Grape Soda


This week I’ll be heading to Kentucky to look at venues and hopefully, pick a place and time for our wedding!

Now that we’re getting close to making everything official, I’ve been getting excited about engagement shoots and save the dates. I’m facing a bit of a quandary on the photographer front. As we’re getting married in a different state, it makes it difficult to have the same photographer for the wedding and for an engagement; someone would have to travel. I’m already having a hard enough time trying to pick a wedding photographer (finding the right balance of quality and price), and I can’t imagine finding another one in New Jersey for the engagement pictures. I really wish some of my talented friends lived nearby and could do a photo shoot for us. I am considering contacting the arts department at Rutgers and seeing if I can find a student willing to take some photos for a small fee and the experience.

Anyways, enough stressing about all the possibilities. I’ve seen some really gorgeous e-sessions and I particularly love the themed sessions! This is one of my favorites (I’ve wanted to do an Up themed shoot even before I saw these):

Bonus themed wedding cake!

And to close, our personal Up moment. 🙂

Houston Airport, Summer of '09


One thing I’ve always loved about decorated spaces is the amazing things you can do with lighting.

Yesterday, on the drive home, I thought of a really neat outdoor lighting display that I want to try to implement for my outdoor wedding. Fireflies and Midwestern summer nights go together hand in hand. How neat would it be to having hanging mason jars filled with faux fireflies? My initial thought is that this could easily be accomplished using battery powered mini lights.

I knew I couldn’t have been the first person to think of imitating fireflies in a jar, and a quick google search proved right. Unfortunately, the existing options are not very affordable.

Firefly Magic seems to have a market in “smart” firefly lights for indoor and outdoor displays. They make a ready-made firefly jar that has realistic firefly blinking, but the “fireflies” are larger than I want and the jars are $25 each. They used to sell just the battery powered light strands, which I thought would be perfect…until I found out they were $60 each. Yikes.

I wonder how big the bulk discount is...

I’m still considering accomplishing this as a DIY project. I think it would probably be cheaper to order in bulk some mini light strands and mason jars. I realize that the lights probably won’t blink authentically, but they would still be very pretty. I could even drape them over a leafy branch in the jar.

This might just become another fanciful detail that gets axed (I’m discovering it’s really easy to get wrapped up in hundreds of different wedding details, which I probably can’t afford). If I do decide to proceed, I could always incorporate the jars as part of table centerpieces to cut down on that flower budget!

Some ending inspiration:

As we prepare for yet another winter storm to freezer blast us, I thought I would share my mental model of winter.

Before Christmas, cold weather is charming: the leaves are changing color, fall is in the air! Everyone wants to wear sweaters and drink hot chocolate.  The first snow is always a magical occasion, the gentle falling of snowflakes and everything beautifully covered in a blanket of white. Most importantly, who doesn’t dream of a white Christmas?

That all changes after Christmas and New Years.

My mind always wants to believe that the end of the holiday season also means the end of winter. This probably has a lot to do with spending so many years in Vegas, but it’s true! What is there to look forward to in a winter without the holidays? I find myself almost immediately dreaming of shorts and flip flops, and of long warm summer nights outdoors. I’ll always be a Spring baby that thrives from warm, vitamin D filled rays.

My emotive sandals

I will admit that every fresh snow brings back a little bit of the magic of winter… until it’s time to brush it off my car! 🙂

Linus and Lucy


Christmas is one of my absolute favorite times of the year.

While it tends to make any retail location a zoo and give some people an annual dose of the crazies, I always get ridiculously excited during the holiday season.

This year, the excitement set in even earlier than usual, sometime in early October. Perhaps that’s because this is the first year I got to watch the leaves turn brilliant shades of yellow and read with my boyfriend for the first time. Or because I love that the season revolves around holidays meant for celebrating with friends and family.

What I love most about Christmas though, is the lights. There is nothing more wonderful than waking up at home and drinking coffee by a lit Christmas tree in the early morning, as I would do every December morning in high school. Everything is beautiful during Christmastime; downtown streets and houses  are strung with lights, and churches are filled with poinsettias and candles.

Lights make everything beautiful

It’s also the only time of the year that I openly welcome snow. As a six-year-old, I spent hours on Christmas standing at the window of my mom’s bathroom in our San Antonio house, just because the weatherman said there was a chance of snow. I only moved away when my mom told me that only those people up in Dallas might get snow (which completely warped my understanding of the weather in Dallas for a couple of years incidentally). As a twenty-year-old with little love for the cold or the snow, I still ran outside excitedly minutes before midnight on Christmas, to marvel at the flurries coming down in my Vegas backyard.

Whatever you celebrate, I hope that your Christmas is filled with the joy and wonder that make this season so special.

(Just remember there is such a thing as too many lights)

It’s the countdown, the countdown to


(part 1)

If you couldn’t tell, I’m pretty excited and counting down the hours until the midnight premier tomorrow night.

Who’s not quite so excited? My boyfriend, but he should just be happy that I’m not making him dress up.

Wand at the ready for the Half Blood Prince last summer


For those who did not get the title reference, apparate here as fast as you can!

Today, my bf and I went to an Oktoberfest in Warren, NJ…and of course I forgot that a local festival probably doesn’t take credit cards. Luckily I had enough cash to pay the entrance fee and buy us each a German beer. After immediately exhausting our cash supply, there really wasn’t much of a reason to stick around (especially after the polka band went on a break!)

Next year we know to bring the cash monies.


On a related (but nerdier) note, my bf introduced me to a fantastic holiday on Friday: Spocktoberfest! As soon as he mentioned it, my brain started whirring with ideas for a Spocktoberfest logo and my fingers started itching for photoshop. Since I was at work that wasn’t really a possibility. A quick google search on the phone I was supposed to be testing, however, proved that whatever you’re thinking of can probably already be found on the internet.

I also saw a car while I was stuck in traffic the other day with this collegiate window sticker:

I think if I was still in high school, I’d probably have binders and folders covered with Starfleet Academy and Starfleet insignias.



Last night I had a myriad of stress dreams, but the most memorable player was a giant orange octopus.

At first it was a friendly octopus in a huge cylindrical tank, but nothing stays friendly with anxiety logic for very long. Soon it seemed that no mater where I stood along the edge, the dark mass of the octopus was too close to the surface and even though it couldn’t see me, the tentacles could always find me…

This is not the octopus I was looking for, but it does have the creepiness factor

Needless to say, I’ll need some time before I feel more friendly about octopus again.