Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Just because I'm actually on top of things at work

For once, in a very long time, I've done a good deal of work today and actually have real downtime... not made-up like most of my downtime is. Technically it's still made-up because at this stage, with light at the end of the tunnel, I should be working my butt off tying up loose ends.

So with that in mind, I'll only throw out a few things unload all the things that have been floating around in my brain. I've been thinking about details and what they'll look like. The whole affair is going to be pretty understated, but that doesn't mean it has to be boring. So I've mentioned a lot of things in the past that might end up on the gift table or escort card table, and I found a great example of the type of thing I've been thinking:
Now I can't find where it's from :( No one sue me please. But anyway, it's simple and definitely rustic and it's got the white jug and burlap and I think it's great. And simple! I also found a fantabulous example of the milk jug (and more watering can!!) usage:
Not into the colors but love the effect. I'm set with what I want as centerpieces... remember?

(but don't forget wine bottles)

But the point is I was very happy to see milk jugs somewhere. Still contemplating doing one on each side of the alter... on either side of the fabric backdrop... remember??
Bunting is also huge right now, and if I felt like it, I could always add some here and there; not exactly like it would be horribly difficult:
Makes me want to see everything all put together, ya' know? Not sure what needs to be added to this space. Not much, it's gorgeous and clean-looking and we want to keep it classic and uncluttered, but I want to add tasteful rustic touches... sooo, it'd be nice to see it all together and know if things like bunting would be too much. I'm gonna' go with probably too much, look how classic that fabric backdrop looks and it's got absolutely nothing else around it!

And lastly, Kyle and I have been toying with the decision of what to hand out at the ceremony as send-off fodder. See, our venue doesn't allow us to throw things unless we want to pay extra for the clean-up. Not that I mind paying extra, but they were sort of like, 'Just don't throw stuff.' And I was like, 'Whoa, sorry.' No big deal, I'm reminded of my cousin's wedding at which we all received these little sachets of tiny candy hearts... and I ate them all before the ceremony was over XD

So what are the options? The increasingly-popular bubbles or little bells or sparklers.

Sparklers are gorgeous, but there's the fire hazard of course, not something I feel like worrying about, and I might get in trouble for the ash or something. And I'd like something the kids can participate in as well. Also it'll be day time when the ceremony concludes, so, the effect is kinda' lost.

I need to explain something real quick too: We're not having an end-of-the-night send off... we'll be partying long after everyone else is gone, AND once we are done, we're going back in the same shuttle and to the same hotel as everyone else! So, no cute classic car for us, there's no need, so there's no need for an end-of-the-night send-off.

Moving on! My mom and I think Kyle as well are on board for little bells:

My mom thinks they're very sweet and they are. Our friends Mia and Dan just used them at their wedding as kissing bells (they didn't have a send-off either, not at the end of the ceremony nor at the end of the night, just bells during the reception)...

But there's gotta' be a but right??

BUUUUTTTTTT... I looooOOOoove the sound of knives on glasses as the bride-and-groom-kiss-signal. And I don't like the idea of bells as much as either of them do. However, I'm afraid Kyle might be even more sold on bells after Mia and Dan's wedding. ESPECIALLY because as of yet, he's really been against bubbles... not manly enough I guess. And of course, bubbles would of course have to be my favorite:

Are you kidding me?!?! For awhile, they had me convinced that bubbles were too cutesy, then I saw these freaking amazing images and I'm re-sold.

I also love the idea of people blowing bubbles before and during the ceremony; bubbles, just, everywhere!

I'm not saying they're perfect either though: people won't have their hands free for clapping... can you picture (or imagine the hearing of) complete silence as we recess down the aisle?? It'll be gorgeous, but everyone will be so busy blowing bubbles they won't be clapping and carrying on! What to do??

So, no verdict yet. I haven't shown him these pictures yet, so we'll see... I'm worried that he's pretty much rolled over about everything as soon I show him a picture and say I like it... He's either the most wonderful, perfect, spectacular, loving, and patient man ever, or he's going to be incredibly unhappy with everything... Or maybe he just doesn't care... Well I'll decide soon if bubble-send-off is worth showing him pictures of and swearing I love.

Anyway, two more things that I don't have pictures of (sorry) so I will make my notes on them brief:
I made muffins to test the different vanilla extracts. The results were surprising! First of all, the muffins sucked! They were all tunnel-y and tough... over-mixed because I had to make the batter first and then further mix in vanilla extracts in separate bowls... way too much mixing, UNAVOIDABLE!!

:( yeah

Anyway, other than that, like I said; surprising! He loved the Bacardi Gold, I loved the Brandy! The Absolut one had boring vanilla flavor and the Captain Morgan muffin had almost no flavor whatsoever. So, we'll probably do half Bacardi Gold, half E&J Brandy. I'm getting the liquor in tax-free DE this weekend to start the real things!! Yay!!!

OK, riddle time: what's better than getting one package in a day??

Give up??

Getting two packages!! Ha! We got our custom seal and our invitation supplies in the mail last Friday! How awesome??!! I was super psyched, and the seal is super awesome, and I am so sorry I don't have a picture, but my camera was being moody and all the pictures were really blurry. I've also already started tearing up the chocolate lotka paper for the trifolds:

The chocolate one in the middle; that's what they look like!! Exciting!! Except that the paper has a lot of natural fibers and they're really tough and strong and make the paper really hard to tear and my fingers are killing me today.

OK, last (for real) I'm talking to a make-up artist right now for the bridal party for the wedding day, as a courtesy, I'd really like to do this if it's reasonable. I'll be talking to her in more detail tomorrow hopefully.

Anyway, I've talked way too long... sorry. But I think a post like this was necessary, I got four hours of sleep last night because I couldn't drift off to sleep till about 2:00 (I went to bed around 11:00) from thinking about wedding stuff. And I've still got this twitch in my left eyelid... it's getting really old.

Did anyone else find themselves excited but daunted by the cliff that is the six month mark?

Friday, May 27, 2011

I'm just excited about the parties!

I am!

I've been thinking about all the little details... well, not so little, like rehearsal dinner, bachelorette party, and bridal shower. I'm going to have to wear something to them aren't I?

Well, I'm sure a lot of you have heard of ModCloth. ModCloth is actually a vestige of my pre-engaged days. I've been in love with ModCloth for a long long time. And so where to get dresses for fancy dress parties seemed a non-issue.

They're well-priced, and cute, and unique. Maybe not the most durable or well-respected dresses out there. They're no Calvin Klein or Ralph Lauren or Armani or Gucci, Prada, whatever, I don't shop at Armani, Gucci, or Prada... ever. Anyway, on to contemplated dresses!!

I think this is the sleekest of the ones I like, and sexiest? Maybe bachelorette party dress.

I think this one is also really sweet though, not sure though if this is sweet, like shower sweet? or fun/spunky, as in bachelorette fun/spunky. The blue one is definitely more sultry compared to this one, and do I want to be sultry?? Or would I rather dance all night like a silly person?

This is the last one I'm debating as far as bachelorette party dress. It's also fun and flirty and spunky. I love the color too, but I also love the salmon/coral-colored one...

This one is a real dilemma! I think though, that I only have to really eliminate one, because I can then use one of the remaining for the bachelorette party and the other for the bridal shower luncheon.

(I haven't talk about it yet, btdubs, the bridal shower that is, but I will. I can tell you one thing though: it is NOT going to be a surprise. I have already made it abundantly clear I don't want a surprise, and it's not because I don't like surprises, because I freaking love them, I DO NOT want the shower to be one of my life's surprises, end of discussion.)

These two more, as dresses, I love... LOVE, but I have no idea where they would fit, maybe I just treat myself?

I love the structure of the first one and the soft pattern and I love the soft folds and the color on the second one.

They're a little too neutral for my personality, but I just love them... maybe I need something neutral for something?? Are there any parties I'm forgetting about? Someone please tell me I have more parties to buy dresses for!

Post reception party?!?!

I also found this one for my Mama!

At least according to her, she loves the charcoal. Did I tell you yet? She got her dress for the wedding! I haven't seen it yet, and I can't find it online, but she's very happy with it, so I'm sure it's great, and it's "gunmetal" colored :)

I just wanted to say my mom is wearing gunmetal to my wedding :D

Well, whatever it looks like, if she were in the mood for keeping a theme going, this one is cool, asymmetrical, but still appropriate!

Finally, my favorite, I think I'm reserving this one specially for the rehearsal dinner:

Isn't it fantastic?!?! I mean, what a screaming color! And it's like it's grecian but also a more modernized version. And so interesting. And fun!

Well, these are just some of my fun diversions on a Friday afternoon. But now I have to go kick off the holiday weekend!

Everyone have a happy and safe Memorial Day!!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011



... Months...

Hopefully, unless you live in Timbuktu, you've gotten our Save the Dates.


Saturday, May 21, 2011

Fly, my pretties!!

What did you do today?

Well, I got up, flossed, brushed my teeth. I took out the trash and did some dishes. I did a load of laundry. You know, usual Saturday stuff.

Oh yeah! I mailed our Save the Dates today!
Kyle didn't want to wait for me to make coffee this morning so he said "Hey, I'm going to 7-11." And it struck me that the post office is right next to the 7-11, so I said, "Hey, I'm going too!" And I grabbed up my stuff and we left.

We got some coffee and headed over to the post office. There was a long line, I wasn't happy about that. But I waited patiently and I got my stamps! I plan on getting cool stamps for the invitations, but I didn't really feel the need to order special stamps for the Save the Dates, I only needed one per envelope, and Save the Dates are casual, right?

Anyway, we set about stamping. every. single. envelope.
Every... single... envelope... Together! Kyle insisted actually :)
It wasn't so bad, but I thought it very sweet that he wanted to help. Especially because it meant that one of us could take pictures :-D And I could look at his sexy arms ;)

Then it was time to take the plunge! I went outside to the drive by mailbox, tried not to get run over, and let them fly!
In installments, because of the weird mailbox chute.
Whoo hoo!! I'm so excited!! This was the feeling I was hoping for. After I finished them, sealed them all, addressed them all, I didn't feel all that excited, then I realized that it was because even when they were completed, they were still just sitting in the living room. Now!! Now people are going to start getting them next week!

So, I will reiterate; if you get one on the mail, and you come to the website on the bottom (thank you veru much!), take a picture of it and you, and e-mail it to me or put it up online and comment the link to me. I'll post pictures of all my wonderful friends and family as they come in!

Eeee!! I can't wait!!

Oh! And one more envelope that went out with all the Save the Dates: the contract and deposit for Bella Manse! Our baker!! Yay!! She'll now be added to our vendor list.

It's for real for real now!!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Ghost in the brain machine

I'm kind of at a loss about what to post about and how to do it...

I guess, I should start by saying that I keep laboring under the impression that I don't feel too awfully stressed about work or the wedding but I've had this twitch in my left eyelid for about three days now, which makes me think I'm underestimating my stress level.

This sunny Philadelphia weather isn't helping either... I mean it's late May, it's pretty cold and I'm convinced the sun no longer exists.

Anyway, I will reiterate, I don't feel stressed, there's pretty much nothing else to do! I mean, nothing major; all big vendors are booked, and we still have six months! Most importantly, I'm still loving wedding planning, the only issue has been trying to convince Kyle of this:

We had our first "argument" wedding-related last night. Those a big quotation marks because there was no raised voices, and not even really any hurt feelings, just a few small misunderstandings, and Kyle saying things like "Well, I wanted to get married in Hawaii."

I've been struggling with the whole blogosphere thing; chances are no one but me is reading my blog, but what if everyone is? And what if I write something about someone that upset me and that person reads my blog? And what if they hate me for it? The question is, do I really care?? Interestingly enough, say I write something horrible about Kyle's great uncle's second cousin, which I would totally never do, but say I did. I'd feel a lot worse worrying about whether or not my mom would be disappointed in me than his great uncle's second cousin. It all boils down to, I want to use this as a venting tool, but I do not want to offend anyone with what's really going on in my head.

And by anyone, I mean my mom... I love you, Mama, I like to act like a good person around you. Truth is I don't like most people and wish to bash them. I won't though, for harmony's sake.

All I will say is that a few names have been added to our guest list by people I do not feel had a right to add them without asking me; they just added the names and then didn't leave me any option to say "Yeah, no, I don't even know that person." Kyle keeps saying "It's just a courtesy" and then goes on and on about how he'll pay for the extra people...

This is when my brains start to boil out of my head. "This is not about money!" I say this with extra emphasis and with an edge to my slightly raised voice every time because he has said it multiple times and every time I have to assure him that I am not offended because of the money that one extra person costs to feed, I'm offended because we should be making the guest list- no one else- and no one else should be adding people without asking me first if it's okay.

That being said, I still also had to yellowpages some addresses that people haven't gotten to me.

But that's beside the point, the point is the one comment that Kyle pulls out that puts this race car into the red zone is "I'm going to end up paying for it all anyway."

He says this in a dejected, self-deprecating way. As if his life savings isn't worth anyone's bother. Then I feel like, 'well, it is my desire to have all my family present that's keeping us local instead of doing a destination wedding.' And then I think 'Whoa whoa whoa, you don't have the right to guilt me about wanting to stay close to my family!' And then closely following this is "It's like a slap in the face when you disregard the help we're getting from my parents." (I say that out loud, check out the cojones on this chick!) and he doesn't have a response to that because he says things thinking only of that thing he said, not how it relates to other things. He doesn't mean to offend. Besides, I believe that aside from what my parents are generously donating to our cause, what he means is that whatever's left over has to be covered by us... translation: him. Yes, yes, I know, I have no money, a very piddly savings, and when it comes time to settle our remaining vendor bills, he's going to be the one coughing up.

This makes me feel bad.
(Obviously I've been reading too much Hyperbole and a Half today... you should too!)

Kyle is taking care of A LOT of things. Photography, I'm still paying him back for, I'm still paying him back for MY dress!! And of course, he's paying for the whole honeymoon. Now, he'll probably get upset with me if anyone from his family reads this and then interprets it as us starving on the streets somewhere. We are very good money managers, don't worry about us! And I have an exceptional record of paying back my debts, I'm not worried about it eventually, but I think making these comments makes Kyle feel better now. I'm not much on instant gratification, so it hurts my feelings when he knows that I would give him all the money for everything, ever, right now if I had it, but I can't... not yet.

Anyway, to sum up our "fight" then, I had to explain to him that when I complain to him about little things, he gets angry on my behalf. I get upset because his dad added another person to the guest list, and he gets mad and starts going on his rants about how if we had just eloped none of this would be an issue. And a lightbulb goes off: you're only upset because I said I was upset, aren't you?! Yes, yes that's it.

The problem became that I do not clue him in on all the little gritty details that I LOVE because I figure they will bore him BUT I tell him all about the things that upset me, because he's a good listener and I can tell him anything, so I tell him so I can feel better. Well, when he only hears the bad stuff, he automatically, and with good reason assumes that I'm in a downward hate spiral of wedding planning. No, I'm just a little upset about this one thing... but I'm in love with this, this, this, this, and this! He says 'Oh.' and I smile and go back to watching TV and knitting my wedding shrug, which I LOVE!

I don't want to talk too much about little details with him because he'll get bored, and I can't not tell him about the things that are upsetting me because he can read me like a book and will then think that if I'm mad but not talking about it I'm keeping things from him which is even worse than fighting over them outright.

Relationships are fun.

My mom says, however, that I cannot expect him to get excited over the things I get excited over anyway. So what I have to do is continue reassuring him that I really am having an awesome time, and that if he's not having an awesome time, he should at least try not to have an awful time, because it's not like I've asked him to do anything horrific, like pick out silverware... yet.

What's the point of all this?? You ask. Well, revelation time: I keep saying (and actually believing!) that I'm happy and not stressed, but this morning I started hearing things!

It started out when I was feeding the dog. I heard my name... whispered... it sounded like it was coming from the basement... no one was in the basement. That freaked me out, but I looked an Bailey and she didn't seem to have any inkling that there was a ghost in the house, and it's very unlikely that a burglar would know my name. So I dismissed it even though I had gotten hot all over and went downstairs to the kitchen to get ready for the day. I turned on the radio and started making coffee... Ya'll I heard my name again! Clear as day, over the sound of the radio. No joke, I was sweating bullets. I don't believe in the supernatural, but I also don't believe I'm crazy, at least not yet, not entirely. I ran (I mean ran, like Flock of Seagulls ran) upstairs and waited for Kyle to come down with me (he had been taking a shower through all of this). He laughed at me of course but the security blanket was in place, so I was fine.

As I said, I wasn't worried about my physical safety because not only do we have very good locks, but a burglar would not know my name. And I also wasn't worried about my house being haunted, I was worried about my sanity!! I mean really?? Once is just a silly story, twice is alarming, dude. I've since been thinking more and more about it, and perhaps someone either next door (thin walls in those rowhomes) or maybe Kyle or our roommate Kenny all the way upstairs sneezed and my very overactive imagination translated it in my brain into my name. "Achoo = Ashley???" I dunno'. This kind of falls apart when I consider that the whisper of my name sounded exactly the same when I was on the middle floor of my house as on the bottom floor... as if it was coming from me and not the house.

Do I have a tumor?? All Kyle said is I better not go all Paranormal Activity on him, because he will kill me before I get a chance to kill him
Ha! This is the alternative, either I was just hearing things and I have a very anxious, jumpy, and overactive mind, or I'm possessed...

But on a much cooler note... My StDs are going away! (Sorry, I HAD to!) But seriously: SAVE THE DATES ARE DONE!!! They're finished, stuffed, sealed, and addressed. They're making a field trip to the post office on Saturday where they'll be painstakingly stamped and sent off to 52 different directions!

For anyone who actually goes to the website listed on the bottom of the Save the Date once you get it, Thanks! that was the point! Now take a picture of yourself with the save the date and e-mail it to me or upload it somewhere (facebook, photobucket, shutterfly, whatever the kids are using nowadays) and comment with a link. I'll post pictures! I would much rather post pictures of people with the StDs than the StDs themselves, because you're more interesting!

What else do I want from you? Hmmm, anyone else stressed but you didn't know it? How were you feeling at the six month mark?

Am I crazy???

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Have you met my attention span??

This is a story about blah blah blah...

I was looking through Mia's wedding gallery again and came to the pictures of the speeches and realized I don't remember a single word of either of them... except when Mia's maid of honor said "I've known Mia for 14 years." This must have been mind-boggling enough to make me forget the best man's speech and then stroke out for the rest of the maid of honor's speech... so I continued through the pictures and I think I'm seeing a pattern:

This picture says "I don't care that you're pregnant Mia, I choose not to see your longing stare. I need to get my drink on!"

I'm totally kidding, I was not trashed the entire night! I am a professional!



(emily's laughing)



sneaky sneaky sir... look at me with my serious face on!

I'm totally kidding by the way, no one could hear her so I pushed the microphone closer to her mouth... get your minds out of the gutter!!

I can't tell you what I'm looking at right here, but it's not anything that exists on your plane of existence.

... it's imaginary and most likely magical!

I wish I had blatant falling asleep or drifting off pictures to show you... 'cause those are always laugh out loud, but I've gotten so good at looking bright-eyed and bushy-tailed in order to not get in trouble for not paying attention, but trust me, I'm not paying attention right now...

I just caught a magical caterpillar!
HEY!! Hey hey hey... this is serious business... let's get pissed!!

Point is I'm thinkin' of scrapping speeches. My maid of honor might not be there and I can only imagine what she'd say about me anyway. Truth is, we haven't known each other for 14 years. Now, that being said, I don't know the format of a maid of honor speech because I've never heard one. All I know about them is that they have to start by telling everyone how long you've known the bride. The longer you've known her, the more crabcakes you get.

Also, I think there's got to be some sort of "I've seen her in her birthday suit" requirement as well... I could be mistaken.

Is it just me, or do speeches take away from drinky/dancey time?? All I remember is that at Mia's wedding, I wasn't allowed to drink my Verdi or steal Kyle's until the speeches were over! What's up with that?? Kyle's known Dan even less time than Mia and I have known each other so he gets, like, no crabcakes, and I'm almost positive he's never seen Kyle naked... hopefully they're not reading this, because they'll remedy that.

This is how it'll go:

Mia: "I've known Ashley for... I dunno', like, 7 years or something..."

Random audience member: "Only seven?! Take away some of her crabcakes."

Mia: "... Hey! Remember that one time--"

Ashley: "OK, stop talking."

(Just kidding, Mama :))

Anyway, this is how Dan's speech will go:

Dan: "Whooooo, how 'bout that bachelor party!!!"

Kyle: "Whooooo!!!!!"

Dan: "Whoo!!! How 'bout that time you helped me finish my basement and we had to sand drywall all day!!!"

Kyle: "Whoo hoo! Yeah that sucked!!"

Dan: "Whoo!!! Yeah!!"

Kyle: "Whoooo hooo!!!!!"

I may be undervaluing their powers of speech, but the moral of the story goes something like this; Mia is the callous one, I'm emotional. Dan is the emotional one, Kyle is callous. To compensate, Dan just jokes about guy things, and I try to crack jokes whenever Mia starts talking in case she gets serious or says something embarrassing and/or callous.

Also, if Mia is in labor as the wedding is going on, neither will be there, so why don't we just go ahead and assume that speeches don't need to be made?! Less talky more dancey!!! It's also less formal; let's eat, drink, and then hopefully the music will start playing as if by magic! This way, everyone can drink when they want to, AND my personal favorite, no one, and I mean NO ONE gets in trouble for walking across the ballroom at some unknown taboo moment, ruining everything! I hope you're not expecting me not to walk across the floor at thee "wrong" moment... Because I'll have no idea what's going on.

Walk wherever you want, whenever you want. It's a free wedding. And that's all I have to say about that.

Is anyone else trying to let go of some of their control freak? Especially if they realize that no one's perfect? Not even the bride??

Friday, May 13, 2011

Detail Oriented

So here we are, on this lovely Friday the 13th (nothing bad has happened to me today... in fact, I think my parents' first date was on a Friday the 13th, or the proposal date or something, always a good luck day to me :)) and we're about 6.5 months out and so I don't think it's too early to start thinking about details. I went shopping with my mama a few weeks ago and we found all sorts of cool stuff and so it made me start thinking about details...

Aisle decoration... Alter decoration... Reception entrance decoration... Cocktail hour decorations... Gift table decorations... So just for fun, here's some more stuff I took pictures of during our shopping trip:

So, I mentioned these on each table, next to the candle glasses and wine bottle on a wood slab... I haven't decided what to put in them, but the good thing is, it would only have to be minimal... but there are other possibilities:

Little milk pitchers!! Little watering cans!!! Oh, and see the bottom shelf of the bottom picture? Half buckets! Half buckets that will hang on doorknobs or aisle chairs and hold haphazardly arranged flowers. I also have to justify though where my love of watering cans comes from... although I probably don't have to; how many of us have driven by a farmhouse porch and seen this:

There are plenty more to be had, just do a google search. It's country, but it's adorable. And the thought is that if we do a large watering can with flowers at the reception entrance or at the gift table, then it would tie in to small watering cans on each table.

But is it watering can overload??

Especially when you consider that I want these at the alter:

So yeah, I don't want to go overboard on the tin Amish novelties. Although they are wonderful.

From my own mental wanderings, I think I've concluded that there doesn't need to be "tie-ins" per se: If I love the watering can, how about one or two watering cans, serving only one purpose, like sitting on the gift table, and then just two milk jugs, on either side of the alter, and then the milk glasses on each table? For the cocktail hour, how about a LITTLE of everything... huge emphasis on the little? This way I can bring in those adorable milk pitchers, have a few more milk glasses, utilize extra wine bottles, add more light with more candles, even throw in a lantern or two??? maybe????

I like the idea of the cocktail hour being a little more schizo. I can do whatever I want basically, and by whatever I want, I don't actually mean go crazy, I just mean incorporating things I don't know how to incorporate anywhere else! Basically, what I'm saying is that I'm going to buy all the stuff I like and if it doesn't fit anywhere else, oh, it'll fit in the cocktail hour :)

This is just a small taste of the detail stuff that's rattling around in my brain. We still need to talk about jewelry, hair accessories, hair and make-up, alterations, stamps, envelope addressing... ummmm, there's more, I know it (this is the part I love, a normal person would be frantic right now... I'm searching... begging... craving for more stuff to think about!!)

I ordered our custom seal! Here it is:

It's the same font as in our invitations!! I cannot WAIT for it to get here!! I can't wait to start sealing stuff!!!

Is anyone else freaked out about the whole 'J isn't my last initial yet' thing? Because I heard it was not good to get a monogram or refer to yourself in any way as Mrs. So-and-so before you actually are... someone tell me I did not make a boo boo...

And was anyone else really really excited about contemplating all the little details for their big day? Or was this the scary part?

Monday, May 9, 2011


Well, we have a little over six months to go. I'm a little shocked at how fast it's gone by in hindsight. Although, we do still have six months, so, it's not there yet. I cannot tell you how excited I am... already!

Sorry, that was very sappy... I am getting giddy though, but that's just how I am about pretty much anything. I'm feeling really confident that all the details that people usually freak out about are going to be just fine for us because I think we really do get what's important. The only nervousness we're actually experiencing is whether or not our best man and maid of honor are going to be there...

But anywho, this is a post about paper! Why? because it's one of the only things I really sort of flubbed along the way. Remember when I showed the mock-up for the invitations?
Well, here's the mix-up, and it's not even that big a deal, but just full of unnecessary headaches: The paper.

From the beginning, I saw a post on Weddingbee from someone who had used Gmund papers:

They had paper that looked like wood, how cool?!

Well, I didn't need paper that looked like wood, but the cool factor and the modern feel of the website (and the fact that I hadn't looked anywhere else...) made me keep looking around their website until I found this paper they called Stroh (means straw... original):

I wanted something that looked sort of like homemade paper. I wanted something with flecks of stuff in it, and I wanted off-white or cream. Perfect. Ordered some samples, free of charge. Was very happy.

In the meantime, I had to start on my Save the Dates but couldn't commit to Gmund just yet; see, I am a firm believer that the little things totally add up. I mean, they do, so you can't convince me otherwise. Who was to say that if I bought the paper from Gmund, some emergency wasn't going to come up later on that month and make me have to dip into my savings?! You don't know!

Point is, I hesitated, and in the meantime, bought $12 paper from OfficeDepot :)

Save the dates are made on slightly different paper but I figure I'm being a little over-... [insert word here; I'm sure you can think of one] and I'm sure it's going to be fine and no one will probably even notice.

Of course it all went south from there. I decided to order my paper through Gmund for the real deal: the invitations. It was only about $50 for a ream of 165 sheets. Not bad for really high quality paper, right?

Well, they make up for it by charging just as much for shipping! Even though it has to go overseas, it became a matter of principle that I would not buy something that cost as much to ship as it cost, itself. Moreover, I was happy to spend $50 on the paper, this still made the invitations fairly inexpensive (less than ordering of course), but now we were talking about $100, just for the paper, and I still haven't bought the other supplies. I started to panic, because when you google for paper nowadays, it ain't pretty.

Well, I can't even remember to tell you where I stumbled upon my latest discovery... Really, I can't remember. I think I had just about resigned myself to paying double for the Gmund paper because it was the stuff I wanted when I randomly came across a company called Under the Sun. I held my breath and looked up their natural, printable papers and then I fell off the sofa:

Check it! It looks like linen or, more accurately, like a screen that you would make homemade paper on! And it's super thick and it has the flecks of straw or whatever else stuck in it. Most importantly, it's darker than the Gmund paper. I was never really happy with the lightness of the Gmund paper, but since it was as good as anything else I had seen thus far, I was willing to accept it as good enough... Again, who was going to call me up and say "We're not coming to your wedding because your invitation color was too white and we wanted more of a cream."

Well, if anyone was going to do that, you don't need to anymore, because I found true cream paper.

So... I ordered it, like, immediately. Before I even knew I was doing it. This was the paper I had wanted from the start but had not found until it was almost too late. It cost less than the Gmund paper even though it's thicker AND shipping this time was only about $10. Major score. So it came this weekend. It. Is. AWE. SOME!! It's perfect, it's thick, it's a rich cream color, it's got all sorts of little grasses and straw and whatever else stuck in there. Most importantly, it actually looks homemade. It really does look raw and... homemade! Sorry for the broken record-ness but I am just still stunned that I finally found my paper!

So did I paint an accurate picture of my headaches? First I found a paper, then I looked for something cheaper, used said cheap paper for Save the Dates, resigned myself to buying original, expensive paper, then found my paper soulmate! It does exist, people!!

Kyle's printer is a fantastic laser printer so at this time (emphasis on the at this time) I am not worried about bleeding ink. I think the paper is sturdy enough anyway, but I will keep you posted as far as whether or not this paper really is the best paper in the whole world. I am finally going to take charge and start calling grandmas to get addresses and then Save the Dates go out... like BEFORE the six month mark. Once they go out, I want to start on the invitations so I'm not in a time crunch a few months down the line. I know, I'm not dramatic enough. I'm trying to make my life difficult so it will be better for blogging, but I just love love LOVE planning ahead!

Anyone else have any great invitation or paper stories? Do you think I'm crazy yet??

P.S. Cake artist papers filled out but not sent, so can't really say we have our baker... but she's got our date reserved for us, so there's only this small little legal distinction separating "our baker" from "our soon-to-be-baker".