#mcwed part 5

After we ate, we did our rounds talking to everyone and then it was time for cake! I didn’t even think about how awkwardly the cake table was placed, that’s where they had it on the layout…but it was kind of off in the back corner.

Wedding - Reception
Cake cutting is serious business.

Wedding - Reception
I fed Keith a small piece of cake and he tried to feed me this giant bite, hence my face. And his face. Just look at that mischievous grin.

Wedding - Reception

 

The cake was awesome, by the way. Lemony and delicious and I wish I had a piece right now.

 

wedding details

 

 

After that, it was time to dance. Keith and I danced to Adele – One and Only which is also the soundtrack to our wedding video trailer.

 

Keith actually picked the song. What a sweetie. I had picked something else, but he said it was too depressing. Haha.

Wedding - Reception

Wedding - Reception

Wedding - Reception

 

Then Keith and his mom danced to Pearl Jam – Future Days


Wedding - Reception

 

Wedding - Reception

 

Then my stepdad and I danced to Bellstop – Serenity

It took me a really long time to decide on a song…but then I had a stroke of genius to use a Bellstop song. Bellstop is composed of my cousin, Runar and his partner. Runar is my cousin on my dad’s side and lives in Iceland.  I thought it was a wonderful and subtle way to give a nod to my dad. There were lots of tears during this dance for sure.

 

Wedding - Reception

 

I had requested a photo of the entire wedding…so after our dances…they shut off the music to get everyone out on the floor for a photo.
Wedding - Reception

Love it. Most of my nearest and dearest. And then our DJ seamlessly went into “We are Family” and the partying began.

 

..to be continued…

All photos by Jonathan and Tiffany Cooper of hot metal studio.

 

life stuff

school work + snack. #vscocam

Sooo…life.

I am nearing the tail end of my 6 week summer course – GIS, GPS and Computer Methods and while I am iffy on the class, I seriously love this 6 week format. We have class twice a week and it is supposed to be for 3 hours, but my professor somehow never got that memo, so we’ve been getting out after 2 hours. It’s 6:00-9:15 but the latest I have ever stayed was 8:45 last week. He even cancelled our last class because he realized he didn’t need to go over one lecture. So I basically have two more classes and then I’m done. Awesome. That also means I have less than a week to finish this final project…but whatever.

My partner and I are doing some mapping of Pittsburgh bridges. It’s kind of neat, but nowhere near as cool as my project idea. I wanted to map out the Ludacris song “Area Codes.” It would be brilliant. We could map the area codes in relation to the places he has gone on tour in the time since the song came out and it would be hilarious. I ran the idea by my partner and just got a blank look in return. Turns out she had never heard the song. Never! What!

So we came up with something else and then the next week she told me she had gone home and downloaded the song, haha.

 

My friend Chelsey had a good point in that she (my partner) probably wasn’t alive when the song came out. Too true.

I was taking this GIS course in hopes that maybe I would love it and I could go for the GIS certificate. I hear it’s a pretty in-demand field right now and sounded pretty cool. But the class is….kind of a bore. I think I blame the prof more than anything. We spend an hour being lectured to and then he just sets us loose to do something in the program. Which he never showed us how to do….so we sit there and fumble around until he guides us through in like 5 minutes and I feel like I have learned nothing, because I haven’t. Also he goes entirely too fast so he has to repeat every step 4 times when he could just SLOW DOWN and solve that problem.

So I think I might not want to go through with the certificate. I also couldn’t finish it in the time I want to have left at Pitt…and it would involve an internship which does not jive well with having a full-time job, so….blah.

But! That frees up the classes I have left to take. After this summer class ends, I need 3 more classes. One of them has to be an Anthropology class, but it is not offered at a time I can take in the fall, so I have to hope that it will be offered in the spring when I can. If not, my advisor is going to have to actually advise me for once and figure that out. That frees up two fall classes for me. I was going to take Cultural Resource Management but that feels like a waste if I’m not trying to go in that direction. Again, not enough time left at Pitt.

So I think I’m just going to take two blow-off classes, if I can find them. Ideally, they will both be online which will solve my issue of missing 2.5 weeks of class when we go to Hawaii. Right now I’m on a waiting list for Russian Fairy Tales and some Intro to Sociology class….but if I can find something that sounds like more fun, that could change.

Pitt Alums…easiest/best class you took? I probably won’t be able to fit it into my schedule, but maybe! Any suggestions are welcome!

#mcwed part 4

When we last left off, the ceremony had ended! We were married! Everyone was crying! Hooray!

Since our ceremony and reception were in the same place, there was no travel time (duh) and I decided to have a cocktail hour before the reception officially started. We had taken all of our posed pictures earlier in the day, but this also gave us some time for some family photos.

Wedding - Reception

So we did that while the rest of the guests went inside and were treated to some drinks and snacks including mini Primanti’s style sandwiches and mini pierogi. Yes.

 

 

wedding details

 

That was my favorite part about the entire menu. I didn’t care what else people ate, they had to have those apps! But my one complaint…they were supposed to be on little round bread….not quartered big bread. But I’m sure no one else knew or cared.
wedding details

Haha, one of my favorites. Forget the rings artfully placed in the flowers, throw mine on a sandwich.

Around 5, we headed back outside to have a more formal entrance.

The bridal party walked into Regina Spektor – Us

And Bradley went ahead and stole the show.

 

Wedding - Reception

 

He was freaking out a bit, so when my SIL came out to comfort him, I told her to just go ahead and walk in with him and Giana, he calmed down instantly and went all mini-politician on us. Hahah, I love this so much.

We threw open the big barn doors for this…perk of getting married in a barn!

Then Keith and I walked in to Kelly Clarkson – Tie it up


Not a huge country fan, but a huge Kelly fan.
Wedding - Reception

Wedding - Reception

 

We joined up with the bridal party and it wasn’t planned for them all to stand up there…I think I might have told them to sit down, but I’m so glad they did. Such a wonderful moment standing up there with them.

Wedding - Reception

 

Then we all sat down and Keith’s best man Dave gave a speech and my man of honor gave a speech. Dave’s speech was very sweet. I’ve seen him give 2 best man speeches so far and he somehow is able to do it all off the cuff. I did tear up a bit.

Wedding - Reception

He started off by showing off the socks I had purchased for all the groomsmen haha, I love those socks.

Then Ryan came up and gave a speech…and I was terrified. Although not as terrified as he was! As evidenced by this photo taken while Dave was giving his speech. To anyone else, it may look like boredom, but I knew the true terror running through those veins.

Wedding - Reception

And then he surprised me completely by not giving a crass, obnoxious speech that embarrassed me, he wrote a poem that was hilarious and heartwarming and full of inside jokes…this was my reaction to one of them:

Wedding - Reception
Then it was time to eat. Everyone always says you don’t eat at your own wedding and I swore I wasn’t going to let that happen. I paid for it, I was going to eat, dammit! And then I ate like 3 bites. Haha, so no, you probably won’t eat at your wedding. We had time! I just wasn’t hungry.

…to be continued…

As before, all photos by Jonathan and Tiffany Cooper of hot metal studio.

life update #basketballmoon

So I kind of lost some steam on the #mcwed posts. I will have to finish up with the reception and posed photos because there are so many I love and want to highlight! Life has taken a turn for the insane lately (in a good way!) and although I’m not ready to spill those beans yet, it will be coming.

So what has been going on….

Loretta and I celebrated our one-month anniversary, and we are very happy together. I love the cloth seats, the heated seats which I will admit to turning on in the mornings even though it is July, and her beautiful shiny exterior. She has a bit less raw power than Henrietta had, but I am having fun with the paddle shifters.

Had a lovely 4th of July at my mom’s house even though I ended up in a hoodie and covered in a blanket. It was nice that it wasn’t 95 and sweltering but yikes! Keith and I left before the fireworks but somehow planned it perfectly and drove through no fewer than 7 township’s fireworks on our way up 79. At one point near Bridgeville we could see 4 different displays at the same time. And didn’t have to hear any. My kinda show.

Also had a great time the next day at Giana’s 4th birthday party! It’s rare to see family two days in a row so it’s always extra nice. And the twix cupcakes I made were extra nice, too!

I thought I had more news, but apparently not…except the most exciting thing is that we booked our flights for our honeymoon! Ahhh! I’m so excited I could puke.

Pitt announced that they’re playing the University of Hawaii on Nov 21 so we’re flying to Maui November 20th. I’m looking into Airbnb’s for the first 3 days then on Nov 23rd we head to the Maui Sheraton for the Maui Invitational with the rest of the basketball fans. We’re there from Sunday-Friday which includes a few tournament games and a Thanksgiving Luau! Then the day after Thanksgiving we hop on a plane for the Big Island. We’re there Friday-Friday and then we fly home.

I am sooooooooo excited! I have so many things planned. Definitely hitting up some beaches and breweries and probably a coffee plantation even though we both hate coffee and snorkeling and black sand beaches and green sand beaches and volcanoes! (Oh, and basketball. I still wish the basketball games were outside. That would be great. Let’s play some beach basketball.)

Trying to keep a nice mix of seeing the sights and doing nothing. On our last two vacations (Cancun and Isla Mujeres) we barely left the resort. We’ll only be at a resort for half our time on Maui and none of our time on Hawaii – thinking of splitting our time between two Airbnb’s there, so that will pretty much force us to get out and about.

People keep asking if I feel any different being married and the answer is a big fat no. I now have Keith’s last name…but other than that nothing has changed. We have been together 5 years and are coming up on 5 years of living together; he taught me how to drive, we’ve moved twice, bought a house, got a dog, already have joint bank accounts…a piece of paper and two metal bands haven’t changed anything. But I do like looking down and seeing my wedding band *so sparkely* and seeing his ring on his hand. Being married is great, but being not-married was great too!

#mcwed, part 3

Taking a break from the details and getting to what everyone wants to see – the ceremony.

Keith and I took advantage of the fact that we live in Pennsylvania and had a Quaker self-uniting ceremony. What that means is we didn’t need anyone to officiate our wedding and declare us married, we could do that ourselves – we just needed two witnesses.

But we did want a sort of traditional ceremony, so we asked my cousin Adam to officiate. He had never done anything like it before, but did a wonderful job. The caveat to him performing the ceremony was me writing it.

After googling for weeks, I ended up buying a book – The Wedding Ceremony Planner - and I highly recommend it if you find yourself needing to write a wedding ceremony. It takes you through a ceremony, the typical order of things and then gives you options to play around with to make it religious, secular, traditional, modern. I used it for the structure and some of the wording, but I also used some internet sources and rearranged some stuff. I’m really happy with how it turned out.

So when we left off from getting ready, Ryan, Jason and I were zooming up to the barn to meet Keith. Since I wanted to do all of our pictures beforehand, we did a first look. It would have been sweet to have us see each other for the first time when I walked down the aisle, but it just made more sense to have all the photos done beforehand.

As before, all photos by hot metal studio.

Wedding - People

Wedding - People
this is my “tada!” face

Wedding - People

After we were sufficiently first looked, we took some photos, then the bridal party joined for more photos and then we moved down to the basement until the ceremony began. We had drinks and snacks and although we were down there for longer than planned – whoops! it wasn’t too bad!

And I had an onsite makeup artist.

Wedding - Reception

 

The song that started the ceremony was Regina Spektor’s cover of Real Love…

At the end of this song, Adam, Keith and Dave (best man) walked upstairs.

The rest of the bridesmaids and groomsmen walked down to Death Cab for Cutie – I Will Follow You into the Dark…

Mayyyybe a little morbid, but beautiful, nonetheless.

Then I was escorted down the aisle by my mom and stepdad to Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova’s cover of Into the Mystic…this was one of the first songs I settled on, love it so much. I could have populated the entire wedding playlist with their music.

As soon as the song started to play (still outside) I started to cry. And I didn’t stop until the ceremony was over. But luckily I was only crying out of my left eye, which only Keith and Adam could see, haha.

Wedding - Ceremony

Wedding - Ceremony

Wedding - Ceremony

Wedding - Ceremony

Wedding - Ceremony

Then, 15 minutes later, we were wed!

Oh, I stopped the ceremony to take a picture on my phone. I had seen someone else do that online but with their real camera. I didn’t have anywhere to stash a dSLR and I unfortunately use my phone for more photos than my camera, so I thought it would be a fun thing to do. I didn’t tell anyone I was doing it, except Adam and Ryan, who had my phone, so it was pretty funny to see everyone’s reactions.

Wedding - Ceremony

The best part of the entire ceremony, minus being married and stuff was how many people cried! Haha. I didn’t want to be alone in my tears and I definitely wasn’t. Keith even cried. That was really the best part. These are some of my absolute favorite photos in life.

Wedding - Ceremony

Wedding - Ceremony

Next up, the reception! And some posed photos! And more details! Hooray!

#mcwed, part 2

One of my favorite parts about wedding planning…and the actual wedding were all the details. I spent hours and hours on things that most people would have ignored, but it made me happy! It made Keith a little crazy, but oh well.

I’ve seen lots of flack lately about “Pinterest weddings” and how people are “So glad Pinterest didn’t exist when I got married,” and it kind of bothers me. I think Pinterest was a great tool to get ideas, to source items and just for eye candy.

Could I have planned my wedding without Pinterest? Absolutely. I think the problem might come in when people want their wedding to look exactly like those featured on Pinterest, but I think that’s a problem with the internet in general. I had to stop looking at my wedding photographer’s website ~2 weeks before the wedding because everything they posted was so beautiful I didn’t think mine could live up to that. And I think that’s the problem.

You should be striving for *your* ideal wedding, not Martha Stewart Living’s ideal wedding. If those happen to overlap in some areas, wonderful! But don’t get bent out of shape because you didn’t have time to make xyz or you didn’t have the perfect wedding favor. At the end of the day, you’ll be married and that’s pretty much all anyone will remember.

That said, I am a very DIY, hands on person. So many items I took inspiration from online, but made myself. But there did come a point a few weeks before the wedding where I was just *done* and started to outsource things.

 

(As before, all photos by hot metal studio)

wedding details

wedding details

My dress was from David’s Bridal. I tried on 7, went back and forth between 2 before deciding on this one. I had started to have second thoughts a few months before the wedding (I bought the dress 1+ year before) but once I actually got it on, it was perfect.

 

wedding details

My shoes were from Modcloth. I had bought a pair of teal wedges a long time ago, but then bought these on a whim. I liked that they had straps and felt they would be a little easier to walk in. (I don’t do heels). They were great. And cheap.

wedding details

My jewelry was Swarovski and a gift from Keith’s mom. It was wonderfully sparkley, but simple enough that I could wear it again. And I have already worn it again!

wedding details

Our venue was the barn at Richland Community Park. It was *very* affordable, beautiful and allowed us to have our ceremony and reception in one location which was a HUGE thing for me. We had many people driving an hour or more, I didn’t want them to have to do any more driving between ceremony and reception or for me to have to deal with setting up and coordinating two venues, it was perfect. Highly recommend.

wedding details

We set the barn up on Friday and after the ceremony, everyone just grabbed a chair and moved it to the tables and tada! Transformation complete!

wedding details

wedding details
Hundreds and hundreds of paper flowers. Made by me. Except I did panic a few months before the wedding and bought some from etsy, but they were a bit different. If I could go back in time, I would start earlier and make 2-3x as many flowers, I think it would have looked amazing with them crowded on the table, but I just didn’t have time. I worked from the tutorial here, though hers are a bit more polished. I think it would have worked better with slightly thinner paper (I used cardstock). I am still happy with them and made sure to bring them all back home with me. Where they are still sitting. In a garbage bag. I am emotionally attached.

wedding details
This was from the sweetheart table. I wish all the tables could have been that full. I also quickly ditched the grey flowers. That cardstock was way too thick.

wedding details

Since we didn’t have any sort of *altar* I wanted something to put behind us as decoration and since we would be eating there too, it could serve double duty. I bought this banner from PomLove on etsy and was super underwhelmed once it was all fluffed. I almost scrapped the whole idea but after deciding to double it up, I ended up really liking how it looked. Nice and simple.

wedding details

wedding details

Guestbook was also a DIY project. Saw something similar on etsy for $200. I bought at $20 Ikea frame, an $8 heart punch and went to town. I’ll admit I did redo it 3 times becuase I refused to measure and everything ended up crooked, but I measured the last time and I think it turned out well!

 

This is getting a little long, so more later!

#mcwed, part 1

As of today, Keith and I have been married for a month! It’s hard to believe it has been that long. People keep asking me if it feels any different and the answer is a big fat no. I guess when you have lived together for 5 years, have a house, a dog, joint bank accounts, a little piece of paper doesn’t change much. I finally got my new social security card, so I’m in the process of officially changing my name, and that’s the only part that feels a little different. But enough yapping, let’s get to some pictures! I’m not going to *try not to* post them all here, just some highlights. The rest will end up on facebook.

The day began early. I woke up around 7:45, grabbed the bag I had packed, smooched the still sleeping Keith, grabbed Daisy, and my father in law picked us up.

Got to my in-laws approximately 3 minutes later, and Ashley was already there, prepping her hair supplies. She got me in some hot rollers while we waited for the rest of my bridal party to arrive. Jonathan and Tiffany arrived and Jason arrived and my very own reality show was born.

All photos by hot metal studio.

Getting Ready
Keith’s mom putting some finishing touches on our cake.

Getting Ready
Getting beautified while Jason films on.

Getting Ready
Brittney is the brow guru and this photo is proof.

Getting Ready
Ryan and Elyse brought champagne.

Getting Ready
This one makes me laugh.

Getting Ready
Falsies.

Getting Ready
Misting.

Getting Ready

Getting Ready
Daisy was bored.

Getting Ready

Getting Ready
Daisy gets all the love.

Getting Ready
Jonathan snuck down to take some pictures of Keith. Man my grey walls look good. I wish I had remembered to take those sheets off the couch though.

Getting Ready
I love this one. Daisy loves her mama.

Getting Ready
Hair time!

Getting Ready

Getting Ready

Getting Ready

Getting Ready

I started to get a little nervous about time at this point. For some reason I thought my wedding would be the one wedding to actually run on the schedule I had set it. I enlisted my mom and Brooke to help me get my dress on.

Getting Ready

Getting Ready
This is my, “I hope it zips” face.

Getting Ready

Getting Ready

Getting Ready
Then Ashley came up to put my veil on, and show Brooke how to remove it.

Getting Ready

Getting Ready

Then I got my lips on and Ryan, Jason and I zoomed up to the barn to meet Keith.

…to be continued.

Hello, Loretta!

So I am mostly all recovered from the car accident. I am no longer sore and the headache has gone away almost completely. If I *think* about being hit, my head starts to hurt, but maybe that’s just psychosomatic.

I am also having some anxiety while driving which stems directly from the accident. If I happen to look in my rearview mirror and see someone advancing on me, I become really nervous that they aren’t going to stop. If I am stopped, I pretty much replay the moment of impact over and over, with my body going forward and then sliding back down the seat.

It’s nothing major, I am not afraid to drive, I just have to try not to think about those things and hopefully in time, I will stop dwelling.

I have full coverage insurance so they gave me a rental car and I rolled out of Enterprise in an Infiniti. I had no idea what an Infiniti was until the next day at work when some guy made a big deal over it. It’s a fun little car.

I got the report from the insurance about my car when they totaled it and the damages got to $8,000 and then they stopped the assesment. So who knows how much actual damage was done, but my car was not worth half of that, unfortunately. They cut me a check and Henrietta was towed off into the sunset.

We met up with my friend Sarah on Saturday to *look* at cars and a few hours later, I drove off the lot with Loretta!

I test drove a 2011 Honda Accord, Loretta and a 2011? Suzuki Kizashi. I liked the Honda enough but it was white with tan leather trim and it just wasn’t doing anything for me looks-wise. Also liked the Suzuki, but since they no longer make them, I worried about cost of repairs, it also felt less *solid* than the Subaru. The Subaru was my favorite on paper and since she had everything I wanted (sunroof, heated seats, CLOTH seats, AWD, superb safety ratings) it was an easy choice.

Also really liked the salesguy. He was nice, laid back, had all the info I wanted and absolutely no pressure. We talked about what we named our cars while Keith just looked on rolling his eyes and Sarah cracked up. I named Keith’s car for him on Saturday too, Patty. Haha.

But enough about me, say hello to Loretta! She’s a Legacy, had one previous owner, has 33k miles, we’re going to be very happy together.

photo 1

photo 2

At one point the finance guy asked, “How long will you be keeping the Subaru?” “Forever.”

 

 

 

baby deer friends

Came home from work last week and spotted these babes in the yard. It never gets old. Even if they do eat my plants.

 

baby deer friends

baby deer friends

baby deer friends

And then I was reading about white tailed deer and read that they have twins a majority of the time! It was like over 60% had twins, 12% had triplets. Can you imagine? No wonder there are so many deer! Go, biology, go!

RIP henrietta

And you guys thought I was joking about getting rid of that spider.

IMG_8278

Last night I was coming home from work. I stopped in order to turn left onto my street, but had to wait for some cars to pass. There were at least 4-5 cars and a flatbed truck so I was sitting there for a minute. Just as I was about to turn, since the coast was clear, I glanced into my rearview mirror and saw a truck barreling into me.

It was like in the movies. It got bigger and bigger and I hardly had a split second to think “What?” before he SLAMMED into me. Time slowed down. I was flung forward and back, when the car came to rest, I was so confused. I was laying back. My glasses, which had been on my face, were now behind my head.

I think I was partly in shock. I was shaking and crying and didn’t know what to do. The man who hit me came over to my door to ask if I was okay. I said I was and began to search for my phone. It was in a dock previously, but was nowhere to be found.

 

IMG_8273My sunroof was NOT open prior to the accident. I don’t even understand how that happened.

IMG_8274

 

I think that is the ash tray, which was previously in the dash, next to the steering wheel.

 

IMG_8276

 

While I brushed glass off of myself and searched for my phone, the old man called the police. Once I finally found my phone, I called Keith and he attempted to calm me down. While we waited for the police, the old man directed traffic and I sat on the guard rail crying.

IMG_8271

 

Once the police arrived, they asked if I needed an ambulance and then collected our information to make the report.

IMG_8270

IMG_8269

 

Those trees over there? My yard. That trunk? Gone.

IMG_8268

 

He hit me so hard my seat broke.

IMG_8266

 

The old man claimed that I stopped too quickly. The police officer, who was also an accident reconstruction specialist, told me that the old man pushed my car 55 feet. Both my back tires were flat.

I have no idea what the old man was doing. Maybe he looked down, maybe he was playing with the radio, but it was clear that he was going entirely too fast. I am pretty sure he didn’t even break. He just slammed into me. The police officer urged me to go to the ER.

When the tow truck came, they tried to pull mine onto the bed and his car came with, they were so tightly smashed.

I asked him if I could walk home, since my house was literally 50 yards away and he let me. When Keith got home a few minutes later we headed to the ER. I had to wear a collar and lay flat on my back until they cleared me. There was a dicey hour or two where I really had to pee, but wasn’t allowed to get up and my only option was a bedpan. I persevered though and made it. They did a CAT scan of my head and spine and I was cleared, but they gave me pain killers and muscle relaxers and two days off work.

I was able to sleep last night but as my dose of muscle relaxer is wearing off now, I feel really really bad. I’ve also been on the phone all morning with insurance people. Luckily, we both have the same carrier, so my deductible is waived. Which is great, because he was so obviously at fault.

It could have been a lot worse, there could have been another car in front of me that I could have hit. And if I was pushed 55ft, imagine the impact on another car in front of me.

I could have had Daisy in the backseat. I am buying her a harness immediately.

Keith said later that it sucks I put so much money in my car (hello, brand new transmission) thinking it would last another 5 years, but I said that if I had bought at new car instead, that one could have been creamed.

I could have been in the act of turning, which would have spun me into other traffic.

I could have been driving something that wasn’t as tank-like as the Honda. My backseat was entirely intact. Luckily there was no one in it, since they would be really hurting, but at least they would have survived.

He was an 80 year old man, his car sustained damage, but he was out and walking around after as well. He could have been hurt.

Baby’s first accident and please let it be her last.

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