How it All Began

Many people have a romantic story about how the love of their life got down on one knee and finally proposed. I figured out, very early in my relationship that Snicks was not this person. He’s very quiet, laid back and gets embarrassed very easily in situations where the attention is on him. It just wouldn’t be his style to go all out with a proposal. When Nick did propose, I had no idea it was going to happen. While I always knew that I was going to marry Nick, I figured it was still a year or two off. Not that I’m complaining. So when he finally did pop the question, I was in complete shock.

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The day it happened, I went over Nick’s house earlier that day because he had a dinner at his firehouse that night. He asked me if I wanted to watch a movie in his room and we went to go pick out a movie. Now, I should have known that something was up when Snicks actually picked The Incredibles out for us to watch. The Incredibles is my all time favorite Pixar movie (We’re finally getting a sequel. Whoop Whoop.) When we first started dating, every time I came over to visit, we would watch the Incredibles. This went on for months until Snicks finally put the ax on my beloved movie. So when he asked if I wanted to watch it, I was over the moon that my sweet, sensitive boyfriend would want to sit through a movie that he knew that I loved.

We headed upstairs, popped in the movie and were laying in bed. We hung for a while and then Snicks started talking. In my own little world, you are only allowed to start talking during movies if I am talking during movies. I gave him a few dirty looks but he continued to talk. Our exchange went like this:

“Hey Amie?”

“Yes?”

“Are you sure you want to spend the rest of your life with me?”

“Yes, yes. Now shhh. The movie is on.”

Snicks takes out a ring box, opens it up and goes, “Will you?”

I look at the box, look at him and then back at the box before promptly responding, “If this is a joke, we’re breaking up.”

I then proceeded to lay in his bed, hyperventilating from the shock as he waited for my answer. Of course, it was a yes and I was so excited to finally be engaged. I called my mother and I picked out a wedding date ten minutes later. While it wasn’t the most romantic proposal on earth, it fit us as a couple perfectly. Snicks was actually planning on asking me to a month later when we went on vacation with all of our friends but he didn’t want to wait. We recently just celebrated a year being engaged and it’s crazy to think we’re finally coming up on our wedding!

How did he propose? How did you react?

Do Me A Favor

Unlike most of my wedding decisions, I went back and forth on the ideas of favors for my guests. My biggest pet peeve as a wedding guest is when the bride gives out thoughtless dollar store favors and you throw it out the minute you get home. Or worse, you keep it, feeling guilty for throwing out whatever she gave you. I really loved the idea of a popcorn bar. My mom’s best friend attended a wedding a few months back and they had a popcorn bar. It was the perfect amount of rustic that I was going for. I also loved the idea of feeding your guests after a long night of partying it out on the dance floor. After a few months of thinking about the popcorn bar, I came to several conclusions. One, the popcorn bar would work perfectly as a small wedding but with over 300 people on my wedding list, the popcorn bar could become more of a hassle then anything. Also, I began to have nightmares of my drunken friends tossing popcorn at each other in the shuttle on the way back to the hotel. Yes, they act like they are ten years old. My mom is still finding ham from my graduation party lunch meat fight.  Finally, at the end of the night, our banquet manager is also a personal friend and the last thing I want her to be worrying about is our stupid popcorn bar.

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So my genius idea of a popcorn bar was soon thrown out the window. While searching for favor ideas, I came across DIY hot chocolate on Wedding Paper Divas blog. I thought it was the cutest idea and if I was ever to have a winter wedding, this would be my favor of choice. Then I thought about it. My wedding is in the fall, couldn’t hot chocolate be considered a favor option. Then it hit me, pumpkin spice anything is a very popular flavor during the fall, what about pumpkin spice hot chocolate?

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Wedding Paper Divas

Obviously, I have not tried out my idea yet and will write a post about the creation of my pumpkin spice hot chocolate but I did test out the packaging! I bought the mason jars from an online store. The lace burlap I got from Michael’s and the tag I got from the etsy shop TheLovebirdPress. I love all of their tags and printables and highly recommend them.

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I wasn’t sure how I would hand these out but I decided they would just enhance the look of our tables. So I’ve decided to place them at each setting for each couple. Another trend that I love is the mason jars for each guest to drink out of. I think this is adorable and such a great idea. A few months ago, I bought 280 mason jars with handles. I’m waiting until we get closer to the wedding but I also purchased chalkboard tags for the jars as well from LakeEffectTreasury. If you’re going to be ordering a lot like I did, I would recommend contacting her for your own listening. She even threw in a couple extra which I really appreciated.

The final look of the mason jar glasses looked like this:

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I also made the flags myself! (Another post for another day) I struggled with purchasing paper straws because I had a friend who used them for her wedding and they disintegrated before the first drink. Obviously they’re more for looks then actual use but I wanted them to last at least a drink or two. I bought my straws from (where else?) etsy! I bought them from BakersBlingShop and when I tested them out, they got a little mushy after a few drinks but all in all, it was successful!

I plan to have these mason jars all sitting on a table so guests can grab them when they walk in! I know we have two favors instead of one, but it means a lot to me to have gifts that our friends will enjoy to thank them for celebrating our special day with us!

What are your favor ideas? Are you DIY-ing or are you buying them? Did you decide to go the edible route?

Up in the Gym Working on my Fitness

I’m not going to sugar coat it. I hate the gym. I hate working out. I really like nachos. And cheeseburgers. And oh, french fries. I love french fries. Pretty much, I can relate to Jennifer Lawrence on every food related comment she has ever made. As a result, I’ve got a little junk in the truck and while I’ve never loved my body, I’ve dealt with it. Because I love ice cream and chocolate.

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Snicks is also a food lover. He is the sole reason for most of my weight gains in our five year relationship. Unlike me. he loves the gym. Like loves the gym. Maybe more then me. His life revolves around the gym. He’s trying to become a police officer, so he’s constantly pushing his body to become faster and stronger. (Seriously he runs a 6:15 mile. How does a human do that?) So he goes to the gym and works off all of the food we eat together and I stay home and watch repeats of Bar Rescue. Well, not anymore!

I’ve been struggling with my weight for most of my life. I was a college basketball player and I played softball my freshman year. I’ve been an athlete for most of my life. I love playing sports and for most of my life, that is how I got my activity in. I gained a lot of weight in my sophomore year but lost a good amount of weight in my junior year. Over the years, I’ve gained a few pounds back and now that I’m getting married, I really want to start to take my fitness seriously.

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I’ve made a few lifestyle changes in the past few months. I take boot camp twice a week at my local gym along with kick boxing. I really do enjoy the small class sizes and my instructors make me accountable. Times when I wouldn’t take things as seriously, I find that I push myself to do more and do them correctly. On the days that I don’t have a class, I try to get a run in outside or do a workout on my Beach Babes DVD. Recently I signed up for the Bikini Series for Tone it up. While I don’t follow everything for the Bikini Series since I do my classes almost everyday, I do steal some of their workouts. I follow the girls on instagram and they’re pretty inspirational. I’m also participating in the 100 miles till summer. I’m not doing as well as I hoped but it’s a goal and keeps me motivated to push out that last mile.

I’m also much more smart about what I’m eating. During the week especially, I pack my meals and try to keep everything healthy and green. On the weekends, I tend to cheat a bit as long as I worked hard that week. I still have my nachos and pizza, but make healthier versions instead. Also, I gave up alcohol for the month of May, GASP. I know. I’m a wino but lately, my drinking habits have been setting me back in seeing the results I want. I’ve lost some weight and I’m feeling a bit more toned then I have before.

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All in all, I don’t want to lose a million pounds before my wedding day. I think that’s unrealistic. I find brides who set an unrealistic weight loss goal for themselves, just make themselves miserable in the process. I want to enjoy all of my wedding events and if I miss a work out or two, so be it. At the end of the day, I will be happy however I look and I will feel beautiful no matter what.

 

Are you trying to lose weight before your wedding? Any tips for those who are in the process?

 

Bling Bling Bling, I got the Ring

Snicks and I checked another To do off our list. We have a “To Do” list every month that we try to get completed in order to get everything done in a timely manner (We have yet to finish anything on time). Getting our wedding rings was one of the few things we had to do in May so it was nice to check it off our list nice and early. Snicks got my ring at Zales and he had a coupon for up to 35% off until next Sunday. He works next weekend so we thought it would be for the best to get them done now. I am foreign to the idea of a budget but going into it, I was hoping to stay under a thousand dollars when it came to our rings.

First up was Snicks. He is probably the easiest and hardest person to shop for at the same time. He’s very simple and easy to please but he never loves anything. We headed towards the men’s rings. Nick has giant hands so he (we) decided that a thicker band would be better. He was attracted to the Tungsten and the woman told us that this was a great ring for guys because it’s much more durable and harder then regular silver. 

He tried on several rings but kept going back to the same one. I asked him if he was ready to wear this ring for the rest of his life. He promptly told me “I like it.” Which is Snicks speak is, “I love this ring.” 

I, of course, forgot to take photos, so I stole the ones from the Zales’ website.

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Nick’s Ring / Zales.com

Next it was my turn. I told Nick later that this was probably the easiest sale that this woman ever had to make. She showed me a few rings and the first one she showed me, I knew it was the one. My engagement ring is a bit big and has a few different features and I wanted a smaller wedding band.

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My Ring / Zales.com

It’s not the exactly same ring but it’s close enough so you can get an idea. I really enjoyed shopping at Zales, the people are friendly and very helpful. The prices are reasonable, especially if you can find a coupon or go during a time when they have a sale. Nick’s ring came out to 373.43 and mine was around 596.50. So we were just below our 1,000 dollar budget. After ring shopping, I rewarded Snicks with some pretzels from Auntie Anne’s. (I ate half because I was proud of myself too).

 

How This Story Began

Snicks and I don’t have the most romantic how we met story out there. We weren’t high school sweethearts, it wasn’t love at first sight. Actually, we had quite a few bumps in the beginning. We met in the basement of the football house I lived next to my sophomore year of college. His freshman year. There were two weeks left to the semester. (It was a Tuesday and the last full week of classes. What can I say we were party animals.) My friends were dancing with guys and I was just standing there like the awkward turtle I am. My MOH glanced at me and was like “Go find someone to dance with.” And in my drunken haze, I found Snicks and we danced all night. (This is what I was able to piece together from my own fuzzy mind and stories from my friends.) When the party ended, the lights came on, Snicks and I were still dancing awkwardly. If that’s not love in the making, I don’t know what is.

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Our first photo together.

I gave him my phone number and the next night he texted me asking what I was doing. I told him I was going out again (Like I said, party animals) and he told me he was going to Philadelphia to visit a friend. Years later he finally admitted that was a lie and I like to remind him of this constantly. That summer we stayed in touch, texted everyday constantly and hung out a few times a month. We spent all summer together and when school started again, I gave him an ultimatum that he had to ask me to be his girlfriend or I won’t be his friend anymore. It was a little dramatic but I was twenty and I needed some results. The next time he saw me, he asked me to be his girlfriend and I, of course, accepted. I was so surprised.

We face two big challenges in the beginning of our relationship that finally cemented us into a couple. I still complain about them to this day. One, it took Snicks months to actually say hello to me in the cafeteria. (He’s super shy by the way and I’m super not). And he would walk out of the cafeteria without saying hello or goodbye to me. We went to small college so we frequently saw each other in the cafeteria at dinnertime. I, of course called him out on this several times before “nothing” morphed into a wave. Then by the end of the year he was coming over to my friends and saying hello. In his defense, he didn’t know any of my friends at the time and as he got to know my friends, he became more comfortable coming over to the table. But still, always say goodbye to your girlfriend at the dinner table. Glad we got past that.

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Two. He wouldn’t make me his Facebook girlfriend. Sure, now it sounds silly but this was when Facebook was still the “it” thing to do and everyone asked if you two were Facebook official. I sent him the invite to be my boyfriend a few days after we were official and he ignored it. Luckily he didn’t deny it but still. Ignored it. Weeks later, Snicks and I were still Facebook unofficial. My friends and I decided to go to the Twilight midnight premiere (Twilight was still a thing back then) and Snicks texted me to come back to his room to hang out afterwards. How our campus works is we have a main campus and a South Campus about a mile apart from each other. Snicks lived on South Campus and I lived on main. So I receive this romantic text asking Snicks to see me and of course I have my friends drop me off at South Campus while they head back to Main Campus. I swipe into his building and start calling him/knocking on the door. No answer. He fell asleep. 

Now I am car-less on South Campus, there are no shuttles and I have no place to go. The smart thing would be to call one of my friends to come get me but I needed to make a point. I left him a text and a voice mail calmly explaining to him that I was walking back to Main Street, on the dangerous streets of Bethlehem, on my own. In the rain. Needless to say, the next morning Snicks was at the door of my house with an everything bagel and he confirmed our Facebook status. The rest my friends, is history.

To be honest, now that I think about it, they are sort of ridiculous stories but that still make me laugh.

Do you have any quirky stories about when you first started dating? How long till you or he made it Facebook official?

 

Bridesmaid Dress Shopping

Asking all my favorite girls to be in my bridal party was one of the easier things I had to do. Let’s be honest, a girl has her bridal party picked out from day one. At least I did. I’m one of the first girls in my group of friends to get married and all of my friends are super excited to hear every detail. Which is nice because I am always so willing to show everyone every single one of my ideas and expect a chorus of “oohs” and “ahhs” after them. Okay, I’m a little excited for my wedding and to have my besties just as excited is the best feeling in the world. We actually picked out my bridesmaid dresses before I even decided on a dress. I already had an idea of what I wanted for my girls, plum bridesmaid dresses, short. Any style will do. Same designer. Easy right?

On one of my dress excursions I came upon the designer that I wanted. Perfect plum color, short dresses. I even demanded that my mother try on a few to send to my girls. Okay let’s be honest, my mother wanted in on the action too.

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While I do love the idea of identical dresses, I have eight girls in my bridal party. Two are 6’0 tall, two are 5’0. We’ve got well endowed girls and not so well endowed girls. I wanted everyone to feel comfortable in their dresses and I knew it was unrealistic to select a dress and have everyone agree on it. I told the girls that I wanted to choose between two and three styles that complimented them from the same designer and that we should try to get a symmetrical look going. The last thing I wanted was six girls with one dress and two girls with the other.

When we got to the place, chaos ensued. A few of my girls struggled to find dresses in their sizes (it was the boobs), my obnoxious bridesmaid was yelling and behaving in typical fashion. Dresses were being thrown everywhere and nick’s sisters who are on the shyer side, just stood there in shock. A few girls tried on dresses they liked and it appeared that we were getting somewhere. Until one of my bridesmaids walked out of the room in a dress we all hadn’t expected. Girl after girl tried on the dress and I suddenly felt like I was the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants – Wedding Issue. It had a one strap to support my larger chested girls, it had a sweetheart neckline to appease my strapless girls. It had a waistband to hide the places you wanted to hide and long enough for my tall girls. Everyone decided it was there number one dress except one girl and I politely told her that sorry not sorry. She was not that special. (She loved the dress and looks amazing in anything so don’t think it was a hard sell). And our dresses were chosen.

Bridesmaid Ally did not want to remove the dress so she eagerly volunteered to be the model for the dresses.

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We talked to the seamstress and she explained to us that it would be easy to remove the flowers so imagine this dress sans flowers and in the plum color showed above. All in all, I absolutely love the dress and had an easier time picking out bridesmaid dresses for my girls. The dresses were originally $215 and the owner took off 20 dollars for the bulk purchase. The dresses came to about $195 dollars plus alterations are included. I highly recommend finding a place that includes their alterations with the purchase of a dress, it makes life so much easier!!

Did you have an easy time selecting bridesmaid dresses? How did you decide on long or short? Matching or mixed?

The Child Delimma

Something that I have been struggling with since getting engaged is the age old question that most brides are faced with. Do you invite the kiddies or ask that they stay at home? Snicks and I decided right off the bat that we would not be inviting any children over the age of sixteen to our wedding (besides our Junior Bridesmaid who is seven). We don’t have any close nieces or nephews but a lot of our cousins have children. On my side, I’m pretty close with some of my cousins’s kids but Nick and I barely know the baby on his side BUT you can’t invite one without inviting them all so we quickly decided to ex nay the kids.

We had an issue during my uncle’s wedding a few years ago where my cousin was very upset that his child was not invited. My aunt and cousin were not attending the wedding until the very last minute when they decided to come. My cousin actually approached my uncle at his wedding and told him that my uncle owed him 500 dollars for needing to hire a babysitter. Now that my wedding is approaching, I have a feeling something like this might happen again.

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I’ve already heard a few comments about their children coming from both sides of our family. At Nick’s cousin’s baby shower, she held up a very adorable, pink dress and wondered out loud when the baby was going to wear it. Then a thought came to mind, “Oh this would be perfect for Snick’s and Amie’s wedding.” Cue the cringe. At my new baby cousin’s baptism, my newest Aunt came up to me with the bundle of joy and started dancing around. It was very sweet until she decided to tell the baby that she couldn’t wait to dance with him and Mine and Snick’s wedding. Now I’m going to have to let the poor kid down. Bummer.

My parents, Snicks and I have been discussing about what to do about this child-conundrum. I don’t want to start a family feud over children but the truth is, my venue is quite large and surrounded by ponds and other bodies of water. I don’t want to be responsible for anything that might happen. Also, inviting all of the children would give us 10-15 more mouths to feed. While children’s prices are cheaper, it’s still more money to add to our ever expanding budget.

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So I scoured the Weddingbee message boards to get some ideas on how to approach this. I did not want to put “Adults Only” on my wedding invite. My mother also hates the whole “___ number of seats have been reserved in your honor”. So that put the kibosh on that.  But after reading a few posts, I got the idea to add another insert into the invitation. Putting together a few examples I came up with this:

“Although we would love to celebrate with all of
our family and friends, it just isn’t possible due to
the nature of our venue. For this reason, we have
been limited to an adult only reception. Please feel
free to bring your little ones to the ceremony. We
thank you in advance for your understanding.”

The question is, do I put this in every invite or just the invitations of those you have children? I’m thinking to be safe, I might put it in a few family members who are close to the mothers and fathers as well. To make sure the rules are followed. I’m sure myself, my FMIL and my mother will be receiving phone calls complaining about the no child rule but I’m determined to stick to it. If anyone should disregard me wishes and bring their kids, I’m not going to let it ruin my wedding day.

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I had decided to include photos of me with really cute babies to prove to the world that I do love kids. Just not at my wedding.

Did you stick to the no child rule? Did it work? How did you let scheming parents know that their kids were a no go?