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Come visit me on my new blog, Heather Drive. I hope to see you all on the other side!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

So far, so... fantastic

I had my LASIK eye surgery yesterday afternoon. And judging from the fact that I'm posting this, you can assume it all went well--it did.

I just returned from my post-op appointment this morning and I am already 20/20 in both eyes. Everything is still a little cloudy looking at this point, but it's all very normal and I'm doing really well. The doctor said I can do whatever I want now--read, watch TV, go on the computer, drive, etc. A SHOWER sounds nice, too.

I'll post something longer in the next few days to share the whole experience... I know there were several people who indicated they are interested in it and would like to know how it went. So I'll share specifics then. For now, I'm going to go veg on the couch and watch the daytime television I never get to see. And that's just the thing... I can SEE! :)

Monday, October 29, 2007

Wedding Nightmares

Alright, so I'm a little less than 8 months out... and it's happened.

I've started having wedding nightmares.

I don't wake up in cold sweats with my heart pounding or anything, but they are still NOT fun! I wake up in a panic, thinking... OK, well, that dream was reminding me of something I need to make SURE to do so the nightmare doesn't become a reality.

During the week last week sometime, I had a dream that our photographer didn't take any posed wedding photos of us together, or with our bridal party, with our parents/families, nothing. We hired "photojournalistic" photographers, so yeah, we want to keep that stuff to a minimum, but not to have ANY posed photos was surely not a good thing. So I woke up and thought to myself, "OK, we have to make sure to fill out that 'shot list' the Krackes gave to us!"

Then, on Saturday night, I had a dream about the wedding where all SORTS of things went wrong. First, it was like 20 minutes before the wedding was to start, and Michael came in the room and said to me, "OK, where are our clothes?" (meaning the guys' tuxes). I said, "I don't know, you were responsible for that." Turned out that he had never even ORDERED tuxes, let alone picked them up. Around that same time, I realized that we didn't have any wedding flowers. I had forgotten to arrange for someone to go pick them up for us. So I'm looking at the clock, and the wedding starts in like 5 minutes, and in my dream, I'm thinking... Michael and the guys don't have tuxes, we don't have flowers. AND, I'm not dressed. I didn't even have my stinkin' dress on. What chaos that whole dream was.

So I woke up on Sunday morning, and I had learned the following things from my "nightmare":

1) Make sure to be involved with the tux ordering/pick-up process.
2) Make sure to figure out who will go pick up the flowers since we're not having them delivered.
3) Plan to get dressed at LEAST an hour before the ceremony is to begin. And as a side to that, why was I still at the house 5 minutes before the wedding? Where was the LIMO in this dream? So there's a fourth lesson...
4) Make sure the limo is booked and on time, too.

I'm still 7+ months out. It's scary to think where the dreams can go from here.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

A weekend of projects

I am going in for my LASIK eye surgery on Tuesday, so I had a few projects for other brides that I wanted to be sure to complete before I went in. One is getting married in late November, the other in early December, so I knew they would be anxious to get their products completed and shipped to them so it would be one less thing for them to worry about. I don't anticipate having trouble with my eyes for too long following the surgery, but I wanted to be cautious and get these things done in advance.

Anyway, here are the latest projects:

I made this monogram banner for Melissa, who is getting married on November 23. Her colors are brown, ivory, and light pink, and she decided she wanted the big "S" to be in gold. I really love how this came out. She plans to hang it in her reception hall.

This is the other project I completed this weekend, a bride banner for Rachel, who is getting married on December 8. She wanted it to be simple, so she requested I make the banner without the ribbon edging, and using black lettering. I think it came out really nicely, and her little nephews/ring bearers will look adorable carrying it down the aisle.
This is a third project that I recently completed but never had a chance to post a photo. This is another bride banner, made for Louisa, who is getting married NEXT weekend (November 3)! I'm sure she's so excited. This photo is pretty dark for some reason, but Louisa had requested brown lettering on an ivory banner with gold ribbon edging.
As always, if you see something you like and you are interested in having me do a project for you, please contact me at roadtotheaisle@gmail.com. Even if it's something you're not sure I do, run it past me. I've had a few ladies contact me this past week with new ideas such as table squares and monogram table runners, and I'm happy and able to do those things for them, so I am!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Recent Monogram Designs

In addition to the aisle runners and banners I've been making for others, I've also been designing monograms. I've been meaning to get some examples up for a while now, but am just getting to it now.

When someone contacts me and asks me to create monograms, I generally create between 5-7 monogram concepts for them to look at and choose from. I can't include ALL of the monograms I've designed, but here are some examples of "FINAL" monograms--meaning the ones that have been chosen.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

New Eyes

A week from now, I will have new eyes! Well, not literally. But hopefully I'll be at home recovering from very successful LASIK eye surgery.

I decided to go ahead and schedule the surgery for October 30. The more people I talked to about it, the more I heard how great it is, and I just have to put my faith in this doctor and hope that all goes well. I've done my research, I've had the testing and measurements done, and they say I'm at low risk for complications. They turn away 25% of their potential patients because they don't think they are ideal candidates... so they are picky in who they will go forward and perform the surgery on. That certainly makes me feel better. I just don't want to be one of those people in the fraction-of-a-percent who regrets that they ever had it done. So please keep your fingers crossed and pray for a safe surgery for me! I'll certainly be posting again, hopefully with the news of fantastic results.

So my appointment is at 2:40 p.m. next Tuesday. I'm expected to be there for about 1.5-2 hours for the surgery, and then I'm supposed to come home and rest my eyes for the remainder of the day/night by keeping them closed as much as possible. Can't really read, watch TV, or go on the computer, but I'm doubting that I'm going to want to. Supposedly it sorta feels like you have sand in your eyes, so I imagine it will be more comfortable with my eyes closed anyway. Plus, hopefully I'll have a few lasting effects from the Valium they give before the surgery, and I'll just want to sleep it off.

I will leave work early on Tuesday for the surgery. I took off on Wednesday and Thursday so I can adjust. You're not really supposed to sit staring at a computer screen (which is essentially what I do at work) for a few days after the surgery, so I figured I'd take the two full days following the surgery. I plan to go back to work on Friday, but that's tentative until I see how everything goes and how well I can see. My first post-op appointment is first thing on Wednesday morning, so I'll probably have a pretty good idea of how things are going by then. Less than 24 hours after the procedure!

Anyway... like I said, keep me in your thoughts! I'm nervous, but this is something I've wanted to do for a long time. Here's hoping it's worth it.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Wedding website is up and running!

My future husband, being the web developer that he is, wanted to make our own website. He didn't want to use any of the wedding website services out there (that would have been too easy!). So he spent many hours putting together this website for us... and it's finally live!

We have password protected it, since we have information on there we wouldn't want just anyone to see. It's not HIGHLY SECRET information (we're not the pentagon), but we feel like it's still probably a good idea. We provided the password on our save-the-date cards. However, if you know me (like REALLY know me), and you'd like to take a peek... e-mail me and I'll be happy to share the password with you.

Michael and I collaborated on the actual look of the site. We used my save-the-date design as inspiration for how the whole thing would look. Here are a few screen grabs:

This is the landing page. When you first go to the website, this is what you see, and where you have to enter the password.

This is the homepage. Michael designed the banner using more of our engagement photos. It's pretty cool, because when you're actually on the site, it fades in and out of color and B&W. Since we had all photos in both versions, and liked them both, he found a way to incorporate both the color and B&W pics. The banner also has a countdown to the wedding, which is fun. We also have a little welcome paragraph, a form for people to request songs for the reception, and a photo slideshow on the right.

This is one of our inside pages. Again, I've blocked out some of the details. We have a section for "Details for Our Guests" which provides additional info about the wedding that we may not have room to include on the invitations later.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Well, we're into October

Last Friday, I finally put a deposit down for our flowers. We decided to go with Wegmans Pittsford. Well, I decided to go with Wegmans Pittsford. They're flowers, Michael really couldn't care less. So that was one other thing to check off the list. I met with them back in August to discuss what might work with my dress/bridesmaids dresses. I think we decided to go with hot pink and orange roses and pink and orange calla lilies for me, and a mixture of pink/orange roses and gerbera daisies for the girls. We'll see, though. I'm going to make another appointment for February or March to meet again to finalize everything. When I went in to put the deposit down, they were working on someone's centerpieces for a wedding the next day. They looked fabulous. So even though it's a grocery store, it's WEGMANS people! They do EVERYTHING right! :)

We saw Michael's sister, Melissa, over this last weekend. She's one of my bridesmaids, and she and her husband came up from Binghamton to visit with their new baby. It was the baby's first time meeting a lot of the family that lives up here, so it was nice for everyone. Plus I'm totally in absolute love with that baby, so I rather enjoyed seeing them, too. Here are a few pics that I love:

I *heart* my little nephew!

I also love men who love babies. This is Michael with the baby... so cute. I *heart* him, too.

Feeding little Brendan. With my lovely glasses on--ugh.

Speaking of glasses... I guess that's the latest exciting news. This morning, I went in for a LASIK consultation. That's why I was wearing my glasses in that photo. I had to have my contacts out for a week before the consultation so they could get accurate measurements of my eye. After the two hours of extensive measurements and testing, they said I'm a good candidate for the surgery. I have thick corneas, and they have no reason to believe I'll have any complications as a result of the surgery. It's still a little bit scary, so I need to think about it a little bit more. I was completely into it until they gave me the consent form--which was EIGHT PAGES of horrible things that could happen to you. Gotta love that. I know it's just about them covering their asses, and most of that stuff on there has never even happened at this doctor's office before, but it's still enough to make you need to step back and think for a minute. If I want, I can have the surgery done as early as October 30. Less than two weeks away. Pretty crazy--so stay tuned for my decision on that!

When Melissa was up, she started talking about planning my bridal shower, which was a little weird. Sort of one of those things that makes it all seem more real, and that it's really not THAT far away. She was going to talk to my cousin and matron of honor, Lindsay, about it. I'm supposedly not supposed to be involved in any of the planning for that--which is part relief, part makes-me-go-insane. I admit, I'm a bit of a control freak, so it's hard for me not to have my hand in at least SOME part of every aspect of the planning. I'm working on getting over it, though. :)

Well, that's all for now... just a few more days here and we'll be under the 8-month mark.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Save-the-Dates are Out!

I mailed our save-the-dates on the way home from work today. I was almost giddy putting all of the stamps on them. They were my first big DIY project, so it was exciting to be done with them and get them out of the house. They had been consuming our dining room area for a few weeks--I had the supplies for them spread out EVERYWHERE. Between cutting the magnet sheets and photo sheets, sticking them together, punching the holes for the ribbon, tying the ribbon, etc. it was time-consuming and tedious. So mailing them out was very satisfying!

Here are a few pictures of the finished product. I've blocked out our last names for security reasons, so the magnet looks a little funny. I've also blocked out the password for our website, and the hotel info. But you get the idea.
We did two different versions of the blue card. One was for out-of-town (OOT) guests, so it contained hotel information. The other was for local guests, so I didn't think they needed that. Instead, we included a little poem I found on the internet. Nothing particularly creative about that, but I wanted to fill the space with SOMETHING!

Here is a close-up of the local card with the save-the-date magnet. I attached the magnet to the card using clear photo corners. I punched holes for the ribbon, threaded the two different colors through together, and then tied them together in a flat ribbon knot.

This is the digital mock-up of our save-the-date magnet that is "internet safe." I took out our last names, but wanted to show how they appeared on the actual magnet, so I replaced them with "Lastname." I also replaced our real password with "password." The photo shown is also the proof photo, so it's not as high quality as the one we used for the real thing.

I'm really happy how they turned out. Hopefully everyone will enjoy getting them in the mail, and they'll serve as a little reminder of our date.

Since I DIY'd the magnets instead of ordering them from a place like www.magnetstreet.com (I absolutely LOVE their stuff, but wasn't willing to pay that much for it!), our save-the-dates were really inexpensive. Here is a list of the supplies I bought and a brief description of how I made them.


- Aqua blue cardstock (8.5" x 11" sheets) - I bought 36 sheets to make 72 save-the-dates. I bought them on sale at Joann Fabrics for 6 for $1, so the paper only cost $6.

- Photo corners (2 boxes) - $4

- Ribbon (3 spools hot pink, 3 spools white) - $0.50 each, so $3 total

- Adhesive magnet sheets, 1 package of 12 sheets (it said 8.5" x 11", but they ended up being something like 8" x 10.5"), purchased from Oriental Trading Company - $16.90

- HP Premium Plus Photo Paper (8.5" x 11") - We bought this on sale at Circuit City, buy one package get one free, so we got a great deal on it. I think it was like $25 total, but we got two packages, one of the 8.5 x 11" sheets that we needed for this, and another of 4x6" that we use on a regular basis. So each package works out to be approx. $12.50, and we only used 12 sheets out of the 25 in the package. So half of that = $6.25

- Stardream Quartz Envelopes (A7 size) - These are the envelopes we're using for our invitations, and with the package sizes, we had to order extras. I specifically designed the save-the-dates to fit into these envelopes so we could use the extras. So I don't really look at the envelopes as costing me anything for the save-the-dates, since I had to buy them anyway. But if you do want to include that cost--$19.44 for the 72 envelopes.

So, the total for all of the supplies is $55.59. Divide that by 72, and you get $0.77 each. Not bad at all. At least not in my mind. They did cost $0.58 each for postage (the magnet makes them a little heavy), too, so keep that in mind, but we handed out as many of them as we could to save us some of that cost.


1) I started by cutting all of my cardstock. I cut each piece to be 5" x 7" so they would fit well into the A7 envelopes.

2) I designed the magnet, and the text for the blue card, in Microsoft Publisher. I designed the magnets to fit 6 on a page. Then, I printed them BORDERLESS on the 8.5" x 11" photo paper using my HP inkjet printer. I printed the blue cards by running them through the inkjet printer as well, on a borderless setting for a 5" x 7" piece of paper.

3) I cut the photo paper using my paper cutter, and went into work on a Saturday to use the heavy-duty paper cutter to cut the magnet sheets into six pieces per page as well. Then, I peeled the backing off of the magnets and stuck each of them to one of the photos I had printed.

4) I attached each of the magnets to the printed blue cards with clear photo corners. Then, I punched two holes (using my 1/8" hole puncher) into the card. Then I cut the ribbon into 12" pieces, and threaded the two colors through the holes together. Then I tied a flat ribbon knot.

5) I used an aqua blue sharpie to address all of the Stardream Quartz envelopes.


Sunday, October 7, 2007

Registering and Ring Shopping

Well, it's Sunday, which usually means we stay home and watch football all day. But today, the Buffalo Bills weren't playing since they are playing Monday night, so we decided to do something with ourselves for once.

We started off by going to brunch at the Lodge at Woodcliff, a really nice place that we never would have gone to except for the fact that Michael's parents gave us a gift certificate for free brunch for two. It's this huge buffet with so much food, so we stuffed ourselves, then got to work.

We drove over to Bed Bath & Beyond and started our registry. That was fun, but completely overwhelming. I was looking forward to it but as soon as the saleslady gave me the scanner, I looked around and just thought, "Oh my god, where do I even start??" We ended up making one lap around the store and spent as much time in each section as we could bear. I wasn't really in the mood to do much comparison shopping, so we didn't look at flatware, dinnerware, sheets, etc. Instead, we generally stuck to the simpler things like kitchen gadgets, towels, and some serving pieces. We spent about an hour there and then left. We still have a lot of time until we're really going to have people using the registry, so we can go back and add stuff when we feel like it.

From there, we went across the street to the jewelry store where Michael bought my engagement ring. We wanted to take a first look at wedding bands to get an idea of what we might like and how much we should budget for the rings. Michael found something he liked pretty quickly, and seems pretty set on it, so that's good. It's a platinum band with like a brushed finish with polished edges. That's probably a pretty crappy description, but oh well. Actually, it looks pretty similar to this one: http://www.bluenile.com/product_details.asp?oid=3205.

For me, I thought I would just get the band with channel-set diamonds that matches my engagement ring (it's made specifically for my ring). So for me, I thought it'd be a pretty simple shopping trip. But there was only one problem--I HATED it on my finger. It was too much "stuff." It looked like diamonds had thrown up on my finger. Which, for a lot of women, I guess isn't a bad thing. In fact, I love how it looks on a lot of my friends. I could probably name at least five people I know who have diamonds in their engagement ring bands and also in their wedding bands, and it looks beautiful. Which is why I thought I'd like it on me, too. But I don't know. I'm thinking I'll have to go back sometime and try it again, maybe try on a few that are different sizes/widths/etc. but I was just not liking it. So instead, I found a really nice totally plain platinum band that I liked. Totally boring, yes, but hey... it looked nice with my engagement ring and I'm a relatively simple girl, so I don't need a whole lot of bling. We didn't buy anything at this point, so we're going to go back. We just wanted to get an idea.

So that was our lovely little Sunday. And we were back home a little after 2:00 p.m. so the day of football-watching was not completely lost. :)

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Latest Knottie Projects

I finished another bride banner for a knottie this weekend. This one was for Suzzette, who's getting married in just a couple of weeks! Her wedding colors are gold, orange and (I believe) some brown, so I did the lettering in orange and did the edges of the banner with a gold ribbon.After that, I started and finished a monogrammed aisle runner for Maggie, who is getting married on November 17. I designed the monogram for her, then painted it on the runner. It turned out well, and I can't wait to ship it out to her on Tuesday!