Archive | March, 2011

75 Days-The Wedding Nazi

28 Mar

We’re getting married in the courtyard of a stunning mansion and having our reception in the ballroom. One of the MAIN reasons I chose this venue was because of picture opportunities.

Aside from actually being able to marry Jeremy, the 2nd most important part of the day for me is the pictures. The lobby of the main mansion is the PERFECT spot for a First Look.

Remember how our lovely venue let us know there would be another wedding on the same day and at the same time as ours?

Well… Apparently that means we are NOT ALLOWED inside the mansion for any pictures. What?

Calmly I suggested letting the other bride take pictures out in the courtyard while we took pictures inside for 15 minutes so we could both take advantage of all the lovely areas on the venue’s grounds. What response did I receive?

*Plastered fake smile* “Well, we wouldn’t want our other bride interrupting your day in any way, and we would expect the same courtesy from you.”

“I completely understand, the last thing I would want would be to ruin her day, I simply would like to schedule a time around 8:30am to take a few shots indoors, as this was one of my main reasons for choosing the mansion.”

“Right, right, of course.” *dramatic pause with fake smile* “As I said, we wouldn’t want your day interrupted and we expect the same of you. Everyone would be setting up at that time and we wouldn’t want you in the way. I can certainly talk to the other bride’s coordinator and see.”

30 minutes later

“I’ve spoken to the other coordinator and she doesn’t know her bride’s schedule so you can take pictures outdoors from 8:30-9:30am and if just maybe there is a small moment of time where there isn’t traffic indoors and I can’t see the whites of the other bride’s eyes, I’ll snag you so you can go inside for one minute to take a picture and run out. Okay?” *fake smile* “I think this is a wonderful compromise.”

WHAT? WHAT? Did you hear what you just said, woman? At this point I’m so disappointed and sad that I’m not going to argue with her. I may have almost cried.

I’m not picky about a lot of wedding details, but pictures are a HUGE deal for me. We’ll see how this goes, cross your fingers! I’ll keep you updated.

Despite this disappointment, the weekend was quite fun: Jeremy and I had great time with my family, planned our wedding shower with some wonderful women, registered for more kitchen essentials at Macy’s, did a little shopping and Jeremy bought me a yellow purse! Gasp

For those of you who know me at all, I HATE yellow. It’s pretty on flowers, babies, and other people, but NOT on me. When yellow gets anywhere near my face some crazy metamorphosis happens and I immediately turn into one of the following:

Needless to say, this is not the most attractive look for anyone.

Sadly, Jeremy loves yellow. So, as a compromise he has attempted to squeeze yellow items into my wardrobe and now my accessories. Amazingly, I LOVE the purse and it’s no where near my face, so all is well! 🙂

Plus, it’s from Fossil and we LOVE fossil. We also got our groomsmen gifts there, but I won’t go into too much detail in case any of them happen upon the blog. 

Have a great day and watch out for the wedding Nazis!!!

80 Days: Wedding Party, Colors, and Attire

23 Mar

Here is just a glimpse of what came in our packages!

Yay!! I can’t wait to see my precious little cousins and handsome nephews walking down the aisle with these! My cousins, well, I don’t know the proper wording for this relation… They are my cousin’s twin daughters… So, 2nd cousins? 1st cousins once removed?
Eh, anyways, they are SO precious! My nephews are 3, 8 and 13 (or will be by the wedding date). Do you know how hard it is to figure out how to give a special position to an 8 and 13 year old in a wedding?
The three year old was easy: Ring bearer. The eight year old will be a ring bearer too, even though he’s bordering on the age limit. The thirteen year old is the hardest. He’s too old to be a ring bearer, but he’s too young to be a groomsman. But we want him standing up with the rest of us because it’s a big family affair.
Really though, our wedding party is strictly family: siblings, brothers-in-law, cousins, and nephews. There was NO WAY we’d leave my oldest nephew out, but his age has made discovering the best position difficult. We’ve pretty much settled on junior groomsman but really wished we had a junior bridesmaid to match. Oh well, all the family will have a part, and that’s what matters most!

(If you have any suggestions for cool roles for my 13 year old nephew to play, I’m willing to listen. The only thing he can’t be is an usher, we want him up front with everyone throughout the ceremony. )

This last week has been all about the wedding party. We picked out vests, shirts, ties, and tuxes at Men’s Wearhouse, which is FAR more helpful than Tuxedo Junction and has color matching with David’s Bridal which made the process a TON easier. Perhaps they are “too helpful”, in fact they are rather pushy. Unless you intend to rent every possible item them will let you know how tacky your options are, thus encouraging you to rent more and in turn spend more.

After a whirlwind oc coercion Jeremy and I realized we had ordered too much… Fortunately, we saw these pictures and got some fun inspiration.


Click the photo for a link to the entire wedding blog!

We at least know that the guys will be in black tuxes and at this point we’re thinking suspenders with “pool” skinny ties. They’ll definitely wear jackets, but we’ll take them off for some cool pictures and they don’t have to wear them during the reception.

My wonderful bridesmaids have all already ordered and picked up their dresses which are “apple red”.  This is just an image taken from the David’s Bridal website and not, in fact, any of my bridesmaids. 🙂

Yay for getting things done!!!

A final note of advice: Please don’t let yourself be coerced into something you don’t want or you don’t think is right for the wedding.  If the etiquette doesn’t line up exactly or the style is unique, but you and your groom love it, go with it. 

You should ENJOY your big day and the planning!

85 Days-Remembering the Proposal

18 Mar

I’m getting wedding fever.  My work day was crazy hectic, but a good hectic.  I had tons of students come in today and make decisions to better their futures and pursue their lifelong dreams.  It’s exciting to have the opportunity to be a part of that. But it’s been nonstop from the time I came in.  When I was finally able to sit down for a moment and breath I started daydreaming.

I’ve been reading engaged friends’ blogs, chatting about their countdowns, receiving wedding/marriage advice, and getting our last addresses together so that we can send out invitations.

 Then it hit me.

AAAAAHHHHHHH!!!

Up until, well today actually, I’ve had a hard time believing all of this was real.  It was like some big wonderful dream that I’m terrified to wake up from. 

Today, finally today it’s becoming a reality. 

After knowing each other for over ten years, dating for almost 6, and being engaged for just shy of 14 months, it’s hard to imagine that the wedding is ACTUALLY happening.  But it is, I’m marrying the man of my dreams, my best friend, and the person I admire most in this world in just 85 short days!!! Praise God!!! (Really though, praise God!!) 

I’m on my break at work right now and all I really want to do is hop in my car, pick up Jeremy from work, and make these 85 days FLY BY! :-)I’m feeling like I did the day he proposed when all those months of dreaming finally became a reality.

Want to hear that story (or read it)?

I have to begin this little tale by telling you that the week before the proposal  was one of the worst ever.  I had anxiety attacks and cried almost every day. In addition, the weather turned sour up north and I had the option of driving home at night in a torrential thunderstorm or on the ice that was sure to form the following day. I took the rainstorm and truly didn’t think I was going to make it home alive.  Jeremy had a rough week as well and on his way to my parents’ drove 45 minutes before he realized he had taken the work keys that his employees would need in his absence.  He basically added 90 uneccesary minutes to his journey and barely made it home in time to leave again so we wouldn’t miss our reservations. Someone didn’t want this proposal to happen.

On to the good stuff:

Jeremy had planned a dinner for us and asked me to dress up.  He’d purchased a little red dress for my birthday a few months prior, so I decided this would be an excellent opportunity to wear it.  Jeremy loves my hair wavy and since I had time, I made myself up.  We hadn’t had a fancy date in quite awhile.

We both came to visit my parents that weekend and when Jeremy arrived in town he took me to the Trio at the Four Seasons. It was a very romantic dinner and we were treated royally. Jeremy was especially sweet and made me feel I was the most beautiful woman alive

After dinner we drove to a local park and took a walk under the stars.  After a little while he asked if I wanted to dance.  (How could I refuse?)  After we had been dancing a few minutes, he spun me around, took both of my hands (with damp eyes), and dropped to one knee.  After expressing his love, excitement for what God has in store for us, and joy at the prospects of marriage, he asked to marry me and pulled a small white box from his jacket, assuring me that my father approved. 

Nedless to say, I said yes (several times!)

The whole time he was talking I thought for sure I was dreaming, but here I am 14 months later with a beautiful ring on my finger and 85 days from our wedding.

It seems life is better than any dream.

*Sorry for the poor quality, it was a cell phone picture. But I think the excitement is pretty obvious. 🙂

86 Days: Conflicts, Hair, and UPS

17 Mar

The venue where Jeremy and I will be married recently informed us that there would be another wedding happening on the premises at the SAME time as ours. Special. 

What do you say to that?

Uh, no this is MY wedding day not theirs?  

Basically what this means is there will be less parking, fewer guest rooms, and smaller windows of opportunity for picture taking.  On top of another wedding the same day, at the same venue, at the same time, the annual biker rally will be in full force. Looks like we’ll be trying to find hotel rooms on the outskirts of town because our venue booked quickly.  Because God is good and gracious there were a few rooms available so that the bridesmaids and I will be able to be there in the morning to get ready.  We’ll be married at 10am so we don’t exactly have all the time in the world to prep.

As I mentioned in a past blog, I’ve yet to decide what to do with my hair.  I thought of all manner of options:

I was non-chalantly talking over all of the ideas with Jeremy when he told me he liked me just as I was and didn’t want me to look like an entirely different person on our wedding day.  Translation: Please don’t do a crazy hair-do.  I had spent all of this time fussing over making myself as elegant as possible which meant, to me, as different as possible.  But HELLO, Jeremy didn’t fall in love with a big bun and froofy flowers, he fell in love with the straight-blonde-haired-average-Jane.  I’m going to embrace that, why wouldn’t I?  He’s going to look just like the man I fell in love with, so I should look just like the woman he fell in love with! 🙂

Now the questions become how do I “spice-up” my everyday look without overdoing it and who on earth will come to do my hair at 6:30am?

Remember that package that ended up in Timbuktu?  Well, it finally came to the right town and twice they’ve tried to drop it off around 1pm… Well I’m at work at 1pm.  UPS doesn’t care. If they try to drop it off the 3rd time unsuccessfully they will ship it BACK. BACK??? NOOO!!! The stinkin’ package has been traveling the country since March 2nd! What do I do???

Because Jeremy is the best fiancé ever, he arranged to pick up the package from a distribution center in town. Though, this is slightly disconcerting; as far as UPS is concerned, Jeremy has NO connection to me.  Yet, somehow he persuaded them he had the authority to pick up the package… This means my neighbor could have come to my door, grabbed the UPS sticker, called customer service, and picked up my package without me ever knowing… Neat.

On the bright side, I just ordered ADORABLE address labels from Etsy that match our invitations PERFECTLY!  One set for invitations with my last name, and one set for Thank-You cards that say Jeremy and Erica McNair.  It looks WONDERFUL! 🙂  The colors match better in real life. 🙂 (Of course these all needed to be slightly edited so the world couldn’t see our parent’s names, venue address, and home address). 

A few words of advice:

1. Book hotel rooms early and make sure there are plenty of available rooms for guests.

2. Don’t over-do your hair and makeup so much that your Husband-to-be hardly recognizes you, he’s marrying you for a reason.

3. Keep tabs on your UPS packages, customer service is far too easily persuaded.

Day 89-Wedding Ready and Workout Routines

14 Mar

Less than 90 days!!! YAY!  This countdown may cause me to burst into moments of hysteria periodically as I become aware of how quickly our wedding day approaches.  In fact, I dreamed that we were married last night but instead of driving to the airport for our cruise, Jeremy wanted to stay and hang out at my parent’s house…. Awkward.

Anyhoo!  If you’ve been keeping up with the blog I have been faithfully devoted to P90X in the hopes of having a rockin’ bod come Honeymoon time. My college roommate came to town for the weekend so I needed to fit in my workout Friday because I knew we wouldn’t be running on Saturday, instead we got pedicures and went shopping.  Please don’t judge me and assume I’m some uppity city-girl with a complete disregard for budgeting; this is only the 3rd pedicure I’ve had done in my entire life and I didn’t even buy anything when we went shopping!  Plus, I have a pretty intense budget that the pedicures were factored into! 🙂 Also, we shopped at the mildly-sketchy, pot-scented, ultra-cheap, Entertainmart.  It’s fantastic! They have thousands of ultra-low priced movies!  As I was looking at various workout videos I found this:

 

BAHAHAHAHA!  I just can’t express to you how grossed I get when I see guys that are anywhere near this buff.  It’s a little bit nauseating to be entirely honest.  Don’t get my wrong, I love that Jeremy is SO much stronger than me and I love that the man is muscular, but I also like that he has a neck, can touch his elbows together, and doesn’t walk around like an ape. Even the main guy on P90X is a little much for me. 

Back to my workout routine:  Friday I had planned to do Cardio X but it was a BEAUTIFUL day and I haven’t been running in ages.  Through college I had developed a pretty consistent running schedule and worked my way up to about 6 miles.  I know that’s not a ton, but it was an accomplishment for me.  Towards the end of last year my sister and I had decided we were going to train for a ½ Marathon in January.  But I was just not feeling well and in November I was sick of being tired and weak all the time so I finally went to the Doctor. After over a thousand dollars in lab work and a small cancer scare, I discovered that I was in the end stages of Mono and the Dr. could do nothing to help.  So glad I paid you for this.  His advice, “Sleep and stop running your body can’t handle it.”

I’m sorry, WHAT

 So, I haven’t been running since November.  Friday that all changed, I figured I’d do a 30 minute run.  My neighborhood isn’t unsafe but it’s also not free of crime, so armed with my cell and some pepper spray, I set off!

DANG!  30 minutes is a LOT when you haven’t run in almost 5 months!!!   Truly, I probably only ran 25 minutes because I stopped at one of those outdoor-workout-station-things that my townhouse managers conveniently hid at the very back of one of the units.  I have to say, I felt SO much better after that run than I typically do after a P90X video.  There is something oddly gratifying about post-workout soreness. 🙂 Aside from one sketchy guy, a ridiculous teenager who shouted out his window (I’m sure hoping that I would hear his absurd remarks, then turn adoringly and notice his attempt at a beard, eco-friendly car, hear his “indie” music, and fall in love), and a paper hand with the name “Timothy” on the back, it was a pretty safe and uneventful run.

Conclusion, no exercise beats a good run.  Unfortunately, it’s now dark in the mornings (thank you time change) so I guess I’ll have to keep up with my P90X. 🙂  Honeymoon body, here I come!

Day 94- I Love Mail & Correct Addresses

9 Mar

I don’t care if it’s a card or a huge box of wedding items, I love personal mail!  Now that the wedding is getting closer we’ve been ordering lots of items: invitations, fans, bridesmaid gifts, ring bearer pillows, flower girl baskets and more, which has meant LOTS of mail. 🙂

I think one of my favorite things about purchasing online is having the ability to track my orders. 🙂 I suppose I have another similarity to them. While I may not obsessively check my community board conversations, I DO obsessively check my order status’ on UPS, FedEx, or USPS.  I don’t judge, I don’t care who ships it as long as I can track it!

Well I have a package from David’s Bridal that was just 30 minutes from my house yesterday morning and out for delivery, YAY!!!  It claimed that it would be at the house by this evening!!!  Well, when I got to work to check the order status it had shipped to someplace called, Leon Valley, which I have NEVER heard of in my life.  WHY??? I have so anxiously awaited this package, checking its order status twice daily, it was supposed to arrive TODAY!  Now it’s out in the boondocks somewhere FAR FAR FAR away from my home. *sigh* (Please forgive me if this is your hometown, take no offense, I’m just being dramatic)

UPS notified me that: Postal code listed for the receiver is incorrect. UPS is attempting to obtain correct postal code and complete delivery. / The address has been corrected. The delivery has been rescheduled.

Incorrect? Incorrect?  I know my address, thank you.  So I looked at my receipt which conveniently does not have my address listed.  Next stop, the order confirmation email. 

There, in all its glory stands my address wrong zip code and all.

Now I’m embarrassed…

Somehow in the excitement of my order I exchanged a 6 for an 8 in my zip code and now my package is floating around in Leon Valley.

Oops.

Dear UPS person,

Please don’t hate me, I’m just super excited to get married. I suppose the thrill has made me a bit scatterbrained. I would greatly appreciate if you would still send my package to me.  

Sincerely,

AlmostaMcNair

P.S. I love you Jeremy!!! 🙂

95 Days-Planning a Wedding is a Dangerous Ordeal!

8 Mar

As you may have read in the last blog, Jeremy and I may not have the most meticulous wedding planning agenda.  Yesterday we decided it would be a wonderful idea to look at tuxes and wedding bands.  The last thing we expected was to be injured or caught in a mall fire.

We’ve known what colors we wanted for the men’s tuxes for awhile but haven’t determined where to rent them.  We went to Tuxedo Junction, which I would not recommend! No one ever came to help us, the place was dirty, and they have a small variety of colors in super odd patterns.  

Next stop, Zales.

I’m slightly ashamed to do this, but a theknot.com community member deserves kudos.  Now a crazy number of people have replied to my question and one gave me a morsel of fantastic advice:  Zales makes a thin white gold band to match the ring exactly. It is inexpensive, around $150.

After our anticlimactic trip to Tuxedo Junction, the exuberance of the Zales Professional Jewelry Consultant was suffocating. (Over the phone she corrected someone to let them know Zales didn’t have sales people it had Professional Jewelry Consultants. )

But, THEY HAD THE RING!!! It’s simple, low priced, and I love it!

I adore my engagement ring and don’t want anything to take away from it.  So, this plain band is PERFECT! 

The Professional Jewelry Consultant made very clear that she wanted to make my engagement ring as sparkly as possible to “keep the haters hating”.  It seems that she’s an overexuberant cleaner too. The last step of the “sparkling” process is to steam the ring.  Well, steam from boiling water+metal=PAIN.  My ring was SO hot that it burned my finger! GAH! 

Amazingly, being burned on my finger was the least dramatic moment of the evening. Next stop, Fossil.

They recognized us when we walk in the door; in fact, the sales associate said “It’s great to see you guys again!  Last time you were here I remember you were getting your rings sized.” Wow.

As a side note, if someone would like to offer us a gillion dollar gift card to Fossil, we would be much obliged. 🙂

From Fossil, we grabbed a bite (or several) to eat and then it happened… Strobe lights started flashing all over the mall, fire alarms were blaring, and MASS CHAOS INSUED!

Or not… Truly everyone stayed rather still, looking around, waiting for a loudspeaker, and wondering if this was real.  After responding similarly, Jeremy and I slowly began walking out of the mall.  We smelled smoke, our pace quickened; we saw smoke and started walk/jogging, ducked under the Barnes and Noble gate as it was closing down on us, and raced to the car, periodcially choking from the smoke.

Moral of the story: Wedding planning is dangerous!!