Friday, January 30, 2009

step right up!

erin and jared's outdoor, circus-themed wedding looks like it was an event not to be missed! i know this wedding has been posted all over, but that doesn't take away the fact that it has a perfect feeling to it. the bride and groom look so happy. the guests look like are actually enjoying themselves. love is definitely in the air.
besides this wedding being freaking awesome - i love how erin embodies the new image of the diy bride. in the past [or to some people still] a bride in green with tattoos was major taboo and i'm glad that those ideas are a thing of the past. she just glows and the wedding is truly a celebration about her and jared. and while i'm talking about the bride's attire, i also need to note that the groom's suit is super sharp!
and of course, the best picture for last. so cute!
[all images via rachel aka merge wedding's flickr]

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


in my opinion, every girl [and guy for that matter] is entitled to have a crush outside of their spouse (now that doesn't mean on your guy's best friend or brother or acquaintance). it's always safer when it's a celebrity or someone that you'll never cross paths with, for obvious reasons. well, for jason, i think it's safe to say that he never has to worry about my all time crush sadly.

for those of you who aren't familiar with bill hicks - you should be. i was introduced to his comedy by my great friend bari and i was immediately hooked. after reading various biographies and listening to and watching his skits repeatedly, i fell in love with his progressive ideas and his timeless jokes/ lessons.

this has all come up because on friday (january 30th) bill hick's mother will be on david letterman and they will play the infamous skit that never aired due to controversy surrounding the comedy material (long story). this is HUGE! bill hicks died shortly after the filming for this bit on letterman from pancreatic cancer at the [very] young age of 32. he was a timeless and very inspirational comedian who sought not only to make people laugh, but to educate and inform them. he is very dearly missed but his imprint on comedy will last always.

and if he was still alive, he'd definitely give jason a run for his money (even if he still had the mullet) - just kidding...kind of. ;) anyways, make sure you tune in on friday! you won't regret it! also, check out for more info!

"the world is like a ride at an amusement park. it goes up and down and round and round. it has thrills and chills and it's very brightly coloured and it's very loud and it's fun, for a while. some people have been on the ride for a long time, and they begin to question: is this real, or is this just a ride? and other people have remembered, and they come back to us, they say, "hey – don't worry, don't be afraid, ever, because, this is just a ride ..." and we ... kill those people. ha ha, "shut him up. we have a lot invested in this ride. shut him up. look at my furrows of worry. look at my big bank account and my family. this just has to be real." it's just a ride. but we always kill those good guys who try and tell us that, you ever notice that? and let the demons run amok. jesus murdered; martin luther king murdered; malcom x murdered; gandhi murdered; john lennon murdered; reagan ... wounded. but it doesn't matter because: it's just a ride. and we can change it anytime we want. it's only a choice. no effort, no work, no job, no savings and money. a choice, right now, between fear and love. the eyes of fear want you to put bigger locks on your doors, buy guns, close yourself off. the eyes of love, instead, see all of us as one. here's what we can do to change the world, right now, to a better ride. take all that money that we spend on weapons and defenses each year and instead spend it feeding and clothing and educating the poor of the world, which it would many times over, not one human being excluded, and we could explore space, together, both inner and outer, forever, in peace." -bill hicks

i do


so i want to apologize for my negative nicole post on monday. i was still recovering from the reclusive week before. i also want to say i'm sorry to jason [not that he reads this] but i left out the most important things that get me through the hard times: j's undying support, his ability to make me laugh always, his hugs and kisses, and his unconditional love. i feel so lucky to get to marry him.

in the meantime, i feel so lucky to be a (very-soon-to-be) homeowner with him!!! in other words - we got the house!!! we have the inspection tomorrow so we're still keeping our fingers crossed that it all goes well, but we couldn't be happier! i will post pictures eventually i promise!

now we'll actually have a better idea of what we need to register for!

we are registered at target, bb&b, and will probably register at macy's sometime in the future. we registered for like 3 things right after we got engaged and my dad still keeps bugging me to register for more because some of his friends still want to get us engagement gifts (even though we got engaged last may) - it's crazy! i wanted to register for a tent immediately, but my parents said that gifts like a tent aren't appropriate for a wedding registry. i didn't realize there were guidelines to registering for wedding gifts. it seems like you should be able to register for anything that will help build your new life together! either way, we were able to compromise, because i won a tent off of a giveaway and my dad didn't have to see a tent on our registry!

i know so many people dream about getting to register for gifts - i mean who doesn't love free gifts, right? well for some reason, it is a thorn in my side. i'll do it, but it still just feels so early still. the truth is, if there's something i really want - i'd just assume go get it now myself. we did create (it's not finished) an website so that we could pick a charity and have a percentage of the gifts' costs given to help a cause we believe in so that should be awesome.

i'm hoping this new house will help inspire us and i'm sure we'll find out there are tons of things we just need. ok, well not need, but would really like!

was there anything that helped get you motivated to register? also, what was the craziest/ least-traditional thing you registered for?

Monday, January 26, 2009




when i first started planning my wedding, i kept envisioning mason jars with wild flowers on every table. mason jars and farm weddings go hand-in-hand, right? my tastes have changed slightly, but only in the sense that now i want mason jars and various glass jars. i have started collecting a random assortment of glass bottles from thrift stores and flea markets despite j's dissatisfaction with having them all over the apartment. i keep assuring him that after the wedding, i will make sure to donate them or give them away to help him sleep better.

we haven't fully decided on the flowers, but i'm leaning towards ranunculus, dahlias, calla lillies, wax flowers, and craspedia. regardless of the flowers, we are looking for timeless simplicity with a personal touch.

speaking of personal touches, i am sure you have all seen jesse and deanna's fabulous diy wedding, but their wedding turned out so beautiful and they are the cutest couple! and the invitations, favors, and birds are awesome.








[all images via]

happy birthday little buddy

[card via]

just kidding! however the past week was very long and heart-wrenching. i won't go too much into it since it's now a new week and time for smiles and joy [at least i'm going to try my best to make it that way]. and i feel so grateful to be able to say that last tuesday's inauguration was probably the best and most inspiring event that really helped me to stay positive and serene. sadly some family sorrows occured and everything has been turned upside down; however, i have always been a huge believer in perfect balance and i know that everything will work itself out for the better in the end.

also, i've been keeping a very large secret. j and i have been house hunting and we found a house! we have been negoiating with the family that owns the house and hopefully we'll be able to all agree on a price soon. with all of the counteroffers last week, i felt very devastated (i know, i have broken the cardinal rule and fallen for the house - so shoot me), but j and i have worked out every number in our budget and may get some monetary wedding gifts early so we're keeping our fingers crossed that it all works out. regardless of what happens, i am finally at peace with whatever the outcome is.

anyways, moral of the story is that there have been many things that have sadly pushed the thoughts of wedding planning to the back of my head for the past week; however, we did meet with 2 different catering options yesterday which has helped spark motivation to get back on track! the two different companies we met with could not be at complete opposite ends of the spectrum! the first company sat down with us for 2 hours and talked about everything involved in the wedding which was great, but i can tell the price tag is going to be huge. the second company was so laid back and other than the food, they are not involved in anything else. i will say that their prices seemed pretty high considering how laid back they were. now if we could only find a cater with medium involvement and a lower price. you would think having all vegetarian options would help cut costs, but apparently not...

...when meeting with caters or planning your wedding, what resources did you use to cut back on catering costs? any suggestions would be wonderfully appreciated!

and before i go, and most importantly, today is my niece [and future flower girl] natalie's 4th birthday! happy birthday sweet baby!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

let the games begin!

i am so excited for our weekend wedding celebration. there will be more time for each other, catching up with family and friends, and fun!

j and i have always thought that the main focus of our wedding would be that our guests have a great rockin time. during the cocktail hour and reception, we're going to have tons of games set up for everyone to play!

some essentials:
ladder ball/ bollo or whatever you call it!
[image via lightstamp's flickr]

[all other images via saladito's flickr]

by the way, if you've never checked out zach and leann's wedding on saladito's flickr account you are really missing out! this wedding has been super inspirational for me and has such a wonderful, peaceful, and blissful feel.

see what i mean? enjoy!


when i told my dad that i didn't want [moreso need] a wedding planner he was shocked. dialogue went as follows:

dad: you need a wedding planner.
me: no dad, i'll be fine.
dad: there's no way you can do it all yourself. it's just too much.
me: dad, i promise that it'll all be great. trust me, there are so many helpful resources to help me out there.
dad: ok, if you say so, but it's too much for me to even think about.
me: take a deeep breath dad.

ok so maybe that's not verbatim, but it's pretty dang close. and of course when i say resources i mean: family, friends, and the lovely internet.

oh family. they love you unconditionally and therefore get majorally sucked in to helping with the wedding. haha. just kidding! since my extended family is made up of all ladies there are definitely very many brains and hands to help! decorations, flowers, invitations, cakes (see "variety" post), etc.

friends. i have so many great friends who have offered to help me on anything at all. you better believe i will take them up on it as soon as i get there. i know i need to delegate, but most days i need help with just the delegation part, let alone the actual ideas! go figure...

the internet. the trusty companion for inspiration and how to's. whether it's a major wedding site (i.e., martha, the knot, etc.), a blog, or just flickr - there is a plethora of information at your fingertips! i recently found the wedding style download site and it is awesome! let me show you (that is if you haven't already discovered this internet wedding gem already):

you may be wondering what these pictures have to do with diy, but if you go to the link you'll get loads of free downloadable templates for drink labels, bridal party games, game signs, recipe cards, invitations, etc. i think there's something available for everyone's wedding here (whether it's the wedding, rehearsal, or a shower). hope you enjoy! and in case you're wondering - issue 7's "little bit country" is my favorite. shocked?

[all images via wedding style ]


[images via]

those colors. that couple. the dress. the leaves. sigh...

"autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower" - albert camus

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

a bit of variety

i have never wanted a fancy wedding cake. truth be told, i never wanted a traditional wedding cake at all. i've always tried my best to live simply and i felt like it should transpire to all aspects of the wedding, but especially the cake. so here's the plan:
[image via]


[image via]

j and i felt like this option would be best because it gives everyone a different option of flavor, we can have some vegan selections, and it's so cute! ok, well maybe that last part is mostly my opinion - ha. and while i'm confessing things, i guess i should also admit that building a collection of cake stands also makes the multiple cakes idea sound a little bit sweeter!

i also thought it would be great to have our relatives each make their "infamous" desserts so we could have some of the desserts we both grew up loving. for instance, my great aunt makes the best strawberry shortcake east of the mississippi. j's aunt makes killer pound "puppy" (j used to call it that when he was little - how cute!) cake. j's mom makes amazing pies [at least so i've heard, because as delicious as they look...i don't like pies sadly]. anyways, suffice it to say we'd be well covered!

and of course to complicate things, we also love the cupcake possibility. hmm - i guess we have time to make up our minds [and then change them many times too] before our wedding.
[image via happiness in a bite]

hmm - we could always do both...even if we did one at the reception and one at the rehearsal dinner. ok, enough about cake cause it's no good to talk about cake while you're trying to lose weight!


[image via]

how have i already let a week go by without updating this thing! it has been a very hectic week and i just now finally feel like i can breathe a bit.

some exciting things have been happening lately! i haven't mentioned that j and i are trying to buy a house! we've been looking for a little over a month and it's been a bit discouraging, but we now have a favorite but it's out of our price range so we've been trying to figure out a budget. i think we're going to try to make an offer, because it's better to at least try than to never try at all [and always wonder what could have happened]. there are 1 or 2 others that would do, but they don't come close to the one. so fingers crossed...

in other wonderful news, we have officially booked our photographer! we signed the contract last night and put down the first deposit yesterday and we could not be any happier! the wonderful matt miller will be shooting our wedding next october and it's going to be a blast! please check out some of matt's amazing work!

[images via matt miller at or]

cheers! xo

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

barefoot in the kitchen

for j's birthday, i got him the book :"Be the Change You Want to See in the World. 365 Things You Can Do for Yourself and Your Planet" written by Julie Fisher-McGarry.

there is an entry for every day of the year with various inspirational quotes, vegetarian recipes, tips, and more! so far we have both really enjoyed this book! for today the entry is a costa rican black bean soup recipe and i'm so excited to eat it! we've got about 30 minutes left to go! i'm also making some vegan jalapeno cornbread to go with it. yummmy.

i should mention that this is the first time i've ever made dried back beans. i'm super embarrassed to tell you that; however, better late than never. after becoming vegetarian in october of 2007, black beans became an consistent staple in our diets. i had always been so accustomed to canned black beans; however, i am trying to get away from as much canned and processed food as possible! the sodium alone is bad enough, let alone all of the products that you can't pronounce! although the dried black beans are much more of an effort - the health benefits are worth it. i hope i can say the same about the taste!

anyways, if you're looking for a great book to keep you motivated for 2009, please read this book! and if you're looking for a black bean soup recipe, just email me and i'll send it over!

the list

to follow the trend, i've decided to determine how many of the below items i have successful fulfilled. i took this from bel's blog!

anything that is italicized has been completed!
1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland - i've been to Disneyworld?
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty - going down was horrifying for me!
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted - someone sketched my portrait once when i was a hostess at a restaurant and i didn't know until they gave it to me when they left! weird!
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason - on Monday!!! <3>64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma.
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Kissed a stranger at midnight on New Year's Eve
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee

great - now i even have more to add to my "to do" list! just when i thought you couldn't add anything else...

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

walk at home

like 99% of the population (especially girls getting married this year) i have made the resolution to get healthy and in shape. and by saying i want to be in shape, i'm really just trying to make the fact that i need to lose weight sound better! so anyways, i have started keeping a food journal to help monitor what i'm eating (based on the weight watchers system). i am also trying to train to run a 5K (another resolution!) this year. i also need to get back into the routine of going to my ymca gym. sadly, there were numerous times in 2008 that i was really getting in shape and felt wonderful, but i would get comfortable with my weight, my weight would stabilize temporarily, and then before i knew it all efforts had been lost. so this year my goal is not to diet, but to revolutionize my lifestyle when it comes to working out and eating properly.

to help me acheive this objective, i will be taking advantage of the following things:
1. the ymca's "coach approach" - an exercise support process designed to teach new and returning members how to start and stick with their exercise program.

2. classes at the ymca -with a focus on yoga (another resolution! yessss!)

3. the outdoors - enough said.

4. leslie sansone's walk at home video - i know what you're thinking - walking at home? walking indoors? i was a skeptic too, but after my [super skinny] best friend kept insisting that this video was an intense workout, i figured that i would give it a shot. to my surprise, by the end of the 4th mile, i was sweating bullets and completely worn out due to a great, low impact workout! i would definitely recommend this for those days when it's ugly outside or you can't get motivated to go to the gym. the best part about the below video is that you can do all 4 miles when you want a longer/ more intense workout (the video even includes a fitness band that is used during the 4th mile); however, if you aren't wanting to really exert yourself one day, you can only do 1 mile! 1 mile is better than no miles, right?

are there any specific workouts or exercises that have really helped you reach/ maintain your weight goals? if so, please share!

second guesses

this new orleans wedding is absolutely stunning. i am this close to making our wedding a new orleans destination celebration...well not really, but this wedding makes it so tempting. hope you enjoy the fantastic eye candy as much as i did. i love the veil and bicycle ribbons! since we will be staying at the b&b after the wedding there will not be a formal exit; however, if we had an exit, hands down it would have to be a tandem bicycle!
have you seen a more beautiful bride? happiness just radiates from the bride and groom.

j has never been to new orleans and i know he'd absolutely love it. maybe we'll try to make it down there sometime this year, because after seeing this wedding i feel like a walk in the french quarter and a beignet at cafe du monde are in order!

[images by]