Wednesday, April 18, 2012

A Brew of Blessings

Happy Wednesday, people. Sheesh, we are ALMOST to the weekend and I am ECSTATIC. John & I are venturing down to our future home{town} to start browsing for a new place to live this weekend. We've been making calls and setting appointments with realtors and such all week! {Sidenote: we are moving to Bristol, TN.VA.... give me a shoutout if you have any contacts!}

I started blogging in an effort to journey the adventures John & I are going through. Some good, some bad. But it's all part of life, right? Well, after starting this blog I was able to quickly make friends who are going through the same situations as me, whether it be:

1. Planning a wedding
2. Dating a medical student {on Twitter I refer to this as #MedStudentRomance... haha}
3. Moving away from family for a job/significant other
4. Or simply those girls who love to talk fashion & beauty products

Anyway, one of the girls that I have followed since I started my blog is a beautiful girl named Tara. She is a living DOLL! Her blog is almost addictive!{not to mention it's called A Brew of Blessings & I have a slight addiction to coffee!) Every post has something that I can relate to... and as I was saying... she is one of the gals who I was quickly able to make friends with simply because we are going through such similiar life situations & have a ton in common.

Tara is planning her dream wedding right now also. She and her fiance, Stephen, are tying the knot in 4 short months. Stephen lives in England and she in America... how crazy is that?! She will be moving to England after the wedding so she will be experiencing some of the same things I've gone through while living away from my family.

So without further adieu let me introduce to you Tara & Stephen
Aren't they a gorgeous couple?

Now, read about Tara & Stephen and their road to WEDDED BLISS!

Here are the questions I asked Tara:

1. How did you & your soon-to-be-hubby meet?

We have actually known each other, or at least of each other, for as long as I can remember. However, it wasn't until he came over from England to visit and attended a fundraising event that I was hosting that something just "clicked".  He agreed to bake 200 brownies for the event {I think he knew chocolate was his in} and the evening of the fundraiser he approached me and asked if I would go to a theme park with him the following day. Being so exhausted I reluctantly said yes and oh-so glad that I did.  He got me to go on a roller coaster, which was an item on my bucket list, and I "accidentally" grabbed his hand. {Ladies, despite what he might say it truly was an accident ;)}. Two days later we went on our first official date night. I was invited to dinner at his family's vacation home the day after that. He was on a place back to England the next day so we decided not to hold any expectations. However, he made sure to call me from the airport to say hello and from then on the emails, phone calls and Skype dates became more frequent. And the rest is history!

2.What were/are you most excited about in regards to the planning process?

I've tried to keep in mind that it is about the marriage and not all about "the day". So going into it I was excited about the usual... finding the perfect dress, picking the colors, securing the vendors etc. But the thing I've enjoyed most is the premarital preparation that S & I have shared as well as spending some fun quality time with my mom, close friends and bridesmaids preparing. I'm also highly looking forward to the showers and the bachelorette weekend! The most important thing to me is finally getting to be with the love of my life & anything else is considered icing on the cake!

3.What are your wedding colors?

Our colors are a light gray & peridot {think a lighter version of Tiffany Blue}

4.How many attendants do you have?

We each have 7, which I'm sure seems like a ton! We just couldn't decide and honestly could've kept going but we just had to try and draw the line somewhere.

5.Have you had any wedding "nightmares"?

Most definitely.  The most bizarre and funniest one I had recently was that it came time for the garter toss at our reception and I realized I never ordered a garter! So our dj "solved the problem" by making a garter out of a napkin ha. So random but a great reminder to get that ordered & checked off of the list.

6.What are you looking forward to most on the wedding day?

S & I aren't doing the more modern "first look" so I'm looking forward to making eye contact with him as I walk down the aisle. {gives me goosebumps just thinking about it}.  I'm also excited about the father/daughter dance :) My dad isn't the sentimental type but he isn't telling me the song he has chosen for our first dance which I think is really sweet, I'm looking forward to seeing what he chose.

And here are the questions I asked Stephen:

1.What is one part of the wedding planning process that you want a say in?

I think for guys generally we have a different perspective on weddings as many women, tara included, grow up their whole lives dreaming of and planning their wedding day. For guys it is absolutely the most important and special day of our lives too but it isn't something we have such detailed visualizations about. With that said, as the manager of a design department and a former event planner I have and continue to love getting involved with all parts of the wedding planning!!! For me, its the tiny details that I know or visualize most where I have been most vocal like the transport and the food.

2.What are you looking forward to most on the wedding day?

It sounds cheesy but two things- seeing my bride for the first time and then hearing her say I do. I am so blessed to be marrying tara and might finally believe it is real after she says "I do"!

3.What do you picture the bride's dress looking like?

Tara laughs at me when I say this but I picture a big flowing white dress kind of like Belle from Beauty and the Beast but in white. I'm so excited to see it and know she will look amazing in whatever it looks like!

4.What is the bride most stressed about in regards to the wedding?

Err good question. Given all the cost involved I think we both just care about people coming out of the day realizing how much we love each other and having enjoyed seeing us commit to each other.

5.What is one song that the DJ must play?

Great question and I know there are lots of special songs we have lined up for the day but given our surprise entrance plans its gotta be the song that me and tara will enter in because then it will all be underway. I'm not going to give it away other than to say its by the Black Eyed Peas.

6.What do you love most about the bride?

Having admired Tara since she was 16 years old, she is the most inspiring person I've ever met. She makes me a better person through her love and support and I know I would be broken without her in my life and by my side. I love her more every single day and although of course she is the most beautiful woman I can picture, she also has a beautiful heart and is kind, caring, generous and sooo much more. I am so excited for us to finally be together in marriage and for the rest of our lives!

One last picture of this precious couple!

Okay, is that not sweet? I mean, I read the rollercoaster/hand-grabbing thing and just DIED laughing. Too funny & oh-so sweet! I loved that Stephen had so much to say about it - it's melts my heart! I sure wish I could make it to their wedding. Tara & I have traded a few ideas and I know hers is going to be out of this world! Can't wait to stalk it!

John & I were asked the same questions... you can imagine my answers! I gave lots of detail & explanation & well, John... ya... he gave ONE WORD answers! So I asked him to at least form a sentence! He's just a man of few words & I don't hate it... that gives me more time to give my opinion! Ha :)

So that's that for today... if you want to read my answers you can go to Tara's blog here... & even if you don't want to read about that mushiness - check her blog out anyway... it's always a fantastic read!


Saturday, April 14, 2012

Life as of Late {&Vlog!}

Life has been crazy busy lately. Between work and wedding planning I am swamped. I find myself going into my office late at night to get stuff done.

We are only 84 days away from the big day! Eeek!

John & I can't believe how quickly our wedding is sneaking up on us! We are both thrilled... John, poor thing, studies like a mad-man. I am so proud of him - he is so dedicated and I know he will make the most fantastic doctor. He gives his whole heart to anything he sets his mind to and I really admire that about him!

So here's any update on what I've been up to lately, outside of selling old goods on Facebook :)....

John's mom and dad came to town last weekend and spent Easter with us! We had the most terrific time - the first night they were here we were up until midnight!

We went to Roanoke for dinner one evening for dinner and visited the Hotel Roanoke.

Gemma Easter Picture! John with his mom & dad before church!

I love him! 

John's parents kindly brought one of our place settings so that I could take a look! I am SO excited about beautiful, new dishes!

Happy Easter! I took advantage of being able to FINALLY wear white! Yippee!

I have a new favorite brand... a local store in town sells this dress and a few other beautiful pieces and I am just crazy about all of their items!
After a very LONG Friday for the two of us, John & I went to a fun Mexican spot to indulge in chips & salsa!
We went to Roanoke today to get tuxedo stuff taken care of and we were able to stop and eat at Awful Arthurs!

We left the mall and found an Arkansan parked next to us.  I swear my heart skips a beat when I see Razorback stickers or Arkansas tags :) We all know where my heart belongs.
I love spending time with John & eating REALLY unhealthy foods. That wedding diet needs to kick in...NOW!

Mill Mountain & Roanoke Star 

This star sits on top of a large mountain that I drive by when I work out of our Roanoke office... we decided to venture up the mountain and check out the star and the view! It was beautiful!

My company's office is just right behind us!

City of Roanoke

So that's my re-cap of whats been going on lately... now... for the VLOG I promised.. .

Instead of imbedding it I will just insert the link - I am embarrassed because I've never done anything like this before and I look ridiculous! I just hate to not keep a promise :)

So ya, there ya have it - my warning - no critics welcome to watching my hair tutorial VLOG :)

Click here to view a tutorial on how I curl my hair.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend!


Monday, April 2, 2012

The Sweetest Gifts

Happy April, Y'all!

Here are a few reasons as to why I believe April is one of the best months:
  • The weather is perfect for driving with the sunroof open!
  • Finally time to bust out the summer attire: bright colors, dresses, wedges, bronzed skin, large hats, LWDs {Little White Dresses}, etc.
  • Teachers, students, etc. have something to look forward to - summer vacay!
Wedding season is just fun in general, especially fun this year because I am only 3 months away from our big day!

If you are like me, you've got a long list of events on your calendar, graduations, birthdays, bachelorette parties, weddings, showers, etc. All of this is so much fun - yet sometimes it can be challenging to find the right gift, ya know?

Well, in an effort to spread my love for the Sweet Tea Paperie I have some CUTENESS to share with you... I call this the THE SWEETEST GIFTS because I don't know that you could go wrong with ANY of these!

{you can click or touch the photo to enlarge it!}

1. Uber cute iPhone cases: Yes, the Chevron is super adorable but there are SO many other patterns & colors! I'm a huge fan of monogramming and iPhones so a combination of both is a WIN!
2. Bright Tumbler Cups: How cute is this? Who doesn't go to the pool or beach without a drink at hand? These are so adorable - they too come in a variety of colors! Also, I use my Tumblers at work to make sure I drink enough water! {Maybe a good gift idea for a college graduate who is about to enter the real world?!}
3. Eye Catching Luggage Tags: Once again - it's summer time and lots of vacations are happenin' - who doens't need a set of 4 cute luggage tags?! - these luggage tags also come in a variety of patterns and colors.
4. Floral and Fun Recipe Box: This would be a FABO gift for a college graduate or a newlywed who may be transitioning from cafeteria food or fast food  to cooking in their own kitchen. Anywho - the monogram is super cute - especially for a newlywed who has NEW, fresh initials!
5. Funky Serving Tray: Another super thoughtful gift idea - seriously, everyone loves receiving personalized gifts that are also functional!
6. Stylish Stickers: SO many options for colors and prints, also. These would be a terrific gift for a Kindergartner who is moving to First Grade - these stickers can be used for their books, school supplies, etc. OR for a high school senior who would like to label their belongings before moving into a dorm!
7. Personalized Notebook Case: I personally just received one of these in hot pink - I love it. I use it to organize all of my wedding details, take notes at meetings, and stash important papers or business cards. It comes with a clip board, notepad, pen, adorable stationary, & an address list. The handles are great for me - with work I am constantly traveling and moving from place to place so it helps keep everything together.
8. Adorable Announcements: Whether you are hosting a baby shower, wedding shower, birthday party, graduation party, etc. these are TOO cool! With a variety of prints, colors, patterns - these could be a great way to make invites or announcements more fun.
9. Gorgeous Gold Monogrammed Necklace: I personally am COVETING hardcore - I've wanted one of these jewels for ages - but I told myself that after my initals change I will have more reason to make the purchase. This is a piece of jewelry that can be worn with everything and is so classic.
10. Super Fun Stationary: there are 10.2 billion styles of stationary - I went with the Lacoste look on the one featured above {as well as the popular chevron style}... Stationary is never a bad gift to receive. I can never have enough. Growing up I saw my mom write people notes all the time, whether they were sick or she was just thanking them for something small - she always sent a note. ALSO, those future college graduates could really use these- after job interviews it is VITAL to send a hand written note thanking the interviewer for his/her time.

{click HERE to look at more!)

Okay, my final gift idea... a PERSONALIZED, planner. Total cuteness. It's true - we all need to be more organized... I am the first to admit that I am constantly working on it!

These planners are A. ADORABLE and B. functional.. and YOU design your own!

Here are few of my personal favorites:
(click HERE to see more options!)

Customize your planner to fit with your NEEDS or ways of organizing!

Finally, let me get ONE more thing in - the items that I have posted only touch the surface of what else the Sweet Tea Paperie has to offer!
Buy your friends and family gifts they will love and most importantly - gifts they will use!  I love seeing a friend USING something I have given them!
Click HERE to view more products from the Sweet Tea Paperie!

PS: so according to the hair tutorial feedback it is unanimous that I do a VLOG... this should be really funny... I will have that coming to you soon!


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