Posts filed under ‘randomness’

Gifting Talents

Hiya! Just popping my head back in to share a really great experience that I had at a last-minute backyard wedding a couple of months ago. I realized how much society is wrapped up in the idea that weddings take a long time to plan and cost a lot of money when I had the privilege of attending a wedding that was planned in just a few weeks time, was inexpensive, and was full of love and joy.

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It started when my husband’s coworker, Jamie, asked him if we were doing anything on August 20th. He replied that we weren’t and Jamie said, “Dru and I are getting married, we’d like you to come.”

A bit of back story, Dru and Jamie had been together for close to 10 years. He had asked her to marry him a few times and she had said no each time until this summer when she looked at him and said, “let’s get married”.

He got our mailing address and a few days later a nice homemade invitation arrived. The invitation featured some of Dru’s artwork and asked us to bring ourselves, a dish to share, and a flower from our garden.  Our flowers made up the beautiful bouquet she carried as her son walked her down the aisle.

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The wedding was in their beautiful backyard overlooking Puget Sound. In the weeks between the day the decided to get married and the wedding Jamie worked hard on the backyard and house, getting it ready for the big day.

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The food was wonderful, everyone brought something for the grill and a dish to pass.

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Jamie and Dru reached out to friends with talents.  For instance the cake was made and decorated on site by a loved one and the entertainment was provided by work/motorcycle riding friends who happen to have a classic rock band.

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The invitation indicated that they didn’t want gifts, but knowing that they likely hadn’t hired a photographer I brought my camera with me to the wedding hoping to get some good photos.  They had also asked another friend, Mark, to take photos.  Between the two of us we were able to capture their day quite well.  Mark sent me his unedited photos. I spent a lot of time editing both sets of photos and selecting the best of the bunch for an album for Jamie and Dru.  IMGP5547

I ordered a 8″ x 8″ 50 page book from AdoramaPix. I used them for our photo guest book and a book I gifted Mr P on our wedding day.  What can I say, I love the thick photo pages.IMGP5548

The pages are printed on archival quality Kodak Lustre photo paper. Adorama’s unique binding process means that a two page spread is printed on one piece of photo paper- eliminating the gutter or seam.  Pretty!IMGP5539

To say that Jamie and Dru were over the moon for this gift is an understatement.  They have enjoyed showing off their big day through Mark and my photos and let me know they will treasure the album in the years to come.  The real gift for me was to be there an experience a simple, joy filled wedding with people we care about.

Have you ever “gifted” your services or talents to a bride a groom? Are you using friendors at your wedding?

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November 2, 2011 at 1:45 pm Leave a comment

Protected: A Pretzel Unwrapped

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July 10 two thousand ten…

…friends and family converged in Seattle united by Pretzel love. The ceremony music was lovingly performed by friends and family and the Mass brought a  tears of joy from friends and family alike.  There was yummy beer and (of course) a wide assortment of pretzels. We rocked hard and our legs were weary from dancing.  Most importantly,  at the end of the day there was…

Mr and Mrs Pretzel (drawing courtesy of our very own Miss Sewing)
When I last left you I was a “Miss” and was emerging from the Wedding Room to spend time with our families and out-of-town guests.  The weeks leading up to our wedding were slightly hectic but  filled with great memories.
I hoped to write a wedding day post, but time (and computing equipment) got away from me.  Had I written that post, I would have been sure to thank all of the people who encouraged, supported and inspired Mr Pretzel and I along the way.  Specifically, I wanted to thank my family/friends, the Seattle  Hive especially TPHoliday (love you girl!), and my fellow Bees- you girls are like family.  I would have given a shout-out to my date twins, Mrs Turtle and Mrs Pudding.  Most importantly I would have told Mr Pretzel how ‘effing excited I was to become his “Wiff” and for him to be my “Hu’band”.  But alas, time slipped away from me.
Waiting to be introduced… Photo by Jason Tang- friend of bride and groom
Today, just over a week and a half after getting married, the wedding room has transformed into a bona fide office/guest room (much to Mr P’s delight).  Pretzel kitty Cassanova, Pretzel kitty Cheese and I have officially moved into the townhouse that Mr P and I purchased together a year ago.  Mr P is adjusting to having kitties in the house and the kitties are slowly adjusting to their new digs. We have returned to work and are slowly moving in my belongings/unpacking boxes in our “free time”.
I have a sneaking suspicion that our pro photos might take a while to come in.  I am not going to disappear though. There are so many pre-wedding things that I want to share in the meantime.   I’ll leave you with a sneak peek from our kick a$$ photo booth.
Photo booth by USnaps.com
Love ya
Mr & Mrs Pretzel

July 22, 2010 at 11:48 am Leave a comment

Greetings from the Wedding Room

Hi Hive!

I’m here, poking my head out of the wedding room for just a brief minute to say “HOLYCRAPWE’REGETTINGMARRIED!” I’ve been holed up in here for the past month working diligently on crossing items off of those to-do lists.  It hasn’t been too hectic but it has been steady- Mr Pretzel and I have filled every available minute these past few weeks working on both the material and the spiritual preparations for our wedding. We worked hard to get 90% of the work done before the holiday weekend when our first guests started arriving.  Mr P and I took this whole week off of work and while we have a few loose ends to tie up, we also have set aside most of the week for hanging with our families- you know, the important stuff.

So, you’ll have to forgive me if I don’t post this week, trust me, I’ll be sharing lots of fun events and projects post wedding/pre-recaps.  Here is just a glimpse into what we have been up to:

Getting Legal
Best bridal shower ever
Getting Banded

Finally finished!

Making Chalkboard Signs

nom, nom, nom

a couple of project from the Silhouette

Hookay! I am off to hang with fam.  Be talking with y’all soon!

Bee Hugs!

Miss Pretzel

July 6, 2010 at 10:11 am Leave a comment

The Terrible Twos

Two as in under two months to go until the Pretzels wed!  Much like a toddler, I went from a happy, low(er) stress, wedding planning Pretzel to an easily irritated, stressed out Pretzel knot almost exactly at the two month mark.  *insert sad face*

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I’ve dubbed the two month mark the terrible twos.  Exactly at the two month mark I had a calendar reminder for us to apply for our marriage license.  In Washington you need to get your license between 60 and 4 days before the wedding (yes there is a 4 day waiting period to get married).  This milestone made the wedding seem so close and our to do list seem so long. Despite my best intentions the control freak side of my personality made a big appearance.

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It didn’t help that the invitations weren’t done yet, that work was chaotic, or that we had a whirlwind weekend trip to Indiana smack dab in the middle.  I was out of sorts, picking fights over small insignificant details, stressing that there wasn’t enough time in the day.  Problems seemed larger than they were and I found myself frequently frustrated.   Poor Mr Pretzel, his steady and supportive reassurances that “It will all be ok” couldn’t reassure me.  I.was.stressed.  At one point when I was worked up about something completely silly he wrapped his arms around me  immobilizing me, suppressed the urge to laugh, and repeated over and over that it will be ok. Finally I relented.

He was right,  after two weeks, the terrible twos have passed.

Some things that have helped me get through this spell.

Get something done- anything!

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The biggest stress reliever was getting our 150 hand made invites out the door. (post coming soon about our labor of love) But Mr Pretzel was also great about helping me tackle other wedding tasks to help cut down the big list.  Mr P also insisted that we track progress towards completion on our giant to-do-list to make us see movement even if the item wasn’t 100% complete yet.

Focus on someone other than you or your fiance

Meeting the new addition to the family

On our trip to Indiana two weeks ago we got to meet Mr Pretzel’s new nephew and celebrate when his youngest brother (Mr P’s best man) got married to Bridesmaid S.  Just Sunday we celebrated with Weddingbee reader TPHoliday and her groom at their couture fairytale wedding. In less than two weeks we will celebrate Bridesmaid H’s Las Vegas wedding.  All of this celebrating is a lifesaver.  It was wonderful to no think about our wedding but to focus all of our love and attention on another bride and groom.   Not to mention that holding a baby does wonders for your stress levels.

Be Patient

Not only did I need Mr Pretzel’s patience, but I also needed my own.  I was aware that I was out of sorts and the more I tried to not be the more I was.  Make sense? Yeah it makes no sense to me either.  But I found when i was patient with myself things worked themselves out.

PS… I would be  a total fail blogger if I didn’t share some photos from the two wonderful weddings that we attended.

May 15th Fort Wayne IN

Best Man M and Pretzel Bridesmaid S’s wedding

M&S drove away in S’s dad’s Model A

S’s ribbon wands were a hit!

The Pretzel’s clean up pretty good

May 23rd Seattle WA

Weddingbee reader and friend  TPHoliday was a vision in her unique silver gown

The Pretzels looking more relaxed with the terrible twos behind them

I was completely unprepared for the terrible twos, it was an emotional roller coaster that I didn’t expect.  I’m very thankful that Mr Pretzel helped me keep perspective and that I was able to focus on other people.  Was there a time-frame when your stress increased significantly? one month, two months, six months?  How did you get through that time?

May 24, 2010 at 6:45 pm Leave a comment

Vacation Poor

Mr Pretzel and I are equal in so many ways, but vacation balances is not one of them.  He is vacation rich, I am vacation poor.  Usually this isn’t a problem.  In the past I’ve had just enough vacation to join his family on vacation for a week, visit our relatives, etc.  I knew way back in September when her proposed that 2010 would be vacation heavy and I started to plan out our vacations.

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I worked backwards from the wedding- setting aside a whole 2 weeks; one pre-wedding, one post-wedding.  We have a lot of guests flying in to Seattle the week before the wedding and Mr Pretzel and I really want to be able to spend time with them. Then I set aside some time to travel to my FBIL’s wedding.  At this point I was doing ok I had 1-2 days unallocated. My planning was paying off.

You know what they say about the best laid plans…

  1. When some Bee’s decided to go to Vegas, I was so tempted. I checked my calendar and saw that I had enough extra vacation days to join them. Yay! I swarmed Vegas with the others.
  2. Mr Pretzel’s family offered to throw me showers in Fort Wayne IN, so I had to “borrow” a day from the post-wedding time.
  3. Two months ago I got glorious news that Bridesmaid H was tying the knot in June in Vegas.  There is no way I would miss that, so another couple days come out of my post-wedding time off.

Last week my manager called me up and asked why I had requested more time off that I had in my vacation bank.

BLINK

BLINK

BLINK

“What?” I had just finalized our Mini-moon plans (coming soon!) and I wanted the whole week prior to the wedding off as well as Monday through Wednesday after the wedding.  “What do you mean I am short?” Well short of vacation time, I’m definitely short in the vertical height arena.

6 hours. 6 effin’ hours.

I am 6 hours short of the vacation time needed to have a stress free week before and a mini-moon after the wedding.  I quickly turned into a tight pretzel knot of stress and frantically texted Mr Pretzel to tell him I might have to work 1 or 2 days the week before the wedding.  His answer was short and sweet. “No way- take unpaid time off”.  Oh.  That sounds simple and very practical.

My heart stopped racing and I talked with my manager about taking unpaid time off for the 6 hours that I am short.  “No problem” he said as I felt a huge weight lift off of my shoulders.

Later that day Mr Pretzel ran into my manager.  Pretzel Manager apologized to Mr P for making me take unpaid time off but Mr P just smiled and said. “That’s ok, but I wasn’t going to let her work the weekend before the wedding else she’ll be a giant stress ball.” Awe,  I love that how considerate he is.  He also promised not to work the week of the wedding either because he knows it would stress me out.  So immediately after the wedding my vacation balance will be a big fat goose egg (until I accrue more) and Mr Pretzel’s will be over 40 hrs.  *Sigh*  Its hard being the constraining factor on vacations.

Is your vacation balance constraining your honeymoon plans?  Did you decide to work the week leading up to the wedding or not?

April 24, 2010 at 3:08 pm Leave a comment

The “Wedding Room”

ssshhhhh! Don’t let Mr Pretzel hear you call it that.  To him it is still an office/guest bedroom, but between you and me it’s become the Wedding Room.

I noticed a fair amount of interest in the concept of a Wedding Room when I merely mentioned it in another post.  Let’s be honest, it was destine to be a Wedding Room from the start.  Right before Mr Pretzel and I got engaged we bought a house.  The guest bedroom was extremely empty, with just Mr Pretzel’s desk in it.  He and I both knew that it would remain empty like this until I moved in after the wedding.  As I started to accumulate wedding stuff (i.e. the boxes started arriving from my online shopping) I tried hard to keep all of it corralled at the duplex that I rent. Soon the boxes and Rubbermaid tubs of crafting supplies started to grow into an obstacle. Plus there was the problem that when I as at our townhouse I never had the supplies I needed to do a project.  Without a word, I started to move all the boxes over to our townhouse and up into the guest bedroom.

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I’m the first to admit that there was absolutely no organization going on.  As I got packages in the mail I just dropped them in the “wedding room” in their original packaging. With every box I quietly dropped off, Mr P was getting increasingly anxious.  The room was a hot mess and I was the only person who understood the rhyme or reason to it, well sort of.  The straw that broke the camel’s back? I needed something and could not find it.  As I wadded knee deep in wedding “stuff” and dug through boxes Mr P stood at the door and said, “For the love of God, can we organize this?”.  Organize we did.  I’ve corralled, stacked, and labeled my wedding stash.  We set up a crafting space.  Recently, Mr P bought me a giant sticky flip chart so we could make a Master Wedding To-Do list.  It’s a little scary, but reassuring at the same time.  So, as long as you promise not to call it the “wedding room” (so Mr Pretzel feels better) I’ll take you on a tour.*

4507269065_54539f344a.jpgMy craft table and the wedding craft shelves. The mess in the lower right corner? That’s Mr P’s to recycle/shred pile

Close up of the organized shelf.  I spy: Flip flop basket, Mason jars, box of adhesives a la Miss Sewing, box or Ribbon a la Miss Ribbon, a Gocco and tons of supplies, and lots of colored tissue paper

Part I of the Master to-do list. More wedding stuff next to the shelves and Mr Pretzel’s desk.

Close up of the pile next to the shelf. I spy: Birdcage for cards, bouquet bases, milk glass, moustaches, curved wood lantern holders and many many more Pretzel projects.

Part II of the Master To-Do List

The “wedding gift closet.”  Mr P and I are waiting until our households are combined to start using our gifts.

Do you have a “wedding room” or “wedding closet”? What tips do you have for controlling the sprawl of wedding items?

*Please notice the wall color- not.our.cup.of.tea- too busy to paint walls yet, but trust me post wedding those walls will be a drastically different color.

April 12, 2010 at 5:08 pm 1 comment

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