Thursday, December 27

End of 2012

Well, Christmas is over and I am happy to be back to my normal routine. Ben heads back to Jersey tomorrow (indefinitely :( or at least for a couple more months) and things will be quiet around our house. No real plans for new years, not really feeling a big to-do this year. A quiet dinner with friends would be nice!

I suppose it is time to kick this wedding planning into high gear. As of today, we have 156 days to go...which sounds like a long time, but hopefully I can spread my to do list out so it isn't overwhelming. I'm going to get the envelope liners glued into the save the date envelopes, get them stuffed, addressed and out in the mail by next week. That reminds me, I need to head over to the usps website and get those stamps ordered! oops!

I hope you all had a fabulous holiday! I'll be back in the new year...see you all then!! It's going to be a good one :) xoxo!

....And because I love ya'll so much, here is a sneak peak at our custom crest for the rehearsal dinner...deets to come!


Thursday, December 20

December BirchBox & Last Minute Gift Idea!

 I got my last Birchbox in the mail the other day. Hopefully Santa will renew my subscription for Christmas :) I have loved getting these little goodies in the mail each month. This month was no exception. Here's what I got:
  1. Large sample of Nick Chavez® Beverly Hills Advanced Volume Shampoo with Expansion Technology® - lord knows I need some volume in these limp locks!
  2. Frownies® Eye Gels - these look neat! Can't wait to give them a try!
  3. A full size ModelCo SHINE Ultra Lip Gloss (worth $16 alone!) I got the strip tease color and its a fabulous neutral. It smells delicious and the tube has a handy dandy mirror on it!
  4. Juice Beauty Stem Cellular Repair CC Cream - I've been wanting to try the new CC creams, this one supposedly is designed to moisturize, prime, protect, and conceal imperfections all at once - we shall see!

  5. A sample size of Cartier Baiser Volé Eau de Parfum - I'm not a huge perfume wearer, so wasn't too thrilled with this.



Need a last minute gift idea?! Why not give a subscriptions to Birchbox? You can do 3, 6, or 12 months ($30, $60, $110), just go to the "gift" tab on the website. It really is so fun to receive in the mail each month - plus every time they get their monthly package they will think of you :) 



Monday, December 17

Charleston Weekend Recap

Lauren and I arrived in Charleston late Thursday and had a jam packed, fun weekend! Thanks to Alissa for letting us crash at her house! 




The weather was gorgeous!


My appointment at Modern Trousseau went great! I'm all measured for the dress and all the details are decided. I cannot wait to see the finished product when I go back in March! Jen at MT is so wonderful and fabulous to work with! 


Came across this wedding band while shopping on King St...too much?! I kind of love it with my e-ring!


Saturday was Alissa and Chris' engagement party! 
I can't wait to be apart of their wedding in April 2014!!


Lauren and Alissa and I went to Lula Kate and successfully picked out my bridesmaids' dresses! We did end up going with the Sophie top but chose the full skirt rather than the cocktail. The cocktail was just way too much skirt!

A lovely and productive weekend! Looking froward to returning to Charleston in March for my bachelorette weekend!


Wednesday, December 12

WWW - Bridesmaid Attire

I'm headed to Charleston this weekend to get measured for my dress at Modern Trousseau! They measure me for it now and it will be made and ready by March. I have finally decided on all the details of the dress (how low for the back, sleeves, neckline, etc) and am ready to get it into production!

So with my dress and accessories covered, I have waited until the last possible minute to make a decision on bridesmaids' attire. I have chosen to go with Lula Kate's Sophie dress, so long as it is as pretty in person. I'm checking it out this weekend while in Chuck as well. I'm not sure about the exact fabric yet, it is hard to tell from little swatches. So hopefully I can choose one for certain while I'm at Lula Kate this weekend.



Getting things checked off! Feels good! Much to do still...mostly details, which are the fun part! According to my monthly timeline/checklist, by the end of the 6 month mark I still need to: 1. Reserve a hotel room for wedding night (kind of done) 2. Book day or transportation for the bride, groom and bridal party (MUST DO!), 3. and update passports if necessary...guess we would need to pick a destination first, I don't think Ben has a passport. 

At 5 months to go (Jan 1) I need to: 1. Select bridesmaids attire (will be complete by next week) 2. Provide bridal shower guest list to maid-of-honor (done) 3. Update registry lists for bridal showers (done) 4. Research honeymoon destinations 5. Finalize invitations design and order wedding invitations (eek! hard decision!!) 6. Check invitation proof (duh) 7. Test drive directions before printing directions card (umm that's stupid. done) 8. Reserve rental items (lighting, dance floor). 

COME ONNNNNN June 1st!!! 



Monday, December 10

2012 Christmas Cards

Well, folks, this is our last year of Christmas cards as a non-married couple! Which is good, because I always kind of felt like I probably shouldn't be sending out Christmas cards from "us" when we were neither married or even engaged (for like the last 5 years). But, this year we are engaged and next year we will be married, so all is good! :)


I went with a Holiday Postcard from Minted for this year's card. Everyone is about to be inundated with photos of us when our Save The Dates go out after the first of the year, so I thought I'd spare everyone a giant picture of us and decided on a non-photos front with just a small pic on the back. I love how they turned out...and hey, I saved on postage too!



I have a problem...

side pics.


tell me I'm not the only one! 

Thursday, December 6

Winner

The winner of the Graphic Image datebook giveaway is Kristen! I hope you enjoy your new Pink Croc datebook!!


Wednesday, December 5

WWW - Forget Santa's List

Let's talk MY list! I've been marking things off like crazy lately! Ha, at least a few things. Recently I've booked a day of coordinator, chosen a baker and selected a cake, booked my hair and makeup gal, and started to feel like this wedding is really going to happen! It has been such a long engagement, the wedding has felt so distant and not really like I've been planning my wedding. I don't know how to explain it...But now we are under the 6 month mark, 5 months on Jan 1st!


This is the picture I showed the baker for our cake. We switched it up a bit and added a monogram. The cake will be buttercream rather than fondant (which I love the look of, but hate the taste), so it may look a bit different. I'm on the hunt for a stand and topper!

I'm at the point where I'm not just gathering ideas and selecting vendors, I have to make real choices, like what the cake flavors will be and what flowers I want in my bouquet - rather than the "feel" I want for the flowers :) Oh, and bridesmaids dresses. I don't know what it is with me and bridesmaids dresses but I cannot decide on one for the life of me. I want the palest of blues, silk, and a flattering cut. I've got to decide by January so that we have plenty of time to get the dresses in and have them altered if need be. Thinking Lula Kate or Anna Elyse.

I still haven't decided if I want to pay for a videographer. I know our photographer will give us amazing pictures, so do I need to spend the extra cash on a video? Did you all use one? Any suggestions for Lexington?

Here is my updated list...I need to stop adding this to it!!


Overall:
1.     Set a date
2.     Book a venue
3.     Book photographer
4.     Engagement photos
5.     Book videographer
6.     Book band
7.     Ask bridal party to be in wedding
8.     Create wedding website
9.     Book florist
10. Buy wedding dress
11. Select bridesmaid dresses (will do by end of Dec)
12. Select and order groom & groomsmen attire
13. Find veil
14. Book cake baker
15. Buy cake knife and server
16. Order save the dates
17. Finalize guest list
18. Antique cake stand
19. Cake topper
20. Ring pillow
21. Order save the dates
22. Send save the dates
23. Order guest book
24. Register
25. Reserve hotel room blocks
26. Hire a calligrapher
27. MOB & MOH dress shopping
28. Find wedding shoes
29. Choose wedding jewelry
30. Find garter
31. Clutch for bride
32. Sash or belt for bride
33. Something old
34. Something new
35. Something borrowed
36. Something blue
37. 6 pence
38. Hire Day-Of Coordinator
39. Make day-of emergency kit (coordinator provides)
40. Going away outfit (maybe)
41. Book makeup artist and hair stylist
42. Wedding favors or photobooth (if photobooth then picture book)
43. Getting ready outfit for bride and bridesmaids
44. Menu tasting
45. Cake tasting
46. Hair and makeup trial (April)
47. Get measured for dress (Charleston, Dec 2012)
48. Dress fitting in March, then take it home to KY and 
have alterations done closer to the wedding date 
49. Order invitations
50. Send invitations
51. Bridal party gifts
52. Purchase wedding bands
53. Put together picture list for photographer
54. Get marriage license
55. Book transportation for wedding party
56. Welcome bags
57. Gift for Groom
58. Music selection for band
59. Playlists for cocktail hour
60. Book wedding night hotel room
61. Order thank you notes
62. Tips and thank you notes for vendors
63. Signs for bar, guest book
64. Distribute timeline/contacts to family/vendors/DOC
65. GET MARRIED!!

Ceremony:
1.     Book musician
2.     Book church
3.     Pre-marital counseling (through church)
4.     Wreaths
5.     Yard sign
6.     Programs
7.     Confetti
8.     Music selections

Reception:
1.     Book caterer
2.     Order rentals
3.     Decorations for bride and groom’s chairs
4.     Candles (votives, votive holders)
5.     Bar menu sign
6.     Framed family wedding photos 
7.     Cocktail music etc
8.     Monogram table runner for cake table
9.     Escort cards and table number signs
10. Make table assignments and seating charts
11. Painting (or something) for the fireplace
12. W for over bar area
13. Monogram napkins
14. Personalized cocktail napkins OR drink stirs
15. Flip flops
16. Accessories for the bourbon bar(cigars etc)
17. Sparklers
18. Bandaids, or anything for bathrooms at club
19. Card box…??
  
Rehearsal Dinner:
1.     Book venue
2.     Rehearsal dinner music
3.     Rehearsal dinner décor/flowers/cups
4.     Rehearsal dinner caterer
5.     Rehearsal dinner rentals
6.     Order invitations
7.     Send invitations
8.     Music selection
9.     Slideshow
10. Signs for food, etc
11. Napkin and utensil packets
12. Table runners

Sunday Brunch:
1.     Choose a location (Invite close family & bridal party)
2.     Order Invitations
3.     Send invitations

Excetra:
1.     Bachelorette party (booked)
2.     Bachelor party
3.     Bridal showers
4.     Book honeymoon
5.     Honeymoon shopping
6.     Bridesmaids Luncheon
7.     Groomsmen Golf Game

Friday, November 30

36 hours in NYC

Ben is working up north, so we were able to drive into NYC when I flew up to visit him for Thanksgiving. It was a whirlwind trip! We had lots to see in the short 36 hours we had up there! Ben had never been before, and I hadn't been since like elementary school. His first time in the subway was fun :) LOL he kept referencing "Home Alone 2" bahaha! We got there Wednesday evening, checked into the hotel and then headed out. First we went to the financial district and then hit up a little bar for some happy hour beverages. After that we moseyed on over to Little Italy for a delicious pizza dinner. We were pooped after dinner and made our way back to the hotel to get some sleep.


We were up bright and early Thursday morning to head out and see the parade. Holly moly, ya'll! It was SO crowded, but super cool to see it in person! I've always watched on TV from home, and IRL those balloons are gigantic. Being super short I didn't get to see anything much besides the balloons, no seeing the street-level action from my vantage point! We ran around the city all day and were sure to check out central park. After getting changed we went to Benjamin Steakhouse for Thanksgiving dinner and ended up sitting next to the nicest couple from Texas. We had such a great time! 


After stopping in for a nightcap at The Campbell Apartment (thanks for the suggestion, Britt!) , we went on back to the hotel exhausted! We did see someone famous there...the redheaded girl who always plays the bff or supporting role - she was the assistant in "The Wedding Planner" and the friend in "27 Dresses." So, yea...kinda famous! ha! 



Friday morning we walked through Central Park to Laduree, stopped in David Yurman and Jimmy Choo, then headed back to the hotel to check out. It was a quick, busy and fun trip! If Ben ends up working in the Northeast through the spring, I hope we will get to make another visit to the city! 


Wednesday, November 28

Graphic Image Datebook Giveaway!!

Tis' the season for gift buying and planning for the upcoming new year! A gorgeous Graphic Image 2013 datebook is a great gift for the busy person in your life and for yourself also! Add it to your wish list ;)

They come packaged all pretty in a buttery yellow box - ready to gift! Seriously, these are the prettiest planners. I wanted something professional but still pretty, so I ordered the blue croc with gold initials! I went ahead and got my new initials, seeing as how we will be married in 2013.

Graphic Image is giving away a datebook to one lucky reader! The size and leather is your choice. Just leave me a comment on this post and tell me what style and color you would choose...you can see them all right here. Giveaway closes next Wednesday at midnight, and I will announce the winner next Thursday 12/6! (You must be a follower of Just Lovely to win)


Tuesday, November 20

See ya' next week!

Be back next week... Have a fabulous and safe Thanksgiving with your loved ones! Although I will be away from my family, I am grateful to be spending this weekend with my Ben :)


Wednesday, November 14

WWW - Our Band

It's Wednesday again! That means another addition of Wade Wedding Wednesday! I thought I would share with you all our band. We just booked Soul Explosion this week and I'm SO thrilled! I've heard such great things about them and I think they are sure to get people up on the dance floor enjoying the reception! I wanted a band that would play only Motown and oldies and Soul Explosion's song list is extensive and really captures what I am going for. Plus, they will add a couple of songs that I'm requesting for our first dance and father/daughter dance (more on that later).



Fun, no?!

Oh and PS - If you will notice on the right sidebar...we are officially past the 200 day mark! 199 and counting :)

Tuesday, November 13

the black house

A cursory glance at my Pinterest board "Curb Appeal" would show you that my ideal home is painted a pristine light color with dark shutters accented with lush landscaping. But, as of late I've found myself falling for a richer, darker version of this color combo. I'm dreaming of a black house with light trim. What do you think? Too crazy? 


Tuesday, November 6

the dreaded diet

Planning a wedding is fun, overwhelming at times, but for the most part all enjoyable. There are decisions that may be hard to make, costs you don't want to stomach, and family pressures...but picking out pretty dresses and flowers, tasting yummy cakes and attending all the events leading up to the wedding are something I have and do look forward to. Something I'm not looking forward to? The dreaded wedding diet. We are just past the 7 month mark, so I'm planning on getting on the band wagon soon. I've been going to Pure Barre regularly since February, but have recently taken a bit of break. I'm ready to add something new to the regime. I'm thinking about getting a personal trainer and someone to help me with meal planning. Ideally I'd go to a trainer 2x a week and pure barre 2x a week until about 3 months before the wedding. At that point, I hope to be down the actual weight I want to drop, and just work on toning - which I will do by going to Pure Barre.


My biggest obstacle is eating right. I don't cook often and usually just grab a can of soup for lunch and fix something like a sandwich for dinner. What was your pre-wedding diet and/or exercise plan Anything that worked or didn't? Just good old fashioned healthy eating and regular exercise?


Thursday, November 1

Dear Christmas

Dear Christmas, Thanksgiving called and wants is moment in the spotlight back!

What is UP with people switching right into Christmas mode following Halloween? Have we forgotten all about that lovely little holiday of Thanksgiving?! Who doesn't love a day off work, a day whose primary purpose is delicious food recognizing and giving thanks for our many blessings!? This post is for poor little ol' Thanksgiving, the holiday that gets shoved aside by that limelight hogging Christmas holiday.

One of my favorite ideas for the next holiday~ "The Thankful Tree" from Simply Vintage Girl


This looks easy enough to recreate. Collect thin branches from the yard, place in a mason jar or vase, cut 2" circles of scrapbook paper and hole punch each one. Guests can write something they are thankful for on each of the tree's "leaves" at your Thanksgiving gathering, or have your kids write one thing they are thankful for each day of November leading up to Thanksgiving...by the time the holiday rolls around, you will have a tree full of blessings!


Tuesday, October 30

Now

Been super busy around here. Super busy and super dreary and cold. I spend all day today in a dreadfully boring continuing ed class and now I'm snuggled up on the couch catching up on DVR missing Ben (he is oot for work).

 I'm getting last minute things finished for our Junior League's Holly Day Market which is next week. I've really enjoyed being on this committee this year and am excited I was selected to be on it again next year. I think it is going to be a great event and if you are in the area, please come do some shopping!!


Friday, October 26

under construction

Please excuse the mess...I'm working on the look of the blog. Time for some updates!!

Wednesday, October 24

WWW - All In The Details I

What do you most remember about a great wedding? What sticks in your mind? A great band? The food? For me, it's the little details that make the occasion unique to the couple and make it stand out from every other wedding. We are getting married at our country club, everyone and their brother has a country club wedding....so, I think it is important that I pay attention to the details, to make our day special and different.

I'm going to start sharing some of the details I will be incorporating into our big day. At this point, lots of these things are still just plans, nothing has come to fruition thus far. With that said, of course I may not end up doing some of the things I will post about - in the end I imagine time and budget will play a hand in what will get done.

Up first, our wedding map! I've always loved custom maps for weddings. Be it for a save the date, or included in out of town guest bags, there are so many uses for them. The first wedding maps I came across (years ago) were by Laura Hooper. I loved the calligraphy and hand drawn locations...but, at nearly $500 for 100, they are out of the budget.  Then, I kind of moved away from preferring the LH style, and fell in love with a water colored map, like Designs by Robyn Love. Gorgeous, no?! Such a fabulous keepsake from your wedding! But, again, just for the design of the map prices start at $400.

I went hunting for an equally lovely, more affordable option. I found CaligrafiaBella, whose work is gorgeous, but her design fee $200 and you don't get the original artwork included in the price. So, I kept looking. That's when I stumbled up JLH Art Studio. She doesn't have the calligraphy that I love, but her artwork is fabulous! For $75 you receive the original artwork, an 8x10 size. You can then take it to a local print shop to have postcards or whatever made up and hang the original in your new home (well, mine won't be new, but whatever!) This is what I think I will do, add postcards to the guest bags with the weekend agenda and schedule printed on the back side. They will make for a nice souvenir for our guests!

{JLH}

What do you all think? Is JLH a nice compromise or should I shell out a bit more and get my beloved calligraphy from CB (who is still significantly less than the other options listed)?

{CB}

Do you like the idea of a wedding map? Did you have one? If so, how did you use it?

Friday, October 19

WWW - How to put together a Wedding Planning Notebook

EDIT: Well, I was attempting to update the photo on this post and not re-post it...but apparently that is not possible! So sorry for the duplicate post!! However, I did update some of the info in the post!

I love lists. Lists for everything! There is something so satisfying in making a to-do list and marking it off as you accomplish tasks. Don't you agree?! I also need to have a tangible, in-my-hands planning tool in order to stay organized. I put together this Wedding Planning Notebook so that I could have everything in one place. After doing some research, I've added in lists, forms, and lots of things I had no idea I would need for planning our wedding! (The printables will link back to their original source)


I purchased all my products from the Martha Stewart office line. If you don't want to make your own planner, as I did, Martha has a pre-made planner for just $25. (I spent more than that on the binder, dividers, etc.) I got all my things from Staples, and they are beautifully color coordinated and pretty! I bought the binder, clear zip pouch, sticky notes, dividers (x2) and calendar. (here is a coupon, good until the end of 2012)

Now of course you can organize your binder however best suits you, but here is how I organized mine, what I have put in it, what I'm going to be adding to each section and how I plan to use it.

First up, the clear zip pouch I have used for fabric samples, business cards, etc. The sticky notes are for, well, notes (duh!) and I've used the little tabs for making additional sections by putting them on pieces of hole-punched card stock to serve as subcategories within the blue dividers.



After this I have the calendar. I do obviously have a colander on my computer (that is synced with my iPhone) but I like to have an actual paper & pen calendar too. (edit: I haven't actually been using this. I'd suggest you save your money.) I think this helps with long term planning. I will have dress fittings, cake testings, etc on here, but more importantly deadlines! I want to keep track of when payments are due, contracts have to be signed and final decisions made.


After that I have 10 blue dividers. I have broken them down into these categories:

  1. Important 
  2. Budget
  3. Ceremony
  4. Reception
  5. Guests
  6. Attire
  7. Photographer
  8. Florist
  9. Rehearsal
  10. Miscellaneous. 
I added photographer and florist to theses because they will apply to ceremony, rehearsal and reception. Within these categories I have added subcategories and worksheets and checklists that I printed from the web.



  1. Important
  2. Budget
  3. Ceremony
    • Copy of Ceremony text
    • What to Ask Your Wedding Officient
    • List of processional & recessional order
    • Contracts
    • Officiant contact information
    • Cost & tips
    • Music to be played and any musicians contracts, contact info and fees
    • Decor
    • Any seating arrangements and reserved seating 
    • Program
    • Confetti 
      • (Clearly all these items won't actually be going in the binder, but I will put the order forms, receipts, etc in there to make sure I keep track of it all and that I have completed it all.)
  4. Reception
    • Timeline of reception (dance, cake cutting, toasts, flower toss, exit, etc)
    • Music
    • Rentals (separate subcategory) w/ contract (see bottom for link to template) 
    • Decor
    • Setup info and instructions
    • Menu
    • Beverage List
    • Playlist with noted special songs (1st dance etc)
    • List of who will be giving toasts
    • List of people to thank at reception
    • Favors
    • Cake
    • Guest Book
    • Photo booth (if we end up having one!)
    • Exit sparklers
    • Reserved seat signs
    • Toasting glasses
    • Band contact information, pricing, tips etc
    • All relevant contracts
  5. Guests
    • Guest list (I will probably do all this in a  spreadsheet)
      • Mailing address
      • RSVPs
      • Dinner choices
      • Gifts received list
      • Thank you notes sent
    • Guest hotel information
    • Welcome bags
  6. Attire
    • Bride
      • Schedule of fittings etc (this is redundant, but I want it here too) 
      • Dress
      • Jewelry
      • Bag
      • Shoes
      • Lingerie
      • Veil
    • Groom
    • Bridesmaids
      • Dresses
      • Accessories
    • Groomsmen
    • MOB
    • Ring Bearer
  7. Photog 
    • Contract
    • Must-have photo list
    • List of everyone needed for photos - break this down into names (i.e. Courtney, MOH)
    • Any props (Don't think we will have any)
  8. Florist
    • Contract
    • Pricing & budget
    • List of arrangements for Ceremony
    • List of arrangements for Reception
    • List of bouquets
    • List of boutonnieres 
    • Flowers for family members
  9. Rehearsal
  10. Misc...

I also recently came across this fabulous source of Wedding Templates from "Russell + Hazel" - I definitely suggest you check it out for additional helpful form and such!






Thursday, October 18

GiGi New York Giveaway!!

GiGi New York is teaming up with Just Lovely to giveaway one of their gorgeous leather cosmetic bags to one lucky reader! Winner has their choice of color and personalization! Enter by next Thursday, October 24th!


My favorite? The rich eggplant color. Add a gold monogram and it's the perfect pouch to pop in your purse to keep everything organized! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, October 17

WWW - my Fiancé is 30!!


Happy 30th Birthday to my stud muffin husband-to-be! I love you so very very much! Here's to many many more birthday together as husband and wife! 



Monday, October 15

We have a winner! (Minted giveaway)

Congrats Legally Fab! You won the $50 Minted.com giveaway!!! Now get Dirk ready for his close up!



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, October 11

Happy Wedding Weekend, Rebecca!!!

I just wanted to wish one of my dearest friends, Rebecca (Beaker), a very happy wedding weekend! Rebecca and I were sorority sister, roommates, and best friends. I love you and am so so happy for you and honored to be your MOH :)

A few pics of us through the years!










Cheers! Wishing you many years of happiness and love!

PS don't forget to enter my Minted giveaway!! 
You could win $50 for some fab holiday cards!!