1 Year Anniversary

June 24, 2012

 Today is the day before our anniversary, which is officially Monday.  Except that Monday I’m heading up to Grand Prairie for the entire day, leaving the house before 5 am, getting home closer to midnight all day.  To celebrate we went out for brunch, which is our speed these days.  Still enough of a treat since we don’t go out to eat much these days, and Althea has a great time eating and people watching.  Today she ate a waffle, bits of our breakfasts, fruit and more fruit, and the highlight, drinking out of the straw from Mummy’s orange juice.  She doesn’t get juice at all, so that is a big, big treat.  (She loves water, so why not just give that to her all the time).  (And milk, she still loves her Mummy’s milk).

Looking back to last year, I still loved the photo part of our wedding, just Mr. J and I out having a nice time away from all the problems with organizing a wedding.  Away from relatives desperately trying to ruin the day.  I did love spending time with my dear, dear friends, but really could have not done the family mean comments/complaining parts.  Our photos took a few months to get to us, due to mix ups, but I love the end result.  The two of us together, our great outfits, my hair pouffy thing, lots of kissing and staring into each other eyes.  Our little baby safe and asleep (finally) in her car seat.

  Today we exchanged virtual cards (since we both haven’t had time to get real ones) and agreed neither of us is giving up yet.  We’ll check in again next year.

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Bachelorette Tea Party

August 12, 2011

Going way back now to before the wedding.  I’ve been meaning to tell you about this for awhile, but just never seemed to find the time!  (In other exciting news, not only is Althea putting herself to sleep at night, she napped in the crib this week for Daddy!).  I had the idea sometime last year that I wanted to do something “bachlorettey” but that with nursing Althea, that something just couldn’t include a wild party with lots of crazy shots, or any alcohol really.  Plus I think my days of dancing on the table at Elvis’s in Singapore, while it was super fun at the time, are over.  I don’t want to go out for boozy evenings anymore, which take days to recover from, I may just be too old.  (Right now I’m taking a minute to remember some of those boozy evenings, and while some were a bit out of control, some were indeed SUPER FUN).  Besides, most of my friends that I wanted to invite just aren’t big drinkers, or interested in boozy nights either.  Also, I don’t have much interest in having any “entertainment” of the scantilly clad male variety, other than my now husband.  Truly.  Okay, there are exceptions, but Mr. J is well aware of them.  (Alex Skarsgard, that one is for you).  But Tea!  We all like tea, and tea parties are fun.  Another thing that is really fun is pastry!  Yummy yummy pastry, of extremely good quality. 

 I began the search to find the best quality pastry in Calgary, which wasn’t easy I tell you.  I had to go to many, many pastry shops, and sample many, many pastries.  I finally decided that our local Belgium pastry maker, Manuel Latruwe just couldn’t be beat, and placed a nice big order.  My MOH had been busy scouring local thrift shops for antique tea cups, and found our cookie stand, along with some tea pots.  Everyone got a unique tea cup, a choice of a few different teas, and then we dug in.  And dug in some more.  At we chatted, and chatted and chatted.  I had such a wonderful time, and shared so much laughter, and enjoyed everyone’s company to such a high degree, I’m still chuckling over some of the things today.  Much superior to a boozy feather boa filled evening in Vegas, and we didn’t wake up to find a tiger in our bathroom the next day.  Just leftover pastries (not in the bathroom, the fridge). 

 Plus, I got the Queen cup, which made me feel very special indeed!

 My wedding stole and bouquet turned out much better than I had hoped.  With lace you really never know the finished product until you get it all washed, and pinned out.  Then you say “wow, that really is long”, and then “Golly that sure is pretty”.  The pattern is Bleeding Hearts by Anne Hanson, from the Spring 2008 Interweave magazine.  The yarn is a merino laceweight, which had been a gift from the mighty Miss Joce.   I felt very bride-like wearing the stole for the ceremony, and during the photographs it kept my shoulders warm.  We were caught in a bit of a rain storm, therefore the warmth was appreciated. 

 The flowers for the bouquet were crocheted by my mother from alpaca yarn.  100% wool would have been better but I couldn’t find a good orange colour in any other yarn (and I looked in all the Calgary yarn stores).  The pattern is for the trumpet flowers from Nicky Epsteins Crocheted Flowers.  I felted them, along with the leaves, and then added the beads into the middle.  For the stems I used floral wire, which Mr. J wrapped at the top.  I then wrapped all the stems together in electical tape.  They stayed together very well!  For the flower girl bouquets I had one flower in each that didn’t have the smaller flower inside.  These flowers became the groom and best man pins.  I tied our rings inside these flowers so that my nieces carried flowers and our rings.  I had just used a simple bow and piece of yarn, but it still seemed harder than it should of to untie them, but our officiant managed to get them out!  Plus with them being tied in my nieces couldn’t lose the rings.  I was very pleased with how these turned out, and again I felt quite special.  The Matron of Honour stole turned out a bit short, I should have done many more repeats.  As it was superwash yarn I was expecting it to stretch more than it did.  The dark green colour did look wonderful in photos however, and kept my MOH shoulders warm in the rain!  I’m hoping she will find a use for it this winter.  So very happy wedding crafting for me!

Althea had been screaming for a half hour, and I couldn’t get her to stop.  She was so tired after 3 days of meeting Grandparents, Aunties, Uncles, cousins, friends, and she had been such a trooper until just then, but it seems it had all built up into a big melt down.  This was at 3:30 pm, and the wedding was scheduled to begin at 4 pm.  As the guests were starting to arrive I bundled up all our things and scrambled downstairs to where we were supposed to finish getting ready.  Sofie tried to finish putting make-up on me as I shushed, rocked, and tried to soothe my little baby, who just needed a moment to fall asleep.  A desperate message was sent out to the favorite auntie (my brother’s wife) to come and help, Althea was soothed, and dressed while I finished getting ready.  Favorite Auntie worked her magic, and then my Matron of Honour took over to carry Althea up the stairs to the loft where all the guests were assembled, the official was waiting to do the ceremony (she claimed she could do it in 12 minutes) and my favorite groom were waiting.  On the dot of four the flowers girls, MOH, and then my father and I started up the stairs.  Althea was the charming baby she normally is, quiet, smiling, probably sticking her tongue out at people, and not a peep much less a screaming sob out of her.  The ceremony may have been longer than twelve minutes but I don’t quite remember as I hadn’t calmed down after the rush the last hour had been.  Suddenly I was married to the man of my dreams, we both had glistening eyes, and we enjoyed a kiss. 

The best part of the day was honestly when we went to do photos outside the lodge, as Althea fell asleep as soon as she was in the car seat, and slept for an hour.  When she has a good nap I can finally relax and enjoy myself.  We took the full time for photos, and now that I’ve seen them, we got some really, really good shots.  The wildflowers which the lodge provided were mostly lilacs which are my favorite and smelled wonderful.  The dinner was nutritious and delicious.  I got my wedding morning bike ride in, and Julian got his, but he didn’t wear a tiara like we did.  One woman banged part of her tiara off on some tree branches, which was pretty funny.  I got to spend wonderful precious time with my friends, who were so kind to travel out to Fernie for the wedding.  My dear friend from Sweden, who I have not seen in nine long years, spent a week with us, which was so much fun.  We had family enjoy themselves, and family complain, which we expected.  I developed a fun new technique of pretending the complaints were actually compliments.  “There isn’t that much in Fernie” was answered with ‘Yup, it sure is a great little town isn’t it!”.  This new technique is making me very happy.

Mr. J and I are now at home by ourselves, and enjoying married life.  So far this involves looking after our baby (who is now sitting up, rolling from front to back as well as back to front, and really wanting to crawl) watching Le Tour, not cleaning, and trying to unpack our suitcases.  We’ll get back into the swing of thing eventually but right now we’re enjoying some good relaxing time.  Aaahhhhh!  I’ve so much more to tell you over the next little while! 

Fernie Weekend

July 20, 2010

The mountains around Fernie are very green this time of year, and just bursting with life.  It was so good to get out of the city and wander around in the woods, cleansing my lungs with some nice fresh air.  We had beautiful days and rainy evenings with a fair amount of mosquitos which inclined us to skip the campfire and instead play cribbage inside the tent before falling asleep.  We got our wedding business out of the way by noon on Saturday, which is the benefit of only having two places to visit.  We have decided on one venue, and are now deciding on which weekend next June will be the lucky one.  One venue was better for guest accommodation, but the other (Elk Valley Lodge) had such beautiful locationsto  have the actual ceremony and reception.  We can either get married outside on the lawn surrounded by trees and mountains, or inside the loft with the mountain view.  Can’t lose there.  The lodge will do all the decoration with candles and wild flowers on the tables, and what will hopefully be excellent food.  I’m already looking forward to it. The rooftop hot tub doesn’t hurt either.   After the tough decisions were made we took ourselves into the mountains!

Ahhh, the babbling brook, the wild flowers, the breeze, the sunshine, the constant calls of “yo bear” as I worried about stumbling onto a black or grizzly bear.  There have also been cougars sighted in the area.

On Sunday I took myself up to the incredible Island Lake Lodge.  If we have about  a million dollars budget we would get married here by the lake, but alas we don’t.  I started around the lake loop, which is well used by tourists, and close into the lodge.  I suddenly glanced up and noticed a giant bull moose about ten feet down the trail, silent gazing at me, already stopped.

He had the huge antlers, the beard, and rather a calm demeanor which didn’t fool me.  As a wise Canadian I didn’t stop to take photos, but instead gave up the trail to him, as he was obviously going my way.  I went about 10 feet off the trail and hunkered down behind some rather sturdy looking trees that I figured were close enough together that he couldn’t get through them with his huge antlers.  I was hoping he would keep going down the trail so that I could get a better photo, but after around 10 minutes he did  a sharp right turn and went off into the woods.  He seemed very peaceful and not too worried by me, but better safe than sorry!  And here I was worried about the cougar sightings!

Wedding Attire

April 23, 2010

The next big question is what to wear on the big wedding day.  At much as I’m loathe to admit it, I think we already have “wedding colours”.  Mr. J’s favorite colour is burnt orange, and  mine is green, so there you go. 

**If Mr. J is around, or mentions anything to anyone, I’m wearing an incredibly huge pouffy dress, with a 10 foot train, and it will cost approximately $5000** (It might be tradition to surprise him on the wedding day, but its also kind of fun keeping this joke going with him)

The question of wedding attire is another uncomfortable one with me, as I cannot for the life of me picture myself in a wedding dress.  It’s just not “me”, and I think it is ridiculous to force myself into something I don’t want to do.  Again, I have never pictured myself getting married and wearing a white dress, I was busy studying calculus.  So I figure I should start with something I can get excited about: shoes.  I really want to wear the most fantastic pair of shoes that I can find, since my normal life does not really lend itself to wearing fabulous shoes, as I haven’t been to a ball, or met the Queen.  Since Mr. J is 6’7″ I can wear the biggest pair of heels I want to, in fact the bigger, more platform pair of shoes I can find the better.  I’m thinking stiletto, huge heels, shiny, sparkly, and green.  Something like this:

Martinez Valero Women's Caitlin Shoe

But perhaps a darker green.  I have a feeling I’ll find what I’m looking for when all the Xmas party shoes come out.  Okay, with this level of excitement about shoes, I can go onto dresses.  I have to have something to show off those lovely shoes don’t I?  How about this dress? 

I can picture myself in that one!!  And then I’ll need a beautiful lace stole to match the shoes perfectly!  A bit of a hair-do, some make-up and I might be able to pull this bride thing off. 

I’ve also found some killer white mountain bike gear for the mornings ride…  Trust me, I’m much more excited about that, but the green shoes could tip the balance.

How to Plan a Wedding

April 21, 2010

Seriously, does anyone know how to plan a wedding?  The fact that I’m actually going to get married is sometimes even harder to wrap my head around, it always seemed like something so far away, and beyond the realms of this world.  I never was the girl who dreamed of getting married, I was busy running around, jumping over things, building forts, and reading adventure books.  I have never once pictured what my wedding day would look like, my Barbies were too busy having fashions shows, they didn’t have time for such silliness. 

However here we are, and Mr. J and I are busy trying to figure out what we want to do.  We both agree we are going to feel very uncomfortable standing in front of a lot of people (staring at us!!! ahhhhh!!!) and saying vows, but its still what we want to do.  We want small, we want simple, we want nice, good.  I also wanted to get married somewhere that we both like, that is presentable enough to not need decorations, that could look after a quality dinner, and a place we could return on anniversaries.  I was amazing adamant on that last point, which negated getting married at home, since we will eventually move to a different house.  I also nixed a courthouse or eloping idea ( I think Mr. J nixed that one as well) since I’m pretty sure the parents would like a nice wedding to attend, and the whole walking down the aisle thingy. 

So we will begin with a problem statement:

(In bold) How to plan a Wedding

Then we will break the problem down into steps in order to make it more manageable.  Good engineers do this all the time, breaking complex problems down into tiny steps (Go to the Moon – measure distance to the moon etc.)

Step 1: Buy a notebook to write everything down.

Step 2: Make a guest list – this should help us with the venue, as I assume it will be the venue-person’s first question. 

So there you go, we’ve completed Step 1, and are working on Step 2.  Now that is progress!! 

We also have a mission statement – Keep it simple.  We’re repeated this one many, many times already