Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wedding Chore Update

I'm hoping I can keep the productivity on this list going when football season starts.  I'll no longer have my Saturdays and starting next week I'll be working 40 hours instead of my usual 32.  I don't really have a lot of DIY items on this list so really it's just picking things out and shopping :-)  R has a few items on here that he has to make so I'm hoping he'll have some Sundays to devote to it.  I highlighted tasks for September and my accomplishments for August are in crossed off in purple.

Set a date

Book venue

Book photographer

Book Music and lighting

Decide on bridal party

Book caterer & bartender

Create wedding website

Register for shower

Book florist

Purchase wedding dress

Purchase bridal accessories

Rent linens

Take engagement pictures

Select bridesmaid dresses

Select groom & groomsmen attire – ties needed

Send bridesmaids ordering info for dresses

Book cake baker

wedding coordinator guidebook

Buy cake knife & server

Order save the dates

Send save the dates

Book officiant

Pre-marital counseling ßOctober

Order guest book

Finalize guest list

Obtain guests addresses for invitations

Order cake topper

Decide on videographer services

Hotel room blocks

Rent hotel rooms for March 22 and March 23

MOB & MOG dress shopping

Find wedding shoes

Find wedding jewelry

Book makeup artist & hair stylist

Reception menu tasting

Hair, nails, tan for bridal portraits

Take bridal portraits / hair trial – Scheduled for October 18th

1st dress fitting

Bridal portrait bouquet and finalize bouts with florist

Final dress fitting

Make ceremony programs

Practice Carolina shag

Write out escort cards

Find 10 glass milk vases

Pay venue for ceremony chair set up

Order invitations

Address invitations

Mail invitations

Book rehearsal dinner venue

Buy Rehearsal dress

Buy sparkler for send off

 Find hair accessories for FG

Decide on bridesmaids shoes

make table numbers

make cake stand

Buy groomsman gifts

Buy FG and RB gifts

Reader and coordinator gifts

Bridesmaids gifts

Bachelorette party outfits

Bachelorette party

Buy gifts for mothers

Bridal shower attire

Bridal shower

Shower thank you notes

Shop for wedding bands

Purchase wedding bands

Create wedding day timeline

Put together picture list for photographer

Buy drinking straws

Buy mason jars
Bridal makeup trial

DIY signs for reserved seating

Engagement photos framed for auxiliary table

Book a salon for day of wedding

Makeup for MOB

New passport

Decide on setup for cocktail table décor and purchase accessories

Escort card display and welcome sign

Purchase alcohol for reception

Get marriage license

Create signs for sparkler exit and favor

Book transportation from reception to hotel

Book honeymoon

Honeymoon outfits

Bridal luncheon invitations

Bridal luncheon favor

Decide who will return reception rentals

RD invitations - FMIL

RD groom's cake - FMIL

Final vendor payments

Music selections to band

Order thank you notes

Hair, nails, tan for wedding

Ring cleaning

Pack for honeymoon

Wedding announcement in News and Observer

Walk down the aisle & say I do!


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Belk Engagement Party

Mom and I attended an "Engagement Party" at a local Belk department store where R and I are registered.  Belk is hands down my favorite department store because they are everywhere in NC; unfortunately if you want a store that carries more designer names you have to go to Raleigh or Charlotte.  We received an invitiation via email on the Tuesday before the party but R was on call that weekend so I asked my mom to go - - - she had a blast!  Mom really hasn't had many opportunities yet to do any wedding chores, she has been super involved in all aspects of my dress and accessories but not much beyond that. 

When we arrived they had my bridal registery printed and gave me a scanning gun to make additional changes if I wanted and I entered a few of the sweepstakes they had available for prizes (nice prizes too, there were about a dozen to give away).  There were vendors there showing off their products - Cuisinart, Keurig, Nespresso, Clinique, and a glass etching artist.  There was a DJ and tons of snacks displayed on crystal and silver serving pieces from brands that Belk sells.  Oh and everyone received a gift bag as an awesome piece of swag.  Mine had mints, a cookie cutter and sugar cookie recipe, a pearl bracelet, $25 gift card, and a few samples of perfume and mascara.  I actually won one of the clinique giveaways and received a small gifts sack with several full size products.  My new favorite mascara:
Yessir my love affair with Covergirl Lash blast has ended.  I will be purchasing this mascara from now on...the brush seperates my lashes into a full fan.  Who knew I'd ever go back to a traditional brush?

If you are debating on what stores to visit for your bridal registry I'd definitely recommend Belk if you lucky enough to have one in your state.
The same weekend of the engagement party I had received the Bride and Groom Challenge with a recent order.  R and I had a blast with it!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Recent Purchases

I received an email this morning from Sephora that there was a new 500 beauty point perk for a Laura Mercier kit.  I needed to replenish my Two faced shadow insurance and my Nars Laguna Bronzer so I went ahead and purchased them so I could add this great perk to my cart.  I've not tried that many LM products so it's a good opportunity to get several samples.  As a special surprise for me, not only did I qualify for free shipping but I also had $19 in store credit where I returned something back in the spring and totally forgot about it.
On Sunday R and I visited the Winterville Watermelon festival.  We were bored and wanted something "different" to do....and I wanted a funnel cake.  I found a booth where a local craftsman had several woodworks for sale.  We walked away with this bird house for $15.  I can't believe it, if we had purchased this at a pottery or garden store we wouldn't have bought it for less than $40.  I can't wait to see it hanging in our back yard. 
I've been wanting a Hobo wallet/clutch for a while but with all the wedding expenses I couldn't justify spending $130 on one.  I was looking at a local department store and found a Hobo in a discontinued pattern in the clearance section marked down to $77.  I asked if I could use the 20% off coupon from the Sunday circular on redline clearance and they allowed it!  I walked away with this bag for less than half of the original pricetag.  I love the pattern!
 Kate Spade sent an email last week welcoming me to a secret sale / 2 day event.  It coincided with the big Lilly Pulitzer end of season sale so I had a big decision to make.  I couldn't give up a great deal on a handbag though.  A few months ago I purchased a fun Kate Spade bag in coral and I've carried it most of the summer.  I'll continue to carry it into the fall since bright colors are in but I'm sure closer to winter I'll need a more neutral option.  This Southport Avenue Aurelia in Hazel is beautiful and thanks to the sale I received it 65% off.
 When I found out my start date for my new position at work I knew I would need a different planner as my old one had my schedule for only 2 clinics for the upcoming months.  I decided it would be great to have a fun one to also keep my important wedding dates and chores in.  This Lilly Pulitzer agenda goes from August 2012 to December 2013 and has several sections.  There is a full calendar or "quick look" monthly calendar in the middle where I keep all wedding related information.  There is a more extensive "weekly calendar" in the back where I can write all my work related notes and tasks.
 A bauble necklace in pink.  I've wanted one of these for a while so when I was in Raleigh I popped by a favorite boutique and purchased it.  They had so many colors - yellow, mustard, green, blue, mint, pink, purple, burgandy, white....I wasn't sure which one to get.  I wear a lot of black and I knew the pink one would really pop.  I plan on wearing this with my rehearsal dinner dress so I can consider it a wedding expense.  I've already worn this necklace twice this week (once to work and once out with friends) and it looks great with my new Hobo clutch.
I actually bought a few other items that I don't have photos for - a new flowy black top and two jcrew pencil skirts that were marked down from the already clearance price.  Now I'm on a personal spending freeze - I want a pair of booties from DSW (but they don't count because I have a store credit to spend).  I can't purchase anything else that isn't wedding related or a Christmas gift for someone else.  August has been a definite splurge month for me so now it's time to tighten up the wallet.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

New Skin Regimen

Several weeks ago I decided to change my skin regimen.  I experienced a few freaky skin days where I had dryness and acne....I'm blaming that on the humidity.  Also I wanted my skin to be in top shape for my bridal portraits in October.  After a lot of research I decided to start with Murad products and to break out my Clarisonic Mia.  The "acne free" commericals with the clarisonic look alike reminded me that I had one hidden in drawer.  I still love my Avalon Organics Vitamin C cleansing gel but I've used it religiously twice a day for almost three years and I thought it would be a good idea to change it up.  These Murad products are great so far but they are costly so I'm not opposed to the idea of going back to Avalon in the future.
The murad refreshing cleanser is my nighttime face wash.  It does a great job of removing my makeup.  The product contains aloe and cumcumber which I think has been helping reduce some of the redness in my face.  I LOVE that it completely removes my mascara.

The clarisonic mia, I've had this for a few years and I go through spurts where I use it and then I lose interest in it.  It really helped with the weird skin flakiness I was having last month.  I've been using it with the refreshing cleanser three times a week. 
I've been using Ole Henrikson three little wonders for a couple of years and I love it.   I use the gel and the transformation cream at night and the vitamin c serum in the mornings.  The products help with dryness and redness.  The fact that I continue to purchase this is huge for me, I always try samples of products but nothing has compared.
I use Fresh sugar lip treatment every night.  I think exfoliating and moisturizing at night helps my lipstick go on perfect in the morning.
Bobbi Brown Hydrating Eyes has been my eye cream for the past couple of months.  I received a sample of this product and the jar is neverending.  It's an okay product, I'll use my sample but I probably will not purchase the full size.
My morning face wash Murad AHA exfoliating cleanser.  Since I use this I only need to use the clarisonic 2-3 times a week.  The exfoliating particles are small and they aren't sharp like the apricot scrub I was using.  This product also contains glycolic acid which is the ingredient I think is helping with my uneven skin tone in the morning.  Of all the two Murad products this is the one I think is  doing the most for my skin.

Overall I'm happy with this routine, it doesn't take a lot of time and the products are all generously sized.  Also I have had several days in the past two weeks where I haven't wanted to wear face makeup  (I still wore powder, blush, and eye products).  I feel like my skin is looking very fresh and even on it's own ....and since it's been so hot and humid I like wearing less layers on my face.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Our Save the Date Postcards

My Save the Dates are in!  I ordered from and I couldn't be more happy with the result.  Here is what I saw when I took them out of the box. 
 Really pretty packaging using grosgrain ribbon!
Thanks Pat!  I love them!
 Ta Da... here is the finished product!  I chose a standard postcard featuring our engagement photo from our session in the park.  The paper quality is sturdy and the picture is clear.

I'm not going to share the back of my postcard because it features personal information but we chose another photo for the back and added a link to our wedding website.  I think the finished product is adorable and I can't wait to send them out in a few weeks

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Registering Fun and Ring Shopping

I think we are finally finished with our wedding registry.  I'd like to offer advice to couples who have yet to register for their wedding...make a list and give yourself plenty of time.  I really wanted it to be fun so we went in blind (well not completely, we had researched and read reviews on a few appliances).  Originally we chose two stores for our registry but we soon realized we needed to add a third store to meet the "quota" for items in all price ranges.  We did almost everything in one day in person but I had to tidy everything up online.  It also took some additional time for us to settle on a few items.  I learned that a lot of stores offer discounts on anything left on a registry, it was an incentive to register for expensive items that we would never expect our guests to consider.  Really who can afford to give someone a $300+ vacuum? 

I am really excited for an automatic 20% off a Dyson though :-)  I'm going to share a few of our registry favorites:
 TravelPro Lite Walkabout
 Kate Spade Liberty Lane
 Calphalon  (we will probably buy pieces from this set for each other as holiday gifts)
 Kate Spade Photo Frame
Gorham Lady Anne Crystal Cake Server.  We registered for the matching toasting flutes and candle sticks as well.

And here are a couple of pictures I took the day we registered at Target...nevermind the doe in headlights look I gave the camera.  For some reason I thought it was really important to "capture the moment"...haha!

Also for the past few weekends we have visited several jewelry stores looking for the perfect wedding bands.  My engagement ring came from Baileys (a local jewelry chain) and I found a great channel set diamond band that complements my center stone.  It should look a lot like this:
R decided to go with cobalt as his metal of choice.  I did a lot of research on Scott Kay Cobalt and it seems perfect for him.  This is his front runner:

I think ring shopping is probably my favorite wedding chore so far and I can't wait to finalize our decision and purchase his ring!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Let them eat cake!

Today has been really exciting.  One of my best friends is having twins and just sent out her announcements and baby shower invitations to tell everyone what she is having.  I could not stop squealing when I opened mine!!!  I'm not sharing on my blog because a few of my readers are also friends with her and may not know yet.

On the wedding front....I ordered my cake topper!

My aunt is making our cake and I searched high and low for a cake design that would fit our reception.  I found the perfect one at Southern Weddings.

I don't know for sure who made this cake topper because I don't think it was credited in the article.  I found at Etsy seller that makes custom toppers that look exactly the same.  I will not be able to show mine on the blog because she matches the bride's dress and accessories as much as possible in her design and R reads my blog occasionally.  I will feature some of her work though...because they are too beautiful not to.

The etsy seller is MilkTeabyBthanari.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Bridal Bling

Accessorizing my wedding dress was a very difficult chore.  I wanted to pick things that would flatter my dress without stealing the scene.  I found a great brand called Nadri at a few of the local Belk stores.  They don't carry a wide range of products so it was hard to find exactly what I was looking for but I purchased two items that I loved.

 And if you remember a while back I posted a photo of a pair of pink Lulu Townsend shoes but after a ton of anxiety over whether they were too dark I decided I would keep looking.  This is a new style from Nina and they are totally over the top but I think they could bring a lot of personality to my dress (and are especially cute for bridal portraits).  There are several shades of pink and I feel like it mimics the bouquet idea that I sent the florist.  I plan to purchase a pair of sole mates because these are fabric heels and I have to cross a gravel walkway from my ceremony to my reception.  I want to keep these in great condition because they could really dress up some of my cocktail attire long after the wedding.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Engagement Session 2

So I've been super glum lately.  I'm so glad that I've had wedding chores to take my mind off of everything, I'm knocking those August chores out one by one.  We finally saw Dark Knight this past weekend and it was fabulous, it might be one I'd be willing to pay for twice just to see it in the theater again.  We also finally got around to taking our second session of bridal portraits this weekend.  R and I woke up at 4:30am on Saturday to get ready so we could be on location for our photo shoot at sunrise.  It was beautiful but humid and my hair started frizzing almost immediately.  The sun was super bright not even an hour after sunrise so it was hard to remind myself not to squint.  I love how they turned out though.