How pretentious does it sound to say, "We've had 2 silver artists work on the creation of our wedding bands designed by Jerry"? Well, that's not how it's intended but that is how it's going. The wonderful lady who crafted our bands doesn't do casting, so I found someone else on etsy to do that part. This artist told me the incredible story of breaking her neck several years ago and until recently not even being able to use her right arm and hand at all. She found out she loves jewelry design and creation, and when I sent her the poorly crafted Sculpey piece for her to make our ring top castings, she was so excited to get to work on them that she had to force herself to stop and go to bed the first night she worked on them. She even had a bit of silver left over and made me a matching charm for a necklace. I can't wait until we get them in the mail and can finally get our rings finished. She asked to hear our story, and she really seemed moved by it. It's great to see so many people have a wonderful reaction to it. There are so many bad things that go on in the world, and even in people's personal lives, that I think everyone still loves to hear a happy ending, no matter how jaded they pretend to be. Nobody, though, is happier about it than I am.
Got inspired once again by offbeatbride.com, this time in reference to the guest book. Mom got the cutest journal with a loving sentiment on the front that's just perfect and only cost her $3 on clearance at Burlington Coat Factory. Yep, they sell more than coats! My sister asked me about a pen, and truthfully I hadn't thought much at all about one. I figured I'd probably end up pulling one out of my purse and using that. Well, not anymore! The idea of having a pen that looked like a flower was just too appealing. I modified what they said to do on the website, of course. Instead of using a plastic flower I made one from the scraps I had left over from cutting the bottom of Erin's dress off. Then I ran a wire through it's base, twisted it around a regular ink pen and taped it on with electrical tape (it was handy and is thicker than Scotch tape so I'm hoping it'll hold better). Then instead of florist's tape, I used fabric glue to glue some bright green ribbon to the top and started winding down the pen. Once I reached the bottom, I cut the ribbon to length and tacked that side down, too. It still wasn't over the top enough for me, so I decided this flower needed some leaves. I broke out the hot glue gun this time, gluing a circle of more green ribbon, pinching it in the center and gluing that down, then glued that to the bottom of the rose. Now, that's a pen worth writing about!
Making signs that lead guests to the wedding has been on my to-do list for quite a while - ever since I wrote a blog about where we were going to hold the event and posted the cutest picture of these rustic wooden signs leading the way. I really wanted some free scraps of wood, so I set off to my local do-it-your-own-damned-self store to see what they had. I met a friendly older guy wearing those new style butt shaping sneakers and he walked with me over to the lumber area. He didn't see any scraps where they usually have them so he was about to give up. I asked if he could find someone who'd been working back there; maybe they knew if they threw everything out already today. He stops this large Hispanic guy named, I kid you not, Nufo. Sounds like some kind of dirty text-speak abbreviation. Nufo was very nice and accommodating, though. He took me to the section where there was a cart of scrap pieces. They had quite a bit. The only bad thing was it wasn't free - it was a big 51 cents per piece. I spotted exactly what I wanted in 2 large pieces. It isn't wood, exactly, but it looks like wood, even has grain. It looked too long to put in the tiny car, so I asked if that stuff could be broken, and was assured it was easy to do, as that's why it was in the scrap pile in the first place. I didn't want to break it until I got it out to the car, though, so I'd have to pay for 3 pieces instead of 2. Yes, I'm that cheap. Nufo asked what I wanted it for, and I told him about my signs and our idea about having the least expensive wedding ever. He was interested and asked some questions. I told him about the blog and he said, "You don't need a blog, you need to write a book!" Glad he was nice enough to carry my purchase to the cash register, because the cashier took a little convincing that my treasure was only going to be a grand total of $1.09. She either finally believed him or just didn't care anymore and rang me up, then Nufo toted my stuff out to the car, snapped the larger piece in half and loaded it in. I may enlist Erin's creative talent to help me paint the actual signs, and I love that I won't need to use power tools to cut them down to size!
Maybe I'm psychic - sometimes Jerry says I am but I know he's just joking. Woke up with a splitting headache while staying at my sister's and the feeling of dread that I was going to be late for my appointment. Mom got Jill and me a wonderful gift for Christmas - a massage package from a local spa! Of course, when I woke up the clock on my side of the bed said 7 a.m., so I was okay to go back to sleep. Besides, I never sleep past 9 anyway. I wake back up at 10 and figure I'd been really tired because of work, so as I was lying there contemplating running to get everyone sandwiches before heading off to the spa, Jerry jolts up and asks me what time it is. I look at the glowing red numbers and tell him it's only 10. That's when he tells me it's 11 on the clock on his side. I grab my cell phone for an unbiased 3rd opinion and get 11. Damn you, Ben Franklin and your daylight savings time! Jill changed every clock but the one I was using! I bolted out of bed, threw on some clothes and was headed out the door as fast as I could to meet Jill. We decided we'd like to go at the same time and asked them to schedule it that way. When we got there, the entire thing was done in separate rooms, so we might as well have not changed up our schedules to be sure this could be some sister time. The massage therapist comes out to greet me and asks how I'm doing. I'm not one to mince words, so I tell her I've got a headache and feeling kinda stressed. "Maybe you'd like to reschedule for another day?" Is she crazy? The massage should relieve the stress, and maybe the headache (although it was from pollen). I tell her no, I'd like to go ahead and have my treatments, please. This place apparently only had one room with a shower, so I was the lucky girl who got it first. She told me to strip down to my undies and lie on my back on the table under the sheets so she could do the scrub. I was rubbed with a sea salt almond oil paste that felt good until she hit my legs. Holy cow, that was rough! I'm directed to go shower so she can do my wrap. I go into the shower room and try to manipulate my underpants in such a way as to get them off without making a salt deposit. It was impossible, so I shook them out in the shower hoping to dislodge most of the salt. Now it's time for the wrap. I put the towel around myself and slide the door open. I ask her if I need to put my undies back on. In my mind it wouldn't make sense, and I'm no prude, but since she had me keep them on during that salt scrub I had no idea. She acted uncomfortable and told me I didn't need to. Okey, dokey, I get on the table and get ready for that wrap. I've seen them on TV shows and movies, I kinda know how it's supposed to go. It didn't go like that at all. She had me lie on my back and brushed me with some kind of herbal powder on my legs and arms. Then she had me sit straight up while she applied it to my back. Why she couldn't have me roll over and put it on my back is a mystery to me. Once my back was slathered she says, "Okay, you can go shower off." Where's the wrap? Since I hadn't had one before, I thought maybe that's how this particular one was done. I shower once again then have to head to another room for my massage. So, apparently Jill got the massage first then the wrap. The massage was good when I finally received it, and once it was over I waited a bit for Jill to come out and we compared notes. Turns out she got wrapped up in several layers of sheets and got to lie there in her powder. So, all that time I was waiting for her to come give me that massage she was taking some kind of break, I guess. I called Monday morning and spoke to the office manager, who apologized and offered me a free scrub and wrap so I know how it can be done right, and not with the same therapist, either. I'm going to schedule that a day or 2 before the wedding. Hopefully it'll be done correctly and I won't break out!
Went shopping with Jerry, Jill and the girls yesterday. Jill was on the hunt for her matron of honor dress. The first place we hit was the bridal shop where I picked up Marilyn and Erin's $10 dresses. For some reason the dresses that cost $10 were few and far between, and then to find them in one of our several wedding colors was about impossible. Lots of pink and brown available, which reminds me of a box of assorted chocolates. She finally found one in the right colors but in a size that was too large for her (12). It was really cute, tea length, black with a white band across the top with white straps. She could have worn it after the wedding, too. So she takes it into the dressing room and yells out the door, "Can someone help me zip this? It isn't going on. This can't be right - that's not even my size!" I try the zipper to no avail. Finally the sales girl floats back in our direction. I ask, "Are the sizes here smaller, like vintage dresses (where a 12 would really be more like a 2)?" She says they aren't, then looks at the dress. "Oh, that's a junior bridesmaid dress - that's for a child." I start laughing as the wave of relief washes over Jill's face. I pull up the tag - nowhere on it does it state that this dress is for a child. Nice. After that we head to the mall, but all they've got are super-mini dresses or over-the-top sparkly prom dresses. Although she didn't find what she wanted everyone had a good time. We did find Jerry a nice shirt for his black wool suit that we ordered from overstock.com, which was a grand total of $59.99 with free shipping. It'll get here tomorrow, and I'm optimistic it'll be a good fit. While at the mall I also went by the makeup counter where that fabulous makeup artist, Tim, works, but unfortunately he was out to lunch. One of the pinch-faced ladies who also works there and seemed annoyed that he was the one I wanted to talk to finally relented and gave me his business card. I called him when I got home and as of now it's too early to book and appointment with him, so hopefully I'll remember to call back 3 weeks before the event when he'll know his schedule. And, he says it's no charge! I think I'll try to remember my false eyelashes to see if he can stick those suckers on, too, because I have the worst time trying to get them on. Little by little we're whittling away at the things that need to be done before the wedding. I hope we can keep up the pace!
Ever wake up with one of those headaches that feels 3-D, sitting in the center of your poor brain, pushing it's way towards your eyeball as if that were the path of least resistance to escape your head? If not, you're lucky. Me, not so much. That's how I welcomed daylight savings time, minus one hour of sleep and plus a screaming headache. Wouldn't have been so bad if I could have just hibernated in bed for a couple of hours, but I had to get to work. Had a much better day the day before - even got some free stuff! Okay, one was a set of funnels, and I haven't figured out a way to use them for the wedding yet, but the other was a square candle stand painted a garish gold with fleur-de-lis all around. Brought it home and painted it a less garish fuchsia and highlighted the fleur-de-lis with pink. Now it can be used on the buffet table to hold a bowl or something. We also got a free lunch, but you get what you pay for and we got sticky spaghetti noodles, watery sauce and skunky tea. Oh, well. Held me over until we got home and could get a snack to eat. Also hit a book store that was going out of business (what a shame). Erin got several Manga books for ten cents each - not bad considering they usually sell for $10, and I picked up a couple of books for Jerry that I think he'll enjoy. He's so well read; I really admire that about him, among the thousands of other things that make him wonderful. Only 75 days until the wedding, and it can't come soon enough!
I may be slacking on my blog entries, but I'm certainly busy with the actual wedding. That's much better than the other way around. I have made a little ring bearer's pillow, finished both Marilyn's and Erin's dresses (which don't look as good on the hanger as they do on the people, so no posting of that picture here). I also printed up a few invites for the people who don't have email (like my grandparents). I also made some more decorations. We're going to hang record albums from the ceiling, so I made about a dozen strands of them with the help of some fishing wire. Hey, they were free and that seemed like a good thing to do with them. When we're done with them, maybe my friend Ruth would like to take them with her so they can be used for our class reunion. I'm all about recycling! On top of the records, along with Marilyn's help I made several dozen paper hearts. If you want directions on how to make those, please see my earlier post. I just used magazine paper strips instead of ribbon and stapled them instead of using floral wire. I'd pat myself on the back but over the last 5 days or so I've had a pinched nerve between my discs at the level of my shoulder blades. It seems to get better for a while then comes right back. Friday I had a really bad spell and Jerry fixed me right up with a great massage. I felt fine for the rest of that day and all day Saturday, but woke up this morning with the same problem. Having to work with back pain is no fun, so my work day is gonna feel even longer than usual. At least I've got several wedding to-do projects out of the way!