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Thursday, December 20, 2012

TGIF: a perfect night for Hpnotiq

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Hpnotiq. All opinions are 100% mine.

You must be 21 years or older to drink alcoholic beverages and as always, please remember to drink responsibly.


I am one of those people who enjoys getting dressed up and pre-gaming for a fun girl's night. One of the things I have enjoyed the most is turning on my Pandora and letting it go while I dash between my walk-in closet, master bedroom, and the master bathroom. I am already excited about going out and then the music just makes it that much better! The same goes if I am spending a weekend in a hotel, or hanging out with my friends getting ready together - music and hanging out with my friends gets my adrenaline pumping. The Hpnotiq Primp & Prep website is perfect for this kind of activity.


Do you drink Hpnotiq? I think the first time I came across this product was when I was at Theta Chi's off-campus house, and people were drinking different kinds of mixed drinks - this was when Hpnotiq was pretty new is my understanding. The bottle looked like this:


Sure, it makes me extra-girly to be drinking a fruit-y drink but I don't care. I enjoy lots of different kinds of liquors, but when I am with friends I want something that will mix well and is fun to sip. Besides, when I was at this Theta Chi party the guys seemed to be enjoying the drink, too! We had a fun time that night in 2007 when I first tried Hpnotiq.


Last month I traveled to WV and I visited a boarding school classmate. She wanted to show me her hometown and we had a lot of fun getting ready to go out. Yes, apparently some WV cities have a legitimate downtown! It was such a blast to hang out, catch up on our week and figure out what we were going to wear. This link from the Primp & Prep website definitely helped us in figuring out our shoe situation for the night - sometimes I need visual aids! It was a huge help, and the fashion section of Primp & Prep saved me from a fashion mistake.

We loved using the Pandora station from Primp & Prep - it was perfect to get us pumped up. I think it might be my favorite feature on the website. While my friend worked on my hair (always an adventure) I was the unofficial DJ with this station (hair down music up!). "Firework" by Katy Perry? Why not! Something from Ke$ha? Definitely. Usher will always get me amped up. Later on that night we had a bartender recreate this cocktail for us, and it was delicious! What made it so perfect to test out was that the bar is known for fishbowl drinks and this one looked just like the picture below. It was coconut and fruit and went down smoothly. We had an awesome night. I think you guys are like me - hesitant to take a sponsored post seriously - but Hpnotiq is definitely one of those liquors I can reach for and always enjoy. Check out the Pandora station and the entire Primp & Prep page!


Visit Sponsor's Site

Thursday, December 13, 2012

HIMYM: Robin Sparkles

Okay, so I recently decided that you all are going to need to embrace my occasional weirdness. The weirdness might be my fixation on certain TV shows - like "How I Met Your Mother" - or might be something that demonstrates my strange sense of humor, like Shasta Anne and my love for Narwhals. Just go with it.

So, anyway, "HIMYM" is a great show. It is more than likely ending this season. Which sucks but I won't think about that part. One of my favorite facts is that Robin (who has a lot of random things in common with me) was once a Canadian pop-star called Robin Sparkles (no I have no past life as a pop sensation). Of course, because HIMYM is amazing, they decided over the course of the show to have Robin do two music videos as her "Robin Sparkles" character.

Let's Go to the Mall is the first song that came out, which explains the backstory of Robin Sparkles and was on the season two episode Slap Bet:

Then there was "Sandcastles in the Sand."
Sandcastles in the Sand
Robin Sparkles | Myspace Video
©2012 Sugar Inc. Who else finds these videos hysterical? Is it really just me? As the Tumblr page #whatshouldwecallme posted under "When someone doesn't get my sense of humor:"

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Happy holidays from Cartier

I love this holiday film from Cartier:

Gorgeous jewelry, adorable panther cubs, and the music by Danny Elfman from the Edward Scissorhands soundtrack ("Ice Dance") make for a winning combination of holiday spirit!
I always watch Edward Scissorhands during the holidays, as well as another 'unusual' film (i.e. to be considered in the 'holiday' category), Toys. Here is a full clip of the Danny Elfman music:

Had you seen the Cartier video before? YouTube says it was posted on November 19, but I had not seen it until today!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Favorite item from the Fall 2012 collections

Every couple of seasons, I will spot an item in the magazines, online, at a store, or on the street that draws me in. I will love the color, the texture, how it is cut, everything about it. The sad thing is, quite often this item will be incredibly expensive. This year, that item is the Balmain green lambskin leather jacket. I first spotted it in the Neiman Marcus Fall 2012 book, and then I saw it again on Net-a-Porter and fell apart over how awesome this jacket was...
I know this jacket had lots of knockoffs all over the place, but it is just so gorgeous that I would never settle for anything less. (however, the $7,570 price tag meant I was getting nada). Isn't the detailwork fantastic? Balmain had it in sizes 36-40, and it sold out rather quickly.
Maybe it is because it is the same color as my eyes, maybe it is because I think it will bring out the natural highlights in my chestnut-colored hair, maybe it is because the leather is already butter-soft with no need to break it in... but this jacket is just beautiful!
What do you think of this jacket? Are you a fan of the green trend this season? Check out my Examiner article "Fall 2012 trend: green" as well as one of my favorite bloggers, April, who wrote about emerald green in her post "Bring on the holiday parties" !

All photos taken from this page on Net-a-Porter. © Net-A-Porter

Monday, November 26, 2012

Beautiful fashion finds

I was cleaning out my email box today, and while I only purchased one item today (and it was not even a Christmas gift!), I did find several items that I will happily add to my lust list. They are beautiful fashion finds, things that I would enjoy owning but do not necessarily need to fill out my wardrobe. Enjoy the totally random selections below! Let me know if you have a favorite.

Lela Rose Embroidered Stretch-Sateen Dress, $1,395.00 at Bergdorf Goodman. I love navy, I love cap sleeves, I love Lela Rose.

Diane von Furstenberg Julian geometric-print silk-jersey wrap dress, $365 on Net-A-Porter. A DVF wrap dress is something you cannot screw up on, the price is so low and the pattern reminds me of Tetris. Which is a great reason to buy a dress, right? Seriously though I could wear this at work all the time.

Donna Karan Stretch-knit dress, $895 on Net-A-Porter. I am a Leo, and my personality really does match my sign. In recent years, as I have matured and grown more confidant, I have enjoyed wearing my 'signs colors' - bright firey shades. This red works well for that and I could wear this dress during the holidays, too! Notice that it has almost a drop-waist, which is perfect for long-waisted ladies like me.

Lanvin Snake-stamped toe suede ballet flats, $595 on Net-A-Porter. I just keep needing more work shoes in different colors to keep things interesting and so that I do not wear the same shoes all the time. I would love these for some of my favorite grey pieces in my wardrobe.

Jimmy Choo Anouk patent-leather pumps, $575 on Net-A-Porter. Going back to the whole Leo-colors and need-more-work-shoes arguement. Adore these as they are perfect to dress up or down. I would even wear these to football, baseball, and basketball games.

Gucci Vintage Web monogram canvas duffel bag, $1,095 on Net-A-Porter. While I think the bag explains itself, I just love this shape in a handbag. I keep looking at styles like this one over and over again. I am not sure why but that is how I have been for the past couple of years. I clearly own bags in other colors and styles, but for an investment bag I guess I feel like this style will suit me in the long run.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Wedding Wednesday: Thank You Notes

One of the most traditional aspects of life after a wedding is writing all of your thank you cards. I have been consumed by this assignment since we returned from our honeymoon and I have enjoyed working on them. There is just something about getting an item in the mail, right? Since I write letters regularly anyway, these notes have often been long and 'newsy,' as many are going to people I correspond with on a regular basis.

Wedding Paper Divas was who I used for our Save the Dates as well as our wedding invitations (when their customer service really stepped things up and saved the day!), so we decided to use them for our thank you cards, too. We then had to go about picking a style of thank you card which is difficult as they have over 1000 choices! We knew we wanted to go with something seasonal, but also not with a picture - people have seen us enough to know what we look like, right? We are traditionalists when it comes to thank you notes, save the dates, etc. I am sure with Christmas cards post-wedding we will be open to a photo! Anyway, here are the three we picked out to decide from:

One style we liked was Artistic Foliage in Marigold, which has such a neat dappled effect on the 'ground' of the card.

Style two was Autumn Afternoon in Sienna Brown, which is perfect for late fall as we mail these cards (and it was peak fall when we got married, so a neat cyclical thing going on there).

The last style is Artistic Maple in Autumn Orange, which makes us think of Lexington - maples are the dominant tree in our area, were in our wedding party's flowers, and have such wonderful color!

Here are two posts, one on our Save the Date cards and another on my experience on wedding invitation addressing.

Another tidbit I gleaned from Wedding Paper Divas was a refresher course on thank you card etiquette. Here are some highlights to that page's contents:
Response time: Bridal shower thank you notes should be sent within two weeks of the event. (Oops! Let's pretend that I did that already. Which is a lie. I am still working on mine... how embarrassing...) Brides and grooms should wait no more than 6-8 weeks after the ceremony to send their wedding thank you cards. (Genius idea, seeing as I still have 4-6 weeks left on the wedding gift thank you notes... maybe I should prioritize the bridal shower ones... :) )

The contents of the card: The basic formula to remember is to greet the guest, express gratitude, be specific about the gift, and thank them for attending (or for thinking of you if they could not attend). Tell the giver how you will use the gift. For monetary gifts, on the other hand, thank them for their generosity without mentioning a specific amount. Check and re-check to make sure the person you are thanking for a gift is actually the person who sent it. For example, M and I have a list with each person's gift on and their name and address. That way we do not get confused!
Sometimes it helps to get feedback from the people who do these cards for a living right? I know WPD gave me some additional ideas about the notes that I had not thought of previously.

I cannot wait to finish writing and then share these beautiful thank you cards with our friends and family! I want to mail them all out together. We chose the Autumn Afternoon card since it was ecru in color (like our invites and save the dates), seasonal, and also a nice mix of formal-meets-casual. I do not know what kind of stamp to get... and yes, I am one of those people who likes to have a coordinating stamp! I will probably get a custom one via USPS and Zazzle. I will say that I have been using burgundy and orange pens for the text in the cards. Maybe I should find something with those colors represented in it?

Personal tip, ladies, do not forget to order some extra thank you cards just to have on hand for the future (and maybe change the wording, but still) as well as for errors while writing/addressing!

So... I would love to hear from you! Which one of these three is your favorite? Did you order custom thank you cards after your wedding? Do you ever order items from Wedding Paper Divas?

Disclosure: I was given a free product after being contacted by Wedding Paper Divas/Shutterfly/Tiny Prints. I am under no contractual obligation to receive the sample or talk about this company. I get no additional benefits for talking about the product or company.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Bachelorette Trip to Las Vegas, Part IV

Here is my last post about Vegas - sorry guys, but when you spend three nights and four days there I felt like it deserved multiple posts. I will be honest, I just hate really long blog posts, so even if I created two posts, I knew it would be too long! So there you go. :)

This shopping destination ("shopping center is just not glamorous enough!) is called The Crystals at CityCenter and it is relatively new. It is probably one of the finest shopping centers I have ever been to. Just a beautiful place. I did not want to be that creepy girl taking pics of all of the stores and their security, but feel free to check it out!

Some of the stores are: D&G, Tiffany & Co., Lanvin, Tom Ford, Louis Vuitton, Prada, Dior, Hermes, Zegna, Marni, Bvlgari, Roberto Cavalli, Versace, Miu Miu, Fendi, Jimmy Choo, Pucci, YSL, Stella McCartney, Van Cleef & Arpels, Cartier, Harry Winston, Donna Karan, Balenciaga, Kiki de Montparnasse... all in one space. Not a "village" not on a street, all in one enclosed space. Highly convenient if you are a high roller looking to spend a bit of money before leaving town!

Here is the gorgeous chandelier that has made the interior of The Cosmopolitan casino famous. Made of over 7 million facetted crystals, almost covering three floors, 75 feet in diameter. I enjoyed a drink 'within' the chandelier with a friend who was also in town during the bachelorette party - there are at least three bars within this chandelier!

This gorgeous dragon and cherry blossom tree are made entirely of chocolate, at the Jean-Phillippe Patisserie at Aria Las Vegas. Originally constructed for the Chinese New Year, they have had it in this refrigerated case since then - it also moves!

Here is a video someone took of this dragon - really awesome, right?:

After going to a club and gambling during the last night in town, I enjoyed a nice leisurely walk back to Bellagio. There is an escalator right next to The Cosmopolitan property, which takes you up and then across the Bellagio property into the lobby area. These last two photos of the strip from the escalator - gorgeous right?

I hope to do a few wedding posts when I am all caught up! ...hopefully soonish?!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Bachelorette Trip to Las Vegas, Part III

The pics included were from our 2nd day/night in Vegas, unless someone else was named as photo credit!

Photo by Raymond Ming

Have you ever stayed at the beautiful Bellagio in Las Vegas? Maybe you have seen it in the movies - Oceans Eleven, Rush Hour 2, What Happens in Vegas, The Hangover, etc. It is just such a beautiful place - and when it was built and opened in 1998 it was the most expensive hotel ever built (over $1.6 billion). Note, even though the Burj Al Arab is a more exclusive hotel, it did not cost as much to build! I thought that was interesting since people always go on and on about the Burj.

Photo by Raymond Ming

The pools at The Bellagio are so beautiful! It is not the party like it is at Monte Carlo or Mandalay Bay - it is much more your luxe, Palm Springs/Palm Beach atmosphere... much more my cup of tea! I love to party... but not poolside. Think of all the people in those big party pools the celebs host. The water quality in particular. Ew. Give me a beautiful cabana anytime.

Photo by Raymond Ming

The famous Dale Chihuly ceiling art installation, 'Fiori di Como,' next to the check-in and check-out desk at The Bellagio. There are always one or two massive 6' tall floral arrangements underneath, and the lobby reminds you that you are in Vegas - kind-of like Texas - everything is bigger! This photo faces the revolving door entrance, which is comically large to me (I think you could fit 5+ my-size people in each partition quite easily). Behind you (if you were taking this photo), would be a piano lounge immediately at your 7/8 o'clock, and at your 6 o'clock is the Bellagio Conservatory and the Cafe. I am a big fan of Dale Chihuly - since 1998/99 really - even though I am not a major modern art fan. I guess I put glass in it's own category!

Lets pretend that my eyes are open in this picture. I hate that I ruined it in this way. I am SO bad about it. The girls will tell you even on my wedding day I was closing my eyes at the WORST possible time during pre-wedding pictures. Durr. So annoying! A really wonderful (and intimidatingly big) bodyguard took this photo for us as we headed to The Bank nightclub for the night. We had pregamed ahead of time and I def was feeling it!! Oh, and we were the most covered up girls there... yes, including me. These girls were barely covered up. It was both interesting and horrifying. I know at one point a bartender gave me a shot and I then started dancing like I was on the Jersey Shore (yikes) and started rapping along to a song with Izzy (awesome).

Inside The Bank nightclub. Let me just say, we had an hysterically entertaining night, with ALMEC getting hit on by a Hasidic Jew (yes, in a nightclub) and Izzy and I danced like fools together... while occasionally running away from crazy people. It was a blast. I loved the outfits (albeit skimpy) that the dancers were wearing, apparently not long after we left - Labor Day weekend maybe? - they now dance in black bikinis - like Lady Gaga in Telephone - from what my friends have told me. Not as flattering, IMHO! The lighting in the club is crazy, and we had a "not famous" famous DJ spinning the night we went and he transitioned pretty horribly. But the atmosphere was so much fun to be in. ALMEC actually got so tired of her creeper that she pretended to be hammered and we hid from him in a banquette... yes, that actually happened.

I love my ladies. I have some of the best friends a girl could ask for, honestly. And yes, my boobs are hanging out. But I swear I was still more covered up compared to other girls that night. Some lady in Hong Kong made this silk dress for me about five years ago. I love it and it makes an appearance every once in a while!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Bachelorette Trip to Las Vegas, Part II (NSFW)

**NSFW post**

Day two of the Bachelorette Trip in Vegas was probably our best day. We slept for a while until we were all caught up on sleep, excluding my MOH who is used to the time difference. What I can remember fondly of that day, was our awesome view from our room. Here is the view during the day and than at night.

The room's view meant we faced Caesar's Palace VIP entrance and pools, as well as the mountain/ridgeline. We were not facing the Bellagio fountains, which means more guests and louder hall (and outside) traffic. So, a quieter room as we sobered up/napped/slept, pretty much a winner! We were super happy with the accomodations.

We had a gorgeous room with a massive marble bathroom. I did not take pictures of the bathroom or bedroom but there was plenty of space for at least six girlfriends in the room. The bathroom had both a huge soaking tub and walk in shower, and I think my only issue is due to the shower not being treated glass we were forced to all used the tub/toilet/shower at separate times. One of my favorite things about the Four Seasons hotels is that the W.C., shower (treated glass), and tub are in their own space so you can have people use toilet and shower at the same time without it being awkward. So that was kind-of restrictive... you can see what I mean below, roomy, but not as people-friendly as it could be:


Anyway! I took a nice relaxing tub soak when I got up since Izzy was not awake yet and I didn't want to disturb her. We planned on getting room service once everyone was up. Well, it was relaxing for a short period of time until we, as a group, all heard (yes, even me in the bathroom) a pair of voices next door. We quickly surmised that this had to have been an escort or sexual encounter with some BDSM undertones as there was a lot of smacking noises as well as lots of crying out words in Chinese. There may or may not have been the occasional "Oh God" but we just sat around and laughed and laughed while being curious/immature. Of course it was shocking but we knew we were in Vegas so we could not really complain... but at least we had a good story to share. (and yes, I know, I cannot believe I went there on this blog, oh well! ha!!)

Eventually my jet lag finally subsided, so we decided to go outside. Before heading off-property, we got to enjoy some of the famous Bellagio fountain show, and took it all in:

[IPP and ALMEC watching the fountain show...]

[Here is a great photo of the show, facing the Bellagio, by Alvaro Cardona]

We knew we needed to buy some liquor for the room, so we went across the street to the Planet Hollywood Casino.
There is a mall next to the casino and it is pretty much a generic mall, not a lot of high roller stores like City Center. But the liquor store was there so we got a handle of vodka for the room. Be smart like us and keep your champagne bucket from room service breakfast so you can cool your liquor in your room and then use the ice bucket for mixing drinks. Yay!

We then decided to go all the way to the Mandalay Bay end of the Strip and walk our way back. The Mandalay Bay is where the Four Season's tower is located in Vegas, too!

[You can sneak a peek at IPP here! We enjoyed checking out the flora and water throughout the Mandalay Bay property.]

I had no idea how long the walk to Mandalay Bay was on foot. We did not take the trams as I wanted to take everything in and it was such a gorgeous day. Even though it was maybe lunchtime on Friday the sidewalk was packed. I cannot imagine having to drive in from somewhere during daylight hours.

[ALMEC and I! She was very popular with guys thanks to her attention-grabbing outfit...]

It seemed like it was a nightmare if you were staying anywhere below Bellagio/Caesar's Palace (which mercifully has a major road bisecting between the two properties).

We wanted to check out all of the casinos to really familiarize with their 'brand' which I think was smart. My parents love The Venetian but I'd rather be on the strip, in the middle like at Bellagio and Aria. Just seems more convenient! Maybe it is an age thing? So we went in Luxor, Excalibur, New York New York, Monte Carlo, Aria, Cosmopolitan, and then back to the Bellagio... where on the side escalator entrance ALMEC made a friend:

At this point I was feeling PRETTY GOOD. My Maids decided that it would be advantageous to buy me a jello shot or cocktail at every counter that offered them as we walked back to Bellagio. Yup, good times. Little did I know how crazy the night would be!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Bachelorette trip to Las Vegas, Part I

Well the weekend before Labor Day was great as it was the weekend of my Bachelorette Party trip to Las Vegas. Thursday AM I took off from work and I ended up upgrading to Main Cabin Select on Virgin America as the plane was busy but not packed. I did not have anyone next to me which was wonderful! It was so nice to watch live TV, a couple movies, and have a breakfast with my legs stretched out. Yes, I am 5'9" and was wearing heels but was able to sit on the plane with my knees just barely bent. I enjoyed it on the way to LAX so much that I did it on my return to IAD. Definitely worth the extra $100+ for the upgrade at the airport. Also, neither seat either way was an aisle seat, so I really did luck out with window seats to and from!

Here is what the area for Main Cabin Select looks like, you look through into First Class, which is fine as I was able to use "their" bathroom which is much closer than the one at the back of the plane, which Coach/Main Cabin fliers use exclusively:

[property Virgin America]

All of the seats on Virgin are leather. Yes, leather! So comfortable, I probably would have fallen asleep if I had worn sweats or leggings... which I did not do as I 'dress well' on my flights! I honestly do not like First Class on these domestic flights as you are in such a small section and too far up in the plane to my liking. Main Cabin Select puts you back a little bit closer to the wing so you don't feel as many shifts on the plane... So I had a Jack and Coke (yes, it was 9am but it was good for my nerves as I rarely cross the country solo)... okay okay it was two of them, a cheese plate, several movies and shows for free in this upgraded class. I was definitely a happy camper... I am sure the booze helped.

[from Google Images]

Landed in LAX with no issue but found out MOH had to assist her boss with a conference call in the PM (hello, of course she was working that day). I think in the future I will just fly straight into Vegas so I don't lose a day (half day on Thurs and half day on Sun) of travel, but she and I had fun and made the most of it. Seeing as we got stuck in traffic she got to show me a LOT of LA as well as driving me to my first In-N-Out (in the last 'town' (Barstow) before we drove through the Mojave). She lives by Melrose so I got to have fun seeing what that includes and I was on a mission for fish tacos. So I had fish tacos and they were awesome. Eventually, MOH was able to come home to her adorable apartment and she drove. It was about two hours longer than it should have been (horrid accident on the 10), but heyyyy I got to SEE more of the West Coast. So that was nice. Especially Vegas at night when you cross into the state (yes, the lights - particularly the Luxor beam (42.3 billion candlepower) - are apparent as you cross the border). I never thought about that before it actually happened and it was certainly fun and a different way to see things... building up before you get there in contrast to the airport which has you land in the thick of it.


Eventually MOH and I arrived at the Bellagio where I tried to not gape at some of the most offensively-dressed people I had ever seen - I had to go through the culture shock and it wore off quickly once I put myself back into an urban frame of mind. Later on the group gathered and we decided to eat dinner. I think it was 3am EST when MOH took this shot of Izzy and I, and I had not slept in over 36 hours was our estimation... (I can never sleep before a trip!):

We ate at the Café Bellagio since it was so late at night. It is nice looking for a 24 hour restaurant but the service was spotty at best. We definitely felt neglected which was dumb as it was 'only' midnight and the place was steady (not overwhelmingly busy by any means). We did not order anything complicated but it was hard to not be frustrated when we wanted to leave the table and no one was collecting our check! I think when I go back to Bellagio I will try to eat on a more normal schedule and go with better dining options, more expensive but worth it. I like to eat at special places when I travel but we all wanted a little nosh before heading up to sleep. Regardless of the problems there, it was comfy decor and I started to doze during dinner! Whoops... that was when the girls knew I needed to head back to the room.

The below photos are all from © ALMEC's Instagram... We loved wandering in the Bellagio Conservatory. The Conservatory changes seasonally and we apparently were lucky enough to be there for the last two weeks of the summer decor. I got an email from them not long after we had returned that they were installing the new autumn display. At night it is lit up and quiet which was very nice and in stark contrast to the packed atmosphere during the day...

The way they used mums to construct the bees was probably my favorite feature! The scent floated into the Café and it was wonderful. It did take all of my willpower to not wander through the flowers (pass out in the flowerbeds) and/or ride the carousel. So, not long after this meal we went back to our massive room to sleep. I'll write more soon!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Wedding Wednesday: a Day Late!

Happy Thursday to all, it has been a while since I last posted but so much wedding-related stuff has been going on, it has been incredibly hard to not be overwhelmed. I was doing really well out the gate, but now so many things snowball when you are working and planning at the same time! Decisions, decisions...
Firstly, it is hard to not feel anxious when I have always been a very reliable commenter, and now I warily eyeball a 1000+ Google Reader status. I think the lowest it has been in a month is at 700+ but we shall see what I can accomplish in the next few days. I just hate not giving back to all of you who I read, Instagram, Tweet with when you know I am pretty devoted to doing so. My normal 2 hours a day to do my blog comments are now taken up with caterer calls, emails with Mom, or returning calls or questions from other vendors related to the wedding.

We have gotten in many of our wedding invitation responses, but even though they were due on Monday we still have about 52 we need to hear from - really 30 as about 20 were people who had address changes they never told me about or other random items like that. Those are fine. But I did not anticipate so many people just not responding. I feel like it is rude and inconveniences everyone involved. Not even an email or phone call update on their plans. I would be embarassed to be that person, but maybe I am the only one?
We ordered beautiful and autumnal Bridesmaid Luncheon invitations from FineStationary and they came in perfectly, except we were disappointed that their "standard" return address font on the back flap was hysterically small, like a 1" flap and the font was a standard script in maybe 10 point? Could not figure that one out! Also, the name is hysterically tacky-sounding, "Roadside Bouquet," and in Virginia we have people who grow fields of wildflowers... not just on a roadside!

We also ordered our Rehearsal Dinner invitations... and Wedding Paper Divas sent me to hell and back with that one. I have used their website many, many times and this problem wasn't small at all. The order was delayed and then they sent us the correct custom return envelopes with someone else's invitations in the box - our order confirmation sheet and packing slip info was correct - so why didn't that person check the names on the invite?! Timing is everything and while they gave me a small refund they were not as accomodating or prompt in correcting their error as I would expect. So I do not think I could use them ever again. Disappointing as I love their stuff, but a lot of things wrong in their operations and how they handle quality control.

Got my wedding hair trial done - so excited and happy with how it turned out! Hard to photograph but I think you get the idea. It looks perfect with the veil.

We picked up our wedding bands last weekend and are thrilled. I plan on wearing my band on my left hand and my engagement ring on my right hand due to the larger stone on my engagement ring. I love how elegant but special the custom band is... I did have a hard time taking that pretty thing off. It is a 5 stone band - which is what my Grandmama has - but mine is two diamonds and three sapphires. M wanted to integrate the stone again in the band and I think it looks fab. He has a simple comfort fit band with milgrain edge. Robert Jones at Hamric & Sheridan does wonderful work if you need someone for jewelry in the Shenandoah Valley.

I had a fun Bachelorette trip to Vegas - I may leave that for another blog post...

How are you all? Anything I need to catch up on or may have missed? XO