Bride Wars

Many of you may remember me mentioning that a very good friend, a best friend, got engaged two weeks after I did. We were both going to be experiencing this exciting time in our lives, at the same time. Let me go back… we’ve been best friends since we were 15. We spent summers together, we celebrated birthdays and graduations together, we visited each other in college, we shared everything for the past 11.5 years. And here we are, growing up and getting married and we won’t be sharing that.

A few weeks ago, I changed up my wedding party. This was not a rash decision, but a well thought out one (and that’s becoming more clear as the days go on). It was weighing heavy on my heart for a while before the decision was made – but with two weddings being planned, it felt like only one of them was being focused on. I should have prefaced this post with “THIS IS HOW IT FELT TO ME,” because of course, every story has 2 sides. I understand that living within 5 miles of each other makes it much easier to get together and talk weddings but part of me, the little girl in me, the bride-to-be in me, wanted to stand up and scream, “I’M GETTING MARRIED, TOO!” But I didn’t do that… I didn’t do that when our other 2  “best” friends were asked to be Maid and Matron of Honor in the other wedding, or when she browsed for wedding dresses on the day that MY bridesmaids were looking at dresses to wear in my wedding, or when she announced she was using the same colors as me, or even when a slightly edited version of an email I sent to my bridesmaids was sent from her to her bridesmaids just 2 hours after mine. Nope, I kept quiet. I did mention it once, and was told, “It’s the time in our lives where everyone is getting married, we just have to deal with that.”

I don’t want to deal with that. I want to (and deserve to) to be the center of attention, the star in the spotlight, and at the least, the focus of MY bridal party. But I wasn’t (with the exception of two fabulous friends!)… and I was starting to feel like not even a friend after taking the highroad and offering to host a bridal party for the other bride and being told “We’ll be hitting up all the bridesmaids to help.” And just like that, I was lumped into a group of people that were not life-long friends, but just bridesmaids. I did not list out everything that had hurt my feelings over the past months and I was not mean in my request. I was honest and open, and hoping that my best friends would understand. I actually hoped (that maybe just ONE of them) would have apologized and asked how they could fix the situation, but no… they all immediately opted out.

I am not bitter and I still 100% believe I made the right decision in asking them to step down. They have all made it clear that they do not wish to be a part of my wedding planning, my wedding day, or even my life. Some of their family members have made similar decisions, which hurts, and sucks all at the same time. I do not regret my decision. I have taken the highroad. My attempts to contact them have gone unanswered. I’ve been unfriended on Facebook by some. Yet, I still have plenty of people in my life who are caring, understanding and WANT to be involved in my planning, my happiness and my big day. And yes, it’s MY day – so this is the one time in my life where I can be selfish and soak up all of that attention. I just had to surround myself with people that could enjoy it with me – and I can’t express how thankful I am for each and every one of them.

“I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.” -Martin Luther King Jr.

Save-The-Date

We ordered our save-the-dates! Whew, that’s a relief! We must have looked at 500,000 before deciding on THE ONE. Wedding Paper Divas, Etsy for custom designs, Minted, Salutations in Ballantyne…. so.many.save.the.dates.  And then we had to decide on the pictures – and boy do I LOVE pictures. I mean, I have like 15,000 pictures on Facebook, and 175 albums, I LOVE pictures. And we have so many good ones between both of our engagement shoots. I prefer funny photos, whereas my love prefers serious ones that show off our love for each other. I can deal with that. So just before I left for Atlanta, we created our own Save-the-Date – which is a nice touch for two people who are creative – and we agreed on pictures (even if we did have to Facetime with the Best woMan for her opinion). They should be here in no time and we can take over the fridges in America… or approximately 90 fridges anyway. Definitely happy to check this task off our list of “to-do’s” for the wedding.

eng4

Ps… 7 months or 31 weeks and 2 days! That’s CRAZY! But who’s counting?

White Dress Diet

In the wake of the eating-frenzy that happened over Christmas, I am feeling the need to work out super hardcore (and maybe avoid biscuits & gravy, mac & cheese , and any other delicious “Christmas” foods that were had). The “diet” part of the title is slightly misleading because I physically cannot diet. I LOVE FOOD.

My mom got me FlyBarre classes for Christmas, and I already had a 3-class pass for FlyWheel. So I am super excited for trying those – I’ve only heard good things about these classes. And no mom, I won’t be “flying” through the air to do them.

I also considered P90x or Insanity – but home workouts are never as good as going somewhere (in my opinion) – partially because I have 180 lbs of dog that like to kiss my face during sit ups, think I’m playing during push-ups, etc. Crossfit is another option but I’m slightly scared. I HATE being sore. Which is probably why I’m not in as good of shape as I could be… I tend to do things lighter than I technically could for fear of being sore if I actually do it to the max.

I still have a Groupon for 20 hot yoga classes and I’ve already signed up for the Tarheel 10-mile race (April) and a 1/2 Marathon (Alston Bird – March). Running is definitely my “go-to” work out – and I enjoy yoga. But I need to do more this year so I’m not one of those brides who looks back and hates the way her arms look in her wedding pictures.

I came across these workout DVDs but haven’t made any purchases yet:

Bridalicious® Boot Camp by The Knot

But again, the home workout deal… it’s so easy to get side tracked. What’s your favorite workout? Or better yet, if there are any brides out there… tell me how you got in shape for your big day!

PS – a BIG congrats to my grad school friend, Valerie, on her engagement! I am so excited for you and David – you are going to be one BEAUTIFUL bride! xox

Gee, I really love you…

I didn’t do a Thanksgiving post because I was passed out after eating a plate full of southern deliciousness (turkey, sweet potato pie, mashed potatoes, green been casserole, stuffing… and of course, pumpkin and chocolate chess pie).

But, while we were celebrating Thanksgiving with my fiance’s sweet, sweet family (that I am SO lucky to be able to call MY family now), we had a little engagement shoot at Fearrington Village.



Fearrington Barn



And our shoot wouldn’t have been complete without a few “fun” photos…

YAY! We’re getting married!

 

“Make sure you marry someone who laughs at the same things you do.” – J.D. Sallinger

Hope y’all had a nice Thanksgiving. I’m very thankful for both of my families, my supportive and oh-so-sweet fiance, my best friends – who are also my bridesmaids, my sweet pups that can brighten any day, and being so blessed in life. I’m one lucky gal!

 

Engagement Photos!

Immediately (seriously, THE NEXT DAY) following the engagement, I began emailing photographers for prices on an engagement session. Many of them told me they included engagement sessions with their wedding package – which is awesome – but I kind of wanted to try them out first… you know? Before I splurged on wedding photos, I’d like to see what you can do for us. Portfolios online were great but it was really important for me to see what OUR pictures were going to look like.

Gabrielle Lover Photography

I found several photographers who offered to do 30-minute mini-sessions with us for a reasonable price and I settled on Gabrielle Lover. I liked the photos she had featured online and I figured $60 was a good deal for a few good shots of me and my husband-to-be. We met at “The Green” in uptown Charlotte for our mini-session – and she even let us include our fur babies in the pictures!

Gabrielle Lover Photography
Gabrielle Lover Photography

Although it was a short session, we did get several photos out of it that we really loved. And since it was such a small investment, we are able to consider doing more in the spring or when we book our photographer for our wedding. We had a blast taking the pictures – although the pups didn’t cooperate quite like I wanted them to (BIG thanks to our friends Seth & Scott for holding them while we finished our session) we still got one (semi) good shot of us with them.

Gabrielle Lover Photography

I highly recommend reaching out to several photographers to see their prices, availability and of course, their style before making a decision. The mini-session was a great way to go because you could easily have several mini-sessions for the same price of a normal engagement session and get lots of pictures while trying out lots of photographers as well. $60 in my book was a great price for the shots that we got… now we are on the hunt for our wedding photographer! We’re getting married, y’all!

Gabrielle Lover Photography

THE story!

My darling groom-to-be had been out of town all weekend but had left sweet love notes all over the house for me to find. There was a note by the door telling me to have a good weekend, a note inside my laptop telling me he loved me, a note on the fridge telling me to check inside…. and then a note on top of my very favorite ice cream (Graeter’s Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip Ice Cream from Earth Fare), a note on my pillow telling me goodnight, a note inside my shoe wishing me “good luck” on my 5-mile race, well, you get the picture… he covered all of his bases with the notes.

Sunday he came home and we had an early dinner as we both had homework to catch up on (not only do we both work full-time, we’re both in grad school!). I decided to take our sweet puppies for a run before I settled in to do some homework. While working diligently on whatever project it was that night, Landon came downstairs to convince my dog to come back upstairs with him.

Anyone who has met my dog, knows he doesn’t like to be away from his “mommy.” So the convincing took a little work but eventually he decided that he should follow Landon back upstairs only to come bounding back down the stairs seconds later with a blue note tied around his neck that said “Mommy” on the front. And then I heard “our song” come on the surround sound…. that’s when I knew.

Some sweet words were spoken, and a sparkly beauty was placed on my left hand and I became an engaged woman! YAY! Let the planning begin!