D is for Divorce

A lot of things have changed since the first post. I started out as a Housedaughter, scared and excited to be starting out on a new career path, starting dental school as a newlywed – married my college sweetheart of 7 years at the time. Four years later, just as dental school was ending, so was my marriage.

If there was a graph illustrating my feelings, the ups and downs, about both dental school and my marriage, it was almost inversely related. As I became more comfortable and successful at school and work, my marriage started to very slowly wither and die. Maybe the relationship was never really in tip top shape. Maybe I spent too much time on school. If focusing on school was the cause, I don’t regret that, but it would be too easy to say it was just that. It was probably a hundred little things that caused the demise of an otherwise promising marriage.

Towards the end, I desperately tried to hang on to someone who wasn’t there anymore – physically, emotionally. He had checked out.  I knew in my heart he was gone. As a final Hail Mary, I asked him to go with me to a highly recommended psychologist for counseling, who confirmed that we were beyond counseling. The psychologist referenced the adage, “It takes two people to start a relationship, it only takes one to end it.”

Posting this because there’s a dental reference, a breakup reference, and it made me laugh about sadness. I hope it does that for you, too.

Born Again Bridal!

Still getting super excited about weddings because my BFF is getting married soon!!!! Found an inspirational blog for paper goods and cakes for the modern bride, the Brooklyn Bride! which showcases some interesting things that I have not seen before!

Modern Horizontal Lines

An Inadvertant Opalescent wedding!

Talk about happy accidents. I first saw the idea of an opalescent wedding on Martha Stewart Weddings (my go-to on wedding eye candy). Looked great in theory, but I just didn’t think I could focus on the color palette enough to pull it off. Lucky for me, my florist, Alla, loves lavender, and inserted lavender tulips into the primarily pink, peach, and white arrangements and table settings. Instant opalescence!

Color Scheme: Pinks and Peaches

Raspberries and peaches good enough to eat. Festive pom-pom garlands will adorn the balcony a la Cinco de Mayo. Substantial, structured lanterns will illuminate the outdoor terrace, and faceted, ombre-effect rock candies effervesce from a butter-cream frosted cake.

Color Scheme: Pinks and Peaches

Fascinating Veils

Wedding veils lived in Snoozeville for me. The thought of finding the “right” veil seemed so unappetizing, since they all were pretty boring, if you asked me. What was the point of wearing one? All the recent weddings that I have attended had brides who did wear veils, but never a blusher. That was the best part of playing bride as a kid, the unveiling part.

And then, I discovered Sara Gabriel’s veils and fascinators! Yes, precisely, these were fascinating, poufy ornaments for my wedding-day do. A little added height never hurts, either.

Here are 5 of my favorite looks. 1 of them was the future Mr.’s pick. Guess which one.

Wedding Registries: Yay! or Nay?

Remember the days when having a registry was considered a social faux pas? Now it seems that registries have lost their stigma and found their way into acceptable wedding etiquette.

As a gift giver, I receive the wedding invitation, and then a week before the wedding I check their online gift registry. I am royally annoyed that all the “good” stuff is taken i.e. stuff that is about what I estimate is the cost of my meal ticket at the reception, and then some. It’s slim pickings with the $400 luxury items (meant for grandparents and rich uncles?), and bottom of the barrel odds and ends, like chip clips. That’s another one of my peeves, when people ask for tiny odds and ends like chip clips. If you ask me for chip clips, you’re getting chip clips, so don’t look so sad when you open your gift and find chip clips nestled in the box. Anyway, I will admit that initially it is less stressful to get a gift for a friend that you know they want because they asked for it. But being limited to the registry is stressful too. Especially when I procrastinate, and find that the items that are left on the registry are so old that they are out of stock, and will not be restocked.

I had to try this registry thing for myself. After a good hour or so of judicious browsing, I had 30 items total composed of a range of items from kitchenware to bedding. That is seriously all that I foresee us needing. Then, a pop up came up, and said “Really? That’s it? You’re not doing this right.” Okay, so maybe it didn’t say that, but it implied it, asking that I add more items, recommending 2xs the number of gifts as guests.

Having less items on a registry is a good thing. It gives people the freedom to give creatively, and to put some thought into it. It’s the thought that counts, after all. A modest registry also ensures that you do get what you need to get started off right. After that, cash is king.

Mainstream vs DIY Style Wedding?

To go mainstream or DIY-esque*? In searching for vendors, there is no middle ground. There’s either DJ #1 who has done tons of high school proms and comes with his own strobe light, or DJ #2, the anti-mainstream DJ, who used to DJ at the independent radio station and is an avid pottery artist by day. Do I want fanfare a la DJ #1, or do I want low key, socially awkward DJ #2?

To be honest, I loathe high school dances, scratch that, high school anything. Even my tolerance of high school aged people is on a case by case basis. This bit of logic would negate DJ #1 as a viable option, and seal the deal for DJ #2.

Okay, so I go with DJ #2, but what separates him from my socially awkward ipod? Is there a tactful way to ask him that? I started to ask the question on our phone conversation, but decidedly gave him the benefit of the doubt, and asserted that he can do things that an ipod player cannot…what exactly that might be? The jury is still out.

It really comes down to style. I want things to read well, but putting together the DJ, photographer, caterer, florist, baker is like cutting magazine letters out for a ransom note; a little helter skelter. Surely a vintage photographer would clash with the mainstream DJ? I feel as though the path is diverging into mainstream and alternative. To be honest, I am about as vintagely inspired as a J.Crew would get, which I would quantify as “a little, but not very.” Perhaps I should play it safe, stick to convention, and accept responsibility for my role in getting involved in something as conventionally uncool as getting legally married…DJ #1.

Coral, Graphite, and Citron Color Scheme

Having trouble committing to a color scheme after the caterer inquired about my table linen color choices. There is the standard white/ivory and even a lace overlay, which might be nice considering the venue. However, if we’re paying extra to rent long linens for the banquet tables….might as well get color right?

Coral, Graphite, and Citron Color Scheme

According to this coral, dark grey, and citron color scheme…we could pull off the following

Chiavari chairs: Dark Mahogany OR Silver
Linens: Ivory OR Pastel Green, Pastel Blue Green
Napkins: Ivory
Seat Covers: Ivory
Flowers: Coral
Misc: clear vases, silver and mercury candlesticks, white candles

Bridesmaid dresses: Coral
Groomsmen: Graphite/Medium Dark Grey Suits

So many little details, I am definitely sweating the small stuff. ARGH.

Long Rectangular Tables for Wedding Seating Design

Love banquet dining with long rectangular tables because you can chat with people across the table from you, which rounds don’t offer. The good news is that many venues have these in stock at no additional charge. Long tables are friendlier, and have the flexibility to be dressed up for a rustic outdoor wedding, or dressed up for a formal regal look.

The lush decorations, which I adore, are what I’m about to tackle next in terms of budget and feasibility. Will definitely need more flowers than most invest in for the wedding, and that means florist expenses go up.

Next step: hoard clear glass candle holders, clear flower vases (an assortment of glass and crystal for both holders and vases). Where can I get my hands on clear candelabras for rent?

I love the height of the candelabras, and the shimmering layers of the clear glass and candlelight, and of course, lots of low lying flowers so people can talk over them, while maintaining a clear vision across the table of fellow guests.

See below for the inspiration:

Honeymoon Destination Inspiration! Curacao

Back from a lovely cruise to the Western Carribean (Photos to follow shortly!), and the balmy weather, crystal clear waters, and exotic animals got me dreaming on top of a dream on honeymoon destinations. With 7 months to the big day, we should start booking for the Honeymoon soon!

Whenever I am asked where we are going, I say decisively, “Hawaii”! Hawaii is part of the US, no language barriers, a little on the pricey side, but total paradise and little thinking required on our part. G and I have roughed it in Central America, where I was the banker, the translator, the organizer, and totally exhausted. The groom usually plans the honeymoon, and that tradition is fine by me! Hawaii is sure to please, and if not go all out on the honeymoon, then when?

But after this cruise, with the Caribbean so close to the east coast of the US, it seems silly to fly half way across the world to Hawaii, when we have the beautiful ABC islands. Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao .

Willemstad, Curacao

Curacao (pronounced koo-rah-sow) was rated the #1 place in the world to visit in 2012 by Frommer’s. The ultimate carribean paradise, Curacao is one of those special places where it has beautiful, sunny weather all year long with an average temperature of 85 degrees. Sugar white sands, teeming coral reefs, ship wreck dives, and historic, charming Willemstad (above) make this a great honeymoon pick. This dutch colony is near the northern coast of Venezuela. (The Dutch womens’ volleyball team vacations here). The “rainy season” is usually from Oct to Feb, but we will surely miss this, and hurricane season. We will also be in time for the hatching turtles (May-Aug)! Baby turtles, wonderful!

The best beaches are on the southern coast, west of Willemstad, including Blauwbaai, Daaibooi and Knip Bay. Curaçao’s most snorkel-friendly wreck dive, Tugboat, lies in shallow water just 100 yards offshore. Fifteen miles southeast of the big island, unpopulated Klein Curaçao offers day-trippers a complete castaway experience: shipwrecks, an old lighthouse, and more than a mile of flat, empty sands that are the longest in Curaçao. I can’t imagine anyone better than my newly minted husband to be on a deserted island with.

Hyatt Regency in Curacao Gold Resort, Spa, and Marina

Let’s get down to business. How much will a trip to Curacao cost? A quick look at the droolworthy Hyatt Regency Resort, Spa, and Marina has a special deal going on now with their new all-inclusive package. Use the promo code “CURAIP,” which is good through 2012, and get every 4th night free, refunded upon checkout. That’s 12 nights of paradise, with 3 free nights with 3+ meals per day, unlimited house wine, and unlimited premium beverages, juices, soda. That’s 242.70 USD per night (best deal), or $2184.66 USD for 12 days in May (and I’ve added in all taxes and service fees). And 12 nights is a long time. I could even go for 8 days and be satisfied. A reviewer on tripadvisor.com says that this Hyatt is comparable to the Maui Four Seasons in terms of superior accommodations and service. Consensus seems to be that it is for relaxation, not sure if it can keep G entertained enough, but perfect for me, the little couch potato.

Next up: Hawaiian resort packages.

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