Friday, January 29, 2010

Fantastic album deal today!

I haven't posted any music specials in a long time, but when I saw what the Amazon MP3 download of the day was, I had to spread the word!

Adele's album 19 is on sale for only $2.99! This album is SO good! It's worth so much more than $3. If you haven't heard it yet, you owe it to yourself to spend the three bucks. "Make You Feel My Love" is a beautiful song, and could even be used as a wedding related song!

This link will take you to the album right on Amazon:

And you can just listen to samples of the tracks here:

I hope you all have a great weekend!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Who knew I'd ever be excited about postage?

I don't know if anyone else has read all the stories about mailing out their wedding invitations (or save the dates), but I did. People are crazy. (Including me, because I read all that stuff.) I now feel paranoid about having things addressed properly, and hand-cancelling our invitations to prevent the post office from mangling or marring them. Then came the topic of postage. I've seen a lot of the old fashioned "Love" stamps, so I decided to do a search and see what was available now. I was tickled to find some stamps that I really like! They just came out last week. They're totally the kind of stamps you're supposed to collect rather than use, but what the heck. I'm using them. They're the Celebrating Lunar New Year: Year of the Tiger commemorative stamps!

We're planning to try to send out our save the dates on Valentine's Day, so I thought the dark red background with the narciccus flowers would be nice for that. When I read more about the stamps, it turns out that the Chinese New Year begins on February 14th this year. I'm taking it as a sign! (And my dad is making fun of me for it.)

You can't tell from the picture, but the edges are actually a shimmery metallic gold. I love them extra in person. Maybe they'll help me to get my butt in gear to make a decision on which save the date design we should use. Fingers crossed!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The wedding planning continues!

I know, I know... I haven't posted in forever and a half. We basically took a break from wedding planning over the holidays. Holidays are stressful enough with the planning, preparation, cooking and entertaining. We were due for a break from the wedding obsessing. So now I'm back to obsessing, but I'm feeling refreshed and optimistic.

I just wanted to give an update for some of the progress we've made.

*drum roll please*

We have officially hired Matt Shumate as our wedding photographer. He's terrific, and we're really looking forward to working with him!

We think we have selected a caterer. It's actually one of our favorite locally owned little restaurants here, and I don't think we've ever had anything there that we haven't liked. They're also the first place that gave us the answers we'd been dying to hear. They're flexible and happy to work with us on a menu, they're happy to supply a couple of vegan meals if we need them, and they're happy to do a tasting with us once we narrow down the menu! YES! I don't know why it had to be so ridiculously hard to find somewhere that was happy to do that, but we were thrilled to finally hear it. Plus, as a big added bonus, they also supply the serving staff and the dishes! DOUBLE YES! And YAY! That'll save us hundreds of dollars to not have to rent all of those dishes. We have to meet with them again soon, but at this point, we're feeling pretty good about things.

A couple of weeks ago, we had a little adventure when we went looking for a wedding suit for Dylan. Our TV has been flooded with Men's Wearhouse commercials lately, and we kept seeing the commercial about "When all eyes are on her, she's going to be looking at you..." and how they're going to make you look your best for your wedding. We thought that seemed like a good place to start looking. As it turns out, not so much. We were excited when we arrived, and very disheartened and discouraged by the time we left. The woman who helped us was terrible. She directed us to a section of about a dozen suits on a rack and said that was where we could look. The choices were crap. When we told her we were hoping to find a dark brown suit, she just said they didn't have it. When we asked if there were any options, like maybe finding a suit in a different size and then ordering it in Dylan's size, she actually told us we should just go somewhere else! We couldn't believe it. I told her that there was a nice brown suit on their website, and she shrugged. When we saw a dark brown tuxedo, we asked her about that and she said it was a rental. We had to ask if they had something like that that he could try on, just so he could try on SOMETHING remotely like what we were looking for. We were shocked to find out that they don't have rentals for you to try on. They take your measurements, and you get what they give you. You don't get to try it on first! The woman literally told us we should shop elsewhere several times. Dylan was furious by the time we left. He was ready to write a letter to Mr. "I Guarantee It" in the commercials. It's not like we were being jerks, either. We were polite, and excited about buying his wedding suit. Blah! I don't ever want to go there again.

We decided to make the most of it while we were on the other side of town. I really don't have a good sense of the best places to buy a suit for a man, but I was thinking that our next stops should be somewhere like Macy's and Nordstrom. Lo and behold, across the street from the Men's Wearhouse was the Nordstrom Rack store! We figured it was a longshot, but worth a try. JACKPOT! There was a wonderful girl named Nicole in the men's department at the Nordstrom Rack who went out of her way to help us find the perfect suit for Dylan. We found a gorgeous chocolate brown Ben Sherman suit that we both instantly loved. Unfortunately, they only had it one size too small for Dylan! Lovely Nicole made it her personal mission to help us find the suit in his size. I don't know how many other Nordstrom Rack stores she ended up calling, but today she called and announced that she had found the suit! HOORAY! She gave me the number to the San Jose store, and when I reached their men's department I got as far as, "Hi, I'm calling because someone from the Spokane Nord--" and he said, "Yeah! Is this Alyson?" Now that's service when a complete stranger from several states away knows your name. So now we are eagerly awaiting the arrival of Dylan's gorgeous new Ben Sherman wedding suit! And if for some reason the suit isn't right or doesn't fit, we can return it locally, so it's pretty risk-free. We're so excited!

This is a picture from the Nordstrom website of what I'm fairly certain is the same Ben Sherman suit that we bought him (except this one is navy, obviously):

This is a picture I took of the suit we found, so hopefully the suit that's being shipped to us will look like this! My flash made the suit look a little brighter than it really is, it's a nice dark brown.

Dylan's going to look so good!

Oooh, and I also found a pair of wedding shoes at the Nordstrom Rack. They're very simple, but they're a pretty iridescent pearl and they're so soft they feel like slippers. And I got them on clearance for less than $20! I've heard too many horror stories about brides wearing hot shoes that killed their feet, so these will at least be my Plan B shoes, even if I find something fancier for pictures.