Monday, September 27, 2010

All My Love, All My Life: Commence Panic!

Hi folks (*blows kiss, takes deep breath.) This post has been kinda hard for me to write (hence my blogging absence lately) because it involves some moments of the wedding where I acted, um, how shall we say? Less than favorably? I'm not saying my breakdown wasn't justified but I'm still not proud of it. Don't judge.

Anyways, where were we in my crazy wedding saga? Oh right, I'd hopped in my mom's rockin' Subaru station wagon to be chauffeured the short ride up to the venue, blithely, innocently unaware of the chaos waiting for me ahead. I arrived on schedule, ready to take all the bridal party and family portraits before the ceremony, which was set to begin at 4:30 pm.  What I found was not the organized bustle of our vendors putting together the wedding as scheduled but rather pure and utter madness.

Thanks to the rain, both our rental and catering companies were very, very behind setting up.  I witnessed my dad, still in his work clothes, frantically hanging cafe lights and lanterns.  I saw our caterer still arranging the bar and our DOC desperately trying to arrange two large tables in a room only big enough for one of them that were to hold the guest book/card and cookies/lemonade tables, both of which were supposed to be set up outside. Our florist (who had all our bouquets) was nowhere to be found. And then...

My heart sank when I looked at the tent and my mom approached me with a look that was half sympathetic and half mildly crazed despair  and told me that somehow the dance floor was about half the size we had requested.

Oh, F*CK.

She was currently on the phone with my MOH's parents, who live in town, to ask them to drive half an hour out to Home Depot to buy plywood to fill out the dance floor since the ground was so wet from the rain, not to mention the band needed a dry space to set up their equipment.  Our rental coordinator was calling every other rental company he knew, trying to get more dance floor pieces.


I had a knot in my stomach the size of a corn dog at a county fair in Texas as I literally watched the wedding I had been planning for 15 months crumbling in front of my very eyes.  Believe me when I tell you, folks, it was bad. 

Kevin from Aviator Rentals, who clearly felt horribly when he saw my face collapsing, assured me they'd come up with something to make the dance floor work and to go wait out of the rain in the Tannery (ceremony site) so Kelly (our photographer) could start taking photos.

It took every ounce of self control and lots of deep breaths for me to listen to him but I followed his instructions, praying something would work out and hoping that this would be the worst of the drama.

Dodging rain drops :)

Yeah, right.  I walked back up to the Tannery and was consoled a bit by my dear, dear bridesmaids.  Then my bouquet was offered up to me by the florist, who had finally arrived.

And this, my friends, is where it gets kinda ugly; I looked at the bouquets and promptly burst into tears, turning my back on the florist and walking out of the room.  Yeaaaaaah.

*embarassed blush

What, might you ask, did the tear-inducing, drama-causing, fury-spawning, offending bouquet look like?

I know. I know.  Now you all think I'm absolutely nuttybonks.

The bouquet is actually quite lovely. It was really just the combination of everything going wrong at the same time; the bouquet was simply the straw that broke this bride's resolve to stay calm.

However, in my's not anything close to the pictures I had emailed for inspiration. To prove I was not a completely psycho bridezilla, here they are:

Ohhhhh me oh my, I still get a bit wistfully jealous when I see beautiful, colorful bouquets like this...

You see what I'm talking about? Yup, there's no color.  I really wanted (and had expressed this desire to the florist) bright pops of yellow in my bouquet and what I got was an almost all-white, traditional bouquet.  And to add insult to injury, I thought (and still think) it was really small.  All in all, a complete disappointment.

Sadly, the bridesmaid's bouquets were also upsetting, as once again, they were nothing like the inspiration photos I had provided.  Pretty, yes.  What I had envisioned and pictured? Not even close.  Siiiiigh....Can you tell I'm still a little bit bitter about the whole thing?

I am happy to report that my bridesmaid's somehow managed to pick me up off the floor and set me straight. It took about five minutes of crying and comforting before I was able to get over it (because I had to) and come to terms with that fact that while things were far from perfect, it was still my wedding and I would make it work like Tim Gunn on steroids, dammit!

Looking back on the day, I totally regret not being able to rise above all the stress and mishaps but at the time, I just couldn't. And yeah, it still super-duper-mega sucks that I cried unhappy tears at my wedding but hopefully, I made up for it with all the joy and happiness at both the ceremony and reception.

That's the good thing about the low points on your wedding day, there are so many high points to make up for everything else,  I was able to get back into the spirit of the day after a few minutes.

While Kelly snapped detail shots of the ceremony, I peaked out the window at everyone still furiously, franticly setting up, wondering how the rest of the day would fare and praying the rain would stop so Mr Trail Mix and I could have our first look outside as planned...

Follow along, if ya want!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Not Exactly a Post-Wedding Chop...

But it's definitely a post-wedding change! I've been a fake blonde for several years now but honestly, I'm sick of how expensive highlights are to maintain.  For real, it's ridiculous, especially in New York City (like, two hundred bones and up! Ouch!)

So with the onset of autumn and my desire to save some cash, I decided it was time to ditch the highlights and go back to my natural color (which is a sort of medium brown.)  No more trips to the hair salon for this Bee!

Anyways, for fun, here's my before picture (taken about a month before my wedding:)

Yikes, clearly not wearing make-up in the above photo but that's par for the course, we know this :)

And here's how I look now:

Definitely a change but nothing too drastic.  Some of my coworkers noticed when I walked into work the next morning and some (mostly the guys) did not. 

And if we're being really honest here, one of the minor reasons I decided to go for it was because I have this little thought in the back of my mind that you're not supposed to dye your hair when you're pregnant.  Don't get all excited, I'm definitely not knocked up (relax, Mom!) but we're slowly getting closer to that point and every little baby step (natch!) in the right direction fills me with glee.

So bring it on, fall, my hair and I are ready for you and all your hot-cider-sipping, scarf-wearing, pumpkin-carving glory! 

Did you do a post-wedding chop (or change)? 

Monday, September 6, 2010

Never Been a Bridesmaid

Have you guys all been a bridesmaid in a friend or family member's wedding? Just asking, because I haven't.  And honestly, I sort of feel like that unpopular girl in high school who listed 'spending time with pets' as one of her favorite activities in our senior bios (true story) about the situation, which is a bit pathetic on my part.

I know, I know, you're probably thinking to yourself  'Trailmix, you dummy, being a bridesmaid ain't all that it's cracked up to be.'  I know that.  I know there are still a lot of brides who make ridiculous requests of their 'maids, like choosing a hot pink, floor-length satin dress with a black lace corset top (another true story.  And the dress really was as heinous as it sounds.)

But...I still want to be a bridesmaid...Like really really badly.

And I'm not even sure why.  I guess it's because I love weddings and I love my friends, so being a bridesmaid is the best of both worlds, right? And it is a special honor, so there's the mildly (and by mildly, I mean intensely, heated) competitive side of me that somehow feels like I'm losing at the Game. You know, the game of who is the most popular based on how many times they have been a bridesmaid? What, you don't play that game too?  Ohhh.... *squirms in embarrassment...

See,  now you're all thinking that I've gone so far off the deep end, it's starting to get shallow again...And of course the rational side of my brain knows that, no, the number of satin-poly-blend dresses one has been required to purchase for ceremonies of holy matrimony is not directly proportional to the number and strength of one's friendships.

But deep down inside, I suppose there is a nagging fear in my heart that maybe this could be true. I think about some girls that I know who have been a bridesmaid 7 or 8 times already and I start to wonder what's wrong with me?  My insecurities bubble up and I worry that no one actually likes me and that I have no real friends and that I'll die a lonely, bridesmaid-virgin, sad lumpy sack of potatoes. Tragic.

Don't worry, I'm not lying awake at night losing sleep over this or anything but sometimes I think about it and feel a little down.  And for the record, I am mostly convinced that the main reason I haven't been a bridesmaid is because hardly any of my friends have gotten engaged or married (makes being a bridesmaid a bit difficult, right?)

So I'm curious to know, have you been a bridesmaid? If yes, how many times? If not, do you care?

PS- Many thanks to Mrs Swan for taking on this topic a few months ago, respek!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

All My Love, All My Life: Get My Pretty On

Ahhhhh, yes, now where was I? Oh, that's right, I just finished telling you about our kick-a$$ bonfire the night before the wedding.  Suffice to say, it took this bride a little longer than usual to feel like her normal, sunshine-y self the next morning.

But I did finally manage to drag myself out of bed because I had made plans with some friends to go for a short run in the morning.  This was an awesome way to start my wedding day, even though some of us struggled more than others.  It also started to rain while we were out and the optimistic, naive part of my brain was still convinced it would clear up by the afternoon. HA.

After the run and a delish, communal breakfast of french toast and fritattas with everyone, thanks to our awesome bed and breakfast (Shaker Meadows) the time had come for my "bridal transformation." (Snicker.)

Now, here's the deal with me and make-up: I don't wear it. I consider the day a success if I remember to put on deodorant (Really.  I forget about half the days, much to my co-workers' dismay.) The few times I attempt to put on make-up are for a night out on the town and even then, I'm only good for the basics, like eye shadow and mascara.  I'm honestly not sure what "primer" is or how to use an eye-lash curler (those things are scary-lookin', yo!)

So when it came to my wedding, I had zero interest in hiring a make-up artist.  I trusted my friends to do my face and I think it came out great; like a prettier, more vibrant version of my au-naturel look, very low-key.  No false eyelashes or air-brushing in sight, which was perfect for me and for the vibe of our wedding.

Same deal with hair.  I'm a wash-n-wear kinda girl and I just couldn't bite the bullet to have my hair done by a stylist.  I was rather lucky in this department though, since one of my bridesmaids is a total hair pro and she did my lurvely lady locks and I loved the results.

I also have no professional getting-ready photos to share with you guys (sorry!) This was a conscious decision on my part, though, that had nothing to do with budget or time constraints.

Even though my photographer mentioned that the "getting ready" portion of the day often results in some of her favorite shots, I just couldn't muster up any enthusiasm for the idea. It felt impersonal, somehow, to have a stranger (as lovely as Kelly is) be a part of the intimate ritual of getting ready for my wedding.

I wanted to be surround by friends, I wanted to drink champagne and be filled with giddy anticipation. I'm not particularly photogenic (in case you haven't figured that out by now) and I didn't want to worry about whether I had a double chin in the last shot or making doofy, ugly faces while getting ready (which I obviously did but who needs a pro photographer to capture those?)

So all the photos I have are from friends, which for me, was the way I wanted it.  And as for Mr Trail Mix? He could care less whether he has photos from getting ready, all he cared about was catching as much of the USA vs England World Cup game as he could before he had to head out.

Um, alright, well, now it seems kinda silly to show you the few photos that I do have from friends, after all that rambling but here's some shots from the girl's suite, pre-wedding...

Notice my crazy shirt? It was part of the final gift from my amazing bridesmaids.  They put their heads together the week before the wedding and each one was assigned one of the "Somethings" (you know, something old, new, borrowed, blue...)  So BM Jwills made me that shirt, which is from our alma mater, for my "something blue"...

Bridesmaid Dee provided the "something new" by procuring a lovely bottle of rose champagne, which we promptly cracked open...

BM Jo offered up "something borrowed" in the form of a few beautiful, embroidered ribbons "borrowed" from her work crafting closet (which turned out to be extremely handy in a few hours, you'll find out why later on.) And MOH Pip gave me a beautiful vintage handkerchief to put in my clutch (which I just realized I never showed you guys.  My bad, I'll bust it out in a future post, for sure!) for my "something old."

Aren't my bridemaid's the sweetest things ever? I know, they really are...

Cheers! One last toast and it was time to put on my dress, which I did in about .5 seconds with zero help from anyone. My dress was pretty low-key as far as wedding dresses go and with nary a button, corset, petticoat or crinoline to deal with, I just slipped it on, zipped it up and was good to go.

Jeepers, Mom, open your eyes!

My flower wreath (OMG, I loved my flower wreath SOOOO much!) was attached with some bobby pins and after one final photo with my mom, it was time to head to the Tannery Pond in my pimped-out, mega-deluxe, super-sweet...Subaru station wagon?

Yup, I got a ride with my mom. And yes, it sorta felt like when I was back in high school again and had to be driven everywhere.  But it was about a two-second ride and I didn't care, I was about to get married!

 At this point, I still thought everything was all good up at the venue site (cue ominous music here) but when we arrived...Well, you're just going to have to wait until the next recap post to hear about the most stressful two hours of my life...Dum dum duuuuummmmmmm...

Catch up, if ya want: