Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Wed Recap: The only tears shed on our wedding day... least that I know of, came when I was basically all alone in the bridal cottage. Well, it was just me...and my videographer. Silly, I know. There were a few brief moments that I got choked up:

*  When I turned the corner during my walk down the aisle and saw Mr Fix It
*  At the very end of the letter I read to him during our ceremony
*  And at one point during my speech/toast at the reception

But other than that, there was no time during our wedding day that I actually shed any tears (except for what I'm about to show you).  And if you know me, you know that is *SO* unlike me!  I am a bawler...anything that touches a heart string, scares me, saddens me, even makes me laugh hard will bring on the waterfall of tears.  So I was anticipating lots of them on my wedding day.  But you'll see in this video, this was the only time that I actually started crying.

Our videographer includes a little thing he calls the 'He Said, She Said' interview in his wedding interviews.  He basically takes a few moments on the wedding day to pull the bride and groom each aside individually away from everyone else, and asks them some basic questions about how they met, how he proposed, what they love about each other and what they want to say to each other on their wedding day.  Here's our little interview:

At first, when I saw samples of this on our videographer's web site, I thought it was cheesy.  But now, I love this because it totally shows our different versions of the key moments of our lives together :)  I love how Mr Fix It thinks he proposed on Christmas Eve (when we spent the whole night with my extended family) when it was actually Christmas morning with just my mom and daughter.  I love that the thing he shares about me that he likes is my OCD behavior which he constantly kids me about and complains about. 

As for the rest of the tears on our wedding day, I asked my mom if she cried and she said she didn't but only because she just felt so relaxed and 'present' in the moment.  She said she was truly able to enjoy everything because she knew I had it all covered.  I wish I could have said the same...I think if I had been 'present' myself, I probably would have actually been crying a lot more!

We did catch mom wiping a tear at this moment :)
Photo by Robert Mullins Photography

I asked my sister if she cried and she said she 'almost' cried when I was walking down the aisle, but she felt like it was mostly because of the words to the song I had playing.  That song was played on my ipod while I was driving for the entire year before our wedding and it made me cry every single time I'd listen to it before the wedding!

I did notice (and shared with you) that my sister-in-law and mother-in-law were crying when I walked down the aisle.  So sweet!  I expected that Mr Fix It might cry at some point during the day, but he held it together, too. 

It was funny, because when we let all the girls back into the bridal cottage after the interview, they all walked in and saw me crying.  My mom said to the videographer, Gary, "What did you do to her?!?"  I laughed and my makeup artist quickly touched up my eyes.  And that was it. 

So did any of you ladies cry on your big day?  Or if you are a bride-to-be, do you expect you will cry at some point? 

Tomorrow is one of my favorite video recaps:  our first look!

TODAY'S WEDDING TIP:  BLOT, don't wipe your tears if you cry.  Just dab at the corners of your eyes :)  And false eyelashes do wonders as well because if you do start crying, you can buy the black ones and don't even need to wear mascara!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Wedding Recap: Uh's magic!

There was one thing that Mr Fix It did not fight me on when I told him that I wanted something extra special to entertain the guests during our cocktail hour:  a magician!  If you read my post back here, you can check out the story of how we came to find the amazing Jeff Ezell. 

Jeff did not disappoint on any level!  He showed up before our ceremony started and we quickly greeted him while we passed him taking photos.  He sat in the very back of the ceremony by the bridge and even provided over 30 photos on his iphone for me on Facebook!  And then as soon as the ceremony was over and he and the guests made their way upstairs poolside for cocktails, he went to work!

He wandered around the guests, amazing and bewildering them with card tricks, rubberband tricks and even a trick with Mr Fix It's wedding band!  I'll just let the video speak for itself and then share a few pics with you as *HAVE* to see this!  And tell me if you see his slight of hand moves.

Today's video footage (courtesy of Video Keepsakes of Beverly Hills) is a bit longer than my previous recaps...but only because you have to see Jeff's amazing talents...and try to figure out how the heck he does this!!!

The amazing magician, himself

The kids were definitely loving him!

He gave us a deck of cards signed with his name and our wedding was a keepsake that
had a few cards in it that guests had written their names on as you saw in the video.

But I think Mr Fix It was most impressed with him.  As a matter of fact, he kept pulling him aside to do tricks for his own family and friends!  So much so, that by the end of the night, my mom, sister and some friends said they never even saw him!  But oh no, Mr Fix It made sure he made his way to *ALL* of *HIS* friends and family!  Twerp! 

I love Mr Fix It's reaction in these next few shots!

All above pictures by Robert Mullins Photography

Jeff did such an amazing job, that we asked him to stay during dinner and walk the tables while guests were waiting to be released for the buffet as well.  He did this for a very minimal extra fee.  We were so thankful!
He was more than accommodating and a wonderful vendor to work with - probably our favorite!

All above pictures provided by Roseanne Rivoli

TODAY'S WEDDING TIP:  Find a way to do something different during your cocktail hour if you can.  It can be playing a montage video of photos of the bride and groom or having a photobooth or a game table set up.  You can hire live musicians to walk around serenading guests or even those live moving tables to serve your appetizers on.  I knew I wanted our guests to be entertained throughout the event.  I wanted them to be kept busy and eating and having fun.  Those who saw the strolling magician raved about him and it was definitely a highlight and hit of our event that I was so excited about.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Wed Video Recap: Make 'em laugh!

Preface:  The end of the video in this post contains a few brief moments of the very beginning of our sure to watch it through to the end.  It is one of my favorite moments of our ceremony because it just shows our personality and how we interact with our pastor so perfectly.

As you saw in the posts last week, moments before I was to walk down the aisle, I had a little somethin' somethin' for entertaining our guests at the ceremony.  They had just arrived, maybe they walked around the zoo or picked up a drink at the bar.  They said some hellos to friends and family.  And now they had been seated.  They watched the wedding party make their entrances and arrive at the altar.  So all that was left, what normally comes next, is the bride's big entrance, right?  Nope...not at the Beever wedding.  I wanted to start off our night purely entertaining the guests and letting them know what this whole event was really all about....laughing and having FUN!  And so I had the video.  You can click that link to refresh your memory and view it was my piece de resistance of the night.  It was my baby that I had worked on for over six months leading up to the wedding.  And it was the big ta-da right before I entered to meet my almost husband.

So how did it go?  Well, here's some pics and video of the guests watching our E! True Hollywood spoof detailing the events of our life and our journey to each other as man and wife.

Disclaimer: This video was created using raw footage courtesy of Video Keepsakes of Beverly Hills.
It was created by me strictly for recap purposes and therefore will not necessarily be great quality.
There will be things you probably shouldn't hear and shaky footage in certain places.
Thank you for your understanding.

We had two 50" flat screen Panasonic high def tv's in our ceremony area.  One was off to the left off the guests (that's the one these guests are turning to watch) and the other was up to the right of the altar (so the bridal party and people up front could watch easily, too). 

Look at what a great time they're all having.  Their laughter helped keep me sort of calmer as you saw in last week's recap video :)

These are my future in-laws watching it.  My sister-in-law Jackie (on the right) got a sneak peek of the video a few weeks before the wedding when it was almost finished.

Friends from both me and Mr Fix It's lives are sitting together watching.

Here you can see the tv that was off to the left behind the guests.

Some old friends in the back have a great view of both tv sets.

And as you saw at the end of the video today, I wanted our ceremony to be anything but formal and stuffy.  I loved how our pastor made great jokes and comments about us personally and how we (I) just reacted to them instead of feeling like I had to sit there until it was my turn to talk.  :)

TODAY'S WEDDING TIP:  If you are going to have a montage or video played at any point in your wedding event, be sure to do a test of the actual equipment before the event.  I mailed the DVD to the video equipment rental company a few weeks before our wedding to have him play it in his DVD and test it...I don't know if you know, but homemade DVD's are not compatible with every type of DVD player.

*  All photos by Robert Mullins Photography

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Wed Video Recap: Processional - do whatever the heck you want!!!

So today's recap is all about our processional.  Ya know?  That part where your wedding party gets to the altar and then you make that famous walk down the aisle to your honey?  Well, I had a clear cut vision of how I wanted our processional to play out.  I wanted it to be a perfect blend of tradition (a nod to the classical music normally played at this part of the ceremony), but also reflect a modern twist and an upbeat fun tone that would be a great kick off to the evening and event.

If you remember, my processional included the video montage/spoof that would play at our ceremony just after the wedding party arrived at the altar and just before I walked down the aisle.  If you don't remember, here's the blog post showing the video :) 

No one thought the video would work or be a good idea.  It would be too long.  It would be boring.  It would make it hard for the bridal party to stand through for 20 minutes.  It didn't make sense that it would end and the song playing at the end would be the one I would be walking down the aisle to.  They just didn't get it like I saw it in my head. 

The song may have been faster than what most brides walk to, and it may not have been sung or played by live musicians as many brides do, but it was the perfect thing for me.  So here is my recap of our processional:

The song the parents and bridesmaids walked down the aisle to was Phil Collins' "Groovy Kind of Love" but performed in a classical version by the Royal Philharmonic Symphony.  I got the idea from the episode of Friends where Monica and Chandler married.

The guys made their way up to the altar and looking back at the video I realize that they entered from the wrong spot and also came in after the song started playing.  They were supposed to come in BEFORE the song played because I had timed it perfectly for the parents and bridesmaids only.  These mistakes were all a result of the 'rehearsal that wasn't.'  :)

Mom & Pops Beever

My mom and brother-in-law

After watching the raw footage of the ceremony, some of the bridesmaids sprinted down the aisle as you'll see and some walked the end, the song actually finished perfectly with all the ringbearers and flower girl making it to the end just as it was ending.  :)

My nephew (one of our 4 ring bearers) walked with his mom (my sister, the MOH) because he just wasn't doin' it alone. 

The eldest made it down fine (you'll see him in a future recap).  And these two youngin's (our nephews) helped each other:

The girls were smart.  I had told the wedding party to sit on the steps during the video so they wouldn't be standing for so long and I made sure our audio/video rental guy set up one of the tv's so the wedding party could see it from the altar.  The girls sat, the boys didn't for whatever reason.

I was tucked away in my bridal cottage just outside of the bridge that you walk across to the ceremony area.  I pulled a chair up right next to the door with it propped open and peeked out so that I could watch/listen to the guests as they watched the video.  It was so great...and I am so glad that I didn't have to be totally alone somewhere out of range of this because I would have been an even *worse* nervous wreck!  :)

I told you yesterday about the moments leading up to the ceremony...well, when the video was almost done and the song began that was for my walk, my dad and coordinator came over to have me get ready.  I told them that it still needed to get halfway through the song before it was my turn to get up and walk down the aisle.  So I wanted to sit as long as possible since I knew I'd be standing in that monstrous dress for a while and I was already feeling suffocated, strangled and like I was going to pass out!

Just as it got to the moment before the break in the song for my entrance, I stood up and began to walk to the bridge with my dad...and then we were off! 

Disclaimer:  This video was created using raw footage courtesy of Video Keepsakes of Beverly Hills. 
It was created by me strictly for recap purposes and therefore will not necessarily be great quality. 
There will be things you probably shouldn't hear and shaky footage in certain places. 
Thank you for your understanding.

I love the conversation in the beginning of the video between Mr Fix It and our pastor, Lyle as they make their way to the altar. Even then they were in doubt of the video being played.

As my coordinator, Amanda fluffed out my train at the very last moment, I remember her saying:

"Ok, Stacey - Flowers low, smile BIG and walk SLOW! This is your moment, soak it all in!"

I just said 'Yep' right then, but when I replay that line in my head, it totally makes me cry now!  How I wish I would have remembered everything she said and put it into action...but I totally didn't!

As a matter of fact, at the time, I totally didn't even hear the song as I was walking down the aisle.  I listened to it right up until the moment when I knew I needed to take my first step and then it was all about seeing my guests, hanging on to Dad's arm and looking up the aisle at Mr. Beever as I made the turn to walk towards him.  I remember right as I got to that turn that I paused very other coordinator tried to quickly fluff my train again and I remember one thing, clear as day in my mind:  In that brief moment, I took the biggest, deepest breath of my life and had a huge smile on my face.  I was fighting back the tears and totally contained them because as soon as I started walking, I just tried to keep my eyes on my groom.  And then we got to the end of the aisle...
TODAY'S WEDDING TIP:  After the ceremony, my officiant told me he had 'a lot of doubt' about the video when I was describing it to him.  But he said that it was totally perfect and worked so great for how I wanted it to be introduced.  I definitely listen to people when they raise valid points about issues or concerns with plans I want to enact...but in the end, if you have a vision and you know it will work out, then don't let anyone deter you from the plan!  My processional was anything but traditional and I loved it!!!  And so did the guests as you'll see soon in the next video recap :)

Unless otherwise indicated, all photos by Robert Mullins Photography

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Wed Video recap: Moments before...

So it was just moments before 5:00 pm when the ceremony was supposed to start.  I knew the guests had been arriving (heck, we even passed some of them an hour earlier while we were wandering the grounds taking photos!).  But for some reason, the guests apparently hadn't been sat yet because my mom and the best man came in asking me what was going on.  I told them to bring me my coordinator.

I didn't feel like we saw our coordinators much during the day.  Even when they were there helping at the ceremony, I don't remember them being around other than my main girl, Amanda.  She came in and I told her to have the aisle opened and the groomsmen start seating guests and she took off.  My mom and sister said every time they needed her they couldn't find her but I know her and her team were super busy setting up all the cocktail and reception area and handling other things.

Again, since we didn't really get to practice at our rehearsal, our ushers had no idea what was going on.  Plus, because of the zoo path, we had some guests coming in through the back of the ceremony area instead of across the bridge so they were not getting programs or getting seated by ushers.

I had forgot to tell the groomsmen and coordinators that some of my family/friends would have to sit on the grooms' side since I had twice as many guests as Mr Fix It.  But apparently my mom told a bunch of our family where to sit so that helped.  However, it's funny...we reserved the first 5 rows on each side for family and then half of them ended up standing in the back of the ceremony area with their kids walking around during the ceremony so the front rows were totally empty and the back rows were packed!!! :)

My mom insisted my coordinator was not around to tell everyone what to do and when to walk down the aisle and such but then my BM's told me that my coordinator was there telling them to 'walk fast' because the song was ending before they had enough time to get down the aisle.  So I don't know what the deal was but since I was tucked away, I didn't have a clue what was happening and it all worked out.

After the processional, the video started.  One of the videographers, Jamie, came in to talk to me while this was going on.  After Jamie walked out, it was just me in that room alone.  I was getting anxious, nervous, faint...whatever.  I was glad to be able to listen to the video and guests because it sort of took my mind off of what was about to happen.  Thankfully, I had my dad there. 

He would walk in and out trying to watch the video while talking to me at the same time.  He knelt down and asked me how I was doing and I told him I was worried about passing out.  He just looked at me and said "Just breathe.  Calm down.  It's going to be great."  I remember he took my hand and that was so comforting.  Funny because my dad lives in Houston and we really don't have much of a relationship anymore...but time and distance and the life that keeps people separated cannot break the love and bond of family. 

Just as it was time for me to stand up and walk down the aisle I stood in the door way.  For whatever reason, I looked behind me.  Remember how I told you back here about the spots on my dress?  Well, what I saw when I looked down just 60 seconds before I was supposed to walk down the aisle should have sent me reeling!  There were HUGE black streaks down my gown!  I have absolutely no idea where they came from...before the processional started, my sister and cousin A had taken me outside and inspected the gown and dabbed and removed all the dirt and spots they could find.  I had only been sitting in a chair during the processional and video and the chair wasn't dirty so who knows what happened? 

Amanda was standing just outside the door next to my dad and I calmly said "Amanda.  Amanda!  I need you to grab those paper towels and that bottle of water and start getting those stains off of my gown." 

As I walked out of the room, she carried my train blotting and wiping as we were walking.   No matter what, I was getting down that aisle whether my dress was ripped, stained or falling off of me!  I wish the videographer had filmed this...he shot me standing up and noticing it and calling her over, but then shut off the camera until right before I took my dad's arm. 

Disclaimer: This video was created using raw footage courtesy of Video Keepsakes of Beverly Hills.
It was created by me strictly for recap purposes and therefore will not necessarily be great quality.
There will be things you probably shouldn't hear and shaky footage in certain places.
Thank you for your understanding.

Looking back, I can't believe how calm I stayed.  Apparently, the streaks/stains must have still been visible because in the raw video footage at the very end of the ceremony as me and Mr Fix It were walking across the bridge I heard him telling me that my sister didn't handle my gown right because the back of my dress was totally dirty.  It wasn't her fault, she didn't even know about it.  And you can't see it in any pictures or it must have been an up close and personal thing.  Oh well...such is life at a wedding...and all that mattered was I was dying to see my groom on that altar!

Unless otherwise indicated, all photos by Robert Mullins Photography

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

H-moon Recap: Video of SCARY Bali!

If you've never been outside of the US, you may not know that most of the world drives on the left side of the road...or as I like to call it:  The *wrong* side of the road!

Thankfully, Mr Fix It is an international traveler and is used to this.  So when we arrived in Australia and picked up our rental car, he was able to easily adapt and became the official driver of the trip.  The main thing I learned in Australia is that it's basically like home, but they have a lot of different signs and lots of turnabouts.  If you don't know what those are, they are basically round intersections where no one ever has to stop.  They look like this:

And you're warned about them with this sign:

I really loved the signs in's a few that are a little different from what we have back here in the States:

Cross walk

Instead of a sign showing a rest stop/area ahead, they tell you this:

Instead of 'Exit' signs, the airport directed us with this:
It made me feel like they were trying to tell me to get the hell out and FAST!

And instead of a passing lane sign, they call it:

Anyway, as far as the roundabouts, we don't really have these anywhere at home.  On about day 4 of our stay in Oz, we finally figured out the program and learned that you have to stay to the inside of the circle if you are going through to the 3rd or 4th exit...otherwise, you are forced to exit on the first or second street you come up to. 

Mr Fix It was scared that I would be a total stress case because we both argue with each other over who is the worse driver.  He likes to sight see while driving which freaks the heck out of me since you should typically have your eyes on the road while your hands are on the steering wheel, but I guess that isn't the case in his world.  I stayed pretty calm for the entire trip...even during the one or two times he drove down the *wrong* side of the road in Australia!

But driving in Bali was entirely different.  Nothing could have prepared me for the carnage that they provide by means of motor vehicle transportation. 

First off, we had to rent a car that was basically an ancient mini van to store Mr Fix It's surfboards in it because you're not supposed to drive with anything on the roof or a rack.  After spending an hour at the airport trying to negotiate the terms of a week long rental, we finally jumped into a little van and headed off to find a hotel...only to notice after pulling out of the airport and into the city that the rental car company gave us a car on EMPTY!!!  WTH?!?  We hadn't even exchanged our money yet so we had no rhupia and no way of finding a gas station in this little 3rd world country.

We proceeded to try to yell out to passers by "Petrol?!?" asking where a gas station was...they pointed and repeated petrol but we never found one from their directions.  Thank the Lord we finally came across one and filled up.  And thankfully, we only had to fill the tank once the entire week.  No problem...except the next day while pulling out early to find our first beach spot, the car suddenly jerked forward and we found that there were no lower gears in the manual transmission...Mr Fix It was left at an intersection with only 2nd and 4th gear.  Again, thankfully, we hadn't driven too far so we headed back to the airport and made the guy get us a new vehicle and we were finally on our way.

As we pulled out onto the streets and into the culture and city, I found myself pretty amazed by how different life was here than in my beautiful Orange County in So Cal.  There were motorbikes everywhere!!!  And horrible roads and traffic no matter what time of the day.  I can't even begin to describe it, so I will let this video give you a firsthand experience...enjoy me and Mr Fix It's commentary of a few days of brief video I shot while we were about and about:

Monday, June 21, 2010

Reflections on Marriage: Protection

So we're walking across the street in a sidewalk on Main St in Seal Beach on Friday night on our way to dinner at Whalt's Wharf.  Mr Fix It says to me "You know when we're crossing the street like this, you always need to walk on the inside left side of me."  I looked at him and he said "You know why?"  I responded, "So I don't get hit by a car?"  He answered "So if a car is going to hit one of us, I can be the one to get hit and hopefully prevent you from getting injured."

Nothing makes a woman feel more loved than a man who wants to protect her.  (swooning)

Afterthought:  At dinner, two ladies at the table next to us kept staring and smiling at Mr Fix It.  As they got up to leave, one of them walked by him and said "You were great in your last movie."  Mr Fix It just smiled and nodded.  I laughed and said "Why didn't you ask her who she thinks you are?!?"  He said he didn't want to disappoint her.  :)  If you remember, Mr Fix It is sometimes told he looks like Matt Damon or Kevin Bacon.  :) 

Photos courtesy of Yan Freedline (VideoKeepsakes of Beverly Hills)

Friday, June 18, 2010

H-moon Recap: Thievery all over the world - Part 2

So I wish I could say our only experience with crooks abroad was the stolen sunglasses on our last day in Australia, but unfortunately, we had a few run ins one evening while in Bali as well.

Mr Fix It had warned me that he doesn't like to pay for anything with credit cards in Indonesia because they are known for stealing your information and using the cards after you visit their stores and whatever.  So he took a few thousand dollars cash.  (We did however pay for our hotels with our credit card because they're a bit more trustworthy and we were getting credits for travel rewards points by using the credit card.)

Of course, when you're in a foreign country, you need to exchange your money for the local Indo's case, it's called Rhupia.  And the exchange rate is was like 9,000 Rhupia to one US Dollar.  Mr Fix It only liked to change in about $100 (maybe $200) at a time.  Partly because it's not easy to count out over a million rhupia to verify what you're getting back.  And Mr. Fix It was pretty adamant that we would be double counting everything that we exchanged.  He had an experience where they tried to short change him once on a previous visit.  And partly because that way you don't end up with a bunch of rhupia leftover that you have to try to change back into USD which is not going to be as good exchange rate wise.

I didn't think much of it.  And our first couple nights in Kuta, we didn't have too hard a time finding some decent money changers to honestly exchange our hundred bucks.  All you needed to do was look for these signs outside any of the shops on the street:

And they are everywhere!  Like every 10 to 20 yards there was another money changer.  But we would walk around trying to find the ones who had a higher exchange rate.  Some offered 9300 rhupia to the USD.

And therein lies the problem...about the 3rd night of our trip.  We needed to exchange some money for dinner and shopping.  Well, just about every money changer that you walk up to looks like this:

See that super high desk you have to walk up to?  It is how the crooks protect themselves!  First of all, you have to offer them smaller currency.  We always gave them $100 bills and they would inspect them thinking they were fake first of all.  Then a few of them even told us that if they weren't 'newer' bills, they'd offer us a lower exchange rate.  We would ask them if we were getting the 9300 rate and they would say yes.  Then they'd count out the money.  They'd pull out a calculator to show you the amount you should get and suddenly they'd punch in a rate of only 8900 or something.  So Mr Fix It would call them out saying "Hey, it says 9300 out there on the sign!"  And they would say, "Oh, there's an 8% commission."  Or they'd say "Oh, this bill is dated in 2003 so it's not new enough...lower rate."  THIEVES!

But that isn't totally thievery...however, on this particular night, we saw some of the best magicians we'd ever encountered.  Even better than the one who had amazing slight of hand at our own wedding!

See, they'd count out 900,000.00 rhupia on the counter.  And they lay it out in piles of like 100,000 each or whatever.  I would pick up each pile and count it.  Then they'd tell you to put it back down.  Or they would just take it back from you after it was all counted and act like they were wrapping it all up together.  They'd hand it back, and I would count it yet again!  Only this time, it would be missing money.  Anywhere from 100,000 to 750,000 at one changer we went to! 

I would say "Um, where's the other 250,000?"  To which they would pull all the money back from me, give us back our $100 bill and then respond, "You need to go to another changer.  We aren't doing business with you."  And Mr Fix It would say "Why?  Because we know you are a thief and we aren't stupid enough for you to trick us?"  One time he told the guy "You guys are really good magicians...we are totally watching your hands and we can't see how your dropping the money behind the counter."

This went on in literally like 8 to 10 places we visited in less than an hour.  I was seriously getting pissed at this point and Mr Fix It knew I was frustrated and hungry.  As we walked by this one shop, the guy stopped Mr Fix It and asked him to buy a watch.  Mr Fix It did in fact want to buy a watch but told him he didn't have any rhupia because he couldn't find an honest money changer!

This nice sales guy walked us around the corner to an official bank that was open at like 8:30 pm at night and there we found the honest place to exchange our money.  It was nice to have a reputable place to be able to do business, however, they only offered us 8900 per USD.  That's how the thieves lure you into their places. 

So we just used the banks from that point on.  I have to say, you can also exchange money at most hotels as they are also honest, but again, a lower exchange rate.  And we did in fact have a couple money changers that didn't try to pull a fast one on us and gave us a good rate....but not many. 

What about all you ladies?  Did you have any unfortunate experiences while visiting foreign countries?  Be sure if you are going abroad for honeymoons and trips that you do some internet research and check to see what you should look out for and be concerned about.  The US Government sites also give you some good warnings to consider when well as entry and exit information and requirements.  We had to pay like $50 to get visas in Bali where it was only about $18 each for Australia.  But Australia didn't charge us when we left their country whereas Indonesia does charge you another fee for an exit visa!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

H-moon Recap: Thievery all over the world!

This post will not include any photos...because how do you take photos of total crooks?!? 

Our honeymoon was a great experience...except for two specific things/incidents. 

After spending a glorious 7 days relaxing and basically doing nothing in Australia, we packed up all of our belongings into the rental car, said goodbye to the amazing husband and wife managers of the apartments we had been staying at and headed off for the airport.  We needed to re-fuel the rental car so we pulled into the gas station right next door to the apartments.  Mr Fix It ran in to pay for the gas, buy some Rockstar energy drinks (bleck!) and then pumped the gas and jumped in the car.  As soon as we pulled out of the gas station, he reached for the sunglasses he had placed on top of his head since the sun was out...only to realize they weren't there.  He frantically began looking through the car and then suddenly said "Oh man!  I think I set them down on the counter when I was paying for the gas." 

Now why he would take them off of his head to set them down I don't know, but whatever.  We made a quick u-turn and headed back into the gas station.  Only when Mr Fix It jumped out and ran in to retrieve them, the man behind the counter informed him that the gentlemen who was in line behind him had picked them up and carried them off.  What a total thief!!! I swear, we weren't even gone three minutes before we came back and some loser in Oz had to ruin the last moments we had in the country by stealing something from us! 

Mr Fix It was not happy but what are you gonna do?  He ended up buying a cheap pair of $4 sunglasses in Bali to get him through the next week til we returned home.  Which leads me to my next story...stay tuned tomorrow!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Wed recap: Red is so *not* my color...

...but for some reason, I totally wanted it all over my wedding.  So not like me.  It has never been a favorite color of mine at all.  In fact, I don't think I even own one solid red piece of clothing really other than maybe a t-shirt or two.  Actually, I do have a pair of super cute red velvety type pants.  I only wear them at Christmas though. 

Whenever I saw red at weddings I've been to in the past, I would totally think "Um, very original.  Really?  The best you could come up with was the color of love and Valentine's day?  Wow, lots of thought went into this one."  Isn't that horrible to be so judgmental?  But I was.

So what made me suddenly decide to incorporate red in my own wedding so much so that it is seen in everything from the flowers to the bridesmaid dresses to the favor boxes to the groomsmen vests to the favors to the votives and the linens?  I guess because it really is a deep, rich, romantic color.  That and the fact that it is always cheaper easy to find flowers in that color. 

I tried to offset this 'red' infusion by leaning towards more of a cranberry/burgundy red and not a bright traditional red.  I think I did a good job.  I loved the color.  I guess some colors are just classic and cannot lead you wrong.  Anyway, the reason I share all of this is to preface all these pics from my photog, Robert Mullins of the red details, touches, attire and decor of our wedding.  Here ya go!

Our sweetheart table.  We needed to keep it simple because we had them 'tear it down' as soon as we were finished eating to make room on the dance floor.

One of the tall centerpieces.  I loved these.  They were inspired by a much more simple version of white tulips sprayed out of a tall vase and we added more green to bring in more of the spring appeal.

A table with the low version of the centerpieces before the tables were completely set up.  I like this shot because it focuses on all the touches of cranberry red - the satin linen napkins, the votive candles, the chinese takeout favor boxes and the circus box kid's favor boxes as well as the burgundy colored dahlias sitting in the tiny little votive vases.

A closer up shot of the low centerpiece which displays all of the elements above
after the guests had invaded the tables!

I took a wicker basket from Michael's that was on sale for 40% off and bought some red silk fabric.  My mom wrapped it around the wicker basket and sewed it up to create our flip flop basket.  We now use the basket for laundry after the wedding :)

Of course, I *had* to incorporate the red throughout the stationery and favor items.  These were the little tissue packs we created as an afterthought after seeing them on several blog sites.

We were even able to have the photobooth company incorporate red as the backdrop for our pictures (favors) for the guests and guestbook!

Though not completely assembled yet, this picture shows the red elements at the ceremony area:  Tulips submerged in the vase that the larger sprays sat on top of, the red boxes that the floral arrangements sat on and the red gerbera daisies at the end of each aisle.

Again, I incorporated the red on the stationery these signs we put at the end of the first five rows saving the seats for family members.  (Courtesy of Serendipity Designs)

Here's a shot of the ceremony area once the guests were seated showing the aisle adorned with deep red petals and the cranberry linen cloth on the communion and unity cross table.

Of course there were my fabulous red shoes that I so adore!!!

And the beautiful bouquet from Allison of Flower Allie that was filled with different shades of deep reds.

I was totally in love with the bridesmaid dresses (Jasmine B2) and their bouquets.

Here's the entire wedding party showing the red ties/vests, gowns and florals all together.
Just love it in this setting at the venue!

I even custom designed (with the help of my wonderful jewelery designer/maker, Jeanette Readinger) gifts for my bridesmaids that were necklaces incorporating the colors of the cranberry red and turquoise gems.

So let's hear it, ladies?  Was there something you just fell in love with regarding your wedding that you never thought you would want or use or incorporate or maybe wasn't part of your normal style?

PS:  I will go into more detail about the florals and other items I mentioned here in future recaps more specific to those items :)