Sunday, October 24, 2010

Hurry Up Already!!!

So, I just drafted a post on one of my favorite details from our wedding, and as I sifted through what little pictures we have from our friends and family I realized that we don't have any pictures of this detail.  Waiting for our pro pics is putting a serious cramp in my blogging style!  I know it has only been 3 weeks, but I want my professional pictures dammit!!!  So that post will just have to sit in draft form until my photographer gets a move on.

Speaking of which, I'm friends with our photographer on Facebook and yesterday she posted that she was hard at work editing a wedding and I got a little excited.  Please please please please please be our wedding!!!

How is it that I am actually less zen now that wedding planning is over?  Something's wrong with me!  LOL.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Wedding Day Weather

So, remember how in the days leading up to the wedding I was freaking out about the chance of rain?  The two days before the wedding it rained on and off at our house, which is only 40 or so minutes from our venue.  It was that crazy and unpredictable kind of rain, where it would rain huge drops for a couple of minutes then go away, then there would be thunder and lightening with no rain, then it would rain for a split second while it was bright and sunshiney out.  The day before the wedding we went to Lowe's and bought a ton of tarps just in case we needed them and just decided to move on with our lives.  There was nothing we could do about the rain and we had too much other stuff to deal with to worry about something we can't control.

When we got up the mountain on Friday, it was overcast and sprinkled on and off.  No bueno.  It was never heavy enough rain to make you go inside though, so I didn't let it get the best of me.

When I woke up on Saturday morning, there was the typical morning mountain fog.  But that cleared away to bright blue skies.  And it stayed that way all day long. I was so relieved that I kept exclaiming throughout the wedding "It didn't rain!!!"

Monday, October 18, 2010

Details Details: Cake Stand

Just like with the bar, we knew from the get-go that we wanted to do a cake / dessert buffet instead of a traditional tiered wedding cake.  I had always envisioned something a la . . .

(via Snippet & Ink)

. . . but the Mister had another vision.  One that actually made sense for the cake gazebo at our venue.*  The gazebo could only hold a small round table, so the mister decided he wanted to build a tree-esque cake stand.  Originally, we had grand plans to acutally make the cake stand look like a tree, but like many a grand plan before it, that plan got scrapped when things got down to the wire.  I'll just cut to the chase and let you see the final product.

(photo by my Father-in-Law!)

We had a local cake shop make the four cakes (which were unbelievably delicious, I might add) and my Mother-in-Law baked the cookies and brownies.  I grossly underestimated the amount of platters I needed to purchase for the cookies and brownies so they ended up keeping the cookies in the Tupperware.  Not ideal, but I didn't even notice it on our wedding day.  That's one of those things where you just end up having to say "oh well" and shrug it off.  People were so excited for my Mother-in-Law's famous peanut butter cookies with Hershey's Kisses that no one even cared about the Tupperware.

So back to the cake stand.  This was also a fairly simple project but time consuming because of all of the trial and error.  The structure of the stand is made from metal pipe fittings from Home Depot that the Mister screwed together to form the "trunk" and "branches."

Those are pipe fittings all over the floor.  The Mister spent forever and a day picking out what he thought he needed, and then we must have gone back 3 or 4 more times to return some things and buy some more.  Photo by yours truly.

We attached the pipe fittings to a large wooden base that we covered in spare purple fabric.  We then covered the fittings with clay to even out the surface and wrapped it in green ribbon.  The platters that the cakes sat on were actually lazy susans that we disassembled so they couldn't spin and then attached to the "branches" with screws. 

Sounds simple, but this project took a long time to complete, and we actually finished it two days before the wedding.  It probably would have been easier if we were following a set plan, but we were really just flying by the seat of our pants. 

And now, for a moment of sadness.  The day after the wedding, when we were packing up the lodge, we decided to throw it away.  It was heavy and took up a lot of space, and we couldn't think of a single reason why we would use it again.  So a little birdie convinced us to toss it, and to be honest I regret that decision a little.  Even though I'm sure we would have ended up tossing it at some point in the future, I could have at least got to the point where I didn't have so much of a sentimental attachment to it anymore.  Sigh.  You live, you learn. 

* Yes, our venue had a gazebo just for the cake.  It's a smart idea, really, when you've got a venue that's entirely outside and in the woods.  No one wants sap in their wedding cake. 

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Details Details: The Bar

While we are waiting for our pro pics to come (which may be a while), I am going to use this time to go back and fill you all in on the projects that I have yet to tell you about.  I was waiting to tell y'all about these projects until they were finished, but it turns out that most of them didn't get finished until a day or two before the wedding so there was just no time.  First up:  the bar!

Way back in the day I blogged about how we wanted a self-serve bar, but our venue did not allow glass beer bottles.  If we were serving beer, it had to be kegs or cans.  After much research and deliberation about our options, we decided to go balls to the wall and build a full on bar with a dual carbon dioxide tap system so no one would have to hand pump the kegs.  

So how do you build a bar?  Turns out it's not that difficult - it's just time and labor intensive.  The Mister designed the whole thing in his head.  He never drew out any plans or looked anything up online.  We went to Home Depot and bought some 2x4s, finish grade plywood and trim for the corners; ordered a CO2 tap system online; and finished it with some cherry wood stain and (the real key element for a classy looking bar) marine varnish.   Neither of us had ever heard of marine varnish until we asked someone at Home Depot what we should use on a bar top to keep it fully sealed from moisture.  Marine varnish is what is used on boats and  We both probably lost a few brain cells just being around this stuff, and we had to keep our garage door cracked open for about a week straight to get the smell out.  But it works and gave the bar a super high gloss finish.

I know, I know, you're thinking JUST SHOW US THE PICTURES ALREADY!!!  I could swear that took pictures of us building the bar, but I can't find them anywhere, so I just have the finished product.  I looked through our friends pictures that we have so far of our wedding too, and could only find one of the bar.  So here it is, sitting in our garage.

the front

the back

A close up of the taps and drip tray.  The grate cover for the drip tray flew out of the bar on the freeway on the way to the wedding.  Our friend made us a make-shift one cover the day of the wedding at his dad's sheet metal shop.  

And actually set up at the wedding.  Photo by our friend June.  You can see the make-shift cover, and that we served Bud Light and Blue Moon.

Okay, time for some words of advice.  First of all, we had one full sized keg and one pony keg and apparently dual tap systems don't like having two different sized kegs attached to it at the same time.  I was oblivious to this during the wedding, but I noticed that the pony keg of Blue Moon was gone really, really early and asked someone what was up.  They said that they couldn't get the Bud Light to come out until the Blue Moon was gone.  So moral of the story:  get same sized kegs.

Second word of advice - building a bar like this will NOT save you money.  According to our receipts, this bar cost us $575.90 to build.  But we were okay with the cost because we felt that the bar was one of the key elements in establishing the mood and look we wanted for our wedding.  By far, the tap system was the greatest expense.  That alone was about $340.  We are planning on selling it to recoup some of our expense, though it breaks my heart a little bit.  I'm attached to it at this point, so I'm hoping we can sell it to someone we know that way we can see it and use it again!  We've actually had several friends and family members say that they want it, so hopefully that works out.  If no one is willing to pay a good price for it, I'd rather keep it in our own backyard for all those keggers we throw (HA!).  

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

We're Back...and I've Been Tagged!

We're back from a blissful week on the Big Island!  We got back home late Sunday night and pre-planned to take Monday off from work to recuperate.  Actually, the Mister already had it off because it was Columbus Day.  About half way through the day we both realized a second recuperation day was in order so we both called out today.  

I'll fill y'all in on the details of our honeymoon later, but I'll tell you the best part now:  SLEEP!!!  I slept for at least 9 hours each night and one night I actually slept for 10 1/2 hours.  I normally am an 8 hours and then I'm awake kind of person.  I think I was able to sleep so well on our honeymoon because it was the first time I've been able to really relax in a very, very long time.

Jacin over at She Said Yes! tagged me with some fun questions to answer.  I'm normally horrible about doing things like this.  But since I took today off from work and am still in relaxation mode this sounds like fun.  So here goes nothing!

1. what was the last movie you watched?

Dinner for Schmucks on the plan ride from Honolulu to LAX.  It was not very good, and not at all what I expected, but anything that helps 2 hours of a 5 hour plane ride go by faster is great in my book.

2. what's your favorite food?

Tough one!  I'd probably have to say Tiramisu.  I don't eat it very often, but if it's on the dessert menu there's no question that is what I am ordering.  But I love so many other foods.  This question would be easier if it was what's your least favorite food.  That's an easy one... HARD BOILED EGGS!!! Ewwww.

3. what is your happiest memory (not wedding-related) :)

Most of my happy memories revolve around hanging out at my maternal grandparent's house in Massachusetts as a kid.  My mom has 10 brothers and sisters so the house was always full of family and fun times.  Plus, they had a Sega Genesis and an in-ground swimming pool with a slide and a diving board.  :)

4. what is your favorite song?

I have a confession:  I'm not a music person.  I hardly ever download music to my iPod.  I'm content with my old music and just listening to the radio.  But I love me some Pearl Jam, and I'd have to say that Pearl Jam's Betterman is one of my all time favorite songs.

5. if you could move anywhere in the world where would it be?

Right now, we're talking about moving to Hawaii.  :)  I moved a lot as a kid so moving is not very appealing to me.  But I'd leave Southern California in a hot minute for some place a little cooler (but not with a full on winter...been there done that!) and with less people.  Where that is, I don't know.  It would be hard to leave our friends and family behind though.  Making new friends sucks.

6. what is the last book you read?

The Wedding Ceremony Planner.  It was a great resource for helping me write our ceremony!

7. what's on the wallpaper on your computer desktop?

It rotates throughout the day with different scenery of America.  It came with Windows 7 and is pretty, what can I say??? LOL.  

8. what is your favorite thing to do on a rainy day?

Just lounging around in my sweats watching trash TV.  When it's nice out I end up feeling guilty if I do this unless I'm sick or have some other valid excuse.  

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Hello from the other side!

At 4:30 p.m. yesterday afternoon, I married my best friend.  The wedding was more wonderful and beautiful than I had even imagined.  I don't even have words to really describe how I feel about the wedding.  But what excites me the most is that I was able to really absorb it all.  So many brides say that their wedding day was a blur, but mine wasn't.  I remember every little bit.  So I know that I will be able to find those words to describe it for all of you in my recaps.  

So now we are resting up before we head out for our honeymoon!  We're leaving bright and early for Kona, Hawaii for a blissful week of much needed relaxation.  See you on the flip side!

Friday, October 1, 2010

The Time Has Come

It's the day before our wedding.  I can hardly believe it.  I have a nail appointment in 2 hours, and after that I'm on a strict schedule so we can be on the road to our venue by 3 p.m.  I will not have internet at the Lodge, except on my trusty Blackberry, so this is my last chance to tell all of you wonderful ladies how great it has been to share my wedding planning experience with you.  I himmed and hawwed about whether I wanted to start a wedding blog because I wasn't sure I would have the commitment to blog regularly.  But I soon realized that there are no rules when it comes to blogging and if I don't post it's not like someone comes and takes my blog away from me.  I know I haven't been as prolific as many wedding bloggers out there, but to each there own, right?  I did what felt right for me.

So thank you.  Thank you for your feedback, thank you for listening, thank you for being a friend (Ha!  Had to throw in a Golden Girl's reference.)

So this is it.  I'm not nervous about anything.  Though I am worried about the 30% chance of rain on our wedding day.  And even then I'm not that worried about it, and I'm finding the silver lining.  Scattered thunderstorms make for beautiful skies and an opportunity for fantastic pictures, right?  Plus, there was a double rainbow over my house yesterday, so I'm taking that as a sign God is smiling down on us.