Who needs school anyway?

Today was a busy busy day for me and my mama.   First, we stopped off and Joann's to see what fabric we could find to make belts for the girl's dresses.  [They're a floral print, so we thought adding some fabric around the waist and tying a bow in the back would dress them up a little bit.] There is a smokey blue color in the dress that would look nice if we brought it out in the guy's ties and the tablecloths.  Who knew matching a particular shade of blue was so darn difficult??  We walked up and down every aisle of that store, and nothing seemed to look right.  So, we started pulling other colors to match the dress, and we found a nice shade of pink that looked great...and green...and ivory...and burnt orange.... basically every color but the one we originally wanted.

Without committing to a particular color, we left the store and went to Party Pro Inc in Riverside to look at linens.   Of course, there was no shade of blue that matched the dress, so we landed on green.  Now, I am a little skeptical of the color choice.  I never would have chosen green for our tablecloths....never ever. But we only have about a month left and decisions must be made!  Fortunately, I have such an intelligent maid of honor.  She suggested renting chair sashes for the girls dresses instead of making/buying belts.  How clever is that??   I tried one on, and surprisingly it looked pretty good.  So I rented all 7 of them for $14!     The consultant was so great, and gave us a great deal.   All of our linens (35 tables), table skirts, sashes and delivery... total cost:  $520.

After that, I went back to Joann's and bought wooden numbers I am going to use for the tables.  My plan is to do a faux crackle paint finish on them to make them look vintage....we shall see how they turn out! Total cost: $45

Mom and I did some shopping after that...and she found her dress!  She is going to look  so beautiful :]

Later, we met with our videographer, Joseph, from Cutting Edge Video.  I can't wait to actually see the video so I can watch Matt and I get married.   It will probably make me cry all over again. :]  Luckily, this cost doesn't come out of the budget.  We originally weren't going to have a videographer, but my mom really wanted one. Total cost: $1000

It was a long day, but very productive :]   Tomorrow, we are going to look at suits for the guys and get our marriage certificate (whoooohooo!), Saturday I am meeting with the florist, and Sunday its pre-marital counseling.  Some where in there I need to write out all of the Thank You cards for my bridal shower guests as well.   Oh yeah, and write a couple papers... :/
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They're here!

Engagement pictures are up!   If you would like to see all of them, visit our photographer's blog.  There is Part I & Part II, and make sure to leave comments on the blog because if we get enough, we will get free prints! It only takes a minute, and you would bless us greatly :]

Hope all of you are having a blessed Friday. It's such a beautiful day, I think I might just do homework in the park. :]

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Blessed Beyond Measure

This past weekend I had my bridal shower.  Not only was it fun, but I realized just how blessed I am.  I seriously have the BEST friends ever.  I know everyone says that...but my friends are radiant.  They shine with confidence, humility, beauty, and most importantly, God's love.  Having them all in one room was so special to me, especially because this whole wedding planning things takes up all of my time and I haven't had much girl time.  I was also blessed by my family & future family to be! They are all so supportive and wonderful.  So to all who came, thank you so much.  It meant to much to me.

My mama and mama-to-be! :]
I adore these women.

Sheesh, I just LOVE women.  There is something about femininity that captures our hearts and souls.  Their beauty resonates.  While in their presence and a part of their fellowship, I feel a sense of wholeness, as if I am fulfilling a purpose.  I have been so blessed to have a relationship with multiple Godly women to speak truth, wisdom, and love into my life.  I hope to mature in the Lord as they have, and Proverbs 31 is my guide:

A good woman is hard to find, 
   and worth far more than diamonds.
Her husband trusts her without reserve, 
   and never has reason to regret it.
Never spiteful, she treats him generously 
   all her life long.
She shops around for the best yarns and cottons, 
   and enjoys knitting and sewing.
She's like a trading ship that sails to faraway places 
   and brings back exotic surprises.
She's up before dawn, preparing breakfast 
   for her family and organizing her day.
She looks over a field and buys it, 
   then, with money she's put aside, plants a garden.
First thing in the morning, she dresses for work, 
   rolls up her sleeves, eager to get started.
She senses the worth of her work, 
   is in no hurry to call it quits for the day.
She's skilled in the crafts of home and hearth, 
   diligent in homemaking.
She's quick to assist anyone in need, 
   reaches out to help the poor.
She doesn't worry about her family when it snows; 
   their winter clothes are all mended and ready to wear.
She makes her own clothing, 
   and dresses in colorful linens and silks.
Her husband is greatly respected 
   when he deliberates with the city fathers.
She designs gowns and sells them, 
   brings the sweaters she knits to the dress shops.
Her clothes are well-made and elegant, 
   and she always faces tomorrow with a smile.
When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say, 
   and she always says it kindly.
She keeps an eye on everyone in her household, 
   and keeps them all busy and productive.
Her children respect and bless her; 
   her husband joins in with words of praise:
"Many women have done wonderful things, 
   but you've outclassed them all!"
Charm can mislead and beauty soon fades. 
   The woman to be admired and praised 
   is the woman who lives in the Fear-of-God.
Give her everything she deserves! 

   Festoon her life with praises!

  I may be most appreciative of women because for so long, I despised them. Growing up, girls weren't friends, they were enemies.   It wasn't until my junior year in high school that I began to realize that there were girls out there like me, desiring more from life than being popular and going to parties. When I look at the influences most other young adults allow to creep into their lives, I can't help but cry.  This world fights to break us down by building us up on lies.   It is blinding my generation more than any of those proceeding.  WAKE UP! Satan is real and his deception is like no other.  Seek truth and it will set you free! Stop being a slave to this world.  Find your purpose. And to all of you women out there:

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith;

be women of courage; be strong. 
Do everything in love.

1 Corinthians 16:13-14

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DIY: Ruffled Strawberries

Remember the cake I made for my first craft party? It looked pretty good, but the frosting was WAY too sweet...Of course, everyone who tried it politely pushed their globs of unwanted frosting to the side of their plates.  I decided to try it again, so I volunteered to make the cake for my Bridal Shower.   I found a recipe for strawberry frosting on food.com and decided to try it out.

Initial ingredients included: Powdered sugar, butter, and strawberries (fresh or frozen)

 I pureed the strawberries in the food processor for two reasons: (1) I didn't want chunky frosting, and (2) I used a piping bag to decorate so I needed the frosting to flow smoothly through the tip.

Next I added the strawberries to my powdered sugar & butter mixture...and vuala! 

The scrumptious strawberry frosting was still too sweet, so I added salt and some flour.  It tasted just right... but I needed about three times that amount.  I made a my second batch and it still wasn't enough (this cake takes lots of frosting!).  By this time, I was running low on supplies, so I had to get creative.   *Make sure to refrigerate your frosting if you are using fruit.

My final recipe:

7 1/2 cups Powdered sugar
1 1/4 cups Butter
1 1/4 cups Strawberries
1 1/6 cups (1/2 cup + 2/3 cup)Flour 
1/8 tsp. Salt

It turns out that the extra flour made this frosting quite heavy.  While decorating, I noticed my ruffles started sinking! (thats why the bottom half of the cake looks melted)  So, I had to stick it in the refrigerator for a bit to harden up. After multiple trips to and from the fridge, the cake was finished!  The cake was a hit and the perfect amount! 

No globs of frosting left over on people's plates = success :]

My mom collects Precious Moments, and this particular one has a boy proposing to a girl.  :]  On my actual wedding cake, my cake topper is going to be a Precious Moments bride & groom that my great-grandmother gave to my mom to put on her wedding cake.  Total cost: $15

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Engagement Photos!

I am thrilled that Matt and I had the opportunity to have our pictures taken my Jacob and Christin Willis from We Heart Photography.  We drove to Ramona in San Diego county, which has tons of open fields and wildflowers (well, probably weeds) that served as great rustic backdrops.  Here are a couple pictures they have posted so far.  I will post more on our wedding website when they are ready :]

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DIY: Pleasant Surprise

I went to Joann's to buy a large paper maché  "&" sign for the engagement shoot.  I thought it would be cute to hold in between Matt and I, but to my disappointment, they only had letters.  So I had to get creative.  I began picking up letters of different shapes and sizes and laying them out on the floor [good thing they weren't very busy]. I decided to spell out "Lovebirds" to go along with the theme.  I ended up spending a little more than I intended to [9 letters do cost more than one "&" sign], but I think it was worth it.  :]

Here are a few short steps to one of my DIY projects incase you'd like to do something similar at home.

I bought wooden letters about six inches tall and painted them an ivory color.

I wanted these letters to go along with the vintage look, so I used a lace window panel I found at a garage sale for $1.  I cut off the casing at the top, which gave me more than enough fabric to work with.  I made sure to cut to the left of the seam so it wouldn't unravel.  

Next, I traced by letters.  I wanted the fabric to cover only the surface of the letter.  If you want your fabric to wrap around the entire letter, make sure to leave more room. 

Then cut it out! I left about a quarter of an inch from my trace line, just in case the fabric moved.

After that, I glued the lace onto the letters with rubber cement glue.  I'm sure there is a better glue to use, but that is all I had and it served its purpose [at least for the time being].

Ta daaaa! 

I thought they turned out nicely :]

Total cost: $15

I was unsure of how we were going to use them for the shoot, but Christin and Jacob were creative and hopefully got some cool shots.  We are going to hang the letters at the reception as well, hopefully above our sweetheart table. :]


I can't believe I am going to be a WIFE next month

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