Wedding Wednesdays – A Bride’s Story – Part 7

| A Bride's Story, Wedding Wednesdays

I always love to hear the story of how couples met.  In this week’s edition of A Bride’s Story – Amber talks about her first date with Dan.  Although, I knew this story prior to reading this blog, it’s still fun to hear the story again.  If you have a fun story of how you met your husband, fiance or boyfriend, please feel free to share them in the comments below.

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Week 12

Well, my friends, it’s been a slow week in the wedding planning process although we are really getting to the point that I am not going to have as much to share since I am almost done with everything! Laurie and I will be heading down to Savannah the week after next to do a little reconnaissance on florists and bakeries, but I will share all of that information once we are done!        I wasn’t sure that I had anything to share this week, but Laurie had the wonderful suggestion to share a story with you all. Dan and I are pretty private when it comes to the personal details of our relationship, but I think the story of our first date is a good one and worth sharing!

For those of you that have been with me since the beginning you will remember that I told you how we met (working at Six Pence in Fort Mill) and how we bonded over baseball and sarcasm. We had been talking for a few weeks about going to Atlanta to see a Braves vs. Mets game and thanks to my wonderful friend, Jennifer, we were able to go for the cost of gas and snacks! Unbeknownst to me, Dan had already decided that if the trip to Atlanta went well he would ask me out on an official date (because at this point, I still thought we were just buddies and what better way to know if you want to date someone than spending 8 hours in the car with them). The week before that was Mother’s Day weekend and we were working an exceptionally slow day at the bar. After he left, he and I were texting back and forth for a few hours, much to our coworker’s amusement. How I was the only one that had no idea he liked me still baffles me to this day. They told me that I should ask him to meet us for drinks after we closed and I did. Long story short, someone got drunk and I had to drive her home in her car and Dan followed in his to bring me back to my car. We had a good time laughing and joking and spent a few hours on the phone that night getting to know each other better. We decided to have dinner the next night, he would cook for me. I like to eat and as most of you know, he is an amazing chef…so it wasn’t a difficult decision.

I was still living at my parent’s house at the time and due to religious reason, there wasn’t any pork in the house…and I’m big on the pig, so Dan made what we have since referred to as “porkapalooza.” He made me pork chops, mashed potatoes with Swiss and ham, and lentils with bacon bits. Why it took to the actual first kiss for me to fall in love is beyond me! We talked, laughed, played Scene It (he won 2 out of 3, which I’m still bitter about), watched some Law & Order SVU, and had a few drinks. It was such a low key first date, with no pressure because we agreed it was a non-date date. Needless to say, it went unbelievably well and we were both smitten by the end. We went to the game the weekend after and had an amazing time and those 8 hours in the car flew by. To this day, we still travel very well together. We spend most of our time cracking up over ridiculous things and the conversation always ranges from the mundane to thought provoking. I have never met someone who can make me think the way that he can and does.

So, here we are nearly 5 years later and we still spend more time laughing than anything else. We have certainly had our trials and tribulations, but at the end of the day I know that even when we want to murder each other, I would take our worst day a million times over than a day without him. I feel like I get sappier each week, for that I apologize, but I can’t help myself! I keep pinching myself because I can’t believe that I got so lucky. Most people say that their spouse is their best friend, as he/she should be, but how many people actually mean that? I think meaning it is more the exception than the rule. I am one of the lucky ones, I get to say that my husband is my best friend and mean it.

Until next time! Amber

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Wedding Wednesdays – A Bride Story Part 6

| A Bride's Story, Wedding Wednesdays

Hi guys!  It’s hard to believe that January is almost over.  Where did it go?  I wanted to say Thank You to Amber for finishing her blog early this week so I can set it up before I get on a plane for Salt Lake City and for allowing me to show you guys the invitation to her Engagement Party.  As you will soon find out, this past week has been a great week for Amber and I am so happy for my friends…

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Week 11

Oh my, friends, I have so much to share! We are officially at the 10 month mark for the wedding and to say that I am beside myself with anticipation after this weekend would be an understatement! I will start with the news we received just after I wrote the last blog and then we will get to the weekend!

My very best friend and bridesmaid, Lacey, offered to do my hair and makeup for the wedding, which as most of you know is a massive monetary savings! Besides that, Lacey and I have been friends for 10 years and she has worked with my hair on too many occasions to count, so she knows it just as well as I do and knows exactly what I want and what it will do for us! I was worried that it would be too much, doing my hair/makeup on top of other bridesmaid duties, but she assured me that she wants to do this and can handle the pressure! I know that I have said this a million times, but I am really beyond blessed to have the amazing and talented friends that I have! J

That same night, Dan went out for a few drinks with our good friend, Mike, and he agreed (emphatically) to DJ our wedding! He was the DJ that we wanted from the start, so this news is fantastic! He, again, is not only a good friend, but knows us and we know what to expect with his personality. No fear of a mistaken chicken dance fiasco or the party having any lull at all! We are only down to finding a florist (if we don’t opt for wholesale flowers and some DIY work), a pastry chef to make our cake, and renting chairs for the ceremony! Things are zipping right along and the lack of stress I am feeling is such a blessing. We have all heard the horror stories, but I think (at least for me) the key is to get as much done as early as possible and then you spend the rest of your time with maintenance!

Now, on to the glorious story of dress shopping! My MOH, Krista, flew down from NY for the weekend to be a part of the dress shopping experience and the engagement party. After picking her up from the airport we stopped for dinner and had a few drinks and then came home and had a few more and chatted until the wee hours of the night, something I highly recommend you make time for with your MOH and BMs!! We arrived at David’s Bridal at 11am and met my mom and 2 of my bridesmaids, Lynne and Rachel, and the woman that was helping us was not only hysterical, but VERY good at her job. I went in with some style numbers for my dress and the girls (this goes a LONG way with the consultants, ladies) and we were off and running. The second dress I tried on made me feel like a princess, with some minor changes I felt that we had found the one, but didn’t want to rush into any decisions. I tried on another 6 or 7 and while there were some absolutely stunning dresses, I kept going back to that second one. We tried it on again and there were lots of tears and some hysterical bell ringing! In case you don’t know this, when you choose your dress from David’s Bridal, they have you ring a bell to alert all the other brides that the dress has been picked. You can ring the bell as loud and as long as you want to and let’s just say that I won the bell ringing award that day! The girls found their dresses as well and not only do they all look stunning, they are all comfortable, which was important to me! If they’re going to be wearing the dress for 12+ hours, I want them to be comfy too! Another benefit of purchasing from David’s Bridal is that your BMs get a savings off their dresses as well! I can’t share pictures for fear of them getting back to my wonderful fiancé, but I felt beautiful and I felt like a princess and THAT is all you can ask for in a dress!

That night we had our engagement party and I cannot even begin to express how much fun it was and how thankful I am to have such an amazing family and set of friends! Lynne and her hubby, Steve, opened their home to us for the evening and while it was only scheduled from 6-9…we didn’t leave until after midnight! We had so much fun celebrating, laughing, telling stories, and just enjoying the company of our nearest and dearest. Hopefully we also got some great pictures for our Save the Dates, that deadline is quickly approaching!

I have given Laurie permission to post any of our stuff for you all to see, I feel as though each and every reader is on this journey with me and trust me when I say; I feel your excitement and anticipation as we go! I wasn’t sure if I could do this blog from the start, not being a writer…at all, but this has been such an important outlet for my thoughts! Brides, whether you choose to blog or just keep a journal of some sort, write it all down! I have a feeling I am going to want these silly brain spasms someday and am glad that Laurie gave me the outlet to do it.

Dan and I have said over and over how lucky we are to have the people in our life that we do and we cannot wait to begin our life as man and wife. I have days where it doesn’t seem real, days where it feels like it’s been forever, and days when I just want it to be here already! The planning has been a dream, for that I am grateful, but the most important part of this whole process is in 10 months, I get to marry my best friend. He is the sweetest, kindest, most thoughtful guy a girl could ask for and I know that he will be such an amazing husband. Now, I just have to make sure that I can hold up my end and be a great wife to him! Maybe in a few years when I’m yelling at him for his socks being on the floor for the umpteenth time, I will come back and read some of these entries. Remind myself that through all the annoying habits (his and mine) that I would never change a thing. We are imperfectly perfect for one another; that is how we fell in love and that is how we will remain in love.

Until next time, friends!

Amber

Engagement Party Invitation by LaurieLouis.com

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So I mentioned above that I’m headed to Salt Lake City.  I’m going to Alt Summit to learn about blogging and networking.  I can’t wait to come back and tell you guys all about it.  I know that I’m going to come back with lots of new ideas for my website and blog.
Until next week, stay warm and work on your goals!

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Wedding Wednesday’s – A Bride’s Story Part 5

| A Bride's Story, Wedding Wednesdays

Hey guys! In keeping with my New Year’s Goals and getting blogs out on time, it is 12:29 am on Wednesday morning and I am setting up Amber’s blog. See, she had it to me in plenty of time last night but I got side tracked and it hit me that it’s Wednesday and time for the blog…I know that you will enjoy this one, I did!

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Week 10
Good morning, readers!! This past weekend was very exciting and I cannot wait for this weekend! This weekend we are going dress shopping and have our engagement party, but I will tell you ALL about that next week. First things first, I attended my first bridal show this weekend and it was…fabulous.
For any of you brides out there that haven’t yet hit the bridal show part of the planning process there are a few things I must share. 1) It is going to be incredibly overwhelming. 2) You WILL have a sugar high from all the cakes by the end of it. 3) You will never get tired of hearing complete strangers tell you congratulations. 4) Take advantage of stickers with all your info on it (whether the show offers that option or you print them at home) because your hand will get tired if you don’t! 5) Take it all in and walk around slowly so that you don’t miss anything. 6) Set up a game plan at the onset, know where you’re going to start and follow the path, don’t be distracted…you will get to everything! 7) Start at the back and work your way around. Most brides will start at the front and it will be incredibly congested. If you start at the back you can avoid long lines to speak with many vendors. 8) Know which vendors you do need so that you don’t waste yours or anyone else’s time. 9) You will get TONS of free stuff, don’t go this alone. It took my mother, future sister in law, and dear friend and bridesmaid to carry everything!! Lastly and most importantly 10) Have fun! This is all about you, your fiancé (if you make him go, which I have to say I saw more men looking bored out of their skulls than enjoying themselves…know your man!), and your wedding day….don’t feel pressured into anything and if a vendor is making you feel that way, feel free to walk away. This is supposed to be fun and give you some great ideas, not make you feel uncomfortable in any way! I didn’t experience this, but I did see some vendors getting a little pushy. After saying all of that I also want to add that as a rule of thumb, if a vendor bad mouths another vendor (again, didn’t experience this, just a word of caution) RUN! You need vendors that are going to put you and your needs for your day first, not someone who is going to waste your time with unprofessionalism!
As you all know I have been speeding along with the planning process and all I really need is a baker, florist, and DJ. Sadly, the baker and florist are not going to be found in Charlotte for a Savannah wedding, but I did meet a great DJ that if our current plan doesn’t work out, I will definitely be calling him! I did see a lot of great photographers, but Susan is by far better than them and offered a FAR better deal. I also saw a lot of stationary vendors and was not at all surprised to learn that Laurie Louis has far more to offer, on better card stock, with a better overall disposition!! I don’t want to say any names for several reasons, first and foremost being that I have not chosen any of these vendors and will not call out any “second choices” and most importantly, I will not break my own rule of saying anything negative about a specific vendor!
Dan and I are very excited for our Engagement Party on Saturday and having the chance to celebrate with friends and family and I am beside myself with anticipation for wedding dress shopping with my mom, future sister in laws, and bridesmaids this weekend!! It will be very hard to do my blog next week if I do find the one without letting the cat out of the bag! Ha!

Until next time, friends!
Amber

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As Amber mentioned, her Engagement Party is this weekend and I can’t wait to meet her family and friends that I’ve heard so much about.  I haven’t asked her yet but I’m hoping that once the party is over, I’ll be able to share her engagement invitation with you.  I think it came out really well, if I do say so myself…lol.
Until next week, work on your goals for 2015 and stay warm!

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Fun Friday’s – New Year’s Resolutions/Goals for 2015

| 2015 Goals, Fun Fridays

Happy New Year everyone!  I know I’m a week late but better late than never, right…lol.

Well, I told you guys in Wednesday’s blog that I would be writing today’s blog about New Year’s Resolutions.  When it dawned on me today that I hadn’t done my blog yet, my friend reminded me that maybe my number one resolution should be – Do Blogs when I say I’m going too.  Isn’t she funny – NOT!

As some of you may remember, one of the biggest turning points for my business was attending Stationery Academy for the first time in Dallas, Texas.  Well, in December, my good friend Jennifer Faught, president of Stationery Academy, sent out our planning sheets for 2015.  The first task was to list my top three goals for 2015 and 3 things under each goal that needed to be accomplished to complete the goal.  Here are mine:

2015 NEW YEARS GOALS FOR LAURIELOUIS.COMThe next task was to divide my goals into the 12 months.  My problem with that was that I know in order to have a wholesale line for people to purchase for Christmas 2015, I need to have that catalog in people’s hands by May.  That means I need to work on those three items – NOW.  I also know that in order to get ahead of the wedding season for this year, I need to be working with venues and planners – NOW.  So, the 12 month plan doesn’t work for me this year.  It just means – very little sleep.

If you have checked out my website lately, you will notice that item #3 under – Redo My Website has been completed.  My friend, Elle McCann, a web designer in Wilmington, NC, is currently working on the first two items for me.  I have also already found my first vendor spotlight – Samantha Mason – Old South Vintage Rentals.  My hope is to have the vendor spotlight up and running by February 1st and it will include wedding vendors of all types: Planners, Cake Designers, Venues, Florists, Photographers and Videographers.  If you work in one of these fields and would like to be a part of my spotlight, please contact me.

As far as goal#2, I met with Samie Roberts – Something Perfect Charlotte  yesterday to explain exactly what I can offer her brides.  We originally met when she was a guest at my Launch Party in November.  Look for her to be one of my vendor spotlights in the near future. I am also happy to be working with Tara West, event planner with the Pine Island Country Club and Skyline Terrace.  Today, with some of my very good friends, I worked on 450 sets of invitation samples for the venue.  As a result of working with Tara and the Skyline Terrace, I created several new Charlotte skyline invitations and a tailgate invitation that will tie in great with the awesome view of the city from the terrace.

That leaves my third and final goal for 2015.  As you know, I currently have cute notebooks, notepads, disposable coasters, calendars and lucite trays for sale.  As well as expanding those lines, I will be working on a new stationery line for both adults and children and fun new gift and wine tags.  If you have checked out my etsy shop lately, you know that my favorite styles are nautical, beach, rustic, vineyard and low country.  If you have a favorite shop that you think would love to carry my products, please let me know.  I would love to contact them.

Well, those are my three main goals for 2015.  As my readers and my friends, I am asking you to hold me accountable.  Each month, I will be posting a blog that gives you an update on how my goals are going.  As with any goal: any ideas, thoughts and support to get me to completion is appreciated.

Until next time, have a great weekend!
Laurie

 

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Wedding Wednesday – A Bride’s Story Part 4

| A Bride's Story, Wedding Wednesdays

Happy New Year!  You are probably expecting a blog about New Year’s Resolutions today but it’s Wedding Wednesday, so I’ll have to save that blog for Friday.  Instead, it’s time again to hear from our wonderful bride-to-be, Amber.  I can tell you guys, she’s really getting excited about her wedding.

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Week Nine

Hello, my faithful readers!! Sorry for such a long delay, but I am sure you can all understand that with the holidays it’s hard to keep up. We hosted our first Christmas Eve with my family and his, and I must say it went off without a hitch! I know that most people struggle with combining families, but I am beyond blessed with mine. Everyone got along beautifully and we had many laughs and started a few new traditions of our own. I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season of their own and wanted to share a few things that I have realized.

First and foremost – you cannot and will not please everyone. This is something that I have been struggling with, even though you read about and hear it from every bride, I hate letting anyone down, but just remember that if it’s something that you and your fiancé want (or don’t want…I’m talking to you chicken dance) stick to your guns. At the end of the day all that matters is you and the man standing in front of you binding his life to yours.

Second – choose your battles with everyone! Whether it is the bridesmaid that doesn’t like a color, your mother that doesn’t like your flower choice, or your future mother in-law that thinks your wedding cake is too ostentatious…choose your battles! Yes, it is your wedding day, but it’s only one day out of the many you have to share with these people after it!! For the record, I have had none of these battles because my bridesmaids, family, and future family rock. :)

Finally – remember throughout every meltdown (because I don’t care who you are, you will have them) that you love this man and he loves you. There are a ridiculous amount of humans on this planet and whether you believe in soul mates or not, you and he found each other. Finding someone that you love unconditionally, that is perfectly imperfect, and that will tell you you’re beautiful when you feel anything but…that is special. As you yell about the cost of flowers or whether you really have to invite your drunk Aunt Betty, remember that this man loves you even as you throw papers at him. He loves you when you slam the door because you’re just so sick of discussing centerpieces and he loves you even more when you walk up 5 minutes later and hug him tight and thank him for still wanting to marry this crazy version of yourself. Again, not actual arguments…yet.

I had two other super cool things happen since Christmas. The first was my wonderful future mother in-law making me the most generous offer to wear her pearls as my “something old,” I cannot even express how much it meant to me and just one of the many reasons that I can say that I have won the in-law lottery! The other super cool thing that we accomplished was registering at Bed, Bath, and Beyond this week! It was such a smooth process and we were in and out in less than 2 hours, with some clearance Christmas shopping before and after! The scanner is not just for the men, ladies! Make sure you get it for at least a few items because it’s really very fun!!

Next week’s blog will be more intensive because I am going to a bridal show on Sunday with my mom, 2 of my bridesmaids, and the one and only Laurie Louis! I am sure it is going to be a blast and cannot wait to tell you all about it!

Until next time!

Amber

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I can’t wait to see Amber’s blog next week after our trip to the bridal show.  I may even add a few of my thoughts at the end of the blog – from a future vendor perspective.
Until then, with a new year, comes a new look and a promise to be more consistent with my blogs.  Friday, as mentioned, will be about New Year’s Resolutions and what’s new for LaurieLouis.com for 2015.  Monday will begin Mom’s Menu Monday’s again and next Wednesday will be – of course, the next edition of Amber’s Blog – A Bride’s Story.

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Wedding Wednesday – A Bride’s Story – Part 3

| A Bride's Story, Wedding Wednesdays

In Amber’s blog this week, we catch up with how things are going and what she did over the Thanksgiving holiday.  I’m sure you brides know, it’s not all about the planning and I can assure you that Amber is definitely on track.

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Week 4

I can’t believe it’s already been a month since we got engaged!!! I have much to be thankful for this year. I have a wonderful fiancé, a wonderful family of my own, and wonderful in-laws! We spent the holiday in Florida, visiting his family on the west coast and then mine in Central Florida. It was such a blessing to be able to see almost everyone for the holiday! We were able to spend some quality time with his sister, brother in-law, nephews, and parents for a couple of days…highlight for me was the nephews starting to call me “Aunt Amber.” It’s the little things in life. When we headed over to see my family, the timing was perfect and we were able to celebrate a milestone birthday with my uncle. He is my uncle, but it’s a little weird. My aunt and I are less than five years apart and were raised like sisters, that being said, I have never been able to call either of them aunt and uncle in any serious manner! I guess the point of this little rambling was to say that my wonderful fiancé and I are incredibly blessed to have such wonderful families. We all have good days and bad, but I couldn’t have picked better in-laws myself.

On the way home, we stopped in Savannah. It seemed silly not to, since we were driving right by it! We had been to the hotel and the square before, but haven’t been back since we made any decisions. Neither of us were concerned at all, but after seeing the square again and walking around the reception room…we are elated. It is so beautiful and quaint and we cannot wait!! The square is literally across the street from the hotel’s rear entrance, which should make the walk to and then down the aisle far easier than I thought! We, of course, had to stop into Six Pence for a pint while we were there and our only regret was having to leave and come back home. If you haven’t been to Savannah, you must go, it’s such a beautiful city.

We did speak with someone that did flowers on the side while we were in Savannah and he emailed some photos last night of his work, sadly his work is a little ostentatious for our liking, but I guess this is what it’s all about. We will have trial and error on a lot of things over the next few months as we decide exactly what we want. The last big vendors we need to book are DJ, cake, and a florist. I printed out one of Martha Stewart’s wedding checklists and I am cruising right along! My dress is the next big thing on the list and we already have that appointment set for mid-January!

I know this was supposed to tell you a little more about my planning, but I have been chugging right along and there has not been too much to share. You will all know my vendors as I have them and certain information I cannot share in a public forum as it would ruin surprises for parents, bridal party, or even my wonderful fiancé. If he reads this, of course. The only other thing we have decided as a definite is where we are going to register, which we will do when he is done with finals in a few weeks. Other than that, we are just talking through things and figuring out what we want and making decisions as we need to.

That is all I have for now. T-minus 353 days!

Amber

As a reminder – to follow Amber’s path – be sure to follow my Pinterest board: A Bride’s Story/Amber. 

COMING IN JANUARY… A new blog…Let’s Visit..where I will be sitting down with other wedding vendors in the area and asking them ALL the questions that you want to know.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

| What's Up?

I can’t believe that it is almost Thanksgiving!. With so much going on the last few weeks, it seems like the time has flown by.

For those of you looking for this week’s edition of – A Bride’s Story, Amber will be back next week after a short trip to visit her friends and family for Thanksgiving.

For me, I have been working on Christmas card and invitations for lots of wonderful people and shipping out holiday orders as they come in. I have lots of new Christmas items for your holiday decor and gift giving, along with a great selection of fun, Nautical, Low Country, Beach and Vineyard items that will make the perfect hostess or teacher gift. Our new coaster designs are the perfect gift for that under $10 gift exchange and cute desk calendars and notepads will make any desk fun for the new year.

sun-through-sat-calendar
low-country-beach-coasters
CHRISTMAS-DISPOSABLE-COASTERS
 

I am excited to be going someplace warm for a few days this Thanksgiving but I will be back and ready to fill orders on December 1st. As Christmas is just around the corner and printing schedules are getting tight, here is my schedule for the Holidays to insure that orders reach you in time for Christmas:

* All customized printed Christmas Cards and coasters must be purchased by December 1st.
* All non-customized gifts must be purchased by December 10th.
* All customized digital items can be purchased up until the 20th of December.
* All non-customized digital prints can be purchased throughout Christmas and New Years!

To celebrate Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, all gift orders purchased between now and December 1st will receive a free set of Christmas Gift Tags.

Best wishes for a safe and happy Thanksgiving,

Laurie

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Wedding Wednesdays – A Bride’s Story Part 2

| A Bride's Story, Wedding Wednesdays

Hey guys!  For those of you that read last Wednesday’s Blog – A Bride’s Story by Amber, you heard the story of how “he asked, and she said yes.”  Today’s blog takes a look at the beginning of her planning process.   From the girl that is working with her on her invitations, let me just preface her blog by saying – she definitely has her act together!

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Well, this whole wedding thing just got REAL. We cut the deposit checks for the ceremony and reception and signed the contract for the hotel. We already hired the photographer, I actually did that as soon as we settled on a location because I knew long before we got engaged who I wanted to photograph our day. (I keep typing my day, but I need to stop that and remember that it’s our day!)

I guess it’s time to back up a little bit and tell you, dear readers, where we are getting married and why! In March of 2010, I was working in this great little British pub, Six Pence Pub. I walked into work one day and said to a coworker, “Who is the big white guy in the kitchen?!” For any of you that have ever worked in a restaurant, you know that generally speaking there are not often big white guys in the kitchen. He and I hit it off immediately, we bonded over baseball and sarcasm. A good foundation for any lasting relationship. A few months later, we had our first date and as cheesy and RomCom as it sounds, I knew the second he kissed me that I would marry him. The thought alone gave me heart palpitations. I was seriously commitment phobic and the thought that I could marry anyone was TERRIFYING! Okay, so I tell you all that to let you know the original Six Pence Pub is in Savannah, GA and we spent our first anniversary there and love everything about it! The charm, the history, the fact that you can walk around with booze…all wonderful! We chose to get married in Savannah, with the reception held at a hotel Hilton Savannah DeSoto that is a stone’s throw from Six Pence. Without Six Pence, we never would have met and we both felt that bringing it back to where it all began (in a sense) was just perfect!!

I didn’t think through how I was going to write this (I warned you, I’m not a blogger and certainly not a writer!) However, I think now is a perfect time to talk about my photographer. Susan Crutchfield Photography is in a word, AMAZING! I have been honored to call her a friend for years and have had the privilege to watch her talents unravel and hers is a talent that you cannot simply pass by without being blown away! She doesn’t rely on editing to make her photographs amazing, she makes them amazing. If anyone lives in the Atlanta area (not solely, contact her!!) and needs photos done, Susan is a MUST! She is a kind, funny, and beautiful soul that will tell your story in ways you didn’t even know it could be told! So, of course she was my first thought when it came to my…our wedding!

Most of you don’t know this yet, but you will over the next year, I will not give anyone undue praise…when I tell you that someone is a must, I mean it. I am blessed to be surrounded by very talented people and I want to give them their due. This is my pulpit from which to do it for now, but I promise that I will never steer anyone wrong!

Okay, so here we are with 367 days away from the big day and I have already crossed off some of the most important things. I am not a very girly girl though and I haven’t been planning my wedding since I was a kid, not that there’s anything wrong with that, so I never read any bridal magazines or books until now and I missed the most important thing to do when getting engaged. BASK in the glow of marrying the love of your life! Take a beat and don’t jump right into planning, love your intended and enjoy every second because the planning is going to go so quickly and then before you know it it’s the big day and everyone says THAT goes so quickly and then you’re married and sitting on the couch in a few years and think to yourself, “What happened?! I was just engaged a second ago and now I’m married!!” At least that’s how I imagine it’ll happen. Have I mentioned I’m a little melodramatic while daydreaming? No? Well, prepare yourselves for that! With that being said, now that the biggest stuff is taken care of, I have realized that I need to take a little bit and enjoy this wonderful man of mine and this time that we will only have for a year. There will be plenty of great memories and times to come, but this is the only year that we will be engaged and hearing him say, “my fiancée,” just warms my heart and makes me smile.

I have been basking in the engaged glow for the last week and we’ve discussed some of the smaller things, but only one decision has been made, save the dates – more to come later on those – we will continue to plug away a little bit at a time, so that we can relax and enjoy our wedding! Funny how when I started writing this a few days ago I struggled with the my vs. our wedding and now it’s just coming naturally. He and I have been a “we” for years and everything we have is “ours,” but even he said my wedding last night and corrected himself…funny how a wedding turns everything upside down! We always land on our feet though and we will adapt and adjust and face this new chapter hand in hand and at the end of this journey…OUR wedding is going to be AWESOME!!

Till next time,
Amber

Site of my first dance as a "we"

Site of my first dance as a “we”

Where we met!

Where we met!

For those of you that want to keep up with Amber’s wedding – be sure and follow this blog to get the latest information and follow my Pinterest board just for this… http://www.pinterest.com/LaurieLouiscom/a-brides-story-amber/

Travel safe for the holidays!

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Fun Friday’s – Countdown to Christmas

| Fun Fridays

I went to the Apple Store at the mall on Tuesday and it took me 15 minutes to find a parking place.  It was November 11th and the malls were already packed with shoppers and believe it or not, the kids were in line to see Santa.  At this rate, everyone is going to be finished shopping before Black Friday gets here. Sadly, I can tell you that I haven’t started.  I have, however, been busily working on new gifts for you to purchase as you dwindle down your shopping list.

For those of you that know me, you will recognize my style in this year’s line.  All of the pictures below can be found on my etsy shop:  LaurieLouisshop.  We have added a lot of new items over the last week so if you haven’t checked out the shop lately, it’s time to go back.  We have new disposable coasters (don’t forget the customized ones though), cute spiral notebooks and notepads for your desk and purses, as well as fun, graphic design desktop calendars.  This 12-month calendar has one unique style for each month…and sits on a clear easel.

NAUTICAL CHIC COMBO wine combo beach combocalendar

 

Of course what would a Holiday Line be without the Holiday…disposable coasters just in time for those celebrations and assorted gift tags to decorate those packages.

2014-11-07 16.59.38 christmas gift tags

But for those of you shopping for men this Christmas, I did some online investigating as to what the top gifts for 2014 are for men. Of course, most of the lists had laptops, iPads and gaming tablets and the new iPhones. What also seems to be very popular are fitness trackers that you wear like a watch. This year definitely seems to be a techi Christmas for guys.

And for those of you that haven’t thought about your holiday cards yet, it’s only 40 days until Christmas. Check out my etsy shop, I have some great Christmas card designs and if you purchase them between now and December 1st, you can also purchase the option to have them addressed, stamped and mailed for you.

Happy Holidays!
Laurie

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Wedding Wednesday – A Bride’s Story

| Wedding Wednesdays

Hey guys!  I know that it’s been awhile since we’ve talked.  Sorry about that.  If you have been following my instagram you have seen the photos of my Launch Party last Thursday and the new designs that I have on sale for Christmas.  Check back Friday for a blog on my new items.  I also promise to get back to Mom’s Menu Monday’s starting Monday.

Until then, I have a surprise for you….DRUM ROLL PLEASE!!!

A good friend of mine is getting married next November and her friends suggested that she start a blog to archive her journey.  With some fast talking, I talked her into guest blogging for me.  Today will be her first entry and I know you will love it.

*************

Six days ago the man of my dreams asked me to marry him. It was the most amazing moment of my life to date. I knew it was coming, I just didn’t know when or where he would do it. I had concocted all sorts of scenarios in my head about it, but nothing I could have imagined would have lived up to the actual moment. There are no words to describe the joy I felt. About ten minutes after he asked me, I turned to him and asked him if I had even said yes?! I couldn’t remember if I had squeaked out that single word amidst the tears.

We were sitting in my favorite old bookstore in Asheville, NC. We had just had an awful lunch and neither one of us felt so hot, kind of a running joke in our relationship, we always seem to spend part of the happiest moments feeling sick to our stomachs in one way or another. The weekend that we moved in together we both had the most horrific stomach bug you could imagine, thank god we had more than one bathroom in the house! I remember laying on the bathroom floor praying for death and he was on the floor outside the bathroom, all curled up in his comforter and he just reached his hand out to me and said, “I love you.” In that moment, I knew that we could handle pretty much anything life could throw at us. It sounds trivial, but if you have ever felt like that and looked at your partner and felt that love, I know you will understand. I knew that no matter how bad it got, how bad I looked or what horrible noises he heard out of me, he would always love me.

I digress though, we were sitting in this amazing old bookstore and I had my head on his shoulder and I felt so…content. I had this amazing man sitting next to me, the man that I knew that I would one day marry and I could have sat there blissfully for hours. I said to him, “This is my favorite place in Asheville! I love everything about it. I love the smell of the old books and how cramped and cozy it is in here. It’s just perfect!” I had no idea that my uttering that simple statement would lead the best moment of my life. When he asked me, I was in shock. I thought for sure that I had misheard him. Instead of “Do you want to get married” he must have said something else, anything else. I was so taken aback that all I could do was pop my head up and repeat, “What? Are you serious? What? Wait, what?” When he smiled and pulled the ring out of his pocket, I knew it was for real and I burst into tears. The best kind of tears, the kind that make you feel pounds lighter when they subside, the kind of tears that wash away all the bad things that have happened in any and all aspects of life for the last several months. The rejuvenating tears that start the biggest build up for the best DAY of your life. I have had my moment and now I am planning my day.

I am planning my wedding, already in record time according to friends and family, for 374 days from today. It is going to be a wild ride and I may have great ideas, I may have horrible ideas, I will definitely have days when I want to kill someone, and am counting on the days when I regret not eloping. No matter how insane it gets though, in 375 days I will be a wife. I will marry my best friend, my confidante, my biggest cheerleader, and my favorite person.

I have no idea how to blog, but my good friend Laurie Louis has agreed to allow me to guest blog on her website (www.laurielouis.com) and we will learn as we go! I don’t know how much or how little I have to say, but I will try my best to keep it up. Thanks for reading so far. The next entry will have more wedding planning information, but I thought it was unfair to expect you to read something from a complete stranger. So that’s me, Amber, and I hope that along the way we can share some laughs, some tears, and some great ideas. Thank you Laurie, for giving me this opportunity!

Amber

The couch where he proposed!

The couch where he proposed!

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