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12.09.2009

Ornamental Inspiration: A Modern Twist


Isn't it something how an ordinary object, when viewed in a different context, can provide an unexpected spark of wedding genius? Take this Christmas ornament from the MoMA collection, for example. Artist Eva Zeisel's punch-hued, mouth-blown glass bell provides the perfect inspiration for these modern wedding details.


I really love the light and playful mood of this collection. It's my first attempt ever at assembling a board! I guess it just goes to show that you never know where you'll find that little something to kick-start your creativity... so keep your eyes peeled and mind open!

Happy Holidays, hive! May they be merry and bright!

10.26.2009

Dusting things off...


Yikes. I can't believe it's been over two months since my last post on this poor little neglected blog of mine! I promise, I haven't abandoned the place... I've just been a little busy. Thanks so much for checking in on me, though, and letting me know that I've been missed. You're all too sweet!

You might notice that the place has been freshened up a bit. (Good riddance, drab gray background!) After all this time, I've finally figured out how to brighten things up. It's much nicer, don't you think?

Anyway, I'll get back to posting with a lot more regularity real soon... including those recaps that no one probably cares about anymore. I'll also let you in on the big news that's kept us busy for the last several weeks. (I'm a tease, I know!)

So with all of that out of the way, how have you been?

8.27.2009

A Bee's Life: Yorkie's Tale


Because we each have a story to share, here’s mine.

~*~*~*~


Sniffin' out information

Growing up, I guess you could say that I was a different kind of child. When others my age were out playing and doing normal kid stuff, I could usually be found in my room, Webster's Collegiate Dictionary in hand, looking things up. If it wasn't the dictionary, it was the encyclopedia. If not that, then the huge collection of old GEO magazines that my dad had picked up for $5 at a yard sale. Bottom line, I was an inquisitive little thing.


I still have that red, cloth-covered dictionary. These days, though, I'm much more likely to Google something than reach for the bookshelf. So naturally, when Mr. Y and I got engaged in July 2008, one of the first things that I did was hop on the computer and start Googling like a mad woman. I seriously hadn’t the first idea of where to begin. Colors? Dress style? Favors? Unlike my younger sister, who had been picking and choosing details for her dream wedding since she was like, oh, five… I hadn’t a clue what I wanted. Nope, I was the kid slouched over the desk with her nose buried deep in a dusty old book.


Itching for the 'bee

So, in doing what I knew best, I discovered the wonderful (if not overwhelming!) world of wedding blogs. I had a vague idea that we would have a family tree theme, as a nod to our shared passion for genealogy. Silhouettes came to mind as a detail, so I started searching. Before long, I found the instructions on Brooklyn Bride for the digital silhouettes that would become the official logo of our little shindig. Searches on other DIY projects led me to Once Wed, Style Me Pretty and eventually, Weddingbee.


Anyway, my addiction to Weddingbee didn't begin initially with the blog, but on the boards. In the hive, I found a welcoming community of friendly women in various stages ranging from “pre-Will You?” to “post-I Do!” Not having any other real-life friends planning weddings at the time, the boards satisfied my need for fellowship with other brides-to-be who knew exactly what I was going through. So, I lived there as “craftypants”, commenting daily on others’ threads and bouncing ideas of my own off the friends that I’d made in the hive. I was on there A LOT.


Trying my paw at blogging

Unlike many of my fellow bees, I did not begin blogging with the intention of applying to Weddingbee. My blog, which I started in April 2009, was to serve a more selfish purpose: to keep this procrastinator from putting off important wedding-related tasks and projects during the final stretch of our planning. I figured that if I posted about it online, for anyone and everyone to see, I’d be much more likely to carry out my plans and stay on target. In the process, I figured that in my own little way, I could pay forward some of the help and inspiration that I’d received from my favorite bloggers.


Having a little faith

I never really considered even applying to become a WB blogger until an aspiring bee (the future Mrs. Bunny) encouraged me to apply. Me? Do you really think? Really? But it's so late already! I was stunned by her confidence in me, and figured that I had nothing to lose. So I applied.


I found it hard to believe that readers would enjoy posts about a wedding that was nearly completely planned. You see, by the time that I got the idea to apply, all but a couple of our main details had already been decided upon. My dress had long been purchased, our venue and photographer were contracted months in advance, and our precious cake (the final version of it) had already been set. Rather than engaging the hive by asking for opinions and advice, I would be conducting more of a bridal show-and-tell. I had my doubts.


Bunny was right all along! I was accepted as a bee and began my life as Yorkie. If it wasn't for her suggestion, though, I never would have applied. At a time when she herself was longing to become a blogger, she encouraged me to give it a shot, too. Thanks, Bun!


Hot diggity dog!

The decision to become Yorkie was an easy one for me. I chose it in honor of my real-life little pint-sized pooch, Bella. The little dance I did when I first read the acceptance e-mail sure reminded me of her. I had to laugh, though. Mr. Y's first impression of my icon was that it looked a bit like an Ewok. (Boys and their Star Wars! Ha!)


Dog-tired

As wonderful and rewarding as my experience as a bee has been, I found that at times, attaining beedom so late in the planning process was a bit of a challenge for me. Before blogging, I'd already joked that I felt as though I had two full-time jobs: my day job and planning the wedding. Finding in the additional time to write my 3-4 posts each week was not always easy. Especially considering that it takes this puppy at least an hour and a half to crank out just one. So it wasn't uncommon for me to be up as late as 3:00am during the week. The silver lining, though, is that my time-management skills strengthened and the procrastination problem lessened a bit!


Echoing what other bees have said, though, the encouragement and support from readers definitely made it worth it!


So you wanna be a bee...
You've already gotten some fantastic advice from my fellow bees about finding your voice and keeping your integrity (Be yourself!). I thought it might be helpful to share with you what worked for me when applying.

When I decided to apply, I had a little more than five weeks left until our wedding. I figured if there was any hope for me as a short-term bee, my application needed to be eye-catching. Not really knowing how the review process worked, my goal was to get my blog seen sooner than later. So rather than simply answering the application questions in a ho-hum numbered list, I decided to up the "wow" factor by formatting my application in a unique way. It kind of looked like a résumé.


With the help of Adobe PageMaker, I created a two-page layout. I separated each question with a colorful frame and labeled it in a fancy font. I also threw in a few photos here and there for a personal touch and added interest.

You know something, it must have worked. I received my acceptance e-mail from Pengy later the very same day!

As I mentioned earlier, everyone has a story to share... even a short-term bee like me. Thank you so much, hive, for embracing and encouraging me throughout my planning process, but especially during the final stretch when I needed it most! xoxo

8.19.2009

Good Things Come to Those Who Wait

Check out what Mr. Yorkie brought home the other day!


"What could it possibly be?" It only took me all of a split second to answer my own question. (After all, I'd been waiting an agonizing eight weeks since our wedding for this little bundle to arrive.)



We have photos, folks! Tons of beautiful, professional photos of our special day on four DVDs. (If only Marina at Ambiance Studio had any idea of the crazy blog stalking that had been going on at Casa Yorkie over the past two months!) So, you know what this means. Recaps are on the way!



Have you been the recipient of a lesson in patience recently? What are some things you've had a hard time waiting for?

8.14.2009

It's Back! Michaels Summer Madness Sale

That's right, hive! Michaels will be having another Summer Madness Sale this Sunday, from 4:00 - 8:00 PM. And guess what. It's better than before! With their e-mail coupon (also available in stores), you'll save 25% off your ENTIRE purchase*, including sale items! If you aren't registered with Michaels, you can do so here.

So if you've been putting off stocking up on supplies for those DIY projects, here's your chance to get what you need while scoring major savings!


* There are some restrictions, so be sure to read the fine print. (You won't be able to apply the discount toward Yudu, Cricut or Slice products. Sorry!)

8.13.2009

Reminder: South Florida Bee Meet-Up!

Don't forget, South Florida hive members! We'll be getting together this Saturday afternoon at the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood for great food, cold margaritas and lively conversation. I hope to see you there!

Saturday, August 15th
3:00 pm
5760 Seminole Way
Hollywood, FL 33314



Please comment below if you're planning to join in on the fun!

8.06.2009

Flying Fur and Other Fears


Hive, it's high time that I 'fess up about something. Mr. Yorkie and I have been married for close to two months now. While I've been making decent progress (for a procrastinator) with migrating my belongings from Mama Y's home to Mr. Y's our place, there's an important little something -- er, someone -- that I've not yet brought with me. I'm embarrassed to say that Bella, my six-year-old Yorkie, is still living at my mom's house.


Bella, my 10 lb. little monster

There are two large, rather furry reasons for my hesitation to move her in. Their names are Tess and Berkeley, and they're the kitties that Mr. Y adopted from animal services almost two years ago. In addition to the five pound or so advantage that each of them has over Bella, they're both physically bigger and stronger than she is, and they sport intimidating pairs of claws.

Bella is in no way a frail little pooch. In fact, she's rather feisty, extremely brave, and (I'm convinced) believes she's as big as a Boxer. Still, I can't help but worry about how she'd fare on Tess and Berks' turf. They aren't mean cats. They're actually pretty friendly (to humans). The thing is they've never been around a dog before. So, yeah.


Even as a kitten, Berkeley's claws could do some damage

While most newlyweds get the "When are you having babies?" question, our friends and relatives have been asking us "So, how is Bella getting along with the cats?" All I can do is flash a nervous smile and admit that they've yet to meet. I usually throw in an excuse like, "I was waiting until after the house was tented" (that happened while we were on the honeymoon) or "I'd like to do it when I can be home with them" (then, um yeah, just about any weekend). The truth is I'm scared.

I know that in the three years of our relationship, there have been plenty of opportunities for me to introduce the little critters. It's actually something that I'd always intended to do, but just never got around to.


Tess is currently the "boss" of the house

So now, here I am, missing Bella like crazy and visiting her a couple of times a week. It breaks my heart to see how excited she gets when she hears me pull into Mama Yorkie's driveway... and then again when she scurries after me as I head toward the door to leave. I know that I need to just buckle down and do something about it.

I've read a few articles on how to introduce a new pet to established ones, like only allowing them to sniff each other out from under a closed door for the first few days. I'm just wondering what might work best for them, considering that they're a little older and set in their ways. Of course I anticipate hissing, arched backs and even some barking. I just pray that's the worst of it.

Do you have experiences with integrating the furry members of your family? What strategies would you suggest? I'd like to move Bella in before too much more time passes. Do you think it's better to do gradually, like in a series of 10-minute visits? Or is this something to just get over with, like ripping off a band-aid?

Introducing Gilt Fuse!


You've heard bees rave about
Gilt Groupe and its unbelievable sample sales for some time now. It's where I scored my precious pink Kate Spade peeptoes and where Mrs. Hot Cocoa found her incredible Badgley Mischka rehearsal dinner dress. Scanning the site's sales is part of my daily routine!



Well, you can imagine my delight when the announcement of Gilt Fuse arrived in my e-mail recently! The new site promises women a wider range of styles from designers that we know and love at much lower prices. That's sweet music to this budget-conscious girl's ears!

Gilt Fuse will be opening in limited release beginning at 12:00pm EST next Wednesday, August 12th. The catch is, only current Gilt Groupe members will be able to access it before its wider release in the fall. So, if you're a current member, mark your calendar! If you're not yet a member, what have you been waiting for?! Gilt Groupe membership is by invitation only. You are welcome to join in on the savings by using my personal invitation!

8.03.2009

Treats for Our (Weary) Travelers


Hi there... um, it's me again. It's been a bit longer between posts than I expected. Life is just now starting to settle into a comfortable routine, so I expect to begin posting again with more frequency. (I promise!) :o\

In case you could use a little reminder, I last left off sharing about the days leading up to the wedding and the half-finished wreaths that needed wrapping up. Well, another one of our last-minute list items included assembling and delivering our out-of-town bags. (This was one detail that I'd actually considered nixing as the clock counted down.)



Knowing the lengths that many of our guests went through to get to Miami, I'm sure glad that we took the time to put the welcome bags together. You see, wicked weather in the Dallas area two days before the wedding, caused the cancellation of more than 400 flights. So many of our West Coast guests were affected, including poor FIL Yorkie who spent the night camped out on the floor in LAX. Mr. Y's cousins from northern California made it into town a mere two hours before the ceremony! Thank goodness, though, everyone eventually got here safely.

As anxious as a trip to Wal-Mart tends makes me, I managed to find just about every ingredient for our 20 OOT bags at the gigantic superstore. (There's just something about huge places crammed with so much stuff and so many people in it that makes me a bit uneasy.) So, the weekend before the wedding, with Mama Yorkie by my side, I sucked it up and piled a shopping cart full of wedding week necessities.

Our bags included:

- 2 bottles of water
- Pepperidge Farm Goldfish
- Jumbo chocolate-covered pretzels
- Miami postcard
- Florida road map
- Brochures with discounted admission to local attractions
- Welcome note (not pictured)



Goldfish for the kiddies!


The maps and brochures were collected at a turnpike rest station.


Every once in a while, an unbelievable deal comes along that just makes me super excited for finding it. You know, like snatching up a fantastic pair of shoes at a next to nothing price. Well, Wal-Mart afforded me one of those so-excited-I-could-scream moments. Those bags of chocolate-covered pretzels tied in colored raffia... um yeah, $1.50 each!!! Score! Needless to say, I immediately squirreled away 20 bags. (Thinking about it still puts a smile on my face. Sad, I know!) :o)


All of the goodies were packaged up neatly in kraft paper bags, topped with a strip of decorative paper, and tied closed with a bow. Definitely worth it!





Will you be providing something special for your traveling guests?


7.19.2009

DIY Monogram Wreaths


I wish that I could say that the few days prior to our wedding were spent relaxing and having fun with family that had flown in from all over the country because everything was done. While most of the major things were indeed taken care of, there were a few unfinished projects that I needed to wrap up. One of those projects was our DIY monogram wreaths.


Inspired by a lovely project featured on Once Wed, I adapted these wreaths for their little carriers (two of my youngest cousins) by using sturdy silk flowers and personalized them by adding our glittering first initials.

Here's what I used to make each one:

Materials

- 12" Styrofoam wreath form
- Sphagnum moss sheets (about 1.5 packages)
- Assorted silk flowers (I used ranunculus, hydrangea, and tea roses)
- 2" wide satin ribbon
- Green floral wire
- Aluminum letter-shaped ornament
- Martha Stewart Crafts fine glitter in Smoky Quartz
- Spray adhesive
- Low-melt glue sticks
- T-shaped pins (or heavy gauge pearl-head pins)

Tools

- Wire cutter
- Scissors
- Glue gun

Here's how I made each one:

1. Prepare the letter-shaped ornament by removing its hanger and folding back the loop-shaped tab.

2. In a well-ventilated area, with newspaper protecting your work surface, evenly coat the front of the letter with spray adhesive. Carefully transfer the letter, sticky side up, to a clean sheet of paper. Liberally apply glitter to the letter (bury it, in fact!). Lift the letter and tap lightly to remove any excess glitter. (You can reuse the glitter. Pour it back into the jar by using the clean sheet of paper as a funnel.) Repeat process, if desired.

3. Cut a 3' length of floral wire, fold in half, and twist several times. Fold the wire in half again and twist several more times, leaving a 1" loop at the folded end. Trim to approximately 6". (You should end up with something resembling a crude sewing needle.) Repeat so that there is one twisted wire stake for each "foot" or base on your letter. (I made two stakes each for the letters "M" and "K".)


4. Working on the back side of your letter, flood the lower "footed" portion with hot glue. Insert the looped end of a wire stake into the glue, allowing at least 3" of the wire to extend beyond the bottom of the letter. Layer a bit more hot glue over the flooded wire loop. The metal will be hot! Allow it to cool, then repeat for the other side. Trim the stakes evenly if necessary.

5. With the wire cutter, cut 2" pieces of floral wire. Form each piece into a U-shaped pin by bending the ends toward each other. (I used at least 150 pins on each wreath. It really pays to find a comfy spot and crank out a bunch of them at once.)

6. (Warning: There steps create quite a mess. I chose to work outdoors.) Unfold the moss sheet and cut a strip approximately 2" wide along the short end of the sheet. Using the U-shaped pins, attach the moss to the wreath. Continue attaching moss until the entire wreath is covered and no Styrofoam can be seen. (Hint: This process can be rough on your fingertips. A thimble may help when pushing the pins into the foam.)


7. Remove the ranunculus, hydrangea and leaves from their stems. Using the wire cutter, trim the ranunculus stem approximately 1/2" below the flower. Whittle away about 1/4" of the plastic stem to reveal its wire. The hydrangea and leaves should easily pop off of the stem with a gentle tug.


Attach the hydrangea by wrapping it to the wreath a couple of times with floral wire, tucking in the wire ends at the back of the wreath.
8. Attach the ranunculus by sticking its wire end into the wreath like a push pin. If necessary, open a small hole in the foam with an awl or the tip of your scissors.

9. Trim the tea rose branches to size and attach by wrapping the cut ends to the wreath with floral wire. The individual blooms can be arranged and held in place with a few U-shaped pins.

10. Use the leaves as filler. To attach, poke a hole on either side of the center "vein" near the base of the leaf. Insert the ends of a U-shaped through the holes and into the wreath.


11. To make a handle for the wreath, cut a 14" length of ribbon. Fold the ribbon in half and tie a knot about 4" below the fold, creating a loop. Wrap the loose ends over the top of the wreath and secure in the back using T-shaped or pearl-head pins. Hide the pins by covering them with bits of moss.


12. Cut about 2' of ribbon and tie into a bow. (I followed these instructions for Martha's favorite.) Secure the bow to the ribbon handle using a piece of floral wire. Trim the tails of the ribbon to your desired length and notch the ends.


13. To finish the wreath, add the glittered letter to the center of the wreath by inserting the twisted wire stakes into the Styrofoam. Again, it may help to open starter holes in the foam with an awl or the tip of a pair of scissors.


Here are the wreaths in action at our wedding! :o)

7.02.2009

We're Back and We're Married!




Well Hive, we're back! Officially Mr. and Mrs. Yorkie now for 19 days, with the honeymoon behind us, we're just beginning to settle into married life. The wedding went beautifully (it was a Plan A day!) and even featured a few surprises, like thunder rolling overhead during Mr. Y's vows to add a little emphasis.

I'd like to give special thanks to everyone for the well-wishes regarding my aunt. I'm happy to report that she recovered fully and was celebrating with us at the wedding!

I can't wait for our professional photos so that I can start sharing all of the details from our special day with you. In the meantime, though, here's a little taste with these great highlights from the ceremony captured by our very talented friend, Laurel.













6.13.2009

Oh Happy Day!


Our day has finally come! In a few hours from now, Mr. Yorkie will become my husband and I will become his wife. (Just typing those words causes tears of joy to stream down my face.) I have loved every moment of our journey over the past three years and can't wait for us to embark on this new adventure together!

The last few days have had their share of trials, be it cancelled flights due to bad weather in Dallas and Atlanta to my bridal shower-gone-awry yesterday that ended almost as soon as it started with my aunt's visit to the emergency room. In spite of all that, there's an overwhelming sense of love and excitement in the air. Prayers have been answered. There isn't a gray cloud anywhere in the sky. This is the day we've been waiting for!

I'm honored to have been able to share the last bit of our planning here on Weddingbee. The time has sure flown by fast! Your encouraging and supporting comments have given me just the boost that I've needed to make it to the finish line in this wedding planning marathon. Just a few more steps to go!

Thank you again to the readers and to my wonderful fellow Bees! You are all such amazing and inspiring women!

With much love,
Soon-to-be-Mrs. Yorkie :o)


6.12.2009

Remembering & Honoring

As I sit here at the dining room table, trimming, gluing and tying our programs, I can't help but think of everything that's brought me to this moment in time. I'm not talking so much about the journey that Mr. Yorkie and I have shared for the past three years which, believe me, has been amazing. What really makes me well up right about now is thinking about the generations and marriages that have preceded mine.


Abuela & Abuelo Yorkie in Cuba, 1947

I think about my four grandparents who will not be physically with me on Saturday. (They'll definitely be in my heart and on my mind, though.) Most recently, my family lost Abuela Yorkie last August. I swear I can still hear her familiar refrain "Una sonrisa es una arruga menos"... or "every smile is one less wrinkle". She would constantly remind me, "Yorkisita, don't worry so much!" I credit her live-in-the-moment example for my relatively calm approach to planning this wedding. Oh, how I wish that she could be here!

In an attempt to honor Abuela Y (and all of those from whom Mr. Y and I have descended), we're working a number of details into the special day. To start, I'll be wearing Abuela Y's antique white gold and diamond drop earrings. They're gorgeous and match perfectly with the rest of my wedding day accessories.



In addition, Mr. Yorkie and I will be toasting with the exact same etched crystal coupes that Abuela and Abuelo Y sipped champagne from on their wedding day in 1947. Here they are, decorated by Momma Y with bits of lace from my dress.



As I've mentioned before, both of us have done a bit of research on our family histories. We will be displaying some of the treasures we've unearthed over the years during our reception. Each of the 16 tables will feature a different last name found in either of our family trees, as well as a photograph of those direct ancestors. Here you can see a photo of my great-great-grandparents, displayed in one of the vintage-looking frames we've collected, along with the table sign. On the back of the sign is a brief biography of the family.


There are a few other lovely things that we have in the works, but I'll have to share those with you in a future post. The programs are calling my name!

What kinds of special details will you be adding to remember and honor those who came before you?

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