Saturday, September 29, 2012

Wrapping it up...

On Wednesday I flew to Austin to wrap up our wedding preparations.  I did a few fun things that day, like pick up our marriage license!

Woohoo!  We're getting married!

I also spent the flight to Austin finishing up the last few table names, and that night I decided to make cute little signs for our chairs:

Table names! Minus the three I finished on the plane. 
Sewing bride.

The last sewing project - signs for our chairs!

On Thursday, Mr. C flew in, and we went to a concert in Gruene, by ourselves (!) before all the wedding madness would start in earnest on Friday. We got him his first pair of cowboy boots for the occasion.

On Friday morning, because of the weather forecast, we went to get some essential accessories:

The clear one is for me.  :) 

Friday night we threw a great welcome party, with almost everyone who will be at the wedding in attendance.  More on that later...

And this morning, I woke up to this text from bridesmaid Chicago J:

Yeehah!  The wedding day has arrived!

This view outside our window:

Good thing we bought those umbrellas.
And this surprise delivery from my husband to be:

Yellow roses!
I have no words. 
That's it, hive, it's my wedding day!  Mr. C has gone off for a shooting adventure with all his buddies, and I am soaking up some alone time this morning before the bridesmaids and my mom arrive in my room for hair and makeup.  I know the day will totally fly by - I kind of can't believe it's here.  But stormy weather or sunny skies - I know I am ready to walk down that aisle and marry my love.

Signing off for the last time as a miss (!)  - Miss Cauldron

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Rain, rain, go away!

Y'all, this is so not cool.

The weather for Saturday has been shifting around all week - ranging between 40 and 60% scattered thunderstorms.  But this morning it's now full on 70% thunderstorms.  No sun even in the little graphic anymore.

I talked rain plan with my coordinator over email this morning.  I know it will all be fine, but the vision of the day that I had in my head is slowly disintegrating.

Here's hoping the weather gods decide to clear the skies for us.   If not, I just have to remember that everyone will be there, love will fill the room, we will be married at the end of the day, and our photographers will work some magic to make it all look beautiful.

But right now I'm pretty bummed out.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Something old...

I decided to carry some heirlooms with me on my wedding day as my "something old."  The heirlooms are from my mom, my grandmother, and my great-grandma, all on my mom's side.  I'm honored to carry something from each of these women as I get married, and my grandmother and great-grandma have passed on, so this will be a small way for me to remember them on the day.  I'm sure they would have loved to be part of it all.

The first is my mom's original wedding ring set.  We wear the same ring size, so here it is on my hand:

Manicure is Essie's "Minimalistic" - I think it might be the wedding color!

Then we have a 2-and-a-half dollar coin (it's smaller than a penny!) from 1909, which belonged to my grandmother and was made into a pendant.

Apparently these 2 1/2 dollar coins are worth something close to $300 today!

And the third is a cross from my great-grandma.  I still remember the day that she unclasped it from around her own neck and passed it on to me.

My great-grandma's cross. 

I am planning to have all three of these pieces attached to the stems of my bouquet somehow - I'll leave that up to the excellent work of the girls at Posey Events.

Are you planning to wear or carry any family heirlooms during your ceremony?  What are they?

Saturday, September 22, 2012

That darned checklist...

As the days before the wedding are starting to wind down, I am determinedly checking things off my list!  It has felt like it kept growing longer even as I was checking things off, but today I think I'm finally on the flip side, and it's actually getting shorter now.

  • Final dress fitting, check.  (Soooo pretty!)
  • Shipping for dress organized, check.
  • Send emails to bridal party and family regarding logistics for the weekend, check.  
  • Locate heirlooms that will be pinned to bouquet, check.
  • Email everyone coming to the wedding to remind them we have a website with lots of information, and we also have buses taking everyone to the wedding (don't be late!), check.   
  • Send final table setup with names of tables and number of chairs to the venue, check.
  • Print out tags for favors and double check list, check.
  • Remind Mr. Cauldron how much I love him and how excited I am to be his wife, check.
  • Send emails to transportation vendors with detailed directions and times, check. 
  • Find a nail salon for the Friday before the wedding, check. 
  • Request final lists of registered guests from wedding hotels, check.
  • Calculate final payments due on day of, and organize envelopes for tips and thank yous, check. 

And those are just a few of the things I've done in the past day and a half.  I feel like a task accomplishing machine!  It makes me quite happy.

Now I'm off to reward myself for all this work by watching last week's Project Runway for an hour.  (Any other PR fans out there?!)

Monday, September 17, 2012

Letting things slide...

I am mere weeks away from our wedding, and I feel like I have slightly lost control of my senses.  How complex can one evening of our lives be?  Apparently, rather complex, as I still have a to-do list a mile long.  It's getting shorter, but I sure wish some of these things would handle themselves.   Some of them are bound to fall off the list before the wedding day.  As plan-ful and organized and OCD as I can be sometimes, I pretty sure I'm going to wind up being okay with that.   Here's why:

This weekend, we spent all day Saturday rocking it out on a raft-up (a big boat party on the water) with a bunch of our friends.  This party had nothing to do with our wedding, but it was such an awesome gathering, it felt like the celebration of the close of summer and the intro to our fast-approaching wedding festivities all at the same time.  My husband-to-be took himself back home to our boat late in the evening after having slightly too much fun, and I kept on going (dancing!  so much dancing!) till the wee hours.  The weather was glorious all weekend, and we had a fantastic time.

Me and Mr. C, on our way to partying it up a lot, standing on a boat that is sadly not ours,
but is seriously awesome.  (No photos of the dancing -  we will save that for the wedding!)
In order to have so much fun on Saturday, we spent Friday evening and Sunday morning getting to and from the party (a six hour trip on the boat each way).  Then on Sunday when we got home, we did some boat maintenance and got home after dark.

Bottom line: this means I totally got nothing (zip, zero, nada) done for the wedding this weekend.  Am I slightly freaked out about having missed out on two days and two nights of possible get-wedding-things-done time because I'm such a control freak and I am quickly running out of free time to finish everything before the big day?  Yes.

But - I wouldn't trade the fun I had this weekend for anything!  It reminded me that in the end, our wedding day will be all about having a blast with those who love us, and that will absolutely happen whether I have perfect programs and beautiful escort cards, or not.  (And a relaxed bride is totally a happy bride, right?!)

Did you give yourself a break as your wedding day approached?

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


My co-workers totally pulled one over on me today.  I have a regularly scheduled catch-up meeting once a week with one of the girls who works for me (we'll call her A), and we sat down for our meeting only to be bumped from our conference room by someone who needed it for an external meeting.  A then suggested another conference room that I know is often in use, so I suggested another smaller room that I thought would be more likely to be available.  She went along with my suggestion, but when we got to the smaller room, it was locked!  She suggested that other conference room again, and I finally said well, I guess we can check to see if it's in use.  We walked down the hall to the room, and I could hear a bunch of people inside chatting, but she walked right up and opened the door....

...because it was a surprise bridal shower!  Everyone from our 30+ person HR team, even the crew from our office in New Jersey, all were there, smiling and clapping.  It took me a second to realize what was going on, and I remember leaning against the door frame and laughing when it sank in.

I am sad to say that of course I took NO pictures because I was so caught off guard.  But there was a fabulous ice cream cake, a beautiful card, a banner that said "bridal shower," some treats from our Crate & Barrel registry, and many many good wishes.  I also got to practice my cake-cutting skills with a big knife, so I now feel prepared for our cake-cutting at the wedding.

Did anyone surprise you at work with a celebratory event?  Were you completely oblivious?**

**Apparently when we got kicked out of the first room (which was not planned, by the way), a couple of our other team members were right down the hall with the cake and a gift bag, and they thought I saw them, so they were totally freaking out thinking that they had ruined the surprise.  I of course hadn't even noticed them, as I was too busy figuring out which room we should relocate our meeting to.  Then when the smaller room's door was locked (also not planned), we spent a few minutes trying to find a key before A suggested the other room again and I agreed to check it out.  She did an excellent job keeping her cool as I dragged her around our floor while she tried repeatedly to get me to go to the right room.  Silly me.

Name that boat part!

This Sunday I put my wedding DIY hat on and wrapped up a few remaining projects.  The first project was a small addition to our guest tables.

As I've mentioned, we're naming the tables after different parts of a boat - a nod to our love of sailing.  I hand-stitched all the table names onto muslin, and the names will be displayed in embroidery hoops on each table.  However, most of our guests aren't sailors, so I wanted to give them all a little more information about boat parts; in particular, the part their table is named after.  In addition, I wanted to provide a menu on each table so guests will know what kind of barbecue deliciousness awaits them!

I bought a bunch of Tolsby frames at Ikea about a month ago, and this seemed like a good way to put them to use.  One side of the frame could display the boat part info and the other side could house a nice little menu for the evening.

I worked on these in OpenOffice, creating 4X6 boxes on presentation slides and inserting a boat diagram and the boat part definition in one box, then the menu in the other:

Work in progress on my desktop
I used a diagram of a boat that I found on the web, and replaced all the part names with clearer text by placing new text boxes over the names that were already there.  I also added some boat part names that weren't on the original diagram, but were names of parts that we were using for our tables.

Boat parts, with altered names by me. (original graphic found here)

I printed them all out on white card stock, cut out the 4x6 rectangles, and inserted them into the frames, after pulling the frames out of the plastic wrap, peeling two static-laden sheets of protective cellophane off both clear plastic sheets in each frame, and screwing the base of the frame on.  (Any other bees who have Tolsby frames: make sure to add some time for full assembly into your plan!)

Here's how they turned out:

All the little frames finally finished up!

One example of the boat part side, with the definition of a boom. 

And the menu side. 
I chose not to print in color on these because there will be flowers right next to them, and the bright embroidery of the table name itself, so there will be plenty of color around to liven things up.

So what do y'all think?   Will the guests be happy to learn more about their table name?  And to see the menu for the night?  I'm getting hungry already.

Friday, September 7, 2012

The final countdown...

Now that we're fully in our actual wedding calendar month (eeeek!), a number of things seem to be taking on some more urgency.  I mean, not that we aren't organized and we haven't taken care of pretty much 90% of the things that need to be done...but there are still a lot of things in that remaining 10%.  In fact, some of that 10% is really important, and most of them were things I really couldn't take care of until this very fast-moving month of the wedding.  Things like:

- final table assignments and printing/assembling of our favors-slash-escort cards (couldn't exactly finalize this until all rsvp's have come in)
- programs (couldn't ask our readers until we were sure they were coming to the wedding - as one of them was an overseas couple and we didn't want to put any pressure on them to be here!)
- final orders for food and drink on Friday and Saturday nights
- final transportation plans (buses are dependent on guest numbers)
- wedding license (very important!)
- finalize florist order and other reception decor (need actual number of tables)
- final dress fitting (yay!)

Okay, that's not that many things.  But it seems to take so much time to put this seemingly small number of things to rest!  And there are of course other things I could have probably wrapped up sooner but didn't get to, or didn't have time for, and now it's totally crunch time. I can already feel my inner all-nighter cram-for-the-exam energy coming through!

Do you feel like there was a lot more to do in the last few weeks before your wedding?   Did you love that crazy period of time, or loathe it?