APW Happy Hour


Harry Potter Harry Potter Harry Potter. There, I think it's out of my system

by Stephanie Kaloi, Content Manager

Hey APW,

After spending months ignoring the fact that Harry Potter and the Cursed Child was coming out, I ended up ordering a copy last minute, going to two Harry Potter parties in a day, and reading the script in two hours before coming away from it all with an empty feeling inside. Am I happy to have more Harry Potter in the world? Eh, sure. Would I have preferred it if Queen JK Rowling had graced us with another book?

When-He-Gives-Some-Champion-Level-Side-Eye

Obviously.

Besides that, my kid is back in school! But we’re (secular) homeschoolers, so that just means… we’re doing what we usually do, but with more structure.

What’s up with you guys this week?

XO,

Stephanie

Editor’s note: Budget weddings wanted! 
While we love weddings of all price points, we’re looking super budget weddings to feature! If you (or someone you know) got married for under $5K, we want you to tell us how you did it and Submit this form. The more details, anecdotes, and transparency on how you kept your costs down, the better! (PS. Don’t worry if you don’t have a million photos, we understand one of the costs nixed might have been a full day of coverage!)

link roundup

POTUS turned fifty-five this week and FLOTUS was the sweetest about it.

Speaking of politics, Hillz is still slaying on Twitter.

Also, Joe Biden made Obama a friendship bracelet! BFF LYLAS.

Why aren’t dudes into funny women? (And do we care?)

These nine Muslim women are shattering stereotypes.

Stephanie Kaloi

Stephanie is a photographer, writer, and Ravenclaw living in California with her family. She is super into reading, road trips, and adopting animals on a whim. Forewarning: all correspondence will probably include a lot of punctuation and emoji (!!! 😊 🎉 🎉).

Staff Picks

[Read comment policy before commenting]

  • raccooncity

    My thesis was approved! I’m gonna be a Master, y’all!!!!!!!

    • CMT

      Whooo! Congrats Master Racooncity!

    • louise danger

      woop woop! whatcha masterin’? :D

      • raccooncity

        Social Work

    • Totch

      Congrats!!!! Go celebrate with friends and faculty and whoever, but maybe also hug any university support staff that helped you get there!

    • Lisa

      Congratulations!!

  • emilyg25

    My BFF got engaaaaaaaged last night. Today I rescheduled my toddler’s nap and met her at Perkins (chain diner) for lunch with a bottle of sparkling wine. If you’ve never day-drank in a Perkins parking lot, you aren’t living your best life.

    • Cassidy

      Does Perkins still have those huge cinnamon rolls that they will throw on the grill for you and cover with melted butter? Oh man, I miss those…

      • emilyg25

        Yes! When we were leaving, the manager offered the toddler one.

      • Lisa

        I wish I’d known about this as a kid! My big treat was getting an eclair from the pastry case.

        • emilyg25

          I usually get the pie.

  • CMT

    Hi, could somebody please tell me what I should be when I grow up? I’m pretty miserable in my current job because there’s never enough work to do and I’m always bored. I’ve been applying for the type of job that I thought I really, really wanted when I was in grad school and I am just not excited about it. I’m pretty sure I’d be bored in those jobs, too. So I impulsively registered for the LSAT even though I KNOW that law school is a terrible idea. But from the outside, it does seem like a better career path for me. [But also, I get the urge to go back to school every fall, so who knows where this particular flight of fancy will go. Quite possibly nowhere.]

    • raccooncity

      What parts of being a lawyer appeal to you?

    • louise danger

      i’m in this boat, too :( so no helpful advice, just a #solidarityhighfive

    • Amy March

      What no stop right now! Law school is a fantastic idea if you have a burning desire to be a lawyer. If you do not, it is a terrible terrible waste of money. If your current job is boring, the solution is finding a new job. I know you’ve been trying, I know it is hard. But trust that $200,000 is debt will make nothing about the job search easier.

      • CMT

        Oh, I know. I was being a bit flippant in my comment, but I would not actually go to law school without A LOT of serious thinking first. I am nowhere near making a decision, but being a lawyer is appealing to me. I don’t know if it’s quite appealing enough to change my whole life around, though.

        • Amy March

          Why is it appealing? I personally love it, I’m not down on the profession at all, but I do think jumping into it from a situation that isn’t great is really risky, and the friends I made at law school who were fleeing a situation are still not happy with what they are doing.

          • CMT

            I just wrote a whole long comment and the internet ate it, ugh. But I was basically going to say that my dad is an attorney with his own practice and has for my whole life. So I have some sense of what the legal profession is like, even though I know just being around it is a whole different ball game from actually doing it. Plus I’d be guaranteed a job afterwards. But I really appreciate everybody’s comments here. I recognize that a lot of what I’m feeling right now is due to my current job, so I’m trying to dig through all those feelings and find out if I do have some genuine desire to practice law, and if so, if that desire is strong enough to make it worth it.

        • Cleo

          Seconding EVERYTHING Amy March is saying – I was lucky enough to get out of law school with minimal debt, thanks to a massive scholarship, otherwise, I would be one of many miserable lawyers who are working off their indentured servitude/student loans. I know writers, photographers, and interior designers who made the choice to go to law school because they were fleeing a situation/looking for easy money and are pretty miserable now. One of my friends even went back to his job before law school – as a high school English teacher – after a couple years as a lawyer in a big firm. He’s much happier now. On the flip side, his wife is a rock star attorney who loves her job and made the right choice in going to law school (so not saying legal profession is a bastion of misery).

          One of the wisest pieces of advice I ever heard and never took is to work as a paralegal or secretary/assistant for a year at a law firm before going to law school. If you still are excited about going to law school after seeing the ins and outs of the job, then that’s the right decision.

          Good luck!

          • Kalë

            If the last part – dipping your toes in as a legal assistant – is something that interests you, I know the Public Defender’s Office in your location is looking for a paralegal, @CMT

        • emmers

          Just enter eyes wide open. My brother, and also my sister-in-law are lawyers. My bro got a government job, but it took a lotttt of hard work (low paying internships, periods of unemployment & living at our aunt’s house, endless networking, keeping connections up with professors during & after graduation). I think it took him maybe 2 years post graduation to get a job that he’ll be able to be at longterm, and he had other friends who were still not there, still doing things like doing paid research for former professors (not sure how they’re surviving, since some of them have kids!). My sis-in-law doesn’t like being a lawyer, and can’t quite figure out how to monetize her degree. Her first lawyer job had no benefits and I think she made ~$40K. She’s now looking at public defender jobs, and we’re worried for her.

        • NolaJael

          Speaking as someone who truly and deeply regrets having gone to law school (absolute worst financial decision of my life) and is *right now* working a really BORING government job to pay it off, here’s my three cents.

          Do NOT go to law school for any of the following reasons: a) you want to help people (you’ll be too in debt to take those bleeding-heart save-the-world run-a-nonprofit jobs), b) you’re smart (everyone in law school is smart, not everyone gets good jobs afterward), c) it’s a “flexible” degree (it’s not, it only prepares you to be a lawyer and – surprise! – people don’t want to hire lawyers to do non-lawyer jobs: you’re perceived as overqualified and arrogant).

          2. For normal people (as in, you don’t have a rich uncle with a firm who’s already promised you a job), you should not go to law school unless you know for certain one of two things: where you want to live or exactly what kind of law you want to practice. Go to law school in or near the city you want to practice in long term, you’ll need that networking later. If you know what kind of law you want to practice, then immediately get involved in that – go to meet & greets, intern, get a part time job in the field, etc. Exactly no one (who is in a position to hire) cares if you are “interested” in a field or took a class or two in it – you have to have actual real world experience or your resume goes in the circular file.

          3. The only things that matter in law school are grades and networking. Everything else is a distraction. As a good little liberal arts major I thought I should take intellectually challenging classes even if my grades might suffer and help with fundraisers for homeless pets and all the other social stuff that happens around law school. Nope. In hindsight I realize I was spending way too much future money to diddle around for activities that would never pay off, while accruing debt that will hinder other life goals for decades to come.

    • Dolly

      Can you say what the appealing parts are of both “job path you thought you wanted” and “lawyering”? Is there a way to lay them both out together and think of a path that combines them?

    • Rebekah Jane

      Two things.
      One: I’m still waiting for my original career choice (princess) to pan out. So far, haven’t been given my own country or a fancy tiara.
      Two: The advice I was given growing up (by my career-coach of a father) is to figure out what you love to do and then figure out how to get paid a reasonable salary for it. This is, of course, advice to a privileged white female from a middle class family, so hold onto your salt, folks.

      But I was lucky – I figured out at 14 that I loved writing and realized at 22 that a girl can’t magically publish a novel and be rich (looking at you, JK, for making me believe that dream). So, I tried a lot of different writing environments and jobs and now I’m really happy with a varied, interesting portfolio. So, take a minute and ask yourself – what are you good at? What makes you happy? Is there something that answers both of those questions? How can you find a job that gives you that?

      If that’s being a lawyer, then rock on. But, don’t go to law school just because you’re bored. The job market for lawyers only slightly improved recently and there are still more graduates than jobs in the legal field.

      • Kat

        My dad was always very supportive, “do what you love!” and all that, which of course I appreciate, but it kind of gave me an unattainable ideal of what Life After College should be like, and now I’m underpaid in a job I hate, looking desperately for something new, and my mom’s like “hmmm maybe your father was a little overenthusiastic.”

        What I’ve realized is that I don’t think I’ll be fulfilled by my job until I’m my own boss, which isn’t really financially attainable at the moment (see: student loans)
        BUT I can search for a job that a) pays me enough to not live paycheck to paycheck, b) doesn’t make me work every single weekend (I miss BRUNCH!), c) allows for some traveling, my true passion, and d) has good management/co-workers and the opportunity to learn new skills.

        (Consequentially, if anyone is hiring in the greater Atlanta area, lmk! lol)

        • Eenie

          Are we the same person? I’ve had trouble finding openings south of Atlanta. North side is where it’s at (but a 1.5 hour commute for me).

          • Kat

            I’m on the North side (Sandy Springs) and there’s a lot of “entry level” stuff but then “wait you’re under-qualified” and it makes me want to scream. What kind of work are you looking for?

          • Eenie

            Civil engineering work or manufacturing. I had an interview in Peachtree City this week which isn’t a horrible commute and I feel hopeful. Indeed just kept putting jobs in Marietta and Alpharetta on my daily email which was very frustrating. I also get to play the game of what part of “Atlanta” is this job in? 9/10 it was north side. Sigh.

          • Kat

            Fingers crossed for you!!! It’s aggravating, for sure.

          • Eenie

            I’ve been commiserating with one of my husband’s coworker’s spouses who was unemployed for 7 months while job searching. That and the parallel to the online dating game is pretty spot on (not many people OTP).

        • Rebekah Jane

          A) Ok women, I’m IN the greater Atlanta area, WHAT’S UP. What’s your field and how can I help?
          B) Yeeeeaaaah, I definitely had the after-college-shock-time where I realized that I couldn’t actually write the great American novel AND afford my expensive conditioner. Hence, I’m now a copywriter in a big corporation because #benefits

          • Kat

            Soooooo I went to school for Retail Merchandising and Product Development, but I ended up kind of drifting more into the branding side of things. Graphic design/writing/social media & ecommerce, etc.

            For real I just want to be able to support my Target/Lush habit. Haha

            ALSO we should all get coffee sometime because anyone who reads APW is my kind of person.

          • Eenie

            I’m totally down for coffee, or we could try out that new coney island rooftop thing at ponce city market…

          • Rebekah Jane

            I’m a copywriter who has worked as a social media manager, my fiance’s in ecommerce and you and I are officially getting coffee.

          • Kat

            Like 100000% down for this.

          • Rebekah Jane

            …..someone smarter than me tell me how to get in contact with this awesome woman without having to post my contact information on the Internets.

          • Michela

            Share a Twitter/Instagram handle and DM?

          • Rebekah Jane

            This is why I love APW!

            I’m @rustyfawcet on both

          • Kat

            @katthevampirebat on Insta :]

    • emilyg25

      See if there are any changes you can make to make your current job more tolerable. This could even be getting a really cool outside hobby and focusing on working to live.

      Talk to friends about what they do. Consider asking people for informational interviews. See if there’s any career coaching available, either through your employer or a community org like a local community college or your college’s career office.

      Identify your strengths and passions to try to find work that aligns with that.

      I hear you on the temptation to make drastic changes. I almost joined the Air Force during my last major career crisis! And I’m a 5’2″ pacifist with chronic pain/fatigue.

      • Michela

        Seconding all of this. I mentioned upthread that I pushed for some process improvements at work to make some of my work less painful (not because the work is now more interesting but because now it takes up less of my time). I also decided to start doing freelance interior design in my free time since it’s my true passion. Identify what you really enjoy and see if there’s a way to add it to your schedule. Now that I’m working on design projects for other people, I have something to look forward to when I get home, which makes my dull workday much more manageable. Additional bonus- if I ever have the guts to apply for design jobs, I’ll have a bit of experience to offer a potential employer.

        Good luck!

    • Eenie

      To counter @rebekah_jane:disqus’s comment:
      I’ve been unhappy and bored in every job I’ve had, so now I’ve switched to looking for jobs with: a good boss, nice coworkers, benefits, short commute, good pay, etc. It’s a means to an end for me. I don’t think I’ll ever be fulfilled by my career, so I look for one that allows me to live my life outside of work how I want.

      • Eenie

        Clearly other people are fulfilled by their careers, so don’t let this discourage you if it’s not what you needed to hear. It’s just not commonly talked about, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it. My goal right now is to find a place of employment that will give me paid maternity leave. #selfishinthebestway

      • Keeks

        I can’t like this enough. Fun, kind people; an easy commute (I can walk to work!!!!); and work doesn’t follow me home. #blessed

        • Eenie

          I’ve discovered that the most important factor in my happiness at work is my coworkers. My husband is the same way.

          • Keeks

            Totally. Although, my awesome coworkers at my last job were what was holding me back from finding a new one so it can always backfire!

      • Rebekah Jane

        Believe me, the “work to live” philosophy is one I support too! I added a bit of it into my most recent job search and, rather than apply for jobs where I could create without limits, I chose to work in a structured corporate environment because rocking benefits + short commute + nice coworkers = BEST EVER.

      • Lisa

        This is what I did when I switched from my awful non-profit to my current desk job. I don’t love it, but my co-workers aren’t awful, back-stabby people, the work doesn’t require me to be at the office extra hours, my commute is a 4 mile roundtrip on foot or bike, and I make 25% more. This is not a forever job, and I still hold out hope that I’ll be able to find something that pays significantly more and is interesting. However, it’s fine for now.

    • Keeks

      Keep applying and looking for those jobs you thought (think) you’ll really, really want! I was SOOO BORED at my old job because I never had enough work to do and my manager wasn’t interested in developing my capabilities. My new job is in the same field, but I’m happier than I have been in years even though I am drowning in work. I feel more creatively inspired (despite working in a technical role), way more social, and I even motivated to lose some weight. My husband just changed jobs and feels the same.

      Try a little change of scenery before leaving it all behind – new job, similar job in a different industry, pivoting off a skill you already have into a new career, freelancing maybe?

    • Yet another Meg

      I am just going to throw this out there (realizing that I’m only a stranger on the Internet ) but a law degree is in fact useful even if you aren’t a practicing lawyer. And I say this as someone who tried practice from three years and was miserable. I love my current job and the degree is helpful , and is going to help me advance at my current company. That being said it is expensive and HARD.

      • Cleo

        Curious what you do because I had the opposite experience.

        I say this as someone with a J.D. who found that a law degree was a hindrance to my getting a job in another profession (overqualified, why can’t you get a law job, don’t you want to be a lawyer). And while being able to read contracts and draft some documents if the Business Affairs division is slammed is useful in my current corporate environment, it’s never given me a leg up.

        Except, I look young for my age, so if I casually mention my J.D. in a meeting, I suddenly get a LOT more respect from the older white males who make up 90% of the people I interact with on a daily basis. But that is not worth 3 years of rigor, at least to me.

    • JC

      I want to be an astronaut when I grow up. Feel free to join me.

      • CMT

        Yes, please!

      • Grace

        Did you know there’s a height requirement!?!? I’m too short by half an inch! I usually round up, but I think NASA would notice.

        • JC

          I did NOT know this! I am a bit outraged and also a bit excited. I think this gives me the perfect excuse:
          “JC, why do you work for a software company in a field that no one has ever heard of?”
          “Well my first choice was astronaut, but I’m just a bit too short.”

    • Anna

      I just read this article five minutes ago. I thought it had an interesting take on the topic. https://medium.com/personal-growth/youre-not-meant-to-do-what-you-love-you-re-meant-to-do-what-you-re-good-at-4e8e6b8e929d#.fpltxs469

      • CMT

        Oh I read this! I think it came up in one of my google searches for “What should I do with my life?” This part — “There is only finding a job that suits you enough that the work doesn’t feel excruciating.” is what I’m working on.

    • Kate

      Would you be interested in moving to California asap and becoming a 3rd grade teacher? It will certainly not be boring and you’ll do a lot of serious good in an underprivileged community. While a teaching credential would be ideal, a little birdie told me they’d be happy to work with someone to get them their credential AS they teach so long as they have a bachelor’s degree. I am not at all joking about this.
      https://www.edjoin.org/Home/JobPosting/832041

  • Kalë

    Can’t contain my excitement but don’t want to tell people IRL until it actually happens… my boyfriend is looking at rings!!!!!!

    • Not Sarah

      Yay!!!

    • Violet

      Well, well, well, isn’t THIS a nice development from just a few weeks ago!! Exciting!

      • Kalë

        I KNOW RIGHT! I’m so, so glad I followed the advice I got here and just, uh, talked to him instead of internally freaking out and over-analyzing everything he said. Turns out, once we started talking about timing, we were on the same page. Communication actually works, who would have guessed ;)

        • Violet

          Squee!

        • emmers

          I’m so happy for you. That’s a such a huge shift, and such a wonderful feeling.

        • Not Sarah

          Yay I was wondering how your discussions had gone! Thank you for updating us and I’m so glad communication worked out :)

    • Mari

      *Best* GIF!

      (So exciting!)

  • wma204

    I just finished my medical residency in June and started my big girl job a few days ago. It’s always terrifying for such big life transitions like that, especially suddenly becoming the boss. But it went great! And I’m really glad I don’t have to have a first day again.

    • raccooncity

      Congrats! I am currently working at a hospital and i was on an elevator with an anaesthetist resident today and he got off the elevator at the wrong floor, realized what had happened and was like “help me!”, but it was too late.

      Oh, residents. Congrats on upgrading to “i know what floor to get off at”.

      • wma204

        Oh I remember that feeling well. lol.

    • Totch

      Congrats!

    • Congrats! That is such an awesome achievement.

    • JezzicaJane

      Congratulations!!! What an immense achievement! My boyfriend also just got a new partner in his group and I can’t wait to meet her (she will be the only girl in the boy’s club). We’re both looking forward to decreased call and another attending to shoulder the load.

  • Dolly

    How do dinnertime events flow at a wedding? e.g. introducing people who will make toasts, say a few words, etc? I’ve been to plenty of weddings but literally cannot remember how this happened at a single one. I want to know whether I should engage someone to keep people on track…An MC seems like overkill at a c. 40-person dinner party wedding that is pretty casual and untraditional. Do I need one? If we don’t have one, how will people know when to say their few words?
    I don’t know why I have such a massive block around remembering the ways this tends to go…

    • emilyg25

      Yes, you should ask an organized close friend or family member to serve as MC and keep folks on schedule.

      • Dolly

        Thank you! This seems so obvious now…

      • Violet

        We asked my cousin- it worked great!

    • Eenie

      We had our last toaster act as the MC. He does radio and absolutely killed it.

      • Dolly

        What a good idea! I may borrow that – thank you!

        • Eenie

          No problem! It looks like there’s quite a few sample timelines for the order of things too if you do a quick google search. We just gave him a list of the names in the right order and how to pronounce.

    • sofar

      Our DJ did it for us. Not sure if all DJs do, but ours was a good friend. I think having *someone* to get the ball rolling is important. We were roaming around greeting our guests towards the end of dinner, and, if our coordinator hadn’t tapped me on the shoulder and said, “Um, we should start toasts,” I’d have just mingled on til midnight.

      Here’s roughly how we did it:

      When the last table sat down with their food from the buffet, our DJ asked everyone to take seats and introduced the first toaster (my dad). Then he introduced each subsequent toaster. We’d given him the names and the order ahead of time. We had also told all our toasters that they needed to stay in their seats after they finished their meals so they’d be ready to get up and give their toasts.

      I think starting the toasts while about half the guests were still eating was a good idea, because everyone was still in their seats for the most part. If dinner is long over by the time you start toasts, people will be roaming all over the place. Granted, our wedding was way bigger than yours, and this might not be a big deal with 40 people.

      • Dolly

        Yes! Thank you – super-helpful. I’m thinking starting about halfway through dinner will be perfect…or maybe at the interval between mains and cheese or dessert. There won’t be space to roam in this intimate restaurant space, but I think it’s important to keep things moving…for sure.

        • Totch

          One other thing: you and your new spouse might want a minute to make a speech of your own or say thank you. I think things like that often don’t get put on programs because you kinda want them to feel extemporaneous (and because sometimes they really are).

          If you think you may want to speak, find a time for it in your schedule. If not, you’ll end up waiting til the spirit moves you (aka 4 glasses of wine in, when your cousin has just come over to tell you they’ve gotta head out for an early flight, and you realize the night is ending and you haven’t said a proper thank you to x,y,z).

          • Eenie

            Or just completely forgetting to do it at all. *raises hand*

          • MC

            We did our speech/thank-yous right after everyone else toasted us and then segued it into a dessert announcement – worked great timing-wise!

          • Dolly

            I was JUST thinking about this today, actually…whether/how to speak. I think it’s important that we do, especially since almost EVERY person will be traveling from another city. This is a good tip to schedule it – I don’t know that I would have, but these are really sensible reasons to do that…

            I’m super-afraid of the dinner speaking, by the way. Way more terrified than the ceremony. Even though the ceremony is going to be very emotional, it’s going to feel more structured. Speaking at dinner feels like guaranteed crying-fest. Maybe best to do it first, not last? Less wine in the system = fewer tears?

          • MC

            I wrote out literally word-for-word what I was going to say and read from it, which calmed my nerves a bit. If I had just said waht was in my mind at that time it would have been a scattered mess and I would have forgotten everything I wanted to say. YMMV but that helped me!

    • Kat

      I’ve done some day-of-coordinating for friends who were getting married and having smallish, intimate receptions with no DJ to do announcements. Mostly I just got everyone down the aisle in order, and made sure the things the couple wanted to happen at the reception actually happened, i.e toasts, first dance, cake cutting, sparkler exit. If you have a friend who’s organized and wanting to pitch in in some way, ask them to help out. I still got to enjoy the wedding and it’s nice to be able to take some of the stress off the bride or the MOB/MOH, who those responsibilities usually fall on if there’s no planner.

      • Dolly

        Definitely It’s looking like it’s going to be an organized friend like you! Thanks. :-)

    • reller

      We had a 50 person family style dinner at our wedding. We chose to space the speeches out between courses and it worked really well. A DJ or Day of Coordinator (who could be an organized friend/ family member) should be able to manage the task. Just make sure to discuss schedule and plan in advance and to let the speakers know what to expect.

      • Dolly

        Thank you! This is basically what we’re having – a 40-45-person family-style dinner party. So this is great to hear. There won’t be a DJ but I’m already loving the idea of getting one of the toastmakers who is a hilarious person and loves public speaking to do day-of coordination and stuff…especially because she doesn’t really drink…so it won’t be like she has to sacrifice fun in order to be together enough to keep everyone on track…

        • reller

          Yay! It was really nice for everyone to be able to nibble during speeches instead of feeling like a captive audience. If you’re going to be introduced when you enter the reception, have a first dance, or do a cake cutting, I would definitely tap that friend to help in those areas too :).

    • Totch

      We’re having a 30 person wedding that’s family only and pretty casual like yours. Our reception is just a dinner so we’re letting the menu to do a lot of the work. We’re peppering some speeches and things in during dinner, but doesn’t seem worth an emcee or DJ or even a separate program (if needed we’ll announce things ourselves). So the menu text is basically:

      Grace
      Totch’s dad

      Course 1
      Course 2
      Course 3

      Tea ceremony
      Little explanation of tea ceremony

      Courses 4-6

      Toast
      Totch’s brother
      Fiance’s sister

      Courses 7-10

      Cake cutting

      Courses 11-12

      For a reception that’s just 3 tables of people eating dinner, we feel like that’s enough? I hope it is?

      • Amy March

        Wait I think we all need more details on your 12!!!!!! course menu.

        • Totch

          We’re having a traditional Chinese wedding banquet, which are usually around 9-12 courses. 2-3 appetizers, a soup, 2-3 mains, a giant plate of noodles and a giant plate of fried rice, 2 desserts (one of which no one ever eats). Plus cake. I attached a sample menu, pretty similar to ours.

          • lamarsh

            Oh wow, that sounds amazing!

          • Lisa

            That sounds delicious!

          • Dolly

            Wow!! So good!!!

          • NolaJael

            !!!! AWESOME !!!!

      • Eenie

        12 Courses! That sounds fabulous. Do you plan to use amplification? I always recommend it if you can…

        • Totch

          We can’t use amplification, but we are gonna be in a private room. We’re just gonna make sure my hard-of-hearing grandma is close to where the speeches will be, and hope for the best.

      • Dolly

        That’s super-helpful, too. Thanks so much. I like getting a sense of this from people having similar-sized weddings. I also love that there are 12 courses plus cake!! :-)

        • Totch

          Yeah, 2 of those courses are already dessert, but we’re having cake too…. Food at a Chinese wedding is serious business! I put a sample menu on Amy March’s comment below.

          • Dolly

            Oh I don’t think it’s ostentatious. This is a huge, significant party…demands significant food!

    • Alanna Cartier

      We’re having a similar sized dinner party wedding and we’ll be using a close friend as MC. Just to segue between speeches and stuff.

      • Dolly

        Okay! Good to hear! This is all shaping up to sound like I can keep it casual and still have an MCish type person…

  • MC

    I know I am late to the game with this but Husband and I finally finished watching the new season of Orange is the New Black this week and I have been DEVASTATED for days. I don’t think I have ever had that strong of an emotional reaction to a TV show. Oof.

    • idkmybffjill

      I finished it about a month ago and still got teary reading this comment.

    • Kalë

      Begging for no spoilers!!! We are also behind in our TV this summer and have yet to even start it!

      • MC

        I was really impressed that I didn’t manage to stumble upon any spoilers on the internet but that also meant I was caught super off guard for all the EMOTIONS. I’ll just say prepare for heartbreak and maybe don’t watch episode 12 right before trying to go to sleep…

      • Lily

        We’ve been catching up from season 1 and just started season 4 last night! I’m so in love with the entire show right now, but I’m also prematurely mourning/terrified of what is going to happen…

    • emilyg25

      I’m so concerned about this. My husband is really sensitive and really likes that character who that thing happens to. I tried to warn him without spoiling because it seemed like a violation of our marriage to continue watching otherwise, but he wants to keep going.

    • Keeks

      The second half of the season blew me away with its emotional depth and timeliness. My husband and I were still talking about it after a week, which is pretty amazing for a show you can binge watch in a few days.

    • AP

      Oh I feel you. I hadn’t read anything about the new season before watching, so I had no idea what was coming. I was shell-shocked and immediately devoured every online critique/discussion about it that I could find.

    • Lisa

      I lost it when we saw her backstory. They did such a great job with this season.

    • CP2011

      I had to stop watching halfway through the first season for the same reason. It’s so good, and I continue to read articles about it and some episode recaps, but I just can’t handle watching it. I did fine with the book though.

      • Lisa

        The book is absolutely nothing like the show though! I finally read the book at the beginning of this year, and while certain elements do show up at times or you see the stories from the book used for certain characters, the novel is told from Piper’s first person limited POV. The TV show is sort of about Piper but mostly about everyone else. It’s much more emotional and involved with such a beautiful ensemble cast.

        • Alanna Cartier

          Good points. I’ve read the book and watched the show, and I have to say, especially after this most recent season, the show is one million times better.

    • Mari

      Ditto. I burst into tears at the end. I’ve teared up during emotional moments in movies/TV before but this was full on waterworks.

  • Anon Today for Reasons

    My husband and I made a tentative decision this week for me to go off the pill once my current prescription runs out in about 6 weeks. I have been on it for about 15 years and have loved it, and I may be back on it again someday, but the plan at the moment is for me to try out FAM with a backup bc method till I get the hang of it and while my body remembers how to ovulate and hopefully regulate, and then sometime in the first half of next year, start actually trying to get pregnant. I’m pretty freaked out. I haven’t even had a period in like six years. Not looking forward to that, but we are both hoping the nice parts of going off the pill materialize and make up for it, and we’re both getting pretty excited about spawning. So much so that we’re willing to risk the possibility of getting knocked up before we officially decide to try, in case I totally fail at recognizing my mucus or whatever (there’s A LOT of talk about mucus in this FAM thing, wow). And basically I will only be able to talk to you all about this because if anyone IRL finds out I’m going off the pill, they’re going to be unendingly nosy until the moment I announce a pregnancy and I can’t even handle the thought of that. So yay!

    • emilyg25

      Once you start really trying, you’re gonna get all up in your mucous, and then once you’re pregnant, hoo boy.

      • Anon Today for Reasons

        Yeah. Speaking of being gross with your partner, I told him he’s going to get basically all the details in real time, and to get ready.

        • emilyg25

          Oh yeah, I updated my husband like daily. If I have to track all this shit, you’re coming along with me, buddy. Good luck!

          • Anon Today for Reasons

            Thanks, as much as I have loved the pill, there’s something enticing about the whole thing, even the gross tracking, that my research-minded self likes. Like I actually look forward to a few months of it, even though my period used to be so uncomfortable. I’m looking at Diva Cups like “what even…would I maybe like this?!” because I have skipped them all for so long!

          • Nicole

            I have a Diva cup and I luurrrvvvv it! Definitely try it. There’s a small getting used to it period of time (haha…pun intended) but I’ll never go back.

          • Anon Today for Reasons

            The same company makes the P Style, which is no joke my favorite thing I have purchased in…years. I kind of want to get them for my friends, which would be weird, but OMG. I had no idea what I was missing.

          • Lisa

            I posted above, but Divas are the best. I decided to go to pads for a couple of months after I got my IUD, and I do not miss those things one bit.

          • MC

            Aaaah I have a P Style but I got it as a white elephant gift and had no idea it was from the same company! Love both that and the Diva.

          • Michela

            LOVE my Diva Cup. I’m similarly Type A/research minded and I weirdly love seeing what my body does while menstruating. Plus there’s the bonus of a decreased environmental impact (which I remind myself of when I’m feeling lazy about dealing with it).

    • raccooncity

      BE PREPARED to not have any sex when you REALLY want to. I think people who do FAM don’t mention this enough. It doesn’t happen to everyone, but often your body makes ovulation time the sexiest time of them all.

      • Violet

        PREACH. Ovulation time is the best in general (skin looks great, good energy, etc.) but it’s also when you really wanna have sex.

        • raccooncity

          Yes, peak beauteousness. Peak “look at me!!!” walking down the street.

          • Violet

            It’s basically my fave thing ever. I wish I could schedule important meetings around my cycle, ’cause I’m so on POINT when I ovulate.

      • Anon Today for Reasons

        My husband is literally making a list of the non-pregnancy-inducing ways we can have sex when that happens and he is starting to look like the hearts-for-eyes-emoji.

        • raccooncity

          Oh, I guess I forgot to mention I meant no P-in the-V kind of sex. Planning ahead is a great idea. Lots of other options, all of them exciting and awesome. But I still found it very difficult to say no to. Especially since for me my non-fertile times I am super bored and apathetic to sex altogether.

        • emmers

          I am a big fan of all kinds of sex! Yay for your husband!

          • Anon Today for Reasons

            We are too but we get lazy. He is now gleefully rifling through the toy chest.

      • Alexandra

        I mean…you can just use condoms and it’s fine. That’s what we did. The second time around. The first time we did withdrawal during ovulation times and I have the two year old to prove it.

    • Amy March

      If you don’t want to get pregnant just yet, why isn’t he using condoms? FAM involves a lot of not having sex when you’re ovulating, which a lot of women find the most appealing time to do it. If you don’t have religious objections to birth control it’s really not great.

      • Violet

        I keep saying this exact thing!! Or a latex allergy, would be the other exception.

        • raccooncity

          Non-latex condoms are slightly more expensive but are pretty great.

      • Anon Today for Reasons

        He isn’t now because I’m still on the pill. When I get off it, that will be one of our backup methods I mentioned. I’m not actually that interested in it for birth control as much as for being Type A about getting ready to start trying.

        • Amy March

          If he is using condoms when you have sex, that isn’t what I think of as a backup. Condoms work. They are a primary form of birth control. And if he is using condoms, you don’t need FAM at all. Like, what is the point? You’re really just tracking your cycle then.

          Sorry to be totally up on my soapbox but I think FAM gets an oddly great reputation online, when it’s actually a pretty pointless burden to place on yourself when there are so many other options, especially if you are in fact using those options.

          • raccooncity

            Also probably at play here is your well-documented dislike of the not-trying-not-preventing state of doing things. It’s something some people like to do, or need to mentally do in preparation to get ready for parenthood. And obviously, you’re right, NTNP is effectively ‘trying’ in 90% of cases, but it’s a thing people do and that’s ok.

          • Amy March

            Absolutely. I will always be on team this sounds pretty pointless and needlessly complicated but knock yourself out. If you’re having unprotected sex, you’re trying to get pregnant, whatever you want to pretend to yourself.

          • Anon Today for Reasons

            Yeah, I’m on team “pre-engagement is a giant pile of total bullshit,” and yet there’s endless drama about that stage here on APW, to the extent that some people believe booking a wedding venue can happen during “pre-engagement”…so I hear you. Luckily it’s not your mucus I’ll be recording so we should all be fine.

          • raccooncity

            Ha! Sounds like you should be referring to yourself as pre-conception then. Or maybe even pre-pre-conception.

          • Anon Today for Reasons

            :) and I’m sure my preconceptions about being pre-conception will be challenged when we get there.

          • emmers

            lol, I see what you did there

          • Amy March

            Agreed and I wish you much luck with it!!

          • Jess

            This is where my naivete around TTC culture comes in – I always thought of NTNP as “Well, we’re not using contraception, but I’m also not tracking my cycles to find the optimum time for conception and planning to bone whether or not I feel like it at that moment”

            Like saying, ok, I’m mostly ready for pregnancy, but I’m also not going out of my way to make it happen rightthissecond.

            Apparently it’s a whole other thing!

            Signed, someone who uses both hormonal bc and condoms because you just never know…

          • Alexandra

            Or you can underestimate the amount of time and energy it takes and get knocked up and THEN, after the baby, change over to wonderful, wonderful condoms.

      • Lor

        I just recently got off the pill, stupid question, why can you not have sex when ovulating?? When are you supposed to have sex??

        • Eenie

          If you have sex while ovulating with no birth control you can get pregnant. If you want to be pregnant, great! Anon was expressing the desire to wait a couple more months before being pregnant.

    • Lolauren

      Congrats on that big step! My advice is to be really patient with your body as it re-adjusts. It can sometimes take longer than you’d think for your body to get regulated and on a schedule again. Not as fun to think about, but as your hormones change and there is big stuff on the line (like babies!) things can get stressful. I know I got quite frustrated when we were a few months off BC and things were still all over the place. Try to be prepared that the whole process of getting off BC and then trying to conceive can be a marathon, not a sprint. (although sometimes it can be a sprint too! Which makes this such a hard thing to regulate expectation-wise.) All that said, best wishes and enjoy!

    • emmers

      When I went off my Mirena IUD, it was weird to get used to having periods again. They are just so messy! I haven’t actually done it yet, but I’ve been thinking about trying out Thinx, since other APWers have had luck with them, since I hate how my undies always get stained. Just my $0.02 about part of your question!

      • Lisa

        I’ll also plug the Diva Cup as another reusable menstrual product. I’ve used it for almost 3.5 years, and it’s amazing!

        • Mari

          Diva Cup FTW

    • Michela

      Confession: had to look up what FAM stood for.

      • Anon Today for Reasons

        Fucking Around Mucus. Just kidding…sort of…it’s like a lot about mucus, I gather :)

        • Michela

          That made my half gag, half laugh. Get yours, girl ; )

    • EllaByNight

      I didn’t use FAM to avoid pregnancy, but I did use it to help get pregnant after being on the pill for ten years. We jumped right in to trying to conceive and I ended up getting pregnant the second month I was off the pill. However, I appreciate the desire to take some time to get used to charting. It was pretty strange to spend so much time looking at cervical mucus at first and I felt like what I was seeing didn’t necessarily match any of the descriptions or pictures I had found. Ultimately the thing I found most helpful in tracking my cycle is reading many, many descriptions of what your mucus will look like at different phases of your cycle. I don’t think any one description perfectly fit what I actually experienced, but being able to combine them helped me pinpoint when I was ovulating even though it didn’t match any textbook description. Good luck!

      • Anon Today for Reasons

        Thank you, that’s pretty much what I am hoping for, a reasonable, informed transition from not ovulating for years to trying to get pregnant. I’m hoping not to be officially trying for that many cycles just because I know my own mind for disappointment, but I recognize that my body might need a few months to figure out what to do with its own hormonal cycle.

        • MommaCat

          When I was TTC the first time, I actually tracked my temp and cervical fluid for a couple months before going off the pill. It was nice to get into the habit in a lower-pressure way, because if I slept through my alarm one day my jerk-brain wouldn’t freak out so badly. I ended up tracking for about 10 months, all told. For my second pregnancy, I just kept track of my cervical fluid, and didn’t even write it down. We got preggers our first try that time, go figure. ;-)

  • LindseyM

    I picked a dress, woooo! I haven’t actually bought it yet, because I’m hoping to buy it from a woman in Australia and she has to work out the postage. I was super down on spending a lot of money on a dress at first, but I found this dress and love it (after almost a year of spaced out looking). I just decided that if it is in the realm of reasonable and I love it, then go for it. It is the Rue de Seine Eve dress: http://ruedeseine.com/product/eve-gown-2/ but without the sleeves. It is SO soft and comfortable. I have really sensitive skin, and I really just wanted to be comfortable—this dress feels like wearing silk pajamas.

    • Rebekah Jane

      LOVE IT.

    • lamarsh

      Rue de Seine has such beautiful dresses – you picked a gorgeous one!

    • Kalë

      Wow, gorgeous!

    • Alanna Cartier

      Congratulations! That’s such a lovely dress! I tried on a few rue de siene dresses, and they weren’t for me, but damn was the fabric nice!

  • Anonforthis

    I’ve been debating all week about posting, but I really need to get some advice/support.
    On Monday night, after I had a beer (and I’m a ligthweight) and had also taken my contacts out, my husband said, “I need to tell you something, and I’m really scared. Love, I’m addicted to porn.”

    I almost laughed, which I’m blaming on the beer, inability to see well, and the fact that I never suspected anything like this. We’ve talked a lot more, and it turns out that for the last 10 years or so, every month or two when he has a few really depressed days, he wastes whole chunks of time searching for and watching porn. He’s only in the last month been able to name it as an addiction, because it takes him longer to find something exciting, and he wants to stop. He’s put filters/blockers on his laptop and our router (and gave me the passwords), and we’ve also talked about how when he’s feeling badly, he should call me and we can brainstorm other activities.

    I’m feeling pretty good at how I’m responding and how we’re handling it, but am still struggling with my fears of what this could look like in the future. I really believe in recovery in the world of addictions, so want to believe that we have a plan in place where he won’t ‘use’ again, but still, I’m scared. And I can tell him this and have told him this, but am also nervous about how to be supportive even as I voice my fears. (Plus, there’s a small voice inside me that keeps freaking out about the fact that he hid this from me for so long.)

    Anyone relate? Have resources? Other thoughts? Words of support?

    • Anonforthis

      Or, can anyone direct me to past conversations on here about this?

    • Violet

      Oh man, big hugs. Any thoughts about starting off with figuring out a plan for the “really depressed days” he has every few months? Therapy, meds, etc? If the porn use is stemming from those feelings, maybe focus upstream a bit?

      • Anonforthis

        Thanks, and yes. He’s on meds, which help a lot, and also goes to therapy. We’re both learning the depression is just part of who he is and how things will be sometimes. I mean, he’s working on other things- meditating twice a day, running daily, good eating…. so he’s trying!

        • raccooncity

          If he’s already in therapy, then he should definitely tell his therapist all this, because they usually know where to get help for concurrent disorders.

          If he thinks his porn watching is a problem in his life and his therapist is dismissive of that, make sure he gets help elsewhere because if he thinks it is, then it is.

          Also: start planning some healthy self-care strategies for yourself if you don’t do that already. Weirdly, pinterest can be a great place to find ideas.

          • Anonforthis

            I agree that he should tell his therapist, and he agrees too, except that he actually doesn’t have a very awesome therapist right now, and he feels SO much shame about this. He’s working on finding a better therapist, but that takes so much time and effort and he’s already driving 1.5 hours to his current therapist- we live in an area where there aren’t very many, unfortunately, and the few that are around are people we have relationship with, which makes them not good for him. But thank you for all of this encouragement.

          • raccooncity

            That is really rough. There are SOME therapists who are willing to do skype sessions, so that might be something to look into. I’m not a huge fan, but it might be helpful in your case – even if he meets them IRL for the first meeting only.

          • Anonforthis

            Thank you. I didn’t mean to shoot you down earlier– it just feels so hard right now, especially because he (and we) are trying so hard to do our best, both dealing with his depression and this new-to-me addiction, and also dealing with my anxiety, and sometimes in our area of the country it feels hopeless. Yes, we need to move, but for various reasons we’re stuck here for a few more years. I’m just grumpy about it. : /

          • raccooncity

            Just take care of yourself first! It’ll make you a better supporter. I hope things get better over time.

          • Totch

            Good luck, it sounds like you’re both doing some really good work. Finding the right therapist is hard. Just keep taking care of yourself and eachother.

        • Violet

          He is trying, and confronting it! This is all good to hear. This is gonna be tough, but you guys sound really open with each other and willing to do the hard stuff. Make sure to take care of yourself during all this, while you’re being a support to him. I second raccooncity’s idea of Skype with some therapists if he needs to find someone new. Quick caveat- depending on where you are, this might not matter, but some licenses don’t allow therapists to practice across state lines, so try to look within your state.

    • Lolauren

      I can relate to battling an impulse that feels out of your own control. It sounds like you’re doing a great job, but my biggest piece of advice is to have your husband see a therapist. I think it would be a relief for you to not carry this all, and I think it would be hugely beneficial for him to learn some strategies for coping with the “depressed days” that are leading to this behavior. If he doesn’t learn how to cope, and ends up caving to his impulse, it could lead to more shame and spiral further. Blocking the activity won’t stop what’s causing that need. Again, it sounds like you’re being a great support, and brainstorming alternatives with him is great (nothing better than a long walk outside!), but sometimes therapy is the best thing we can do for ourselves.

      • Lolauren

        oh shoot. Just read your new comment further down that he is already doing this- I’m glad to hear that!

    • Michela

      Agree with everyone else’s suggestions, so not much else to add except to tell you that I had a similar experience- a partner once confessed to doing hardcore drugs super regularly when we were at a bar and I was drunk. I laughed, mostly because I thought he was kidding. He wasn’t. We worked through it. You sound like a couple who will do the same. Sending lots of good vibes your way!xo

    • Anon

      Errr don’t all men waste chunks of time watching porn? Obvi #notallmen but still. And I get more help on depression but this seems not terrible?

      • Anonforthis

        This reaction makes complete sense to me, but I think the concern and his recent decision to call it an addiction come from the fact that he feels out of control, and unable to resist the impulse. And, since many of his relatives struggle with alcohol addiction, I think that his use of the label ‘addiction’ is both helpful and scary for him, and probably for me too.

    • Violet

      Oh, as to possible resources, a lot of stuff to block porn can have a religious tone (for sort of obvious reasons). If you/your husband can look past that or are comfortable with that, I think there’s something called Covenant Eyes that helps with porn-blocking. Not sure if/how it works so I can’t endorse it first-hand, but in case you want something more specific to start Googling.

    • Anon for this too

      First of all, lots of hugs to the both of you. This is a hard issue to talk about for lots of reasons, but what helped me when I was in a kind of similar situation was knowing that it is very common. The good thing is that he told you unprompted, as a way to ask for help, even if he hid if for a long time.

      What has helped my partner (who had tried and failed for years to consistently stop using porn – not surprising since he had started watching as a preteen, so going on two decades) the most was 1) actually telling me and the other people close to him – the shame of keeping the secret made him feel bad, so he watched more porn to feel better = shame/badness spiral; 2) him talking to other men dealing with the same issue. I can offer support and encouragement and love but he needs his friends to be his accountability partners – I can’t be in that role and still have a healthy relationship dynamic with him (of course YMMV); 3) talking with therapists, counselors, religious leaders, or even trusted older mentors (I talked with a married woman about ten years older than us, for example) about their experiences, and asking them for guidance/advice. The two of us discussing our attitudes around porn and sex with our pastor was probably the most uncomfortable experience of my life but absolutely worth it. 4) exploring online communities like the NoFap subreddit and YourBrainOnPorn.com to gain more understanding and empathize better with him, as well as learn how to ask the right questions and also take care of myself.

      I don’t know if you are involved in a religious community or not, but I know there are support groups both for couples and individuals dealing with this issue – I haven’t been to one, but that could be a way to talk about this openly as a supplement to therapy.

      The last thing I will say is that you might get pushback from some people on the idea that porn addiction even exists, or you might feel on some level (as I did) that Cool Girls don’t get upset about a partner’s use of porn. If you and your partner decide that using porn is unacceptable, it’s unacceptable. I tried to reach out for support in one online community and got a lot of people saying “all guys watch porn! You’re just being unreasonable.” Should you encounter that attitude (and I hope you don’t), ignore ’em. Their attitude is about them, not you.

      This is long and maybe not totally coherent. But I hope it was helpful. Best wishes to both of you.

  • JC

    Last Saturday, we had my two favorite co-workers and their wives over for dinner, and it was a smashing success! I do not make new friends easily, so I was really glad we were able to make this dinner work for everyone, and it sounds like others would like to host soon! Not only that, but every person there had an advanced degree, and one is working on her PhD. It was so refreshing to be with folks whose relationships had also been through the ordeal of grad school (and who are ridiculously smart). Also, my appetizers and entrees were great, and my dessert was, while not the greatest thing in the world, still pretty tasty. My co-workers know that I’m really proud/vain about my cooking, so I was happy that the food lived up to my standards.

    • Michela

      Can I come over next?? Sounds like a dream!

      • JC

        Any time!!

  • Michela

    Ups for the week: Finished redesigning my husband’s office space (which sits in our living room) and now I smile every time I walk past it. Also took y’alls advice from last week re: mind-numbingly dull job and implemented a few of your suggestions, including listening to podcasts while working (thanks, Lisa!). Another coup: I pushed hard to revise a work process that would give me more independence and my supervisor relented! It doesn’t make the task any less mind numbing, but it does decrease the time I’m working on the task by about 60%, so that’s a huge win.
    Downs for the week: Realized we probably shouldn’t go on the tropical vacation we were semi-planning for November. We have the money, but it would be better spent towards an additional retirement account for me and/or student loans. Being an adult sure can be a drag sometimes.

    In other news- has anyone else had the same reaction as Stephanie did to Harry Potter and the Cursed Child?? I’m similarly skeptical.

    Have a lovely weekend, y’all!

    xoM

    • JC

      So while I would not say that the script is even close to being in league with the books, there was one character who made it worth it for me. I also loved the stage directions, given that I wasn’t actually watching the play– that was something new that has never been part of the HP world before. And lastly, I dreamed about Harry Potter for the first time in years, and it was the most hot-chocolatey break from my normal anxiety dreams, that it made up for all of the script’s flaws.

      • Michela

        Gah your description of your dream is reason enough for me to order it. Thanks for giving me your two cents!

    • Lisa

      I’m happy to have bought it, and I even went to pick up the book at midnight at our local store (though I skipped the pre-party).

      I thought it was ok. It certainly wasn’t my favorite HP story, and I’m still a little skeptical about some of it. I’ve heard the play is absolutely marvelous, and I’m wondering if the fact that they published the story in that format didn’t detract some for me. I’ve read a lot of plays as a former theater-kid so I was hoping for Tennessee Williams-esque stage directions that really fleshed out the dialogue, but no such luck. I did get more into the story by Part 2. I need to go back and read it again to see if I still feel the same way a second time through.

    • SuzyNP

      I raged through it like the 90s British kid that I am, and enjoyed it immensely. It’s no book, that’s for sure, but it’s enough of a teaser for me to want to book tickets (for next summer 2017) and flights to London to see the play because I’m sure it’s incredible onstage. The whole experience of getting up early to get the the book shop on a Sunday morning reminded me of the HP fever of my childhood and I just revelled.

    • I’m almost done with HP & the Cursed Child & I’m just kinda over it. It definitely feels different than the original books and the plot was too much for me.

      • Lisa

        I felt like some of the elements were a bit far-fetched and had trouble accepting them. Once everything was a bit more established by the second part, I was able to enjoy it more, but it was definitely a bit much.

    • Rebekah Jane

      The fiance bought it for me as a surprise when I was sick earlier this week and honestly, it felt a little like reading fanfiction. Everything was technically right in the universal setting, but I was still acutely aware that this was not the original author moving the characters about in their setting.

  • So yesterdaywe had our anatomy scan ultrasound which was actually really fantastic. The tech was training someone so she was super thorough and explained everything she looked at in a lot of detail. The radiologist & our midwife says our baby looks fantastic, which relieves some of my worry.

    Also we found out our baby’s sex….and IT’S A GIRL! I’m over the moon – I really wanted it to be a girl but my gut said it was a boy. I’m a little worried that my husband is disappointed but I know he loves the baby no matter what.

    • Lolauren

      This is so exciting! And I’m so glad you had a great tech explain everything- that makes a huge difference! Congratulations!

    • Michela

      Oh my gosh congratulations!!!

    • Lisa

      How exciting!!

    • emmers

      Congratulations! I’m so happy for you.

    • rg223

      Ahh congrats! So glad everything went well with the scans! Ironically my husband had gender disappointment in the opposite way (he wanted a girl, we have a son). It took until after the baby was born for him to get excited about a boy, but he is now totally into it and happy to have a son. Which is to say: gender disappointment is completely normal, and it passes eventually. Hope you’re feeling well. You’re halfway there now right? So exciting!

    • Kate

      I’m only a few weeks ahead of you and I know the feeling! I wanted a girl and it turns out it’s a boy – it took me about 2 days and now I can’t imagine him being anything but what he is (or chooses to be!). Once that baby arrives, your husband will forget he might have wanted a boy just a little bit ;-).

    • macrain

      I was disappointed at first that we weren’t having a girl, and now I am over the moon obsessed with our little boy and wouldn’t have it any other way. So, sometimes preferences have a way of sorting themselves out!

    • Annalise

      Congratulations!
      I also live in the Twin Cities and found out a few weeks ago that I am also pregnant! So excited.

  • C.

    Minuses for the past week – I’m still adrift in my search for a new career (paralegal? Hospice nurse? Web developer? Augh, decisions), and the boyfriend’s music gear was stolen. Who the hell steals from musicians?! >:(

    BUT Big Plus: last night I finally sent him the engagement ring I’ve had my eye on, which was our agreed-upon signal for “okay, I’m ready to take the next step/be officially engaged”! Yippee, we’ve finally reached the pre-engaged stage! (Instead of constantly talking about “hypothetical” proposals, engagement periods, and weddings :D ) We’re both giddy and super happy so yay :)

    • NolaJael

      Court reporter. They make bank.

  • Nicole

    A few weeks ago, someone on here posted a thank you to whoever had recommended “Overwhelmed” to them. I got curious and checked it out from the library myself, devoured it, and now my husband is reading it. We’re having great conversations both about the future and how we want our home life to be and about things that impact us right now. Thank you for recommending it!

    • Michela

      I didn’t see the original recommendation, so thanks to you I am now writing this on my “To Read” list.

    • AGCourtney

      Oh, I didn’t see the original thank you! You’re so welcome. :)

  • EllaByNight

    Several weeks ago I posted to happy hour freaking out about having an elective c section because my doctor thought our baby was going to be too big. I got a lot of wonderful, thoughtful responses and wanted to say thanks and give a little update.

    After doing some more reading and talking with my husband we both decided the c section made sense for us. Our little girl was born at 39 weeks weighing 9 lbs, 8 oz. Ultimately even though I feel a little sad about not having a vaginal birth, the c section was the right call for me. Everyone is happy and healthy and the healing process has definitely been way easier than I anticipated. There is no way for me to know if the c section was really the best decision since I have no idea how a vaginal delivery would’ve gone, but I know I did the best I could with the information I had. This whole thing has been a good lesson in being comfortable in the grey areas.

    • JC

      Congratulations on your little one!!

    • emilyg25

      Scheduled c-section is a wonderful way to give birth! Vaginal is cool too. Emergency c-section, not so much. Being comfortable in the grey areas is a tremendous gift to yourself as you embark on parenthood. So, so many times, there’s no clear right choice, just what feels best to you with the information you have. Congrats on your daughter!!

    • MC

      Congrats!!! And I’m glad you & your husband got to make an informed decision and that everyone is healthy!

    • CMT

      What a cutie!!

    • Michela

      Stop it stop it- those cheeks and that little mouth are making my ovaries burst!! Congratulations on making the decision that was right for you and on your beautiful little one.

      • Cynthiajlytle2

        <<g:i. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bz901a:….,…

    • emilyg25

      LOOK AT THE WITTLE MOUF

      Gosh, she’s just the most precious squishy thing.

      • Cheryltlarson2

        <<d:y. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bx375a:….,….

      • Doreencary1

        <<w:u. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bx836a:….,..

      • Hollydsauls

        <<o:u. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bz66a:….,….

    • SuzyNP

      Congratulations! She is beautiful!!

    • Congrats on your new baby! So happy to hear everyone is doing well.

    • ART

      ahhh perfection <3

    • Eenie

      I’m one of three 10lb+ babies! She looks precious :)

      • Emilymgaulke2

        <<m:i. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bu101a:….,..

    • rg223

      Congrats, what a sweetheart! Being in the gray area in regards to making decisions… welcome to parenthood! :)

    • SM

      Congratulations! What a joy. I so appreciate reading your story and encouragement of being comfortable in the grey area. I had my first sonogram last week and found out there might be an abnormality with the umbilical cord attachment to the placenta. Without a ton of information available, I’ve been trying to get comfortable in this grey and unknown area of what may come next. It sounds like an early c section may a possible outcome. Your experience with the c section is an encouragement and comfort to hear.

    • raccooncity

      Cute little lips! GET ALL THE BABY SMOOCHES.

    • AGCourtney

      Awwwww, congratulations! so sweet~

      Also, as a mother who vaginally delivered a 9lb, 5oz baby, I will assure you that you’re really not missing out. Trust me. x_x

    • macaroni

      Congratulations! She’s precious. My BFF had an elective c section with her second baby, after having a very rough L&D with her first. I hate that there is so much judgement about how one gives birth – everyone’s experience is different and valid. So glad you’re all doing well!

  • Lisa

    Guys, I’m so excited because my husband comes home from the musical festival/orchestra camp this week!!! He’s been gone for almost two months at this point. I’ve really enjoyed having my alone time, but I’m so glad that I’m going to get to hang out with him again.

    • Kalë

      Yay! Glad that you’ll get your sweetie back.

    • Michela

      That’s fantastic!! What did you end up doing for care packages? I know we talked about that awhile back.. Curious to hear what you came up with.

      • Lisa

        We went to see Finding Dory together when I was in town so I thought I would ship him some merch through Amazon. However, the official products were super expensive so I found some fish-shaped lollypops and sent him those instead. He absolutely loved them! He has two clownfish at our place so that tied in well, too.

        • Shawna

          That is stupid adorable. I am awwing all over the place.

        • Michela

          Well isn’t that just the cutest!

    • rg223

      Yay! You must be so excited!

  • SuzyNP

    First week of a new job (an actual paid job after two long years of scraping by on internships and badly paid temp jobs) and I’m as happy as larry.
    And Harry Potter! I gave a little yelp of glee when I read Rose Granger-Weasley (and not the other way round or just Weasley). Three cheers for Jo.

    • Michela

      Congrats!

      • SuzyNP

        Thanks!!

  • reller

    This blog hit my feed this morning: http://www.shannondingle.com/blog//im-pro-life-and-im-voting-for-hillary-heres-why

    It’s long but a really interesting read. As someone who identifies as liberal, pro-choice, and agnostic, it was really eye opening to read such a well reasoned piece by someone with whom – at face value – I would assume I would have so little in common.

    • emilyg25

      Very interesting read. Thanks for sharing.

    • Carolyn S
    • AP

      I came across this as well as the Rachel Held Evans piece this week, and I thought both were incredibly powerful. My job is organizing pro-choice and on-the-fence clergy/faith leaders in support of reproductive health/rights/justice in the deep south, and I found this perspective really insightful. I’m pro-choice, liberal, culturally Christian but more agnostic, and I’m finding most of the political dialogue online (if you can even call it dialogue) lately to be very dehumanizing of people who have different beliefs/experiences. I think pieces like this are an important counterbalance.

      • reller

        Your job sounds hard and fascinating! I’m married to a medical professional who became really involved in women’s health issues and abortion access during his schooling. It’s resulted in me becoming much more educated on the issue — and more comfortable in identifying as firmly pro-choice (growing up in a conservative religious neighborhood ftw).

        I know that, as a member of the Pro-Choice community, I have at times been snarky and critical of the Pro-life side for only valuing unborn life. Honestly, it was refreshing and a little humbling to see someone on the other side so effectively communicate arguments about valuing life through many different types of policy, as well as what it means to her to live her faith.

        • AP

          My main arguments with the post were her criticisms of Planned Parenthood (and I firmly believe most of the opposition to abortion stems more from a desire to control women’s bodies than a desire to protect babies- this is especially true in my state that shuts down abortion clinics while underfunding healthcare, child care, and education), but other than that I found myself agreeing with most of what she said. I relate to what you wrote- I’m so constantly braced for the graphic photos and misinformed rhetoric that I forget there are some very sincere people fighting for the same things I’m fighting for, just from a different rationale. And in a lot of ways we’re on the same team.

          • Carolyn S

            I wrote this whole response disagreeing about how it’s not about a desire to control women’s bodies in my experience (I grew up religious and pro-life and am now pro-choice but still religious-ish and surrounded by pro-life rhetoric), but ended up agreeing with you. I don’t think people see it as CONTROLLING a woman’s body, they see it as LIVING WITH THE CONSEQUENCE OF YOUR SIN, but really that comes back to control doesn’t it.

          • Amy March

            Exactly. I don’t want to control you, I just want to remove any legal way for you to escape living with the consequences of your sin.

          • AP

            I appreciate this comment so much! I agree that on the surface there are lots of reasons why people are anti-choice, but whenever I talk to someone religious who believes abortion should be illegal in all or most circumstances, the conversation comes down to the idea that women shouldn’t question God’s plan for their bodies or that women’s purpose on earth is to have children. Which definitely comes back to control.

          • Jessica

            You can talk to me! It’s ironic, actually — I think that my stance against abortion is one of my positions on social policies that is *least* tied to my religious beliefs, but everyone assumes it’s the other way around. Once a human heart starts beating, I don’t think any other person has the right to stop it. I guess that’s connected to religion if you trace it back to why I think human life has value, but it has very little do to with “God’s plan for women’s bodies” or the purpose of women on earth.
            And as a side note, one of my concerns with pro-choice rhetoric is that it continues to allow men to escape responsibility for their sexual acts by making the result of sex a “women’s choice” (and therefore a woman’s responsibility?). That’s an issue I have coming from a feminist perspective. (I realize there are lots and lots of ways in which society says that men don’t have to be responsible for controlling their “sexual urges” and that pro-choice rhetoric is only a very tiny contribution to this, but I still think it contributes to lowering expectations for men.)

          • Anna

            Rachel Held Evans linked to this article in her piece, which pretty viscerally illustrates the problem with using heartbeat as the marker of life:

            http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tamara-mann/heartbeat-involuntary-miscarriage-and-voluntary-abortion-in-ohio_b_2050888.html

            That said, I don’t think you were necessarily advocating for marking life by heartbeat above all else. You were probably using it as something of a metaphor for life, but this metaphor has gotten into legislation and policy as if it were medical fact.

          • SBLiving89

            I think for some people it’s about protecting the life of the baby/fetus/child before it has a voice. I look at it this way: do I believe that the fetus is alive? yes. Is there anything about it’s size that makes it okay to end it’s life? well, no, because it’s not morally justifiable to end the life of someone who is smaller than someone else, someone who is larger than someone else does not have more value. Is there anything about the location that makes it morally justifiable? Well, no, because someone living in Africa does not have less value that someone living in Canada, it’s not morally justifiable to kill one or the other based on location. Is there anything about the development of the fetus that makes it morally justifiable to end its life? well, no, because someone with a developmental or physical disability does not have less value than someone without one. Finally, what about dependency – because the fetus does rely completely on the mother, is there something about level of dependency that makes it okay to end a life? Well, no because a baby’s life at 9 months is not less valuable than a 22 year old’s. In fact, if a parent were to simply not provide for a baby – not feed them etc, that baby would die and they would be criminally charged. I 100% agree with the article posted at the top of this thread that being prolife should be more about trying to prevent abortions from being needed than it should be about just making abortions illegal. But I just wanted you to know that this prolifer is not at all about wanting to control someone’s body or make them live with their sin, in fact, I think that babies are blessings regardless of how they come.

          • Mary Jo TC

            Carolyn S, I don’t see “pro-life” people trying to control women’s bodies and make them live with the consequences of sex, but I see them so incredibly concerned with the life of the unborn child that they’re blinded to the consequences for the woman. Maybe it’s because they see women as incubators more than people, which isn’t much better.

            SBLiving89, I can follow and almost agree with most of your arguments here except the one about dependency. The dependency of the fetus on the mother infringes on the mother’s bodily autonomy–her right to live her life in her body the way she wants to, her right not to have to be pregnant or go through childbirth or major surgery. The flip side of this is that as soon as the fetus is not dependent on her, I feel that is when it has moral equivalence to a newborn baby. That’s why I personally support fairly strict cutoffs for abortion (with medical exceptions) at about 24 weeks, which is generally agreed to be the point when it has a 50/50 shot at life outside the womb. At that point a woman seeking an abortion should instead be offered the choice of an immediate induction or C-section or to continue carrying the pregnancy.

          • Gina

            ThisThisThis. I consider myself a feminist and pro-life. To me,abortion is just indefensible from a scientific perspective, and it’s becoming more indefensible the better our science gets. I actually don’t get why the pro-life movement has been tied to religion. It should be a social justice issue.

  • Violet

    Random Friday thought: does anyone else feel like skipping Episode 5 of the BBC Pride and Prejudice because there’s too much Lydia and not enough Darcy in it? No? Just me, then?

    • emilyg25

      Lydia is the worst.

      • Violet

        Yeah, seriously…

    • Jess

      I skip over that bit of the novel, too. Not just you.

      • Violet

        Right? Thank you.

    • rg223

      So my family is strange and we watch P&P together on every family vacation, usually one episode while we eat lunch. This has been going on for years, like since it came out (my dad recorded it when it was on TV). And we ALWAYS skip episode five! There’s too much of people running around in hysterics and not enough humor. I sometimes convince them to watch because I enjoy the first like ten minutes when Lizzie gets to know Georgianna… but yes, this is very much a thing.

      • Violet

        Awwww, I love that tradition! I grew up on a copy my grandmother had recorded to VHS when it aired on A&E. Good to know I’m not alone!

    • Lisa

      I just started reading Eligible yesterday, which is Curtis Sittenfeld’s modern take on P&P. I’m finding it endearing thus far, particularly at the beginning of the third chapter when she mentioned the “Fifty Nifty United States” song.

      • rg223

        What?! I love Curtis Sittenfeld, p&p, AND Fifty Nifty references and I didn’t know about this book???? I have to check it out!

        • Lisa

          Bingley is a former reality-show contestant on a Bachelor-esque show. :)

          • Kat

            This comment just convinced me to download it to my Kindle immediately. Lol

          • Violet

            Oh my god, hysterical! Will have to check this out!

    • raccooncity

      GIRL are you watching them on VHS? Mine is on 2 DVDs now and I feel like I basically have to watch them all.

      ..wait. netflix? is it netflix?

      • Violet

        Lol, no, NOW I watch them on the DVDs like you (eps 1-3 on disc 1, 4-6 on disc 2). But I am always SO tempted to FF through episode 5… then feel, like, weirdly guilty about it?

        • raccooncity

          A good life goal is to get used to taking a lil’ nap during that time.

          • Violet

            Now THAT’S a plan : )

      • Lisa

        Looks like it’s only available on the DVD service. :(

        • raccooncity

          As a Canadian I never have high expectations of what I can get on Netflix in general, so I accept this.

    • toomanybooks

      A museum in my neighborhood currently has the shirt Darcy wears in the river on display and I’m going tomorrow.

      • Violet

        Jealous!!

      • Lisa

        I got to see a bunch of gowns from the P&P mini-series, including Lizzie and Jane’s wedding gowns, at an exhibit recently! It was awesome.

    • K

      I’m a total P&P nut. I’ve watched the 2005 movie about 5 times in a year though I’ve never watched the BBC series. My favorite adaptation is the Lizzie Bennet Diaries on YouTube. It’s a modern day adaptation done Vlog style that’s quite feminist and may even make you change your mind on Lydia. Plus there are 2 companion books.

  • Sara

    Actually, Obama made Biden friendship bracelets for that buzzfeed “five things that are harder than registering to vote” video. I believe those are the same ones.

  • emmers

    So, I posted about my miscarriage last week. I think I’m almost through the physical parts (which sucked, and took a few days/really almost a week), and starting to feel better mentally. I’ve started thinking of this pregnancy as a “false start.” Who the hell knows if there will be a next time, and what that will look like, but I’m feeling more positive. I have such a supportive, awesome husband. Whether we eventually have kids, or are child-free, we are going to keep having a kickass life together. Also, I’m enjoying drinking booze again! All the booze!

    • Jess

      I’m so glad that you’re finding a positive space for all this. Hooray booze!

    • emmers

      Also, I think it’s going to take awhile to fully mentally heal from this miscarriage. I didn’t expect that, but it seems like it is. Still, my partner is awesome, even though miscarriages suck.

  • lady

    I’m scared to read Cursed Child! I’m a typical Harry Potter millennial, where HP was a huuuuuge part of my childhood. I’ve heard that Cursed Child is either an awesome continuation (in which case, yay! sign me up!) *or* it’s glorified fan fiction and poorly written/structured to boot (in which case, I’d rather not honestly!)

    Without spoilers, can anyone who’s read it confirm or deny either category??

    • Lisa

      I didn’t like it nearly as much as the original books. We’re having a bit more of a discussion elsewhere on the thread for more people’s thoughts!

    • Kaitlyn

      I liked it for what it is: a play. I knew it wasn’t going to have the rich depth of a novel and I knew Jo didn’t write it (it’s based on a story she wrote), so with that in mind, I really enjoyed it. There were some things I took issue with, but I found it to be an enjoyable story and was happy when I was done.

    • Rebekah

      It’s tripe! Characters felt shallow, dialogue was unrealistic/unconvincing, and plot was mostly predictable.
      Signed, a HP Millennial Ravenclaw

    • EF

      I’ve seen the play. It is not good. The redeeming quality is the staging, and that Scorpius Malfoy is fantastic. But the story? Most of the characters? Harry Potter literally forcing PTSD on his son? No, not good.

  • Arie

    I have kind of an odd question for this hivemind today. We’re working on gifts for our parents, to give them the day of the wedding. Both of our moms love scarves, and I was thinking we could get them nice scarves with the date of the wedding embroidered on them. I thought that would be, like, the easiest Etsy search of all time. It wasn’t – because we don’t want initials, we want numbers?! Does anyone have any tips for where to find something like this?

    • Cleo

      You should try looking for local businesses who do monogramming/embroidery, then buy the scarves elsewhere and take them to that business for the embroidery – two steps, but might be easier.

      Good luck!

      • Rebekah

        This is what I did. I bought handkerchiefs for the women in my family and for me to carry down the aisle in lieu of a bouquet, so I had to find a local embroiderer to do initials in the corners.

    • accidental_diva

      Ask if the etsy shops will do the date rather than a monogram – it should be about the same size, they may do it at no extra charge (or minimal because they may need to add a character.)

      • Lisa

        This was going to be my suggestion, too. If you PM the Etsy shop, they can tell you whether they’d do custom work or not. My guess is that anyone who is set up to embroider letters can easily do numbers instead.

  • Alanna Cartier

    My invites are officially ordered. Things are getting very real. We’ll be three months out on the 13th. EEk.

  • JennDee

    Hey hey, happy Friday! We officially ordered our save the date postcards this week–it’s starting to make things feel real!!

    And in another slice of happy yet nauseously terrifying news, we got the closing date on our dream home. It’s pushed up two days, so we’ll settle before September. Truly crazy, especially considering I’ve spent the last month scouring secondhand stores for wedding vases and spray-painting all the frames we’ll need for table numbers and signs for the wedding. Oh well, guess we’ll have to ask friends to help move the wedding boxes, too!

  • Emily C

    Long-time lurker, first-time poster! I am leaving tomorrow for South Africa (from the U.S.) for two weeks for work and then my fiance & I’s wedding is 1.5 months later! Surprisingly, I feel in control about the wedding (funny how throwing money at things can help with that!), but I am overly weepy at the thought of being away from my fiance for 2 weeks! Which rationally I know is not that long to be away and this is an AMAZING opportunity that will fly by because even though I am working, I know I will have a lot of fun! I think part of it is that I am an anxious traveller and this is the first time in 5 years that I’ve been out of the country, whereas my college self studied abroad and worked abroad several times… I feel like I am that young woman again, stepping out of my comfort zone to go on a big adventure! Anyway, thanks for letting me ramble! I feel kind of silly for being so emo about it, so in order to take my mind of it and help me pass the time during the 15 hour flight (!!!), I would appreciate any and all fiction recommendations — anything I can really get immersed in!

    • Rebekah

      Well, I think most of us would recommend the Harry Potter series ;)
      I loved Stephen King’s 11/22/63, a novel about time travel and trying to prevent JFK’s assassination. It was a really compelling page turner to me. I really enjoy the character depth that TC Boyle sets up in his novels, and most of them are historical fiction, so if you like that, check him out.
      I also really enjoyed the Maze Runner young adult series (but not the prequel). I’m sure I’ll come back with more recommendations as I think of them. Have an amazing trip!

      • Emily C

        haha of course! I have been kind of avoiding the new Harry Potter based on a friend’s review, but I know I need to make up my own mind about it. I love historical fiction, so I will have to check out TC Boyle…I go through phases where I am reading a lot and then phases where I can’t focus enough to read, so I am hoping the downtime on this trip gives me the chance to enjoy a few good books!

      • Mari

        Seconding a call for book recommendations! Going on our honeymoon in 10 days and I’m so ready for lazy reading days.

        (Oops, posted this on the wrong post in the line)

    • Carolyn S

      About 6 months ago I devoured the two Kate Atkinson books “Life after Life” and “A God in Ruins” which I highly highly recommend to everyone. I recently discovered she wrote a series of detective mystery books about a decade ago and I’m on the first one and it’s SO GOOD. The first book is called “Case Histories” but I bought them as a 4-book series on Kindle and I believe it was called The Jackson Brodie bundle”

      • Emily C

        Ah yes, I loved the BBC adaptation of Case Histories! That would be a fun one! I had Life after Life on my to-read list when it came out and still haven’t gotten around to it…oops! Thank you!

        • Amy March

          If you enjoy mysteries, Tana French’s are completely engrossing, and so was In a Dark Dark Wood which, topically, is about what happens when a bachelorette party goes bad.

          • rg223

            Plus 1 for Tana French.

          • Emily C

            Definitely adding Tana French to the list. I’ll have to download a sample when I get home, but that sounds right up my alley! Thank you!

    • Eenie

      Amazon Prime members can get a free membership to audible for several months. Nick Offerman’s books are pretty good and long (10 hours).

      • Emily C

        Oh good to know! I am huge podcast listener, so I should probably be listening to more audiobooks anyway!

        • Eenie

          I didn’t see the fiction request when I posted, but I just got a three month trial which means 1 book/month.

    • Totch

      My current blanket recommendation is a two book series by Renee Ahdieh: The Wrath of the Dawn and The Rose and the Dagger. Kinda YA, retelling of Arabian Nights, awesome lady protagonist.

    • Michela

      Liane Moriarty, The Husband’s Secret
      Sarah Addison Allen, Garden Spells (first installment) and First Frost (second installment)

      I read all three of those books in one day each on our honeymoon and could not pull myself out of them, which is saying a lot because I’m also not a huge fiction fan.

      Let us know if you stumble upon any other good books, and best of luck on your trip and your wedding.xo

    • Lisa

      I read The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver last year and fell in love with it. Not exactly the same part of Africa, but your journey to the continent made me think of it. It’s a beautiful novel!

  • flashphase

    Much needed out of town trip for the weekend. Also my man has been reading Man Nup, a groom’s guide to planning your wedding, and the results have been… amazing. We were always going to do all the planning together, but now he’s saying things like “let’s talk about the 4-5 most important things to each of us for our wedding” and “I think we should create pinterest boards.” I think I’m even more in love than before?!?

    And a question for the January brides… how far in advance did you book your venue? I’m thinking we’ll be fine to book in August, but am starting to feel a little pressure as August quickly ticks by…

    • TeaforTwo

      I think that depends on a lot of factors like where you are, how popular your venue is, and how specific you want to be about dates. January isn’t peak wedding season, but winter weddings seem to be getting more and more popular, and venues may be rented out for other kinds of events, too. (Again, this will depend a lot on where you are and what type of space you are considering.)

      I got married in December, and we booked our venue that July. We live in Toronto, and it’s a fairly popular site. It was one of my top picks before we started making inquiries, but it was also the only venue in our city that we could find with availability on a Saturday in December for under $300/plate.

    • toomanybooks

      I’m not January, but I booked my venue year and two months in advance, and got that prize Sunday on a holiday weekend that the venue didn’t impose Saturday pricing on. I didn’t think I cared too specifically about dates but I did care about not having to spend extra money for a day that wasn’t a “work night.”

      Of course, now I’m kind of wishing I hadn’t planned such a long engagement, but it is what it is.

    • LittleOwl

      Hello fellow Jan bride! I booked our venue almost exactly one year in advance. We were at a very popular location in a smaller historic town where Dec/Jan is peak season. If you want an exact weekend I would book a year out, but if you’re more flexible I’m sure 6 mo. is fine (and they might give you a discount!)

    • EF

      got married in january, the second saturday, booked the venue 1 year 2 months in advance. BUT we were severely budget restricted in a very expensive area, so when we saw something that worked so well and was shockingly cheap, we had to snatch it up.

  • Carolyn S

    Guys I need a new work bag. I’ve been using a lululemon backpack for 5 years, and it’s falling apart and I realize I need to look like an adult (ugh). It needs to be able to carry a laptop, gym stuff and a lunch, and I prefer a backpack because I walk about 2.5 km to work. Halp.

    • Eenie

      https://www.tombihn.com/collections/backpacks

      American made. I’ve had mine for almost ten years with daily use and it still looks new. One of the pull tabs broke, and they were so horrified that they sent me about 20 replacements in case any more of them broke. I personally got the Smart Alec, but you may want a slightly bigger one depending on how big your lunch/gym stuff is.

      • Eenie

        My husband really likes his go ruck, but if you have a bigger laptop it doesn’t fit well (he’s an engineer with a 17″, a macbook air or slim laptop would fit well.

        http://www.goruck.com/gr1-black-/p/GEAR-000574

      • Keeks

        TOM BIHN! Yes! (You’re killing it today, btw)

        I have an Aeronaut for travels and now I’m debating getting the Western Flyer as my everyday carrier. I wanted something that was convertible from messenger to backpack straps (I’ll use the backpack straps for walking to work, and the messenger style when I’m traveling & have the Aeronaut on my back), it’s got separate compartments for my laptop & clothes, and it fits my 15″+ laptop. Plus I know it will last FOREVER.

        • Eenie

          Aw thanks! I was put off by the price tag, but it’s held up so well. I’ll probably get a day bag type from them for when I don’t want to take my roller carryon.

      • Carolyn S

        I like the look of the Smart Alec one a lot!

    • Carolyn S

      /1.5 miles #metric

    • Carolyn S

      also maybe it could be cute?

      • Eenie

        Demands! :) I always go with function over style, especially in backpacks.

        • Carolyn S

          I do too! That’s why I haven’t gotten a new one yet, because I am beginning to believe that a fashionable, functional backpack doesn’t exist. Is this one MATURE enough for a 32 year old woman? http://www.fjallraven.com/rucksack-no-21-medium

          • Eenie

            Yes. It looks great!

          • Lisa

            That’s cute! Could one of these Tibuk2 backpacks possibly work? I’ve been using my husband’s messenger all summer for my 2 mile/3.2 km walk each way, and it’s held up very nicely. I’m thinking of getting myself one of the backpack options so I don’t have to keep switching which side I wear the strap on.

            ETA: They’re fully customizable and have some pretty cute prints.

          • Carolyn S

            ooooo those are very slick looking!

          • Lisa

            I’m playing around with the customization features right now, and I’m finding lots of prints I like, too. My husband got his off RueLaLa or something similar for a discount, but it could be worth it to design your own!

          • Kyla

            Timbuk2 is the way to go for sure

          • MC

            Ooooooh I love that one!

          • Les

            If you like that style, I love my Herschel backpack. However, I will admit to style counting for more than substance with me because I only use it for travel.

      • Shawna

        I get loads of compliments on this OGIO Soho backpack I bought before grad school and it still looks news four years later. http://www.zappos.com/ogio-soho-pack-black Fits textbooks, laptop, and dance clothes plus the gigantic pile of worst-case-scenario stuff I tend to carry around on a daily basis.

    • Not Sarah

      My vote would be for a women’s hiking backpack – I have the Eddie Bauer Cassidy backpack. This is what I have and it is very supportive, but it looks like it’s not sold anymore: https://www.patroneer.com/241192/eddie-bauer/meet-the-cassidy-packbuilt-for-women-now-on-sale (just leaving it as an example) I regret getting it in green – wish I’d gotten it in a more neutral colour so I’d look more like an adult, but having a women’s sized one was amazing when I was walk commuting.

    • MTM

      This is the backpack I use for work. It’s got plenty of room, is comfortable, and people compliment it all the time: https://www.amazon.com/OGIO-International-Soho-Pack-Wine/dp/B00QIC2ANY/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1470440329&sr=8-7&keywords=ogio+backpack

      • Shawna

        Ha, just realized I put the same suggestion in without clicking your link. Secret handshake over same cool backpack. :)

  • JLily

    I am getting married TWO WEEKS from tomorrow!!! I am starting to feel the wedding zen (I think!) but also that sinking feeling like when you leave for the airport and are pretty sure you forgot about something. I have Meg’s book which I’m preeeety sure covers almost anything, but I’m curious, what for your wedding did you forget or almost forget?

    • Carolyn S

      I didn’t try on the underwear options with my dress until the day of the wedding, and it was a good thing I had backups because the shapewear I figured would be no problem actually showed, so I was fortunately to have another thong that was sneaky enough

    • Violet

      Yay! So, totally forgot that the cake would have to go on something. I didn’t even notice on the day of, but in pictures it seems like it’s on… maybe some white circular cardboard thing from the bakery? Who knows… *shrug*

      • JLily

        My mom is on that, I think. I figured it would just go on the table? But I guess “it needs some height” (we are doing three giant sheet cakes).

        • Violet

          Oh, I mean, ours didn’t even have any kind of plate or platter! Whoops! Honestly, it didn’t matter in the end, but that’s what we forgot.

        • emmers

          We did 3 giant Costco cakes, and I think they were just on the table on whatever cardboard they came on. haha.

          • Violet

            Yep, I’m pretty sure said white disc under our cake was cardboard.

    • raccooncity

      Same wedding day as my sister!!! I have no advice because the stuff I forgot must have been so minor that I didn’t care – although I know there was some stuff surely.

      Just enjoy your day and know that the important stuff will be important stuff and the small stuff won’t be on your radar. You two are going to love your day.

    • Eenie

      I forgot to get enough sleep. Ran on coffee almost all weekend.

      • JLily

        I am going to be staying with my parents the whole week prior to the wedding, and they are super high strung and its going to be hard to sleep I know! I’ve been testing out zzzquil and have a bridesmaid on call for a sleepover should it be needed. (This is mostly because no sleep gives me un-concealable dark circles, so, you know, vanity wins.)

        • emmers

          I love melatonin, too. Trader Joes makes chewable peppermint kind that a take almost every night! But Zzzquil is a good backup, since it’s more of a drugged sleep.

          • MC

            Oh that’s so good to know! Husband has never been a good sleeper and someone recently recommended that he get some melatonin, and we sure do love TJ’s!

          • emmers

            I take it cuz I have 2 friends with chronic illness whose dr’s recommended it, so I figured it couldn’t be but so bad. It kind of gives you a sleepy window. I take it, read, and then after about 15 minutes I start to get sleepy. If you can fall asleep during the sleepy window, it helps. But if you push through and try to stay awake or can’t fall asleep, then you’re out of luck, which is why the zzzquil may help if it doesn’t work. But I take melatonin most nights. It does give me vivid dreams sometimes though!

          • Eenie
          • JLily

            I have some natural calm (?) that is a magnesium supplement and I think it definitely helps with anxiety-related trouble sleeping! Not sure if it has zinc too though.

        • Mari

          My wedding is one week before yours (next weekend) and I’ve been waking up every day this week hours before my alarm with thoughts racing through my head. I’m really worried this isn’t going to abate until after the wedding, and I need to get enough sleep next week to not end up being a zombie for the actual events…

          • JLily

            We had a bit of a fiasco (a whole bunch of people thinking they were invited when they weren’t and how to deal with feelings vs. keeping our budget in check/the intimacy of the wedding in tact, you know, wedding emergency status) and the zzzquil helped me that night (well, sort of night, it was 2 am when i took it)! I will say I was a bit groggy when I had to get up 5 hours later, but if you have time for a good nights sleep it could help! Also, downthread someone mentioned zinc + magnesium.

    • Lulu

      A bra to wear to the hair salon. (Both my Friday dress and wedding dress had built-in support.) The cards for our moms and officiants. SNACKS. The right cord to connect our ancient iPad to the venue’s sound system. And none of it was a problem, though I did need an emergency milkshake in the middle of photos.

      • JLily

        Ah yes I need to write those cards, probably in advance. Thank you! And noting the necessity for snacks too.

      • Lisa

        Or, if you can get away with it, a button-up/zipper shirt/jacket/robe with no bra on. If you don’t want marks on your back when you put on the dress, you’ll need to be bra-less for an hour or two beforehand at least.

        • Lulu

          I did not feel like I could get away with it but hadn’t considered the no marks on back upside!

      • NolaJael

        Emergency milkshake…yumyumyum…

        • Lulu

          It made for really cute photos, and we went back on our anniversary!

      • ART

        “A bra to wear to the hair salon” – and not like I did, which was wear a sports bra while having my hair done (I was so out of it), unless you, too, would like to shimmy out of a sports bra by pulling it down over your hips. I mean, I made it happen, but there was a moment when I realized what I had done and thought I might have to cut it off!

        • Lisa

          I am amazed you could get the sports bra over your hips! I have trouble getting mine over my broad shoulders (big shoulders/tiny ribcage), and I can’t even imagine trying to go the other way.

    • emilyg25

      I was doing my own makeup with a cat eye liner and I forgot the liner! Fortunately, my bff had some.

    • emmers

      I was sick, so I needed hot tea! I had my mom run out and buy me some. And ibuprofen- I actually got some from a guest (this was post-wedding). We forgot our phone charger when we left the wedding, since we used it to power our phone-playlist.

    • Totch

      Whatever you do forget, either give up on it or send someone else to get it. At a family wedding recently, the poor groom missed a big chunk of the afterparty when he had to run back home for the guest book.

    • I forgot a pillow for the ring bearer, which we realized at the rehearsal the day before. My coordinator handled it and there was a pillow on wedding day.

    • We forgot the little caramels my nana had wrapped up for everyone to take home after. But that was all good because it meant that I got bags of caramels to eat the next few weeks after the wedding.

      Oh, and we forgot the bouquet that you give to Mary during the ceremony until the morning of the wedding, but the flower lady managed to make something up from flowers lying around my parents house and some ribbons and it looked pretty great.

  • InTheBurbs

    Does anyone else want to take the next 2 weeks off and do nothing but watch the Olympics? I’m loving how strong the US women are…in every single competition…

    • Lisa

      My boss and I have been geeking out about the Olympics all day, and I started subconsciously humming the theme earlier. I can’t wait for tonight!

    • Carolyn S

      Slightly downer but still somewhat happy story. My dad died a few days before the 2004 Olympics, and having Olympics to have on at all times really made those two weeks where we were all moping around the house before we re-entered our real lives a lot better.

    • Eenie

      I always LOVE the Olympics. But I really think they need to change the format so it isn’t as detrimental to the hosting country. So, until that happens I’m not watching it. I’m still really happy for all the athletes who get to compete, but NBC isn’t getting any viewership from me.

      • Amy March

        The format of the coverage? I think that is the least of the problems to the host country.

        • Eenie

          I didn’t say the format of the coverage. I meant the format of the event. The new infrastructure that is required, displaced people, economic effect, etc.

          • InTheBurbs

            Fair enough…

          • Amy March

            Oh okay yeah! I just thought since you specifically referenced NBC that somehow their coverage was causing problems.

          • Eenie

            Nope, it’s just the only way I can take action at the moment. I know it takes a lot of work to get to the Olympics, and I’m really happy the athletes are seeing their dreams come true. But the IOC needs to get their ass in gear and NBC has some influence there that they could choose to use.

          • rg223

            Genuine question: I’ve only ever heard of the Olympics being good economically and infrastructure-wise – what are the negatives?

          • CMT

            I think the research shows that the supposed economic boost doesn’t actually happen, or at least doesn’t last very long.

          • Eenie

            Others may have better articles, but this seems to sum it up on a pretty high level.

            http://www.citymetric.com/skylines/here-are-five-good-reasons-not-host-olympic-games-1740

          • Amy March

            There was tons and tons of coverage before Beijing about widespread destruction of neighborhoods, same before Sochi, environmental issues, problems dislocating poor neighborhoods in Rio.

            The economics of the Olympics are complicated, but at least for the countries who have been less prepared to deal with them, there has been a significant impact on the local population to create facilities that aren’t useful and that they can’t afford. It’s a trade off for the IOC- do you give places like Rio, which desperately wanted the Olympics, a chance, knowing it’s not necessarily great, or do you stick with safe rich cities and make the Olympics less global.

          • rg223

            Replying here to basically reply to everyone: thanks! I did know about the issues mentioned, for some reason they didn’t occur to me as being “economic” though clearly most of them are. I struggle with this, because on the one hand, there are so many problematic aspects of the Olympics on the whole, but on the other hand, if we hold countries up to a particular standard to host or participate, a lot of the world wouldn’t be included. That’s not to say though that people shouldn’t pressure the Olympic organizers to change the format (I’ve said before that they should). It’s just very complicated.

          • Eenie

            I agree! There’s no perfect solution. But there’s something that’s better than what happens currently.

          • Totch

            Even in cities that you would think could handle the Olympics don’t benefit as much as you think. Montreal hosted in 1976 and didn’t pay off the debt they accrued during construction until the 2000s. Vancouver broke even on the 2010 winter Olympics, but the small neighborhood of housing they built for athletes (which was supposed to transition to just being a regular neighborhood) has taken years of criticism and had a lot of trouble getting off the ground.

            Neither of these ruined the host city, and some of the infrastructure built has really helped (like a new train line Vancouver got). But it’s always risky to host.

          • emmers

            I was thinking today of the two Olympic stadiums I’ve visited (Beijing and Madrid), they seem really sad, post-Olympics. It doesn’t seem like they’re actually used for much later, but maybe sometimes they are?

          • Eenie

            The one in Greece is apparently housing refugees according to This American Life.

          • Lisa

            There’s a high increase of temporary jobs, which brings a huge workforce into the host city, but then most of those people end up unemployed afterwards. There are also a lot of new edifices built to accommodate the sports, the athletes, and the tourists during the games, but after the games are over, those areas typically fall into disrepair because there isn’t enough tourism to keep them maintained or a function for them in the city’s normal time.

          • Actually 2 economists just released a study that shows that the majority of Olympic cities, they go into debt and never see the boost from tourism. The only exceptions were the 84 games in LA (due to their sports infrastructure) and the 92 games in Barcelona.

      • Lisa

        I think they need to pick a steady rotation of cities that have hosted the Olympics before and reuse those that have already put together the infrastructure to handle the games. I get the idea of showcasing a new country each time, but it ends up leaving many of them worse off.

        • Eenie

          Yeah, or just seriously cut down the opening/closing ceremonies. Spreading the events out across the country. Letting several cities band together to host. Have a set list of cities and then have them partner with another country/city.

        • Keeks

          Or expand it to a region rather than a city (which has been happening in practice even if bids are made on the behalf of a city). Just thinking about my state of Ohio, which has a million possible sports venues between baseball, football, soccer, basketball, Lake Erie, OSU. I think creative reuse of existing facilities is going to be the way to go in the future if the Olympics are going to come back to the US or Western Europe.

    • rg223

      I tossed my son in the air while singing the theme song and shouted “It’s your first Olympics!!!” this morning, so yeah, I’m right there with you. (He’s 11 months, FYI. Newborn-tossing is not recommended by the Olympic committee).

    • Katherine

      ME. I have major Olympic fever 365 days out of the year. I went to the 2010 Winter games and am always on the lookout for the way to get to my next games.

    • emilyg25

      I looooove the Olympics. But I feel really conflicted this year. It’s hard to feel jazzed.

  • Shawna

    Back from honeymoon! We had a really lovely time. No swelling violins, just another great trip together. My mom kept saying, “remember, it’s your HONEYMOON” but when I felt that pressure of having to make it the-bestest-most-romantic-ever, that’s when I got overwhelmed and twice had tear-filled nights/mornings. He’s the best, though, and talks me down from those freakouts. We just travel well together and enjoyed ourselves quietly. Some really wonderful highlights (amazing food and wine in Burgundy and Rome, visiting a 15th century hospital, OMG gelato, Paris Disneyland (HUGE Disney nerd), seeing In the Heights in London), but mostly just nice to get out and see the world before diving back in…

    Because I just officially launched my acupuncture practice this morning! Sent out my email blast to basically everyone I know saying I am here, come see me! So if anyone’s in the SF Bay and needs acupuncture, ahem, come see me (I’m in San Francisco and Albany)! http://www.shawnaseth.com

  • the cupboard under the stairs

    Regarding the call for under-$5k weddings: We split our celebration into two days, and the ceremony day was definitely a $5k affair. The reception day…not so much. Do we qualify?

  • Hannah

    I just need a quick reassurance: just because my wedding is in the evening on Saturday, it doesn’t need to be black tie… right?

    My mom has come roaring out of 1988 and is insisting that we make the event black tie. (Key fact: Most of my friends — most of the guest list! — are early in their careers and it would be distinctly difficult for them to come up with black tie attire.) Is this an outdated custom? It certainly feels weirdly pre-determined and fussy to me!

    • Eenie

      No black tie needed. We bought out a restaurant in a pretty classy part of the city and everyone just wore cocktail attire. Does she want the groomsmen/bridal party in black tie? That just seems more like an opinion that you can choose to ignore.

      • Hannah

        Weirdly, she was super insistent on wedding party in black tie but then enthusiastically watched us buy my partner’s *suit* (i.e. not tux) . However, the salesman was pretty insistent that dark suits are the new tux, so…

    • Totch

      Nah, ours is a Saturday night wedding and like Eenie’s it’ll be closer to cocktail than black tie. One piece of advice I got from APW that’s helped me: find examples of weddings (maybe from APW?) that look like what you want and show those to your mom. She’ll see that it can be done and can be lovely.

    • CMT

      I have been to many a Saturday evening wedding and not one of them has been black tie.

    • toomanybooks

      Yeah, I don’t think that’s a requirement at all. I’ve never even been to a black tie wedding. I’m sure I’d love the opportunity to dress up, but I think every wedding I’ve been to has been cocktail dress. (Also fairly early in my career.)

      • Hannah

        Likewise! And I’ve been to several Saturday evening events!

    • Mari

      Nope, not a requirement!

      -Lady getting married in the late afternoon/evening on a Saturday

    • emilyg25

      Fuck no. Black tie means all your guests need to wear gowns and tuxes, you need passed apps and a multi-course plated meal and open bar with top shelf options. We had a Saturday evening wedding that was a pig roast with (gasp!) paper plates.

      • Hannah

        Thank you! That is exactly what I’m afraid of. I figure if I give my mom some of what she wants (maybe the plated meal) I can keep some of what I want (beer and wine and a fun, easy vibe).
        PS – Your wedding sounds amazing!!!

    • Lisa

      Uh… if this is a thing, we completely ignored it. We had an afternoon ceremony with an evening reception (Catholic gap), and I’d say most of our people were in cocktail/dressy attire. Even the fanciest wedding I’ve been to so far wasn’t black tie. Maybe this is a generational/regional thing?

  • Mari

    Getting married in one week tomorrow!! We’re in a good place with final details – just tying loose ends (oh, and writing our vows!) this weekend. We’ve been slowly writing our ceremony for the last month, and I thought we’d write our vows earlier than this, but it actually feels just right to do them now, after having lots of good discussions about our ceremony wording, components, readings that speak to us, etc.

    It’s pretty surreal that this is all happening very, very soon – with a 1.5 year engagement, I kind of didn’t reaaally think the day would actually get here, yet here we are. While I’m a new commenter, I’ve been reading APW for years and we couldn’t have planned as kickass a wedding as I think this will be without APW and this community <3

    • Poppy

      Our wedding is a week from Sunday! Right there with you on the “I kind of never really believed the day was going to be a REAL day and not some mythical impossibility like February 31st” thing.

      I’m excited. But also nervous. But mostly I just can’t believe this is real life.

      • Mari

        YES! Congrats to you and your person, and best of luck next weekend!

      • JLily

        Our engagement has been long, too, and mines in two weeks–still doesn’t feel real to me either!

  • Lulu

    In the past half-hour I have applied for both a puppy and a job, both of which I want extraordinarily badly. Please, universe, bring on some life upheaval– the good kind!

  • Katherine

    We made it through our cross-country move, though not without a dead car battery and a tire blowing out. Unfortunately, the rest of our stuff doesn’t arrive until Tuesday, so it’s camp chair and air mattress life until then.

  • AGCourtney

    I’ve had several people ask me if I’ve read Cursed Child yet, and the answer is…no. (When people in my circles think of HP, they think of me.) I’ve heard weird things about it, and I’m just generally on the fence. I read a couple pages during a Target run today and it seemed…weird. Like a fanfiction I would try a chapter of and then abandon for being too out there. I’ll probably read it eventually, but I’m not in a rush.

    As has been documented in previous HHs, I started tutoring as a second job to save up for dental work, and I’ve found that I really enjoy it. Right now I’m working through a company, but I’ve been pondering trying to do it on my own, too. I’m starting to look up more of the business side of it. We’ll see where it goes!

    The MN Renaissance Festival was at the Mall of America on Sunday to drum up interest for its opening later this month, and we hung out there all afternoon and had a blast. My daughter *loves* Ren Fest, so much so that I’m getting a season pass this year so we can go as often as we can. She was so excited to see people again and watched the stage acts with the most endearing expression of rapture. It’s fun to see her love something we love, too.

  • anon today

    Hi all! I am late to the party because I was out at a real life happy hour with some of my favorite coworkers, whom I haven’t seen since school got out. It was a blast, except I was mostly silent because I am almost 9 weeks pregnant… enough so that my lifestyle is a bit upended (SO tired, food is a weird experience, no alcohol… and so many other little things), but not far enough along to tell anyone! It’s so awkward to hang out with people! I am thrilled to be pregnant, it was very much planned and wanted (though, a complete surprise after trying for 10 months). I just wan’t wait ’til I can stop feeling like a liar! We have our first real appointment next week, and I think if all goes well, I might just start telling people already…

    In other news, today was the last day of summer camp/tutoring for me and I am thrilled. I have a week off and then back to work for workshops and classroom set up. I’m going to savor the next 9 days…

  • Cheryltlarson2

    <<d:y. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bx375a:….,…

  • Jess

    I’m getting married tomorrow! There might be thunder! It will be epic either way!

    It’s been really amazing to see our friends and family come together around us.

    I wanted to give a big thank you to this amazing community for being a resource and a guide through it all. I can’t wait to keep coming back and learning from all of you. And sharing my new stories as they come.

    Here’s to croquembouche, bridal brogues, and a moment 9 years in the making.

    Cheers,
    Jess

  • Anjli

    I just got engaged! :D Well, 3 days ago now, but just back from Barbados today :) Now I can continue reading APW but less in secret cos it’s legit now ;)

    • NotMarried!

      Awesome! Congrats!

      • Anjli

        Thank you! :D My APW books arrived today, exciting!

  • Doreencary1

    <<w:u. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bx836a:….,.

  • Hollydsauls

    <<o:u. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bz66a:….,…

  • EF

    Hey hey I know this is late, but for low-budget weddings, how recent do you want them to be?

  • NotMarried!

    Welp … I’m engaged and 8 days into planning my wedding for August 27, 2016. Yes, this month. Yes this year. (I keep having to clarify those two points as I contact vendors and shop).

    I have a dress, and a venue bought and paid for, hotel rooms booked, and a florist and photographer lined up but not yet paid/signed. All in all …. a 4 week engagement is happening! We’re also planning a working-honeymoon in Ramstein, Germany … recommendations are welcome if anyone’s been out there.

    I’m super excited to get to spend my life with fiance! I just can’t wait for the rest of planning purgatory to be done!

    • Lisa

      Holy cow, congratulations and good luck on planning a wedding in a few weeks! We didn’t get over to that area of Germany during our honeymoon, but I’m sure you’ll have a wonderful time!

      If you’re up for a couple days trip, we really loved Baden-Baden and had a lot of fun there, including going to the Roman Baths. Frankfurt and Stuttgart, which seem to be the nearest major cities were both kind of meh in my opinion. I’d check out the Rick Steves Germany guide and see if he has any suggestions for the area. I think you might be close to some of the wine country though (like Pfalz) so maybe that could be an option?

    • I have vacationed in the Mosel River Valley area, which is 1.5-2 hours from where you’ll be but worth a trip, especially if you like wine, biking, and/or medieval villages. Cochem is the main cute but touristy town; the other little villages along the river are great – such as Ellenz, Beilstein, Bremm – and you can rent bikes and ride along the river pathway between them. My favorite castle I went to in Germany is also in the area, Burg Eltz. You can park down below and take an easy hike up instead of parking in the lot up near it. Good luck with your short planning time frame, and have a great honeymoon!

  • Trinity

    I submitted our wedding a few years ago as a Wordless Wedding, but it was definitely a budget (under $5K) wedding. I’d be happy to provide more details if it would be helpful. https://apracticalwedding.com/2013/11/michigan-backyard-wedding/

  • Cynthiajlytle2

    <<g:i. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bz901a:….,..

  • Emilymgaulke2

    <<m:i. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bu101a:….,.