Monday, 29 December 2008

Christmas Greetings

I know that I said that I was taking a wedding and blogging break for Christmas, and I still am, it's just that I finally caught sight of the letter my parents send at Christmas to all our family friends who live abroad and it included this blog link.

So, if you came here via my Parents' letter, welcome! I think it might have been oversold slightly so I hope you do not find the obsessing over small details too boring.

Back again in January...

Monday, 22 December 2008

Back soon... Happy Christmas

Although I am working up until 5pm Christmas Eve and back into the office on the 29th, I am taking a break from wedding related activities until the new year.

I need to have a rest and spend time with M and our families. It was a telling sign when we discussed spending time together in our marriage course and M suggested he would like it if I had some evenings off from the computer. So, for him, and for me, I am switching off for the Christmas period.

I turn 27 on 5 January. I will be back after that.

Happy Christmas or happy holidays. See you in 2009.

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Hair Ideas (continued)

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Image by Ben Chrisman via A cup of Jo

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I think this is how I want my hair to look: elegant, sophisticated, slightly vintage. But will it work with blonde-ish hair and can I do it myself? Well, time will tell. When I have a run through of the make-up with my friend who is a make-up artist I might practice the hair too. Yes, I will try and take some photos... but whether I can post them is another matter.
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Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Hera

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Along time ago I studied Classics. But I had forgotten this: the Greek Goddess Hera, wife of Zeus, was the goddess of women and marriage. And her symbol/emblem? The peacock. My favourite Liberty print fabric (peacock feathers) is also called Hera. Why did I not put two and two together earlier?

I rather like this fitting imagery. I wonder if there is a way that I can incorporate this into the wedding...

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Monday, 15 December 2008

Etsy Shop

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If you felt like cheering me up, you could visit my etsy shop and favourite it...
I went to upload the photos of my new earrings and the lead to my camera was flat. We had friends over on Friday (I think one of them stood on it). New lead ordered. So, more earrings on their way.
I would also appreciate any feedback (but please, phrase things kindly, I am a little fragile at present...)
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Friday, 12 December 2008

The Marriage Course 7

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The Marriage Course 3
The Marriage Course 2
The Marriage Course 1

We attended the final marriage course session last night and I shall endeavour to post about sessions 4, 5 and 6 as soon as I can.

I am pleased that the course is over as I have found the constant analysing of our relationship a strain. Whereas at the start of the course, I smugly thought we had a great relationship, I now realise that there are a lot of aspects to work on. That doesn't mean that we have a bad relationship, far from it, just that there is room for improvement on many levels. I suspect that many of our areas which could be improved stem from my own issues. Without wishing to descend into either a prolonged and boring passage of naval gazing nor reveal too many personal details, I know that my tendency towards blueness doesn't help me or our relationship. I also made a decision to take loans to pay for law school and ultimately to qualify as a solicitor, which finally occurs in April 2009. I wouldn't change the decisions I made but I do find the repaying of those loans exceedingly onerous and one which doesn't help my sanity and stress levels. I am not saying that all our issues are mine, or that M is perfect, which of course he isn't. I just think that some of the problems start with my own issues.

That said, last night's session was on Love Languages. Again, a topic which should be fairly obvious but clearly can pass unnoticed. Essentially, there are many ways of expressing love towards your husband or wife: words, actions, time, touch, presents. All of us have a preferred way of receiving love and generally we express our love for our husband or wife using our preferred way of receiving love. Which is not necessarily the same way or husband or wife might prefer. Sounds obvious, but when you think about it a little more closely, reveals some interesting causes of issues which could so easily be solved. So for me, say, I might know I am loved when I am hugged. So I hug M a lot, whereas perhaps actions mean more to M, so he would rather I tidied up my clothes and returned my tea cups to the kitchen. Not that he doesn't appreciate my hugs, but if I choose to express my love with actions then it makes him feel more loved. Makes sense I think.

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Ps. For those of you interested in the etsy shop (which shamefully only has one pair of earrings in at the moment as I am waiting for the delivery of some more ear wires) you can click on the round orange etsy button further down this page and have a look. If anyone is an etsy user or seller, if you favourite my shop I shall come and have a look at your shop in return!

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Wednesday, 10 December 2008

The great plate search continues

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I can't believe we didn't think of it before, or, if we did, why we rejected it. Since we decided to collect our own crockery for the wedding we have been offered 6 items by a friend (thanks Rebecca!) and a set of 8 dinner plates and tea service items from a kind gentleman from Freecycle. My mother has also collected a bag of items from a charity shop in the town where she lives and I am winning 4 sets of 20 on e-bay!

I have also decided to make my own jewellery for the occasion and have been practising last night. One earring prompted M, on seeing it on the table this morning, to ask where I bought it. So I have opened an etsy shop to try and sell some of the ones which I like but won't be using. Interested? Drop me an e-mail or comment and I shall let you know the shop address.

The napkins and the umbrella arrived today. Proof that sometimes taking a gamble does pay off - they look better in real life than I thought they would. They are actually quite large and look far more expensive than the 20p each I paid for them (and that included P&P!). Any one else have any bargains to share?

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Tuesday, 9 December 2008

The great plate search and other things

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We bought a Christmas tree yesterday. As I threaded loops for 27 baubles from M's mother (to replace the ones that were stolen from our previous flat by the mean burglars of 15 December 2006) and hung them on the branches I realised that this was my last single Christmas. Next year we shall be married. Next year the annual argument over which tree to buy and how to get it home (M carried it) will be a married argument although we are both hoping marriage means we won't argue over how best to carry and then stand a tree. I suspect this is not true but I will try my best.

Our tree might be beautiful but it does have rather a curve to it. The base of the trunk is flat and standing upright in the dish of water. The top of the tree leans back by almost a foot, giving it the amusing sensation that it is just about to fall over, when in fact it is perfectly 'upright' and as steady as anything... I shall post some photos later tonight when I have mustered the strength to tie thread loops for the rest of the baubles.

In other exciting news, we have decided to try and play the non-communicative supplier at her own game: purchase the crockery ourselves. Yes, instead of paying almost £800 to rent it, we have set ourselves a challenge. My mother, M's mother and I will attempt to collect 1/3 of the crockery each from charity shops and junk shops over the next few months. Given that the brief was "pretty, Grannie's tea party style floral crockery as opposed to something you would find in a church kitchen" I am unsure as to what we will get, but hopefully it will create the effect we desire. And afterwards, should we need to serve afternoon tea for 120, we will have all the crockery and napkins and tablecloths we need...

I also finally made an umbrella decision and ordered myself a peacock feathered one. We may be marrying in June but this is England. Although traditionally the rain only pours on the Glastonbury weekend (around about the 25th June) and the Wimbledon fortnight (last 2 weeks of June, usually), English summers are nothing if not unpredictable so I think it is best we are prepared for all weathers. Hence another recent purchase was a cashmere twinset with pearl fastenings (another bargain - £195 reduced to £25 at the Couture Gallery) just in case it is not only wet but freezing too.

I was thinking of ordering umbrellas for the bridesmaids too but having chosen bright dresses I think patterned umbrellas may well have been overkill. Also, we are attempting to do as much of the wedding as possible without buying things new or, if new, on sale. So far, aside from the umbrella, we have achieved it as my shoes were 75% off in the summer sale and the bridesmaids dresses were reduced by 50% that week too. Even our stationery was bought from Smythsons on a day when everything was reduced by 20%. Obviously somethings have to be new: I propose buying new underwear, for example, flowers really have to be 'new', and the stamp I commissioned for the invitations was also new, but in general, our ethical ethos is being applied across the whole wedding.

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Sunday, 7 December 2008

T Minus 6 Months

To be completely honest with you, I suffered a crisis of confidence this weekend. I have verged from being extremely happy to doubting everything right down to the jumper I wore for a night out. As you might have noticed from the few photos I have posted, I am pretty slim and have never had 'body' issues. I have however been suffering from image issues, feeling old and frumpy in whatever I wear, hating my hair and buying black framed glasses to hide behind.

I went to a dinner last night, with friends and friends of friends. The friends asked how the wedding planning was going and I didn't know how to answer. I didn't want to sound like a boring bridezilla and waffle on and on about napkins and so on, so I responded that we had planned the outline but were in the process of filling in the details. Which sounded even more boring to my ears than it must have been to hers. She changed the subject and I felt even more boring than I did before.

We spent some time going through the budgets for the wedding. My parents are putting in some money and M's parents have given us some money and M and I are putting in the rest. After having problems finding a suitable venue cheaply which would let us do our own wine and catering and allow us exclusive use of the premises for the weekend, we have ended up spending a third of our budget on the venue. This means every other decision is having to be made so carefully and it is starting to get exhausting. Perhaps this is just six-month-to-the-day worries.

I hope next week is better. And even if it isn't, I will try and stop moaning on!

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

A little update

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Image by Robyn Kessler via Style me Pretty
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Do not worry, my cold hasn't got me yet. I might be existing solely on lemsips and mouth-ulcer gel but I haven't forgotten the wedding. It has in fact been a rather busy week: M's brother turned 30 (with two parties, one to co-host), I had a meeting with the fab H who is my wonderful gorgeous hen party elf with envy-inducing-long-eyelashes (more on that later), sister-in-law-to-be survived the "we are going to make one of you redundant and give the other a promotion to do both of your jobs" fiasco, we met my sister's AmericanBoy and took him on a late night rainy walking tour of London, an Italian friend came to stay with 2 days notice and we went to our marriage course. Oh yes, and I went to work.

Have been doing a little research into table linens. After much consideration we have decided to purchase the napkins and tablecloths rather than hire them so we can embellish and decorate the napkins ahead of time. The ribbon is chosen, the theme for the labels decided and now, tonight, I purchased 130 white napkins. Off e-bay. For 20p each. I do so hope they are not a disappointment.

I know the photo above doesn't bear any relation to the post but I do love the idea of the groom in skinny trousers and pointy boots. So hot. But does it work in June in England? That, I am not sure.

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