Monday, May 28, 2012

Getting Showered!!!

Happy Memorial Day Friends! I was just too eager to write this post to wait till tomorrow and it seemed fitting that today is another patriotic celebration much like July 4th, and I'm quite excited for our plans around that date! On July 1st, my future mother-in-law is throwing us a couples shower!! It's my first shower and I'm incredibly excited about the opportunity to have this momentous step in being a bride!

Fiance's family is renting a lake house on Lake Norman and his grandparents from Florida are coming and the families are really going to be together for the first time, so it'll be an interesting experience! My parents have only met his mom once and I've never seen fiance's dad or mom in the same room! Ah, divorced parents.. BUT not only is family coming but our dear friends have been invited too!!! The bridal party and a few select others. I didn't want to burden too many people since it's not close to where we live, but I wanted to be able to extend the invite to a few friends that I think might like to celebrate with us. 

Here's the invite we received:

I figured by now most everyone should have checked their mail already so I'm sharing it on here. :) What's even more fun is that I couldn't help but look at our registries and I saw that gifts have been BOUGHT! EEK! We're getting our first "wedding" gifts in a couple of weeks and it's so crazy to fathom that the time is drawing near! Each little thing is just making it more real and I'm super excited about what's to come.

Here's some of my pinterest ideas for how a lake shower could look:

With all this inspiration, I even purchased myself a cute little white dress for the occasion! (I couldn't help myself, it was on sale..) We have a Lilly Pulitzer flagship store in Raleigh and I popped in on Friday and found myself the perfect dress for summer and being by the lake. It just so happened that there was plenty of white and that's what it got to be. :)

What do y'all think of the dress I choose?! The "Joan" dress.


I know halter isn't for everyone, but I quite like it on myself and I know I'll be comfortable the whole day not pulling up any straps or the dress itself on a strapless dress. Score for comfort! It also has really pretty eyelet detail that you can't really see unless you're close up. But I think it's a great dress for the occasion and I can wear it again. Now we just need to work on what Fiance will wear!

Can't wait to post pics of the real thing!


Thursday, May 24, 2012

Groovin' to the music

Good Thursday morning beauties! I was feeling uninspired this week as to really not having accomplished anything wedding wise. I'm still struggling with the invites because I cannot fathom spending over $1000 on invites as much as I may love them, so it seems like Minted is going to be the best budget option that I can still add some exciting flair to.

I did spend a lovely weekend away from planning the wedding with the fiance down at the coast in a tiny little cabin found on VRBO (I love that site!!). It was a great relaxing time, filled with cuddling and wine! <3

 (The weather was not good but we made the best of it, Cape Lookout, NC)

But getting back on track. I wanted to touch base on the reception and how from the moment we got engaged I wanted a particular band.. Back when fiance and I first met, he took me on a wonderful date to get sushi and to see his favorite cover band, The Dickens. They were AMAZING and we have been going to see them almost every time they play in Raleigh. It's "our thing" and we encourage our friends to come and have an amazing time and listen to a fantastic band. Really y'all, they are the best thing since sliced bread. They just have a way with the crowd. The lead singer, Percy, is a real Casanova.. Very suave and a great singer. From Led Zepplin, Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga, Outkast, Bon Jovi, to Usher, they play it all. I mean just LOOK at how cool they are!

Photo courtesy of Kellie Kano Photography

Like they say the music can make or break the reception and I know these guys will definitely make our wedding out of this world, and I'm so excited to party with everyone to their jams! I'm especially excited to have my family experience their tunes since we talk so highly of them.

Now, I DO have to remind you that hiring a band is a HUGEEEEE expense. It was NOT cheap. (Maybe our most expensive purchase?!.. eek!) We begged and pleaded with all three of our parents, decided that we could chip in and basically split it 4 ways.. We even begged the band to see what they could do and if they could help us have this important part of our wedding happen. It was not easy and many tears were shed, but we just KNEW this had to happen. After all, the Dickens are part of our lives, and why not start the official beginning of our life together with our favorite band?! So I'm glad it's happening and I'm so thankful everyone could let this happen. It means the world to us and we are so excited to share it with those we love!

That's why I want our reception to be a big party of love, dancing, and groovin'! Check them out if you don't believe me!


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

A lull and indecisiveness..

I feel like I don't have much to talk about this week and when I'm not doing some wedding related, I get a little anxious feeling like I'm wasting perfect opportunities to be productive so that I'm not waiting till the last minute. ARGH. I guess there are just sometimes where you just might not have things to do though!!

One thing that is bothering me is the fact that I can't decide on invitations. I like certain ones, I don't LOVE certain ones, and I'm frustrated. I wish I could combine the ones I like for a less expensive price. Of course the ones I'm REALLY drawn to, are the uber expensive ones and that's frustrating for me. I like some of the ones on the online shops like Minted & Wedding Paper Divas, but I still don't feel quite right about them.

Here are some options I'm kinda digging, and I'd LOVE opinions to hear what you have to think! Throughout this whole process I feel like I can like something, but what's really important is that just one or two OTHERS like it too. I know it's silly, but I just am having the hardest time committing!!

OK, a little stationary inspiration.

One of the faves from

Cute one from

I swoon for this pricey beauty from

An old favorite but super pricey from

Mod city themed invite for Raleigh from

Pretty little beauty from

Anyway, all over the place Amanda is still sitting here, unsure of all the options. I like something about each one. Concern #1, I want my invite to say "mr. & mrs. request the pleasure of your presence at the marriage of their daughter". I want that traditional bit on my invites! #2, I also think I prefer white paper versus a cream color, case in point the last option above, I'd rather see it on white paper. Just my personal preference. #3, I'd like gray fonts, maybe a pop of orange, or black fonts, so some of that is changeable which is nice. #4, I do notice that I'm a huge fan of typology and fonts. I adore them and that's why all these invites really lack any pictures. #5, I also don't want to spend an arm and a leg, so invite 1-3 are totally doable right away, the others may be more pricey because I'd probably have to find someone to almost recreate them. Dilemma...

What do y'all think? Any favesies?!? Suggestions of any websites that I haven't visited are also welcome. I'm open to suggestions! Until then, I'll just let time pass... JK. I really need to get on this, so help is appreciated!


Thursday, May 10, 2012


Whoa buddy, where has the time gone?! Only 6 months to go till the big day! I can't believe July 6th will be a year since our engagement too.. Time is just flying by now and my weekends are becoming booked up for the rest of the year and it's mind blowing. It really will be here before we know it! So I've gathered a list of our "To-Do's" for the big day and I thought I'd share and continue to mark off our progress as time goes on:

Set a date   
Book church
Book photographer
Book reception
Ask bridal party members
Create wedding website
Book florist
Book rehearsal dinner venue
Book ceremony musician
Book reception band
Wedding dress shopping
Bridesmaid dress shopping
Buy wedding shoes
Order wedding dress
Decide on groomsmen tuxes
Take engagement pictures
Finalize guest list
Guest hotel blocks
Select MOB & MOG dresses
Select Tux for Nick
Order bridesmaid dresses
Order veil
Book cake baker
Order and select linens
Design and order Save the Dates
Address and mail Save the Dates
Order guest book
Order garter
Wedding gown alterations
Book Hair stylist
Book makeup artist
Hair/Makeup Trial
Design and order invites
Address invites
Mail invitations
Bridal portraits?
Decide on reception menu
Decide on reception drinks
Plan ceremony order
Meet with officiant
Create wedding day timeline
Purchase wedding bands
Finalize rehearsal dinner menu
Buy flower girl gifts
Order sparklers for exit
Purchase koozies
Custom wedding napkins
DIY drink stirres/straws?
Chalk board program
Chalk board menu
OOT bags for hotel rooms
DIY card box?
DIY Moss letters
Buy bridesmaid gifts
Buy groomsmen gifts
Buy parents gifts
Buy greeter/reader gifts
Gift bag for Meredith
Make bathroom baskets for reception
Make day-of emergency kits
Put together getting ready playlist
Get Marriage License
Book honeymoon
Rehearsal Dinner invitations
Final vendor payments

Book wedding night hotel room
Thank you notes

Buy glow sticks for reception
Pay for wedding rings
Order flower girl dresses
Make-shift photo booth?

It's exhausting to look at! But I have confidence I'll get it done. I'm just still having a hard time commiting to some invites right now, which is a definite must order in the next coming weeks. But until then, I'm excited that I get texts from fiance that say "6 months to go, love you!!" Love him to bits!


Tuesday, May 8, 2012

little girls, best in the world

One of the exciting parts of getting married is that you create a new family. Fiance's family is wonderful and he has an older sister with two gorgeous little girls! I'm beyond elated to be getting TWO neices once we tie the knot. There is Caroline, who is going to be 4 in July and the crazy rebel Macy who will be three in January. These two are quite the duo and I know they will add the perfect punch to my wedding march on November 10th, because they'll both be flower girls!! *squeal* I'm so excited to have them as part of the wedding because after all they're about to be my family forever, and I was lucky enough to have been a flower girl once and a junior bridesmaid. But really, aren't these the two the cutest?!

You could just eat them up. They're totally gaga over their uncle too, which is the cutest thing ever. Well, this weekend my future sister-in-law placed the order for their flower girl dresses, and I have to say I'm SO excited about these adorable gowns. I sorta want one for myself!

Totally adorbs I can't stand it. I love this little dress. It's by US Angels and purchased via Nordstrom. I can't wait to see what the girls look like in it. I also requested that the SIL purchase a particular pair of shoes.

I mean, who doesn't like sparkle? I also requested these little glittery cuties because I, myself, will be wearing a glittery pair of Kate Spades, and I think we should all totally match! I cannot wait to wear these beauties! The "Charm" shoe is the name of it! :)
Ok, I'm officially excited!!! What do y'all think?! Are you having a flower girl? What are they wearing?!

P.S. 6 months to go on THURSDAY! WHAT?!!!!


Sunday, May 6, 2012


I have a lot of wedding things to chat about this week but I wanted to stop and make a post about the other side of life. I've noticed that in the past few weeks I have become very forgetful, which is very uncharacteristic of me, and honestly it's kind of frightening sometimes but I'm sticking in there currently! Who knows how frazzled I'll be in a couple months.. whew. 

It's made me also realize, that in my free time I'm constantly looking up wedding inspiration and details, etc. I spend countless hours on the web while fiance sits next to me on his computer or watching tv. For instance, since I got up this morning I have been looking at wedding stuff and it's currently 11:45. YIKES. Sometimes I just need to throw on the breaks, and I'm realizing that a lot with my relationship with fiance. 

Things aren't bad between us, but I'm so busy I feel like I'm neglecting us as a couple. Less kisses, less communicating, less attention and it's making me a wee bit sad! In two weeks we are headed to the beach for a weekend and we kept thinking of whether monetarily it's a good idea, but we got a good deal and we decided we NEEDED to go. We NEED to go because we NEED to get away and just be US. No computers, limited cell us, just us two bonding over each other like we are accustom to.

us vacationing last May on Bald Head Island

So while I was in the process of wedding hunting, I checked my blogs and have been looking at my friend Lauren's friend's blog, (You following that?!), and saw her post about her and her hubby who are in a young married couples class and how they were discussing romance. Even though we're not married yet, we live together so we're pretty much in a similar boat. Here's what her post suggested to spice up your love life:
  1. Connect with something he feels successful in/enjoys. Does he have a hobby that you aren't particularly interested in? Take an interest in it with him. Get decked out for a game and watch it with him. Go for a motorcycle ride with him or join him at a Harley show {biker chick hair and all ;)}. Guys like to do things they are good at. Build him up by commenting on how great he is at x,y,z. Oh, and sex. He most always likes that :) 
  2. 'Romance is knowing your lover" Become a student to your man. Learn what he likes, doesn't like. Each person is different and requires different ways of being romanced. Romance takes effort and practice. Don't give up after one big flop.
  3. Make it a point to think of your man romantically during the day. Sneak in the closet and smell one of his sweaters. Keep a photo of him at your office or on your phone. Randomly call him to say 'i love you' during the day. Think of a special intimate time together after the hustle and bustle of the day but before you get home so you are out of work mode and in wife mode.
  4. Have each of you make a list of dream dates and cheap dates. Hang both lists up somewhere where you both can be reminded of it. This will be awesome to pull from when you want to surprise him with something that truly makes him happy.
  5. Create anticipation. Send him a risque text during the day about what will happen that night. Ooo la la! Send him cards in the mail each day leading up to a big vacation or anniversary. Buy new lingerie but have him open it at a point during the day when you aren't around.
  6. Set the mood. Candles make the world of a difference {and they make you feel sexy}. Spritz on a new scent or one that he loves. Slip into something sexy. 
  7. INVEST in your relationship and the romance. Set aside some money in your budget each month for romantic things - whether it's new lingerie, a trip to a local bed and breakfast for one night, a big special trip, special surprises, candles, etc. Make sure that you are making your relationship a priority... including financially.   
I appreciated what she had to contribute and it makes me want to make a little more effort between now and the wedding so that we BOTH are still appreciating each other when we get lost in the details of party planning instead of the LOVE that we are celebrating!! 

So I'm going to make some effort today to make sure I'm paying attention to fiance and I'm going to shut off this computer and tell him how great he really is!


Friday, May 4, 2012

Dress Fitting

Happy Friday friends! I'm happy to announce that I have another dress fitting at Nitsa's in Winston-Salem tomorrow. It's ALSO the first time anyone beside my mom has physically seen me in my dress and I'm SUPER excited about it!! My future mother-in-law, aunt and grandma are all coming, and I'm so grateful! It'll be an experience to say the least knowing all these ladies and their opinions but I'm glad they're excited to be a part of the process. This should be my last fitting until it's completed and I don't plan on going to try it on again until I pick up the maids dresses which we are ordering too!!!

We settled on the Amsale long chiffon gowns in charcoal like below:
This is one above is actually one of the dresses we are purchasing, and my other maid chose a different style. It worked out perfectly though because each dress looks so good on each girl and it totally works for their personalities too! SO excited to be settling on this! I had my eye on the Amsale maid dresses since getting engaged but I was really impressed with the material and the quality and how they look in real wedding situations! (Not to mention I'll be wearing my own Amsale gown!! EEK!)

Yay for prettiness!! I'm so excited!! As for another update, Kenneth Cole did NOT work fiance. This is strike two for purchasing tuxedo's for him to try on and it's very stressful. It just makes me worry that if "slim fit" tuxedo's by Kennth Cole are THAT too big, I don't want to even think about what a rental would look on my poor man. We might try ordering one more tuxedo from Macy's via Tommy Hilfiger where I can purchase the seperate pieces. They even have a 36R tuxedo jacket and 30x32 pants that we could try since the 38 was WAY too big. :( Poor guy..

Anywho, wish us luck tomorrow!! I promise to have some more exciting things to talk about this week.