Monthly Archives: September 2010

The Tale of Two Rings

*** Editor’s Note:  I posted the correct answers under each picture.  Good guesses, everyone!  Thanks for playing along, guys!  ***

This is the tale of two rings,

Both shiny, wonderful things.

To be worn on the hand

Of the lady of the land.

So she could show off some bling.

Ring Pictures 001

007  *
(Top picture is the real ring, bottom picture is the fake ring)

Yet one of these rings was a fake,

An important distinction to make.

The fake ring was bought

Years prior for naught

So the girl could imagine her fate.

Ring  **
(Real ring)

Then imagine her shock and surprise,

When a real ring was brought before her eyes

By the love of her life

A guy twice as nice

Who wanted them to share their lives.

I Do 2

The real ring was nearly the one

As the fake she had bought just for fun!

Exactly what she would have picked–

That’s how much she and the groom clicked–

That he knew it was the most perfect one.

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(Real ring)

Fast forward almost two years

The wedding is just about here!

In goes her ring

To get shined up and things,

And out comes the fake to stay clear.

(Fake ring)

So what’s the lesson that can be learned?

Don’t let your eyesight fool your turn!

Which one is fake?

It’s your distinction to make

And comment for 10 bonus points earned.***

* Photos by me.
** Photos by Sarah Immel Photography.
***So, can you tell which one is fake and which one is real?  There is more than one photo of the fake ring and the real ring on this page.  10 points to anyone who guesses correctly, haha!



Filed under Jewelry, Just For Fun

What’s for Dinner?

Or, the post about our menu cards!

I love the way these turned out.  Here’s a quick tutorial!

DIY Menu Cards
Cardstock or decorative paper for the actual menus (I used the same shimmery gold cardstock as our table numbers and other paper products) 
Cardstock for the backing
Paper Cutter
Double-sided Tape
Rhinestones or other decorative element

First up, you’ll want to design your menu in Microsoft Word.  I sized mine to be just under the 5×7 size, so that when they were backed with cardstock, the menus were about 5×7 total.  Print two to a sheet (or more if you are doing skinny menus!)

Menus, etc 001

Next, you’ll need to cut your menus out.  When designing, I used a light gray line to give me the boundaries of each menu, so I would know where to cut and they would all be the same size!


Cut, cut, cut some more, until you have a pile of menus (240 to be exact) that look like these…

Menu Stacks

…and a piles of scraps that look like these!


If you’re lucky, you’ll have a helper to help you cut:

Helper(Mom, seriously.  Aren’t you done with this wedding crap yet?) 

Next, you’ll need to mount your menu to your cardstock backing.  I used basic black.  Using double-sided tape or the adhesive method of your choice, again mount two menus to each sheet.



Then, you’ll cut, cut, cut those, until you have a stack of completed menus.  Now it’s time to embellish!  I bought this pack of rhinestones at JoAnn Fabrics.  We will also be using it for our escort cards…there were 700 rhinestones on this one sheet! 


Place a rhinestone just under the “Menu” designation on each menu…

Up close

And voila!  A completed dinner menu.  I love the way they look!  The fonts I used were Chopin Script and Copperplate Gothic Light, which were both used throughout our paper products.


And here’s what guests will see when they pull them out of their napkins:

Full Menu

So, what is for dinner?

First Course:
Bibb Salad – Boston Bibb lettuce, roasted roma tomatoes, toasted pine nuts and shaved parmesan cheese, served with Italian herbs vinaigrette

Tuscan Chicken – one-half chicken, crisply roasted in the traditional Tuscan style with rosemary & garlic, served with French green beans & roasted potatoes


Shrimp Cavattapi – gulf shrimp tossed in light pesto cream sauce, with zucchini squash & cherry tomatoes

Wedding Cake – Spice cake with vanilla bean pastry cream & cream cheese-white chocolate buttercream

YUM.  Can’t wait!

Did you do menus for your wedding?  Are you planning to?

*All photos by me!


Filed under Decor, Food & Drink

11 Days to Go…

…and so, here we are.

11 Days

 I didn’t get a chance to update you on the list last week, so let’s have a look, shall we?  (My notes, once again, are in Italics).

Make-Up Trial. [So, this is basically done.  I know what/how I am doing things for my base, blush, lip color, mascara.  My bridesmaid KDoc is doing my eyes, and I just need to select a shadow.  She’s AMAZING at makeup, so I am not worried about it—makeup is one of those things I just really don’t care about.  As long as I look nice, I’ll be happy!]

Finalize Accessories.  [This too is basically done.  I have a few pairs of earrings selected, and I know what bracelets I am wearing.  I still need to find a necklace, but I know where I am going for that and I am just going to buy a couple of options and have my girls help me decide that day.  Again, I am not too worried about it!]

Make wedding favors. [This will be done Thursday before the wedding.  We have a plan of attack, some helpers enlisted, and I purchased all the supplies already—we are doing popcorn favors, if you’ll remember.  I also have the logo stickers designed and the packaging purchased, so it will really be an assembly line that day to get them packed up.  I think it will be a fun bonding experience for all of us who are doing it.]

Meet with photographer to discuss day’s schedule and finalize shot list. [This week!]

Final tux fitting for Dr. Groomy; pick up tuxes. [Thursday before wedding]
Drop off everything for reception
at reception site—family pictures, wedding dresses, mannequins, escort cards, table numbers, day-of schedule, vendor contacts, favors, etc. [Next Monday!]
Confirm all wedding day beauty appointments. [This week!]
Organize tipping envelopes. [After pay day this week, hahaha!]

Mani-pedi. [Scheduled an appointment for me and my Maid of Honor/sister on Friday, October 8.  She was the only one who was able to go with me that day, but that is ok, as I am looking forward to having some good sister bonding time that morning!]
Relax, enjoy the week, and spend time welcoming family and friends. [Basically, starting now.  I will be a yoga/workout queen these last few days!]
GET HITCHED!! [Saturday, October 9]

Um, peeps.  Do you know what this means?  It means that basically, we are ready to get married.  WOW!  I have just a few last minute things to take care of…a few extra out of town bags, finishing up the escort cards with my friend Liz on Thursday, finalize the information packets for the bridal party and vendors…but otherwise, we’re pretty much done. 

So how do I feel?  I feel…weird.  I am excited, definitely.  And I go through various stages of excitement throughout the day.  But I also feel…sadness?  No, that’s not the right word.  I feel…odd.  We have been planning this for SOOOOOOO LONG and now suddenly, it’s here and all coming to an end.  My DIY projects are, essentially, finished.  And while I am relieved to have this time to relax and reflect, I am also oddly sad that it’s all about to be over. 

I also feel…overwhelmed.  Not from things that need to be done, no…but from the sheer excitement that I am feeling and the excitement that others have expressed to me.  It is overwhelming, there is no other way to state it.  I can’t IMAGINE how I’ll feel on the actual day, surrounded and loved by friends and family.  I am so emotional about it now, I don’t know how I will be that day.

So there’s your status report kids, hot off the presses from 11 days out.  And tell me:  how did you feel about your wedding day?  Were you on the same emotional roller coaster I am?


Filed under Random

More Miscellany

Another round up of projects completed!  First up, our card box:

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This was super easy to make.  It did take a little time, but I am happy with the way it turned out.  Unfortunately, I am a bad blogger who didn’t take any pictures of the process, but here’s a quick run-down.

DIY Cardbox
Materials needed:

3 boxes of different sizes—I bought plain cardboard boxes with removable tops from Michaels (found near the papier mache type stuff!), but you could really use anything you’ve got around the house 
Wrapping paper of various colors—try to keep a cohesive scheme, unless you’re not going for cohesive-ness, then by all means have at it!
Double sided tape
Glue gun
Cut-out letters (I bought some sparkly ones at Michael’s but you could make these, as well)

Begin by deciding the placement of your boxes.  Once you’ve done that, you will need to cut a large hole in the TOP of the bottom box and the BOTTOM of the middle box.  This is so that you have lots of room for cards to be put in the box.  You’ll also need to cut a slot for cards in the middle box.  I made a pretty wide slot to account for the wide range of cards—I know our cardbox will be well watched, so I am not worried about anyone sticking their hands in there to grab out cards (plus, I trust our guests.).  Next, wrap your individual boxes in the wrapping paper, using double sided tape so you don’t have any tape lines.  Then, using a glue gun, glue the boxes together.  Add some ribbon trim around any rough edges of wrapping (if you use boxes similar to mine, trust me, you’ll have them!).  Glue your letters on in a design you like, add some ribbon and a bow on top, and voila!  A cardbox! 

Next up, our guest book.  We went back and forth for a really long time as to what to do for a guest book, but finally decided on using a signature frame.  This seems to be really popular at weddings lately (we have gone to two weddings where this was used), but we really liked the idea.   Anyone who knows me knows that while I love design, home shows, and decorating…I feel I am kind of not good at it.  The decor of our house is something I will definitely be working on post wedding, and we thought a signature frame was a great way to add some fun artwork to our walls.  Here it is:

Wedding 008

I also made a little sign to go next to it:

Wedding 010 
It says:

In lieu of a traditional guest book, please sign this signature frame.  We plan to display the artwork in our home, so that we have a constant reminder of the love and friendship you have shared by celebrating with us today.  Thank you for sharing our special day!

All that’s left to do is put out a little glass vase with some pens to go with it!  Here’s the photo we used—I like it because it’s a bit more artsy-fartsy than just a regular photo of the two of us:


And lastly:  I promised all of you a look at what our family photo table/wedding dress display will look like.  Of all the projects I’ve done, I think I love this one the most.  I think it will have a huge impact at our wedding and I am really proud of it.  Here it is:

Wedding 001 Wedding 002

I had to show it as two different pictures because the display is so large.  We have over 25 photos from various family weddings and seriously?  I can’t tell you what the impact even is when you look at all of them.  It is amazing and I am so, so happy to have this at our wedding.  Here’s some close-ups:

Wedding 003
My mother-in-law’s dress

Wedding 004
My mom’s dress

Wedding 005

Wedding 006

Wedding 007

I am so, so happy with the way this turned out.  It was a lot of work and, let’s face it, a total pain in the ass sometimes, but now that it’s all together and completed, I am so glad we decided to do it.  Yay!

I’ve been feeling under the weather lately but I’m still trying my best to knock out tons of projects.  This weekend should be HUGE in terms of getting stuff done.  With any luck, I will have most everything completed!  I can’t wait to have the next two weeks to relax, do lots of yoga, and deal with any last minute things that come up. 

What are some of your favorite projects from your wedding?


Filed under Decor, How-To

Licensed To Wed

Two posts in one day?!  You lucky readers!

This is just a quick one to say that we are officially licensed to wed.  We applied for our marriage license last week at the courthouse…

Courthouse  (Source)

…but we didn’t get to pick it up until today.  Dr. Groomy went to get it on his way to work, and then brought it to my office so that we could snap a few pics!

Marriage License 002  Look at that beard!  And that messy bulletin board, haha!

Marriage License 003

So let me hear a “woo, woo!”  We’re all set to wed!  Yay!  18 more days…


Filed under Announcements


*That’s “cute, yet unnecessary” in my blog lingo, kids.  Here’s another round of fun projects to add a touch of whimsy to the wedding weekend events!

First up, you’ll remember the cutesy surprise I made for my bridesmaids for the rehearsal? [BRIDESMAIDS: Don’t click!]  I had to make a cute surprise for our ring bearer and flower girl, too!

Enter, the practice pomander and ring pillow:

More Wedding 026

Oh yes, I did.  These were easy peasy!

For the ring bearer pillow, I used a piece of styrofoam and a clear container I had leftover from random wedding gifts.  I glued a yellow ribbon around the styrofoam piece, then glued the whole thing into the clear container (to make it easier to carry!).  The last step was sticking in some lollipops!

More Wedding 016

Eh voila, a practice ring bearer pillow:


003  Side

For the pomander, I used a styrofoam ball and some ribbon to create the pomander itself.  Next, I added some tulle flowers I whipped up using the tutorial I used for the first version of our pomanders.  Lastly, I stuck stuck stuck the lollipops and flowers all over the ball.

More Wedding 017

And behold, a practice pomander!

More Wedding 025

Cute, no?  I need to trim up the tulle on the pomander a bit, but overall, I am happy with how these turned out and think they’ll be fun for the kids to use at rehearsal.

Another CYU project finished this weekend?  Chair signs.  I don’t know if I have spoken about this before, but we are not having a head table at our reception.  Instead, we are sitting with our parents and our best man and maid of honor, while our bridal party and their dates will be seated at two tables flanking us on either side.  I’ll explain this more in depth later this week when I discuss our seating chart, but needless to say, since we’re sitting at a regular round table, I knew I wanted to have special signs for our chairs!  I mean, look at all this cute inspiration:

Chair Signs 1

Chair Signs 2

Chair Signs 3
(Source via Source)

I knew I wanted to take a bit more “cheeky” route than these signs though…so, after perusing some more inspiration from the blogosphere, I created these:

More Wedding 028

Oh, what’s that?  You can’t read them?  Here you go:

More Wedding 029


Yep, I went there!  I used the same sparkly gold cardstock as our table numbers, mounted the signs on black cardstock, and finished with a ribbon.  I LOVE the way they turned out, and think that any guest who notices will get a big kick out of them.

What fun projects did you tackle in the weeks leading up to your wedding?

*All photos, unless noted, are mine.  Did you see that I also updated my DIY page?


Filed under Decor, Gifts, How-To


So many wedding projects were completed this weekend!  If you take a look at the list, you’ll see how SHORT it is!  So exciting!  By far the biggest project of the weekend, though, was this:

More Wedding 046 
Our Welcome Bags are finished!  These will be handed out to the guests who are staying on our hotel room blocks at the various hotels.  We went shopping for them and I assembled everything between Saturday and Sunday.  Whew!  It was a lot of work, but I had a lot of fun putting these together. 

So, what’s included in each bag?

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We included two water bottles, a bag of mixed nuts, a bag of our FAVORITE potato chips,  some Tootsie Rolls, and some gum.  Oh, and what are those paper products?!

The first one is a little bit of fun:

More Wedding 013A Do Not Disturb Sign for our guests’ hotel room doors!

Here’s a close-up:

More Wedding 014The top part says “We Partied Too Hard at Amy & Bradley’s Wedding!”, while the bottom is a tongue-in-cheek “In Case of Emergency” fill-in-the-blank.

The other paper product is our Welcome Packet.  Originally, I was going to include various guide books from the Milwaukee area…but when it came down to it, I didn’t get around to hoarding enough from local hotels and travel establishments to make it work.  Instead, I decided to just make a packet with pertinent information for our guests.  Because we don’t have to make programs for our ceremony (our church creates them for us, score!), this project sort of took the place of that and I looked for inspiration from a lot of brides’ wedding programs.  Here’s what our Welcome Packets look like:

More Wedding 037Front

More Wedding 038  Welcome Letter.  You can’t see it very well here but we individually signed each and every welcome letter, in a colored Sharpie that matched the covers of each packet (here, the color is yellow).

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Weekend Itinerary & Key Contacts

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Walking Directions & Cab Information

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Restaurants & Local Attractions

I made Welcome Packets in 5 different colors, just for something fun:

More Wedding 042We had to fill 30 Welcome Bags, so we did  6 of each color.  Easy peasy!

You may have also noticed our SWEET water bottles we included in the bags: 

More Wedding 010 
I’ll be doing a separate tutorial post on those later this week!

So, those are our Welcome Bags!  I think our guests will like them!  It feels SO good to have those done.  My wedding projects list is getting smaller and smaller…and hopefully by the end of this coming weekend, I should pretty much have EVERYTHING done, almost a week ahead of my “week-ahead schedule” and two weeks ahead of the wedding.  Yay!

Did you do Out of Town or Welcome Bags?  What did you include?


Filed under Gifts