Here it is! The much-loved, long awaited details post. When I was a planning bee, details posts were some of my favorites for the glimpse they gave into the wedding and personality of the bride and groom. As brides, we especially appreciate the thought and hard work that goes into the many details so it’s only appropriate to share the finished product of months of planning.
Let’s begin at the beginning. If you were a PaC wedding guest, you’d walk through the old mansion’s heavy wood doors into the two-story grand hall, where your introduction to the wedding would have been our 16 foot welcome table filled with our escort cards, welcome banner, guestbook, and family photos.
The welcome table almost ready for prime-time!
Being engaged is great. There’s nothing better than knowing that the person you are head over heels in love with feels exactly the same way about you! And if I ever forget that during the day, all it takes is seeing a little hint of sparkle out of the corner of my eye, and my ring reminds me all over again how awesome my life is.
I love my ring. It suits me, and I think it’s beautiful. That’s probably because I picked it out! After Mr. Whale’s proposal, he asked me, “Do you think we can wait a month or two to buy a ring?”
When I finally pulled myself together, I reminded him that he shouldn’t have proposed unless he was prepared to get a ring. Because he’s so awesome, he basically just replied with, “Oh, OK.”
Luckily for him, I had no intention of spending big bucks on an engagement ring. I have expensive taste, but I would be terrified to wear something on my finger than cost more than…maybe two-hundred dollars. I’m a big QVC shopper. (Quality. Value. Convenience. Yeah, I’m a big enough fan to know what the letters stand for.) If you’ve ever watched, you’ve seen Diamonique. I don’t actually have a clue what it is, but man is it beautiful. I already had a pair of Tacori Diamonique earrings, and they are my go-to fancy earrings.
So I started browsing the site. And I eventually found two rings that I really loved:
My family is pretty spread out. I have family members who live in far-flung places all over the world. I even have an uncle who lives at the top of a lighthouse in Switzerland! As a result, my relatives and I hardly ever see each other. Our family reunions are pretty much limited to weddings and funerals, and we haven’t had either one in awhile. That means the Wallaby wedding will be a big family reunion.
Aside from my relatives, I also have a lot of friends from college who will be flying down from Seattle and other parts of the country, and Mr. W has a few relatives who will be coming from the East Coast, and one aunt who will come from Iran. (We are so, so honored that someone will fly around the world to come celebrate our marriage with us!) If you tally up all of the out-of-towners on the guest list, that puts us at about 40 people who will be traveling to the wedding from outside of Texas.
My parents and I want to make sure that all of our relatives feel welcome the weekend of the wedding, and that everyone has plenty of opportunities to catch up and spend some quality time together. We have decided to invite all of the out-of-town guests to the rehearsal dinner. Yes, that’s right—40 out-of-towners, in addition to the whole wedding party and our immediate families, will be feting with us the evening before the wedding. It is going to cost Mr. W and I a pretty penny, but we’ve decided that this will be a great way to get everyone together and give everyone a warm welcome to Houston. We even found a few ways to save money on this dinner.
Our venue is in the outskirts of Houston, and the block of hotel rooms that we’ve booked for our guests is in the same area, so we wanted to find a venue for the rehearsal dinner that is close to the hotel so no one will have to drive too far on Friday evening. (Houston traffic can also be a beezie during rush hour, so we are trying to skirt our guests away from the city gridlock on Friday night!) Our first idea was to buy sandwiches and have a picnic at a park with picnic tables, where everyone can play some games and relax in a low-key atmosphere. But we couldn’t find any parks with enough picnic tables, or with adequate covering in case of rain, so we decided it would be too risky if the weather turned bad. We’re having an outdoor wedding, so that could also be too much time for some guests to spend outside.
I don’t have video of our speeches, so I’m going from memory—forgive me for not being specific! We tried to encourage our speakers to keep things short, though we did go beyond the typical father-of-the-bride/best man/maid of honour options and extended an offer to all of our parents to speak.
Mr. Dragon and I decided to get started with all of the speeches, as everyone looked like they were finished with the buffet line. Our readers spoke one after another rather than dragging it out. I’m not sure if we infringed on anyone’s dinner or anything like that, but we didn’t hear any negative feedback!
Ashley started things off by reading Falling in Love is Like Owning a Cat (with a little jab at everyone for forgetting her during the ceremony!). I thought she would be nervous, but she was completely calm and well-spoken. She even threw in a reference to our “three kids,” a.k.a. our kitties at home! It was a really cute way to start things off, and a great save from forgetting to include the reading during the ceremony.
Mister Mister and I celebrated our one-year wedding anniversary this past weekend. I can hardly believe it’s been one year—it either feels like a lot less because it seems like just yesterday we were running around planning a wedding, or like a lot more because of all we’ve accomplished in this past year. Not only did we get married last November, but we bought a house in April and conceived a child in May. While everybody did say, “Oh, wait to have kids, enjoy each other first, blah blah blah,” it was pretty neat celebrating our anniversary at almost 7 months pregnant with Mister Mister’s son.
Since our anniversary fell on a Monday, we had the bulk of our celebration on Saturday. The day was busy for me—chiropractor, haircut, trying to vote and ending up picking up a mail-in ballot instead—but after all that and a nap, we headed down to Anna Maria Island to eat at one of our favorite restaurants from when Mister Mister lived down there, which was also the site of our rehearsal dinner last year.
We also exchanged gifts on Saturday. I got Mister Mister a somewhat sentimental gift to go with the “paper” theme—the book “What I Love About You” by Kate and David Marshall. It’s filled with prompts like “If we’d first met in a comic strip, the thought bubble over my head would have said…” and “One of your most irresistible physical features is…”
At 112 pages, it’s not exactly easy to fill out. It took me two months of slowly answering the questions—some of which I had no answer for so I goofed around, others that were pretty repetitive—on breaks at work. I was afraid to bring it home lest he find it. And while I was feeling sheepish about whether it was a dumb gift, he loved it! Though, he did at first think it was just a regular old book somebody else had written until he started going through it.
For his part, he got me an awesome gift: A print from the Dark Hall Mansion Yellow Submarine ’68 set. We both love the Beatles, and he knows I love quirky art, so this was an amazing gift. The quality is really awesome too, printed on archival paper and numbered. It earned a special place in our hallway, across from our gallery wall of wedding/honeymoon/pet photos.
On Monday (our actual anniversary), we opted to eat out again, but only because I was starving and the meal I had planned to cook that night was supposed to take an hour. So we went out for burgers, and then came back and ate our year-old wedding cake.
“Looking for cute and affordable favors? Put the treat of your choice in adorable boxes from Weddingbee Favors!”
We decided Summer 2012 that we better start taking some pictures. A friend of mine from high school is incredibly talented with a camera, and was starting her own wedding photography business, so we took her up on her offer to shoot us! Because Lake Grapevine is beautiful and Mr. Manatee’s family has a boat there, we decided it would be a fun and unique place to shoot. I was also inspired by adorable (and lets face it, super fratty) pictures such as these.
|Photo credit: Krystyn Hogan|
Hey there, lovely people!
Okay, so as the title of this post suggests, I could really use your input on something (don’t be scared…it’s nothing serious!). You see, I have pretty much every aspect of this wedding pictured in my mind, save for one very important thing: the reception decor.
I’ve got hundreds of mason jars I’ll be putting candles in, I’ll have a dozen or so manzanita branches for some centerpiece variety, and I have a few ideas up my sleeve for what to do on the ceiling in what could only be described as a bland and generally underwhelming reception space. When we first booked it, I had visions of the space being a clean slate that I could transform in any way I wanted. Except now that we’re ready to start actually putting down some simoleons for stuff, I’m feeling a little hesitant about making decisions.
This leads me to the current question at hand: I’m stuck on what to do for our table linens! First thing you should know: We’re buying our linens instead of renting them, because (SURPRISE!) buying is cheaper than renting. Who woulda thunk it? Obviously, I don’t want to be stuck with thirty tablecloths forever after the wedding is over, so we’re going to try and sell them on eBay or something after everything is said and done.
Right now, I’m stuck between two options: sage green tablecloths or white ones.
My first instinct was to go with the green because the entire reception space is already white, and I figured bringing a colored tablecloth in would really jazz the space up. Because, I mean, how good do these look?
…the bees envy me. But not you bees…the bees in “My Girl,” of course.
I always knew my dance with my dad would be to “My Girl” by The Temptations. That has just been “my” song for as long as I can remember. My dad was a bit more hesitant though, thinking that it has been overdone. But, the more we thought about it we realized, who cares? It is my fist and only wedding, so why does it matter? We decided to just go with it, despite a small concern that it is fairly upbeat. My mom told us just to dance around and we will be fine. Easy for her to say!
As it turns out, my mom was right. We did just dance around and get completely lost in our father daughter moment. I am glad we chose to dance to “My Girl” because it is just one of those songs that I can sing at the top of my lungs to and not care who is watching.
In almost every picture I am either laughing or singing along like some bad karaoke.
First of all, thank you so much for all of the encouraging words and messages regarding my Grandma- I was completely engulfed in a cloud of upset and, even though I don’t actually know you guys, just having all of your support really improved my outlook Monday afternoon. So, thanks!
Secondly, the weight of the world was lifted yesterday when two things occurred- McGlovin and I stuffed, stamped and mailed our wedding invitations and then, on a complete roll, went downtown and applied for our marriage license! Yess!
Bam—licensed to be wed!
True story—it took us longer to find the Office of Marriage Licensing than it took for us to get it (15 minutes to find, two minutes in the office to apply). We had filled out the application online, so when we got to the office (where there was absolutely no line) all we had to do was provide our IDs and Social Security numbers, and promise that we weren’t cousins or already married. Somewhat awkward, though—the girl started out her spiel, “Please raise your right hand. Do you swear or affirm, blah blah blah…second cousins…blah blah blah…previous marriages…blah blah blah…please swear or affirm.” And we both looked at her for a second, looked at each other, and managed a confused, “I…swear?” We were completely not prepared for that formality.
gal12 is selling “Thank You” and “Just Married” parasols, available in pink, purple, white or blue. She is asking $15 each.
Have a wedding item for sale? Post it with pictures in the Weddingbee Classifieds, and you might see it featured on the blog!
Other great items for sale:
It’s official, y’all—this Miss is now a Mrs.!
Our wedding day started bright and early, as MOH L and I woke up early enough to straighten up the hotel suite. We stayed up a little too late the night before, so it was a bit difficult to wake up so early, even though I was extremely excited—what can I say, I love my sleep! The beautiful view from our room did make it a little easier, and I took the time to snap a photo of the sun coming up before vendors started flooding in and our morning began.
Last time you heard from me I was sitting in our hotel suite, waiting my turn for hair and makeup, while MOH L worked on the music playlist for the morning. I promise we were having much more fun than this picture portrays. You might also notice the monogrammed shirts we are wearing!
You already know that I did not receive a ring along with my proposal. But what actually happened??
It began like any other Saturday night. We headed to a friend’s house to hang out. Much fun was had, and we somehow ended up being there until about 5:30am. I was nodding off on the couch, so we decided to call it a night and head home.
When we arrived back at our apartment, I was still so sleepy but the ever-clever Mr. Whale noticed that the sun was about to come up. Our balcony faces east, so we can sit on our couch and watch the sunrise without even going outside. I agreed to watch the sunrise before we went to bed.
As he often does, Mr. Whale then picked up his guitar and started playing a few different things. While the sun was coming up, he started playing a song that he wrote about me. (It’s so good, and I’m not just saying that because it’s about me!) Near the end, we both got a little teary. When it was over, he just looked up and, out of nowhere said, “Will you marry me?”
!!!!! I’m pretty sure I looked something like this (except a little more tired):
Image from Angie Animated / Image from the movie Tangled
I love the cocktail hour during weddings. It’s such a nice time to catch up with old friends and family members and indulge in a drink (and sometimes a few hors d’oeuvres too) before the rest of the reception, when you are often seated at an assigned table. Mr. Wallaby and I are planning a lot of fun surprises for our outdoor cocktail hour—stay tuned! While we plan out those activities (we may or may not be constructing a set of cornhole boards!), we’ve also been discussing what to serve during the cocktail hour.
Swizzle sticks add some pizzazz to cocktail hour.
Here’s the kicker: our venue allows us to bring our own alcohol! They provide the bartender(s), and we bring all liquor and bar essentials (stemware, cocktail napkins, mixers, etc.). They don’t even charge a corkage fee. The more brides I talk to, the luckier I feel that we found a venue with such a budget-friendly alcohol policy. With our Costco membership, Mr. W and I can afford to buy much more liquor than we could if we hosted the wedding at a venue that charges a premium for drinks.
A pretty severe storm had just blown through the area around our venue, Pippin Hill Farm and Vineyards, and there was a break in the weather. As soon as I saw a little sunshine, I wanted to get outside and take some pictures. For all I knew, we had the only break in the weather in front of us. The ceremony we so wanted to have with the Blue Ridge Mountains behind us wasn’t going to happen, but maybe we could get a few pictures of the view that sold us on our venue. Goodness knows the pile of dirt that had been there when we signed our contract wasn’t the selling point!
Of course, first looks come before portraits, so I anxiously waited for Mr. Mink to be put in position so we could have our first look. Just as I felt butterflies when the men arrived at the venue, I was nervous for this moment. It made no sense. Mr. Mink is the kind of guy who says you look great in pajamas. I knew his reaction would be sweet and positive…
…and it was.
Once everyone was in place, I called out to Macs to see if he was ready. After a double thumbs up, I took a deep breath and told myself not to start crying before he’d even seen me.
I just love this photo of Macs. His best smiles are always when he’s caught off guard.