19 January 2011

my new craft goal:

I think I am going to start making my own word banners like this one, so I can put snarky comments up to my little heart's desire. Mine would read: What the Fuck.* Because nothing says classy like the F word (made out of construction paper) hanging on your wall.

*(Not that anything has to be really wrong for me to say What the Fuck. I say it a lot. For good things. For bad. For interesting thing. For when I'm bored out of my gourd. I should probably buy a thesaurus.)

** Oohh, or I'd put one up that said I'll give you something to cry about. 

15 January 2011

mother f*cking rock star.

I am A Practical Wedding blog today. 

A couple of months ago, whilst in the throes of deciding on a caterer, I send a frantic email to Alyssa at 'Ask Team Practical,' and - while she emailed me back a very sane, very calming email - I left it at that. I never thought it would really make it onto the blog. In my head, everyone else had picking a vendor down. They didn't spend sleepless nights wondering about choosing the extremely nice caterer with the only okay chicken or the inflexible caterer with the to-die-for risotto (we ended up going with the extremely nice caterer and we switched the order from chicken to salmon and are keeping our little fingers crossed). It's calmed down a bit now, as we've moved closer to the wedding and made more and more decisions, but I am loving the wise, wise, WISE advice them ladies are giving me over there.

Oh, and did I mention how much of a rock-star I feel like to be on MY FAVORITE BLOG EVER? Seriously, I read it every morning with my first cup of coffee. Every. Damn. Day. Before I look at anything wedding-related, anything work-realted, anything even-breakfast related. I've never even written so much of a guest post on any other blog and here I am, hitting the Broadway play quality of blogs. Hells to the Yes (ug. okay, now i promise never to say that phrase again).

I am trying to stop myself from judging my blog to harshly. Makes me realize that I'm not crazy about my writing the last couple months, the post seem short, I seem a bit whiney, I swear to God that my life in not as shallow as it sometimes is portrayed... so to any new folks from A Practical Wedding - Hello. This is my blog. Some days it is good. Somedays it is less than good. But it keeps me writing, even if that writing is crappy. So please, um, don't judge too hard.

Okay, now that's over. Back to squeeling with joy. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh, and in case you were wondering, here's the entire email exchange between Alyssa and meself. I think my second email is better than the first. You be the judge-ola.

On Sat, Oct 23, 2010 at 3:28 PM, Sarah wrote:
Hi there!

I'm not sure exactly what my question is, but I need some serious advice and a healthy dose of sane. Turns out this wedding planning bit can be stressful, no?

Okay, first the good & important stuff: I am marrying a guy named Amos, I like him, he likes me, and we're totally stoked on this who get-married business. The planning-to-get-married is a little more stressful than we originally anticipted. As of last night, we have a pretty-solid potential venue, and it's even within our budget (by budget, I mean we had to SWAG* a budget, so we're kind of flying blind & making it up as we go along).

So we have a cool venue, and I do like the people who run it (local church group who rehabed it, use it as their space, and rent it out during other days. Imagine a big warehouse with a beautiful wood ceiling). But they haven't done many weddings before (3 with ceremonies), so we're forging a new trail. Which you think is exciting, until you get in the damn thing and can't see the forest for the trees.

We're going to have to rely on our caterer a lot here, and that's why I'm writing you all. How do I know what's a reasonable fee? How do I know what questions to ask? How do I know what I need and don't need (until a week ago, I never even thought or renting linens. Oooh, that's how the tables have those pretty white things draped over them!) And, perhaps most importantly, how do I know when one is good? I wish the good guys - the ones who use local and sustainable ingredients, who pay their servers and staffs fair wages, who reinvest money into the community, who don't want to rip us off, upon whom we can trust to do a great job and think of things we didn't - had halos. Because I'm on website after website and so terrified we are going to get into a situation where we will end up with a bigger bill than we thought, or we won't have things we need (wait, who was supposed to rent the microphone for the ceremony?) and be tots stressed... and broke... and I know, we should start talking to people, but how do you even find the ones to speak with?

Wait, wait, I got my question:
How do I pick a good vendor?

There, after 3 paragraphs of writing, I found what I was trying to ask. Hope you stuck around long enough to read it.


*SWAG = seriously wild ass guess. I think that what it's called when you Google 'how much does a DJ cost?' 'how much does a live band cost?'

PS - thanks for building & supporting such a wonderful community. it makes the world a more friendly place.

On Mon, Oct 25, 2010 at 8:48 AM, Ask Team Practical <askteampractical@apracticalwedding.com> wrote:

Hey you!

It's Alyssa, I just wanted to let you know we got this and we'll add it to our queue and get to it as soon as we can!  Meg and APW get a lot of emails, so I can't guarantee that we'll get to it before your wedding, but we'll try as best we can.

Some questions though:

One - When is your wedding?
Two - Can we use parts of your email when we answer it, including your name and/or your partner's name?
Three - Do you have a blog we can link to?

I feel ya on this, it's a really tough thing to deal with.  You don't want to get ripped off, but you also don't want to pay way more than you have to or go with an inferior vendor...  A couple things to help in the meantime; check out your local boards on Offbeat Bride and ALWAYS check on a place's Better Business Bureau status.  Lack of a status doesn't always mean something bad, but a bad or low grade usually should throw up all kinds of red flags.

Take care, and hope to hear from you soon!

On Mon, Oct 25, 2010 at 1:11 PM, Sarah wrote:

Thanks Thanks! It just felt good to send this out to the (practical) universe... this is much more difficult than I originally expected! For instance, we're interviewing photographers this week, and I really like this one. But on the website, he and his wife mention Jesus a lot. And that's cool - nothing against loving Jesus, by any means! - but I also want to support vendors who believe in the basic equality of every individual person, including marriage equality. Bringing that up can be super tricky - what do I say? "So, Benj, you friendly to the gays? Does your Jesus love focus on the inclusion aspect of Christianity or the separation/judgment aspect of Christianity?" You jive? Tricky business...

Okay, onto your questions:

#1 - I think it's going to be August 13th. Could be August 20th. Or September 10th. All 2011. Should know by tomorrow.
#2 - Sure thing! My name is Sarah, and can you use fiance's last name - Amos - as that's how I call him in my blog.
#3 - yes, I do! I haven't been writing as much as i would like, but I do try to update is once to three times a week. My blog's name is Jackson Riley and the address is http://thisisjacksonriley.blogspot.com

13 January 2011

To My Future Husband.

Dearest Amos,

I know you just started a blog, and I quite like it, though - as you are painfully aware - zombie movies just ain't my thang. I realize this is a big disappointment to you, and I appreciate the fact that you got over it enough to offer marriage to me. At least now I eat pepperoni pizza, unlike the first 5 years we were together. See? I can grow. But don't hold your breath for the zombie movies. That's not looking promising.

Anyway, if you wanted to start another blog, I think you could fashion it like this one? It's one guy's notes to his future wife, and it's pretty much crazy romantic. It's just an idea because - sigh, this probably isn't a surprise - your zombie blog is not making me weak at the knees. It makes me laugh, which is great. Appreciated. But weak in the knees ain't bad either, know what I mean?

All right, that's all I gots for now. When you get home today, let's make fajitas because that sounds delicious.


11 January 2011

my monday morning party trick.

it's Monday morning. For some reason, on Mondays, I really love to get out of bed an hour or two earlier than I need to begin work. Okay, I don't really love the getting out of bed, part, but I do enjoy the hour putzing around my house, doing the dishes and making coffee and packing lunches and making the bed, all while the sun is coming up and filling our little apartment with a smidgen of light. It makes me feel productive and ahead of schedule. It's a wonderful way to begin a week, as within hours, I'm usually miles behind on my to-do list. But for an hour or two on Mondays, man, am I ahead of the game.

{west elm travel mugs, which they unfortunately do not seem to have anymore}

Christmas this year was simple at our house, with an average of one gift per person. Mine was a lovely ceramic travel coffee mug that looks much more West Elm than it's Target origins. I really enjoy it, but I've found a way to maximize the potential. I'm dubbing it my Monday morning party trick. While you are making your coffee, put a put of water on the stove. Doesn't need to be a lot of water, about 8oz - depending on the size of your mug. Once it's almost boiling, pour it into your travel mug. Let it sit for a couple or five minutes. Once your coffee is done brewing, dump out the water and fill up your mug. Now you're coffee will stay warmer longer, as it doesn't have to heat up the mug itself.

I know. Amazing. You're welcome.

05 January 2011

like... woah.

browsing the blogs this morning, eating my usual banana bread, drinking my coffee, and i saw this. Now, folks: I am not a crier. Not at all. Ask anyone, ask my mom. But this? This made tears come to my eyes. Watch it. Cheer for her. Apparently, she didn't win this competition, but my money is betting this Rebecca Ferguson will go big. Love Her, Love the song, Love her story. AND love her darling Liverpool accent.

04 January 2011

merry merry. happy happy. where were we?

Hello all. 
I'm back. 
Didn't mention that I was taking the Holidays off from blogging? 
My bad. 

I needed some serious R&R, so I took from Christmas to New Years off. It was awesome, and I'm - surprisingly, actually - ready to jump back in to normal life. I know, right?

I have to confess, as much as I do love Christmas decorations, there is something very clean about a newly not-decorated house. It's all white and open and almost matches the January weather. I rather like it. It makes me want a house in shades of white, inspired by those sophisticated Scandinavian folks. I don't find them depressing, by any means, but rather energizing. It's like the entire house got in on the New Year / Fresh Start vibe.

I'm not a big one for New Years' Resolutions, but I can't help but feel like this year my goal is to simplify. First thing that's up? My house. Guess that means I'll be taking off the dead wreath on my door. That's how you start of 2011 right.
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