Sunday, June 29, 2008

paper source is going green

Usually I am in the Paper Source because I need something other than white paper, but currently the only eco-friendly option is their Eco White. Times are changing, however, and Paper Source is changing all of their papers over to at least 30% recycled. Yay! You can read more about it here.

In the meantime, there are some fun papers that are printed on Eco White. I love their Zinnias print.



And polka dots!



Colonial Indian Chinz



And these cute little fishies.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

hostess with the mostess event tonight


I am so excited for the Hip Hostess event tonight! I love that blog and I cannot wait to soak up a little inspiration. I am going with a few of my favorite bloggers, Mrs. Radish and Mrs. Emerald from Weddingbee, and hopefully a few more friends. Will I see you there??? :)

Monday, June 23, 2008

welcome home!

Jake and I have been on a major roller coaster for the past year. After a lot of thought and careful planning, we decided to put our lovely condo in the south burbs on the market last June. There were rumors about a real estate market downturn in the Chicago area, but like a lot of homeowners, we felt that our place was special and that we wouldn't have those same problems. We were wrong. Fortunately, other than some major stress over driving to work, to friends and to family, we did not NEED to sell our place. We were financially secure, we hadn't bought a new place yet and no one had been transferred to a job in a new city. We had, however, staged our house to high heaven and it no longer felt like our home. We were mentally ready to go.

Then, one lucky day, a young couple came through the condo and loved it as much as we had. Within 24 hours, we were under contract. We close in one week (fingers firmly crossed, prayers to St. Joseph said daily) and we are nervous, excited and a little bit scared about taking the next step. Please meet the next step:


We still have another three weeks until we close and I might be jinxing myself by posting this picture, but I had to share because it has been totally consuming my thoughts for the past month. It needs a little (read: a lot) of TLC before we can move in and it will look a bit different when we are done. We have been doing a lot of research on bungalows and Craftsman style and we are a bit excited to restore the home to its original glory. We had our inspection this morning, and there weren't any major surprises (yay!) which means we are planning to move forward with the contract.

As you might imagine, this is all a bit overwhelming since the wedding is in 74 days. I am now so grateful that we delayed our honeymoon until January! The beach will be so, so welcome after months of demo, sanding and painting!

Any tips on keeping cool would be appreciated :)

chicago bloggers happy hour


Tara from In This Instance and Tina from With This Ring, I Thee Obsess are planning a happy hour for Chicago brides and bloggers. If you are from the area or are planning a trip, be sure to head over to WTRITO to vote on your preferred date! I am so there.

Image from Tina :)

Friday, June 20, 2008

si, lo voglio!

At some point in high school, I became obsessed with Italy. I would buy travel books to Rome, write reports about it and spend hours fantasizing about my future trips to Tuscany. I bought a few basic books on the language and taught myself how to say a few quick phrases- my favorite was Buon Natale due to my other obsession over Christmas and that my name is Italian for Christmas. I signed up for Italian courses in college in attempt to prepare me for my (as yet unplanned) big trip. It didn't go so well. I was able to study abroad in Florence, but my Spanish/English/Italian language combination was not helpful. "I speak English better than you speak Italian, so lets speak English" was my daily disappointment. I drank more chianti and tried to get over it, but their attempt at kindness only stifled my ability to learn the language.

Imagine my joy when I found si lo voglio (translate, I think, to "Yes, I want you!"). It is an Italian blog- written in Italian by a woman named Pasadena- but with quite a few American influences. It turns out that we all speak the same language when it comes to wedding blogs! I can easily follow along based on the photos and my meager Italian, and no one is correcting me for taking too long to translate. Pasadena posts a lot of fun pictures for inspiration, so feel free to head over there even if you don't speak that particular romance language.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

get ready to swoon

Jake and I have really been wrestling with our first dance song. We have hired a pretty talented band that can play almost anything, which is fortunate due to our somewhat atypical song list. How many bands could play all Wilco through dinner? For that first song, however, I want something that is easy to dance to so that we can just hold each other and enjoy the moment. We have nearly identical taste in music and this has been one aspect of planning that we both enjoy. Jake surprised me by signing us up for dance lessons (cutie pie), and we have decided to just pick up some fun moves and get comfortable dancing to our song rather than create a choreographed show.

Here is one of the songs that we have been considering. When Jake and I were just friends, he was regularly writing a great blog about local politics and other random things that interested him. He would often post links to his favorite songs. We had our first date on Valentine's Day and he posted this song for me. I dare you to not grab someone and slow dance while you listen to it!



Otis Redding, These Arms of Mine

beehive kitchenware

I found Beehive Kitchenware 's handmade, unique metal products a few months ago via poppytalk. I have been invited to quite a few showers this summer and I love little things like this to give as gifts. Yes, sometimes I do buy off the registry! Is that bad? I mean... have you seen this stuff?

I want one of these little dishes for a my ring (soon to be rings!) while I wash dishes/put on lotion/apply my hair products.

How cute are these little candlestick holders?

I am always looking these up while I am cooking. Eventually, they will be committed to memory, but in the meantime this little hook would be helpful!

These cute little measuring spoons are Beehive's signature product. They are cute AND useful. Perfect!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

martha's peonies

I realize that there has been a lot of peony talk lately but... er... check the name on the blog, lady! Martha threw a little party dedicated to my favorite flower and these pictures made me swoon. Martha in a straw hat! Fields of peonies! Darcy Miller! Chevy Chase!





I have a major crush on Chevy Chase, or as I like to call him, Clark W. Griswold, Jr. I would have LOVED to be at that party! Talk a little shop with Darcy, then hang on to Clark's every word. Hmmm... A girl can dream.

Monday, June 16, 2008

my sadness over peonies really sets in

Check out my mom's peonies!




They would be PERFECT for my bouquet...

... if peonies were still around in September. My florist is working to find something equally big and romantic that might serve as a substitute. We have talked about roses and dahlias.




Any other suggestions?

erin's wedding!

I was lucky enough to act as a bridesmaid for my best friend Erin's wedding last week. The professional pictures are already up on Dean Thorsen's site, and they are FABULOUS! Here are a few of my favorites.






I love this one of Jake and me! I've already ordered a copy.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

i bought my veil!

Isn't it lovely?


Heehee. I bought her off of a fellow Chicago bride. She enjoyed the car ride home in the back of my Honda. She is cathedral length, ivory (a really beautiful shade, actually), custom made from Priscilla of Boston and it was about half of what I budgeted for it. Very, very simple but she looks gorgeous over my dress. Here are some pictures of the original owner, looking fabulous in it. She is actually wearing two veils here, and I only purchased the cathedral one.


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

sweet almond macaroons

I love these little macaroons. They are such a light, pretty color and I love the sweet almond flavor. They would make a perfect wedding favor.

Miette

Jordan of Oh Happy Day (I love that blog even more than macaroons) posted a recipe and a few tips for making them at home. You could make them the week before, package them, pop them in the freezer, then let them thaw the day before the wedding! You would want to do a test run to see what happens when they freeze and defrost in your selected packaging, but I bet there is a good way to do it. I will definitely be trying these out sometime soon.


Saturday, June 7, 2008

hiya to the blue orchid readers!

I am so glad you are here :) I have been a HUGE fan of Liene's throughout my long engagement and I was so honored to have been included!

I thought I might treat you to a few photos of my best friend's wedding from yesterday. There are more here. Enjoy!

The bride's gorgeous bouquet


The bride and her maids!

The very, very happy bride and groom

The cupcake tree!

I will have more soon with all the fun centerpieces and decor. I am off to more wedding celebrations!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

antique lace

Isn't this so beautiful?



Photo via Sweet Paul
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