Friday, January 29, 2010

the bridal chronicles: chapter 2

Check these out.
I posted them on facebook, but wanted my blog friends to see them.

I might have told you, we're having red velvet cupcakes for my bride's cake. I didn't think I wanted a topper. I don't love the old school bride and groom toppers, I also didn't really like monogrammed toppers or flowers. So, we had decided to forgo the topper.

I saw these on some blogs some time ago. Then I forgot about them until the other night. I think they're "squeal worthy cute."

I ordered these unpainted ones, so I can paint them to look exactly like us. Brandon's going to be wearing a khaki suit (hopefully, as long as we can find one) and I think I want to make some wedding crowns for the dolls to wear. Click here to learn the history of the crowns in an Orthodox wedding.

The only challenge? How to represent the over one foot height difference between me and my tall man. ;~)

Other wedding details: I had an idea yesterday. Since we love Southern culture and Southern writers, I was trying to think of a way to further incorporate this love into our wedding reception. I began last night typing up some quotes by Southern authors. I also want to include some quotes from my very favorite "Steel Magnolias." I believe it's a Southern masterpiece. (Get ready my dear bridesmaid entourage, we're having a S.M. watch party before the wedding!)

Truvy: "How about some iced tea? It's the house wine of the South."

I'm going to post that quote on the sweet tea table.

We're eating catfish and having red velvet cake. I'm serious about this love of all things Southern. I do not mess around!

I alluded to my favors. If you're invited you should get pretty excited about them. Since today's a snow day I'm going to start working on them a bit. I'll tell you all about them as soon as I finish some.

I'm also going to start working on our wedding programs.

Do I hope to be productive today? Yes.
Will I actually be productive? Maybe.

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

the bridal chronicles: chapter 1

Welcome to Bridal Land. Here in Bridal Land we wear pretty, sparkly rings and think about important things, such as: table linens, centerpieces, bouquets, and rice alternatives for the send-off (does anyone have any good ideas? i definitely won't do rice, don't love birdseed, but hate, hate, HATE bubbles.)

So far, things have been in the plan/discuss/imagine phase of the planning. One of my very first royal actions here in Bridal Land (where, naturally, every bride is ALSO a princess) was to set up my bridal registries.

I feel like I have an advantage over most every other bride. I knew exactly what I needed for our home. As a perk of my profession I have had a chance to try out almost every imaginable kitchen tool. I knew exactly which I liked and didn't like. I think most brides are a little overwhelmed. I felt like I had an advantage.

I have registered at Babcock Gifts, Macy's, and Target. They were all very fun and exciting. My mom helped me out by going with me to Babcock. She had some very nice practical advice. For the Target registry I handed the scanner gun over to Brandon who was underwhelmed by the process.

Things have really started to come together. My mom and I got together on the phone on Thursday night and started doing some planning. Friday morning we went to a certain bridal store, which shall remain nameless. The dresses were all tacky. Seriously tacky. (Which, you all know, as a southern lady "tacky" is worse than any other insult.) The David's Bridal dresses were tacky. (Did I just say the name of the store? Oops.)

As many of you from my church know, our priest requires that all brides wear gowns with sleeves. This is fine with me. I try to be very modest in church anyway. Most of the women in our parish don't bare their arms in church. But, there are very few options for modest brides. PS- If you google "modest bridal gowns" you'll probably find plenty of Mormon bridal websites.

After leaving Tacky Bridal we went to the fabric store to look for some things. In the process we looked at some gown patterns. And then... like in a dream... I found it. IT! My dress! Yes, angels sang.

It's a Vogue Bridal pattern. And it's seriously beautiful. It has sleeves. Yay. The bodice is made of lace, so this gives me a chance to use the fabulous lace that belonged to my grandmother. It's going to be really great.

I can't wait for you to see it. I've shown it to several people already, I'm not too secretive. Just ask me if you'd like to see it. I don't want to post it on the blog.

I also found this pattern for my bridesmaids' dresses.

On Saturday my bridesmaids came over for a light brunch and measurements. We had such a great time. How often do you get to have all your favorite people over to hang out for a few hours?

Afterward, my mom and I went to Premier Fabric to purchase loads of fabric. We're making these really neat cloth flowers for the bouquets. We also got some fabric for some other wedding projects. Then, we went to the craft store for more things. This is going to be a very D.I.Y. wedding!

Here's a list of what we have on the agenda so far:
  1. Mom is making all the flowers for the bouquets, boutonnieres, mothers', and honorary bridesmaid's flowers to wear.
  2. For our guest book our guests will sign fabric squares. Then, at some point after the wedding, my mom is going to sew them into a quilt.
  3. We're making my bridesmaid's jewelry.
  4. We're hand-making the invitations, programs, thank you notes etc. They should also be really neat.
  5. We're making (with the help of our sweet friend Marjo) all the table decor for the reception.
  6. I'll be making my aunt's recipe for bourbon pecan pie for Brandon's groom's cake.
  7. I'll be making the favors. I really can't wait to show them to you. I think you'll love them!
  8. Mom is making most of the bridesmaid gifts.
  9. Mom is making the bridesmaids', junior bridesmaids', and icon bearer's dresses.
  10. Oh, and she'll be whipping up a little white number for me...
Seeing it listed like this doesn't seem like as much as it is. But believe me, it's completely overwhelming... plus, I'm sure I left something out.

This is how we do things in Bridal Land. The regular non-bride Caitlyn will be back after May 2.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

believe it or not.

I just clicked the button on the top right of the blog that says "New Post." I almost forgot where it was located. Sorry.

Here's the root of the reason why I hadn't written: (trust me, you're going to think it's ridiculous.)

I promised you all an explanation of how we got engaged. The more I thought about it, the more I got nervous. It's weird. I feel like the way we got engaged was so personal. As excited as I was about everything that was happening, it freaked me out a bit to talk about the details in front of people. We've never been one of those publicly affectionate couples. (Trust me we're very much in love, no need to worry.) So, I kept putting off my follow up post. I remember telling someone "doesn't anyone else think it's awkward to tell people how your boyfriend said he loves you and wants to spend the rest of his life with you?" Other people don't get it. Sorry, I'm not usually quiet (much to my detriment) but this is one thing I feel weird about posting for the world to see.

Here's what you need to know:
1. We got engaged on November 25. At midnight.
2. It was the feast day of my patron Saint, Saint Catherine.
3. It was also the day before my favorite secular holiday, Thanksgiving. It provided the perfect ring showing opportunity.
4. It was the perfect proposal, and caught me completely off guard! (I had a hunch it was coming soon... but assumed he would do it on Thanksgiving.)
5. If you wish to know any further details, I'd love to share them with you. In person.

For St. Catherine's feast there was a liturgy the following morning. Our parish sang "Many Years" to us. So sweet, I can't think of a better group of people to share in the excitement!

Now for the OTHER details: (I don't know if I have male readers, but this is a fine time for you to tune out.)
1. We're getting married on Sunday May 2, 2010. (Yes, I am aware that this is less than 4 months away.)
2. The wedding colors: olive green and pale pink. Anyone who knows me knows I ADORE pink and green.
3. My mom and aunt are making my dress. How cool is that?
4. We're not having a wedding cake. Instead, we're having red velvet cupcakes (for me) and bourbon pecan pie (for Brandon.) We aren't really white cake people.
5. Yes, I am wearing my ring on my right hand. It's a very old Christian tradition. I'll have to write more about it someday. No, I won't move it to my left hand after the wedding.
6. Topics such as the above mentioned have consumed my thoughts ever since November 25.

The holidays were a busy busy blur. I don't have very many pictures because my camera is currently messing up on a pretty regular basis.

It was definitely fun to be engaged through the holidays!

Thanksgiving was fun. I can't believe how much I ate.

Then, Christmas: After being awake until 3 am after the Liturgy. I finally got a few hours rest. Just in time for the day FULL of family celebrations.

I got some really cool Christmas presents. My mom handmade so many really cool things. (I'll have to show you the luggage tags she made for me.) And my parents also gave me a Williams-Sonoma gift card. Can we say heaven? Brandon's parents gave me (a very long coveted) Le Cruset dutch oven! Is it weird that it made me cry when I opened it? Brandon gave me several gifts including a stocking from my friend (and goddaughter Lillian's mom) Beauvais' Etsy. I also ordered him one as soon as I found out. Now we have a sweet matching set of stockings. (My stocking has sequins, and Brandon's does not. He's not much for sparkly things.)

You can see her Etsy shop here, it's called BaeBae & LuLu short for Beauvais and her sister's name Llewellyn. They have so much fun stuff. I love a good appliqué, so their products are right up my alley!

Brandon gave me some really delicious coffee from the "All Merciful Savior" Monastery. It was delicious. He also gave me the "Glee" soundtrack. Don't hate. I love that show.

For my big present he gave me something that couldn't be wrapped. He gave me three photo clues to figure it out.

1. The Swedish Chef (from the Muppets.)
2. Kelly Rippa and
3. Prince Charles...

Needless to say I was baffled for a few seconds but then got it:
1. Chef (represented by the Swedish Chef)
2. Kelly (represented by Ms. Rippa)
3. English (represented by Prince Charles, get it, he's English)

Chef Kelly English is the executive chef at Restaurant Iris. Yep, we're big enough food geeks that I understood those clues... and subsequently squealed! (Chef English is kind of a big deal, swoon.) I can't wait to redeem my present.

The day after Christmas was fun. We went out to Grand Junction to St. Paul Skete to celebrate a Liturgy for the Synaxis of the Theotokos. A handful of friends were there and we sang Christmas carols together afterward. I love spending time with Mother Nektaria, and always enjoy going to visit the Skete.

The twelve days of Christmas were a blur of fun celebrations and feasting!

For New Year's we had some friends over. I made the cupcakes below: (note the apron, it was from the cupcake themed present from Brandon's sister, Ashley, a cupcake cookbook, the apron, a cupcake scented candle, and a cupcake pan with reusable silicone cups. It was such a cool gift!)

They were chocolate with hand molded (by me) gum paste champagne bottles on top. I was really unhappy with the cupcakes, I used an organic mix. It was dry and not too tasty. Gimme a break, I spent too long molding the decorations! I should have either 1. (ideally) made them myself, or, 2. just used the Betty Crocker mix. Oh well, they were cute.

Are we all caught up? Merry Christmas (Christ is Born! Glorify Him!) Happy New Year! And blessed feast of the Theophany of Jesus!

Shew, I'm glad I got all of this posted before Valentine's day. I'm a failure as a blogger. Sorry I dropped off the face of the earth.

Love you, and miss you! I probably won't wait this long again. I have lots of wedding details to talk to you about, if you like that sort of thing.