Saturday, September 24, 2011

Seven Quick Takes: Wedding planning is consuming my life

1. I am *almost* done printing the invitations. (Many, many thanks to my dad.) When I get actually done, I will do a longer update with pictures. Maybe. I make no promises.

There are many Tales of Woe surrounding these invitations, so if you're not in the mood for first world problems, I'm warning you in advance not to read that post.

2. The bridesmaid dresses got ordered successfully a few days after my last update. The invitations have so consumed my life that I've almost forgotten the Tales of Woe surrounding the bridesmaid dresses, but I'll try to recreate that process.

First I had to get everyone to decide what dress they like best. This was actually shockingly easy but took me a long time because I have social anxiety and stuff. First, I asked Grace to hunt down dresses that were modest, came in blue, and cost less than $100. Turns out that's pretty much impossible unless you go the direct-from-China route, and I didn't feel like doing that. So we ended up looking mostly at Totally Modest, which had the widest selection of dresses in styles that I liked. I think I sent Grace about 5 or 6 styles and asked which ones she liked best. So she ranked them in order of preference. Then I showed Andrea the dresses and she liked them too. While we were looking, we came across this dress, which wasn't one of the ones I'd shown Grace because it doesn't have a price listed and I didn't want us getting our hearts set on a dress that would end up being too expensive.

I showed the dress to Grace next time I talked to her, and she said she liked it too. (I think she even said she liked it best, but I might be revising history a little bit there.) So then Emily and I finally made our schedules intersect so I could show her the various dresses, and she unknowingly picked as her favorite the one Grace and Andrea had both liked the most.

So then I finally emailed The Only Sister and sent her links to the current top 4 or so (telling her to ignore the prices. That was between me and her mother.) I was careful to be very objective about it, and she unknowingly picked as her favorite the one the other three bridesmaids also liked.

Yay! That hurdle was crossed. So then I emailed the company asking the price of the dress in question. It was within the budgets of three people, so I told fourth person I'd just cover the extra cost because I didn't want to go through finding a dress everyone liked that was half the price.

So then I had to get everyone's measurements. Grace emailed me hers; Andrea submitted to being measured by Mom and I in turn (we wanted to make sure we got the measurements right). I emailed Emily and she said she had gotten her mom to take her measurements during her last visit home, so I should ask her mom. So I emailed Emily's mom, but then my mom said that Emily's mom never checks her email. So my mom sacrificed herself and called Emily's mom. They talked for an hour and a half. Fortunately, in the midst of all that chatter Mom at least remembered to get Emily's measurements. So then I emailed Mrs. Cobbler and asked her to take TOS' measurements. She did, and emailed me, about 12 hours before my self-imposed "order the dresses" deadline.

Oh, also? Pretty much everyone fit EXACTLY into a given size on one or more of their measurements. So then I had to email Grace and Emily again and ask if they wanted Size That Fits Exactly or One Size Up. They gave me their answers and I noted them down. (I ordered TOS One Size Up because she's 12. She's going to grow. I hope.)

So then I agonized over which shade of pale blue to order, and ended up deciding on cornflower. (I asked Mom and Grace and they both agreed that cornflower was closer to what I wanted than ice blue. I decided that a second and third opinions were good enough and didn't ask the other people, who had all agreed that blue in general is an acceptable color.)

So THEN I painstakingly filled out the order form and sent it off. I got sent a toll-free number to call, and called, and found out that the company doesn't open until 11 a.m. Utah time. So I had to call back that afternoon. After some more calling back and forth Mom finally gave them her credit card information, I assured them that I was sure of the sizes I wanted, and we waited for them to email us a receipt for Mom to sign.

48 hours later no receipt had appeared, so we called them and they resent it and then Mom printed it, signed it, scanned it, and sent it back. We were told to wait for a confirmation email.

Another day or two later, none had appeared, so I called AGAIN and mentioned this fact. Within a few hours a confirmation email appeared in my inbox.

So now we wait until mid-October. The end.

That wasn't a very quick take, was it?

3. Relatedly (but not in the same take because that take was starting to take over the world), Mom pointed out that since the bridesmaid dresses are going to have a white sash the bridesmaids really ought to wear white shoes. So once I'd had a little while to recover from the Ongoing Saga of Dress Ordering, I started communicating this fact to the bridesmaids. (Except Andrea; Mom just went to Wal-Mart and got her the same flats I have. Teresa has some little ones.) I Skyped Grace and she asked what shade of white. Me: "Umm...the white shade of white?" Grace took pity on my confusion and explained that she was asking because she owns white sandals and off-white flats. She didn't think the sandals would work for November in Ohio and was wondering if the flats would work with the dress. Since they won't, she's borrowing white flats from her mother. I don't know what Emily is doing, but she is aware of the need for white shoes. I was going to email TOS, but Mrs. Cobbler emailed me asking about it first. So I told her and she went to her local Wal-Mart and found that there were still a few pairs of the white flats on clearance.

I never knew until this year that there's apparently a famine of white shoes after Labor Day. Also, I thought about clothes and shoes more these past two months than the rest of my life combined. I hope I don't have to do so ever again.

4. Teresa has a flower girl dress. I will hound my mother for pictures shortly. (It came when I was out of town; otherwise I would have taken a picture myself.)

5. Scott and I met with the organist. It ended up being easier than I expected in some ways but harder in others. The organist said that in general the processional music is instrumental, so we picked some semi-random stuff for that. The offertory is apparently also instrumental during weddings. So we're letting her do her thing there. Then we picked the Pange Lingua for Communion. That was the one thing we were sure of going in. Then I told her I wanted the Agni Parthene for when we give flowers to Mary and she had of course never heard of it, but we ended up working it out such that if we find a vocalist who's willing to sing it they can just do so a capella. Otherwise we're just doing Ave Maria as a backup. Then we're doing Ode To Joy instrumental as a recessional.

Also, we were talking about the Sanctus and I asked, "Will that be in Latin or English?" and she said, "English," and I said, "Okay," but I must have sounded terribly disappointed because she backtracked and said we could do it in Latin if we wanted to. So we're having the Santus and the Agnus Dei in Latin. Yay!

I'm having a hard time keeping track of all these Mass parts, but I'm thinking the Psalm and the Memorial Acclamation are the only things that aren't going to be Latin, Greek, or instrumental. Apparently the organist is not actually too worried about there being a lot of singing. (Our Steubie friends would totally sing in Latin and Greek, though.)

6. We also met with our FOCCUS couple again. There were a few areas in which we didn't give the "preferred response" so we discussed those and explained our reasoning and the couple didn't seem to have a problem with anything. They're going to pass our results along to Father and he's going to do whatever. (We're meeting with him again on October 8.)

Here's something that's come up several times that I just don't get: "How will you divide holidays between your families?" I wouldn't say my family is necessarily low-key about the holidays, but neither side of my extended family is the kind to pitch a fit if you don't spend Christmas Day together. Growing up, we usually spent the weekend before Christmas with one grandmother and the weekend after with the other. (My one grandfather died before I was born; the other set of grandparents divorced when my mom was about 12 and Grandpa lived in Florida. We went to visit him whenever we went to Disney World.) We never traveled on Christmas Day. I'm pretty sure my mother would be offended if I DID try to visit on Christmas Day. Does that count as a family tradition that we need to incorporate into our new family unit?

So for now I've told Mom that Scott and I will come help decorate the tree on Gaudete Sunday. Then I can take all my ornaments and our spare fake Christmas tree home with me. >:) I'll have to ask Scott's mother what she thinks. Maybe I'll offer to visit for Mr. Cobbler's and/or Eldest Younger Brother's birthday. (Which are a few days before Christmas and a few days after respectively.)

7. Normally this is the part where I would list the things I still have left to do, but we're celebrating my dad's birthday tomorrow (his actual birthday is on Monday), so we've lots of baking to do now.

Not to mention I'm a bit tired of that since the other day I wrote Scott a 2-page single-spaced list of everything we still have left to do. (He made the mistake of asking what was left.) Maybe I'll post an edited-for-personal-info version of that sometime later.

Visit Jen for quick takes that are actually somewhat quick.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Has anybody missed me?

I'm good, but tired. It's been a busy couple of weeks. I'll try to put up a real post again soon.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Seven Quick Takes I am so out of it that I originally forgot to give this post a title edition

1. I feel like a really bad blogger lately. I have my reasons, but I still feel bad. See, I don't post little funny things midweek because I figure I should save them for Quick Takes, but then I have more things than takes, and also I don't like mixing wedding planning and other updates because I actually have a CATEGORY for these things and I don't want it filled with posts that are one sentence wedding and the rest cute things Teresa did.

2. I got the other six Harry Potter books from the library today. I've already finished Chamber of Secrets. I liked it. I feel like I should now hang my head in shame for surrendering to pop culture.

3. Scott has had this week off school (that's not wedding related, that's just Scott-related), and I thought, "Great! I'll be able to go to bed by 11 every night because he won't be out late at class!"

Nope. I've been up till 11:30 or 12 every night this week, talking. Not even about wedding stuff some nights, just talking because we miss each other. :(

4. Teresa told a ghost story to Tammy this morning. I don't remember any of it except the part where Teresa used detailed hand gestures to indicate that the ghost took bad dreams out of his head and put them in Tammy's head, and then took nice dreams out of her head and put them in his own head. (I think this is related to the time I was trying to watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer on Netflix and had to pause it for probably 10 minutes while Teresa demanded explanations of why she couldn't watch it. ["I won't be scared!"] Part of that explanation was that it might give her bad dreams, and she looked in shock at the vampire on the screen and said, "He might take good dreams outta my head and put bad ones in?")

5. The cats' unofficial birthday is September 6. (They were born sometime in the first week or so of September, way back in 2002. They're getting pretty up there for cats.) Teresa decided randomly the other day that we NEEDED to have a birthday party for them.

So we bought a new package of jingly balls, a new cat carrier (they've only had one all these years that they have to share when they go to the vet; we finally decided to get a second one), two cans of wet cat food (normally they eat dry), some cat treats, a box of devil's food cake mix, and a tub of frosting. The last two things are for the humans to enjoy on the cats' behalf.

Anybody who points out that there are children starving in Africa while we're having a birthday party for our cats will get spammed with 150 links to Swistle's post on The Giant Internet Hand of Spanking.

6. I just went to my Facebook profile to see if I could think of anything else worth posting and found this gem:
Teresa: "Kuh, kuh, k starts with kitchen!" She attempts to put a magnetic K on her wooden toy fridge. "Muh, muh, m starts with...what's this thing?" Me: "Microwave." Teresa: "Microwave!" I think it's hilarious that she apparently knew what letter "microwave" starts with, but couldn't remember the whole word.
and this:
More adventures with letters: Teresa couldn't find anything that began with N, so she made me pretend to take a nap.
and this too:
Teresa told a story to Tammy that went something like this: We bought you at a pet shop. And then a pink dragon came and tried to steal you. And then a beautiful prince came and chopped the dragon up and we all had a piece to eat. And we had fun and a party. The end.
7. We don't have any cookies or anything in the house, so today for my dessert I cut up some strawberries and put Cool Whip and chocolate syrup on them. It was awesome.

Go visit Conversion Diary for more Quick Takes.