Monday, June 30, 2008


Can we bridge the great divide?
Photo: Brett Butterstein

My fabulous fiance is not the type to talk wedding colors, photographers, venues. He doesn't get it, would rather not talk about it, and doesn't understand why I would! So far it hasn't bothered me much because I realize I have plenty of time, and as he repeats over and over: I need to study. I do try to sneak in the occasional song, just to ask him what he thinks. I usually don't get much feedback.
So I took the hint, I haven't brought any wedding plans up in a while.

But last night: a breakthrough. He had gone to a BBQ while I studied all day and called on his way home to tell me that he and his buddies had made beer with a homemade brewing kit. "You can make your own labels online!" he told me, explaining the whole process. "That's awesome babe! We'll have to get one!" I responded. "Wouldn't it be cool to give our own beer as favors for the wedding? It could say Amy and Bret on it. And we might be able to put a picture too!" He sounded thrilled.
my home brewery image found here

I was floored. Not only was it a rather cute idea (DF works in the beer industry) but it was his idea, and to top it all off he was excited about it. I just grinned silently as he recapped the BBQ for me. I have no idea what the cost would be, or if it's feasible. But that's not really what mattered.

He's been bitten.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

The Latest

The greatest thing about a relatively long engagement is the that you get the chance to change your mind and really take everything in before you must commit.

So here's the latest idea board. Several things remain the same--Candles! Barn! Comfortable!

Top row: all images found via the knot.
Second Row: rose wreath from Elizabeth Anne Designs, barn from Leigh Miller, tree invitation from the knot, rose bouquets from David's Bridal, caricatures from BV weddings,
Third Row: barn from Leigh Miller, photo of hills from Mendocino Hill Event Center, flowers from the knot, escort card wagon from brides, bm bouquet from Amanda Bevington Modern Photography
Fourth Row: Flowers from The Bride's Cafe , mad hatter cake from Better Homes and Gardens, all other photos from the knot.

photos from Amanda Bevington Modern Photography

I am in love with the color of these bm dresses. Never much of a purple person, I was surprised when these caught my eye. I find this particular shade to be so elegant while also lending itself to the rustic feel if done appropriately. Don't they look great next to the pink flowers?

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Premature Purchase?

As soon as I saw the "dancing shoes" idea I knew I had to have it. Cheap, colorful, practical and appreciated! I know I would surely appreciate slipping into the comfy-rubbery goodness that is the flip flop if I had been wearing heels all day!

Love the baskets and the bursts of color. Image Source: uknown!
Fancy! Image from: The Bride's Cafe

So when Real Simple posted information about the $1 flip flop sale going on at Old Navy this Saturday...the wheels started spinning. Do I order?

And if I do, how many? Oh my-decisions! What colors? Next year?
Make sure to snag your own. This Saturday only!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Day One

image found here (no I am not using relacore)

Things have gotten a little bit out of control for me lately. The past three weeks have been quite the roller coaster ride. One day I'm focused, studying hard, eating right and sneaking in some exercise. The next I'm binge-snacking, doing anything but studying and feeling anything but focused.
It needed to end.
I know that if I want to pass this test I have to be on top of my game. I have to be unstoppable. I have to be *clear*.

It's been a year since I started my change. I've lost 50lbs and in the past few months I've slowly started putting them back on! I needed to take action since each day has been posing new obstacles. I busted out the old "Day One" menu for the program I had been following. While I made the breakfast I have made so many times before, I realized that this time I needed someone to keep me accountable.
Moments later, as I piled the 50+lbs of Bar review books into the trunk of my car, I dialed my bestie aka MOH. While we have completely different shapes (she's way more athletic than I) we have both lost and gained a substantial amount of weight in the past two years, and we both need to lose a good chunk more.
"Hello??" she answered, surprised to hear from me on her daily commute from SF to San Jose. "I'm starting a 21 day challenge," I blurted, "Exercise, eating right and getting focused." I was literally gasping for air after lifting my heavy load into the car.
"Wait? What? Yeah, I'm in!" She seemed ready.
We chatted for a bit about what we were committing to and what the groud rules were. We will be weighing in tomorrow morning, along with measurements. While we both have different ideas about health and weight loss (she's way more athletic than I) I think we will be a good influence on eachother.
If our midday texts are any indication, I think we're off to a good start!

me: "are you having a good lunch?"
moh: "mmm, salad, ff dressing, water"
me: "so good! fiber, water, no salt!"
moh: .....

While my tummy was grumbling as I studied, I know I can power through it. I'm ready to get started on these next 50lbs! I'll keep you posted on the next 20 days!

Sunday, June 15, 2008


I heard this song for the first time today. Jason Mraz ft. Colbie Caillat, "Lucky". This video is super cute too.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Gifting the Guests

I have to admit that my first inclination was to ditch the favors. Honestly, I don't really care about them when I go to a wedding. The reason: I've never really gotten a good favor. DF went to a wedding the weekend after he met me and did get a pretty sweet mini bottle of wine with their names and dates on it. But do we drink it? Save it? It sits on our wine rack.Pretty. Useful. Not tacky. Love it! But it's about 5bucks each when you order 100.

Then there is the magnet from "Monica and John's" wedding. I have never met them, or even heard of them, but it's been on the side of DF's fridge since before I moved in. It's literally a clip art bride and groom with their names and the date. The last wedding I went to gave almond hershey kisses in clear boxes. So. Yeah. I've never gotten too excited about wedding favors.
I thought this was so adorable. Kind of useless, but at least it makes a visual impact. Since everyone knows DF is a huge SF Giants fan, it would be very fitting. But it's probably a no. Photo Found via Pearl's Events

My new favorite favor idea...caricature sketches! I think this would be so fun. It would keep guests occupied during the cocktail hour and I think we would all get a good laugh. My goal for my wedding is to have people truly enjoy themselves. As I pick and plan in my head I try to imagine myself as a guest at my own wedding. I think I would be super excited if I went to a wedding and got to take home a funny sketch of myself (and DF). The problem is, I have NO idea how much this would cost.
Photo James Sanders via BV Weddings I've found a great artist in the bay area. I'm waiting to hear from him for pricing info. Check out his work here.

Another great idea is to have someone cut your guests' silhouette. I loved this wedding featured on BV Weddings. Again, I have no idea how pricey this would get. It's a bit more formal than the caricature, but what a great memento!
Photo: BV Weddings. Artist's site here

And of course I do love the candy buffets and the midnight snack idea. The milk and cookies favor was one of the first things I just loved when I started looking at wedding stuff. It's just so adorable!
Photo from Brides I love the idea of making homemade cookies for our guests. I've always baked cookies with my mom and grandma and I know they would be so proud to provide the favors. My favorite part- the unlimited possibilities for cute packaging!

Again, no immediate decisions to be made but I'm having fun soaking in the possibilities. Would love to hear more ideas!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

You Can Take the Girl out of the Country...

So I'm not really from the country. But I definitely wish I was! I've always had an eye for the rustic chic so when I became engaged and actually took a minute to picture my wedding-a barn instantly came to mind!

I quickly determined that while I wanted the rustic barn look, I also wanted it to look very romantic. And comfortable. As in people wouldn't be sitting on hay bales or fighting for room in horse stables.

Eucalyptus Lane in Ventura. Photo by Leigh Miller

This is one of the first places I'd ever seen that was exactly what I wanted. Ironically it is located in my hometown. While it seemed absolutely perfect, the price, restrictions and the fact that I wanted to be able to actively plan my wedding in person rather than over the phone or during rushed visits home, I nixed it. Barns. Old trucks. Chandeliers. What more could I ask for? Photo by Jose Villa. Wedding at Atwood Ranch
Yes, please! Leigh Miller

Wow. This is exactly the feel I would love to have. From Knottie NetterB

Now I'm obsessed with having a barn wedding. I can't even look at halls, hotel ballrooms or complete outdoor spaces because nothing compares for me. DF was hesitant at first, but is on board so long as it's not crazy expensive. I've found a place that is about 1.5 hours away from our home and even closer to his family and friends. It's more than I want to pay, but definitely still in range. I wont be able to visit til after the bar, but so far it's the front runner. I've run the idea past most of my friends. While most agree it is very "me" I wonder if I will be the only one enjoying the rustic chic that is the barn reception.

You Think You Know....Tag

Tagged by Jessica Lynn at Tying the Knot (love her photography eye-candy) for a couple of "fun" facts. You know you want to know...

1. What were you doing ten years ago?
I was 14, wrapping up good old freshman year. I was the super involved "achiever" and LOVED being in high school. I had just starred as "Truvy" (aka Dolly Parton) in our school's production of Steel Magnolias. I had a group of about 15 close girlfriends, 3 of whom will be BMs!

2. What 5 things were/are on your to-do list for today?
I'm on a pretty crazy sched lately. Let me quote it for you.
7am- Criminal Law Multiple Choice w/review
745am-walk with maverick, get gas ($$$) get coffee
845am-More Crim Multiple Choice w/review
10am-outline Criminal Procedure
1pm-finish outline Crim Procedure
3pm-break, go home, make phone calls check google reader and email
5pm-back to work
6pm-quick dinner
630pm-get back to work
9pm-relax time

3. Snacks you enjoy? FroYo, fiberone cereal bars (i'm addicted), berries, almonds

4.Places you've lived?- Ventura, Ca. San Diego, Ca., London UK (ok not really-just for a summer), Sacramento, Ca
A view from the pier in my hometown. Photo from: Flickr

5. What are 5 things you would do if you were a billionaire?

1. help my family, buy Dad his dream boat

2. buy various properties

3. start a scholarship at my high school for the girls who were like me, hard workers who want to go to law school but are not quite "up there" enough to get the major scholarships

4. Donate to something I am currently passionate about and become involved in it on a higher level.

5. Start some sort of animal rescue program.
and of course put some away and try to live the same way I do now. Although billionaire is pretty crazy....
I tag The Fairmount Bride...she has some great eye candy as well!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Tag Team, Back Again

I was tagged by my most-favorite Sac area bride-to-be and new WeddingBee blogger (Miss Pomegranate if you please), better known as Kate of Kate's Wedding!
So here it is,

Link to the person who tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
Share 5 songs you are embarrassed to admit to others that you like and tell why.
Tag 7 random people at the end of post and include links to their blogs.
Let each person know they've been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog
So this is tough because almost all of my favorite songs would probably make this list so I'll randomly choose 5.

1. She's like the wind- Patrick Swayze (The Dirty Dancing Soundtrack)

2. Push It- Salt n Pepa ( Get up on This!)

3. Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays- *NSYNC (umm, yep)

4. Suavamente- Elvis Crespo (it's in spanish, but I know everyword)

5. Feed Jake (old country song about feeding your dog. My lil bro and I would belt this one out back in the day)

6. Hold On- Wilson Phillips (classic second grade jam)

7. Any song by Dr. Dre or Eminem (I'm hardcore like that)

Ok so I went with 7 bc I just couldn't narrow it down. I have 20 but, these will have to do. Ok so I'm going to tag A Windy City Wedding! And anyone else who wants to admit to their secret iTune downloads....

Table Names: The Road to Love

So of course any detail-obsessed bride is going to do something creative with their table numbers, escort cards, table names etc. I saw a lot of ideas I liked for table names/numbers, but I couldn't come up with anything original to us.

How cute are these table number frames? Each table was a year with their corresponding picture. How on earth did she manage this one? Found via Weddingbee Contests

The places we've traveled together: not many! I've been in law school! Our favorite restaurants: embarassing to say the least. Childhood photos: adorable, but incredibly time consuming (especially if you've seen my mother's photo-organization skills). Our dog: my favorite, but definitely been done before. So what to do?
First of all, love the centerpieces. Secondly, the table names were the military alphabet (alpha, bravo, charlie) definitely unique! From The Knot

I had a lightbulb moment! Yes, as I was studying Real Property for the bar, I thought: Street Names! I quickly jotted down a list of streets with meaning. Obviously the streets we grew up on, the streets where our grandparents always lived, the street we currently live on, the steets our families currently live on, and THEN just to make sure we have enough we can incorporate made up street names like Maverick Blvd. to include the special things we want to highlight. DF's mom lives a block away from a "Lover's Lane", so that will probably be the name of the head tables!
Lovers Lane Sign from Flickr

I like that I can then seat the people in the streets that they will identify with. It just so happens that a lot of DF's family friends all live on the same super long street! And I know my aunts and uncles would get a kick out of sitting at "Berkeley Rd" which is the street they all grew up on. I am so excited. I am SURE this has been done before, but I definitely have never seen it, so it's original to me!
Love the shape of this one. Found on Corbis

Once I got the idea down, I tried to brainstorm ways to execute. Would we make signs shaped like real street signs? Would we take pictures of ourselves at each street sign? I've always loved chalkboard table numbers, just write it out on a rectangular chalkboard sign?

The pictures of the lovebugs with the typewriter-bearing table number came out super cute. This one at mini-golf and another at the movie theater were so much fun! I'm sure it took a lot of time, but I think we could do something similar!
There are a lot of possibilities for having this as a motif. I was inspired by Mrs. Lovebug's wedding. While I'm not really into themed-out weddings, her old fashioned type writer motif was executed perfectly.

Ok, so any additional ideas or tips for the best way to execute are welcome!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

You say boo-kay I say bow-kay

However you say it, it's a common denominator in almost all weddings. From the single stem, to the voluminous cascade, bouquets are a wedding mainstay (obviously).
As much as I thought I'd go for something totally original and unique, I realized recently that when it came to clipping images that piqued my interest for my own bouquet, I was continuing to go for an all time classic: white roses. Now, I started with my fair share of crazy succulent, artichoke-inclusive arrangements, but as I started to really think about the pictures and the overall look and feel, I wasn't feeling so edgy.
This was one of my original favorites....but I'm not really feelin' it anymore. From The Knot
Photo By Amy Carroll found via Pearls Events

If I do get my dream barnyard/rustic chic location, I may consider a loose, wildflower/freshly picked arrangement that compliments the scenery. I liked this one, but still-not completely sold.
all photos found via The Knot

The above board reflects my current vision. I definitely want the stems exposed and tied with a lush ribbon (color to be determined) like the one on the bottom left. I Love the rustic, wild flower look of the top left/bottom right bouquet. The roses in different sized blooms is just gorgeous, the only change I would make would be to have a few more open roses (like the ones in the top right corner). I have always been in love with garden roses (aka English roses) and will want those to be involved somehow. I love this look, but am still not positive I want to go all white. From Martha

It seems all good in theory, but can be less than impressive in photos since it gets lost next to your dress. I'd love a blush pink, or some sort of washed out hue with my bm's carrying a small nosegay of flowers in a more vibrant color-or maybe reverse that. Hmm?Photo: David's Bridal Banner

I LOVE these tiny BM arrangements. The beautiful garden roses are so fresh and look like they are from, well, a garden actually! I'm not so much into the greenery, but this is just enough to make the flowers pop against the dresses. I adore it!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Bedtime Tears?

Several nights a week, I end my evening by watching the latest blog post from Elysium Productions, an Orange County based wedding video production company. Their work is some of the best I've ever seen, and well it usually leaves me all teary-eyed. The music, the cinematography and overall style gets me everytime! While most of their weddings take place in the OC or LA area, their most recent post was from a wedding filmed in Sonoma, Ca last October.
All of the weddings they shoot are pretty over-the-top amazing, but I cannot get over the cocktail hour footage of this wedding! The theme of the hour was "County Fair" complete with cotton candy, carnival games and a fruit stand. Just wait until you see how beautifully executed it was. The whole video is gorgeous, but if you want to get straight to the cocktail hour it's a little less than half-way.

Check it out HERE

Good night!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

String Quartet Tribute to Peter Gabriel - In Your Eyes

Marc Cohn - True Companion

So Romantic!

Eva Cassidy Fields Of Gold @ Blues Alley 1996

Two Birds, One Song

As I pour over the books, I must have music playing. Normally I play classical movie scores because they have varying tempos and no words. Today I switched to Jazz, you know, to add some excitement to my studies! I either listen to my iTunes classical list, or tune in to AOL Radio. Every so often a song will come on, and I'll have to write down the name because as I listen, I begin to hear the song playing at a wedding....
Image By: Apertura

DF and I do not have "a song" and we have varying tastes in music, but there is some common ground to play around with. I'd really like to have a song that no one would expect. While we are pretty good at shakin' our booties to r&b/rap/pop music, I don't think we've ever even slow danced an entire song without bursting into laughter because we have no idea what we are doing! Dance lessons anyone?

Here are my recent additions to our possibilities:

Nat King Cole: Let There Be Love
the lyrics are pretty cutesy, but I like the jazzy feel and that there is somewhat of a tempo

The Holiday: Film Score by Hans Zimmer: I love this entire soundtrack and would love to implement it into our day somehow. My absolute favorite track is "Gumption"
The song in the closing scene is also a favorite,
Aretha Franklin: You Send Me (don't picture dancing to it, but definitely want it played at some point).

Marc Cohen: True Companion
I heard this months ago and couldn't get over it. I think it is so, so romantic and very fitting for us. But it is realllly slow!

Barry White: Can't get enough of your love.
This was allllways the song I pictured dancing to and I have no idea why. I've thought about it for so long, that I kind of want something different now, like it's all worn out!

George Strait: Carried Away
This was another song that I have always considered. I am a die hard, born and raised country fan, but the fiance is definitely not. So it's a no.
Eva Cassidy: Fields of Gold
Gorgeous rendition of the Sting classic. It is breathtaking, not so obvious and sllooow.

Patti Griffin: Heavenly Day
This song makes me cry everytime. But I'm afraid it's too predictable.

Peter Gabriel: In Your Eyes
Love everything about this song.

My newest obsession is the Vitamin String Quartet, their work is unbelievable. They do a great "In Your Eyes" tribute that I reallly want. Whatever song we choose, I'd love to have an instrumental (hopefully live) version played as I walk down the aisle or as our recessional.
Would love to hear some unique, dance-able suggestions!