Tag Archives: DIY

Oh, Nights — You have stolen my life.

I’ve been on 3rd shift coming up on 3 weeks now, so my apologies for not updating so often — I can’t wait to have my afternoons back to work on some wedding details! I feel as though I have been depriving the wedding details of any and all of my attention … this weekend I’ll be sure to post some pictures [a lot]. Z. is gone to Virginia to visit his best friend, so Sergeant and I will have plenty of time to sunbathe and work on some DIY projects.

Although I haven’t been working on the details myself, there are definitely some people that I have found and have put to work. Let me tell you all once AGAIN, Etsy.com is my save haven, my saving grace … quite possibly my wedding planner. I have found the most amazing wedding “suppliers” (if you will), and in the process have purchased a couple of gems for myself. I have outstanding women working on personalized wedding invitations, cake/cupcake stands for the cake/sweets tables, and a gazillion empty picture frames that will be painted and antiqued to match my color scheme for the wedding. I also stumbled across a Tiffany-blue hair comb composed of crystals, old lace and satin — I’m looking for a dress that compliments it well to wear to the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.

My sister/MOH stumbled across a million more gems at the antique store in Cottonwood — I’ve got to make my way there ASAP! There are DOORS (AAHHHHHH!!!!!!!), windows, old bread boxes, furniture, and the list goes on and on. I’ve posted a few of my favorites below: no one get any ideas.

Not too sure what I could use this for, but I love it.

These look a little short - I wish they were tall enough to be Bride and Groom chairs.

E

DOORS!!! Enough said.

WINDOWS!!!

Maybe I could paint this yellow?

I do have a rather important update — haha, mainly for M., one of my bridesmaids. Z. and I have officially chosen our officiant (RIGHT?!?!?!?!?!?!) :]. Some of you may remember the update: the decision to choose to have my priest from home perform the ceremony, a Justice of the Peace, or a friend of mine from Bakersfield that I met at Dreyer’s who actually just left the company to be a Preacher at his very own church. S. has officially offered, and I have graciously accepted; he will be the most perfect officiant, keeping the mood light and laid-back, while still meaningful and special and loving. I just can’t hold it in though — I’m stoked.

Things are slowly falling into place. Once Z. and I have another trip planned to AZ we’ll be booking tastings with caterers, the bakery and we’ll most likely meet with the florist (maybe). Even though I haven’t been working on this too terribly much, I’m pretty relaxed.

Simply enjoying the engagement — advice I’ve received from many brides. Well, that and practicing my new signature.

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DIY Projects

And the DIY projects begin.

I am going to try my best to avoid flower centerpieces at all costs – I’ve never been too into flowers anyway, and usually would request chocolate from a boyfriend. I just can’t ever seem to justify spending so much money on something that dies rather quickly. Friends have been saving baby food jars and I have been soaking the labels off and will be wrapping them in lace and ribbon and twine this weekend to see if it will be perfect for holding tealights. Hopefully it doesn’t look too cheesy … :]

I’ve bookmarked so many websites and saved so many pictures of DIY projects that I want to try and replicate, so many that I think it’s a little much. Don’t get me wrong – I’d love to have an excuse for my creativity because my Bako friends know how crazy I get (wine bottles, garden signs?!? Really?!?).

But it’s an outlet, and what better time to really make something your own. And what better time for YOU to give some input – any DIY projects that you’ve seen that are new and fresh?? I need some guidance!!

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The Unknown — The Z.

The relationship between Z. and I has been quite the mystery to some of you due to my subtle-ness and ways of not advertising all details so blatantly. Well, here is a post that will tell all — including the utmost perfect proposal.

I met Z. in April/May of 2007; he was slated to be my Co-Community Assistant in PV West at Arizona State University. I have never been bashful when it comes to giving hugs, so that’s what he got instead of a formal hand shake. He had come to the building to check out the room and to see what he was getting himself into, when in all reality he had no idea. I was one of the CAs that went all out — I absolutely, without a doubt, and PROUDLY loved being a Community Assistant. I was convinced that I could make this kid love it just as much.

The year went by and Z. and I had built a strong friendship — from the baseball-themed posters and door decs, to our playing of Guitar Hero on his mini TV and wrapping him in TP for Halloween. I believed that I could talk to him about anything and really valued our friendship. At the time, I was in a committed relationship, so nothing romantic came up between the two of us.

A famous door dec.

The next year I was placed in a residence hall on a different side of campus for yr. 2008-2009 and we split. Unfortunately, so did our friendship. We would try to schedule lunch at the one and only Manzy Dining Hall or the Student Union, but we were not hanging out as much or seeing too much of each other; the friendship dissolved to the point where we were acquaintances.

By December I had been given a couple of job offers and was in the midst of trying to decide where my calling was. I had been attending church with my father a little more than usual and I remember one Sunday rather clearly. I had just received the Holy Communion and had gone back to my pew and knelt down to pray, something that I did and still do every single day, even if I’m not attending church as much as I would like. I wasn’t praying for myself or anyone in particular, rather, I was speaking with God as if he were my best friend from grade school. And I realized at that moment that leaving Arizona was going to be one of the hardest things I would ever do — leaving my friends and family and loved ones and my life at ASU, I was leaving everything I knew. And I admitted then that there were some valuable relationships (yes, plural) that I let go by the wayside, that I didn’t focus on as much as I would have liked, and that I would have one more semester to correct that. And that’s what I did.

One relationship being my friendship with Z. I had let a 10 minute walk weaken our friendship, and that was unacceptable. Z. and I started hanging out more often and he sat me down one night and explicitly told me that all he ever wanted for me was happiness. There was no romanticism, no motives — just pure care for an individual.

And from there, the relationship became more than just a friendship. Next came first date, first kiss, graduation, etc. etc; all the goofy, newness of relationships took hold and never let go. He left shortly after this to go back to Virginia for the summer of 2009, and I couldn’t let that be the last time I saw him before I packed two cars and moved to California (yes, I only took two cars worth of crap to CA). I planned a week-long trip to Virginia to see him and meet his mother and then headed right back, only to turn around 2 or 3 days later and move. I wanted to move on my own and prove to myself that I could survive here all by my lonesome, and I did just that. Luckily, Z. was able to plan a few trips to CA during the summer and he was graduating in December. We made it extremely clear to each other that there should be no stress and expectations of our long-distance relationship, for we didn’t know what the future held for us.

August 2009 – December 2009 was probably one of the hardest times for me, Z., and our relationship. The distance put us to the test, along with other personal issues, and although we struggled and sometimes thought we wouldn’t make it, we endured. I can honestly say, and Z. would agree, that those months will hopefully be the worst that we have to deal with, because they were the worst. We are so much stronger because of them, we have learned so much about one another and were forced to do it with 500 miles separating us and in only 5 months. We were forced to grow up and mature in our relationship, but it has all been worth the while. And it has all worked out beautifully.

Mid-December 2009 Z. moved out to Bakersfield to live with me, promising that though he didn’t know what he wanted to do professionally, that he would work and strive to support me and our relationship in any way possible. His kind heart and giving nature has led him to realize that his calling is to help people, in any way. And for that I admire him. Even with as young as he is and the times he’s been doubted, he has succeeded and grown and I am so honored that he has chosen to marry me.

Haha, so NOW what you all have been waiting for … the proposal. As you can probably tell, we are not a flashy couple whatsoever, so Z. knew that popping the question on the Big Screen at Dodger’s Stadium would not be my idea of the perfect proposal (no offense … but I really don’t like the Dodgers :] ).

I am recently a new mother of a Yorkie Terrier, Sergeant.

My little boy, Sergeant.

On May 14th after work, Z. had suggested that we take Sergeant to a park that he had spotted on his way to work. Of course, I didn’t think twice about it — bright, sunny day in California at a park? Nothing could be better. We loaded the car with nothing but ourselves and a leash and went and just walked around. I laid in the grass with the puppy, constantly grabbing twigs and clumps of dirt out of his mouth. I stood up and Z. came over and wrapped his arms around me rather tightly, and I just stood there and soaked in the moment, quickly realizing how heavily he was breathing. I asked, and I quote: “Why are you breathing like a creeper?”. The laughter quickly consumed the both of us, and he shakily reached into his pocket, pulling out something wrapped in a small piece of cloth, and got down on one knee (yes, don’t worry … I haven’t let go of the leash). And Z. asked:

I was actually kinda wondering if you might be into the idea of marrying me?“, showing me the most simple and perfect engagement ring — the ring that I’ve always wanted — solely symbolizing how unique and simple and clean and perfect our relationship is and always will be: a solitaire round-cut diamond perched on a white gold band.

I always thought that I’d bawl hysterically when proposed to, but a sense of calmness and comfort overwhelmed me. I didn’t hear the puppy, the cars driving by on the highway, nothing. There was a man sitting on a picnic table reading a book who didn’t look up, wasn’t disturbed, and that was it. I said of course and hugged him ever so tightly, not even the slightest bit worried about fitting the ring on my tiny finger (ring size of 4.25, and my infatuation with how sparkly the ring is started once we were in the car). It was all about me and Z. in that moment, committing our lives in front of no one but the Lord, to each other for, ever.

My most perfect ring.

Through all the hustle and bustle of 1 1/2 weeks of wedding planning, I have reminded myself and Z. that this is about us, celebrating our relationship and what is to come. And although I am going nuts and blogging every day and already collecting decorations, there is a sense of true love at home and a sense of sanity in the fact that ultimately, if all my DIY projects don’t pull through and it rains and we are outside and the bridesmaids look like jelly beans and all that turns out are gorgeous photographs (oh, you just wait for that post), then that celebration with our family and closest friends has been a success.

With that said — ahhhhh, breathe — Z. has humbled me and made me realize what really matters in a relationship, thus my lack of advertisement (esp. on Facebook because Z. has a particular vendetta against it :] ).

But here is the long-winded version, the love story, and the soon-to-be most perfectly imperfect wedding.

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I’m Dreamin’ BIG.

Z. did not care much for the coral, as I suspected — I even tried to explain that it would add dimension and pop and that it was NOT pink, but it just didn’t click. I felt the urge to then make a grey, yellow, and peach inspiration board. Yes, even after I swore it off like a bad habit. Here is what I have come up with:

Oh, Peach.

I doubt it will still catch, but at least it gave me something to do on this fine Saturday. I think I may sneak some peach flowers into the girl’s bouquets, so we’ll see. :]

As most of you who have built these inspiration boards know, it involves patience, especially thumbing through thousands … literally thousands, of photos and clips that may just fit your board just right (I hate to admit, but I was on Project Wedding last night searching, and I literally searched through all 7000+ images, off and on probably between the hours of 6pm and 11pm). I mean, I truly flip through every picture, never jumping pages, because there is no way I would chance skipping a whirlwind of yellow with some great ideas. As you can imagine, with as much WebSurfing I have done in the last 7 days, I’ve seen probably close to 20,000 images that have all been inspirational — my Mac desktop is flooded with saved pictures, and same goes for my work laptop. I’m going to pray that the farm venue (The Farm at South Mountain) works out, because it truly lends itself the best to my ideas and theme, being low-key and focusing on the people that have traveled to celebrate my relationship with Z. With that said, I imagine that there will be a ceremony space outdoors that will need to be transformed into an intimate setting. I’ve found a handful of ideas that seem like they enclose the guests and break up the horizon, so I will share with you my thoughts and ideas. PLEASE, if you are familiar with any of these weddings or have used the same ideas yourself, SHARE SHARE SHARE! If I can’t find these pieces to purchase (at a Bride-Friendly cost 🙂 ), then I will be forced to turn it into a DIY project.

The Ultimate.

This is actually an outdoor setting that the bride’s mother built when the couple chose to have their wedding in her backyard. It was yet more inspiration to me, hence why it is my header for this blog (only cropped and slightly stretched). It is BRILLIANT, stunning … and now I am on the search for broken and trashed doors and windows to put my own twist on this. There is another photograph that I had found that will be more of what I am looking for — the couple hinged together three or four doors, accordion-style, and stood them up front to be a backdrop for the ceremony. It was creative and fun and (hopefully) cheap, so if any of you know someone who is changing out their doors either in Bakersfield, CA or the greater Phoenix or Cottonwood areas, GRAB THE DOORS! They’ll probably just want to throw them away anyway … If they still have the windows in tact, I will (or you can, if you need to release some anger) bust them out. It would be AWESOME to be able to see some of the scenery through the door. Ahhhhh, where do people take their old doors????? Below are some examples:

Perfect example.

Old doors that are perfect, too.

Any pieces of furniture that are bright yellow — I may ask to borrow or even rent. The yellow dresser that served as an altar in the picture above stands out and would be a great find.

Perfect for a table at the reception, with some hidden goodies inside.

And last, but not least … there is one piece that I will search for high and low not only because it may be comfortable for my guests after an hour of dancin’, but because it would make for some great pictures of the bridal party, as well as me and my groom.

Exceptional.

It is the glue for all of my random ideas. I may have to print this picture out and actually paste it into my soon-to-be Wedding Planning Moleskine (the trusty notepad is dwindling and may not be sturdy enough or have enough pages to last 10 months). A  couch out in the middle of a farm screams UNIQUE and FUN and free. In other words, too perfect. Keep your eyes peeled!!

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Day 6

I have now been engaged for 6 days, and my head is already spinning from the blogs and venues and color palettes and potential DIY projects. I wish I could clone myself, solely so one of me could sit at home all day, every day, and plan this wedding as quickly as I did a friend’s a couple of years ago.

Stereotypical is my name: have been dreaming of the day that I would say “I Do” for years. I have DV-R’d the series Say Yes to the Dress even before I was engaged. I creep on Facebook profiles of people I don’t know if their profile picture is from a wedding (it takes some humility to say that). There is nothing more in the world that I want than a most perfect wedding with no flaws — but my problem is that I don’t trust anyone else with making any of my decisions, and I am indecisive myself.

So I will post some things that I have flagged and bookmarked to key you in a little on what I am thinking. My initial plan was a home-made day, nice and low-key with neutral tones on a bright, crisp spring day in the greater Phoenix area. My most favorite color in the world is mustard yellow (you should see my kitchen and my Williams-Sonoma apron), and what would compliment that more than a soft grey suit and some light khaki tones? Nothing, is hopefully your answer. Below is a picture that is a little more “done-up” than I am imagining, but it has the yellow (i’m aiming for a little darker) and grey tones.

I have many DIY-projects scribbled in my handy notepad that hasn’t left my side, but I’ll post about those in the future.

There are a few venue options that I am considering, and am trying to set appointments with for my visit next weekend. The Farm at South Mountain (http://www.thefarmatsouthmountain.com/) may have the ambiance that would most perfectly fit my vision, so I’m hoping to make a stop there next Saturday. If that doesn’t work out, there is another venue that has an extremely different vibe, MonOrchid in downtown Phoenix (http://www.monorchid.com/). It’s modern and chic, but I’m not 100% sure I could pull off DIY projects to match.

In terms of places that would be uber special for my fiance and I — it’s either Arizona State University (somewhere on campus or perhaps Tempe Beach Park or Tempe Center of the Arts) or Chase Field, the home to our beloved Diamondbacks. Unfortunately I’ve contacted them and they are not giving tours on Memorial Day weekend :(. But it is where Z.’s heart lies, until we exchange “I Do’s”. 😉 And it is also the site of our first date …

So as you may conclude, hours and hours of my future will be dedicated to one event that may last 6 (?!?!!?!?!??). Which venue do you like the best?


Any suggestions to spice up the color scheme??

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Evening of Day 6 (just for jill)

As the night lingers on and I become more and more inspired by the increasing view count on the dashboard, a text message enters @ stage right.

It’s Jill, of course. She’s requesting more blogging — ironically, right after I agreed with a friend that I need to balance my life and not let all this planning take over my thoughts and dreams.  I laughed.

I don’t really want to take my mind off of the idea: a (insert not-yet-chosen adjective) yellow and dark grey flood of pictures and DIY projects and suits and suspenders envelope me. I am so unbelievably excited and at the same time, the most stressed I have been for at least a year.

My trusty notepad is tucked tightly into my nude-toned purse, it’s permanent home until probably the wedding day. Every idea that comes to mind, every song that must be played, every ounce of inspiration gets jotted down or pseudo-sketched in hopes that I capture the ambiance it portrays.

A friend from school is in the midst of creating two inspiration boards for me — how adorable is she?!? She is one of the most creative writers and designers and I follow her blog rather religiously. Check her @ jetsetmeg.blogspot.com — I really cannot wait until she posts them. I’m honored to be featured  :]

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