to eat magical apples to stay alive. Of course, Snow White and Sleeping Beauty feature some wonderful witches.

My all-time favorite witches are in Hocus Pocus. I LOVE Bette Midler and she is divine in this movie- as are SJP and Kathy Najimy. This was the movie that caused my then five year old brother to scream "I'm not a VIRGIN!" in the middle of a McDonald's playland. There is a fun part where Garry and Penny Marshall play an old married couple rather than brother and sister (sick!). There is dancing and singing and some really fabulous costumes.

I will end here with a quote from the hilarious Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

Sir Bedevere: What makes you think she's a witch?
Peasant 3: Well, she turned me into a newt!
Sir Bedevere: A newt?
Peasant 3: [meekly after a long pause] ... I got better.

What is your favorite witchy movie?

Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 26, 2007

i heart cheesecake lollipops

I don't actually "heart" cheesecake. I have eaten a lot of good cheesecake (Eli's is a hometown favorite) but it just never knocks out one of my top five desserts: oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, Hagen Daz Bailey's Irish Cream Ice Cream, lemon cake with cream cheese frosting, my mom's cranberry white chocolate cookies and my mom's Milky Way cake.

Cheesecake is Jake's favorite and he really wanted some cheesecake at the wedding in addition to our wedding cake. I really don't want a traditional sweets table with the cream puffs and petit fours. In my experience, everything is usually so dry by the end of the night that I avoid it all together. I will not, however, deny my guests the goods! So, we are having a version of a sweets table that includes wedding cake, a few surprises and cheesecake lollipops.

Everything tastes better on a stick, don't you think? Particularly when it has been dipped in chocolate.

i heart pretty wreaths

When I saw this in an old issue of Martha Stewart Weddings

I knew I had to have it. The wreath doesn't get enough credit in floral decor, due to, I believe, the overabundance of crafty ladies at Michael's constructing them out of silk flowers and ivy. I have always been a big fan of a pretty wreath, but you do need to be careful not to stray too far into "something my grandma made" category. I think you do this by sticking to one flower/leaf/branch and only varying from that in the color of that flower.

I really wanted white floral wreaths hanging from the huge, gorgeous front doors of our church. Unfortunately because it is an older church (built in 1918) and is very beloved by its parish, they have very strict rules about how you can decorate within the church. Since it is generally pretty ornate, I am not too worried about having large floral displays near the front doors or the alter. I am pretty sad about the wreaths however.

After speaking with my florist, I think I might be able to do something on the end of the pews. This is very cost prohibitive, however, since a wreath of stephanotis can cost close to $100 and I would need quite a few on the pew ends. This got me thinking of a plan B. Peonies not in season, roses would be almost as expensive, hydrangea might be doable, but what about...

Thank you, Mrs. Strawberry!

Yes, that is baby's breath. Yes, I normally rip baby's breath out of bouquets as soon as they are handed to me. It ranks right up there with the dreaded carnation. But doesn't it being on its own make a big difference? I think it has a vintage feel to it. Lots of texture and movement. Its white, which is key when the church has 1.2 million colors painted in the frescoes. Oh yeah, and its dirt cheap. Nice!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

i heart our engagement photos!

We already have our engagement photos! Although several remind me that I should stop laughing in public to avoid showing off my extra chins, there are some really fun ones. I ended up making another trip to Anthropologie (because its the only store I know how to shop at, apparently) and I found a fun, flowy shirt and a jersey jacket. The jacket was this gorgeous golden yellow color and it made me hopeful for fall leaves at the Morton Arboretum.

Dean asked us if we wanted to bring Maisy along and we, of course, said yes. We love that dog, and you can tell from these photos. Dean had suggested that we go for a beer before the photo shoot and we both concluded that we should have listened to him. It was such a strange experience and I think a little liquid courage could have helped us relax. We had to look casual and unposed while being very aware of the camera on us at all times. Jake makes me laugh, a lot, and you can also detect that in these pictures. I think thats the only way I got through it!

I read a few tips from Weddingbee and other blogs before I went and I thought they were helpful. I will try and do that in another post as well, based on our experience.

Here are a few of the photos and there are more on his site. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

i heart shopping... usually

Jake and I are all set to take our engagement photos on Sunday with our photographer, the very talented Dean Thorsen. Since we set the date, I have been shopping around for something to wear. I do love to shop, when I have nothing to buy. When I actually need something and I don't know what I am looking for, I get really flustered.

I have my fingers crossed for bright sun and fall leaves. We are taking our photos at the beautiful Morton Arboretum and I hope to do some romping around in trees, so hopefully the leaves will cooperate. We picked this date because Jake and I love fall and we thought it might be fun to capture the beautiful fall Chicago weather while it lasts- snow is just around the corner.

So that got me looking for "fall clothes," whatever that means. I found this jacket at my favorite store:

Is it weird to wear a coat with fall leaves on it when you are taking pictures with fall leaves? As much as I love this coat, I kinda thought so. I spent over an hour in Anthropologie and walked out with two shirts and a sweater and I am not excited about any of it. I like them for going to class or dinner with Jake, but I feel like I will be looking at these photos for the rest of my life. If I say, "gee, if I had only decided to wear something else" every time I look, I will not be happy.

Anyway, back to the drawing board. I have come to realize that I don't even know where else to shop. Any good suggestions?

In the meantime, here are some of my favorite engagement photos from Dean... enjoy!

Yes... Maisy is coming!

Sexy, huh?

i heart crazy wedding stories

This is literally unbelievable.

Thanks, Jezebel!

Here is a dramatic presentation of bridesmaid #1, the one on the right side of the happy couple. "I should have said no, right? I knew she was crazy but I just kept telling myself that she's been my friend for a long time and its just one day... right? But no, that attention grabbing little snot couldn't just get married, she had to get herself in the Guinness @#$%ing Book of World Records. Maybe if I keep staring at the pavement and zone out for awhile I will wake up in time for the martini bar. Oh, wait, no... she wants to walk some more. Let's go team!"

i heart happy dreams

I had my first wedding nightmare last night. Apparently this is a right of passage and that all brides have them, but I am not looking forward to the next one! I did, however, manage to give it a happy ending.

Its the morning of "the big day." For whatever reason, My mom and I have another wedding to attend that morning, starting at 9am. Some random girl with insane 80's hair is having her wedding in Kinnick Stadium at the University of Iowa. It is, effectively, a rock concert. There is a stage at one end where the ceremony is taking place and the seats are packed with screaming fans. I kept thinking, how can one person know so many people? I start feeling bad about my meager 200 person guest list. Why don't I have more friends?!

Then I realize it is 11:15 and my makeup artist was due to arrive at 9am. I have no idea where the rest of the bridesmaids are because I forgot to tell them what time to meet me. Why didn't I make those schedules I was planning on making? Why do I always procrastinate? Why, oh why, didn't I plan better? My mom and I rush to this dingy hotel suite that I had reserved for us all to get ready in. It was so dark and gross and I just started crying. My memory starts to get fuzzy here, but at some point I realized it was a dream. My wedding isn't for another year!

Instead of waking up, I decide to turn it into a happy dream. Strange, but true. I conjure up some schedules and imagine that I had handed them out weeks ago. I bibbity-bobbity-boo it and suddenly the dingy suite is a gorgeous lounge with lots of gourmet food and flowing champagne. I literally remember waving a wand and suddenly all of my bridesmaids had perfectly styled hair. It was so fun, I can't even describe it.

In the dream I thought, when I wake up, I am going to make that schedule! Then my procrastinating mind got the better of me and reminded me that I still have 11 months to go. Hopefully, I will be receiving that magic wand from my registry because I will never learn...

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

i heart anthro

I don't know what it is quite yet, but I have a feeling its going to be good.

I went shopping at my favorite shop, Anthropologie, today in search of something to wear to our engagement pictures next weekend. I am still in San Francisco so I made a trip to the store in Union Square. As usual, I hauled way to much stuff to the dressing room and then had to make some tough choices. I do love that store, but the prices prevent me from going to town.

At the register, the very helpful sales associate asked me if I wanted to register for Anthro. For what? Their new "rewards" card. Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be one of those buy 10 get one free gimmicks (otherwise, ca-ching!), but there seem to be some other benefits. No more digging around for a receipt for returns as they will all be stored in some database. There will be some early bird specials, although I think its more along the line of get it first rather than get it cheap. They also seem to be looking for more feedback from the customer.

Hopefully it will grow to be a little more, but for now I am happy to join! Plus, look at the presentation! There was a fold out card on pretty green cardstock, a mustard card and an adorable little bag. They get me, they really get me.

i heart buttons

Mrs. Strawberry posted about her place cards today and I loved them! Jake and I have been talking about doing something with buttons at the rehearsal dinner, but it might be fun to keep it going into the reception. Apparently we have a connection at the Busy Beaver Button Co and I plan on taking advantage of it!

Here was her original idea from Martha:

And what she ended up with:

I love the relaxed feeling of it. I also like the idea of using images on buttons as table numbers.

This idea convinced me yet again that I need to learn calligraphy...

I am in San Francisco this week soaking up some awesome design ideas. I will be posting later on my adventures.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

i heart sex and the city!

Oh my goodness, look at this! And more here! Could it really be true?!

I can't wait to see the movie. There better be an some amazing flowers at that reception. I think I will avoid copying that particular fascinator, however. Before I get too excited, I will remember the other spoiler pictures of Charlotte and Big screaming at each other and realize that it could be a dream... I mean, really, she could marry Big but not perfect Aidan? Seems crazy to me!

i heart my european vacation

I saw a post on Weddex this morning about the 3rd wedding anniversary of Katie Lee and Billy Joel. What an amazing wedding! I love the colors and the warm glow. That Marcy Blum is pretty amazing! I included a photo with Howard Stern and his fiance Beth purely for Jake's enjoyment- but I am sure you can imagine the guest list.

What I particularly love about this wedding is that I knew Katie Lee before she tacked the Joel onto her last name. The summer before my junior year in college, I traveled to Europe through a school study abroad program. We lived in Florence (ahhh, so nice) and were able to travel all over due to our three-day work weeks. Not that school was all that bad- we studied the art, architecture and literature of Florence. Our guide to the art and architecture was a beautiful man from Liverpool who reminded me of Hugh Grant. It was so amazing to be able to talk about the Birth of Venus, and then go look at it. Talk about the Medicis, and then go look at their castles. I guess the David was cool, too. The literature part was pretty fabulous too as I was as big of a political science geek then as I am now and Machiavelli really does it for me!

Anyway, there were about 8 of us who traveled around together, including myself and Katie. We went to Venice, Nice, spent a night in Genoa when the G-8 Conference was in town and protesters wouldn't let the trains move, Munich and Interlochen. One of my favorite memories of Katie was in Interlochen when we decided to go canyoning. You basically jump of cliffs into tiny little pools of water, fight freezing cold currents and occasionally remember that you are in the Alps. The beefy Australian guides would tell you not to worry, you will be fine... but if you move your head out of that position you will break your neck. Katie ended up getting scared and hurting herself, but we had to keep going because once you jump off a cliff there is no turning back- literally, we weren't mountain climbers! She turned to the guides at the end and said "I can't believe I paid you to do that to me!" I wish I had owned a digital camera then, because I would post some of those photos. I transfered schools and unfortunately I lost touch with a lot of those girls. They were great travel buddies and I wish I could do it all over again!

Katie was warm and funny and I am so glad I got to know her. Happy Anniversary Joels!
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