Friday, January 26, 2007


I was in A.C. Moore last night for almost 2 hours and came home with the firm decision we're going to make our own invitations. Or, rather, I will make the invitations. It's nutters to spend hundreds of dollars on something you can do yourself (and cuter/better) for a fraction of the cost.

I think a few things for this wedding will be made by yours truly. I have 7 months... That's enough time to put my crafty self to work! Personal touches are always better than something you buy from a catalog.


Amy said she wanted to see some dress ideas on this blog. Sorry, girl! Haven't even started to look online yet. Right now I'm at the "pulling pages out of Brides magazine" stage.

Liz had a good idea -- I'm going to get an accordian file folder so I can organize the pages.

Maggie and I are going tomorrow to Borders to spend the gift card Brett gave me for Christmas (Thanks, B!) on a wedding planning book. By the time Paul and I come back from our romantic ski getaway, I'll be all set to dive in. As if I've been sitting around on my bum all week.

In the week we've been engaged, we've gotten a lot decided, I think. Now to just get out there and look for dresses, venues, florists, caterers, etc... TG I love details!

We've got an audience!

It was nice to see a little surge of traffic to the wedding blog yesterday, much of it coming from familiar domains (yes, we really watch this stuff!). Bloggers are fascinated by who's reading what they write, and I'm pleased to see so many friends have already signed on. Don't forget about RSS!

I noted wryly to Dana that traffic to the wedding blog yesterday was higher than traffic to my professional blog, which has been around for 18 months and which is #21,000 on Technorati. People are always more interested in personal stories than professional ramblings, I said. Start talking about sex and watch the traffic explode!

If you're checking in from TechTarget, I want to just say how great it was to see everybody at the editorial meeting the other day. It's frustrating sometimes, because I want to spend a half hour talking to each of you but we get, like, 30 seconds at best. The only thing I miss about company life is the people, so it is a treat whenever I get to see you.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Resized and never coming off

On Monday afternoon, Paul and I walked to the jewelry store and dropped off my ring to get resized. Yesterday afternoon, I went to pick it up before going to pick up Leigha, who was in town for a few days for a company meeting. Leigha and Paul and I all had dinner after a quick house tour. Anyway, I walked out of the jewelry store $10 poorer, but with my diamond ring that fits like a glove. They got the gold, of course -- however much gold comes from resizing a size 7 ring to a size 4 3/4.

So now it's on and staying on. When I wash my hair, I'm particularly grateful it's not a big-rock solitaire. :-) My hair is very long and gets awfully tangly when it's being washed.


A few nights ago, Paul and I were finishing dinner and talking about wedding ideas. I asked him if he'd agree to write our own vows (the traditional ones never did much for me) and he said he'd like that. With two writers getting married, one wonders what they'll end up being... God knows mine will be easy. When I think of Paul, poetry comes easy for me. I regularly write him love poems.

If I know my love, he'll make me cry pretty dramatically when he recites his. We've agreed to keep them secret until the big day.

Let me know of any really good waterproof eye makeup!

Let's go, girls!

So my side of the wedding party is already decided and (thankfully) all have accepted.

Matron of Honor: Maggie McClennan.

Maggie and I started our relationship purely professionally -- she was my boss (although she'll never admit it) at 101communications. I worked with her for only 10 months and have been best friends with her ever since. She's my rock and my shoulder to cry on, as well as being my most trusted confidant. I'm honored that she's agreed to be my right-hand lady and help me with my wedding. Maggie, our family is getting a bit bigger...

Bridesmaids: Leigha Cardwell and Liz McCurley.

Leigha, who lives in Tulsa, OK, and I had something special the first time we chatted. We worked together at TechTarget but found that we must have been sisters in a previous life because we understand each other more clearly and faster than any friend I've ever had. She's a dear, sweet soul who doesn't let the world make her frown, even though she's had a pretty hard path to walk. Leigha's my girl, plain and simple. She's been a large part of my relationship with Paul, confidants to us both, and I couldn't have this wedding in good conscience without her being a part of it.

Liz, who lives in Mohnton, PA, is one of the best parts of my family. I thank God that my brother Scott married her. She's down-to-earth and always has good advice for me when I need it (and sometimes when I don't!). Liz and I are more sisters than sisters-in-law, I've always thought, which is a good thing because I've always wanted a sister. In a lot of ways, we're similar people and in a lot of interesting ways, we're not (for one, she's way cooler than I am!). Whenever we see each other, there's almost never enough time to just sit and talk. Anyone who knows me knows how important my family is to me, and I'm honored that Liz has agreed to stand next to me on my wedding day, as she has since I entered my teenage years. I'm eternally grateful that Liz agreed to be my bridesmaid, as I was hers.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Blogs and podcasts and weddings, oh my!, or Podcast #1

Not only are we blogging, we're podcasting about this wedding, too! We're so Web 2.0!

Paul and I talk about date, colors, location, engagement announcements, dress ideas, and outside venue possibilities.

Listen to our first wedding podcast!

Let us know if you have any ideas about what role the bunnies can play in our wedding! Did you have your animals in your wedding? Stories appreciated!

Engagement announcement in my hometown newspaper

I grew up near Philly -- in a town so small it didn't have a zip code, which is weird, bc it's 20 minutes from the city. It's called Maple Glen (still doesn't have its own zip code, even though it's expanded approximately 10,000% in population since my mom and dad bought the house over 35 years ago). Anyway, the zip code it "borrows" is from Ambler, the nearest "real" town. The Ambler Gazette was the paper I grew up with and so we'll put an announcement in there.

I was thinking we could recycle a picture that my mom took of us at a really nice restaurant in Boston (it's rare that Paul and I both look good in pictures; we both have a tendency to look like goofballs and not at all ourselves). I'm not sure that pic will look good in a newspaper, but I can try. I've asked my mom to look up the guidelines for the paper... more when I know more.

Tell us how many newspapers you put your announcment in.

Timing is a delicate thing

So I was watching an episode of Frasier last night where Martin decided that he wanted to get married and realized that Sheri, his girlfriend, didn't. He had bought a ring a month before and realized each night that if he asked her, she'd say no.

Which made me realize that I said that Paul got the ring in August and just asked me 4 days ago... You may be asking "What gives?" Answer: He has 2 teenage kids; and timing with them is delicate. Nuff said.

Soft honeymoon plans

Paul suggested a very interesting honeymoon idea the other night. We both love the Caribbean and I've always wanted to go to Paris for my honeymoon (since I was about 2, I think; it may be the only traditional element of this wedding!). So P said, "Why not do both?" I said, "HUH?!"

We have these vacation clubs, see... And we were thinking (pre-proposal) that we'd take off on Labor Day weekend for a 4-day Disney cruise then head from Cape Canaveral right to Paris for the rest of the 2 weeks. Paul's never in his life had a 2-week vacation and I grew up on them and tout their delights loudly, so he's looking forward to it. We can use our Disney Vacation Club points for the cruise and our Sol Melia Vacation Club points for Paris.

Anyway, I'm in charge of the wedding and he's in charge of the honeymoon. I think that's a fair deal!

Tell us about your honeymoon destination(s)!


So the current 802-page version of Brides magazine had a great idea... How about using your iPod for the reception music? It saves a few hundred dollars and you get exactly the songs you want played.

So that's what we're thinking of doing. Very 2007 of us, I believe. ;-) We just need a set of good speakers, which we can rent for a lot less than the cost of a band or a DJ. And we can set up a few different playlists -- one for cocktails, one for dinner, one for dancing, etc.

We'll have the playlists loaded onto both my Zen and Paul's iPod, because you just know one of them will break just as we hit the play button.

As for the ceremony, we're thinking, as we have been for a while, of having a bagpiper or two. We both come from Irish and Scotch-Irish decent, so it's appropriate. Plus, the wedding will be outdoors, so the sound of an instrument needs to carry. Nothing says "outdoor acoustics" better than a good bagpiper!

Note to PnD: Need MP3 player attendant to change playlists.

Tell us your stories about your great/horrible band or DJ or other creative music ideas!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The Ring

They say it's not the ring that matters, but what the ring means. I'm all for that philosophy, but what if you get the perfect ring? Can it be about both...?

The ring, as it turns out, was purchased last August in Nassau. Paul and I heard that the jewelry stores there have good deals and so our first night on the Disney cruise, he turns to me and says, "Do you want a real sapphire for your ring?" He was referring to my class ring from Penn State and he knew the answer was yes.

So we trolled the myriad jewelry stores up and down the main drag in Nassau that afternoon as the ship was docked. We found a sapphire that fit the ring and at the same store, I saw this diamond ring and instantly fell in love. Here's a pic:

So we're already making a major purchase and I didn't actually expect or even want him to buy it right then... We go to Atlantis and tour the joint (a very cool-looking resort, BTW) and swim in the ocean (illegally, we think, as only resort guests are allowed to use their beach, but WTF, we think, let's try it. Worst that happens is we get thrown out).

A thunderstorm rolls in and so we have to get out of the ocean, so we head back into town and Paul says he forgot toothpaste and needed another battery for his camera. ("But I brought plenty, Love..." "No, I like a certain kind." "Since when?" That's about when I realized he was up to something clandestine and I let him go.) I wanted to go shopping for Maggie and her boy Joe (just turned 2 a month ago), as they were bunnysitting while we were gone. We had just moved into our new house, so it was kind of an adventure for them, I'm sure, navigating around unpacked boxes and the mess that comes with combining two households into one.

So the 45-minute break was just fine by me. We met up where we parted and I saw Paul coming from the direction of the jewelry store, not the toothpaste and electronics store. Hmmmm, I wonder...

So that's the ring I fell in love with and that's the ring he bought in Nassau and that's the ring that hadn't left my finger for more than 30 seconds to show people until yesterday afternoon, when we dropped it off to get resized. I've waited 29 years to have a diamond ring, but now that I have one, I can't wait to have it back. Apparently one more day will kill me. ;-)

If the picture doesn't show it, it's a band the same width all the way around with 9 little diamonds in a channel. I never wanted a big rock and for the past few years, I've felt like a solitaire wouldn't fit me very well. The sapphire in my class ring, which I wear every day, is the biggest rock I think I'd ever want to own, or, at least, wear on my finger. As it is, it gets in the way sometimes when I want to, say, put my hand in my jeans pocket. But I put up with it because I love the ring and it means so much to me.

I'm more subtle in my jewelry tastes on an everyday basis than a big solitaire, or even a medium-sized solitaire. Paul says I have to explain to everyone who sees the ring that it's the one I fell in love with -- I called it "perfect" the first time I saw it -- so he doesn't look like a cheapskate for buying such a modest ring. I still say it's perfect... :-)

Tell us the story behind your engagement ring!

The Proposal

Last Friday (Saturday?) at about midnight, I was face-down on the massage table in our master suite. Paul was massaging me with our new lavender vanilla massage oil (thanks, Jannine and Dad!) because I had a headache and massages tend to help them. We got the massage table a few weeks ago as a mutual anniversary present. We took a massage class a few months ago, so we know a bit about it.

Paul's had some practice lately, too... He likes giving me massages. Go fig. ;-)

So I'm face down and I ask Paul to just focus on my back and shoulders and neck. I'm trying my damndest to get rid of this headache... So he rubs my back and does some fancy shoulder work and then works on my right arm and my right hand (he gives the BEST hand massages!), goes back to my shoulders, plays with my neck, then goes down the left arm and works on the left hand. And as he's pulling on my fingers, like ya do, he slips on a ring.

I am silent. Breath completely taken away. We've been talking about this, but the latest timetable had been this coming spring. So January is a bit unexpected. I pull my hand to rest it on the arm rest so I can see it. I'm hoping it's "the" ring (story to come in my next post). And, of course, it is. My face is still in the headrest thingie. Paul kneels beside me and says in his sexiest voice, quiet and husky, "Will you marry me?" My reply, which I've had prepared for some time now: "It would be the greatest honor of my life to marry you." Followed up by the perfect, most romantic kiss.

Perfect sums it up pretty well, the whole experience.

A bit later, we get into bed and he asks me when I think I may want to get married. Of course, I'm still in a bit of shock, but I say I've always kind of wanted a spring or summer wedding. So maybe next year? He says, "Not sooner?" I say, "What did you have in mind?" He says, "How about this fall?" So we compromised and decided on this September. If you do the math, which I know you've already done, that gives us a bit over 7 months to plan the wedding. Play ball!

Tell us your proposal story!