#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 invitations

One of the first wedding things that I completed and was completely over the moon about was the invitations. I went back and forth forever on what I wanted them to look like. Did I want fancy, cute, whimsical, graphic, bold…I am pretty sure I spent a good year trying to decide. I looked at a few websites and pre-made invitations were SO EXPENSIVE I knew I needed to go at least semi-DIY. I looked all over etsy and nothing really struck me. Everything looked like something I could make myself in Photoshop, so I decided to do just that. I decided on a confetti theme. How hard is it to add some dots everywhere and pick a fancy text?

Hard. I am too embarrassed to post my invitation mock-up but it was sad. I actually really liked it at the time, but *spoiler alert* the invitations I purchased are worlds beyond. In comparison, mine were very flat and blah.

I was on etsy for the 12 millionth time when I came across Grace and Guy. They had a gold and pink confetti themed baby shower invite that was the cutest thing I had ever seen. I immediately emailed and asked if she would be able to change the colors and content for my wedding, and she so kindly ageed. I sent her all the deets and just sat back and waited. A few weeks later, I got my proofs, which I then printed and cut myself. It was a bit more work that way, but it was a freaking steal. I got bridal shower invites, wedding invites, direction cards, info cards, RSVPs, address labels, cupcake flags…in my custom colors for $43.00. Then all it took was a printer and a paper cutter. And you know I love crafts.

Probably over a year ago I bought envelopes and pocketfolds from Paper and More, they had great prices and their shipping was the cheapest by far. Which really counts when you are buying lots of heavy paper. I printed everything else on regular white cardstock and just assembled!

In hindsight, I should have had a better method for assembly. Keith’s friend Dave got two (2!) entire invitations. Keith’s other friend got two RSVP cards. Whoops. Better than none, right?

I almost didn’t use the address labels, but I’m so glad I did because they were the cutest part.

I had also cut out envelope liners and had planned on including little glassine envelopes filled with confetti, but I’m a one woman show and I just didn’t have time.

I also created the back of the RSVP card and that’s one of my crowning achievements. More on that, later.


wedding invitations

wedding invitations

wedding invitations

wedding invitations

wedding invitations

wedding invitations

The photographers would have taken nicer photos of the invites but I ran out (thanks to sending Dave two) and didn’t feel like making another set since I had my own pictures.

I also hated those wedding cake stamps but my envelopes were .02 oz too heavy for a regular stamp. I should have had some indication that names were supposed to go on the lines on the front of the card since I didn’t want the stupid M_____ thing, but we got back about a dozen without names. Luckily I could use context clues. (Name on envelope or number in party or what was written on the back). I should have numbered them, but I couldn’t find a place to do it unobtrusively and by the time I remembered I was OVER IT.

Overall I was thrilled with how they came out and thought they were a nice representation of the wedding: fun, playful, colorful, DIY baby.

pluses and minuses

+/- Wedding stuff is coming together. I have been incredibly stressed out about this. I am making paper flowers for decorations and although I had a bunch, I figured I needed 2-3x what I had and I just wasn’t sure it was going to happen. So I took about an hour this weekend and made a mock tablescape (the fact that I know the word tablescape kind of makes me want to puke). I laid out an assortment of flowers, counted them, did it again, counted again and now have a number of how many flowers I need. I then decided to bag them up by table. Turn out I have enough flowers for 3 complete tables. And I have 13 tables…wompwomp. I also was able to make 5 partial bags and put little cards in there with what they need. So then I’m sort of kind of halway done! Ish! Then I was able to make a list of all I need and I only need 292 more flowers! (Kill me.) This is about 20-30 flowers a week and it might be doable. If I get close, I will just put less on each table, it’s not an exact science. Knowing this number though was a huge help and now I am working toward a goal. Only time will tell if I actually make it!

wedding stuff. helper dog. #daisygram

daisy is a great helper

+ I also decided to outsource our wedding invitations. I have been pretty set on making them myself but I just couldn’t get anything that I loved. So I found someone on etsy who will make the digital files and I can print and cut them. I already have gotten back two proofs and I’m totally in love. Grace & Guy is the shop and they have been so great to work with.

+/- I took Daisy to Petco on Saturday. She really, really needed her nails cut and I figured she could get a bath while she was there. Keith was at a basketball game, so I had to take her on my own and she broke my heart. We get into the store and there was another dog in the little grooming room so I decided to wait outside of it. Daisy was shaking so hard, you could probably see it from 10 feet away. I felt like the worst human in the world. The other dog left and I went in and said that I was there for a bath/nail trim but she’s too scared, just trim the nails. The groomer convinced me that she would be okay and I hesitantly agreed and left. And felt horrible the whole time I was grocery shopping. But I picked up a wonderfully fresh and clean Daisy and I think she has forgiven me.

so fresh, so clean, so traumatized by the trip to the groomer. #daisygram

i don’t always make this face, but when i do i break hearts worldwide.

+ The semester is almost halfway over and I am excited but already dreading summer semester. Currently there is only one class I can take and I need two to graduate on schedule. On Monday, I am off work but have class and I was able to schedule 3 meetings to determine my future. I have a meeting with Career Services, my Anthropology advisor, and an advisor for the School of Education. I guess I’ll find out for real on Monday what my options are, if I am actually on track and maybe if there is something else to take this summer. Having one summer class would be a blessing, but that would push me back a whole semester, so it’s not really an option. Ugh.

sprinkles – crafty edition

1. I haven’t posted at all in August. I’m sorry/you’re welcome!

2. Classes FINALLY ended for me last Thursday. They start up again on the 26th. Not looking forward to it! I have started to get snippy at work when people mention back to school shopping. I have to go back too! Stop talking about it!

3. I recently switched out one of my classes for the fall so I will now have two classes on campus. I’ve done pretty well with managing one on-campus class and one online class, but the past two semesters of self-paced classes really really burnt me out. I was originally taking World Politics as self-paced but when I looked up and saw the books were over $200, I switched it out faster than you could say “capitalism.” I am now taking The Archaeologist Looks at Death and Japanese Society. Japanese Society is the one I just added and I am super pumped because it is a 100+ person lecture and it has been a long time since I could sit in the back of an auditorium and not have to speak.

4. My grand plans for my summer “vacation” were to get some painting in. Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaah. I have still not touched a paintbrush since January. I have, however, been cutting/folding/gluing the hell out of some cardstock. After months of trying to figure out table decoration for the wedding, I stumbled across this tutorial from one of my favorite blogs. I didn’t want to go to the trouble of actually painting the paper (although I’m sure it’s a lovely effect) so I just bought colored cardstock.

getting my craft on/drink on

It is very time consuming. The first batch of teal ones probably took about 10 hours split over 2 days. It is pretty mindless work though. I bought a stand for the iPad and just sit and watch shows. I finished up half a season of New Girl and probably 3/4 of a season of 2 Broke Girls (total guilty pleasure, it’s cheesy but I love it). I only burned myself once on the glue gun and that was while trying to reach behind it to pause the iPad.

box o paper flowers

The big ones use 3″ squares, the middle ones 2″ squares and the small ones 1″ squares. I like how the 1″ ones look best but I feel like they take the longest. Although that’s probaly not true since I just counted and all flowers average about ~15 petals so it’s all in my head I guess.

I haven’t had time to sit for 5 hour stretches but I’ve been doing a bit every night. I was sitting at work the other day and thinking how I wished I could bring in my papercutter/glue gun and get a little crafting in, when I remembered I could make different flowers!

paper flowers

These ones are a lot quicker and only require a drop of glue to hold them down, which I can do later at home. Non-stop crafting!

Now the only problem is, I only have about 40 flowers done and probably need a few hundred for the effect I want.

paper flowers

5. I’m running a 5k on Saturday! A real one! No colored cornstarch or tricks! I am only up to 20 minutes of running though and I run like a tortoise, so who knows how it will go. If you see in the news: “Girl dies after running 21 minutes and only making it half a mile,” that just might be me.

6. It is a lot of fun planning a wedding, and even more fun if you love surprises as much as I do. I am hesitant to share ANY details because I want to surprise everyone. I even have a few tricks up my sleeve that I haven’t shared with Keith. It’s gonna be awesome. Right now I am super struggling with the guest list. I have made two. All/nothing, it seems. I am really really torn on who to include and who not to. We have space restrictions at the venue and I never in a million years thought I’d have more than 100 people on the tentative list, but it turns out I do. If you’re reading this and it turns out I wasn’t able to invite you, please know that it was not a slight. And rest assured that there will be 14 hours of photographic coverage that I can share!

menu board

I was off work today, I had taken off to go camping but even though we didn’t go camping, I could not find the motivation to go to work. So I stayed home and got crafty!

I have been wanting to make a menu board for a while.

Source: sarahpotterphotography.com via Katrina on Pinterest

I’ve seen a bunch of them on pinterest and while adorable, I thought it would also help with menu planning/grocery shopping. My first goal was to make a list of 30 meals. Almost everything I cook results in leftovers, so 30 meals would mean we had enough meals to last a month+. I used a label template from Avery to type up the meals (also including leftovers, dinner out, order in). I also put the ingredients for each meal on the back. That way, when planning out that weeks meals, I can just pull them out and jot down my grocery list! Perfect! (Except one row got messed up and has the wrong ingredients but I didn’t realize it until today…oops.)

I was torn on whether I wanted to use a cork board or a magnetic board but everything was too plain. I did find a great chunky teal framed cork board on Target’s website, but it was 25$ plus shipping and that was a little much.  I went to Target today to see if they had anything interesting in the store and came across this stainless steel magnetic board for 9$. It was totally plain, but I liked that it was square and didn’t have an ugly frame.  Right next to the board, I found my inspiration. A 4 pack of washi tape and two sets of magnets all in coordinating teals/green/white.

Then I came home, sat on the couch with everything and the last three episodes of Bunheads (meh) and got to crafting. The most time consuming part was the meal cards. I had just printed them on white cardstock so they were really boring. I cut a piece of washi tape in half and added it to the top and bottom. The card holders are just two halves of a random little box, attached with double-sided tape. Everything else is held up by magnets!

menu board!

I think it’s pretty darn adorable, if I do say so myself! Now I just need to hang it in the kitchen! Altogether it was a pretty cheap craft.

9$ for the board
6$ for the magnets (3$ a pack)
4$ for 4 rolls of washi tape (lots left over)

19$ total!

Not too bad!

If I keep this up, I’m going to need a craft room!

goodbye, summer.

So we didn’t go camping this weekend, since the forecast called for rain all three days. And of course, I haven’t seen one single drop of rain. On Friday, we set up the tent just to make sure we could. So this was as much camping as we did.

tent dog

If you can’t tell from Daisy’s face, it was a little hot in there. On Saturday, we took Daisy for her yearly shots and she was super pumped to hear she lost 5lbs! She has been a little plump since we got her and I am pretty terrible with giving her table scraps, but lately Keith has been stopping me. We’ve also been taking a lot of family walks and it seems like the combination has paid off. Go Daisy!

After the vet, we went to Qdoba for lunch and Daisy played guard dog, jumping up any time anyone went in/out. She’s so cute.

guard dog

Saturday was also my little cousin Adam’s 4th birthday party. Since I jump on any excuse to bake, I went all out.  I got a mini donut pan for Christmas and finally busted it out. I was really unimpressed with the recipe I used though, so next time I will hunt for a better one but I made these little monstrosities.

donut cupcakes!

They were so tall they just barely fit into my carrier. I need to stop making such elaborate cupcakes when I need to transport them places. I think I would definitely make them again with a different donut recipe and only when they are staying home. They were so messy and the heat did not help at all. But they are just too cute!

It was great to spend time with my family although I wish my mom had been at the party (she had to work). I did get lots of time with my adorable nephew Bradley. He is one of the very few babies that I can take him from someone when he is crying and he stops. He must know how much I need him to love me, hahaha.

ross and brad

Though he did lose his little mind when I changed his diaper. You would think he would appreciate having a nice dry diaper, but noooo.

Keith and I went bowling on Sunday and I present this picture without comment:


Okay, I have one comment: Yikes.

Which brings us to today. Last week I started Couch to 5k again. I say again, but the furthest I’ve ever gotten was day 3. Last week I woke up at 6am on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and did the runs. It was not easy, but I felt so freaking wonderful afterwards. And doing it in the morning was extra great because I got to feel good about myself all day long. Today was Week 2, Day 1. I was not about to wake up at 6am on a non-work day to do the run, so I did it around 10am and oh was it horrible. It was so humid and disgusting I almost died. I finished, but barely. The 6am runs were wonderful because not a single soul is outside then. Today everyone and their dog was out. I had a chorus of about 6 dogs barking at me on every loop. Eventually, I started to pretend they were cheering for me, but that didn’t even help.

Here’s hoping Wednesday/Friday are better! Oddly enough, while writing this, my friend Sarah texted me to tell me she just finished the program so I asked if she’d be interested in signing up for a 5k with me when I’m done and she said yes! I was afraid I was going to have to do one by myself, since I do know a few people who run but they are all wayyyy ahead of me.

I also got a little crafty today. I made my flag wreath for the front door around Memorial Day and decided it could stay up until Labor Day. Well, earlier this week, I realized I had no replacement wreath. So I got to work and made super simple wreath.

pitt wreath!

A pool noodle taped end to end + yarn + glitter letters = a Pitt wreath! I wasn’t sure about it before I added the letters, but I think it’s pretty cute! It took all of 45 minutes too. (Wrapping the yarn was sort of a pain.) Also, yikes, my door needs re-stained. I wonder if Keith will let me paint it. (And I still hate that stained glass fish.)

Hope your weekends were as fun-filled as mine!

pink is the new pink.

So last weekend, along with ripping wallpaper down, I did a little painting. By little I mean crafty painting, not wall painting.

I have been seeing these “eat” signs in kitchens around the internet and really wanted one of my own.

eat sign

At some point while looking for one, I decided to go in a different direction:


I don’t exactly love the font (I would have rather had all lowercase letters – all though capitals are probably better because Italians yell a lot) but I kind of love it. It’s a shout out to my pap/my Italian heritage/the one word in Italian I know. It’s not as crooked as it looks, I just took the picture from that angle to get both of my kitchen colors in. And you can see my cupcake collection on the shelf. I wasn’t sure where to put it but I figured telling people to eat on their way into the dining room made the most sense!

I also did a little painting in the bedroom, painting these cheap birch frames from Ikea pink. I was struggling with what to put in them since they are so teeny tiny and thought I’d do a little take on “his and hers” but backwards, since that’s how we sleep.

hers & his

I’ll actually probably swap them out for a bigger font, but I just wanted to test and see how it looked. I did the hers in a swirly font and the his in a less swirly font (even though Keith has prettier handwriting). I also bought us some lamps!


I had a tiny little Ikea lamp on my table and Keith had nothing on his. My lamp wasn’t bright enough and I really wanted matching lamps since we don’t have matching side tables. In case you haven’t noticed, lamps are EXPENSIVE. I have been hunting for months to try to find something in a shape I liked that wasn’t 40$ a lamp. I was at Walmart buying the pink paint for my letters/frames and stumbled upon these babies for 14$! They were a great shape and although they were shadeless I grabbed the last two and figured I could deal with finding shades later. And then on the other side of aisle, I spotted these shades, which were pretty much perfect. All blues and silvers, which is right up my alley! The shades were only 6$ so I got two lamps and two shades for cheaper than I could find one single lamp. I am pretty excited. For some reason, it makes me feel more grown-up/sophisticated having matching lamps.


I think they make the bedroom so cozy. Keith said we didn’t need new lamps, but he already used his, so I think I win this round.

I am almost ready to call the bedroom complete but I still want a long dresser for across from the bed. I also want to paint it pink.

I’m so lucky Keith lets me do whatever I want in regards to decorating. I think he’d stop me if he totally hated something, but I’m not really sure, haha.

six at heart

I am so busy these days. Weekends go by in a total blur, we’re running from here to there and even when I’m at home there are a million things to do. I miss the pre-house weekends when my favorite thing to do was sit around all weekend doing nothing.

Last weekend was no exception. I babysat Friday night, which was pretty nice. By the time I got there, it was bath time, then we watched a movie, I put them to bed and read until the parents came home. The dad got home first and while chatting he says, “How come they like you so much?” ” Um because I am still their age on the inside?” He said as soon as they found out I was coming over, they were jumping up and down haha.

Sometimes I feel like I am a grown adult, why am I still babysitting? But then I hear something like that or have a nice quiet moment where the kids scootch a little closer and it’s all worth it. One of the last times I babysat the little boy kept calling me Gina. Finally I said “WHO is Gina?!” His sister then explained that is their other babysitter. I mentioned something to a girl at work about the conversation and she asked if it bothered me that they had another babysitter. “Nah, maybe it would have at one time, but I am so busy these days I don’t mind. But it would bother me if they liked her better than me.”  Haha, so mature.

Saturday morning we woke up and went to more garage sales. I bought an Atlas jar, a blue Ball jar (both with glass lids) and a blue vase. I find I enjoy garage sales of old men the best. Old women usually have stuff that is clearly old-women-y. Young couples usually have tons of kid stuff, which I don’t need. Old men have cool house stuff.

Then we went to brunch at Verde. We have been to Verde probably more than any other restaurant this year (4-5 times since November) and it has never disappointed. We have been trying to go to brunch since they started offering it a few weeks ago and finally made it.

Brunch always stumps me. I can never decide if I want to go sweet or savory and as soon as I order one, I want the other.   

burch at verde

I ordered caballeros pobres which was huge pieces of french toast stuffed with a mild jalapeño cream cheese, covered in mango marmalade with cinnamon infused syrup. Which was excellente. Also bizcocho which is a plaintain/corn bisquit. (hooray for bread!) Keith got the chilaquiles, which I also wanted. They were the star of the brunch and I couldn’t stop stealing them. We will definitely be back.

After a very delightful nap when we got home, I finished a little craft I was doing:


I missed Memorial Day, but I figure that sucker can stay up until Labor Day. I saw the wreath on pinterest and knew I could do it. All it is is a wreath (I bought a straw one because it was cheaper), felt and straight pins. I bought 350 straight pins and 6 pieces of each color felt and got this far:

(towel underneath because the straw wreath shed EVERYWHERE.)

I then ran out and bought 450 more pins and 2 more pieces of red and white (I still had blue). It was a pretty cheap project and pretty easy (though time consuming). I just watched some tv while I worked. (I recommend a thimble or something to push the pins in with because doing 400+ hurts.)

I had wanted to buy a wreath for a while because there is a hook in the front door and the wood is semi-faded in a wreath shape.  (Which must mean they had always had one.)



I think it looks pretty darn cute! (Don’t mind the grass, we’re going for the hillbilly chic look.) Sunday included the fastest Ikea trip ever, but that’s another post.

picture perfect

Last weekend was full of yard work and Keith’s stepdad came down to help him plant our apple tree! Keith had a really rough time digging a hole in the front yard for my azalea bush (which I am pretty sure I already killed..) because it was all rocks/clay. Luckily they had a much easier time in the back yard and in a few years we should hopefully have our own supply of honey crisps!


We need to do something to straighten the tree out, but its curve actually worked well for us, as we were able to get it home by shoving it out the car window.

We also got a present from Keith’s gram:


I love it! It has our address on the bottom as well. His gram is very artistic, she has a collection of drawings in her apartment of all the homes she has lived in. While we are never moving again, it would be such a wonderful way to remember the house if we ever did move. (Which we’re not!) Now I just need to find a place to hang it!

I spent this weekend painting (of course) and also went to Michael’s and got supplies to get crafty. It was too dark after I finished to take pictures of the painted bedroom, so I’ll post those soon. And hopefully I can show off my craftiness soon too. One of them involves glitter! Hooray!