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APW Happy Hour


Short and sweet edition

by Meg Keene, Editor-In-Chief

APW Happy Hour | A Practical WeddingAPW Happy Hour | A Practical Wedding

HEY, APW!

It was a good week, after the last sort of terrible one. I got back to writing, we had a photoshoot. But I think mostly what I want to say today is, read these links. There is some really good stuff there. Sometimes? It’s that simple.

Get reading, and if you want to talk, hop on your open thread.

XO
MEG

Highlights of APW This Week

When your mom has Pinterest boards for YOUR wedding.

Even better the second time you read it (or the third, fourth, or fifth time): Lisa’s San Francisco City Hall wedding.

Intern Zen returns to get down to brass tacks about traditional parents.

Rachel and Eric’s civil wedding ceremony! It’s so good, y’all.

The first step in wanting to be a parent: resolving that your ducks aren’t going to line up, ever.

We talked about what holds you back from getting the things you want.

Tiny Steps to Adulthood! Part one: deal with your money! We expect your homework to be turned in promptly.

Link Roundup

Have we told you lately that we love you that we still have swag? Feminist totebags, treat yo’ self!

Related: We prefer “embrace bossy” to “ban bossy,” but still. (Beyonce: “I’m not bossy, I’m the boss.” Bless.)

I Went To The Oscars With My Friend, And Nobody Cared. (Favorite fun read of the week.)

“But you shouldn’t feel bad for not knowing or for thinking such silly things. You’re just a monkey, kid, so cut yourself some slack.” (Favorite serious read of the week.)

Twenty seven portraits challenging what it means to be LGBT.

H&M is making “the first” $99 wedding dress. It’s funny that they think it’s the first, but it’s nice movement for the industry.

Lena Dunham’s Adam and Eve skit.

CRY WARNING: Reaching out to my autistic son through Disney.

Study: free birth control does not increase risky sex.

A handy guide to body shapes.

Research (finally) says cohabitation before marriage does not lead to divorce.

Watching strangers make out, uncomfortable or hot? Maddie doesn’t even care that these are all actors, and is content to live in her little romantic bubble.

Celebrity photobombs: the only photobombs you hope for.

To do over the weekend: pick out my fictional feminist boyfriend. You know, to go with my real-life feminist husband.

Photo of Monogamy Wine by Eyes and Hart for APW

APW’s 2014 Happy Hours are sponsored by Monogamy Wine. Thank you Monogamy for helping make the APW mission possible! if you want to learn more about monogamy (and possibly win birthday treats), head over here and sign up for their newsletter.

Meg Keene

Meg is the Founder and EIC of APW. Her first book, A Practical Wedding: Creative Solutions for Planning a Beautiful, Affordable, and Meaningful Celebration, was published in January 2012, and has been a top three bestseller on the wedding bookshelf ever since. Meg has her BFA in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in Oakland, CA with her husband and son. For more than you ever wanted to know about Meg, you can visit MegKeene.com.

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  • Sara

    I just read that Disney article, and am currently in a puddle of tears at my desk. Heartbreaking and heartwarming all at the same time.

    Other than that, I got a new job this week and I’m pretty pumped :) And tomorrow is a good friend’s wedding I bought an awesome dress for.

    Have a good week everyone!

    • http://werewritingabook.com/ Breck

      Also, his older brother’s name is WALT #serendipity

      • Sara

        I KNOW! That’s where the tears started.

    • Crayfish Kate

      Congrats on the job! :-D

      • Sara

        Thanks :)

    • Katy

      I read the article at my desk as well (I work with Ron, and we’re doing an event for the book next month – it was event research!) and then had to wipe away the tears when my boss came in! I haven’t stopped thinking about it since.

  • Karlee

    Two (or three?!) weeks ago, I posted in Happy Hour about how I discovered that my boyfriend was planning to propose on our upcoming trip. I was really worried that I had ruined the surprise and wasn’t sure how to feel (excited? sad?).

    Well…it happened! I am finally engaged and don’t feel creepy for reading APW on a daily basis anymore! I took all of your advice and just went with the flow and enjoyed every second. Luckily, he proposed the first night we were there, so there wasn’t much of me wondering “is THIS it?!” It was THE BEST day! We spent all day driving down the California coast exploring and hiking, and around 5:30 pm we stopped at a secluded beach to relax and watch the sunset. I kind of hoped he proposed then, because it was such a fun day, and watching the sunset over the Pacific Ocean was romantic.

    For anyone interested, I posted a link to a video of the proposal below. The camera was hiding under a blanket, so I had NO idea the proposal was recorded! I’m so happy it was, though. (Yes, that is a ring pop on my finger!)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OE3Q7K55WFY

    • Cleo

      OMG! that video is so perfectly backlit! Beautiful! Congratulations!!

    • http://werewritingabook.com/ Breck

      Awwwwwwwwww. Congrats!

    • Julia27

      This gives me all of the warm fuzzies. Congrats!

    • StevenPortland

      It was a great video — really loved that it was a silhouette of you 2 the entire time!!

    • Jenni

      Congratulations! It sounds like it was everything you dreamed of!

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      Yay! congratulations! and you should not feel bad for reading APW before, during or after nuptials.

    • Meg Keene

      Awwwwwww. You look plenty surprised.

    • dg

      dammit, tears and i’m only 2 posts in!

    • Emily

      That is awesome, congrats!! What a sweet video!

    • Lindsay Rae

      Yes!! Hooray!! Congratulations!! What a beautiful video :) I remember commenting on your post and am so happy that it was still everything you hoped it would be!

    • lolauren

      That video was just lovely and of course it made me tear up :) I also really love that music. Congratulations!

    • JDrives

      YAY!! I’ve been perusing the comments, hoping you would follow up with us :) Congratulations!!

    • MC

      AWWWW congrats!!! That video is so beautiful and amazing!

    • Laura

      Been waiting to hear about this, so happy for you!

    • Lisa

      How absolutely beautiful! Congratulations!!

  • Not Sarah

    I loved that article showing that cohabitation before marriage does not lead to divorce! That’s been bugging me for ages, especially since I’m not sure I want to get married, but I don’t want to live by myself for the rest of my life!

    I also really enjoyed reading through everyone’s perspectives on joint finances this week. I’m pretty good at managing my own money, but the idea of sharing money with someone else is pretty scary. I think it would be interesting to hear more about how systems have evolved from living together -> engaged -> married -> kids, rather than just what the final systems look like!

    • http://batman-news.com mere…

      I really appreciated the financial talk as well! None of my family and a lot of my friends don’t talk about money and I found it really reassuring (and challenging, in a good way) to hear how some other couples manage sharing their funds.

    • Sara

      Ironically, my cousin’s first marraige’s downfall was directly correlated to her not living with her before marriage (long storry, but in summary, they realized they just couldn’t live together). Which lead to her living with her next boyfriend three months after they met! And now, 6 years later are happily married with the craziest little boy.
      So based on her, I always thought it was a great idea to living with someone first!

      • Not Sarah

        That’s pretty funny! I’m guessing they hadn’t spent many repeated nights together / done chores together and such. My boyfriend and I don’t officially live together, but we see each other 5-7 nights a week and split chores, plus the costs for groceries/household goods/toiletries and have our checking accounts linked to share costs easier without having a joint account/credit card. So I’m pretty sure we will love living together when we do (probably later this year) :)

    • Ally

      I second the idea of seeing how people evolve their financial/budget strategies.

      Dating/cohabitating for several years we were totally separate – just before the wedding we set up a joint account (because, checks with two names on them?) – just after the wedding we’re really just using the joint account to pay our rent – but after the article/discussion (and that Slate article: http://www.slate.com/articles/life/home_economics/2011/01/our_newlywed_money_dilemma.html) we’ve worked out a new system to pool a portion for shared expenses. We’ll be starting that out later this month and I can’t wait to see how we both have better visibility into the big picture. I imagine that once we get closer to kids/mortgage we’ll move to the “Common Pot” method and be almost completely joint across the board, but right now it’s baby steps/transition period.

      • Not Sarah

        I understand not joining bank accounts during dating/cohabitating, but then how did you share expenses during that time period? Did one person pay for X and the other for Y and then reconcile or how did you do that?

        • joanna b.n.

          Exactly that. You kept track of what the shared expenses were and made sure everyone settled at the end of the month.

        • Ally

          While we dated and lived together we split things as evenly as possible and where it was too hard or too much of a pain we figured that it would all just even out.

          We kept our personal bills, split utilities (ex: I pay cable and you pay elec./gas, and if there’s a big discrepancy, like heating costs during Boston winters, we’d add the difference to rent, which we split evenly). For things like dining out or stocking up at Target or gas or dog food we’d be more lax and just tend to switch off each time. It worked fine but was sometimes a pain.

          I think the biggest reason we need to merge is so we each have better visibility into the whole. Right now we’re both trying to pay debts down and save at the same time but don’t really pay attention to what the other person is doing. So we’re kind of a mess, but we’ll get there!

        • Cathi

          My husband and I don’t physically share accounts (though we share information freely with each other), though we also didn’t cohabitate until after marriage.

          Mostly I just pay for some stuff and he pays for some stuff and we don’t worry about it. No reconciliation. We sort of act like our money is all in one big pot and every dollar belongs to both of us, it’s just strewn about in different accounts.

      • lolauren

        Bummer, the Slate article link isn’t working. I checked above and its also not listed in the links for the week. Would you mind reposting?

    • Pileofstix

      We literally just opened a joint account last Saturday after a lot of discussion and reading (and re-reading) that Slate article. I also canvassed friends on Facebook and in person. What I learned is that even if the fundamental outcomes for most people are the same (joint for bills and savings, individual for fun money), the process of getting there is always totally unique. I had friends who were high school sweethearts who were totally combined from the get-go because they basically had no money until a few years ago. I had friends who didn’t combine at all until after they married or after they had a baby or some other major life event that made joint the most common sense choice. For us? We’ve been together about 4.5 years. We’ve lived together for about 3 of that. We’ve been talking marriage for awhile and I have always been very up-front about my financial situation (I’ve got an incredible amount of debt that I can’t discharge).
      We had talked about combining once we were actually married, but then…we got a cat. And I think for my boyfriend, that was the moment where forever really solidified, because owning a pet is such a comittment. So he initiated it. For my part, I was TERRIFIED. He makes a lot more than I do and has a very modest amount of debt. Because of this, I’ve always been careful to make sure he knows that I’m not trying to be a mooch or anything. Gradually, though, he explained that this really is OUR money and this is the best way to represent that. Now, we’re setting goals for the nest egg we’d like to have built up by the end of the year and plotting the best way to get out from under (mine/his) OUR debt. As in anything, communication is key! :-)

    • NicoleT

      Seriously! Really happy that the cohabitation thing has been put to rest (for now). That being said, I’m always sort of against those kinds of articles, but that’s mostly because whenever I read them, I usually get the messages “science says I’m screwing this up and we’re going to get divorced and the world is going to end”. In this article, it said something about how getting married young was a better indicator of divorce. My mind immediately jumped from “what’s considered young” to “we’re getting married to young and going to divorce because science…etc.”. I guess I’m just too emotionally invested in everything to read any of those articles with an open, logical mind.

      • Aurora Parlin

        I do this with articles about mental health. I had to stop reading the one about Adam Lanza’s dad because it made me freak out and think OH GOD I AM UNSTABLE. And then I realized, wait a minute, I would never do what he did so I’m fine. Breathe!

        • MC

          Oh man that article was intense. I read it at work earlier in the week and was shaken up the rest of the day. Such tough stuff to think about.

      • Not Sarah

        My problem with the articles is that there usually isn’t enough science in them for me. Like I found some talking about how wealthier couples are more likely to be married, but I kept trying to figure out WHY and it drove me nuts.

        • NicoleT

          Yup! That too. Most of these click bait articles probably have next to no science behind them. I know that even when there is some science, article writers will take it, twist it to be almost unrecognizable, and jump to unrealistic conclusions.

  • Cleo

    YES to “Embrace bossy!” I am not on board with “ban bossy.” Because, you know what? Some people are bossy. And that’s okay. I spent a considerable portion of my formative years being called “weird.” I was a weird kid. I embraced it and, when I did, people subsequently embraced me.

    This ban bossy thing makes me afraid that girls will be even more reticent to be called bossy. Also, it feels like focusing our energy on a word is just plain silly.

    Let’s embrace bossy, but what’s more, embrace girls in leadership roles. Tell girls that they can lead and they should. I turned down a nomination for class president in 4th grade because I thought I wasn’t bossy enough and a boy should do it (20 years later and I’m still kicking myself for that).

    • Jenni

      I think the benefit of “ban bossy” is that it draws attention to how we differentiate between assertive girls and boys, in a way that “embrace bossy” would not. Both phrases mean, “don’t use bossy as a negative word against girls and women” though.

      • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

        I do like that this leads to discussion. Anytime we call attention to something wrong, we have the potential to make it better. At least, I’d like to be optimistic about it.

      • Jess

        Ban Bossy is a catchy phrase. I kind of get why they went for the alliteration. Plus the term “bossy” is thrown out a lot in “all about feminism” books, I’m noticing. So instant connection to that history.

        Embrace Assertiveness doesn’t quite have the same ring to it… even if it’s more accurate.

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      Right. I think this “ban bossy” thing is just oversimplifying the larger problem of not encouraging women and girls to embrace leadership roles and responsibilities. Kids will call each other names, that’s just a fact. But If we teach girls to react with more strength and empower themselves, perhaps we won’t need to ban bossy at all. And I agree with the theory that as soon as you ban something, it comes back full force.

    • Grace

      High Five for embracing weird! I did too. And bossy, ha. It’s working out pretty great for me so far.

    • Kayjayoh

      I call all bossy little kids bossy, but I don’t use it much for anyone out of school-age kids.

      • lady brett

        that’s mostly all i can think of in this whole debate – my 3-year-old (boy) is bossy as hell, and it is simply rude and inappropriate, and we are working hard to learn alternatives. i just, um, don’t feel like bossy and leadership have much in common…but maybe i spend too much time with toddlers?

    • Caroline

      I definitely get the idea, but ban bossy sounds like banning the idea not the word. It feels more like shutting girls (and me!) down instead of shutting down criticism of them. At first, I was excited (I’m still a bossy girl!) but then it sort of started to feel like the wrong approach. Ban bossy sounds a lot more like when people (mostly my family) tell me to quiet down, don’t talk so loud, shrink yourself (literally and in the space I take up in the world). (While encouraging me to be a leader in the workplace. What is that contradictory crap?!)

      And you know what? I’m loud, bossy, and unapologetic and I’m not going to shrink back or quiet down. I’d rather embrace bossy as a compliment.

  • Crayfish Kate

    Still waiting to hear back from a job interview at my dream location. It’s been two and a half weeks. I sent my thank-you emails the day after said interview. Do I send another email politely inquiring about what’s going on? They told me once they make a decision, they move pretty fast, so I should hear something “soon.” Haven’t heard a peep & it’s driving me nuts….Any advice welcome, thank you!

    • Pileofstix

      Just ask! There’s nothing wrong with checking in and will show your enthusiasim for the position. Good luck!

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      I have no idea the etiquette on this one. let us know when you find out.

    • Jenni

      Fingers crossed for you and a hug for waiting. It doesn’t hurt to send another email, but unfortunately companies will only get back to you when they’re good and ready. It was three months after interviewing for my dream job (with a few communications in between) to hear any kind of definitive answer (and even that was, “wait and see”).

    • Jess

      Did they give you a timeline on when to hear back? I usually ask for something specific – will I hear in two weeks? three weeks? If I don’t hear from you by ____, should I contact you? Because I’m… pushy I guess? I just like definite timelines, and there’s nothing wrong with that!

      At three weeks (welll 2.5, but you have the weekend now), I’d say it’s totally reasonable to call and inquire about the position and where they stand on the hiring process.

    • ItsyBit

      UGH. The waiting is the worst! I’d say it’s okay to email again now. After waiting two weeks (they said I’d hear back “within a couple weeks”) after an interview I emailed the person I interviewed with and cc’d the HR woman who set it up saying something along the lines of “I’m still really interested in the position. Could you let me know the status of my application?” Honestly I think sometimes they forget that it’s been so long because, as a friend pointed out to me, my getting hired is not nearly as much of a time-sensitive priority to them as it is to me.

      Anyway, I say send them a quick email. It worked for me! They wrote back really quickly and at least gave me a date that I’d be getting a real update.

    • Crayfish Kate

      Thank you all! I just sent an email to the hiring recruiter – I’ll keep you posted! :-D

  • Jenny

    I was awarded a really great fellowship for the third year of my PhD program. It should give me the time to really start focusing on my own research interests and get some great mentorship along the way! YAY!

    • ElisabethJoanne

      Congratulations!

      • Jenny

        Thanks! I’m super excited!

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      congratulations!

      • Jenny

        Thanks!

    • Jenni

      YAY!!!! That’s awesome!

      • Jenny

        Thanks!

  • Kirstin

    It’s been a week! Is anyone else having a hard time adjusting to daylight savings? Just me?

    I am excited to share that in addition to ordering rings and completing my first dress fitting, we have gotten almost all of our invitations out. But we’ve sadly had some unexpected surprises already. Like the friend who commented on how expensive a gift was that we registered for – I didn’t realize folks think it’s okay to critique.

    Or the friend who sent a text immediately upon receiving our invitation to ask “Are cute little kids allowed at your wedding?” I had addressed the invitation to just the couple. I took a deep breath and typed back with as much enthusiasm as you can communicate in a text , “We are doing an adults-only even, but we have a number of babysitters on standby!” I got nothing back via text, but the next day had a “No RSVP” in the mail. I totally get it and knew this was part of choosing to go the adults only route, but I cried. I guess I thought I’d have gotten a text back. I waited a day or two, and then wrote back “Got your RSVP. We are so sad you can’t make it, but certainly understand.” We’ve talked it through (her kid has non-stop meltdowns when left with a babysitter, she just can’t do it) and we’re good now.

    I didn’t realize how hard this part would be. The anxiety that comes with waiting for the RSVPs to come back. I realize it’s asking a lot for folks to attend. I know many will say no, and that it doesn’t speak to our relationships with them, but just life/expenses/conflicts, etc. But still. This feels hard.

    • Jessica

      It kind of shook me to get the “no” RSVPs, too. It didn’t help that I had my mom handle them and she would send me daily updates and commentary on who had said no. Oy…

      Glad your friend explained why! A little understanding goes a long way. Also, people critiqued your expensive items? Do they know that they don’t have to buy those things for you?

      • Kirstin

        I think they thought they were trying to be helpful. They sent a “Here’s a cheaper option” with a link. Which I guess is helpful? But just maybe not something I’d ever do. We picked the specific item out for a reason, but also have a range of prices, with no expectation for a gift at all. We did the whole honeymoon registry thing, so the actual “stuff” is pretty limited for us.

        • Jessica Nelson

          Juuuuuust curious — where are you from? And where is your friend from? Are you maybe misinterpreting her e-mail? Because I’m from the midwest, and a message like “here’s a cheaper option of something you put on the registry” would toooootally mean “your taste is too expensive.” But she might have been sending that link in the spirit of, “if nobody gets this for you, here’s a cheaper option if you wanna buy it for yourself.”

          • KC

            Pacific NW frugal friends: someone let me know that something on my registry at one store was available for cheaper at a different store, just as a helpful thing and/or an “augh, why are things not just the same price everywhere when they are identical things!” [in this case, plates]. (which in some cases would also be an opportunity to say “if you want to buy something and it’s cheaper elsewhere, feel free to do so”, if it is the same thing, and if it’s not, then not.)

            So yeah, know your people. :-)

          • ART

            This is what I like about the Amazon registry (and I know others have the same feature) – that a guest can indicate that they bought that item somewhere else and mark it as purchased. I’m the kind of person who’d feel awful if someone bought an item for $100 at Sur La Table if the exact same thing could be had for $50 from Macy’s, just because I registered at SLT, for example…so I hope people figure that out!

          • Kirstin

            We are from the Midwest, as are they. But you’re right. Totally could have been intended as option B.

          • Cathi

            And this Midwesterner was going to suggest the opposite :) aka: Option B being the likely option. My Midwestern experience is that we are a frugal, practical sort of people so while there might have been a tinge of horror (“$100 for Thing?? But Sears has it for $50!”), the gesture would totally have been intended as helpful. Seeing people accidentally waste money breaks my heart :)

    • Jenny

      Sorry, that’s really hard. I had myself all talked into being totally rational about people’s RSVPs. But it is so hard when people can’t make it for whatever reason.

    • MC

      Not just you – DST has thrown me off completely this week. I had an acupuncture appointment on Tuesday and at least 3 other people were there because they were having trouble sleeping, felt off-balance, etc. because of DST. I do love the extra sunlight, though, so I guess it’s an okay trade-off for a week of wonky sleeping.

    • http://batman-news.com jbryant6

      No, people shouldn’t critique your registry. If they think something is too expensive, then they shouldn’t buy it. But that doesn’t mean that someone else won’t. There’s a reason why it is highly recommended to register for lots of things at different price points…
      And I feel you on the no RSVPs. I had a dear friend whose wedding I attended a couple years ago tell me that she isn’t coming to my wedding because she scheduled a nose job two days before it. She did at least tell me in person rather than just RSVPing no, but it’s not like our wedding date was a surprise. It’s been set for literally a whole year. But c’est la vie!

    • ART

      Weird, disqus ate my comment? Anyway it was just a fist bump for the difficulties of no RSVPs and the no-kids talk. :/ hard stuff is hard.

    • Katelyn

      We are just about ready to send out invitations, so no RSVP disappointment yet, but a little pre-disappointment when my mom reminded me that it’s likely none of her three siblings or their families will be coming to the wedding. I understand, it’s a “destination” wedding, money, and I’m the third of four siblings so maybe a decreasing family attendance rate is normal.

      It still hurt, though – I’ve always been the oddball in my family age-wise so this is just another instance of being left out. I just keep repeating the mantra “it’s something, but it’s not EVERYTHING” (possibly an APW-ism?) – it is OK for me to feel shitty about this, but I refuse to let it ruin my overall joy for the day.

      • Sarah

        None of my mom’s side of the family came to my wedding either, and while I was prepared for it too, it still stung. I just tried to focus on all the great people that would be there, but it took a little while to not be sad.

    • Laura C

      We got our first no RSVPs this week and…it was kind of a relief? We’re so stressed about having too many people. Of course there are people I’d be really sad to not have there, but right now our big problem feels like people we were kind of counting on to not be able to make it saying they will come.

      • Kirstin

        Oh, I totally get that too. We need some folks to not come because we are trying to keep it small. I think there are just those we are anticipating, and those we aren’t.

        • Laura C

          For sure. For me, unfortunately, one of the relatively few people I will be really sad not to have there is likely to be a maybe until the last minute. And I know this and I know he will be there if he can, but I’ll still be sad.

      • MC

        I think this will be how it is for us, a little bit. Because of our big Catholic families on both sides, we invited over 200 people, but we are hoping for/expecting around 150 at most. I know I’ll be sad for people that don’t make it, but it will also be relieving on the money side of things.

        • http://batman-news.com jbryant6

          Other than the no I mentioned below, I feel similarly about the few No’s we’ve received so far. We have a similar game plan (invited over 200, hoping for 150), so some have been a bit of a relief. Usually they are the ones that we felt obligated to invite for one reason or another. It’s the close friends who for whatever reason can’t make it that hurt.

      • Gina

        Ha, this was me. I was SO happy when we got No’s. It sounds terrible, but I was like “oh, thank God. We won’t have 200 people after all.”

      • tashamoes

        We haven’t sent our invitations yet, but last night I started really worrying that this would be the case. Inviting 380, assuming only 300 or fewer will come…we’re assuming lots of people will be on summer holiday or won’t want to travel from western Canada, but who knows, right?

        I’m hoping we fall nicely into Elizabeth’s attendance % (http://apracticalwedding.com/2013/06/where-to-start-wedding-planning/) and if we don’t, then the more the merrier! It’ll be ok!

    • malkavian

      Daylight savings has thrown me the hell off too, so you’re not alone. I’m STILL exhausted.

    • MisterEHolmes

      I’m glad it was resolved well, ultimately, but if I got the “are cute little kids allowed?” text, part of me would have wanted to text back something like “No, but all the ugly ones are!”
      /passive-aggressive jokes.

    • e

      Two people who I thought would do almost anything to be there for me decided to not come (adults who have known me since I was about 5 years old). They offered reasons (I am too polite/scared to ask why someone would decline) and the reasons were crap, in my opinion. Which made me think and hope they had better reasons that they didn’t want to share, which is fine, but I was still more hurt than I thought I would be.

    • Valerie Day

      I feel like I am learning so many things that will help me when I am a guest. I so appreciate it when people express their excitement. I think sometimes as a guest I take it forgranted that the person is excited, so I forget to express MINE. I also really appreciate the notes that come with the nos. They mean a lot, especially as we were careful to invite people we wanted to come (knowing that they want to, even if not able.) I find it especially hard to ask for help. This is something spoken about in every dit wedding (delegate, so many people helped, ask for help…) but as someone who loves helping is is SO HARD TO ASK.

  • killermoebyia23

    Throughout this season of polar vortexes, the hubby and I have been spending A LOT OF TIME working on our prenup. We’re not wealthy (just paid off our student loans! whoo!) but are both practically minded and want to make sure that things like financial obligations to parents, college expense for kids, substance addiction, etc. are spelled out since these are usually not covered in state laws that govern marriage contracts. Interviewing lawyers to find out about their *actual* law specialties and determining their (mostly unaffordable fee structures) is like the 10th circle of hell. Does anyone have matrimonial lawyer recommendations in the NYC area? Do you have resources to recommend that helped you draft your prenup? Now that the weather is supposed to get better…I really want to get this thing signed, sealed, and delivered!

    • Mezza

      Hm. This is probably not the answer you’re looking for, but I’m a lawyer in NYC. I’m a relatively new one, though, and I don’t specifically do family law. I DO, however, draft complicated contracts all the time, in language very close to plain English because I work in the arts. So if you’re looking for an eye to make sure that the prenup says what you think it does, or to help you turn what you want into actual contract-y words, maybe we should talk? If you want someone to make sure that you’ve covered everything a prenup usually covers, though, I’m probably not that person.

  • Kate

    You guys, this next week I’m posing topless for my best friend’s painting for a feminist art show! I’m not someone who does nude yoga on my roof every morning, so this is awesome new territory. Also now my friend knows anytime she wants me to do something all she has to say is “But it’s for feminism.”

    • Jess

      “But it’s for feminism!” I love it. I’m using it.

    • Meg Keene

      HAHAHA. I thought you said, “on my friends plantation.” And I was like, “Well THAT’S a new twist on the debate…”

    • Laura

      You need to put that on a coffee mug.

  • StevenPortland

    This morning someone who works in my office stopped by early in the morning and offered me a warm bottle of coke. It was left over from an on-site meeting yesterday. Very strange I know, but I had to accept. You see, yesterday I picked up a UPS package from her that I had delivered to the office and when she asked if it was a present for one of my kids I said, “No, it’s for my husband.”. I didn’t think anything of it.
    But she immediately “corrected” me by saying “You mean your wife.” I looked at her with just a dumb expression on my face. I’ve known her since 2008 and we talk at least one a week about our kids, our weekends, etc. But I guess this whole time that I’ve been saying “partner” she has interpreted it to mean girl-friend. It has been so many years since I’ve had to tell someone that I’m gay. It just seems so obvious, especially since I talk about Mike and the kids all the time, all about our surrogacy details, etc.
    I felt like I was back in the early 1990s all over again. It was INCREDIBLY STRANGE to be hit with that, especially from a co-worker that I’ve known so long. I quickly brushed it off and helped her understand that I have a husband instead of a wife and went back to my office. And so this morning at 8 AM she popped her head in my office and offered me this warm bottle of leftover coke — I guess like a form of peace offering. She must feel awkward to have been unaware for so long.
    Anyway, I just had to get that off my chest. It was a very strange thing that I just don’t ever consider happening in this day and age.

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      I don’t even know how to respond to that. I’m insulted for you. And confused. Is there something in the air that is making people act really strange?

    • Jessica

      A warm coke peace offering. I think this is the weirdest thing I’ve heard in awhile. I’m sorry that woman was so…uninformed? Ignorant? At least she seems to know she was wrong.

    • Meigh McPants

      OMG, THIS. Coming out at work never gets easy/normal. Not the same thing, but I had a boss – who actually knew my wife before me, and consequently that I was teh homo – who I had to correct on the regular that my wife was not referred to as my husband.

      • Kate

        Both these situations remind me of mansplaining. Anyone want to coin a more accurate term?

        • Jessica

          heterosumptions?

          • http://andshelovesyou.com/ Lucy

            term approved. *stamp*

    • http://werewritingabook.com/ Breck

      Oh god, I get horrible reflective embarrassment, and I am cringing SO HARD right now. That lady… oof.

    • jashshea

      A warm coke? Not even a Starbucks GC?

      • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

        I didn’t want to say it, but I don’t think a warm coke is a peace offering. seriously.

    • lady brett

      is it weird that i think this story is kind of…adorable?

      also, though, that is *so strange* so, sorry about having to deal with it.

      • http://alifeworthwritingdown.blogspot.ca/ Jules

        I also think it’s adorable. That poor lady must have felt so awkward after she realized her blunder…a warm coke sounds a lot better than awkward avoidance for the foreseeable future.

    • lolauren

      It is strange, but I didn’t interpret this as mean as some others have. She clearly wanted a way to reach out again and maybe doing a big song and dance would have been even stranger. So warm coke it is!

    • Valerie Day

      Sometimes coming out is hilarious. Like when we went to register and it had my partner’s name and then Groom Groom. Which is now my new nickname. And then there are the really awkward times like when our kind doctor used male pronouns in front of my entire staff and I had to explain I am marrying a woman (trying so hard not to shame him). Its just weird when people auto correct you, and awkward, and you don’t want to make them feel bad. Good work Steven helping her.

  • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

    Maybe it sounds like I’m complaining, but I’m on day 7 of working 14 days in a row, where I will then have 1 day off before working another 8 days in a row. What March? I’m somewhat hormonal, a bit frazzled, and really digging deep in the sense of finding strength to get through this weird time where I will apparently work nearly anything in order to feel like I’m pulling my weight in my baby family.
    Earlier this week I received the good news (?) that starting on March 29th I will now be working both the nutrition and floral departments of the grocery store that I work in. When I was given the news, it was not delivered with joy at me joining the floral department, rather disappointment that I hadn’t let the floral manager know that I am working a temp job for another two weeks and so I can’t start training until the 29th. How is it that I am made to feel bad about getting a new job and working really hard? I seem to be missing the distinct element of respect in the workplace.
    Further, at the temp job where I feel like people do like me, I received a weird phone call (because I’m the receptionist) where when I was looking up the spelling of someone’s name I said “hold on, I’m a temp.” She then replied in baby talk “ooooh, that’s okay!” As if rather than saying I’m a temp, I said “I’m 5 years old and I just dropped my popcicle on the ground.” I’m not stupid, I am just trying to pay the bills.
    Somehow I am holding on to the little bit of creativity by continuing my #28 days of selfies. Today will be no. 40. Thanks again to all of you who are supporting me through this process. You have no idea how much it means to me. <3

    • http://twitter.com/mollyepollard Molly Pollard

      I’m right there with you… As you remember, I’m sure. Curse our awful employers. I’m also feeling a major lack of respect in my workplace. I was going to write a comment about it, actually. Sigh.

      • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

        Curses to them all. Hang in there. We’ll make it through.

        • Heather

          As someone who had evil employers, no respect, and a lot of emotional abuse in the workplace for three full years- you WILL MAKE IT THROUGH.

          And hugs. So many hugs.

    • Sarah E

      From what you’ve shared so far about this weird, dumb, difficult transition period you’re in, I can only say that you’re a total rockstar. I hate transition times. Good for you for powering through the suck as best you can. Here’s hoping a little more sunshine comes your way. xoxo

      • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

        Thank you so much. You know, I keep thinking this may not be the place to vent, but really, it’s just so nice to know that some of you are out there, going through similar situations and I really appreciate the virtual hugs.

        • Grace

          Happy hour is for everything :-). That’s why it’s so awesome!

    • Amanda

      I started following you on Instagram a few days ago and am enjoying your selfies project. I have nothing really to add, just hugs to you for no days off. That sucks.

      • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

        Thanks!

    • Jess

      Rock on with the Selfies! It takes strength man. I took my second selfie of my life yesterday, and I cringed immediately. Maybe I’ll start with once a week…

      • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

        I never would have been able to do it once a week. The soul searching comes from daily practice. Now if only I could start meditating…

        • Jess

          That’s pretty much fact. Whelp, maybe selfies are not for me right now. So, double props for you on doing it constantly.

    • Meg Keene

      FUCCCCCKKKK I have been there. Keep going, it’s the only way through.

      • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

        I have the saving grace of being able to hang out on the internet while I’m at the temp job, reading your site. So, thank you so much!!!!

  • Jessica

    Look at this fabric!! I want someone to make a dress of this fabric so I can wear it to weddings.

    http://www.spoonflower.com/fabric/2777066

    • Meigh McPants

      …That is the best thing I’ve seen all day.

    • Ariel

      omg I love this so much! Off with his head!

  • http://andshelovesyou.com/ Lucy

    Shameless plug! If you have a dog and like writing about him/her, consider submitting an adoption story to my website, Good Dogs & Co.! We’re hoping to feature stories from others about their animals, and eventually start featuring rescues and breeders too. In return, here is a picture of my dog, Topher.

  • Lindsay

    Question for you all – I’m getting married in a barn at a winery in September. The ceremony will be outside on the lawn so I have a note on our website suggesting appropriate footwear, and I didn’t plan to suggest a dress code otherwise. In my head, I envision everyone in semi-formal or at least upscale casual attire, so generally cocktail dresses, suits or slacks, and no jeans. I’ve had one person ask already whether jeans are okay. Do you have suggestions for what I can add to the wedding website without being pushy? Cute phrasing that is somehow clear? I definitely want to avoid ambiguous phrasing like “hoedown chic.”

    I should add that I’m planning for our invites to be somewhat formal in appearance, so I would hope that they, combined with the fact that I don’t think our family or friends would show up in jeans, would be sufficient, but adding some extra info on the website that only a fraction of the guests will read anyways is probably fine.

    • Jenni

      You could just say, in the same place as the footwear suggestion, “Attire will be semi-formal.” Upscale casual does imply [nice] jeans to me if I was going to a restaurant, so maybe just stick with semi-formal.

    • ART

      We wanted to warn people that it will probably by high 80s or 90s out, so I think said something like “we recommend choosing your finery to suit the weather!” I hope that makes the point, we’ll see.

    • GCDC

      I always like it when a dress code is specified for events. it really takes away a lot of the stress out of choosing what to wear (because I do stress about being over or under dressed, pretty much all the time).

      Cocktail dresses and suits/slacks is how “cocktail attire” is generally interpreted. You could note on your wedding website that cocktail attire is strongly encouraged, possibly with another reminder about lawn friendly shoes. If i read that on your website, and saw your invitation (and knew the time of day and location) I would know exactly what to wear.

      • E

        I think this sounds like great advice. I went to an outdoor wedding this summer and there was a teeny tiny note about footwear on the invite that I completely missed until 2 days before the wedding. I had a mini meltdown in front of my boyfriend because I was worried about a) sinking everywhere and b) looking like a fool in my heels. I ended up wearing the heels and sucking it up anyway. It was fine in the end, but I like being hit over the head with dress code expectations.

      • ART

        I like that – updating our website to say that cocktail attire is encouraged :) Thanks!

      • Laura C

        Cosign. One wedding I attended that had a totally open to interpretation note on the website about what to wear, we were staying in the hotel where it was held and I actually lurked in the lobby as people arrived and then ran back up to our room and chose one of the two outfits I’d laid out. But another time I didn’t have that luxury and was dressed wrong and I loved the wedding but still kind of wince when I look at the pictures.

        • Sonora Webster

          Ooh, sneaky!

    • Jenny

      We said something like, we are happy to have you in what ever attire makes you feel celebratory and like yourself. We will be dressed up and most women will likely wear sun dresses, or skirts and tops, and men will likely wear slacks and a shirt and tie. We added the language about what most people would wear after getting asked several times what people should wear. While we didn’t care, I always like to know what most people will be wearing. It seemed to work well and many people said they appreciated it since we were getting married in an “unusual: location (a.k.a. outside, not in a church).

    • Kirstin

      I wrote this on our wedding site. I have a FAQ page that is meant to be both informative but also funny.

      Q: “So what should I wear to this shindig?” “Should I wear a tux?” “Can you pick out my outfit?”
      A: Hmm. Maybe start with what what you might wear to a cocktail party. Dressier than sweatpants/jeans, but not quite to the formal ballgown/black tie attire. Most importantly though, wear something in which you feel comfortable and ready to have a good time. You be you! As for us dressing you, we are still busy figuring out our own outfits. In fact, we are letting all folks in the bridal party dress themselves. So we’ll delegate that task to you.

    • Kayjayoh

      Here is what we have on our website:

      Wondering What to Wear?

      Our number one wish is for you to have fun and be comfortable. There’s no specific dress code for guests: whatever clothing and level of formality makes you feel festive and wedding-like will be fine.

      We do want to let you know a few things about the venue. If possible, the ceremony itself will be outdoors, in a rooftop garden. It will be brief, but you may be standing on grass or soft earth. It will be June, so it may be quite warm. (It will be June in Wisconsin, so it may be quite cool.) The Madison Children’s Museum has many delightful features, including a human-sized gerbil wheel and the Hodgepodge Mahal—a fantastic, two-story climbing structure. You’ll be welcome to explore and play with all of these during the reception, and may wish to keep this in mind when planning your attire.

      • Jess

        “It will be June, so it may be quite warm. (It will be June in Wisconsin, so it may be quite cool.)” Oh god. I laughed real hard at that one. It’s so true.

      • Katarina

        I went to a fabulous wedding at the Children’s Museum last summer in June! Such a fantastic time, but a little chilly on the rooftop garden.

        Also, definitely take off the heels for the gerbil wheel.

    • Lindsay

      Thanks, ladies! I’m open to more wording suggestions, but now I feel better about just stating things on the website. It’s…practical! ;)

    • Rachael

      We had the opposite issue that we wanted to address on our website and in our invitations – casual dress preferred. I think definitely suggest a dress code by example of what men and women will likely be wearing on your website. What we did in addition was printed a reminder about the details (suggested attire, that it was outdoors, kids were welcome, etc.) in a little note on card stock that we then cut to size and included in the invitation envelope.

      Personally, I would appreciate the suggestion and the reminder with the invitation. We went to a wedding in the fall that we literally had no clue about the details and only found out the day before (because I made my husband start calling around as we were trying to pack) that the venue was outdoors and that the attire was formal.

  • Jenni

    The mother-related posts this week really resonated with me. I am going to make a strong effort to examine my reactions to my mom’s questions/comments/suggestions and try to determine if I would feel the same snappishness and stress if, say, my friend were saying the same thing. I know she’s trying SO hard to not be like her own mother was for her wedding, and my reactions are making her feel like she is just stressing me out. :-( Go away Teenager Jenni.

    I’ve also resolved to communicate wedding details to interested parties a little more (like bridesmaids). Because I think about the wedding so much, I try not to talk about it a lot, but I learned this week that there are people who would LOVE to chat details or even listen to me rant once and a while. In my trying to not impose, I may be making people feel excluded!

    Finally I had a Skype with the wedding planner this week and had a huge sigh of relief afterwards. The “decor” of the wedding was overwhelming me without even realizing it, and she is so calm and methodical and has really great ideas. I guess most things I see, I think “yeah that’s cute, but how much does it cost and it would probably take some effort by the planner or my friends, and we don’t really even need it ….” And since I only feel 50-75% interested in any one decor aspect, not 100% OMG-we-must-do-this, it makes me feel like I have no coherent idea or plan for what the wedding will look like. But. The meeting was very good for making more of a plan and realizing that I can use people’s help, both the planner and my loved ones who would want to pitch in.

    • Jess

      I had the same kind of reaction (though not wedding related) to the mother posts this week. My mom and I don’t have the best relationship, and I think maybe I can start to try a little bit to repair it instead of pushing her away in the name of self-preservation now. And maybe open up to R’s mom, who is really nice, but I push off because it’s a gut reaction to mothers.

      It seems like it would be better to try now than to try to figure out how to do that AND deal with wedding planning. Hey, if it doesn’t work now, then… I can focus on the planning rather than the upsetting/involving a parent because I tried already!

      To paraphrase your words, “Go away teenager Jess.”

    • Lindsay Rae

      Teenager Lindsay has been making appearances too – in fact last night I spent the night at my parents house (have been living with FH for almost a year now) and WHYY did I start acting like I was in high school?!?!

      • NicoleT

        I’m living at my parents’ house right now (moving for school soon, doesn’t make sense to get an apartment) and I definitely see the teen me pop up more regularly than I’d like. There’s just something about being home that brings out the teens in us all, I guess.

    • Louise

      “Go away Teenager Jenni” Yep, anytime I try to do anything with my mom, wedding-related or not, teenage Louise rears her head…

  • Jen

    This morning I burst out into tears when my partner told me we could not play “Air Force Ones” at our reception. (He thought it was our normal playful banter. Thank you, hormones, for making me look unstable). Needless to say, either my work needs to get less busy or my wedding needs to come so I can stop planning and being so stressed! Is it April 26th yet? (PS Is it wrong that the tears made him agree to it playing?)

    • Jessica

      Ugh stress crying! And no, if my partner started crying because I didn’t want a song to be played, that would be the fastest way for me to agree to play that song. I wouldn’t want my partner to be upset by anything that can be reversed easily on our wedding day, you know?

    • jashshea

      Well, tears or not, you were the correct one in that argument. That song rules.

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      You’re almost there! Hang on! Maybe we all need to do a little more stress crying in general. I think maybe I’d be more stable.

    • Jenny

      Tears are totally appropriate when being denied Nelly.

      • http://werewritingabook.com/ Breck

        Amen.

    • http://batman-news.com jbryant6

      At this point, irrational tears happen. I’m getting married on the 26th too!

    • Lisha

      Lol! That is such an awesome song…brings back memories! I hope your partner reconsiders – tell him the ladies at APW back you up :)

    • ASH

      April 26th! Me too! (maybe I realized we’re wedding twins in a previous Happy Hour??) :)

  • Grace

    The results of the UK almost-doctor job lottery that is FPAS were released on Monday. I got a job!! I don’t know exactly what the job will be yet, but I know it will be in Yorkshire (we currently live in Norwich). We both moved here from the south coast to go to university almost 6 years ago. We met here, it’s where we’ve spent our entire relationship together, and now in a few short months we get to start all over again. I am so excited, I get to start this awesome new chapter in my life and the person I love most is coming with me. All I have to do now is actually pass my degree… 12 weeks to go!

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      congratulations!!!

    • Heather

      Hooray!!!

  • Julia27

    I’m engaged! Well this happened two weeks ago, but I haven’t been able to catch Happy Hour. It’s been so crazy and great at the same time. We’ve been so surprised by all of the love and support from all of our friends and family! This week I’m down in Pittsburgh with my partner for Spring Break and it’s been wonderful because we’ve tackled some wedding planning (we’re having the wedding here in Pittsburgh my partner’s home base). We have a wedding date and a beautiful venue booked, so it’s been a great week!

    • Sarah

      Congrats! I’m getting married in Pittsburgh too! I live in NYC so I’m planning long distance, but my parents live there. What venue did you choose? There a lot of great ones in Pittsburgh. Mine is the Mattress Factory :)

      • Julia27

        I’m planning long distance as well from upstate NY, so that will a bit difficult, but thankfully his parents live in Pittsburgh and are very supportive! We chose the Union Project which is such an interesting space because it was previously a church. That’s so cool you are having your wedding at the Mattress Factory. I’ve seen some beautiful pictures of weddings held there. :-)

        • Sarah

          Union Project is so cool! That’s an awesome space for a wedding. And thanks! Planning is kind of hard– I just booked our photographer this week and we could only meet on skype because I currently have noo idea when we can make it out to Pittsburgh. But, it’s good that his parents are supportive. Mine are too, and they are definitely doing a lot of heavy lifting for me and will continue to do so especially when the date gets closer. Good luck with everything!

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      Yay congratulations!

    • Ali

      Congratulations!! That is so exciting. And fist-bump from another gal who’s planning a long-distance Pittsburgh wedding :)

      • Sarah

        fist bump! I think there are the three of us here, long distance pittsburgh brides?

        • Ali

          I think so – woop woop!

          • Hannah B

            Me too!! and my little 2 cents today is that I AM NOT DOING A COOKIE TABLE AND NO ONE CAN MAKE ME. But I will totally eat ALL the cookies at your weddings.

  • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

    I sent your site to my friend who is starting up her own dog training business and writing a lot of posts about it. I’m hoping she submits something!!!

  • http://batman-news.com mere…

    I have spent all of 25 seconds looking at your website and am already in love! The muddy puppy mitt is such a good idea & I am super excited about making one. As of now we just keep our pup’s half chewed towel looped on the back door and it’s not exactly welcoming. We have taught her to “show me your paws” though and she daintily hands us one foot at a time so we can clean them. It’s pretty adorable… and ridiculous.

    • http://andshelovesyou.com/ Lucy

      That is the most adorable thing I’ve ever heard. Topher knows how to shake but he will essentially punch you in the face with his paw if you lean down too far when you say it. He’s not exactly a picture of grace.

      • http://alifeworthwritingdown.blogspot.ca/ Jules

        Ugh. My pup regularly “punches” me in the face with his nose when he’s excited to see me. I’m holding out hope that one day he’ll realize how big he actually is.

      • http://batman-news.com mere…

        speaking of muddy pups, this happened this weekend…

  • http://www.etsy.com/shop/DIYIDo Laura

    I’m a bridesmaid for my best friend’s wedding this July, and yesterday she asked me if I would be not just a bridesmaid but the Matron of Honor. I’m very honored and happy to do it, but have a bit of a sticky situation I’m working through now. She already has a Maid of Honor, who is a great girl, but doesn’t really have the sort of organizational abilities necessary for the position in this particular wedding. We (the bridesmaids) have been working to plan the shower and it has been kind of a nightmare, because there just isn’t the leadership there that you need in a group project like this. The whole time I’ve been secretly wishing I could just take over and get this thing done, and now I sort of can as the co-person of honor, but I need to do it without stomping on toes.

    I know I just need to start a conversation with MOH and just work out a plan like a big girl, I’m just not sure what exactly to do. I was giving her advice and suggestions and offering to do stuff for her behind the scenes before, but she’s been unresponsive. So… do I just start doing things and act like it’s no big deal, or keep trying to get on the same page with MOH? Also important to note, time is running out for us to plan.

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      Ugh, that is sticky. Did the bride tell the other MOH that you are taking over or was this a subversive agreement?

      • http://www.etsy.com/shop/DIYIDo Laura

        Other MOH does know. But I’m not sure the other bridesmaids know. Which adds more complication. If I just take over and start calling the shots it could look weird. I did just email one of the other bridesmaids who is super organized and planning oriented and asked her opinion. I just know that how I handle this now will affect the whole rest of the experience for the whole bridesmaid crew, and I need to do my best to avoid things getting weird.

        • honeycomehome

          Is having both a Maid of Honor and a Matron of Honor a thing? I thought there was only one… (and the name just changed depending on if she was married or not).

          Either way: Just do it. Tell the bride to let the other bridesmaids know she asked you, then send a sweet but firm note to the Maid of Honor saying “I was so honored the Bride asked me to take on this larger role and I want to make sure I do right by her and step up…” and then plan away! I’d suggest erring on the “too much communication” side with the other MOH, but it doesn’t seem like there’s any reason to wait around for her to turn into a person she hasn’t shown she isn’t.

          • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

            Ooh, that’s a good point! That is a thing! Maid of Honor AND Matron of Honor!

          • http://www.etsy.com/shop/DIYIDo Laura

            I don’t think it’s that uncommon to have more than one MOH. Matron/Maid is indeed just because i’m married and she isn’t. She asked me because she needs more help and support than she’s getting from other MOH, who she asked a long time ago. So basically she’s having the same issues the bridesmaids are having. Here I come to save the day as best I can without making everything awkward and weird?

          • Sarah

            I ended up having two Maids of Honor because the one I asked first (my oldest friend) was very nearly non-responsive for most of my engagement/planning and I only thought it right to honor the person who was actually helping me with way more than I even thought to ask of her. I told all the other bridesmaids, didn’t leave it up to discussion, and my first MOH didn’t even comment. I think she knew why I made the decision, and either didn’t care or was too embarrassed to confront me about it. My second MOH was in my corner the whole time and I honestly couldn’t have done it without her. The other bridesmaids appreciated her attitude, willingness to help, and availability. All this is to say that I hope nobody makes it weird for you and you can just focus on all the wedding stuff!

          • http://batman-news.com jbryant6

            I have a Maid and Matron of honor because I had two friends I wanted to be MOHs, but one is married and one isn’t, hence the different names. But basically, they are the same thing: two wonderful ladies that I wanted to give a special designation to beyond bridesmaid.
            I asked them both at the same time though, and they are both good friends, so there isn’t any weirdness. I’m not sure how to handle this particular situation, just weighing in on the matron and/or maid part. Good luck Laura!

        • Cathi

          Is it possible to just approach it as a “hey! We’re giving Original MOH a break from all these duties and I’m heading up plans for ___”? Instead of “There has been a coup. Battle stations. Everyone feel awkward.” Treat it like you’re all on one egalitarian committee, and you’re just the point person for certain projects.

          My sister was my only attendant, but my bff desperately also wanted to do things and help out. So she asked me if it’d be rude if she asked sister to help, I told her of course not, and they more or less just shared typical “MOH duties”. It was a little funny to me, since they’re both so down to earth and practical, yet they were both tripping over themselves trying not to “offend” the other one. Bff didn’t want to “step on” sister’s toes. Sister didn’t want bff to feel like sister was just dumping the crappy work on her.

    • Jenni

      If everyone is reasonable, odds are the bride checked with the other MOH and made sure she was okay with it before asking you. You could double check that with the bride, then email the other MOH and offer a delegation of tasks. Like “I’ll organize this shower, you can hold Bride’s train.” Or something that plays to each person’s strengths and desire to be involved.

  • K

    My first Happy Hour but I’m a long(ish)-time pre-engaged lurker. Tomorrow the Man and I are going engagement ring shopping with the plan of ordering a specific one we fell in love with. I’ve been getting some push back from friends about how involved I’ve been in the whole ring-shopping process, so I kinda wanted to let an excited squeeeeee out to APW.

    We also had some fantastic/serious/fun talks about our future this week (prompted partly by some of the posts here) and I all-in-all feel like a really lucky girl with a really great partner.

    • KC

      Hooray for ring shopping!!! Hope you have tons of fun!

      (some people are totally happy with surprise rings. others are not. If anyone is in the “not” camp, then being involved is the way to go!)

    • Ali

      Squeeee and yay that’s so exciting!! We got mutually engaged and then went ring shopping together, and it was THE BEST. He said that it was much less stressful trying to guess what I would want on such a big purchase, and me because I got to have the experience of trying on a lot of different styles (and wound up with a style I never would have expected, so even if I’d given him clues we wouldn’t have ended up with the one I got). It was a lot of fun for both of us to do together! No shame in being involved in the ring decision!

      • K

        I love that you got mutually engaged! I was talking with my friend (and then later to him) the other day about how sometimes it felt like the engagement was “supposed” to be happening to me when it really feels like it’s something we’re going through together.

        We’re having a similar ring shopping experience. When we first started looking at rings, the things liked online were wildly different from what I ended up loving in person. And I think he gets worried about making such an important and costly purchase alone when it’s something I will be wearing.

        Which isn’t to say surprises aren’t fantastic and wonderful. I think most of my friends were totally hands-off, so they’re a bit taken aback sometimes. But It makes sense for us and it really is fun!

    • Jess

      Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!

  • KAty

    So awesome to see APW featuring Ron Suskind’s awesome new book (I’m partial, since I work with him). Seriously worth a read!

  • Katarina

    This has been such a long week, and I’m getting really tired of the pre-engaged state. I know he ordered the ring two months ago, but it sounds like it’s back ordered and I’m a little frustrated at the delay. Things in both families are fairly complicated, so I want to start inquiring about dates/guest lists with them, but I feel awkward doing so without it being official. I’m considering telling him that we don’t need the ring to be engaged, but I don’t want to pressure him.

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      I agree, you don’t need a ring to be engaged. But boys have such odd ways of thinking about things. Tell him to get you a $10 silver ring and call it good until you get the real thing. My husband knew he could never pick out a ring for me so he proposed with a cheap ring, which was too big, which was not my taste so we exchanged it for another cheap ring. Now that we’re married, all I care about is my wedding ring, which rocks by the way. :)

    • http://www.therewm.com/ Rachel W. Miller

      Maybe ask him to start inquiring about dates/guest lists with the families then? That removes the awkwardness for you when they say, “Oh, when is it going to be official?” He knows, he can answer.

  • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

    As far as the H&M $99 wedding dress goes (by the way I first read it as 99 cents – HA!), did anyone else find that the last line in the article “But hey, the point stands! And the dress is kind of cute, to boot.” not only dumbs down the article and the implied point of offering an inexpensive alternative to the WIC argument that the amount you spend on your wedding determines your dedication to your marriage , but actually cheapens the value of the dress itself? Who wants the dress that is “kind of cute”?

    • K

      There’s something about most of the coverage of the H&M $99 dress that I’ve seen or read that has felt very dismissive to me. Kind of like “Oh look at this cute thing H&M made. They’re calling it a wedding dress. Bless their hearts.” That and Al Roker chanting “to-ga to-ga to-ga” on the Today show. Barf.

      • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

        Ha! Bless their hearts. Worse, isn’t it cute that they think they can take the financial value out of weddings. Ha. Things like this make me want to go back and elope. Not that I had a terribly expensive wedding anyway.

        • K

          Yes! I’m not sure I was even fully aware of the insidiousness of that message until I started looking seriously at dresses and venues and flowers and cakes and this and that. I’ve definitely started to fantasize about eloping!

  • Emily

    Tell me how worth it hiring your day-of-coordinator was!

    We’re meeting with one next week and I really, reaaallly just want to give her my money so I can have peace of mind that all the things will get done. Without hiring her, we’ll have to recruit individuals to take on the various tasks and hope for the best! I hate asking for help. I’d much rather make this investment and hopefully let all our guests just be guests. Fiance’s on the fence about spending the money, and doesn’t really see the value as much as I do. It’s $500 out of our $5000 – ish budget.

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      Do it! I wish I had utilized my venue coordinator more. They just know so much more about things locally to your industry and they can help take the pressure off! My friends that did hire one, loved her!

      • Emily

        I know we wouldn’t regret it, another expense to swallow though is the tricky part.

    • Jenni

      You NEED a day-of-coordinator (or stage manager as Meg says). Whether that’s a friend to whom you assign the task, or someone you pay.

      I did this for my friend and I LOVED it. You might hate asking for help, but people who love you really, genuinely want to be there and support you on your wedding day.

      On the other hand, if you don’t have someone who can be both organized and bossy, it can be totally worth it to throw money at the problem. I’ve hired a planner for multiple reasons, but also because on the day of, I want my friends to be relaxed and present during our wedding.

      • Emily

        I asked a friend who wouldn’t otherwise come to my wedding to help out, since she loves planning parties! She enthusiastically agreed to help, but I’m really not confident she’ll follow through. So if we end up hiring the DOC, she can assist. If we don’t, we really won’t be without help altogether, it’ll just be more thinking than I want to do, if that makes sense.

      • april

        Agreed. Another option is to talk with the vendors you’ve already hired. Pretty early on in the planning process our caterer volunteered hereself as day-of coordinator, and she was fabulous. Apparently it’s a role she pretty frequently plays at weddings that her company caters (so it was already built into the price). Seriously – I don’t know what sort of magic she was doing, but no one asked me a single logistical question all night.

        • JSwen

          That’s so awesome that your caterer did the DOC for you. All of the vendors I have hired have wanted to help with coordinating the day but in my opinion, if I hired you for the food, please make the food perfect. For the photos, make beautiful photos. Etc. We have an extremely on-the-ball family member who is so excited to do DOC for us, so luckily we don’t have to navigate hiring yet another vendor.

    • MC

      We’re still 6 months out of our wedding, but we’ve already hired a DOC because my SIL said it was the best decision she made about wedding planning. Our DOC knows a lot about vendors, has great advice, and I am counting down the months until I can hand everything to her to coordinate. She also made a great point when we met with her, which was that oftentimes if there isn’t a designated point-person who manages the day, it usually falls on the women of the family to take care of things last-minute. I knew that instinctively, but my fiance didn’t and probably never would have thought of it, so while he doesn’t quite understand the value, he trusts all the women in his life that it is worth it.

    • AG

      WORTH IT. Granted my wedding isn’t until next month, but still! She’s already worth it. I’ve been a bridesmaid about 4 million times in the past two years, some with DOC’s and some without. All of the weddings were lovely and fun and wonderful, but the ones with the DOC ran so smoothly. There are just so many things that you would never think about until you need them, and a DOC thinks about it for her job.

      • Emily

        We’re just a little under 5 months out, and trying to think up what might take us by surprise is hard! That’s a big part of the appeal of having professional help!

        • AG

          Yeah, it’s hard. One friend whose wedding I was recently in had a friend do her DOCing. The friend did a GREAT job, but the rehearsal was a bit chaotic, because as organized and prepared as she was, she was still randomly remember things that needed to happen as we were practicing.

    • http://andshelovesyou.com/ Lucy

      WORTH IT. We were super lucky that we won a gift certificate from a (small, indie) wedding fair raffle. But in a do over, I’d pay full price without even blinking.

    • Katherine

      I guess I’m in the minority here, but I didn’t have a DOC, hired or otherwise, and it was fine. It probably helped that our wedding was fairly low key, as are most of our family members. No one — including me — was going to get too upset if there were any small hiccups. My caterer & photographer both gave some advice about logistics, and then various family members just pitched in with whatever needed to be done. It also helps that my husband and I are very detail oriented, so we had lists and spreadsheets for everything, which made it easy for people take on tasks fairly independently.

      • Eh

        I also didn’t have a DOC. Our MC did play point at the reception which was awesome. Just like you said, I wasn’t going to be upset if there were small hiccups and there were tons of little things like when our MC’s husband and son were missing so we had to start supper late (I was really hungry), or the candles weren’t lit, or when I BROKE a vase when I tried to put my bouquet in it at the reception, or the DJ playing the wrong song for the father-daughter/mother-son dance (I didn’t notice – my father pointed it out). Things went generally how we expected or better (like finishing pictures 30 minutes early and hanging out with our guests, and my favourite moment when my brother and SIL danced with my niece and nephew as a family during our “couples” dance). And I agree that being detail oriented helps – I planned my wedding like I would plan a project at work. A DOC would not have helped relieve my biggest stressor which was a family feud.

    • TeaforTwo

      Worth it. I would have cut almost any aspect of our wedding in order to keep our DOC, had it come to that. Would have gotten married in a much cheaper dress, would have skipped wedding cake, would have bought way cheaper booze, would have emailed invitations, would have just found the money wherever I could.

      On Friday night I was seething at my not-following-the-spreadsheet-schedule in-laws, nervous, and sick of making decisions. And when she arrived at the rehearsal and I announced “THIS IS EMMY. NO ONE ASKS ME ANY MORE QUESTIONS, JUST ASK EMMY.” it was like ten thousand pounds were lifted off my chest. She was such a huge (out of the way, understated, seamlessly perfect) part of our day, that when we were on our honeymoon our running joke every time my husband would ask me what I wanted to drink, etc. was to snap, “I don’t know, I SAID ask Emmy!”

      • scw

        FH and I spent 40 minutes in the liquor store last night trying to pick a bottle of wine and he teased me the whole time for being indecisive. I need an emmy!

    • La_Venus

      Ours came with the venue and I didn’t even think about any of the things she ended up doing all day. Seriously, I don’t know what I thought, that I would be the one running around paying attention to that stuff? No way! She was awesome and if we were doing it again I would get one even if it wasn’t in the venue package. So worth it.

  • MC

    I know I’m in the minority here (at least among my FB friends) but I didn’t really like the strangers kissing video. It was cute, I guess, but mostly just weird, especially without the context of them being actors for a commercial. Nothing about strangers kissing is romantic to me – thinking about it just reminds me of drunken make-out sessions from my college days. But maybe I am just being a matronly grouch.

    • Jessica

      I watched it with the sound off at work. Watching it that way, it was just hot.

      • MC

        I could see that. When I saw it all over FB, all my friends preempted it with comments like, “OMG this is the cuuuuutest thing I have ever seen, it will make you so happy!” And… it didn’t.

        • Cathi

          It made me feel awkward (I guess the shy, awkwardness was cute? A little?), and then creeped out. I am SO not a fan of watching people put their faces on other people.

    • JSwen

      I started watching it and turned it off before the first kiss. So awkward. I agree with you – it reminded me of my college friends who would makeout at parties “for fun” to get attention.

    • http://cafeaubride.blogspot.com/ Catherine

      TOTALLY AGREE. Especially since one of the actors in it is from my acting class. I didn’t find that video cute or romantic or deep or anything…when I read the title I thought it was about literally two strangers on the street or something – like regular, random people. not a big orchestrated thing with actors and models. I soooo don’t get why people like it???

    • Alyssa M

      Yeeeah… my only thought was “but… why?”

      why would they do that? It’s not making any kind of statement… it’s not particularly shocking… it’s just… kind of awkward.

      why is it cute? I don’t enjoy watching PDA when the people are actually into it… why would I think it’s cute when they’re strangers???

  • Sabrina

    I am getting married on MONDAY !!!

    • macrain

      Wahoo! Congrats!!

    • Sara P

      Congrats!!!

    • lolauren

      That is so exciting! Congratulations!!!

  • Anon

    Minor rant. My Fiance’s twin brother is also engaged to a girl who does not like me (his whole family is a little frosty towards me for complicated reasons that go way back to before I was in the picture). About a year ago, shortly after she started dating her now fiance, she went to my guy and asked “are you going to marry her (me), because I want to know if I should try harder to like her”… things were… not great between the 4 of us after that conversation. But my fiance just told me yesterday, that she had told him in that same conversation, “Well, I’ll still be here when you break up.”

    I both want to laugh at how wrong she was, but also, am a little pissed at her assumption that just because she didn’t like me, he and I would totally break up.

    /end rant.

    • ART

      That sucks, and I hope your fiance’s responses are sufficiently stand-up-for-you-ish.

    • NicoleT

      Wow…..well, I believe I can speak for your APW family when I say just go be your awesome self. That’s not classy and not polite of her. All that matters is that you have a guy who loves you and (hopefully) is going to bat for you.

    • Jessica Nelson

      Echoing NicoleT and ART, she sounds rude and pretty out of line. Try not to let her comments get to you!
      That being said…perhaps you should have a quick chat with your fiancé about why he told you the details of this conversation now, several years down the road. A few of my family members have said negative things to me about my fiancé as well, and while I did end up telling him their general remarks/attitudes after a week or two (because otherwise my actions/emotions wouldn’t have made sense), I have never given him a blow-by-blow description of what they’ve said. What would be the point? I don’t want him to change his behavior for them, and there’s no need for him to feel worse about his relationship with them.
      This woman will be your sister-in-law, and my guess is she’ll be in your life for the long haul, so I would ask your fiancé to 1) stand up for you when you’re not there, 2) let you know if there are any specific behaviors that really bug them that you could easily adapt (like, when you brought a dish to share for dinner, she took that to mean that you didn’t think she was a good cook, so in the future just don’t try to be nice in that specific way), and 3) don’t share any more conversation details with you if there’s nothing you can do about them anyway.

      • Kayjayoh

        I agree. Recapping a long-over convo might hurt more than it helps.

    • laddibugg

      wow….um not that I want anyone to break up but gotta love that she assumes that it’s guaranteed you guys were going to break up and she was going to be with you BIL forever….

    • JSwen

      Holy awful person! Well at least she’s not a blood relative of your fiance.

  • macrain

    I just need to make this statement in a space where no one will look at me like I have three heads.
    I am not having wedding colors.
    NO WEDDING COLORS.

    I’m getting married in the south and it feels like a cardinal sin to say this. I’m fairly certain weddings can happen without colors. When did this idea become such a wedding decor security blanket?

    • YOQ

      Someone a few weeks ago in HH referred to how people will ask you “what are your colors? what are your colors” like (I loved this image) “a flock of inebriated parrots.” It’s true. I was really surprised at how frequently I have been asked this question. BUT it is also true that YOU DO NOT NEED WEDDING COLORS, no matter where your wedding occurs. We also do not have wedding colors. We are gay, so we tend to tell people “rainbow,” as that seems fitting, or just “all of them.” But I think maybe you should start answering the parrots with something like “plaid” or “paisley.”
      You: We’re getting married!
      Parrot: OMG congratulations! What are your colors?
      You: Plaid, or maybe paisley. We haven’t decided yet.
      Parrot: *confused look*
      To be fair, most people ask because it seems like an innocuous question (unlike, say, “are you going to have kids?”) and it’s a way to express interest in the wedding planning process. But yeah. Inebriated parrots.

    • Kayjayoh

      Blush and bashful… Think maybe it was Steel Magnolias that set it up as a THING TO HAVE?

    • Ellen

      I, for one, think it’s great that you’re not having wedding colors and you’re rocking it. I also highly recommend telling All The Colors you’re using for anything, a la “white, and red, and black, and blue, and brown, and yellow, and cerulean, and aqua, and tan, and maybe some purple!”

      • Jess

        I was about to suggest this! “And what are your wedding colors?” “Well, there’s Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, Orange, Purple, a touch of indigo and lavender, some sunshine, maybe a bit of moss, white, black…. OH, and we’re considering Mauve.”

        • Laura

          This is basically what I say. “Oh, you know, fall colors. Red, yellow, orange, black, purple, navy, green, blue, pink…”

          • Musician

            You could burst into that song from “Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat”…red and yellow and green and brown and scarlet and black and ochre and peach and ruby and olive and violet and fawn and wow I can’t believe I remember so much of that song. Now I will be singing it all day.

          • Laura

            I will have to dance, too. That song is most awesome when accompanied by a dance.

    • Katy

      When we would get this question my husband would respond: “We’re not a high school mascot. We do not have colors.”

      • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

        love it!

      • Caroline

        Haha, we have a mascot AND colors. I think people think it is a little odd that we have a mascot, (for life, not just for the wedding), but we totally do. (It’s Doug, the dapper guinea pig, who is a made up character, not a pet. We do not have a pet guinea pig since I’m 99% certain our fuzzy ball of evil (aka cat) would toy with it, kill it, and eat a very small portion of it, leaving the rest on the floor.)

        • Winny the Elephant

          WEDDING MASCOT! NEW THING!

      • Laura

        Sort of plays into engagement as marketing… Colors, mascot, brand, etc.

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      Why do people care so much about this? When people asked me, I had to say blue and orange because that was kind of the colors of my dress. Of course that sounds completely batty. My colors were actually the colors of dahlias. How many colors do you think that is? grr.

      • Eh

        I said blue and orange too! I only picked colours because I was stressing my MIL out enough with my non-traditional choices that I didn’t need her to freak out over us not having colours. I figured that it was October and the leaves would be orange and I was hoping that the sky would be blue – in the end I found really awesome orange shoes with cooper toes and the sky was blueish. We had few decorations or flowers so in the end I don’t think people really noticed.

        • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

          Nice! Now I want to see pictures…

          • Eh

            These were exactly the shoes I wanted and I found them in one morning of shopping.

          • sara g

            I MUST HAVE THESE

          • Eh

            My biggest requirement for shoes was that they be flats (I had to walk up and down tons of stairs) and that they had to be comfy. These are so comfy. They are Cole Haan and have Nike Air soles.

          • sara g

            My venue is totally outdoors, so flats (or sandals) are definitely the route I’m taking. I’m writing that brand down.

          • Jess

            Yup… I need these.

          • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

            CUTE!!!!!

      • ART

        Yeah, we say purple and orange, and people sort of recoil in horror, but it’s because we’re stealing the APW idea of purple ombre-dyed table runners (28′ runners that change from dark to light and back again 3x!) and getting orange roses. Basically anything that’s purple or orange is either hand-dyed or from some organic source, like flowers, so it’s not like we went to the Wedding Store and bought every single thing in those two colors. We have lots of other colors happening throughout!

        • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

          I’m sure it will be gorgeous!!!

      • Winny the Elephant

        Next time someone asks what my wedding colours are I’m going to say “chocolate and vanilla….swirl….” and do my best crazy eyes impersonation

        • Lizzie C.

          AHAHAHAHAHAHA. Please do this.

    • AG

      I am getting married in the South and I don’t have wedding colors, so hello! Florists may faint when you tell them this, but most of them will survive. I love telling people I don’t have colors, because it makes me feel so above-it-all (which, I am not).

    • Cat

      There will be colors at my wedding, but I do not HAVE a color theme. I’m with ya!

    • MEM

      we didn’t have official colors either. stay strong because it will work just fine :)

    • JSwen

      I talked to a caterer who didn’t even know what kind of dinner I wanted, who started out the consultation with, “What are your colors? Your theme?”

      “My colors are ALL OF THE COLORS and my theme is N & J GET MARRIED.”

      She didn’t get it… or my business!

    • sara g

      Haha, I’m kind of in a similar boat. My fiance and I finally decided our color “theme” would be wildflowers. So pretty much any color we want.
      I was at a catering tasting and she asked what my colors were and I said “uh…I don’t know, we don’t really have any” and she looked at me like she’d never heard a bride say that before.

      • http://alifeworthwritingdown.blogspot.ca/ Jules

        I love the wildflower colour “theme” idea. Basically, everything that’s pretty and nothing that’s not.

        • sara g

          That’s our idea! Plus we’re getting married outdoors on a farm in the summer so it’s pretty fitting anyways.

          Here’s our venue, shameless plug:

          • Laura

            Whhaaaaat. I hope you realize this means you are now obligated to sub,it your wedding,

          • sara g

            I hope it’s share-worthy! Haha. My fiance and I joke that if it goes horribly wrong somehow, at least people will have a good view, and our pictures will be good.

    • e

      I was always like, “Um… my dress is ivory and green so… green? And… blue? M’s hair is blue.” Pretty sure I said it just like that every time I was asked because it seemed like people wanted us to have colors or something and I didn’t know what to say. But my flowers and the center piece flowers were yellow (as were the center piece lanterns) and the wedding party and parent flowers were white. The favors included custom dice that were green and blue (with gold for the images and numbers).

    • Laura C

      Ha. I got a text from my FMIL saying “People are asking if you’ve given me a color for the wedding…?” and I was like “yeah, wedding colors are a big thing, but it probably won’t surprise you to hear we don’t really have any. Wear what makes you happy!” I’m glad I have an FMIL who was confused by the question rather than one who was asking it.

    • Rachael

      I didn’t have wedding colors either and yep, that confused a lot of people. We did end up having a bit of a slightly underlying green theme because we chose a moss green on our invitations and my sister ended up buying a moss green dress to wear in the wedding on her own accord (I gave her full reign of that, so it was really coincidental). For flowers we did what was in season where we were married and a big variety of annuals, so lots and lots of colors with, I guess, green as the underlying theme.

      Definitely had this exchange:
      “But you HAVE to have wedding colors!”
      “It turns out that no, I don’t.”

      • Cathi

        Had the same coincidence, sort of. My sister picked a dress to wear (since she was my only attendant), and we used that dark purple as a baseline for the invitation design since we couldn’t for the life of us just pick a damn design.

        Husband’s side of the family then all decided to wear something purple to “look like they were in the wedding”. At first I was like, “how did you all know my sister was going to wear purple?? You’re all psychic!” and then my sister in law looked at me like I was insane, because it was obviously our theme–the invitations were purple. Duh.

    • Cc

      lol, my fiance and I had our favorite combo of couple colors since we started dating, so choosing our colors was the easiest decision ever. I think it really is a wedding decor security blanket especially for someone a bit more aesthetically challenged like me. The hope is that if you limit the color palette, everything will match…right? I’m going to keep on pretending this works.

      • Cc

        but the thing about a theme…I still have a hard time not giving off the bewildered cross eyed look and wanting to back away. Getting married is the theme!

        • Laura

          I give off the bewildered cross eyed look intentionally to prevent more questions.

    • Ariel

      My color is summer :-)

    • KerryMarie

      “what are your wedding colors?” is my least favorite question. Whenever I’m asked (which is waaaay too often; seriously, why IS this such a security blanket question??) I launch into a very lengthy reply about all my favorite colors and why I love them all and why shouldn’t I have to choose…it’s my own little revenge against the question. Thought I’d say something simple and tidy like “peach and blue”? Think again!

    • Winny the Elephant

      I don’t have wedding colours either. People ask me ALL THE TIME and my reply is usually “I just picked whatever colour looked nicest for each thing and the linens that come with the hall are white” they look at me like I have 3 heads….

    • Chiara M

      My wedding theme is “wedding”. The colours are “sparkles” unless I choose to have a different colour for the thing I’m currently choosing a colour for. People want me to coordinate and I don’t let them.

    • Laura
    • Heather Strange

      I do not have wedding colors either! Hard concept to explain to people, though I don’t think it’s such a weird thing not to have! We don’t really have a bridal party either so…

  • http://twitter.com/mollyepollard Molly Pollard

    My fiance has the job in Denver, y’all. No offer yet (it’s an off Friday for him, so we expect it early next week) but they have already ordered his computer out there, which is about as good an indication as any. I’m so excited for him (hell, US).

    My job still sucks. The post the other day about motherhood, where the author talked about coworkers not seeing each other as human? That totally spoke to me. My boss seems to think I’m a complete idiot just because I’m the receptionist. According to my coworkers, he thinks every receptionist he has is an imbecile so I shouldn’t be surprised. I’m still pretty damn offended though. He calls me “twinkle-toes” which to me indicates that I have no brain. He also questions my ability to remember things (I have forgotten some things, it’s true, but nothing to warrant being constantly questioned) and just today got mad at me for scheduling a phone call for him during our meeting time, when it wasn’t scheduled during our meeting time at all. Little things like that, where he’s always going to be right, regardless of whether he is or not.

    I’ve talked about how evil they are before (and they are truly so awful to their employees, it’s true), but I’m starting to lose my patience. I hope I can make it the next two months in this job without going crazy. I can’t handle being berated, or being told that I’m not doing a good job. I got an awful review a couple of days ago and was told they give everyone a bad review, but that doesn’t make me feel any better.

    I can’t do this. I’m just so thankful I have a reason to escape.

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      Yay for your fiance’s job!!!

      OMG! That is so awful! He sounds worse than my last boss and that’s saying a lot. I just can’t understand how people get into positions of power when they are such ass holes! I don’t understand how people don’t have respect for others! This makes me so angry.

      But you know you’re out of there in two months now, right? Just count down the days. I believe in you. Sending internet hugs!!! <3

      • http://twitter.com/mollyepollard Molly Pollard

        Yeah, and that’s just him. His wife is a thousand times worse. She makes him seem nice.

        • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

          Can you quit early? I am dying to get you out of there right now.

          • http://twitter.com/mollyepollard Molly Pollard

            I’ll probably give my two weeks notice in late April and have my last day be a week before the wedding, so I can be free of stress leading up to it. I can’t quit much earlier than that unfortunately. My brother keeps telling me I should just find another job for the next couple months, but I worry about how that will look… my last job was a 3 month long temp thing… :(

          • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

            If they gave you a crappy review then screw them. Do you have anyone there to give you a reference?
            You can also argue out that the 3 month long temp job was because you were moving. There are ways to spin these things.

          • http://twitter.com/mollyepollard Molly Pollard

            The temp job followed a layoff that was entirely outside of my control, so I can spin it that way. This job I can say that we were moving so I left. That’s why I’m trying to hold onto this one for as long as possible… Plus I need money. :(

          • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

            I hear you with the money thing. Especially with a move and a wedding coming up. I just hope you don’t stay out of desperation. The one thing I will say about my situation is that I am out from under the kind of disrespect that you are getting now. I fully believe that it is my choice to stay at the moment and that I can and will get another job, a better job, a higher paying job. I just haven’t gotten it yet. My self-respect is key though.

          • http://twitter.com/mollyepollard Molly Pollard

            It is really difficult for me because I know I’m worth more than this but I took the job despite what I now see were obvious red flags in the interview, so part of me feels like it’s my fault or something. Not true, but it’s something I’m dealing with. Blah.

          • http://twitter.com/mollyepollard Molly Pollard

            I have a coworker I know would give me a reference. She’s not a supervisor but I’m sure she would be happy to help me out.

    • Michelle

      Late to the game (I was working all day yesterday) but…. YES! I’m not kidding when I say we were in the exact same situation. I hated my receptionist job and was so relieved that I had an easy out when he got a job in Denver. You mentioned an off Friday, does he work for Lockheed? Because that would just be too much.

      • http://twitter.com/mollyepollard Molly Pollard

        He does indeed. Are you me? Ha!

        • Michelle

          That is SERIOUSLY weird. Enjoy the relocation, having them do everything for you is the best. When will you be headed this way? I think you’ll love Denver!

          • http://twitter.com/mollyepollard Molly Pollard

            I’ll be joining him out there in late May directly following the wedding. He’s going to have to move there in April. We’re just hoping we can postpone relocation stuff until May… I’m sure they’ll work with us.

            Not having a job when I move out there might be a bit rough for me, but I’m so excited to start our marriage there. I think it’s gonna be nice and everyone I’ve talked to has raved about Denver…. We’ve lived in the deep South the majority of our lives, so it’ll be nice to get a change of scenery!

          • Michelle

            :) Awesome. The job market is pretty good out here, I’m sure you’ll find something. Try to embrace the double major life change and just remember that it’s short-term and at the end you will have a home and a husband. We did a big move (to Virginia before we came here) about a month before our wedding too and it’s chaos, but then you come out the other side, I promise!

  • Kayjayoh

    Someday, I will have a dog…and an adoption story. Someday.

  • Winny the Elephant

    Research says cohabitation before marriage doesn’t increase your chance of divorce. WELL DUH!!!!!
    There was never a good reason why it would! How long have we feminists been telling you that the studies that correlated cohabitation and divorce had skewed samples?!

  • KC

    Also, happy Pi day to all!

  • Kayjayoh

    Eek! We sent out most of our invites on Monday. We did find out that VistaPrint shorted our order by one. We asked them to send us the last one, and they said they don’t do less than 100, so that’s what they sent us. LOL. So the rest of them get put together and mailed this weekend, and then we are semi-jokingly thinking about using all the extras for craft projects at the wedding.

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      That’s so funny, I think Vista Print sent me 110. But yay for sending them out!

  • Kayjayoh

    Fictional feminist boyfriend = best thing today

  • http://twitter.com/mollyepollard Molly Pollard

    On a happier (wedding-related) note, I called and ordered mine and my sister’s bouquets and my fiancé and his friend’s boutonnières today, so there’s another thing to cross off the list. We still have to block off hotel rooms. That’s going to be fun. I’m glad most of the big stuff is taken care of now… I’m getting tired of thinking about wedding planning– I just want it to happen already.

  • Jess

    I scheduled a therapy appointment for my depression! It’s for over a month away because that’s how mental health is, or something, but I got over the hump of “Maybe it will just go away if I pretend it isn’t happening any more.”

    I’m feeling a little bit celebratory, and don’t really feel like apologizing for that. So, go me!

    • Heather

      GO YOU! I swear, that is pretty much the hardest call to make. Rock on!

    • malkavian

      Yeah, waits on doctors appointments suck. When I went to neurology for migraines it was near 6 months.

    • lolauren

      It’s a brave thing to do. You should certainly be proud :)

    • JDrives

      Go you! No apologies necessary!

    • Lian

      That is so good! I am very familiar with “If I just ignore it, and yell at everyone who brings it up (read: fiance), it will all go away”. I’m working on it :) Working on it is good!

      • Jess

        I fully feel you on the “yell at everyone who brings it up”. My best friend in the whole world has been yelling at me to schedule an appointment, saying she wouldn’t shut up until I gave her a time and date. She’s awesome.

        Working on it is super good.

    • Caitlin_DD

      You SHOULD feel celebratory! Sometimes it just won’t go away, and that’s it. If you need a depression buddy… I’m here (random stranger on the internet that I am).

      • Jess

        Hooray! Deal, we’re now official depression buddies. Friday night = very bad (Note to self, drinking and depression don’t mix). Sunday during the day = very good (baking cookies and watching Fringe are excellent remedies).

        • Caitlin_DD

          Yeah, definitely go easy on the booze. (And though, this never works for me) apparently go easy on the coffee if you’re more anxiety-heavy than depression.

    • Winny the Elephant

      Umm ya I live in Canada and it can take me a month to get into my family doctor so ya I feel your pain

    • http://alifeworthwritingdown.blogspot.ca/ Jules

      Go you! That’s a big step and you should totally celebrate. Treat yourself :)

  • Kayjayoh

    Also: Happy Pi Day everyone! Fiance and I are planning on having pizza (at the place that is catering our wedding) and then heading to a local diner for some pie.

  • Gina

    I’M DOING IT.

    PSA– I’m horribly afraid I’ll be one of *those* parents, just based on how much I love my dumb dog.

  • Heather

    We “rescued” our dog, who was an abandoned stray, and couldn’t find his owner. It’s a story full of love and friendship and many, many cities. Does that count?

    Also, he’s super cute, no?

    • http://andshelovesyou.com/ Lucy

      Totally counts! For us, adoption is a wide term meant to include everything, whether you got your pup from a breeder, shelter, rescue, or a box on the side of the road. And he’s totally cute.

      • Heather

        Awesome! And, thanks :)

    • ART

      sssosooooo cute. omg.

    • Ariel

      omg the cuteness

  • NicoleT

    Man, that Disney article…that was intense. I’m so glad that article is out there. I’m a huge proponent of mixing art and science (hello music therapy and neurology!) and stories like these just help me to convince the naysayers that they work together. I’m so happy things are working out for that family!

    Also, this needs to be in all caps since no one (to my knowledge) has said it yet:

    HAPPY PI DAY!!!!

    Go eat some delicious pie!!! I’m about to get up and make me a mini lemon meringue pie (or key lime, or banana cream…)

    And finally, I have venue choices that are reasonable in LA! I still have yet to bite the bullet and talk to the FMIL about her budget, but I have found some gorgeous venues (we’re talking beachside or elegant downtown) that would give us a $20-25,000 wedding in Los Angeles for around 130 people. I’m considering that a huge win. (It would probably be less if everyone would just let me DIY/DIT everything, but alas, I’m only allowed to do some of the things that way). Happy Friday!

    • Katarina

      Yay pi day!

      And ooo… where are you looking in LA?

      • NicoleT

        Malibu West Beach Club, The Grand hotel in Long Beach, Ca’ Del Sole in Toluca Lake, Yamashiro in Hollywood, The Majestic in Downtown, and Villa del Sole in Fullerton, just to name a few. I’m really excited!

      • NicoleT

        Huh, apparently Disqus ate my reply. Well, we’re looking at the Grand Hotel in Long Beach, the Malibu West Beach Club, Orcutt Ranch in West Hills, Yamashiro in Hollywood, and Villa del Sole in Toluca Lake, among others. I’m really excited!

  • MC

    Good news on the job front for Fiance & me: I had lots of good professional development opportunities come up and am feeling like a burgeoning young professional in my city, and Fiance just sent me a text saying he got some good news today regarding his job, which I am pretty sure means he got a well-deserved promotion. After two weeks of intense car/money stress, all of this is very nice.

  • malkavian

    Aw, not looking for stories about rescue kitties I guess, though? Even though I love both, hubby is allergic to dogs, so its all the cats for us.

    • http://batman-news.com jbryant6

      Ditto this. I rescued a cat from a kill-shelter in Dallas almost 6 years ago now. Best cat I’ve ever had. She is chocolate brown, small, and greets me at the door every damn day. She’s great with people (except really big crowds) and will even play fetch with the right toy.
      The fiance and I want to rescue two pups after our wedding, probably labs because there is a great lab rescue in our city. Plus I’d prefer our pups be outdoor dogs – we have a huge backyard, and I’m sure they’d enjoy it out there way more than being cooped up in our house :)

      • http://alifeworthwritingdown.blogspot.ca/ Jules

        Just a note, when I rescued my dog I had to sign a form stating that he would not be an outdoor dog (or be left alone on a chain). Although he loves the outdoors (except when it’s cold), a lot of rescues have already spent their whole lives outside so shelters are very wary of sending them to someone who plans for them to be outdoor dogs.

    • http://andshelovesyou.com/ Lucy

      Welllll, we’re thinking of doing a cat takeover month (because come on, kitties! I have two of them myself) so if you send it, then we’d have more material to tempt ourselves with! :)

  • Eh

    I just want to say I hate daylight savings time – I have missed the bus twice this week and forgot my purse at home, and slept in almost every morning.

    That said, my week ended on a couple high notes – I signed my contract for my promotion today :D and the registrar generals office is going to fix our marriage certificate since they spelt my middle name wrong (the only name I spell the “normal” way).

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      Ugh on the daylight savings front. I had to work until 7:30 on Sunday and then get up 2 hours earlier than normal (which meant it felt like 4:45 am) on Monday. I think I was acting a little delirious. Somehow I rallied.
      How do you spell Eh wrong? (;P just kidding) Yay for them fixing it!!!

      • Eh

        Funny thing is that “Eh” is partially based on my middle name. My parents gave their kids first names that they thought were normal so we wouldn’t have to spell them out all the time (our last name has to be spelt out all the time because it is pronounced the same as an English word but spelt differently). My first name happens to be a name that is unisex and has two common spellings (both which are equally used). My middle name is a normal name, spelled the normal way. It was missing a letter. The office of the registrar general was a pain to deal with since they apparently only do things through fax and snail mail (I got a letter today saying that they will send me a new marriage certificate if I mail them back the one with my name spelt wrong – they had my email and my phone number).

  • Winny the Elephant

    Can anyone recommend somewhere to get cute but cheap thank you notes for wedding gifts?

    • lady brett

      no real ideas, but i just used my stationery. (the same stationery we used for the wedding, so it was thematic, i guess, but it was all really simple – just nice paper with matchy envelopes.) i did adorn them with my exclamation point stamp.

      • Winny the Elephant

        I would do that but I made our invitations but they took me hours (they look awesome) and I have a thesis due in a month….so umm ya that’s not gonna happen.

        • Kayjayoh

          For my thank you cards, I simply took the font that I’d used as a them for the rest of the stationery, made the front of the postcard say “Thank You” in a friendly color and left the backs blank. it took me about 5 minutes to design. (We aren’t sending them as postcards, and bought envelopes for them all, but the size of a postcard is perfect for a sincere thank you note.)

    • Lindsay Rae

      Target had really pretty engagement thank yous – I’m sure they have wedding ones as well!

      • http://kara-tanoue.blogspot.com/ Kara T

        Seconding Target- they have all sorts of pretty thank you notes.

        • Lynsey

          Yes, Target! I bought several sets of adorable Thank you cards in packs of 20 for $5.99. I thought that was a pretty good price.

      • Winny the Elephant

        Thank you all for the target suggestions. I checked my local target and the selection sucked (I live in Canada and the Target stores are a mess up here)….

        • http://alifeworthwritingdown.blogspot.ca/ Jules

          Such a mess. I was so excited because I hear all these Americans talking about Target all the time and…major disappointment. Cruise through a couple dollar stores or even just check Walmart.

        • Cathi

          Can you order offline? That’s what I did when my local Target only had half of the ones that I wanted in stock.

    • Eh

      Dollar store. We bought the ones for our wedding gifts to match our invitations, but all of the other thank yous (shower gifts etc.) were on ones from the dollar store.

    • http://brokensaucer.blogspot.com/ sera

      If you’re a little into making your own, you could go the Vista Print route.

      • Kayjayoh

        Word.

  • MisterEHolmes

    My wedding is three months away from TODAY. Which just knocks my socks off. Amazing, can’t believe it.

    I had downtime at work, so I started building a mock-up of the table seating chart–and I’m twisted enough that I actually kinda LIKED it. It was like a logic problem: If Teen Cousin A is too insecure to be seated alone, which family members can he be seated with? If Guest 43 is probably a tad conservative/offensive, where should I seat them in relation to Gay Friends 34 & 35?

    Found seats for pretty much everyone…now just have to actually send out the invitations. Ha!

    • KC

      Yay, fun puzzles! :-) I think that the more “chores” in life (which includes weddings) that can be turned into fun puzzles, the better.

      I also still think color-change Silly Putty, giant bubbles, and hula hoops are pretty cool, though. So there’s that. I may be only *part* grownup…

  • Kelly

    Last night:
    Me: “The less I try to make them look pretty, the nicer they look!”
    Fiance: “That’s sort of the theme of our wedding, isn’t it?”

    • Sarah E

      Nailed it.

  • Gen

    A question: who got married before actually getting married? I’d like to have a small city hall ceremony with immediate family a few days before the big shindig. My fiance’s family and mine don’t know each other very well – they’ve only met once – so it seems like a great way to get them together. I also really love San Francisco city hall. But because our wedding is a destination for most of the guest list, I’m afraid that people will feel cheated, like they didn’t get to see the real thing. Ok, they won’t get to see the signing of the paper, but they will get to see the vows, and listen to the music, and spend time with all our loved ones. Any thoughts?

    • La_Venus

      Hmm we got legally married well before we had a reception, which doesn’t sound like exactly what you are talking about, but I had the same fear that people wouldn’t travel to the reception if that was all it was. They did. We were just super up front – I didn’t want there to be any secrecy – and people followed our lead. I think just be clear about your plans (we are doing our legal ceremony ahead of time), and then emphasize how excited you are to celebrate with everyone. You want everyone to feel important and wanted, so just tell them they are and hopefully that will blunt any hurt feelings/confusion. Really explain that you still plan to have a community ceremony and that they are an important part of that so they don’t think it is just a reception.
      But also, there are much lower key ways for your families to get to know each other. And I would just make sure that your reasoning is solid on wanting to do it that way because it is an extra 20 steps to plan. And if people are weird and decide not to come, well, that’s how it is.

    • JSwen

      My cousin did this and didn’t tell anyone other than her immediate family. Those of us who knew didn’t talk about it and it didn’t distract us from the awesomeness of her church ceremony or reception. Those who didn’t know… didn’t know!

    • p.

      My husband and I did this and it was ideal for us. We got legally married at SF City Hall with immediate family only and then we had a wedding w/ a ceremony and reception two days later.

      If you decide to do a two-part event, I think it helps to be clear about how you see each part. In my case, I saw City Hall primarily as a way to make our commitment legal: it was what the state needed us to do in order to consider us married. And I saw our ceremony/reception as our wedding — it was what we (and our families and friends) needed to consider us married. We didn’t mention our City Hall ceremony to anyone before hand, and we didn’t feel like we needed to tell anyone about it because our friends and family were invited to what we considered our wedding.

      • Gen

        Thanks for the replies, everyone! It was great to hear different perspectives. I really want to have my cake and eat it too – i.e. have the small beautiful SF city hall ceremony and the big touching community wedding. To us the latter is the Real Thing, but I realize not everyone will feel that way. I’m hoping that with a lovely outdoor ceremony and a good enough party, anyone who is upset they didn’t see the legal part will get over it.

    • http://alifeworthwritingdown.blogspot.ca/ Jules

      It’s totally up to you what you tell people but they probably won’t even know if you don’t tell them you’re already legally married. Lots of people don’t sign the papers during the ceremony anyways.

    • Lizzie C.

      We quasi-eloped on a Wednesday evening in December (12/12/12, word) with only our parents and one of my siblings present, plus the friend who officiated. We told close family and friends in advance, and most were supportive, but others were hurt even though we assured them we’d have a wedding-y party in the spring. Apparently there’s something magical about seeing The Real Thing, which it turns out is the legal ceremony. And to this day I refer to our elopement as our wedding and our later party as our wedding fiesta, because there IS something special about the legal ceremony. We tried to make the wedding fiesta feel special too with a ring-warming and fancy vows, so maybe some ritual like that can satisfy those who miss your City Hall ceremony (which sounds lovely!)

      You know, people are going to get bent out of shape no matter what, so do what makes you happy and don’t spend too much mental energy on the naysayers.

    • Tess Wilson

      Last year I went to the weddings of two couples who had gotten legally married months before the wedding- in both cases they eloped at city hall for health insurance reasons- and both weddings were as weddingy as anyone could ever hope. A few close friends and family knew the full situation (and sadly, a few of them gave the couples a hard time) but everyone else was thrilled that their health was taken care of AND they were getting happily married. A wedding is a wedding!

    • http://www.smittenchickens.com/ Sarah Hoppes
    • Stella

      We did this (it’s mandatory where we live), and honestly that day was one of the nicest parts of the whole wedding thing — we really got to spend time with the family and it was lovely and relaxed. We just had a really tiny reception at home afterwards with super easy (i.e., bought from a shop) food and quite a bit of champagne. The big wedding still felt like a wedding though — and I don’t think anyone felt particularly cheated!

  • NicoleT

    AARRRGGHHHH!! I have had it! I try to be nice and compromise with my FMIL and what do I get? Monetarily manipulated. Her budget for the wedding is now the *exact* budget of the venue that SHE wants. (And it’s a really low budget since she’s worked there for 16 years). My fiancé and I have made it clear to her (I thought) that we don’t want that venue. I only have so much money and I don’t want to pay for the majority of her guests (120 vs. my 15). Help me APW, you’re my only hope. :(

    • YOQ

      Ugh, I want to say something useful, but I got nothin’. So sorry you’re going through this. Hugs. You know all the APW wisdom (boundaries, communicate [esp. w/ your fiance], be clear on what matters to you and why, etc.) but sometimes it still sucks.

      Is it too late to elope?

      • NicoleT

        Hah, yeah, I was definitely considering eloping earlier. If my fiancé would go along with it, I would definitely do that. He wants all of his friends and family around him, though (and I get that).

        I really appreciate the support. Right now, I’m trying to talk myself out of doing something crazy (like giving ultimatums to her such as “you’re not inviting more than 50 guests. I’ll pay for them, you pay for your own meal, and you don’t give any speeches.”), but so far it looks like I’m riding the crazy train down to potentially-a-bad-idea-ville.

        • YOQ

          Okay, this idea is a little off the wall, but maybe it would help to approach this as a negotiation–and I’m thinking more about negotiating the terms of a job offer, or a house purchase, not about negotiating a relationship. I’m going to suggest reading _Getting to Yes_ (Fisher, Ury, and Patton) and seeing if you can apply their ideas to this situation. I read it maybe a year and a half ago, and I’ve found the concepts pretty helpful for thinking about all sorts of situations where I have to find a compromise with people that we both can live with.

          • Violet

            Oh my gosh, so much seconding Getting to Yes. It teaches how to negotiate when you want to preserve a relationship. Short summary: a negotiation like this should not be: you’re here, shes there, and you battle wills ’til you meet in the middle. Instead can be: she has values, you have values, and how can you creatively problem-solve to make sure everyone’s goals are met. It sounds weird, but you’ll want to do LOTS of hearing her, where she’s coming from, supporting her, and understanding what her needs are. Only once she’s clear you get her, then introduce the idea of how you’re going to work together to come up with a creative solution that can address her concerns (while holding firm that yours are just as valuable). It’s not a long book, definitely read and apply as best you can! You’re in a really tough spot!!

          • Lizzie C.

            The negotiation literature is fantastic and totally empowering. That said, I literally have a master’s degree in conflict resolution, and when it comes to family, even that training goes out the window. It’s hard to negotiate when emotions are so high. NicoleT, have you thought about intermediate options besides the ultimatums you mentioned? As in, scenarios that might not be 100% what you had in mind, but that you could live with (and afford) if you had to forego FMIL’s financial contribution? Having to say “Fine, we don’t need your money anyway!” sucks, but I think your wedding is too important to let your fiance’s mom call all the shots.

          • NicoleT

            Thank you! I’ll go buy that book on amazon. In this case, I actually think a book like that would help a lot.

    • Guest

      That’s tough, I’m sorry. What is your fiance’s reaction to all this? Is he willing to communicate with his mom?

      • NicoleT

        He is not okay with it either. I wasn’t privy to their phone conversation, but my guess is that he straight up yelled at her (based on what I know about previous shenanigans). She’s very stubborn and very persistent and, unfortunately, her four kids are usually reduced to yelling at her if they want to get anything done because she will not listen to logic. With quiet, logical discussion on someone else’s side comes manipulation on her side.

    • Winny the Elephant

      I would just tell her that you would rather book the venue you want, keep the guest list low and pay for it yourself. She can choose whether it is more important to her to have her guest list or her venue.

    • Winny the Elephant

      Honestly paying for our own wedding was the best decision for us because it left us in control of the budget. When parents asked for guests that weren’t on my original list, I said sure but you’re paying for them to attend.

      • NicoleT

        That makes a lot of sense. I have that arrangement with my parents. I’m going to run some numbers and see what I can do. My parents gave me some money, an amount agreed upon since I was ten years old. They see it as a gift and are fine with whatever I want to do with it. My FH’s parents, as my dad likes to say, see their paying for some of the wedding as a way of having some control.

        • Kayjayoh

          Particularly if your *own* guest list is so small, if you are able to take control of the budget you may be paying for it yourself but you can also have a much smaller wedding (and therefore be *able* to pay for it yourself) on your own terms.

  • Ariel

    Ugh, I’m feeling super overwhelmed lately. My wedding is in 3.5 months and I had another anxiety dream last night. This time, I dreamed (dreamt?) that my wedding was in one week and I had the same exact amount of shit done as I do today (which would be absolutely terrible). In happier wedding news, my invites should be here on Monday from Catprint and my fiance got his wedding band in the mail (and we both love it and it fits!). I just can’t help but feel like there are 3590709370r20537 things to do and not nearly enough time. And I cancelled my massage envy membership today, because, money. :-(

    Also, ew DST – I do not like my morning commute to be in the dark, especially when it’s mad cold out. Is winter ever going to end?!

    • Rachael

      Haha reading this just gave me a flashback to a dream I had a few months before our wedding. I still hadn’t found (or tried to find) a dress (in real life, not just the dream) at that point. I dreamt that I showed up at my wedding in knee-length plaid shorts and a baggy grey muscle shirt (a la my middle school days? I don’t know where that came from). To my horror (because my outfit wasn’t horrifying enough), the guests were all wearing 19th century ballgowns to our casual barn hoedown-style wedding (I was reading Anna Kerenina at the time…). Possibly the most ridiculous anxiety dream I’ve ever had.

      • Ariel

        Hahaha, I love it. In the last one I had, I forgot to buy booze. Now that would be a travesty!

      • YetAntherMegan

        A few weeks ago I had one where our venue had been painted orange, the minister was MIA, my dress was some weird combination of styles that just don’t work, and our “limo” was basically a wagon (think little red, not hayride) chauffeured by cats.

        • Ariel

          Thank you for making me laugh! I love the little red wagon chauffeured by cats, wtf.

  • JSwen

    Has anyone tried Tradesy for a dress? I’m seriously going down the rabbit hole of non-bridal store dress shopping – checking retail stores, department stores, designer websites. Maybe I should limit my options!

    • Emily

      If you haven’t checked out modcloth, I’d recommend it. Retail stores have been a total wash for me so far. Good luck!

  • Lindsey d.

    Jumping in late to say I’m getting married tomorrow!!! We have decorated and rehearsed. On our way to the rehearsal dinner now!

    • Lynsey

      Congrats!!!

    • Ariel

      Congratulations!!! I can’t wait to see how amazing all of the gold glitter is!

    • http://cuvikingadventures.blogspot.ca/ Jenny/Adventures Along the Way

      I hope it is a wonderful weekend!

  • Lynsey

    I’m getting married in one month (yay!). I’m planning on doing my own makeup, and have really enjoyed the APW tutorials. However, my question for all the brides out there (and for all the people who know more about makeup than I do) is – what was worth it? What do you think is the best/most important thing about wedding makeup? Long-lasting lipstick? good primer? concealer? Spill! I’m going shopping this weekend and I want your advice on what I *need* to buy.

    Thanks!!

    • EAO

      I found a makeup person who did the whole thing for $100. For me to buy the makeup I’d need (concealer and primer etc) to any more than my barely there normal makeup, I’d have had to spend well more than $100….Just a thought.

      • Lizzie C.

        Yes, the stylist I saw told me the same thing, and when I went to Sephora with the list she gave me, I knew she was right. Good advice that if you don’t want to invest in fancy makeup you’ll rarely wear, you might as well let the pros handle it.

    • Lizzie C.

      I went kind of minimal so I can only speak to a few things, but for eyes, my gel eyeliner stayed put all night, and for lips, using a lip pencil for color under a sheer balm saved me from reapplying lipstick over and over. No brand preferences; I used drugstore stuff.

      On a side note, I had a makeup tutorial in advance at a chain salon, and the stylist recommended “HD powder” (high definition powder?) over my foundation to give me some kind of magical complexion for photos. I passed on it because it was super expensive and sounded like hokum. Anyone else hear of this HD powder stuff? Is it for real?

      • laddibugg

        Ahhhh….it works but you have to be VERY VERY light handed with it. ESPECIALLY if you’re taking pictures. Too much and you look like a ghost.

    • Cathi

      Actually buying foundation (I got that L’oreal Infallible liquid stuff) and practicing using it a couple times made a gigantic difference for me. I never bother with the stuff in everyday life, but having it even out my skin tone made me look like a porcelain doll. In a good way. It was amazing.

      Excellent gel eyeliner was also a great investment. And as far as I can tell, the #1 makeup rule is ANY new mascara is a zillion times better than ANY old mascara. New mascara always makes me feel like a movie star.

    • emilyg25

      Totally worth it: good foundation that actually matched my face, eye primer, and mattifying powder (I got married outside in August). And my favorite: Urban Decay All Nighter setting spray. My makeup looked the same at 1 am as it did when I put it on 12 hours earlier.

      I skipped the lipstick because I knew I’d want to kiss my brand new husband, and I hate the way long-lasting lip color feels. So I just used my regular tinted gloss (Clinique Chubby Stick) and reapplied as necessary.

    • Stella

      So I’m late for this — but absolutely swear by Urban Decay All Nighter! It’s a make-up setting spray (a bit like hairspray for your face, but not smelly and horrible like that sounds) and it really keeps your make-up on for a long time. It’s really the best! Just like spraying some water on your face but it really keeps everything where it should be for hours!

      • laddibugg

        ++ this. I really works and it’s not drying at all.

  • Ariel

    Because I must post pictures of my dog (who we adopted 1.5 years ago) whenever possible…

  • http://cuvikingadventures.blogspot.ca/ Jenny/Adventures Along the Way

    Well, winter just keeps sticking around, but I am choosing to believe spring will come one day, and the snow and ice will thaw. On a positive note, I have a cool artistic opportunity that will be coming up this spring. It’s kind of a miracle it worked out actually, and I am pretty excited. I’ve been in this city 3.5 years and in the last year or so (and especially in the last 8 months, oddly enough) I have finally started making progress in restarting my artistic career here (in a different culture, and a non-native language). Life is strange and complicated with the timing of how things happen sometimes…

    And I found Lisa’s wedding post to be really inspiring.

    • Violet

      Life IS strange! I admire so much how you’re finding ways to create opportunities for yourself. More adventures for Jenny!

      • http://cuvikingadventures.blogspot.ca/ Jenny/Adventures Along the Way

        Aw, thanks, Violet. :)

  • Lian

    Report from the academic-ship-abandoning: I seem to potentially maybe have a job offer! Well, that’s understating it: they’re checking references and background with the intent of giving me a job offer. I am SO excited, it’s for a job I’m very enthusiastic about. And at the same time I have two interviews in the next two weeks for other jobs! I guess feeling terrible and hopeless about the job search does lead to good things? Depending on how fast the first company is I may just cancel the other ones. Cancel job interviews! Ha!
    OK enough gloating :D

    In other news: my fiance finally managed to break through the concrete wall I had build in my mind around some projects that I need to do to graduate, and now I’m working on them (well… in between visits to APW). This is good because previously I just pretended they did not exist. Not a sustainable tactic…

    • Winny the Elephant

      My fiancé steers my ship back into place too…it’s nice to have someone who helps with that isn’t it?

    • http://innercupcake.blogspot.com innercupcake

      Congratulations! I’m pretty sure graduate school encourages a mindset of feeling terrible and hopeless and its so great that you’ve found something (and have other options!) As someone who’s trying to find a job post-PhD and hasn’t been getting bites from the people who’s labs I was hoping to do short term research in, can I ask what kind of jobs you are interviewing for/applying for? I’m willing to do things other than research….but I’m not sure what I’m even qualified for other than being a lab rat.

      • Lian

        Sorry to hear you’re not having luck with post doc positions! I’m applying for positions that require a lot of data analysis – I’m ending up with a master in Statistics. My fiance has a position post-PhD in an industry that hires a lot of people in his field. I suggest looking for data focused positions I guess… Good luck!

  • Caitlin_DD

    So, we have decided rather suddenly to move our wedding date to much sooner! I am excited but, wow, the difference between idle planning and serious planning is a little startling. Like, getting stressed out about things I was pretty sure I didn’t care about…

  • Winny the Elephant

    So I feel like I’m kind of outgrowing my friends. I’ve been friends with the same group since high school. We all went to different universities but stayed in touch and would get together on breaks (I stayed in our hometown for university). Now they’ve been back for the past year after having graduated but I’m still in school doing post-grad. While I’ve always been a homebody I find that increasingly I don’t want to hang out with them- they always want to go to bars and clubs or have house parties. 90% of what they do revolves around drinking and I don’t really enjoy drinking, particularly not binge drinking. I feel bad that I keep saying no when they invite me to stuff but I just have 0 interest in hitting a bar every weekend. Not to mention I’m super busy with school work and I am flat broke. What do I do APWers?

    • http://alifeworthwritingdown.blogspot.ca/ Jules

      That’s really tough. I’ve been fortunate enough to have my childhood friends grow with me so I don’t have real life experience but I think you have to decide how intent you are on preserving your friendship with them and what level of friendship you want to maintain. Also, using the flat broke reasoning works great for everything. Hey guys, I’d love to go out but I have zero cash…maybe next time. And then suggest a less expensive (potluck dinner, games night, something else they might be into) option for another time?

    • Lizzie C.

      I feel you–over the past year I’ve grown apart from some of my childhood friends, and while I feel badly about it and miss them, I also just don’t want to spend time with them. We’re very different now than we were as kids, but that’s part of getting older. Longtime friends are such a blessing but I’m starting to realize it’s not worth forcing a friendship.

      How would you feel about spending less time with them (being broke is a great excuse at least for the bars) but keeping them in your “holiday card circle” or the equivalent? You know, reaching out for special occasions (holidays, birthdays, anniversaries) so they know you still value their friendship. I’ve been trying it with Christmas cards and valentines (#nerdalert), and sometimes one of the friends I’m growing apart from will text me to thank me for the card, which sparks a conversation but not necessarily a visit.

    • Sarah E

      If you’re still interested in them as people, you could try to change the way you interact, like inviting them over to hang out and watch tv or bake cookies or whatever you like to do. Or, if you aren’t really interested in them as people, you can just. . .let them slide away. Rachel wrote a really good post last year about breaking up with friends, if you come to that decision.

  • Lizzie C.

    Speaking of careers: I finally passed the Foreign Service Officers Test last month and am spending my Friday night working on my essays for the next stage of the application. The hilarious part is, I’ve wanted to be a foreign service officer since I was 18, but my career veered off and now I’m in a totally different job that I could very happily keep for the next 30 years. So I’m thinking, what if I actually get INTO the Foreign Service now? My husband and I both have good jobs and have moved close to family, and here I am actively trying to throw everything up in the air. Good thing I probably won’t make it through the rest of the hiring process (it’s incredibly competitive), or I could have a real pickle of a decision to make.

    Has anyone else taken a huge chance because you never thought it would work out, and then it did?

  • Chiara M

    GUYS!! It’s a little bit late, but I have an excuse. I’m getting MARRIED TODAY!

    Yesterday we made our own bouquets from grocery store flowers (9 bouquets came in at ~$170 of flowers, plus some leftovers for the guys boutonnieres and a corsage for my granny), so I was doing that during happy hour.

    • LydiaB

      Congratulations!!!!!!!

    • Laura

      This was 12 hours ago, so I’m guessing you are already married, on the way to married or partying away. Congrats!

  • http://cafeaubride.blogspot.com/ Catherine

    So I know it’s not happy hour anymore but… I just need to vent for my own peace of mind. My mother is being SO frustrating. So in three months (June 7) my partner and I are getting married. This has been a rocky, long, hurtful road with my mother since I’m from the South and marrying a woman. Shit hit the fan majorly over Christmas, but it was the straw needed to break the camel’s back, and she’s been in therapy every week since then. We just now started talking again. My fiance and I live in LA and my family is in NC (where I’m from) and we are getting married in Boulder, CO. So it’s a “destination” wedding for everyone involved. I’m only inviting one person from my mom’s side of the family because the rest are conservative Baptists and it would cause too much family drama. My dad would like to invite everyone from his family (about 19 invitations) because he feels its polite to invite all instead of just some. I’m so happy to get to invite my whole family. It makes me feel really good and I really want to get closer to that side of the family and know them as an adult. It also makes me happy that my dad is totally comfortable with calling the ones that don’t know (even the really old ones) and telling them I’m marrying a woman. My mom was at first saying that they probably couldn’t handle it and that we should just sent “announcements” after the fact to them. and that next time J and I were in NC we could meet them all….Well my dad said “if they’re going to find out a month later, what’s a months difference? ” saying that her reasoning doesn’t make sense. So then my mom calls me and is “putting it out there” that maybe instead of inviting them to the wedding,that in August, J and I could go to NC and my mom could throw a party/nice reception with all the family there and invite J’s (divorced) parents and have it as a big “welcoming J to the family” thing….well first of all, isn’t that what a WEDDING is?? What both of our families are spending thousands of dollars on? My mom is saying that our family doesn’t travel like J’s family and bascially saying that inviting them is an IMPOSITION (ughhhh) and I’m saying um, these people are adults! if they cannot or don’t want to come, they won’t ! I’m not telling anyone to travel. It’s not about that. It’s a thoughtful gesture. Saying ” I love you, I care about you, and would love to share this moment in my life with you”. And I sure as hell am not having a wedding and not inviting any family. My mom is trying to make this about the traveling thing, which makes no sense because people decline wedding invites all the freaking time (no big deal!)- but really I’m sure it has to do with the whole gay thing too….I’ve told her that of course it would be nice if next time J and I went to NC we had a get together with the family that didn’t make it to the wedding – but not *in place* of inviting them to the wedding. She’s talking about sending “nice invitations” to the thing she’ll throw in august etc…and like wtf?! I just don’t see what the issue is in sending invitations. It doesn’t throw a fucking wrench in anyone’s life, right?? Like, what?? She keeps sending me all this stuff about it and I’m like “what’s the issue here? what’s the problem?” i just want to invite my family! I’m not expecting a lot to be able to come because its out of state, but thats not the point!

    Okay, if you actually read that, I buy you a virtual drink now. Phew.

    • Lisa

      I’d like an Aviation, please. ;)

      Your mom is being unreasonable. You should invite whomever you like to the wedding, and they can choose if they can/want to travel that far. I think the family reunion thing sounds like a nice idea, but it should NOT come at the cost of an invitation to the actual thing.

    • Contentezza

      Is it possible your mom is embarrassed? Like, your dad’s extended family will be there supporting you, but her side will not. Even if it is her relatives’ choice to not support/be comfortable with your relationship, she might still feel the sting of shame that “her” side falls way behind in the guest count.
      Just a thought, and lots of luck!

    • Stella

      Can you do both? I agree with you that it seems nice to have something in-state for people who can’t make it but its hard to see why that should come at the expense of inviting them to the wedding unless that’s prohibitively expensive…? I wonder if there’s something else going on here, like Contentezza says, maybe she’s worried about having too few on her “side” or maybe does your mum want the opportunity to ask people to some specific kind of reception? I can imagine, for example, if I’d gone ahead and had a very laid back outdoor sort of wedding my in laws might have felt a bit like they wanted to do something with canapés and champagne for their friends after because in their heads that’s what’s appropriate for a wedding…

      • http://cafeaubride.blogspot.com/ Catherine

        Wow, you girls are awesome-and yes I would like to do both, but it’s just the way she’s pushing it…I already told her that of course it would be nice if next time we were in NC for us to have something like that…it’s just I’m not doing that *in place* of inviting family to the actual wedding ,you know? and that’s what she is saying. and the other thing is, J and I can’t know when we can schedule going back to NC right now…it’s a lot of think about financially when we are planning a wedding and honeymoon right now…

    • AG

      Late here, but I just wanted to agree with everyone suggesting doing both. Any chance you could get your dad involved in convincing your mom on this? Also, it sounds a little bit like she wants to do this party on her “turf” – she my honestly be embarrassed about her side of the family, especially if she’s comparing them to J’s family that travels more (even the idea of travel brings to mind a certain amount of education, money, and more inclusive worldview). I obviously don’t know your relationship with your mother, and it sounds like she really wasn’t always supportive of you when she needed to be, but she may honestly think she’s being supportive now by trying to temper your expectations of your family. Maybe the best thing you can do is try your best to convince her that you want to invite family regardless of whether or not they can/ will/ want to come, and then move forward as planned even if she doesn’t agree.

      I’ll just add here that, as someone marrying into a Southern family, there’s probably nothing you could do to totally appease them. We’re having a pretty traditional wedding by most standards, but my MIL seems to think we’re having some sort of New Age heathen dance party that will be utterly unrecognizable as a wedding. So keep doing what you’re doing, and if your Southern mother is meddling, it may just be how she’s showing she cares.

      • http://cafeaubride.blogspot.com/ Catherine

        Yes, doing both would be fine, and I told my mom that- her thing is that she’s saying to do that instead of inviting them to the wedding. whereas, i want to invite family to the wedding. if they can’t come, it’s no big deal..ha, and good luck with your new age heathen dance party :) (my mother has used the word heathen too many times…)

    • macrain

      Whenever I have felt like someone is pushing something on me that I’m not sure about, I find it tremendously helpful to tell them I’m not saying yes, or no, but that I need some time to think it over. Whenever I feel like I’m losing control of a situation, “I need to think about it” is a priceless gem, even if I’m already pretty sure what I want to do. It gives you space to breathe and think.
      I think it’s important to think about what YOU would want most in this situation. Remember you? What do you want? If you don’t want this extra party, and it sounds like you really don’t, I don’t believe you should feel obligated to say yes. You will probably end up feeing resentful if you do, and I agree with you that there will be less impetus for your family to come to Colorado like you want them to if there is a local party for them to attend.
      This is also a nice time to revisit an APW mantra- Your wedding is not an imposition. It sounds like you believe this but your mom does not. That is okay. You just keep reminding yourself what you already know and don’t let your mom talk you out of believing that.
      Big big hugs! You can do it.

      • http://cafeaubride.blogspot.com/ Catherine

        Yes, the APW mantra is something that keeps going off in my head throughout this. Because she is making it sound like it is an imposition. When all I’m doing is sending an invite….they can come or not- it’s not about that, I just want to invite *some* family to my wedding! thank you :)

  • http://innercupcake.blogspot.com innercupcake

    So this is late, but does anyone have any good recs for a solid wedding checklist? I know there are a lot online, but most of them seem like they’re selling something and don’t super appeal to me. We’re starting to up the wedding planning game and get into the details, so I’d like to have something to make sure I’m not forgetting things and to give my fiance something visual and comprehensive. It’s too bad APW doesn’t have one, I love the planning spreadsheets :/

    • Laura

      My second favorite, Offbeat bride has a great one!

    • TeaforTwo

      Ha…I used (briefly) the one on The Knot, because it was the one I knew about, I guess. I will say about it that,
      a) I got a Protestant thrill about being able to delete (not check off, just remove entirely) almost half of the items, while SQUEALING about how practical I am, but
      b) it caused a fight in which I got mad at my fiance for refusing to decide on a wedding colour scheme, which ended with him saying, “how about this…from now on you only read that practical wedding blog, if you have to read blogs at all. I don’t think that practical wedding woman would be chasing you about colour schemes.”

    • emilyg25

      I used the Knot one, but started by deleted 2/3 of the items. Made me feel like I got a lot done that day! :)

    • Kirstin

      Late reply – but I took the one off of The Knot and put it into a Google spreadsheet and deleted my account on The Knot. Google actually has a whole wedding suite of stuff that we are using: http://www.google.com/weddings/

  • Kayjayoh

    This seems worth sharing:
    Why Are America’s Postpartum Practices So Rough on New Mothers?
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/witw/articles/2013/08/15/america-s-postpartum-practices.html

    “Put the mask on yourself first? In the States, a woman is looked after, by herself and by others, only so long as her body is a receptacle for the baby. Attention then transfers to the needs of the infant. To ask for respite is to betray not only weakness and helplessness, but selfishness.”

  • http://www.smittenchickens.com/ Sarah Hoppes

    Lucy, I love your blog! We have many adoption stories, but all for our cats. One day, when we no longer live on the 7th floor in a 1.5 bedroom, we’d love to bring home snuggly shelter pup. Until then, I’m just going to oggle all the cuteness from my desk.

  • Amanda

    I need some advice from the ever-insightful APW community….my FMIL called me, seemingly out of the blue, this week to tell me that all the women in my FH’s extended family have worn her mother’s pearls when they have gotten married and her sisters were starting to ask her if I was going to and when did I want to come pick them up. Given that this is the first time both my FH and I have heard of said pearls and we’re 3 months out from the wedding after being engaged for a year, you can imagine this took me a bit by surprise.

    I was not/am not planning to wear a necklace…my dress is fairly simple except that it has sort of a statement neckline. The neckline of the dress is the cool part and because of that and because I am not a necklace wear-er in general, I was not planning to wear any necklace. I was planning to wear a very fun sparkly bracelet and earrings to add some glamour to the whole ensemble but pearls in any form were really not on my radar.

    If I had been anticipating this call, I would have been ready to share this information with my FMIL but because I wasn’t expecting it, I stammered something about wanting to see it and figure out how to wear it. So, now I’m stuck. I am very honored that they want to include me in their traditions (you guuuuys, they have so.many.traditions.) but I really, really, really do not want to wear a necklace on my wedding day….What do I do!?!?!?

    • emilyg25

      Can you wrap it around your wrist like a bracelet, or wrap it around your bouquet? It’s also fine to say, “Thank you so much for the offer. It really means a lot to me that you want to include me in this tradition. But unfortunately, with three months till the wedding, I’ve already picked out my outfit and accessories. I hope you understand!”

      • http://batman-news.com mere…

        I was in a similar situation with family jewelry expectations . My grandma passed away a few months before my wedding and when my aunt took me aside to give me some of my grandmother’s jewelry she made the comment “I know Mammaw would LOVE for you to wear these earrings on your wedding day.” Oof…
        The earrings, while gorgeous, were not my taste and didn’t quite line up with what I had planned for the day. Instead I pinned them to my bouquet and asked my photographer to take a picture of the flowers, highlighting the earrings. I also made a special point of excitedly showing my aunt my bouquet with the earrings. It helped my aunt (who I knew was emotionally attached to the idea) see that I had honored my grandmother and by taking a few extra steps like the photo I was able to really include the earrings without having to wear them.
        So I would suggest trying to think of a way to include the pearls without having to actually wear them as a necklace, like other commenters suggested! Or maybe even wear them to the rehearsal dinner the day before instead (if you’re having one)?

    • Caitlin_DD

      I second the bracelet recommendation. Or maybe you could somehow add them to an up-do?