Thursday, October 27, 2011

Bridesmaids Galore

I have a scandalous amount of bridesmaids. Eight. I've noticed that in Weddingbee world this is often considered a humungo number. Some people think it's downright ridiculous. Honestly, most New York weddings have big wedding parties. Even though I'm not doing the New York thang for our wedding, I guess I can't shake that part of my "wedding culture." It might sound like an excessive amount of girls, but they are all my bridesmaids for good reason.

My sister is my maid of honor, then I have my two best friends from home, my four best college friends, and my sorority little sister who is a major reason why Mr. P and I are even together. We may not get to see each other as much as we used to, we may not get to speak to each other as much as we want to, but I know these girls would be there for me no matter what. They have been there supporting me and Mr. P's relationship since day one, so it only makes sense that they stand beside us on our big day.

Has it been difficult coordinating schedules and getting everyone in one place? Yes. There are always ways around things though, and we've made it work. Our only group shot may be on the day of the wedding, but that's okay. Life is busy and messy like that.

When it came time to ask these ladies to be my bridesmaids I decided I wanted to be a big cheeseball. I called it a brunch day (obviously they all knew why we were eating brunch) and whipped up a fritata, muffins, fruit salad, bought some bagels, and poured mimosas.

My first time making muffins - I was overly proud of myself

Some of the spread

Each girl got a little picture frame with a shot of us from sometime through the years, and a card I printed up on cardstock. Since, yes, it's hard to get everyone in the same place at one time, half of my bridesmaids couldn't make it that day.  And, because I fail at life, I still have four presents for my remaining bridesmaids in a box at my desk. (So, hit me up ladies.) Whoops! I need to re-attach my head to my body sometimes. I have no good excuse.

I can't believe how long ago this was now that I am looking back at these pictures (at our first place)! It seems like an eternity ago, and in just a few months the big day will be here. Wacky.

Did you go the route of having a lot of bridesmaids? How do you tackle the logistics of handling a big bridal party?

*all pictures are personal photos

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Control Monster

I have this thing where I like to be in control of stuff. I don’t know what it is. Maybe it’s the redhead domineering gene. (What you never heard of that gene before?) But, alas, I like to know what is going on. I like to do a lot of the decision-making on things I’m involved in. So, when it comes to wedding stuff, you can imagine just how antsy pantsy I can get if something falls out of my control. I swear it's not me being a Bridezilla. I am just like this every single day of my life regardless of the bride role.

Even though Mr. Porcupine supported the decisions, I really did most of the research for all of our vendors. The vendors we picked were mutual agreements because Mr. Porcupine and I have similar tastes/opinions on things, but I was the one to pick the "top threes."  Mr. P is pretty good at the “if you love, I love it” game, plus he didn't really have the time to do a lot of the wedding research, so we didn’t have any issues in that department.

Now that the wedding is actually coming up and our long engagement is winding to a close, my own actual wedding events are coming up. Say whaaa? I get to have a bachelorette party and a bridal shower? I’ve been so accustomed to going to everyone else’s wedding events that I almost forgot that I get this stuff too. And, this stuff that I get, I have NO control over. Cue the itching...

Now this isn’t to say I want any control whatsoever. I like surprises and I do not want something else to plan. I, without a doubt, appreciate people doing all the planning and work for my bridal shower and bachelorette party (THANKS YOU GUYS), but it feels weird! There is information being distributed to my family and friends that I DON’T KNOW ABOUT. I hate not knowing what is going on. It drives me up the wall. I've been so used to knowing what is going on for all of my bride friends. I'm not used to being on the bride side. I need a facebook-like ticker of what is happening in the corner of my eyeball.

Yes, I am definitely all up in the crazy department. I am right on my way to being the Director of Lunacy Affairs and Distribution. I cant help it. It's my thing. So is eating chocolate by the boatload. We all have our things, people! But. I definitely can not wait for my shower and bachelorette. I still feel really weird that it is my turn, but I can’t wait to see what is in store for me.

Anyone else have a need for control during the wedding process?

Monday, October 24, 2011

An Easter Bunny honeymoon

When it came time to choose our honeymoon spot, there were a few things Mr. Porcupine and I decided upon pretty early. We've been incredibly lucky to go on some great vacations together. So far we've been to Puerto Rico, Mexico (twice), and on a cruise around the Caribbean islands. 

[Vacationing in Cancun]/Personal Photo

[Drinks in the pool- our fav.]/ Personal Photo

[Sunset in Puerto Rico]/Personal Photo

What we love most about these vacations is being near water (any water that is not the murky Atlantic ocean will do) with a fruity beverage in-hand relaxing. What we hate the most is the horrible humidity and heat that accompanies some of these beautiful spots. So when it came time to figure out where to go on our honeymoon, we wanted to find a way to have what we wanted without the heavy heat.

Our first thought was a European cruise. 

Image via The Cruise Girl

I've never been to Europe before, even though Mr. Porcupine has, and I've always wanted to go. We thought this might be the best way to see a lot of Europe in a short span of time. We did a little preliminary research, and soon realized that this idea was out of the equation for a few reasons.
  1. The timing was going to overlap with Easter, which we thought might pose a problem in Europe's predominately Catholic countries.
  2. We needed a 2-week span of time for most of the cruises we were interested in, and we didn't want to take more than a week's worth of vacation time for our honeymoon.
  3. These kind of cruises require a lot of planning and sight-seeing and a lot less sitting around like slugs.
Next up, we considered honeymooning in Costa Rica. 

Costa Rica seemed like a good combination of adventure and relaxation. I've always heard that Costa Rica is pure paradise. Plus, I thought it would be fun to explore the rain-forests, zip-line, and spend a lot of time in-between relaxing. But, again, we came up with the Easter issue. A little bit of research showed that Costa Rica is a predominantly Catholic country. Many places close down during the holiest of days and the rest of the time becomes a popular beach holiday with packed beaches. We soon decided to scratch the idea. 

During all of the honeymoon decision-making I had one destination hiding in the crevices of my brain.  I've always wanted to go to Hawaii. Why not go there on our honeymoon? It would be the perfect reason to go clear across the United States and attend a luau. 

At first Mr. Porcupine hesitated because it seemed too cliche to him. But, after some more research he soon decided I was right. Hawaii is a perfect combination of what we want to do - a lot of relaxing and a little exploring. Not so hot that we will melt, and a lot more tourist-friendly during Easter.

Image via

We decided on the Big Island after a lot of research. Each island has so much to offer, but we're really interested in checking out the Volcanoes National Park which is located on the Big Island. Although we could island hop, since I'm not a big fan of flying we decided that staying put in one place is the best idea. Our two flights from New York (adding up to over 12+ hours in the sky) are enough for me. There's only so much Xanax I want to have to inhale. (Not funny, don't abuse Xanax. Only use under your doctor's care to treat the in-air crazies).

I can not wait to drink a Mai-Tai, take a hula lesson, road trip over to the volcanoes, and soak up some of the Hawaiian sun into my translucent skin (after proper sunblock protection, of course). I just have to make it through another frigid New York City winter, and, oh yea, finish planning our wedding.

Did holidays or timing effect your honeymoon plans? Anyone have some great Big Island recommendations from their own honeymooning?

Sunday, October 23, 2011


When I first thought of wedding shoes, I thought "mmm, k."

I am not a shoe girl. I have never paid more than maybe 75 bucks for a pair of dressy shoes. I think the most expensive pair of shoes I own are my Uggs. Does that count? And, yes, I don't care how "uggly" they are, I love me some Uggs.

Early on in planning I decided I wanted my something blue to be my shoes. Plus, factoring in our peacock/blue color scheme I thought it made a lot of sense.

Apparently I am unconsciously trying to BE Carrie Bradshaw on my wedding day (minus the part where my groom loses his ish and ditches me, only to propose later with some Manolos), because not only did she have the blue shoes, but she also had that peacock thing going on.

Image via Bitten and Bound

The infamous Sex and the City Manolos via Neiman Marcus

Oh boo, I swear I did not do this intentionally. I am much more of a Charlotte. Oh, well. There are worse comparisons in life.

My one hurdle in this blue shoe shopping game has been that I can't decide if I want to commit to blue flats. Mr. Porcupine is only about four inches taller than me, and I don't want to tower over him in pictures. I can't seem to find too many low heel/wedge options that are blue.  And, besides for all that height garbage, I really love the idea of blue flats. Lord knows I will be kicking off any sort of heels I wear once the dancing gets underway.

So far there are a few shoes in the running that I keep putting off buying. I keep waiting for a shoe to pop up out of nowhere that beats all of these. But, with my first fitting slowly creeping up, I think it's time I just pick some shoes and be done with it.

An affordable navy low heeled Nina shoe via which would work 
perfectly with a peacock shoeclip

A not so affordable Badgley Mischka flat via

Sparkly flat via

Another good option to wear with a peacock shoe clip via DSW

Me Too blue flats via Zappos
Stop TORTURING me Kate Spade via Zappos

If I could rationalize spending a lot of money I would have Kate Spades sent directly to my door. But, I don't think I can really find a good reason to ever spend that much money on something people will barely see on my wedding day.  

To flat or not to flat? Anyone have a favorite from these (minus those Kate Spades I can NOT afford)? Any online shoe shop suggestions (minus Zappos, Endless, and DSW which I've covered)? 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Negative Nelly Syndromatic Psychosis

In case you haven't noticed by now I have a super dry sense of humor. I'm also overly realistic. Mr. Porcupine likes to remind me that I am using the wrong "tic," and that in reality I am overly pessimistic. Whatever, such a literalist. If I had only gotten a degree in psychology I might have been able to pinpoint a new disorder with lots of grant-funded research that I like to call: Negative Nelly Syndromatic Psychosis. (Yes, I completely made that crap up.)

The thing is, yes, Mr. P is probably right. I don't know why the hell I'm like this. I haven't had enough bad crap happen to me in life to be sooo jaded (minus that time I got laid off twice in 1 and 1/2 years, and that other time I got mugged the eve of Christmas Eve-so what if I'm Jewish, Jesus was pissed!) Obviously this is a really fun mentality to have wired into your DNA when you're a bride.

Basically I will find one little detail of my life that is pissing me off and hold that over every other good thing going on. Suddenly everything positive is immediately discounted. Even if there is a ratio of 1 shitty life happening to 25 good life happenings, I will find a way to feel overly depressed about that 1 little thing. Currently my life peeve is that we may be moving sooner than anticipated (because, hi, we JUST moved 4 months ago), and this is sending me into a whirlwind of annoyance. HATE moving, moving is expensive, where do we even go, finding a place is stressful, I wanted to wait until AFTER the wedding to move again so we'd have some funding for new furniture, I hate touching our savings, ETC. Completely discounting: wahoo I got a raise, we're going to a destination wedding in Mexico soon, I love Fall, my own wedding events are finally coming up, I'm very fortunate to have parents/in-laws that are gifting us our wedding, Mr. P and I are both employed, Taco Thursday....

So, yes, I tend to let little things get me down even when a lot of other good stuff is going on. I'm trying to turn that off so that by the day of the wedding if it's raining, hailing, I'm bloated, a wild turkey runs onto my ceremony (I dunnoz it's PA- they have turkeys?), or a bird craps on my forehead I can just laugh. Most likely I will be fine and dandy minus a few minor meltdowns that I'm sure will occur when I have a giant zit on my cheek and a puffed-out hair-day. Sorry, that was my N.N.S.P. pipping in.

The trick to N.N.S.P. is that I only have it towards my own life/wedding. Every time someone else tells me something shitastic happening to them I always point out the good stuff counteracting it. For instance, as my good friend via the New Yawk wedding unloaded a lot of wedding stress on me, I was annoyingly handy with a happy comeback. (Sorry, you will have to do this for me now.) When it threatened to rain through her pre-wedding pictures I collected a bunch of cute rainboot and umbrella pictures from wedding blogland and sent them off to her. If someone did this to me I would probably tell them to take a jog in a swamp (lovingly).

So, how does one shake their N.N.S.P.? I swear on the new season of the Real Housewives of Atlanta (premiering soon, YAY!) that I am trying my best to be more POSITIVE, HAPPY, and PRECIOUS. I am revolting against all my DNA swirlygigs (technical term) to think of shiny, bright meadows when it comes to wedding stressors.

Anyone else suffer from N.N.S.P. when thinking of their wedding day (or life)?

Monday, October 17, 2011

New Yawk State of Mind

A New York wedding can be many things. A traditional New York wedding consists of TONS of delicious food, is held in a beautiful chandeliered ballroom, and consists of lots and lots of partying. I mentioned before that I don’t want a traditional New York wedding and am going for a more rustic-chic look. This is not to say that I don’t LOVE attending a New York-style wedding. I've found that they are some of the best to go to, but I may be a little bias on that. I thought I would give the Hive a taste of what a “New York style” wedding is, something that Miss Fox and I mentioned that may have left people from other parts of the United States/Earth stumped. Plus, who doesn’t love some wedding visuals on Weddingbee?

Here goes! Let's refer to my friends as Mr. and Mrs. Bear. I’ve known the Bears for quite some time. Mr. Bear and I went to High School together, and then we moved onto the same college. Mrs. Bear was my first college friend (after my roommate). Sometime during the first week of freshmen year I had a dorm party. Mr. and Mrs. Bear both attended, met each other, and the rest is history! So, if you’re counting, that would mean they have been together for almost 8 years. We have all been waiting patiently for this wedding day. Prepare for picture overload!

The day was pretty dreary until right before the ceremony was set to begin. The sun came out just in time for them to get all those first look/wedding party pics. Good karma juju at its best!

The sun coming out on the beautiful property at The Swan Club

The ceremony space

Here comes the Bride with her Pops


After the ceremony we moved onto the cocktail hour, which is notoriously a meal in itself. Cocktail hour consisted of a pasta bar, an array of meats, eggplant parmesan, sausage and peppers, short ribs, hummus, cheeses, a huge seafood boat, and paella (I'm sure I'm missing a few key items as well).

Various dishes being served at cocktail hour

Pasta bar

Seafood Boat with a huge castle ice sculpture

For dinner and dancing we moved into the ballroom, which was decked out with a purple Fall theme.

Photo via The Swan Club because it was too dark for me to get a good shot
 on my crappy point and shoot

Pumpkin centerpieces

The guest tree guestbook and table numbers

Cards went into the white pumpkin

After a cantaloupe and prosciutto appetizer and salad we had four options for dinner. I went for the steak.

Yes, that is one serving of steak!

And, of course there was a lot of dancing.

Mrs. Bear and I taking a break on the dance floor

After the garter toss

Wedding cake cutting time

An infamous part of any New York wedding is the Venetian hour which consists of TONS of dessert options. Along with the red velvet wedding cake there were cakes, pastries, fruit, an ice cream bar, and mousse just to name some of the array of treats.

Venetian Hour goodness!

I went with mousse (with sprinkles, I'm a child), black forest cake and chocolate covered strawberries

Happy Wedding Day Bears!

It was a really fun evening. It reminded me that I better get a move on with my own wedding planning. I have used this wedding and an upcoming destination wedding for another good friend as a point of reference for when I need to seriously start planning. My motto for so long has been "well after everyone else gets married I'll worry about that..." I guess it's time to start worrying about "that."

**all photos are personal except where noted

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Accessories Addict

I have a problem I need to own up to. I have a serious addiction to all things accessories. My need for accessories can not be quelled. For one, I thought this would be a good organization solution:

Personal photo of my lame closet

It’s now a tangled mess, and that’s just a touch of the mass heap I own.

You know I’m having a bad day if I haven’t put in the effort to add a necklace or earrings into the mix. Less accessories=stay away. So, it seems only fitting that I should stock up on wedding day accessories.

To start, I bought this on a whim after a particularly good sale on DSW’s online wedding shop. I’m not entirely sure how I feel about it in-person. It mighttt be a little too sequiny grandma-ish (I think my grandma actually pawned something similar off to me), but I strangely like it. It’ll be useful for holding some tissues, a compact, bobby pins and the like, and fits in with the peacockness of everything.

Then, a friend found this ring at the awesome seasonal Lee Angel sample sale. They manufacture the jewelry for a lot of stores, such as JCrew and Ann Taylor. I thought it would go perfect, and I’ll be sure to slip it on after the ceremony.

As my shoe hunt begins, I’m leaning towards doing a peacock shoe clip on a simple blue flat or low heeled shoe. I have one bookmarked away on Etsy to purchase soon.

Image via 2cutebowsdesigns on Etsy

Deciding on necklace/earrings will be my biggest challenge because I am a serious nutcase. I can’t decide if I should do the traditional pearl studs and pearl necklace, or get a little bit wackier. And, by wackier I don't mean a spike necklace or leather choker. I mean something chunky and trendy along the lines of Mrs. Panther's awesome Lee Angel necklace. That is a task for another day though.

I can’t help it. I love accessories. Almost more than clothes, and definitely more than shoes.

Do you have wedding day accessories picked out yet?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Well, how the heck did he pop the question?

I am going to interrupt this planning journey to take a stroll back in time (over a year ago, holy cow!) to tell you the story of how the Porcupines got engaged. I apparently blacked out for a moment when I was telling you about how we met and how Mr. Porcupine got the ring. I just stopped there, and went right into our planning journey, without even telling you the story of how the engagement went down.

Well, for starters, it was my 25th birthday (never saw that one coming.) I always thought it would be a more low-key engagement. Wrong! My birthday fell on a Sunday and we had gone out the night before with our friends. Here’s an idea of how the night went.

So, yeahhhh, it was a bacon, egg, and cheese/pure grease down my gullet kind of morning.

Mr. Porcupine had let me know he had plans to take me out to a nice restaurant in the city on Sunday (my actual birthday). He wouldn’t tell me where it was though. Only that I should dress-up. I had a dress and everything. AND pearls. I was feeling fancy.

I don’t remember what I did that day. I think I sat around like a bum. Come mid-afternoon I begged Mr. Porcupine to drive to dinner because the restaurant was all the way uptown, and Sunday craptastic Subway service + feeling less then stellar = WAH. He was being a major freakazoid all day, but finally agreed. So, I took my sweet time getting ready. More lagging around. Iron a strand of hair. Put eye make-up on one eye. Lag. Put make-up on the next eye. Etc.

Mr. Porcupine was getting really freakin’ antsy at this point. I had one nagging thought of, “Is he going to propose on my birthday??” But, I honestly never thought he’d propose on a pre-existing holiday (like my birth). Finally, I finish lagging, Mr. Porcupine pulls out a large box from his closet and out the door we go.

We go downstairs and BAM a limo! I didn’t even get a picture of it because I was in mass confusion. A limo looked so silly on our little narrow block full of brownstones, across from a Laundromat. I was all, “Huh, WHAT is this doing here?” So, Mr. Porcupine explains it’s for us, and I immediately felt like puking (in a good way). If he’s not proposing, I thought, he is mentally deranged for getting us a limo on my birthday!

Lo and behold, we get in the limo, and he doesn’t even wait for the driver to put up the partition between the driver and us. He tosses the giant box at me and makes me open the card. I read it, and it ends with, “this year for your birthday I have a very important question to ask….” He pops out the ring box (sneaky giant box decoy) and just stares at me, ghost-faced. NO QUESTION! In typical Miss Porcupine fashion, I say, “YOU HAVE TO ASK THE QUESTION!” So, he does, and then continues to stare blankly, so I had to put the ring on my own finger. Only us!

At this point the limo pulls out, and I am so excited, ready to call all my friends when Mr. Porcupine informs me everyone knows! Everyone knew for quite some time. And those who didn’t know, he had told the night before while we were out for my birthday. He just can not keep big news like that to himself. The only people who didn’t know? My parents and my sister! They were on vacation, and it took a half an hour to get a hold of them as they were lounging by the pool.

We drove around Manhattan for awhile and finally pull up to Park Avenue Summer, a really nice restaurant that changes its menu and name by the season. It was a really yummy meal and a beautiful restaurant. A great end to an exciting birthday.

My hunched-back gremlin pose

Really cool dessert

Official engaged photo (not sure what happened with the awkward cardigan button)

Did your engagement catch you off guard?

*all pictures are personal