30 December 2008

Happy Holidays!

We hope that everyone had a lovely holiday and has a very happy New Year! We had a great holiday - we are lucky enough to have both of our families here in Arlington so we got to visit each of them for all holidays! We celebrated Hanukkah with my family on the 23rd and then again last night (a night late, but the thought still counts!). We spent Christmas Eve with Jason's family where we got to meet our little niece, Esme, for the first time (see the picture below - I don't think Jason has ever looked so elated)!!! Then, we had Christmas morning with my family (so Jake didn't have to wait to open his presents), spent the afternoon with the Bells, and then the evening with my family again at an Andrew Lloyd Webber concert! We plan to have a low-key New Year's Eve together - just the two of us and Rufus... and maybe a bottle of champagne and a slice of celebratory cake!

Here's Jason and Esme
Jason and Esme

And Jason with Rufus and me with Ella Grace

Wedding planning! We have now signed contracts with Thorpewood and their caterer and have paid deposits to each! So it is official now!!! Allison, my dad, Jason, and I will all go back up to Thorpewood on January 10 for a tasting. We have to make a wish list out of this GINORMOUS list of food that the caterers sent to us - we have to pick three of each course to try!

The biggest news is that I have found my wedding dress! Allison and I went shopping for it this weekend... and bought it straight off the rack! It is quite pretty - It is a little fancier than I envisioned, but it's really pretty and I'm really happy with it. The only thing Jason knows about it is that it is ivory instead of white. I decided on the ivory because it has a slight antiquey look to it that I like a lot. So far quite a few people have seen it in person: Emily, Mrs. Bell, Cindy, Mrs. Paul, Karen, and my dad. Eddie and Erin have seen a picture of it (on a model). The only person that has seen it ON me is Allison... and I think I want to keep it that way til wedding day! I am going back and forth about wearing a veil. I ended up snatching up a discontinued one that looks pretty with my dress that I bought just in case I decided to wear one. If I don't, then I'll probably wrap my flowers with it or something. Needless to say, it was cheap so I wasn't too concerned about buying it even if I ended up not wearing it. I managed to get a great price on the dress as well which I'm thrilled about because now I can spend more on a photographer! Basically, any money that I save will go towards a better photographer.

We also found a darling flower girl dress at David's Bridal that I really want the girls to try on! It is SO cute. It is a short-sleeve, empire waist, ivory chiffon dress with a teeny little stripe of beading around the bust. And it is SO flowy! Flowy is the number one priority for the girls - they LOVE flowy dresses!


02 December 2008

Aaaand... we have a date!

October 25, 2009! It’s a Sunday, so we’re planning to have an early afternoon wedding – maybe noon or one o’clock. We get the place for 8 hours total, so we’ll spend about 2 hours setting up and then 6 for the ceremony and reception. Which means that we will be done by 8 or 9 pm which is just magical because I won’t last much past then – especially with the craziness of wedding festivities.

And the place for the date is Thorpewood! I’m thrilled and Jason is too. The paperwork is in the works – so it’s not really final yet, but it will be. We will go back to visit in the spring to do a tasting as well as check the place out when the leaves are full since they were bare-naked when we saw them! The menu looks good and they even have a pastry chef, so we may even get the cake through them to make things easier. However, I will still taste cakes elsewhere… yes, yes I will!

Allison, Karen, and my grandma took me to try on dresses this weekend – nothing really jumped out at me. It was all just too… fancy. I think some people really enjoy trying dresses on and showing them off… this one lady there really loved it and was looking at herself in the mirror for long periods of time and talking about each dress… but it just makes me curl up into a ball. I do not like being put on display but I guess I need to get used to it!

I also want to make a shout-out to Mrs. Hilary Pool Strickland who passed many, many bridal magazines and books on to me. Thank you so very much! Those things are not cheap - I really appreciate your generosity! PS - Congrats on becoming a doggie-mommy over the weekend!!!

A final note - it is strange to call Jason my fiance now. It is SO exciting, but I feel like such a snob using the word. I can't figure out if it is because I feel like I'm flaunting the fact that I'm engaged (and thus acting kind of like a snob) or just because it is such a fancy-sounding word (and I don't really use fancy words)... hehehe...


24 November 2008

Picking a spot...

On Saturday Kaitlyn, Allison, my mom, and I got up early to go look at a few places for the wedding day. It was off to Maryland and into the snow covered forest. Our first stop was ThorpeWood, a wonderful wooden lodge tucked into the middle of nowhere. They are a non-profit organization and they have like 432 different places to hold the ceremony. The lady who runs the place has done over a hundred weddings and really seems to know what she is doing. Seems like the perfect place, we loved it.

We headed off to Frederick Maryland for lunch and to discuss other wedding topics. We stopped at a little place on the main street and had some excellent food. After warming up and chowing down we headed on to the next place, which the owner wouldn't even come out to show us in person (a bad sign if you ask me). It was very different, it wasn't in the woods, it was made of wood, but it just didn't have any personality like Thorpewood.

We looked up a few more places closer to home and traveled down to see them, we weren't very impressed to say the least. Though the last place we stopped was very close to home and worth looking into. Still we are very taken with Thorpewood and it will most likely stay at the top of our list even after we visit a few more places.

More updates to come.


Thorpewood, Continued

Just a little more on Thorpewood... It is so BEAUTIFUL. We got out of the car after driving along an unpaved, uphill winding street to see the lodge covered in snow. It was snowing up there! We walked in and it looked gorgeous - better than the pictures online. The fire was going strong in its stone fireplace and their tables (all made out of wood, including the legs) were all set up for a Thanksgiving meal. Thorpewood is actually a non-profit organization that helps underprivileged kids in the area - they were having a Thanksgiving meal for some of the kids and their family. It was really touching to see.

Not only is the lodge made of wood, but the tables and chairs, including their legs are too! They already had fall-like decorations set out - lots of pumpkins and fall leaves. AND! They use one caterer who would handle all linens, flatware, silverware, and even the cake! Best of all? The tables that were set out had ORANGE napkins! Perfection! At the restaurant that we went to in Frederick about 20 mins away to eat lunch, our waitress suggested the caterer they use and spoke of the lady by name ("she's a genius and everything she does is perfection") - which was really great to hear!

There are a bunch of different outside locations that we can hold the ceremony, including a beautiful open space near a pond, over a stone bridge, in a pine cathedral (a space in between pine trees that is shaped like a cathedral and has pine benches), and a few garden locations. The lady that showed us around really knew what she was doing so I know that I won't have to worry about things going wrong which is helpful.

AND! They are dog-friendly so little Ru could be our ring-bearer! Hooray!

If we end up getting married there, the date of the wedding will be October 25, 2009.


P.S. This is the picture that made me fall in love with the place:

17 November 2008

Back from LA

I just got back from LA... and it was a productive visit! It was a stroke of good luck that the trip I had planned before I knew I'd be engaged was to visit two of my closest friends - meaning I just so happened to be visiting two of my bridesmaids, Erin and Maitha!

We may have picked out the bridesmaids dress. I think we’ll look around a bit more, but we all liked the one we found… and best of all – it’s orange! Yes, I’m having an orange October wedding which probably won’t surprise most people!

I also tried on a few dresses – one of which I liked, but I am going to continue to look around.  I learned that I really like lace and that I don't really like satin (too fancy)... but that still leaves a lot to be discovered. I'll definitely be looking around more. In fact, Allison set up a dress appointment for the weekend of Thanksgiving so that my grandma can come!

Erin and I did a lot of browsing in the book store and got some neat ideas... my favorite of which is a cute little suit that a couple put their dog in that said "ring bearer". I hope that wherever I get married they allow dogs so we can do that! Otherwise, we're sort of out of luck in the ringbearer department- there are no little boys in our life - just little girls!

Jason and I have made up our initial guest list - we want a small wedding, but because of the larger the size of our families and very close family friends we've grown up with, it's not going to be quite as small as we envisioned.  Not the end of the world!

I was really miserable when I got back home yesterday - I had taken a red eye flight that left LA at 1:00 am, had a 3 hour lay-over in Atlanta, and got to DC at 1:00 pm. Miserable. I took a 4 hour nap and when I woke up, I saw a beautiful bouquet of flowers! My parents sent them to us with the sweetest note and signed it "Your Parents/Soon to be parents in law" - Yay!


11 November 2008

We're Engaged!

As of November 8, Jason and I are engaged!

Here’s the story: We took the week of Veteran’s Day off and planned to spend Friday night through Tuesday at his parents’ lake house and then I planned to fly out to LA to visit two of my girlfriends – Erin and Maitha – for the rest of the week.

We got down to the lake on Friday night. It was a peaceful time with just the two of us and Rufus. On Saturday night, we built a fire and made s’mores, which I had been looking forward to for a long time! After I made my first one, Jason slyly made sure my fingers weren’t sticky. He mentioned that it was a beautiful night and I looked up at the sky because I remembered it being a little cloudy and when I looked back down, he was down on a knee! I squealed, jumped up and down, and repeated “ohmygod!” multiple times. Apparently, I never really said yes. But did I really need to? Nahhh… I was too caught up in the moment! I’m really glad that he waited until it was just the two of us (and Rufus!) with no one else around. It was perfect, simple, and sweet – just my style!

Instead of staying until Tuesday, we left the lake early on Monday morning so that we could meet my parents for dinner that night to tell them our news before I leave for LA. They congratulated us and told us they were very happy for us. They stuck around while I called my grandparents. My grandmas both squealed – it was too cute. Grandma Coray asked what Jason’s last name is and told me that she wanted me to take his last name. For all of the time that we've been dating (4 years now!) I was opposed to the idea, which Jason did not like, but dealt with. However, now I’m thinking that I just might. We shall see!


together foreverrrrrrrr