June 25, 2010

Looking Back: Flower Market Flop

I realize that I haven't blogged about our floral plans.  Way back when I still had months and months until the wedding, I had mentioned making fabric flowers. As those months dwindled and turned to weeks, that simply wasn't going to happen.  I had neither the time nor the energy to make fabric flowers.  We decided that the best course of action would be to head down to Los Angeles' Flower District to purchase fresh flowers and arrange them ourselves the Thursday before the wedding.

Stepmom Doxie and I woke up bright and early on the Saturday after my bridal shower.  The wedding was in two weeks, and we knew we had to finalize our floral plans so we set out to drive down early, choose and place orders for our flowers, make a quick Ikea run and then head home.  With a vague theme of easy, casual, gardeny, throw-them-in-a-vase-and-call-it-a-day, a list of flowers that I loved, and an idea of our budget, we figured we'd have no trouble at all.

This was my first trip to the Flower District, and I have to admit, it was a little bit overwhelming.  Though, the fact that it was the day before mother's day definitely added to the chaos.

Flowers and people EVERYWHERE!  Buildings that spanned entire blocks!  Definitely not a place for anyone with allergies.

On our shopping list for the day was:

And whatever else we may have found that would coordinate.  

Well, we arrived, searched, searched, and searched.  Nothing. NOTHING.  Hundreds of thousands of flowers, and the only red ones were carnations, roses, and gerbera daisies.  Apparently, because it was right in between seasons, variety was low.

We wandered around for about an hour, talked to a handful of vendors, and still no luck.  One vendor had red ranunculus, but they were pretty sad looking.  I was so disappointed.  Imagine:  two weeks before the wedding, and our one plan for flowers completely fell through.  We left, dejected, and made our way to Ikea.

All was not lost, though!  Ikea came through majorly.  Two weeks until the wedding, and our centerpieces had been completely re-imagined thanks to impeccable Swedish design!

Did you have to reinvent any of your ideas close to the wedding?  How did they turn out?

June 24, 2010

Looking Back: Showered with Love

Once May rolled around, my life went into super-wedding-overdrive.  I remember the waking up the morning of May 1st, realizing that we were quickly approaching the end of a thirteen-month engagement, and that our wedding was just around the corner.  It scared the crap out of me.  It was at that moment that the wedding butterflies decided to take permanent residence in my stomach.  I had so much to do.  It was overwhelming, the list was so long.  I had people to coordinate, projects to complete, details to finalize; to be honest, I'm not sure how I made it through that month!

But that first weekend in May, albeit full of stress, was also the first time I felt like a bride; it was the weekend of my bridal shower.  It was then that I finally understood that other people were excited about our wedding. It wasn't because of the details that I had slaved over for the past year.  No, they were excited because they loved us and genuinely wanted to wish us well in our new life together.

My shower, hosted by my mom, my aunt and my grandma, was perfect.  Absolutely perfect.  I spent the day with all of my favorite ladies, some of whom I hadn't seen in a long time, and just soaked it all in.

The shower was at a small cafe in Tulare, CA called Hazel's Kitchen.  They closed down for the Sunday and filled their front lawn with tables, umbrellas, and an eclectic variety of antique chairs.  Their food was spectacular: an array of sandwiches (The best being chicken salad, yummm), angel hair pasta salad and fruit salad.  We played games, visited, opened gifts in traditional bridal shower fare, and had a fantastic time.

So, I took a ton of pictures to correspond to this post, but sadly they were lost.  Instead, I'll leave you with images captured by others kind enough to upload to facebook!

My mom spent hours making fabric flowers to place atop ink pens for the centerpieces/favors.

The setup was so cute, and the weather was perfect. 

This is one of my favorite pictures of my mom, me, and my grandma.

I couldn't believe how generous people were!

Our tasty, tasty cake.

As cliche as it is, I honestly felt showered with love.  I am extremely thankful to everyone that made it out.  Spending time with my loved ones allowed me to de-stress and refocus.  Though my list of to-do items didn't get any smaller, I remembered that our wedding was supposed to be about family, friends, and love.  All of the other stuff was just bonus  : )

Next up:  Flower District Fail

June 3, 2010

The Metal Box

Inspired by Mrs. Dolphin's post about her most unexpected wedding gift, I thought I'd share a gift that we received from my Aunt and Uncle.  It's amazingly unique and sweet, and I figured most of you would be able to appreciate it.

Everything was wrapped up in a pretty travel-themed hat box.

On top of the tissue there was a book, covered in red wrapping paper and with a bookmark holding a page.

The bookmark read, "Before opening your box, please read the story 'The Metal Box.'"

So, in front of all my new in-laws, I read.
From Chicken Soup for the Couple's Soul:

The Metal Box

     Last weekend, we celebrated my parents' fiftieth wedding anniversary.  This morning, they left on a long awaited trip to Hawaii.  They were as excited as if it were their honeymoon.
     When my parents married, they had only enough money for a three-day trip fifty miles from home.  They made a pact that each time they made love, they would put a dollar in a special metal box and save it for a honeymoon in Hawaii for their fiftieth anniversary. 
     Dad was a policeman, and Mom was a schoolteacher.  They lived in a modest house and did all their own repairs.  Raising five children was a challenge, and sometimes money was short, but no matter what emergency came up, Dad would not let Mom take any money out of the "Hawaii account."  As the account grew, they put it in a savings account and then bought CDs.
     My parents were always very much in love.  I can remember dad coming home and telling Mom, "I have a dollar in my pocket," and she would smile at him and reply, "I know how to spend it."
     When each of us children married, Mom and Dad gave us a small metal box and told us their secret, which we found enchanting.  All five of us are now saving for our dream honeymoons.  Mom and Dad never told us how much money they ha managed to save, but it must have been considerable because when they cashed in those CDs they had enough for airfare to Hawaii plus hotel accommodations for ten days and plenty of spending money.
     As they told us goodbye before leaving, Dad winked and said, "Tonight, we are starting an account for Cancun.  That should only take twenty-five years."
Ann Landers

Umm, this is Mr. Doxie wondering why I'm taking pictures for my blog instead of going to sleep.  C'est la vie!

Anyway, when I had finished reading the story aloud, I pulled the tissue paper back to unveil the gift.

Tucked inside was a small, vintage metal box.

I opened the box to find 100 $1 bills!

And under the bills, a poem:  
"The Doxie's"
May 22, 2010
Your vacation fund's been started just to help you out.
We're sure it will keep growing, we're sure without a doubt.

It's a wedding gift that's special and also unlike few.
It's a lifetime of saving's while having fun times too!

With love on your wedding day,
Aunt Lori & Uncle Gary

And of course my mom had to chime in with, "And from what I hear about Mr. Doxie, you guys will be in Hawaii in no time!!"  Our faces turned about a hundred shades of red.  

This was definitely our most memorable wedding gift, and even one that we may consider copying as future wedding guests.  

What was the most creative wedding gift you received?  Or, if you're not yet married, have you given any super imaginative gifts?

June 2, 2010

Acknowledging Injustice

The day Proposition 8 was passed in California was the one time that I truly felt let down by my state; I couldn't believe that we would allow such a giant step backward.  It is equally mind boggling how, a year-and-a-half later, the law is still in tact.  I know that one day, hopefully soon, we will be able to look back and wonder how the majority was so closed-minded and selfish.  But I digress.

The point of this post is not to spark a debate, but to share how, on our wedding day, we brought to light an issue for which both Mr. Doxie and I are passionate.  I know that it isn't uncommon in the wedding world for couples to recognize how unjust laws against same-sex marriages are.  It's a bit of a different story, however, in the conservative area where our wedding was located.  We honestly weren't sure how the gesture would be received among our guest list.  We wanted to do something that would be prominent enough for our guests to take notice, but still subtle.  As sad as it is to admit it, I know that we had guests in attendance who likely feel as strongly against same-sex marriage as I do in support of it.

In the end, we decided to go the same route as the Sprinkles and make white knots for our guests to wear and take home. 
I ordered a small ceramic heart bowl from RedHotPottery on Etsy, MOH Erin cut and tied the ribbon and I made the sign.

Everyone should have the right to tie the knot

While we will forever look upon this day with great joy, we cannot help but feel sadness for our friends and loved ones who, under current legislation have had their right to marry stripped away.

The White Knot is a symbol of marriage equality.  Regardless of your orientation, please wear this knot to show your support for basic human rights.  We hope that one day soon, everyone will have the chance to experience the love and happiness of their wedding day.

We believe in marriage equality

We set up the white knots and sign on our welcome table along with our guestbook and programs so that guests would see it and take one if they felt so inclined.  Photo was taken by MOH Erin while we were setting up the morning of.

Though most of our guests didn't take a knot, I'm okay with that.  I know they were noticed and I appreciate that some people did choose to wear one.  I think it was the perfect gesture to acknowledge something that is important to us without offending those who disagree.

Have you decided to incorporate something into your wedding that may be controversial?  How did you handle it?

June 1, 2010

The Doxie Programs: Keeping Our Guests Informed

Though the DIY process for our programs was not quite as involved as our invitations, they still caused me a bit of stress.  You see, I had a pretty good idea of the way I would have liked our invitations to turn out before I started to make them.  This was not the case with the programs.  I knew I wanted a booklet, but as far as the design or what to put in them?  No idea.  In fact, other than the names of the bridal party I really didn't know what to write for our programs.  A timeline of the day?  Well, that required me to finalize the ceremony.  So much involved, and with about a month left until the wedding I figured I should probably get started.

First things first, I gathered my inspiration.  I searched Weddingbee for posts on other Bee's programs and fell in love with the sewn booklets made by Mrs. Cream Puff.  Seriously, so cute.  I tried a few mockups and, while cute, just took way too much time.  Not to mention I was worried my sewing machine would have a hard time sewing through two layers of cardstock and multiple layers of printer paper.

After a bit of fiddling around, this is what I came up with.
A small booklet, approximately 6" by 6", folded instead of sewn and bound with baker's twine.  I had planned on incorporating the date into the cover design, but I liked the simplicity of the heart.

After folding and goccoing 120 covers, it was time to figure out the words that would fill our little booklets.  For this, I turned to Spaniel's amazingly helpful program post

Even with Spaniel's help, it took forever to get our wording just right.  I came up with enough content for 8 pages. 

Page 1 was our introduction. 

It means so much to us that you are celebrating with us today.  Whether youv'e travelled 1000 miles or 10, we sincerely appreciate the effort you've put into being here.  We are lucky to have been blessed with such amazing people in our lives!

Most of you are aware of our special circumstance:  Due to the immigration process, we were required to become legally wed on October 26, 2009.  It was a lovely ceremony, but we always knew that we would "seal the deal" by exchanging vows in front of the people that we hold nearest our hearts.

Today is the day that we will consider ourselves to be married, and today is the anniversary that we will celebrate.  After many years have passed, we will look upon this day with fond memories because we are able to celebrate our relationship with everyone that we love.

Thank you again for coming.  We are forever grateful for your love and support.

Page 2 listed all of our immediate family whom weren't a part of the wedding party

Page 3 listed the members of our wedding party.  Please ignore dirty fingernails... gross!

Page 4 was our ceremony outline, including the important event music.  

Page 5 is the poem we chose for our reading: i carry your heart with me by ee cummings.

Page 6 was for various announcements, including when to use our wedding bubbles, a reminder to visit the photobooth, and an extra thank you.

Page 7 was a dedication to our loved ones who have passed away.  This was very important to us; there isn't a day that goes by that I don't miss my big brother and my grandparents.  I know that Mr. Doxie feels the same way.  

Page 8 was a bit of a cop-out.  I couldn't think of anything else I wanted to add, so I didn't add anything.  I'm not sure how many people even noticed this page, to be honest.

I laid each page out in Illustrator, then figured out in which order they needed to be on each sheet so that they would be in the correct order once they were folded and assembled.  Not gonna lie, I needed to make a tiny booklet, number each page and then disassemble for this step.  Printing and cutting each sheet was the most time consuming part of this project.

As soon as all the covers were dry and all of the pages cut and folded, it was time to bind them.  I could have done something fancier, but I really wanted to keep it simple and conserve time.  I precut the baker's twine, and simply tied it around the center of an unfolded booklet.  I tried to keep the string as taught as possible, and then I knotted it at the bottom.  I cut the excess off so that about an inch of string hung from the program.

Once they were all finished, they went into a basket I picked up from Ikea.  The ribbon around the basket was supposed to be red, but I ran out and didn't feel like making another trip to the store.  

All in all, I really like how our programs turned out, and I heard a few guest comment on them, too.  They were a lot of work, though!  

Did you make your own programs?  Did you make a booklet, too, or did you decide to do something a little different?  Were they a complicated DIY?

May 25, 2010

We're Married (Again!)

All Professional photos by the fantastic, I-can't-say-enough-about, so-good-he-deserves-his-own-blog-post, Thomas Delgado.

As a whole, this past week has been absolutely amazing, culminated by a wonderfully perfect day.  I'm not saying it was without stress or a few blips, but to see a year's worth of work come together beautifully, and to have everyone we love gathered in one area to support our love was so magical.

I didn't get a chance to write to you before Saturday, Hive, but I will take this opportunity to thank you for all of your support.  Planning our wedding wouldn't have been the same without you.  You were there when I needed you with much appreciated advice and kind words;  I'm so grateful to be a part of such a wonderful community!

I can't wait to get the rest of our professional pictures back because I know they're going to be fantastic.  Until then, I'll fill you in on some sweet last minute projects that turned out to be some of my favorite details.  But first, our minimoon!  We're headed down to Los Angeles for a week of relaxation and fun.  It's definitely something we've been looking forward to!

So, until next time, MRS. Dachshund signing out!

May 10, 2010

Our (Pre)Ceremony Soundtrack

I haven't been around much lately, and rather than continually apologizing I'm just gonna lay it out on the line:  I'm probably not going to be around much until the wedding is over.  At 12 days out, I still have a million things to do and I'm stretched tooo thin.  But!  That doesn't mean I can't sneak a post in every now and again on my lunch hour!

One of our (many) pressing issues right now is our wedding music.  We've booked our DJ and we're finally meeting with him tonight to finalize everything... that means we had to make some serious decisions.  Choosing our playlists was a pretty daunting task; we both have pretty strong opinions about music and those opinions are complete opposites.  I like folksy indie music, while Mr. Doxie tends to like more traditional wedding music.  Read: boring.  In my opinion, anyway.

It was really bringing me down trying to incorporate all the songs he wanted, because I felt that they didn't go with the feel of the event that I had spent so many months trying to establish.  Finally, after a few arguments, he relinquished all music control to me and things went much smoother.  I realize that makes me sound like an insensitive and controlling jerk, but for the record I did incorporate all the songs he really wanted.

Anyway, I love the songs that we've chosen.  (Even the ones he picked!)  There are so many amazing songs, though, it was hard to narrow down the ones that we would actually use.  And then came the task of choosing which would be played when.

I decided that my absolute favorites would be played while our guests are seating before the ceremony, and of course during, with our most favorites being the closest to the beginning of the ceremony.  Does that make sense?

So without further ado, our ceremony playlist:

Lou Reed with Gael GarcĂ­a Bernal- If You Rescue Me  (From The Science of Sleep soundtrack)

I loved this soundtrack more than I loved the movie (although it was pretty decent, too.)  This song is so charming.  And!  On the soundtrack there is also an acoustic version of this song sung by the adorable Linda Serbu from whom we adopted our kitty a few years ago.

Plain White T's- 1, 2, 3, 4

This song has no meaning to either of us, I heard it in a restaurant a while back and thought it was sweet.

Damien Rice- Cannonball

One of my favorites.  It's one of those songs that I can listen to on repeat and be content.

The White Stripes- We're Going to be Friends

This song seriously makes me perma-smile.  I wish I wasn't at work so I could listen to it now.  Strangely enough, I'm not a huge fan of The White Stripes... maybe I like this song because Meg is asleep instead of banging on the drums?

Jason Mraz- I'm Yours (Acoustic version from the EP)

I know Jason Mraz isn't exactly indie, but this song is one of my favorites.  'Specially the acoustic version.

The Moldy Peaches- Anyone Else But You

I've loved Kimya Dawson since highschool and from that love grew a love for the Moldy Peaches.  It's totally awesome that Juno gave them so much exposure, but I still like to be on the "I liked them before they were cool" train  : )

The Beatles- In My Life

One of both of our favorites.

And the last of the waiting-for-the-wedding-party-to-get-their-act-together songs:

Barry Louis Polisar- All I Want is You

Back when Mr. Doxie and I were long distance, I came home from a long day of work to find an email embedded with him singing this song to me.  Mr. Doxie is not the world's best singer, (<3) but it was probably the sweetest thing ever.  It comforted me when I was missing him.  We had to include it in our day.

I'm hoping a few people arrive early enough to enjoy all of the music we've selected.  Maybe we'll run a little late on purpose to make it through the playlist, which runs just under 30 minutes.  : )

Up next, our VIPS walk out to the songs that REALLY matter... the real ceremony soundtrack.

Was choosing your various playlist as daunting a task as it was for me?  How did you and your SO settle any disputes?