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25 Universal Truths about Men

{Completely unrelated but fabulous picture from Jessica Claire}

On the way to work this morning our local radio personalities were discussing this article, "25 Universal Truths about Men." They were listing off the 25 things that this person, Bob Grant, has deemed to be true about every man. I am sitting in the passenger seat thinking that some of these are ridiculous, and look over to see my loving fiance nodding along in agreement with the list. What? Really? It was an eye opening morning in our little Volkswagen. Here are some of the "truths" that evoked fervent agreement from my other half:

2. I hate arguing with you. I’d much rather find a compromise.

8. I don’t read minds. Remember, I’m not a girl.

11. I hate being told what to do when I don’t ask for help. It makes me feel like you’re my mother.

13. Being respected is more important to me than being loved.

15. When I’m upset, I am very tone sensitive. How you say it is more important than what you say.

16. I hate it when you minimize/ignore my compliments. It makes me want to stop giving them.

18. I don’t always know how I feel. That’s why I don’t tell you.

19. If I do one thing and say something contradictory, go with my actions—that will always tell you what’s in my heart.

21. If I don’t share what I’m thinking it’s because I don’t think you will listen without interrupting.

I'll admit that I am one to brush off compliments (really? I think I look terrible in these pants) and can definitely be on the bossy side, so I can't say that all of these were shocking. But I am glad that he didn't agree with the list in it's entirety (number 1 is a little disturbing). You can read the entire article here. What do you think? Accurate list? Have you ever had any "eye opening" conversations that gave you insights into your significant other?

My Veil is Here!

It arrived all wrapped up in this box, with an ivory bow tied around it. It's harder than one would think to take a self portrait of a veil, and we don't have a full length mirror (ridiculous, I know) so my options were limited. The few I tried to take over my head were down right frightening, so here are one of the veil alone and another of just the bottom:
I highly reccommend veilshop.com if you're interested in something basic and don't want to spend a fortune. The fabric swatches they sent were very easy to match to the dress, the veil looked exactly how I was hoping it would, and the shipping was incredibly fast. Wearing a veil was never really important to me & at the beginning of this process I was pretty sure I wasn't going to have one at all. So even though I changed my mind I didn't want something that was going to be overly fussy & I have no intentions of this becoming a family heirloom. I just wanted something simple, and this fits the bill!

Because My Hand Can't Take It

I am beginning the process of printing and addressing our Save the Date's (I promise detailed pictures when they are all sent out) and I am quickly realizing that I don't have it in me to also write our return address by hand. I was hesitant to buy an embosser, because I really want to get one of those with our married monogram on it and don't want to end up with two. Then I found these stamps from Expressionery, who just so happens to be having a 30% off sale that includes free shipping. Perfect! I used our first initials only so that I am not breaking tradition but can still use the stamp after the wedding. And while I was there looking around, I also found that they sell notecards you can stamp yourself. I love this one:

The Orb is Here!

I might be a little too excited about this, but can't help myself! The picture above is how it arrived, all tucked away in it's box. And here is a picture of the inside:
And one of the ring in her new home:
On a completely unrelated note, someone got a haircut today. They always put bows in her hair afterwards which I love and B immediately removes. This one might be my favorite so far:

Muse Weddings

There is a great new site, Muse Weddings, where you can essentially house all the ideas, inspiration, budgets, and schedules for your big day. There aren't any "To Do" templates like there are on The Knot, you build your own from the ground up. So while you have to put in a little more work up front you can customize the entire site to meet your needs. I experimented a little today and converted the spreadsheet I've been using for our budget into their online format in about 10 minutes. Now I can access it anywhere - well worth it! My favorite parts are the budget and schedules (you have the option to export to both Excel whenever you want). The entire format is really clean & easy to use, and the whole site is free! Definitely worth checking out.

Sand Ceremony

We're getting married outdoors, so including a unity candle in the ceremony was pretty much eliminated from the beginning. I do really like the idea of including something to signify that we're joining our lives, though, and the sand ceremony seems like a great alternative. The idea is that there are three vases (just like the candles)...one symbolizing the bride, the other symbolizing the groom, with the final vase signifying the two of you joined together. To start the ceremony, the groom pours part of his sand into the center vase:

Then the bride follows with some sand from her vase:

And then both of you continue to pour simultaneously until the center vase is full. I've seen pictures of couples using funnels created out of paper, where the paper has some words significant to them written on it. Like this:

So, while I love the idea of the ceremony, I was majorly turned off by the colored sand. Something about it just seems to really increase the cheese factor, and that alone has prevented me from actually ordering the vases. But when I put some thought into it I came up with what I think is a great solution (if I do say so myself). When I was little we spent time every year in a certain place in Florida. There are a LOT of great memories from there, 90% of which involved being on the beach. So several years ago, after a family reunion there, I filled two Ziploc bags with sand from that beach and brought it home with me. No clue why I did it, I feel a little crazy even typing those words, but now I am glad that I did! When we were at my parents house last weekend I went downstairs and promptly found the shoebox containing my sand....best part? It's white sand.

Our ceremony will take place in a location that my fiance spent nearly all of his childhood in, a lot of which also included playing on the beach. The sand from his memories just so happens to be a perfectly contrasting color of brown. So, for our sand ceremony we're each going to pour actual sand from our respective childhoods into a vase that we can keep forever. Perfect. It's all about making things as personal as possible, no?

The pictures above are all from My Divine Wedding, you can have the vases engraved in several different ways. Grooms initial on one, brides on another, combined monogram on the center vase, etc. I think we're going to opt for just the monogram on the center vase. They have a few different options for vases, but really you could use just about anything. I also like the idea of using the sand ceremony to join blended families, each child gets his/her own vase:

I am working on a few different invitation designs this weekend and hopefully printing out our save the dates, so there will be much to discuss next week! Have a great weekend...

A Rustic Wedding

A few weeks ago Tara blogged about The Enchanted Barn (picture above), and since then I've seen several pictures that make me think of the barn and how I would plan a wedding in it. Yes, I might be slightly crazy, but it's just so charming and there are so many possibilities! So when I picked up the a copy of Chicago Style Weddings, I had to share these pictures. I think all of this decor would just go perfectly in that barn, with candles covering every last inch.

Who wants to start planning this wedding?? I'll help you :)

My Kind of Valentine

I absolutely can't believe that Valentine's Day is right around the corner...wasn't it just Thanksgiving? I wouldn't count myself as a huge fan of the day, but I do like a good valentine now and then. I am, however, a big fan of any and all things created by Orange Beautiful and also a daily reader of their blog. Their latest non-cheesy Valentine creations are no exception...you can check out and purchase them in their Etsy store.

They also have a great fantastic collection of boxed cards and announcements, and create custom invitations. This one is my particular favorite, it was just featured in Brides Chicago:


{All images from Orange Beautiful's Etsy store and blog}

Check!

On Sunday I was finally up for a little wedding talk, and my Mom and I actually wound up getting several things accomplished. One of which was ordering my veil! I've posted before about my desire for a long one, but I also don't want one that is very full. Anyway, I ordered swatches from veilshop.com awhile ago and brought them with me to my parents house so we could compare them to the dress. The "light ivory" was a perfect match, and I got an e-mail today that the veil is already on it's way to me! I'll be sure to take pictures when it arrives, but for now here are some from their site:

Find That Dress

Last week I got an e-mail asking for help finding a dress. This person is looking for a dress where the collar almost looks like a shirt collar with a v-neck. She would also really like it to be strapless. The first thing that came to mind is the jcrew dress above, but it's definitely not strapless and I also don't know that it's for sale any longer (although it could probably be found somewhere and altered). I did a little searching and found this dress on Brides.com: And this Carolina Herrera (again, obviously not sleeveless): I am almost sure I've seen a dress like this somewhere, but I can't find anything that looks exactly like what this bride described. So I will put the question out there to all you blog readers - any suggestions? Thoughts on designers or where she could go to find something resembling what she wants?

I am back!

This was the longest break I've taken since the blog started, and it wasn't a welcome one. But I am finally starting to get over what I am now affectionately calling "thesickestihaveeverbeeninmywholeentirelife." Alright, I do realize other people go through much worse, but it was by far the worst I have ever felt. But I am once again able to get off the couch, so enough of that! One of the first places I checked out upon my return was the wonderful Jose Villa's blog. And as usual, the photography is amazing and this wedding is beautiful. I love the fabric (shocking, I know) in combination with the bright flowers! Enjoy...

Another Ring

Nope, not another ring for me. There is another engagement ring in our family and this one belongs to my little cousin and maid-of-honor (soon to be matron-of-honor). She got engaged over Christmas and not one to beat around the bush, she will actually be getting married before me! They are planning a spring wedding, one complete with bright colors and gerber daisies. So in honor of those upcoming nuptials, I tried to create an inspiration board that will hopefully make the early planning stages a little easier:
{first row: macaroons from paulette; dress from jcrew; calligraphy from Bluebird studios; second row: flowers from flickr, shoes from jcrew, carrot hearts from oooh you tasty little things; third row: calligraphy from Lauren Hooper found via Snippet & Ink, drink from google search, flowers from Bridalwave}

Green With Envy

Even the name of this Coach purse is cute, Madeline. Why must I get e-mails about things like this? If anyone is looking for a last minute birthday gift... :)

MrsHoya

In my last post about the wedding featured in Inside Weddings, Julia left a comment saying that the bride is actually MrsHoya from The Knot. Apparently she's rather famous in the bridal world, and I am just catching on now! Who knew (definitely not me). So, naturally, I went to her bio and found even more amazing pictures. Maybe this will finally convince B to get me that vespa I've always wanted...probably not. The picture of the groom's pocket square has almost sold me on the idea of getting rid of bouts all together, all of the groomsmen in that wedding look fantastic:
Thanks for the tip, Julia!

Inside Weddings

I was looking for some photos for an inspiration board today, and came across this wedding featured in Inside Weddings. It was actually photographed by Jessica Claire! You can find more photos on her blog, but these were some of my favorites. In the article there is also a quote from the bride, which I think is insightful: "Instead of adding more costly 'stuff' to our wedding, we added more meaning to the day. We let go of such things as stretch limos and pricier wines and instead focused on having a great party that had meaningful elements." That said, they do have chivari chairs, but nonetheless.

If the Shoe Fits...

I've posted about my shoe dillema before...B isn't that much taller than I am and we're having an outdoor ceremony, so I really need something under two inches and it can't have a really pointy kitten heel or I will sink. And, honestly, I can't walk in anything much higher than 2 inches anyway! I really really want these (Shannon Britt):
Or these (Kate Spade):


But they're both over a two inch heel, and I also decided that I wanted at least a peep toe. Why is it so hard to find a pretty, dressy wedding shoe that is under two inches?? If I knew the first thing about shoe design I swear I would create a line of them. A good friend of mine is in the same boat, and yesterday we found these shoes (Something Bleu):
The best part? The sole is light blue. Plus, they're dyeable so they can be worn after the wedding. So I ordered a pair last night and got an e-mail today that they should be here by Friday! I have two weeks to return them and am going to my parents house next weekend (where my dress currently lives) so I'll be able to try them on with the dress. I am happy, but still lusting after the Shannon Britts...

Matching Necklaces

Next weekend my maid of honor will be trying on what I hope will become the bridesmaids dresses. They'll be black tea length dresses and I really want to tie the green in somehow, probably with jewelery. The necklace above from Banana Republic is my current favorite but I can't decide if it's too "much" or not. Through the magic of illustrator I put a rough sketch of it on the dress model:I think I really like it paired with the actual dress! Thoughts?

Monogram Etiqutte

I was getting ready to make a wedding related purchase this weekend (more on that later) and as I got to the personalization portion, I was stuck on the monogram. It's something we're going to use during our ceremony so I think we can get away with using our combined monogram. But as I got ready to enter our initals, I wasn't sure who's was supposed to come first. I wanted it to be the style with our married surname initial in the middle & each of our first initials on either side (like the one above from Jack & Lulu). I am sure there has to be etiquette for who's initial is supposed to go where, but I found a lot of conflicting info. I know that prior to the ceremony you're not supposed to use your married monogram anywhere, but if you want to use one you can simply use your first names, like this (image from Lucky Me!):
Or you can use a combination of each of your first and last initials, something like this (image hastily created by me just to use as an example):
Through my research, I also found out that traditionally only the woman's monogram should appear on any linens. I see it done differently all the time, but if you're going "buy the book" apparently that's how it's done. But as far as the three letter monogram, I found info that says the woman's name (and therefore initial) should always be listed first as a courtesy. Then I also found that the man's initials should never be split up, so his should come first in the three letter design:
I know that it doesn't actually matter, but I like to be accurate! I've tried to look for a Peggy/Emily Post answer to this and came up with nothing. Crane's has a lot of info about individual monogram's but I am not coming up with much as far as couple's monograms go. Any ideas or resources?