Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Video Save-The-Dates

Chris and I celebrated our 6 month ENGAGE-aversary this past Saturday. Which means we have 16 months until the wedding. AHHHHHHHHH so much to do, so little time!! Ok.....just kidding, there is plenty of time. Chris and I celebrated with a romantic trip to Century 21 department store, followed by a trip to see the ever-classic romantic comedy "Avatar 3D", followed by a wonderful dinner at an expensive, romantic restaurant, at home consisting of Ellios Pizza (what a trip down memory lane that was) and closed out our night at a local bar....with friends. Haha so it wasn't that romantic of a day but really, it was just fine...even Perfect! :)

This isn't relevant to today's post at all, but I thought it was worth mentioning. I know you've all been wondering what my dress looks like. this time it's for real folks. This is it....

It's a CAKE!!!
This way...if I get hungry during the ceremony or reception...I can just eat my dress!!! Plus, I can save money by purchasing both a dress and wedding cake in one! I know..I know...I'm a genius.

Moving on, now for the real meat and potatoes. It's really funny that I've had a post about video save-the-dates in the works for over a week now and today on Good Morning America they showed a viral video of a couple from Australia's movie trailer save-the-date. This video has taken off like crazy. I actually saw a post about this video yesterday, but the video had been removed from Youtube and I couldn't view it. I was able to find and finally watch the whole thing on the Huffington Post today. Sorry, you'll have to scroll through the article and hit play on the video post:

Jeff and Erin's Epic Wedding Save-the-date

Video save-the-dates seem to be the growing trend in weddings these days. Most of them are just slideshows of pictures to a love song...boring. Please, I do not want to watch a 10 minute slideshow of pictures throughout your relationship. I love me some slideshows...but only if I made it or I'm in it.  Also, some of these videos are just too long in general, which you'll see in the last video I've posted. There actually are not a ton of save-the-date videos out on the web that I could find. I mean there are a lot, but in the grand scheme of things, there are really only a handful of these video save-the-dates. However, I have a feeling by this time next will basically be the norm. 

Really folks, if you're going to do this...they HAVE to be good. Please just keep them short, sweet and to the point. Here are some examples (sorry there are a LOT here) that I think are so cute and clever!

This one is so clever!! A+

This one was made for two actors. They took clips from actual things they filmed for either television or film and clipped it together to make this. Also, the pictures at the end of them getting married, were for a Nikon commercial they filmed together. So they got to use photos from that shoot for their save the date! It's not as good as the trailer in the Huffinton Post, but it's good: B+

I think this one is adoralbe! It's simple...kind of like a slideshow, but a video slideshow so it's more interesting. I also really like this song. A-

This one is interesting. Good idea, and some cool videography, but just executed all wrong and it's also waaaay too long, to the point where it just gets awkward. A Save-The-Date should NOT be long...I'd say no longer than 3 minutes, tops. This one is 6!! Don't watch it all..I beg of you! You can scroll through it to get the general idea. C

So that's my (not-so) Professional thoughts on Video Save-The-Dates. Now I have to go work on a script for mine! (Chris is going to looooove this) ;)

Monday, January 18, 2010

"One Perfect Day"

I just spent the better part of my afternoon fixing every single image and web-site link on this blog so that a new window or tab opens when you click on it, instead of over the blog page you are reading. That's been annoying you all right?! (Well, all two of you. Hi Mom and Dad!) Anyway, I know it's been annoying me and I'm happy to report that the issue is resolved!! So when I tell you to click here, you can view in a whole different window while at the same time still continue to read my blog!!

Sorry, I'm just very excited by this revelation.

I don't have a whole lot to talk about right now. For whatever reason. I can NOT get motivated to look into bands and/or DJ's for our reception. But I KNOW that's my next step in the wedding planning process.

I will say that I'm getting very excited for my dear friend Mandy's wedding coming up this May. Plans are well on their way for her big day as well as her Bachelorette party!! I can't talk about it here...but trust me, her sister has planned a night that's going to be epic! Or, Legen......wait for it......Dary! (for all you "How I Met Your Mother" fans out there)

Last week I finished reading "One Perfect Day: The Selling of the American Weddiing" by Rebecca Mead.

I thought this book was pretty interesting. One wedding coordinator had been hired to plan a "Divorce Ceremony", complete with a ceremonial burning of the marriage contract in front of their friends, followed by a party. I guess this was quite the amicable divorce..but still! Mead talks about Las Vegas (of course), Gatlinburg Tennessee weddings (apparently a HUGE wedding town), Elopers, Destination Brides, and My favorite: Walt Disney World Weddings! (which was the most interesting chapter for me.) Chris and I LOVE us some Disney World and I seriously would be ok if we honeymooned there, BUT some of the "add-on's" for a Disney Wedding are kind of hilarious. For $1000 dollars you can have your ring bearer dress as a horseman from Cinderella and carry your rings on the pillow that Cinderella's glass slipper was presented on. I mean, come on...can you get any better than that??? (I also just signed up online to have a Disney World Wedding brochure mailed to my house....details to follow!!)

I read Jodi Kantor's 5/13/07 NY Times review of this book, and she didn't like it! She wrote: "In other words, Mead has reduced the American wedding to its cheesiest and most venal elements, and then written a book about how cheesy and venal American weddings are."

Yes...Jodi Kantor has a point. Mead does take a rather cynical perspective when talking about weddings. She was focusing on those crazy Bridezillas! Weddings are not all bad and they are not all overly elaborate. I think Mead was trying to explain how easy it is for weddings to be turned into these crazy affairs because of how many things are thrusted upon a bride from the moment she gets engaged, how everyone is trying to "reinvent" the wheel and how many resources we have available to us in this day and age. I could write more..this wasn't very insightful, but I have to catch my train.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

I Found THE Dress!!

Cross one more thing off the good old "to do" list, I have found my dress!!!!

I went home for the day yesterday to go back to Sandra's Bridal in Nazareth, PA. They were having a Casablanca Trunk show. I like the Casablanca dresses I've seen so I wanted to try on some new styles but I mostly wanted to re-try on this Casablanca dress that I had tried on after Christmas.

I loved the cap sleeve and mostly loved the back of the dress, especially the lace extending beyond the satin on the train.

When I put this dress back on yesterday...I hated it. It fit all wrong, it wasn't flattering, and the bow underneath the bust just hung there and looked terrible. I kept saying to myself "Like this dress it...this is why you came here today" But I just didn't, and neither did my family. It wasn't how I remembered it at all. I tried not to get discouraged and just kept trying on other dresses that I had picked out. There was one strapless Casablanca dress that we all really liked...but I still was just very concerned about the whole strapless dress. I love strapless dresses, but I'm really not comfortable in strapless, and I just can't see myself in strapless for my wedding day. Then, the woman that was helping me out, Debi, brought me a dress she happened to see in the back that she thought I would like. It was a Pronovias Dress, and I loooved it. I tried it on and we all really really liked it. It's a mermaid style dress, which I honestly hadn't thought I would go for, (and I'll have to really adhere to my wedding diet) but it gives me quite an hourglass figure, and had everything that I was looking for in a dress. It's called "off-white" which I think would probably be considered the same champagne color that is often offered for wedding dresses.  Even though the store was offering a discount on Casablanca dresses for the weekend, she still gave us a 20% discount on this Pronovias dress, coming to what I think of as a very reasonable price for a dress that I LOVE!

It was very exciting to FINALLY settle on a dress and it's amazing how deciding on my dress now sets off so much other planning. i.e. Now I can focus on bridesmaid dresses. What flowers will match the color and material of my dress?  I was in a really good mood after making the decision and ended up spending the rest of the afternoon/evening with my sister, Melissa. We went to Five Guys Burgers for dinner (Way to kick-start that wedding diet, huh?) and then went shopping at Target. It was really great to spend time with Melissa and I honestly can't remember the last time we just hung out like that. It was such a good day and 100% worth going home, even if it was for just a day. I left Melissa's house at around 7:30 and got back home by 9:30!

So...I didn't want to show anyone my dress before the wedding because I want everyone to be surprised, but I love it so much, I decided that's silly and I really should show it to everyone and get some feedback. Here I am modeling it:

I know I's gorgeous right?? I just fell in love with the sleeves.

Haha and you thought I was going to show it to you.

Reception Hall: Check
Church for ceremony: Check
Wedding Dress: Check

P.S. My dad was doing a search of my dress on google and came across this website from China that creates a knock-off dress of any designer/style you like for $278. My dad was right when he said the best sentence was this:
"All the items will be produced after you place the order. And we will improve dress,which will be more simply and easier than the original ones."

 They'll change the dress for you to be more simpler and easier?? Why? What will it look like then? Look,  I'm all about finding a good bargain for your wedding dress. But..this is just Shady McShade Shade:
Dress Times

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Happy 2010!

Happy 2010, I shall call this "The year of Weddings!"
 (not mine..just everyone elses!)
I'm very much looking forward to the following weddings this year:
The Strassman/Leef's
The Longo/DiChino's
The D'Angiolini/Chalmers
The Todosow/Rodzianko's

Any more I should be aware of??

I hope everyone had a looovely Holiday and New Year's!

As of last night we have booked the church for our wedding! Chris and I met last night with Father Cunningham at St. Gregory the Great in Bellerose. Father Cunningham was a real nice, old man who made us both feel very welcome. Seeing as how I booked this appointment 3 weeks ago and right before Christmas, I prooobably should have called to reconfirm our appointment, but I didn't want to bother him and figured he must make appointments like this all the time. Well...he was a little confused when we arrived, he had forgotten to write the appt. down in his book, eek..whoopsie! But he was there in the office anyway and was available so he didn't mind meeting with us. We sat down to talk with him and went through all the neccessary paperwork and questioning. Name, age, birthdate, parents names, place of birth. We'd chit-chat a little, make small talk and then he led into the hard-core questioning:
"Do you plan on raising your kids catholic?" -sure "Do we have any mental or health issues?" - no "Have we ever been married before?" -no "Am I pregnant?"- no (I thought this was funny because they obviously want to make sure that we're not jumping into marriage before I have the baby. That would mean I'd have to be pregnant for the next 17 months) "Did I ever have children in the past?"- no "Are we both  above 18?" -yes "what's your age difference?" - 8 months "Are both our parents fine with this?"- as far as we know "Do we plan to remain faithful throughout the marriage?" -uh duh.... and so on and so forth.

I felt he was more "inquisitive" about my religious upbringing (or lack thereof) than judgmental about it, which was very refreshing. At one point, he asked me if I wanted to become catholic. I smiled, opened my mouth to speak and before I could say anything he jumped in and said "You're not ready. You need to do it on your own terms when you're ready and that's fine." Phew..I didn't even have to explain myself? This was going great!

I'd say the only thing he kept pressing was that Chris should go back to church more on Sundays. Which really, was harmless. Then, Father Cunningham told us about the In-Home Pre-cana Classes
Here is the wikipedia definition of Pre-Cana:

Pre-Cana is a course or consultation Catholic couples must undergo before they can be married in a Catholic church. The name is derived from John 2:1-12, the wedding feast at Cana in Galilee, where Jesus performed the miracle of turning water into wine.
Approaches to Pre-Cana vary among Catholic dioceses and parishes. Often six weekly sessions will be led by a priest or deacon with support from a married Catholic couple. Common topics include: compatibility of the couple, basic principles of Catholic marriage and family life (namely theological meaning of marriage), conflict resolution within marriage, rules the couple are expected to follow.

Honestly, I'm super pyched about Pre-Cana. Heck...I think that I personally should decide on who is allowed to marry and procreate in this world anyway (as in..actually be responsible for handing out licenses to those who pass my test and reject licenses to those who don't) Sooo I'm all for making an engaged couple go through a five week session before deciding to marry and perhaps one day procreate. If it can cause one less divorce in this divorce-happy world...then great! There is always room for improvement in anyone's relationship or marriage, so bring it on!
Let me explain...I realize we all have different religious or non-religious rituals/traditions/beliefs/ backgrounds/etc. But, I think it will be very interesting getting together with other couples who are planning to get married and just talk about "relationships". Those basic topics listed above are extremely interesting to me, with or without the religious aspects thrown in there: "Compatibility of the couple" "Basic principles of marriage and family life" "Conflict resolution within marriage" I loooove talking and learning about this stuff and as long as I take the religious components with a grain of salt (because that's what I need to do personally), I think that it will be an extremely interesting 5 weeks. If the classes end up being way more religious than I think and I'm the only "non" catholic and they all hate me and smite me....well, then I'll be humming a different tune. It's a little weird because we don't have to take Pre-Cana classes until Fall/Winter 2010 so that's a loooong way off before we even really do anything with the pastor and the classes. But you can bet I'll prob. have a TON of entries when they start up!

To end, I got this facebook message from my 9th grade english teacher two weeks ago:

"Hello Laura - My mom is keeping me posted via mailings of the latest happenings in the Lehigh Valley (I'm currently in NH). I just read your engagement announcement and wanted to send a Congratulations! I wish you both the best!"

What a pleasant surprise to hear from someone from so long ago. And who knew people actually read those engagement announcements?! Her mom must have seen that I graduated from Parkland around the time she was teaching there and sent it to New Hampshire. I love little reconnections like that, they make me happy.

That's all for now...I have lots to update on tomorrow regarding my dress dilemna and may also discuss my thoughts on being 25...what??!!