Thursday, April 30, 2009

this makes me so happy

We don't know very many of our new neighbors, but just a couple weeks after we moved in, I accosted one of them with kale. She was biking by, and I was trying to get rid of some CSA excess. We ended up talking a couple of times, and we invited their family over last time we had a dinner get-together. They came, it was fun!

Today she told me that ever since that night, her two-year-old son calls me "Party" and that every time they drive by our house he says, "There's Party's house! Lets go to Party's house!"

I secretly wish that more people thought "Party!" every time they saw me...

no wonder i haven't been keeping up

on dishes and laundry! A week ago, I made myself a list of all the stuff I have to do between now and the wedding. I'm a procrastinator, so I broke it up into sections to give myself lots of deadlines. The list is so long that it sorta makes me understand why people plan weddings so far in advance, but I think three months is perfect for me.

Otherwise I'd have obsessed about wedding planning like this for a couple of years, without ever accomplishing much, and I would still end up doing exactly what I'm doing now, which is rushing to get it all done at the last minute. That's what I meant when I told Will that I just wanted to get it over with instead of waiting until next summer or something. Plus, I'm totally in love with him and excited to have a husband. Plus there's that whole health care thing.

Anyway, here's what I've done in the last 6 days:
follow up with the scavenger hunt guy
talk to S about M helping at the reception
follow up with L about helping
send my dad the link with sheet music (he's playing flute at our ceremony)
figure out shirt for Will and buy it
order shirts for 2 boys
order dress for 1 girl
book the park for the rehearsal dinner bbq
update website with accomodation info
figure out where we're spending the night on our honeymoon
update wedding registry
confirm flowers with farmer lady
email everyone at work to save jars
start collecting jars
reserve kennel for the dog
get fabric for napkins
plan date and tell my mom who to invite to flowermaking party
work on figuring out ceremony readings
find out about marriage license rules
figure out tripod for diy photobooth
get backdrops for diy photobooth
finalize ring order/finish paying for rings
make and test four different sangria recipes

Whew! See what I mean about housework going by the wayside? It would be different if I weren't working full time and we didn't have 4 kids! We spent half the weekend playing laser tag and mini golf and riding go carts and entertaining extended family. Oh, and I'm training for two races, too (got in an 8.4 mile run over the weekend...)

Here's what still needs to be done before May 6:
finish inviting people
figure out who is helping with what, make separate list, and make sure they know what to do
talk to D about helping
figure out who else can help at the reception
get Will vest/tie
figure out what the boys are wearing for pants and ties, buy if necessary new jeans for one of them
buy shirt for Dante
talk to Will's brother about role in the wedding
figure out how to serve ice cream
order flowers for Seppie’s (and girl's?) hair
mail deposit check to honeymoon place
update wedding registry
collect pasta sauce jars
get candles for jars
figure out ribbon for bouquets
figure out/get light strings for indoors
get more light strings for outdoors
figure out how to serve drinks/kid drinks
figure out/get all tablecloths
make napkins
get ready for flower making party (try out flowers, get paper, thank you notes)
chalkboards for photobooth, with signage
make Martha Stewart poufs?
choose readings, figure out who is doing readings – talk to them
work on vows
figure out how everyone is getting to the wedding/getting home
drunk shuttle?
confirm where out of town peeps are staying
figure out/order wine
get shoes/hair accessories
work on ceremony program
tell each other how much we love each other every single day
do something to work on our relationship every single day
figure out guest book
make sure wedding outfits fit
seppie get foundation garments
seppie get/make shrug (and one for the girl?)
get big frame/more backdrops (?)/costumes for diy photobooth

Oh, and did I mention that I have an all day meeting tomorrow, and I haven't written sub plans yet? Or that we're having a nerf gun slumber party at our house on Friday night? With eight 11-year-old boys? And a dinner party on Saturday night? Or that I'm running a 10k race first thing Sunday morning? Or that it's the end of the school year and I have to have my classroom completely cleaned out and packed away on the last day, since it's being used over the summer and we're getting married the week after school gets out? Oy. Blogging is a great form of procrastination...

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

wedding budget

I read a blog post the other day that inspired me to keep track of wedding purchases here, in the spirit of sharing what's realistic and possible in terms of wedding budget. I also think it will be good for me to keep a running list of how much we're actually spending, in order not to let it get too far out of control. I'm notoriously bad at tracking my finances, so it might just be that the only way I'll know how much we've spent is if I vow to blog every penny.

I was just going to include straight wedding costs, but my mom says we have to count rings and honeymoon, too. So far, this is what we've spent and what we've gotten:

8(ish? I'm too lazy to get up and count) strings of white twinkle lights on green cord (wah! haven't found any for cheap with white cords, but we're using the green ones for outside) -- $8.78 thrift store

3 sheets to use for diy photobooth backdrop -- $9.57 thrift store

deposit for church (ceremony and reception will both take place there) -- $150

shirts for the two younger boys -- $24.34 inc. shipping Children's Place

dress for the girl -- $38.65 inc. shipping Gap

shirt for Will -- $20.00 Macy's (sweet sale, 50% off original price + 25% off of that!)

round trip honeymoon plane tickets for BOTH of us (woot!) -- $265.60 Southwest

paying off my rings and Will's wedding band (not sure the exact total for all three rings, will update when I figure it out) -- $396.11

rental of 60 chairs, 50 tidbit plates, 50 dessert plates, 100 forks, 10 dinner plates (not sure of the exact breakdown, will update when I figure it out) -- $298.41

wine and ingredients for sangria tasting -- $40 (approximate, cuz I bought a bunch of other stuff at the same time and can't find the receipt)

dress for me -- $0 borrowing from a friend

jars for candles -- $0 asking everyone I know to save them for me

ring pillow -- $0 borrowing from a friend

invitations -- $0 free wedding website

candles -- $0 so far, I know we'll have to buy a bunch but friends have donated a few to the cause

fabric for napkins -- $5.95 thrift store

giant paper magnolia -- $0 but I will end up spending some $ on paper flowers, I'm sure

So we're at $1,248.63 and counting.
If you take out the rings and plane tickets, it's $586.92 so far for the actual ceremony.

You may have noticed a theme here; I love how saving the earth and saving money so often coincide! Green wedding strategy #2 is to borrow stuff as my first option, buy it used or rent as my second, and buy it new as a last resort.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

it's the most important part, right?

Planning a party is easy, but trying to figure out what the actual ceremony should be like is taking forever! Some parts of it came together fast -- a couple of jokey things that I'm not posting about here, because we want them to be a surprise -- but the actual substance of the thing is hard.

We can't even decide exactly what format to use. Should the format be dictated by what we want to say, or should we narrow down what we should say by choosing a format first? Right now I'm wishing that we had just invited like 5 people each, so that our ceremony could include some stuff that is more intimate, but I guess it's too late for that!

I started out looking at tons and tons and tons and tons of readings. A few weeks ago I cut and pasted and printed off 16 pages of stuff that I thought would be okay to use (don't worry, I did it in a small font on the back of paper that had already been used), plus the ceremony outline and readings that our officiant suggested. We spent a date night looking at all of it together over drinks, with French short films playing on the wall in front of us (sans sound, just music in the background.) It was fun, and we ruled out enough readings that we got things down to ten pages total, but we didn't make any firm decisions.

Last night we talked about doing a Quaker-style ceremony, where anyone who is moved to speak can do so. The office manager at our venue did this for her wedding, and she said it was amazing and beautiful and she really encouraged us to consider it. Will thinks it's a fine idea, so I thought that would solve the problem of readings: we won't choose any, but if anyone wants to bring some, they can. I like the element of surprise, and the element of community, and the fact that it's like making something purposeful out of laziness and indecision. However...

this morning on my way to work, I started getting cold feet. Here's the problem: no control. And if I thought that everyone would say something lovely and appropriate, I would feel like, "yay! we're done! no worries about choosing readings!" But I'm pretty sure that at least some of Will's friends would say stuff about how he swore he would never get married again, or how he must not hate women as much as he used to, or...who knows. And I don't think it's selfish of me to want our wedding to be about us and our marriage, not about Will's divorce. He agrees. So there goes the Quaker ceremony idea, and we're back to square one.

Then I thought maybe we could each choose one person, and that one person could choose a reading, and we'd still have the element of surprise, without the fear of inappropriateness. Will doesn't know who he could choose who would know what kind of thing to read, so he vetoed that idea as well.

We've texted back and forth this morning, and talked for a bit over lunch, and now we've decided that either we'll each do a reading and then have our officiant read the vows while we just say "I do" OR we'll choose a couple of people to do readings and then read our own vows to each other. What we don't want is a ceremony where the officiant does all the talking. So I guess we've narrowed it down from 5 or 6 options to just 2. That's progress, right?

Monday, April 27, 2009

awfully sweet brothers

Who would have thought that playing XBox 360 could be so cute and loving? I came downstairs the other day and had to take a picture.

I took this one the night after we went to a first grade Dr. Seuss celebration. Sebastian made his hat and got the Cat in the Hat and this book as a gift from his teachers.

It's not just video games that make them snuggle up so nicely! I had been upstairs and wondered why they were so quiet...

Saturday, April 25, 2009

cute diy to-go ware

This post is a bit belated, because I actually made this for a Christmas present for my teaching partner, Nicole. I used to give her a really hard time, because she was so germ phobic that if there was no clean silverware in the lounge, she would use plastic instead of washing some herself. She didn't trust the silverware to be germ-free unless it had gone through the dishwasher cycle.

So I decided to make my own version of to-go ware for her. My mom had ordered something similar off of Etsy, and I used that for the general idea, but what I made for Nicole ended up totally different than the one she has. First I got some bamboo utensils, then I went to the thrift store and found a couple of women's button-down shirts in coordinating colors. I loved the first one; it was a kind of cowgirl-style Lucky Brand shirt with snaps. The second one was just a plain pale pink.

Here's the finished product, unrolled and ready to use:

Nicole keeps hers at school, so she only has to carry it from her classroom to the lounge, but this would totally work to slip into a purse or backpack, or to keep in the glovebox of your car or in the saddlebags of your bike. My mom's has fabric strips that tie together to keep it rolled up, but I used one of the snaps from the Lucky shirt as the fastener. Next time I make one of these it will probably be slightly different, since I specifically designed this one around that particular shirt. I also love how I was able to incorporate the little tag from the placket that says "Lucky You" on the strap. Here it is rolled up, ready to carry:

For the outside, I cut one of the front pockets off the shirt. You'll notice that I used pinking shears to do most of the cutting of the dark pink shirt, just because I'm lazy and hate sewing hems, but I think it ended up looking cool and purposeful, and it echoed some of the design elements in the fabric and stitching.

I cut a square out of the light pink shirt to use as a napkin. It fits perfectly into the little pocket:

I pretty much just made the pattern up as I went along, so it took longer than it would have if I wasn't totally experimenting, but it was still definitely a quick project, definitely doable as a gift. I spent about $5 on the shirts, and $8 on the bamboo utensils, so it was pretty cheap, too! I think that next time I'll make a template instead of freehanding everything.

I'm going to make these for our whole family, eventually (but not 'till after the wedding!) and when I make the next one, I'll take pics as I go so I can post a tutorial. I'm also going to look for actual silverware at thrift stores and garage sales, so that we don't have to buy new bamboo utensils for our whole family.

Monday, April 6, 2009

yay, me!

I went ahead and signed up for the Colorado Marathon 10K AND the Bolder Boulder. Two 10Ks in one month! So I really need to get ready quickly, but I haven't found any training programs designed to get you ready for a 10K in 4 weeks. What I'm going to do is use a 12 week half-marathon training schedule that has a 10K race in week 10, and I'm starting on the week 6 schedule. Got that?

Today was supposed to be my "stretch and strengthen" day for this week, so I did a 75 minute Ashtanga yoga class. It kicked my butt -- my arms were shaking so hard when I got done that I kept missing the buttons on the microwave when I was heating up dinner -- but it felt really good, especially since I ran into some wedding planning issues earlier in the day (more on those later.) Tomorrow is a 4 mile early-morning run, so I guess I'd better go to bed now!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

what a weirdo

Sebastian loves Will's dog Kobi so much that I feel guilty for never letting my kids have a dog before. He seriously spends most of his time at home loving on Kobi. But it's really funny to listen to him talk to/about her...

Yesterday morning:
S: (hugging Kobi) Koooooobiiiii! Your stomach is getting so fat! Maybe you're about to have some baaaaabies!
Me: Kobi can't have babies, we're just trying to feed her more because she was getting so skinny.
S: Why can't she have babies?
Me: Because she had surgery that makes it so she won't, because there are already way too many dogs in the world who need homes.
S: Can I get that surgery, too?
Me: (in my head) ???????? WTF ??????
Me: (out loud) Maybe, if you want to when you're a grownup.

This morning:
S: (hugging Kobi) Leadership is what you are all about, Kobi. (runs off to play)
Me: (in my head) ???????? WTF ???????

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

feeling frustrated

I can't seem to find or make time to run and do yoga these days. Before Will and I got serious, I always managed to do yoga 2 times a week and run 2-3 times a week, even when things were at their busiest. The summer before we met, I was running waaaaaay more than that. But my whole life got shaken up when I fell in love, and I haven't gotten back on track. I really want to run the Bolder Boulder this year, and I know I can make it into one of the qualifying waves, but that means running a qualifying race...

Hold the presses! I just had a sudden flash of inspiration, because I had forgotten that the 10k I did last spring was NOT the last race I ran (that was too long ago to count as a qualifying race). I took a little break from bitching, and found the results for the race I ran in July. This whole sitting-on-my-ass thing has gone on way too long -- I can't believe I haven't run a race in almost 9 months. But that race will indeed count, and I did indeed qualify, for an even faster wave than I thought I would, despite the fact that I ran that race with no training and my time was way slower than the year prior.

So, I guess I'm running the Bolder Boulder! Yay! Now I'm feeling more excited than frustrated. Good thing I have a blog or I might never have gotten it all worked out. I was starting to worry that I would need spanx to fit into my wedding dress.

But I'm also back to the original problem: how to make time for training? I need a plan. I'll talk to Will about it tomorrow, then post here so I'll be accountable to everyone in the whole entire world.