Friday, October 29, 2010

My Study Buddy

It's been quiet around here lately. I know. I appreciate you guys sticking around even while things are kind of on a break. (But not like a Ross and Rachael kind of a break. Nice Friends reference huh?) I'm on a study break. A 30-hour a week study break.

Fortunately, I'm not studying alone. This is what my studying eventually leads to.

He's cute. Not terribly helpful or conducive to me actually being productive. But cute.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Quote of the Week

If you wait to do everything until you're sure it's right, you'll probably never do much of anything.

~ Win Borden

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Quote of the Week

It is not the ship so much as the skillful sailing that assures the prosperous voyage.

~George William Curtis

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Wedding Week Quote of the Week

It's not what we have in our life, but who we have in our life that counts.

~JM Laurence

Perfect timing for this quote. I found it back in August, but waited until now to post it. I think about this a lot, but especially around our anniversary. We're both so lucky to have our friends and family, we're truly blessed.

But even more than that, I'm awfully lucky to have the big guy. Love you!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Wedding Week- Day 4, Post 3

I'm trying to catch up a bit, can you tell? Note to self- next wedding week, have more posts ready in advance. I wasn't really interested in blogging on our actual anniversary. I was mostly interested in spending some quality time with the big guy.

Back to more of what we did for our wedding. We tried to make all of our decisions about the reception with our guests in mind.

Should we add the vegetarian option to the menu? Yes, and it was delicious!

Should we try to use the outdoor patio area if the weather allows? Yes, and the guys got a chance to enjoy some cigars and any of our guests who happened to be smokers had a much prettier place than the parking lot to look at while they were outside. And we found space for a second bar. It was a pretty big hit.

Should we let our guests submit suggestions for music? Yes, we set up a page on our wedding website that took suggestions and the DJ was able to accomodate almost all of them. He seemed pretty impressed with some of the suggestions. And on that note, he had something in his system that allowed him to record. At the end of the evening he gave us a CD that was our reception: all the songs, and even the speeches. Very cool.

But what about favors? Should we find a token or trinket that our guests could leave with? We didn't really see anything that we liked that we'd want to give out, and we figured we'd wind up with a lot of left overs. So we looked for alternate ways to spend that budget. Instead of favors, we made a donation to the local Humane Society with that money. It's a charity that I feel pretty strongly about, as you probably know by now, and it gave us a way to bring Loki into our big day.

We made signs with the table numbers and a little note to our guests so that they'd know what we'd decided. "In lieu of favors a donation has been made to the Humane Society to help dogs like our Loki find good homes."

Here are some of the pictures we used.

Just another way that we tried to make our wedding a little more personal. Plus if he'd been there in person, he would have eaten all the cake :-)

Wedding Week- Day 4, Post 2

One of my favorite things about our wedding, besides the wonderful man I married, was all of the paper stuff we had. For a lot of people, the paper stuff isn't a big deal, but being design-oriented at work, it was important to me that everything go together and look like a cohesive suite.

In order to do that, we branded our wedding. Everything we did had some version of this scroll pattern:

It was on our save the dates, our invitations, our programs, the cards at the tables, the seating chart, and our florist even found little ferns, finnial ferns is what she called them, to put in the arrangements and bouquets to further bring out our design.

I loved seeing everything come together, and I loved how many unexpected things tied in.

Another item we added was a map to our locations.

I put it together in Photoshop and we had it included with some text directions on one of the pages within our invitation. A little something to help everyone get around. Most of our guests were coming from somewhere other than Geneva, so we wanted to make it as easy as possible. I highlighted the three hotels where we had room blocks set up, the church, and the reception hall. I only did the main roads, just to keep it simple.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Wedding Week- Day 1

This is the first time I've really done the whole wedding week thing, but it seems like a lot of fun. Tomorrow is our second anniversary. It's hard to believe that it's been that long, these past two years have gone by really fast. We've gone through the excitement of promotions at work, buying our first home, the big guy getting recognized as sales rep of the year (shameless bragging), and me starting a graduate degree.

I'll warn you now, this is a long one.

But two years ago right about now, I was sitting in a room with some of the most important people in our world (some really important people weren't able to be there in person, but we knew that they were thinking about us, and they were part of the celebration in spirit). I was getting about a million kinds of antsy and excited and nervous about what the next day would bring. It was a whirlwind kind of a day. It all started at 5am that morning, with my dad and I getting ready to hop on the commuter train from La Fox to Chicago. An odd trip for the day before a wedding, but one that was very necessary. Here's the story if you haven't already heard it. (Or in my dad's case, lived through it with me.)

Wednesday before we got married, we packed up and got ready to drive from Indianapolis to Geneva. I had everything but one important piece- my passport. I had previously given the big guy a lot of grief for not putting his passport in a safe place. Apparently mine was so safe, I couldn't find it. Massive amounts of panic ensued, and we tore our apartment apart trying to find it. No luck. Which was totally scary, because we had an international honeymoon planned. I was not going to be able to go to Aruba sans passport.

So then we found out a very helpful piece of information. There are places across the country where passports are physically made. If you make an appointment and go in person with all the right forms, you can get your passport the same day. One of these places is the Federal Building in downtown Chicago.

So back to my story. We call on the way to my parents' house and make an appointment for me to go and get another passport. But I'm not quite as familiar with Chicago as I pretend to be, and I was nervous about going alone. Enter my dad.

Here's the thing about my dad- he's the best. I know a lot of people say that, but when I say it, it's actually true. He got up crazy early on a day when he should have been able to sleep in and relax, and he hopped on a commuter train like it was no big deal. Trust me, it was a really big deal. We walked from the train station to the Federal Building, navigated the gauntlet of security, and got in line with all the forms and paperwork.

Then I get up to the window, like the DMV, but with glass separating us from the federal employees. People were shouting, people were angry, and people were not happy. The guy behind the glass turns to me, already bored at 9:00am, and we have this conversation:

Federal Employee Guy: Do you have your forms?
Me: Yes, sir. I have them here. (pushes paperwork through the hole under the glass)
Fed: I have to ask this, is it absolutely necessary that you get a new passport today? What's so important that we have to rush it?
Me: (bottom lip begins to quiver, big sniff) Well, sir, you see... (cue uncontrollable sobbing) I'm getting married tomorrow (hiccup) and I lost my passport, but I didn't know it (hiccup) and my dad came out all this way with me (hiccup) and my fiance is the best man in the whole world  (hiccup, sniff) and he's planned this great honeymoon in Aruba (hiccup) and now I can't go with him (hiccup) and it's almost my wedding day ... I may have said more, but there were no dogs around to translate the high-pitched ball of emotions I had become.

At this point he reaches his hand under the glass, pats my hand, and says "Honey, you're passport will be done by noon."

Well at this point, I feel like this man has single-handedly saved my honeymoon. And if you think about it, he kinda did.

So I go back over to where my dad is waiting, and tell him the good news. He looks at his watch and says "It's only 9:15. What do you think about some breakfast and a walk around the city?"

That's what we did. We went to the Marriott on the river and had breakfast. We walked through Millennium Park and went through the exhibit hall of a technology conference. We walked, we talked, and I had the best unplanned morning a girl could have the day before her wedding. I didn't get a lot of time just me and Dad leading up to the wedding. Napkin colors and centerpieces just aren't his thing. This random morning was exactly what I needed. Unplanned though it was, I wouldn't have traded it for anything.

For the record- never found the original passport. Totally lost. I think our apartment ate it.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Quote of the Week

The art of being happy lies in the power of extracting happiness from common things.

~Henry Ward Beecher