Craziest Year Ever

When Justin proposed to me on Christmas eve this past year, I thought things could not get any crazier. My family was going through a difficult time and no one was having a particularly good December. Crazy as it seems, I thought things would settle down! Things have settled to an extent, but Justin and I still find ourselves extremely busy.

I started researching photographers in January and I searched for two months until I found someone I was comfortable with. We drove up to Nashville to meet with Dove Photography and we were sold! They were awesome to speak with and the lovely Whitney had attended school under some of the same professors that I was aware of at UGA. How awesome is that!

Then Justin and I sought out a reception location... that we can no longer use.

We followed that up by seeking an awesome florist like Amy Osaba. I was a bit confused from our first meeting with her, but Justin managed to get things straightened out.

All the while we've been meeting with Father Tim Hepburn of GA Tech trying to get pre-marital counseling out of the way.

And don't even talk to me about dress looking! It took me almost 2 months to find a dress I liked enough to order. Meanwhile I stressed my parents and friends out!

Over the weekend we found an awesome coordinator we are excited to work with! And this weekend we hope to make a decision on our reception location. Then we move on to decorations, food, and stationary! Ack!!!

I think the worst part is that some of my friends don't understand that when I say I'm busy over the weekend with my fiancé, we are typically trying to sort some wedding dilemma out. I do have to say that the greatest reward will come on the day of our wedding when we both know we have given our all to make this day special and "perfect" for us!

Has anybody else gone crazy while engaged or am I alone?

Amy Neben's The Bride's Book of Lists

When I first started planning, I was not looking for bridal books. I figured what could be available in a book that I can't find online? I decided to follow a random bride's advice and obtained Bridal Bargains Wedding Planner (by Denise and Alan Fields) to help me plan the wedding; I thought it would offer suggestions on how to save money when purchasing wedding things. I think I paid around $3 for a used copy on Amazon. Unfortunately, this was a very disappointing purchase. At the end of my wedding, I will end up trashing the book feeling that it was almost entirely useless. There are a few ideas and some list-making help, but in general the book only provides general wedding knowledge that can be found online.

I'm not quite sure how I heard about The Bride's Book of Lists, but I am very glad I purchased it. The lists in the book include questions and general advice on talking with and purchasing from wedding vendors. I do not feel that the author Amy Neben is trying to tell me how to go about doing my wedding planning, but rather she is saving me time by providing all of the lists I need in one place. (It is also quite relaxing to go through and see all of the things I have checked off. It makes me feel accomplished.)

If I could re-do Neben's book, I might also have included places for magazine cut-outs and a list of guests. Otherwise her book includes every list you could possibly need for wedding planning! If you are a bride, I definitely encourage going out and purchasing it!

Overview - Who We Are

While this blog was created mostly for family and friends to keep up with our wedding planning, I decided an overview of myself and Justin might be a good idea for new friends that may be following our humble, little blog.

I am Mandy:
part-time nanny, part-time graphic design intern
photographer, crafter

He is Justin:
work-a-holic (GA Tech graduate, computer engineer)
fantastic cook (and great at every other thing imaginable!)

We met many, many, many years ago. In elementary school.

But I would have nothing to do with him.

Until senior year of high school. We went to prom as friends and within 3 months, we were dating.

Six and a half years later, on Christmas eve, he proposed at Café Intermezzo completely blindsiding me. It didn't matter. I said yes. He had hand picked every aspect of my engagement ring out, "borrowed" one of my rings to obtain my finger size, and asked my dad behind my back. (What was I suppose to say? No????)

Now we are planning our wedding. Hand picking every aspect. I spent 2 months researching photographers, 2 months searching for a dress AT EVERY STORE IN ATLANTA, and I am now going on 1 month looking for a coordinator.

When we started planning, I was going for something plain and simple. Now our wedding can be described in these five words: pink, blue, lace, flowers, vintage. Oh - with some awesome black and white photography thrown in! (Did I mention the cupcakes???!)

Feel free to follow our blog as we prepare for the biggest, most important day in our relationship thus far!


Cherry blossom reception decoration choices

Who knew there were so many choices?

Justin and I received our Townecraft cookware today in the mail that we got from last week's "win".

On a side note, my mom and I will be having a Mary Kay makeover on Thursday thanks to a "win" at a bridal show.