Snapshots of Summer 2013


Wedding band (bling, bling not drum solo) excitement!

Fancy rendering of what my wedding band will look like with the diamonds from the ring Dad gave me!  So cool.

Fancy rendering of what my wedding band will look like with the diamonds from the ring Dad gave me! So cool.

Jason and I had talked about what I wanted to do for a wedding band.  When I turned 21… quite a few years ago… my Dad gave me a beautiful yellow gold ring with diamonds in it.  It was my first “real” diamond ring.  It was as much a birthday present as it was a blatant challenge to all men who wanted to be in my future.  They better be able to at least match that.  At the time I thought it was a little foolish… now I am thankful for him setting the bar high.  Not with the ring, but with all the other life lessons and expectations that he taught me. 

Respect isn’t free, trust is golden and dishonesty is unforgivable. 

All that to say that all these years later I have repurposed that ring and all the diamonds are going into my wedding band that I will wear every day as a custom and unique pairing of the diamonds from the first man I ever loved, and the custom engagement ring from the last man I will ever love.  I’m so excited to have stumbled across this solution to my quandary over the wedding band. 

Another awesome job from Chalmers Jewelers here in Madison where they make their own custom jewelry and have such great service.  I’m thankful for them and to Jason for choosing them for my engagement band.

Another decision down… next!

Wedding babbles…

Work in progress, but still really fun and informational :) 

I like being able to add pictures and information about the wedding and venue.  It also has an RSVP function.  I don’t know if I’ll use it because I also like the idea of a paper invitation, but at the same time it would be really nice to save the money that would be spent on invitations and postage and do it electronically.  I am pretty sure however that about 30% of my family wouldn’t even know the website existed… so maybe some kind of combination of both?

All these thoughts…. I emailed the pastor today who baptized myself, my sister and my nieces.  He also married my Mom and Step Dad.  I asked if he would be willing/able to be our officiant at our wedding.  It would be really cool if he said yes, because he is a good guy and has been a part of some pretty big days for this family so far.

I also emailed another caterer.  Someone I met last week during a happy hour, as Gibbs (NCIS) would say, “there are no such thing as coincidences”… so I decided I shouldn’t miss out on the opportunity to go and at least taste what she has to offer.  She is a local caterer and it would be neat to keep as much stuff local as possible.

I also sent out a meassage to a few of my family and friends for input on DJs, it’s hard to know what a good deal is when I haven’t spent much time or money investing in them before.  So I got a quote and recommendation and forwarded it along for review :) 

Then I used the handy book my Mom gave me to do some mathmatics on wine consumption based on probable number of guests.  When I saw that for the open bar alone (not including wine served at dinner), their estimate was 56 bottles of wine (20 red, 36 white) and 4-6 cases of beer… I realized that I need better connections in the beverage industry.

With so much work going on, it is nice once and a while to feel like I’m making some progress on personal stuff too!  Even if it is just sending off emails and looking at checklists… I’ll check stuff off as it comes, luckily I have a lot of time and creative people in my circle of awesomeness.

Cheers to warmer weather, wedding planning and good things ahead!!

Cheers to warmer weather, wedding planning and good things ahead!!

Etsy Inspirations…

I love etsy… sometimes I forget it even exists (mainly because of the massive amounts of work I’ve been doing… I’m lucky to remember to eat).  Today, however is not one of those days!!

I want to make this myself:

I think this is totally classy and adorable (and perfect for hidden notes):

I love these signs for decor at the wedding:

I’m a big fan of any kind of wood-block signage:

Great idea for holding all my wedding-related ideas/items/goodies:

There is just SO MUCH CUTENESS to be had on Etsy!  I love it all.

Okay, back to the chain gang.

Latest obsessions


These wedding styles:



Can't even tell the aligners are in.


It’s a Date!

After finding a dress fairly quickly that I absolutely adore and couldn’t imagine getting married in anything else, I went on the hunt for a venue.  Some people wanted to know why I was so rushed to find a venue.  Well, I wasn’t set on any particular date… but I wanted to set a date.  So, I needed to find a venue and per its availability set said date.

I felt like setting the date would be my anchor for planning going forward.  It helps note when we will honeymoon (helloooooooo Italy… pasta, wine, rolling hills, wine, love, wine… oh yeah). It also helps me to plan all the other little things that I need to keep track of.  Knowing I should order particular things 6 months prior to a wedding only helps if I know when the wedding is!

I was in search of a venue that would both take my breath away and feel comfortable and “mine”.  Since I do not have a plantation, barn, or glorious backyard with a mountain for a backdrop (like so many brides do on those darn wedding blogs)… I needed to go venue shopping.

The Barn at Harvest Moon Pond ( did all that and more.  The thought and creativity put into every detail of that place was awesome.  Did I mention it is a barn that has chandeliers?  Well, it does.  If you drive past it at night, you get excited.  Renee, the owner, was concerned that seeing it at night wasn’t giving us the full picture.  I’m sure it is just as glorious during the day, but seeing it at night had my heart sold!

Then came the date negotiation.  There was a May date available which originally I was totally all for.  It was a Friday in May.  Eventually, we were reminded that school is still in session and people would have to take off of work AND school in order to make it.  It didn’t seem like a big deal to me at first (brides aren’t the brightest at times) and then I realized WE have a little guy in school then too.  While I’m sure he would jump at the chance of a day off, it just became overwhelming thinking of the logistics of it all.  I solemnly looked back to other emails and realized that two dates in June for Fridays were available.  I’d totally ignored them because I was focused on April/May… darn tunnel vision!  I inquired as to their availability and less than 36 hours later… BOOM.  Signed contract.

Now, a little more about this venue.  It’s maximum capacity is 250 people.  It has a gorgeous backyard area that includes a ceremony site (weather permitting) some willow trees, bonfire (marshmallows are included in the price) and a nice big pond.  Inside are very tastefully done bathrooms, kitchens, bar area (with a wine fridge… score!), and changing rooms for the bridal party. 

The brides changing room is adorable.  A long countertop with 4 mirrors, 4 sets of outlets and 1 sink are there so everyone can primp, curl, fluff and prepare together.  There is a big mirror to admire yourself in as well as a big enough bathroom to gather up your dress and backup to do your duty. 

The grooms/groomsmen changing room has a miller high life table in it… hopefully it is still there when we leave.  Renee might have to check Jason’s car for that bad boy.  It was originally built in 1865 and has been family owned this whole time.  There are wedding pictures of the generations that have owned it and also some antique decorations like an old phone and loose hay grabber.

It is about 5 minutes from our house.  15 minutes from DeForest (where we will likely book room blocks) and about 30 minutes from the Madison Airport.  Nothing too far or daunting for traveling family and/or friends.

I’m just tickled about it all (I’m sure you can’t tell).

Here are the details:

Venue: The Barn at Harvest Moon Pond (

Date: Friday, June 27th 2014