December 27, 2008

A guide to gracious living...

My darling Santa gave me a wonderful Christmas this year involving fun presents and an only slightly awkward day with the future in laws. Oh, and a stomach bug, but I think I provided that one. It took down at least 10 people that I know of. Darn kidlets and their germs! Of the viral causalities were my parents so I haven't even seen them yet, their presents are still under the tree.

One of my most wonderful gifts is an update of something I already have. I have a slight obsession with old etiquette books and marital guidance books. In my collection is Amy Vanderbilt's Complete Book of Etiquette from the 1950's. I've actually been using it along with Miss Manners on Painfully Proper Weddings for all my wedding planning etiquette questions. Santa brought me the 50th Anniversary Edition of the Amy Vanderbilt Complete Book of Etiquette(!!!). I'm so excited that I can now use a little more updated information for my oh so traditional Big Fat Lesbian Wedding (as D has so kindly dubbed it). I wonder what Amy Vanderbilt would think.

Also, I finished designing my invites. They turned out far better than I could have imagined. Now we just have to finalize the details so we can get started on the slightly labor intensive process of actually making the invites. Just a peek:

December 24, 2008

Wedding Nightmares

I've now officially had two wedding related nightmares and I still have 11 months. Last night's was so cliche. I was having an 11am wedding (which I'm not) and it was 10:45 and I wasn't even close to dressed. I didn't have the baskets or leaves for the flower boys and I apparently had bridesmaid crashers. There were two random girls who decided they were to be bridesmaids instead of D's sisters. In my dream I kept telling everyone that that wedding would start just a few minutes late. Oh, and I kept getting lost and was driving around in circles trying to get to the venue. Every time I'd get going I'd realized I'd forgotten one more thing and I'd have to stop.

In the first dream, I hated my dress. It was the same color as the one I've picked out but the similarities stopped there. It was woven and thick and had a high collar and long sleeves. In my dream I was trying to keep it clean so I could return it just to realize it was getting dirty and there were pulls in the thread.

There are two major similarities in the dreams:
1. In both dreams it was like I was going to have a second wedding. I wanted to keep the dress clean so I could return it and wear the good one for the next wedding and in the second dream I kept thinking everything would run more smoothly the next time round. It must be the budding event planner poking through my subconscious.
2. In neither dream were the issues about D and whether I want to marry her it was all about the event and all the little things that could go wrong.

December 14, 2008

Venue Shmenue

Trying to find a wedding venue has me wanting to shoot myself in the foot and call the whole thing off. Perhaps the internet isn't the best place to stumble upon that diamond in the rough. I can't seem to find any outdoor wedding venue within 50 miles of Austin that costs less than $3,500 and also includes a ton of random fees that would surely knock that up to $5,000. And they all look canned. Perhaps I'm unconventional but the thought of getting married somewhere that's perfectly manicured and covered top to bottom in twinkling lights and dew glistening flowers makes me ill. The last thing I want is for people to worry that they're under dressed or the kids to be bored beyond recognition (not to mention the adults!).

The truth is, however, that I think I've found the perfect place already. It's this private campsite in Driftwood, TX by the Salt Lick. We drove out Saturday so I could show it to D (I'd been there once before for a wedding reception) and she immediately said it was too rustic. But then followed up that she just wasn't sold on it yet. There's huge sprawling oaks everywhere and big stone picnic tables and the two pavilions are built with cedar trunks and tin roofs. I do acknowledge that the place is pretty monochromatic between the brown leaves, brown limestone, brown ground etc but I think we could easily fix that.

She wants to keep looking so I've been digging through the internet for that one place that doesn't look too made up and cost more than my first year of college and I can't seem to find it. I really think this place is it. I just have a little more convincing to do.

This is it, think I can make it work?

December 8, 2008

wedding porn

I want this invitation. I will never have this invitation. As lovely as this may be, I don't have the budget to spend $300 on invitations that will go up on people's fridges until a month after the wedding then go in a drawer somewhere or the trash. But even so...they're soooo pretty.

(Invitations found here)

ch ch ch changes

So it's been a week and we've already decided that a two-year engagement is absurd. The whole idea behind waiting was to pay of debt and buy a house. Well, I highly doubt we'll be able to buy the house we want in a year so I think we'll just be happy renters for a few more years. This means wedding!

As usually happens, this decision was made at 10:30 last night before what should have been a very early Monday morning. We then sat up until midnight talking about guest lists and officiants. I began my frantic search for something to write on because I just absolutely have to make lists - it's time to procure some sort of wedding notebook where I can make silly drawings and lists galore. Otherwise I'll end up with scraps of paper all over the place. In theory, I'd love to transcribe much of my brainstorming and note taking here - but I don't want to give up all my secrets.

We're setting a very slim budget (somewhere in the $3,000-$5,000 range, ideally less) and planning to do as much of the work ourselves as we can. I have an amazing and talented best friend who will be doing the photography at the wedding as well as engagement portraits and another dear friend who actually asked if she could shoot my bridal portraits (who would turn that down?). Due to my dear best friends success in the wedding photography world we had to set our date early to make sure she's available not only to shoot the wedding but to be there to hold my hand.

Now my mind is completely swimming in wedding plans:
The wedding will be a casual-ish, outdoor party in November. Decorations will be minimal. The colors will be autumn-ey and we'll use as much nature as we can, fall leaves and pumpkins and we'll raid the after Christmas sales for lights. We want to make our own invitations and found an inexpensive website to make save the date magnets -overnight prints. I intend to commission friends to make cupcakes and help with set up and clean up. I picked out my dress months ago (yes, I'm that girl) and we finally figured out last night what D might wear.

The one thing we have no real idea about yet is the ceremony. It will be purely a 'commitment ceremony' of sorts (though we both hate that phrase), seeing as we have no legal or religious rights to marry. In a sense we have absolute freedom to tailor our ceremony to us as we aren't bound by ordination. It will be quite an exercise in figuring out what part of our love and relationship we want to convey to our friends and family. I look forward to it, but in some small ways envy those who have it all spelled out for them.