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I just haven’t had much time to blog lately. I’ve been swept off my feet with wedding planning. I find myself spending hours and hours admiring wedding idea blogs and entertaining myself with pictures upon pictures of dream weddings. It’s been such a fun adventure.

I thought I’d share with you the handful of venues we actually visited in person. (Not mention that I also spent hours of time on the Internet researching many others!) I’ve always imagined my wedding as a beautiful outdoor experience, and here are the all places we checked out to find the right fit. Can you guess which venue we chose?

Guestbook

I whipped these up in about an hour and a half last night.

Tags for guests’ wishes to go in the wedding scrapbook!

I was here last night. She’s been named one of the top ten best wedding photographers in the world. Yes, world! (Can you even imagine such an honor?) Anyways, last night I spent a full hour just browsing her blog. Jessica Claire is incredible.

I have been having so much fun with this wedding planning. At one point I dreaded it–that is, before I was actually engaged. I used to think it would be time-consuming (which it is!) and stressful (which it is not!). I thought I’d just want to have a magic fairy whip up my day for me, but I’ve been l-o-v-i-n-g it. I feel that I will only do this once, so I want to enjoy this time in my life and relish every day!

Sources of fablous, creative ideas:

What I’ve found is that I’m in awe of wedding photos. I find myself staying up at night just to admire wedding photography. There are some REALLY talented photographers out there, and it’s so much fun getting decorating and creative ideas!

Isn’t this a cute idea?

Maybe during the month of March I’ll give you a glimpse into my wedding planning. Fun?

I loved this post by one of my favorite bloggers, so I’m following suit and answering her question, “What do you know for sure?”

  • I love-love-love my nieces! Although those two little kiddos are a lot of work, they make me smile more than you’d ever think.
  • Wedding planning is easier than I thought. I’m having a lot of fun, and am happy that with my indecisive nature, I’m able to make decisions with speed and ease.
  • I want to learn more about photography! Am inspired by awesome photographers these days.
  • I enjoy reading and scrapbooking. Probably my favorite indoor activities.
  • I love hiking and walking. (Probably my fave outdoor activities.)
  • I hate clutter—especially in my home.
  • Disorganization and chaos at work bugs me. It just does.
  • My yellow bedroom and purple kitchen make me smile.
  • Cake, cookies or ice-cream are almost always sure to help lower my stress levels.

Picture Perfect

Some talented photographers who inspire me:

Heather Bennett: Look at the gorgeous color in her photos. Beautiful! Each photo is so rich and vibrant! (I don’t think I’ve ever seen more colorful pictures!)

Jennifer Bowen: It’s so much fun to visit blogs like hers!

Britney Gardner: My good friend got married in southern California a few years ago, and Britney was her photographer. I’ve been in awe of her work ever since, and I absolutly love her photojournalistic approach!

Kimberly Jarman: I love her documentary approach, and she highlights great sepia toned images and black and whites. Super fun.

Melissa Jill: In my search for wedding photographer, I came across Melissa and now look forward to checking her blog daily. I love her natural style. She really does an incredible job of catching spontaneous once-in-a-lifetime moments.

Lizzie Kimball: Again, another wonderful photographer with a great photo-journalistic style.

Tracy Kreck: Just look at her photos. This woman is so talented!

Amanda Nemec: I’m a regular follower of her personal blog, and I love that she has a full-time job as an enginner but still makes time to show off her talent by shooting weddings, families and more on evenings and weekends. (She keeps busy!)

Kelsie Pinkerton: I think her work is so fun!

Mary Sandy: I love how she incorporates a photojournalistic style along with wonderful poses. I also truly appreciate her use of natural light whenever possible.

Let me tell you: with so many options it was hard to pick my wedding photographer. (I will reveal who I picked after the wedding! So, wait for my surprise! I know that I picked a wonderful photographer (and am lucky to have a fabulous second shooter!) who will do an excellent job!

My fiancé (hehee the “f” word still makes me giggle every time!) and I attended a beautiful Valentine’s wedding on Sunday of a fellow bookclubber.

It’s her second marriage; his first. I was excited to go and pay special attention to details since mine is coming up so quickly. And, wow did she go over-the-top with details! With her chosen day as February 14, she went with a romantic red and white theme complemented with hearts and roses.

The six bridesmaids (yes, six!) wore striking long red dresses and carried elegant red rose bouquets. And, her dress–let’s just say lavish. Lace, floor length veil. (Although not my personal choice of style, you couldn’t deny that the dress was gorgeous.) She went all out.

The reception hall was in a large hotel ballroom and was beautifully decorated with white and red table linens and white chair covers with coordinating red satin chair ties. The centerpieces included circular mirror tiles, hurricane candle vases, red and white rose petals, and red and silver wrapped Hershey kisses along with a red heart-shaped helium balloon the flew high above everyone’s heads. (Even the women’s restroom had rose petals sprinkled on the countertops! I’m telling you—details!)

Each guest walked away with a full belly (the food was delicious–chicken and salmon dinner buffet!) and carrying two favors: a cute votive candle with heart trim and a mint tin that was personalized with his/her seat assignment.

I counted 18 tables, so this was a large-scale event with more than 100 guests in attendance! This was the first time I had ever attended a Jewish wedding, so it was extra fun for me to be there and experience something new. (My only complaint: a long time before eating. Oh well. Guess her wedding coordinator was concerned with other details, right!?)

Now that I’m planning my own wedding I’m enjoying noticing the personalities of the bride and groom and their added touches–moreso than ever before. Each wedding has its own style and flavor just like each couple is unique. I have another wedding to attend at the end of this month and am interested to take note of their details and what they did to make their day special and personalized.

Cheers to the happy newlyweds!

I won!

I won a contest! I actually won! How cool is that?!

One of my friends from college sent me a link to a contest that was happening for a FREE Day-of-Wedding Coordinator. So, I submitted my entry on Friday, which was the due date, and I got the good news phone call today that I had won their Valentine’s promotion!

Although I’m niehter the gifted writer that this talented gal is nor have the inherent wit of this humorous blogger, I tried my best to submit both stories in 300 words or less.

Here’s an excerpt from our proposal story~

I learned that magic happens when you think a person to be extraordinary.
I realized that love isn’t always black and white.
I’ve learned to be flexible and follow my heart.
He’s the one.

Here’s what I submitted for how I envision my dream wedding~

My romantic wedding day:
Carefree—with flowers in my hair.
Stress free—with a smile on my face.
Worry free—with the man I love.

I want a simple, yet elegant wedding—a lovely, relaxed spring day where my family and close friends come together. Not lavish, but meaninful. Maybe frugal, but beautiful.

There are elements I thought I wanted when I would picture my wedding years ago, but as I’m planning, I’m choosing details that although different, they feel so right.

I may have thought that I wanted to carry wild flowers.
I’ve chosen elegant tulips, lilies and roses representing Easter and springtime.

I may have thought I wanted a flowing, chiffon Grecian-like dress.
I’ve chosen a style that reflects my personality and makes me smile when I try it on.

I may have thought I wanted a wedding in Sedona.
I’ve chosen a local venue that has the scenery I wanted: a picturesque desert view with gorgeous mountains (to satisfy my native-born love of the Sonoran Desert.)

Thankfully, as I’ve searched online, flipped through magazines, and started making plans, the event is coming together smoothly. I’m going with the flow and enjoying the process while mindful of budget and priorities. This journey has reminded me that when it’s meant to be, everything falls into place. I believe this is a reflection of the way our wedding should be: happy, light-hearted, fun, romantic and stress free!

I would feel blessed to win this contest and earn a gift as special as making our day the stress-free event I’m dreaming of. I’d gladly welcome your advice, support and extra care to help us achieve a graceful day where everyone has a good time and feels surrounded by love.

Thank you for helping us create lasting and beautiful memories.

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