Monday, March 29, 2010

Invite musings

First of all, Go read this! Meg over at A Practical Wedding asked for reader input on self-catering weddings, and I wrote up my experiences helping Scott's aunt in the kitchen for her wedding. Never dreamed any of my advice would be useful enough to make it onto the blog, but there you have it. I'm feeling this neat little kind of's kind of akin to seeing my name in the newspaper. It's more exciting than a newspaper because it's actually words I've written (which I've only seen in print before when I wrote a letter to the editor about how horribly arts are represented in schools), but less exciting because it isn't a tangible thing that everyone I know will read (which is the case with my local paper) so all in all, it evens out to about the same level of excitement as seeing the old "with Mandy ____ playing so-and-so in such-and-such play".

So. On to the main topic of my post, which is invitations. Because tonight, I had an interesting thought. Now, let me preface this by saying I in no way intend to do this. I never rebel against the norm merely for the sake of being different; I just do things the way I like, and if that happens to be out of the ordinary, then fine. If it happens to be exactly what everyone else does, that's fine, too. However, I do understand that some things have a social importance attached to them that is legitimate and not just made up by the WIC. Now, with all that out of the way, this was the thought I had:

Why send invitations at all?

This is just my own personal life, but honestly...I really do believe that if we just sent out a big Facebook announcement and made the effort to call a few relatives who are not tech-savvy, we could skip invites all together. My way of thinking is this: if people really care about coming to our wedding, they will want to know when and where it is, and they will find out. People have already asked us the date and location a hundred times. We're getting married in a place where a really huge chunk of my friends spend most of their time anyway, at least during the summer show season. We have a few out-of-town friends coming in, but honestly...not that many, that I know of. Scott's family is sort of out-of-town, but they're only an hour away, so as long as we sent them directions, they could find it.

I know this wouldn't really work for us for a number of reasons. For one thing, we're going to HAVE to have RSVP cards to find out how many people are actually coming. For another thing, too many people in both our families would be royally offended if they didn't receive an actual invitation. But man, wouldn't it be NICE? Because honestly, I'm not even picky about who comes to the wedding. There are certain people I definitely want there, but for the most part, I'm already telling people, "Yeah, the amphitheatre seats at least 400, we'll probably just see who all shows up and then if we run out of cake, we run out of cake."

I really don't like the idea of invitations. I know some people love them, and love making them all cool and artsy and personal, but...I've never been big on them. When I graduated college, I bought my announcements for a total of $0.52. That was the total price for fifty announcements, no joke, because I found them on a forgotten top shelf at Staples and they were THAT far clearanced. The clerk who rang them up was totally shocked when the price rang up. Were they pretty? No. Were they exactly what I would have picked if price weren't a factor? No. Did they serve the purpose I wanted them to serve? YES.

Really, though, I know I'm going to print up some kind of wedding invitation, but...I'm beginning to wonder, is it viable to actually invite some of my more tech-savvy, less traditional friends via Facebook? Some of them might actually appreciate the fact that I didnt' waste any paper on them. After all, everything in my wonderful town is trying to go green and be eco-friendly.

I'm really tempted to do this now. Why waste stamps on people who check their Facebook more often than their snail-mail? Anyone have any thoughts on this?

And now, for a special treat (to myself, mostly) since I've got the amphitheatre on my mind and since I've had a pretty awesome day, here are some pictures of me onstage at the place we're getting married. This is also pretty relevant to this blog because I'm hoping the guy that shot all these photos will also shoot our wedding...if he ever gets back to me. I know where he lives, I'm gonna have to go beat on his door one day. I stole these off Facebook, but William Lawrence gets all the credit for shooting them.

I guess this photo is technically the FIRST time I got married on the amphitheatre stage: that's me as Hermia, another Scott (not my fiance) as Lysander, and Hamilton as Egeus, my father, giving me away!

One of my lovely bridesmaids as Helena and me as Hermia in the middle of our epic catfight onstage. My face looks so funny. I love it.

A much calmer shot of the two of us, and one of my favorite images of all the promotional ones that were taken.

And now, last but not least, possibly one of my favorite pictures ever, ever taken of me.....

As SOON as we all first saw this picture, the other Scott cried out, "THIS IS SPARTA!!!" and now no one can see it without yelling that. Including me. This picture is so not a pretty picture of me, but it makes me so darn happy every time I see it.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Six months

So you know how I was all kerfuddled about my own indecisiveness to pick a real, official wedding date?

Well. While reading my friend's blog entry (hi Ali!) about how she's going to be in Korea for another six months, it suddenly hit me that six months from today, my boy and I will be married. And somehow, that realization made everything okay.

I think it helped that today seemed like a very eventful day, in a lot of good ways, and getting married six months from such a good day has to be a good thing.

Things that happened today:

- My mom got to come home from the hospital (she'd been in there since last Friday with a blood clot).

- Because the other preschool teacher had car trouble and never made it in today, I learned that I can successfully take care of 11 children singlehandedly. This includes 6 toddlers in diapers, and only 2 children total that I could trust enough to say "You there - watch the door, come tell me if anyone tries to go out in the hall while I'm getting paper towels."

- My nephew turned 6. He still hasn't fully committed to being our ring-bearer, but I don't think he quite understands what he's agreeing to yet. But today I gave him some awesome soft comfy grey dress pants to wear if he does decide, and I told him that I will make him a penguin pillow to carry down the aisle if he wants one (he's way into penguins right now and every present he opened had at least one penguin-related thing in it). If he's over penguins by then, I'll make him whatever kind of pillow he wants, because I have no interest in my wonderfully spunky nephew carrying some silly satin pillow down the aisle. Why would a 6 year old boy want a satin pillow? He's gettin' something COOL.

- My nephew's birthday is also kind of significant because, although it isn't the EXACT day by any means, I know for a fact that right around this time six years ago was when I first fell head-over-heels for Scott. I remember because I was crocheting a baby blanket for Jake right before he was born, and I was working on it during rehearsals for The Beggar's Opera, and it was during those rehearsals that I first realized I was completely in love with this blue-eyed man.

- My cousin's fiance's brother's daughter (hehe, this is how my family works) is selling her car, and I test drove it today. It's in awesome shape, it's perfect for me, and it's exactly what I wanted to pay for a car. Considering I've been badly in need of a new car for some time, this is great news.

- Something that didn't actually happen today, is Richard O'Brien's birthday, AND it was 5 year ago today that I saw my very first shadowcast production of RHPS. Which led to a very big, interesting, and fun chapter of my life, as well as a relationship that was ultimately wrong, but I'm still happy I experienced and have kept a good friend from.

- I had Thai curry cashews, and they were awesome. Okay, that might be stretching my "good things that happened today" list, was a good thing. I love food.

So. Long story short (too late!), all of these things tying together somehow made me feel like we made the right decision. And it's exciting to think that exactly six months from today, we will have a new little family all our own, and I'll be moving in with my new husband.

...and, I kid you not, I just got so excited about all of this that I clapped my hands. Briefly, but loudly. In a house where everyone else has been sleeping for at least an hour. Oops.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Indecisiveness and certainty

People keep asking me when the date is. I keep telling them September 25th, but for some reason, no matter what I do...I end up adding, "At least, that's what we're planning on." Even though we decided on the 25th, even though I was the first one to suggest it...for some reason I have such a hard time giving people a real, definite answer. And I can't quite figure out why. And that bothers me.

Are we picking the wrong date? It took us forever to pick this one, and now that it's picked, I can't make myself settle on it. Am I just putting too much stock in "the day that will become our anniversary forever and always"? Am I actually feeling this hesitation because God is trying to send me some kind of signal that we should have gone with the 18th, instead? Heck, am I just leaning towards the 18th because it's the birthday of someone who used to be a good friend of mine, and therefore I already have that date stuck in my brain as a special occasion? Or, in the end, does this all tie back to the fact that I dislike planning things so far in advance, so having a definitive date seems weird to me?

I don't know the answer. I wish I did. Maybe it's a combination of several of these things, or other things entirely. One thing I know for do certain is that my hesitation in picking a date has nothing to do with my desire to get married. Because honestly, if it weren't for the fact that we actually do want a wedding...I would traipse on over to the courthouse tomorrow to get that piece of paper signed.

I remember I had an English teacher once, a really sweet, smiling, plump little woman, and for some reason in class one day (I forget the context), she said to us, "Well, so-and-so isn't the best man in the world. I married the best man in the world...sorry, girls!" and we all laughed and 'aww'ed and thought it was absolutely adorable that she loved her husband so much and was so damn cute about it. I thought, "Man, I want to love someone like that." And now I do. Because no matter what anyone else may say or think about other men, I know absolutely for certain that I'm marrying the best man in the whole world. Of course, everyone else is entitled to their own opinions, but nothing is ever gonna convince me otherwise.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


For some reason, I keep thinking that we can just put on a wedding for free. And I KNOW this isn't really possible for the wedding that we want to have, but...ugh, why do things have to cost money? Why can't everything be on a barter system? I make really good jam, and apple pies, and I can sew pretty dresses like nobody's business. Surely someone will donate all the food for our wedding if I promise to make them a sundress. Right?

Oh well. There isn't really much to update today, since no more decisions have been made. Scott keeps telling me that we need to pick a rain location, and I keep saying, "...but WHY? Can't we just tell everyone to bring umbrellas?". He's more worried about the food getting rained on. I almost want to just make paper-bag lunches for everyone, and if it rains, they can go eat in their cars.

I really need to contact the managing director of MPP and make sure we can have, the date we've picked. And we need to tell Scott's parents where we want to go on our honeymoon, since they're determined to send us. And we need to decide whether or not we're going to audition for Twelfth Night, which is the show going on at the ampthitheatre the night after we get married. Everyone has told me I'm insane for even considering such a thing, but...well, I don't always follow advice. It's not that I'm stubborn, really. It's just that I already KNOW I'm crazy, so when someone tells me I'd be crazy to do kind of just makes me want to do it more.

Besides, we could do the show Saturday and Sunday nights, then leave for our honeymoon Monday morning and be back by Friday afternoon for closing weekend. I mean, we can't exactly go on a honeymoon for any longer than that, anyway. We're starving actors. There's no WAY the both of us could take more than a week off work.

They may be right. I may be crazy. But...I haven't actually acted in a show since June. JUNE. Well, I mean, I was in The Songs, which was kind of a musical revue/cabaret type thing, but other than that, I've been busy directing and costuming shows. I should actually STICK to directing and costuming, since those things pay, but...but...ARG, I need to act. And auditions at Parkway last weekend were a trainwreck, so that option is out, and...I'm gonna shut up, because this is supposed to be a wedding blog, and this is mostly unweddinglike rambling.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


So far, my unofficial poll on Facebook is showing anywhere from 3-9 inches of snow on the ground across WNC. And it's still snowing at my house. work this morning. This afternoon remains to be seen; we might still have Aristocats rehearsal for the kiddies.

I don't normally tout specific products on this blog, because honestly, I think the wedding industry in general does enough to make people feel like "OMG YOU HAVE TO HAVE THIS THIS AND THIS!!!!" in a wedding. For the record, I am so, so happy I found cool wedding blogs and websites that said, "Hey, you don't have to have Save-The-Dates and favors. Those are actually really new "traditions" that most people have never heard of. So chill." And when you stop and think about it, those things AREN'T really traditional. I guarantee only three groups of people have even heard of Save-The-Dates: 1) Engaged people 2) Recently married people or 3) People in the wedding business. Favors aren't traditional, either: they're a new phenomenon. Twenty years ago, no one would have considered giving their guests an extra little present just for coming - you're already feeding them and inviting them to share your commitment together. part of the reason why we aren't doing Save-The-Dates or favors. Granted, if people LIKE those things, they should have them. We just decided they were more trouble than they were worth.

Now that I've said all that...I did end up looking at Favor Days after following a link on a website. And I have to say, if you're a person who really wants favors at your wedding...they've got some pretty cute stuff. My favorites?

Kissing Fish - Normally, I really hate the idea of salt & pepper shaker favors. I mean, people already have salt & pepper shakers that match their own decor - why would you bother giving them something they have no use for? But these caught my eye because...well, they're little kissing fish. Our nicknames for each other are Sparklefish and Pistolfish.

Cupcake towels - Okay, I'll admit. I've had a fascination with those tiny, rolled-up towel things ever since I was a child and my brother's girlfriend brought me one back from her vacation. I was absolutely amazed that a tiny, hard little square could be placed in water and become a towel. Now, these favors aren't exactly that - from what I can see, the washcloths are just rolled up very very small and put in a paper wrapper, so there's no cool magical water unfurling that happens. But still. They're pretty darn cute, and everyone can use a washcloth.

Bamboo Coasters - Once again, something almost everyone could use. That's a big selling point for me: lots of favors can be cute, but how many of them are actually useful things to send home with your guests? These little coasters seem useful, AND they're eco-friendly. And, continuing with the eco-friendly theme...

Plantable Card Favors - I love these. They're useful, they're affordable, and they bring a little bit more beauty into the world. Plus, these are favors I would be happy to take home with me if there were leftovers - you can never have too many wildflowers. There are lots of different options, I just linked to the cheapest ones.

And one more, along the same lines as the plantable cards: Plantable Confetti. This is something I'm seriously considering ordering, actually. For a while now, I've loved the idea as throwing wildflower seeds instead of blowing bubbles or throwing birdseed...but this is so much cooler! It's all the pretty show of confeteti, but with the same "let's plant flowers" benefit of throwing seeds! Unfortunately, I'll have to find out if there's a good place we can do this. We're getting married at Montford, and while it is an outdoor theatre complete with flowers and weeds, I'm not sure how people would feel about semi-intentionally planting wildflowers. Plus, they'd probably just get mowed down. But still. Way cool idea.

Like I said, we don't really plan on favors. But if it does end up being in the budget...there are some I'd like to have, necessary or not. I really don't plan on buying enough for everyone. I've seen how many favors go to waste at weddings. People don't want them or forget them. I'm considering ordering around a dozen each of two or three different types of favors, then just scattering them among the tables and see what people want to take home.

So, what does everyone else think? Favors or no favors? Order enough for each and every guest, or just order as many as you think will be taken home? Practical or just plain cute?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

What We Have So Far

So, since I have the morning (possibly the whole day) off due to snow, I decided to write out what all we actually have semi-planned for the wedding, as well as ideas of what might be planned. I'm doing it on this blog because if I just make a list to myself, I'll forget about it. Feedback and helpful suggestions are welcome, as long as it doesn't involve the phrase, "You can't do that because it isn't done at weddings".

Hazel Robinson Amphitheatre. Rain or shine, at this point. We're just going to warn people to bring umbrellas.

Date: September 25th. This is still unofficial, which Scott keeps harping on me for because he needs to tell his mother something definitive...for some reason I just can't bring myself to say, "YES, THAT is the day we will get married." I think the problem is I just don't like to plan things this far in advance - not because I have doubts, but because I'm just impulsive enough to want to wait until, say, July to nail down a real date.

Time: I'm torn on this. I kind of want to have an 11 a.m. wedding so we have plenty of time to have fun before we have to clean up and make room for that night's show. At the same time, I'd rather get married at 1:00 so it's after lunch and we have the morning to set up. Will two hours make that much difference? Can we start at 1, have a fifteen minute ceremony, take fifteen minutes to setup the reception, and party from 1:30-5:00 before we have to pack up and leave? I would think three hours would be enough time for a reception, based on the weddings I've attended, but you never know.

Attire: I'm making my dress, as stated before. At this point, I'm leaning more and more towards having my bridesmaids' dresses made, too. I have three bridesmaids, and three seamstresses I know have volunteered to make the dresses as a wedding present as I choose. And one of those seamstresses is the mother of one of my bridesmaids, so...yeah. The men will just be asked to wear suits. It seems ridiculous to rent a tux for a wedding, especially a low-key wedding in an outdoor theatre. We're still shopping for a new suit for Scott, though - his old one has been through the wringer and he deserves a new one for our wedding day. And by "new", we are also looking at used suits in good shape.

Food: At this point, we're kind of on the fence. I originally was really set on making the food ourselves. I mean, not just me and Scott alone; we'd enlist the help of various friends and relatives who have all said they'd happily volunteer. This might still happen. However, we seem to be saving a ton of money on all our other choices. The more money we save, the better - I don't feel like we HAVE to splurge on anything if we don't want to. Still, we're considering catering as our splurge.

Alcohol: We're not serving alcohol at the wedding because neither of our families drink. However, we ARE considering opening it up for people to BYOB. This is one of the few things I'm actually concerned about people's reaction to - is it totally rude to tell people they have to bring their own alcohol to a wedding if they want to drink? Or would they prefer bringing their own to not having any alcohol at all? We might still end up nixing that - after all, my parents are chipping in, and they may be uncomfortable with having alcohol openly drunk at the reception. However, I'm saying here and now that anyone is welcome to bring a hip flask to drink in the corner. ;-)

Reception: This will probably get a post of its own later, but for now, here's what we're thinking. The tables will already be set up backstage. After the ceremony, they'll be brought out. There won't really be tables for people to sit at - they can get their food and bring it back to their audience seats, or they can eat as they stand (we're doing finger foods) and mingle around. The stage will be the "dance floor". Of course, we have a few relatives who just can't make it up and down the amphitheatre tiers, and that concerns me. I don't know whether to just leave them out in the audience and bring their food to them, or arrange a couple special tables for them onstage. Speaking of tables, that's one thing I know we'll probably have to rent - the tables and chairs. Unless I can talk Montford, the Arts Center, and probably one other place of business into loaning me a bunch of folding tables.