Thursday, September 29, 2011

My Shoe-cision

After going back and forth for a while, I'm finally ready to share my wedding shoes. Honestly, I've had them for a while, but I had my doubts. In my last shoe post, I talked about my desire to rock red shoes. I found the Stuart Weitzman Turalu available online and figured I would buy it if nothing else sparked my interest. Unfortunately, most of the shoes that I wanted were discontinued in red or out of stock in general. I tried holding out until the holiday season in hopes that more red shoes would come out. But I had a feeling in my gut that if I waited too long my "safety" shoe would become unavailable too. The day after I bought them I checked the website again and they were no longer available in my size. Phew!

Stuart Weitzman Turalus!

They're the right color that I wanted, not too bright and not too dark. They're also very comfortable. I originally wanted slingbacks, but think that these are a better option. They're comfortable and classy. And they fit better with the style of my dress than slingbacks would have. I know I haven't shown you my dress yet, but you'll just have to take my word on it! I was hesitant to buy these because I kept thinking that something better would come along. Most people told me to keep looking, but I honestly feel that I would have been waiting forever for the right pair of shoes. More indecisive than Goldilocks, nothing would have been "just right" for me. I'm happy with my Turalus though and not just because they give me a (loose) excuse to sing my favorite guilty pleasure song. Toora-loora-toora-loo-ra-aee?

Come on Eileen! / Video via Youtube

Did you pick the shoes you originally envisioned?

*All photos are personal

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I Love Long Beach

One of the easy decisions Mr. Warbs and I made concerning the wedding was our engagement sesh location. Without a doubt our favorite place to be is in our own backyard, Downtown Long Beach. After all, it was here that we began the next phase of our lives together. From moving in together, getting engaged and countless amazing nights, the city has witnessed some huge moments in our relationship. And it's pretty awesome.

We spend most of our time bouncing back and forth between The Pike, Rainbow Harbor and Pine Street. On Sunday we walked around some of our favorite spots to take notes for the engagement sesh. Our photographer isn't familiar with the area, so we wanted to make sure we had a clear path set for the day. Time for gratuitous photo time!

I think I was talking to the fish...?

Unflattering shot of me singing

Where are you taking your engagement photos?

*All photos are personal unless noted otherwise

Sunday, September 25, 2011

DIY Make-Up

 Now that I have an idea of what my engagement sesh look will be, it's time to get the make-up down. While Mr. Warbs was busy with football this weekend, I tried out some "war paint" as Mama Warbler likes to call it. I've worn make-up before, but have only recently started wearing it on a regular basis. My main problem is that no matter what I do, I always end up looking shiny after only a couple of hours. I sweat a lot, (TMI?) even when it's not hot out, so I'm constantly feeling self conscious. I needed to find something that wouldn't make me look as shiny. A friend of mine recommended MAC's Oil Control Lotion and swore that it kept her shine free.

Image via MAC Cosmetics

A quick trip to my local MAC store and I had the magic elixir in hand. A helpful make-up artist also recommended I try the Prep + Prime Face Protect cream. She said that the cream helps prevent oil from breaking through your skin. I was skeptical because it was kind of pricey, but decided to go home and try it. 

Image via MAC Cosmetics

First here is my freshly washed face:


And here I am after applying fresh war paint:

I'm wearing concealer, powder, eye shadow, eye liner, bronzer, mascara and lip gloss. I also used a pencil to color in my eyebrows. I liked the way it all turned out, but was anxious to see how long I lasted shine free. Eventually Mr. Warbs ventured away from the TV and we went for a walk around the neighborhood. We needed to pick up a few things from the store and I also wanted to scout for good photo op places. It took us about an hour and half before we stopped to get something to eat. Even though I was sweating in the sun, my make-up held up! I will definitely be adding the Prep + Prime Face Protect to my make-up routine. Thank you, MAC!

What are your make-up must haves?

*All photos are personal unless noted otherwise.

Friday, September 23, 2011

We Forgot the Ceremony!

 Image via Chicago Now

It seems like with everything that goes into planning a wedding, sometimes the ceremony is overlooked. Just me? Fine! I've put most of my energy into picking the right photographer, food and minutiae that I forgot all about the ceremony. Like, seriously. Whoops!

Somewhere during the initial stages of Operation Wedding, I briefly scribbled down what I wanted for the ceremony. In fact Mr. Warbs and I sat down to write separate lists of what we wanted for the wedding. We then read over each other's list and crossed off three things we didn't agree with. At the time Mr. Warbs thought this was a list of what we wanted in life in general. Which is why his first pick is Shakey's Bunch a Lunch. Never make your fiance do wedding activities on an empty stomach ladies.

My list might have been a tad longer.

Aside from my horrible penmanship and spelling errors, I'm really sad that I didn't include anything regarding the actual ceremony. You know that thing that actually unites us as husband and wife? So Mr. Warbs and I sat down to talk about what we wanted. We both agreed that we didn't want a super long ceremony. Surprisingly, Mr. Warbs agreed that we would write our own vows. He is painfully shy and doesn't usually like being the center of attention. But he is dead set on writing vows that will either make me cry or make my face melt from the super awesomeness. We have a bet going to see who will cry first. 

Aside from writing our own vows, I also wanted to include a small ceremony within the ceremony. At my cousin's wedding, she used the ever popular Unity Candle. I'm not sure if this is a component in every Unity Candle ceremony, but my cousin had her mother and her husband's mother each light a candle. The mothers placed their candles on the small table at the altar and the bride and groom lit the large candle with their mothers' candles and them out. Mr. Warbs was NOT a fan of this, because to him it represented removing the mothers from the bride and groom's life.

Next up, we looked at Unity Sand. It is basically the same as the Unity Candle, except you're pouring different colored sand into a container. You then display the sand somewhere in your home. I wasn't a fan of this one, because it just didn't seem to fit our personalities. And I could just see one of us knocking over the sand one day.


Lastly, we checked out the Wine Box and Love Letter ceremony. I've never heard of this or seen it at another wedding before so I was intrigued. During the ceremony, the bride and groom place two glasses, a bottle of wine and sealed letters to each other in a box and nail it shut. If the couple should ever have trouble in their marriage, before making any rash decisions they would open the box, drink some wine and read each others' letters. If the couple doesn't have any problems they can open the box on a major wedding anniversary. 

This tradition appealed to us the most, not just because we drink a lot of wine (we drink a TON of wine), but also because it's realistic. More than half of marriages end in divorce. Nobody is perfect, everyone has problems whether they're big or small. I think it's honest to acknowledge that sometimes we all need a fail safe to get through it.

What traditions are you incorporating in your ceremony?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I'm Ready for My Close Up!

It's almost time for our long awaited engagement session! In two weeks, the Warblers will channel Madonna and strike a pose. Or snidely proclaim our hatred for hydrangeas. Not cool, Madonna! In case you missed it:

Madonna Loathes Hydrangeas / Video via YouTube

Of course, engagement sesh time gives me the excuse to run out and buy some new outfits. When I sat down with Mr. Warbs to discuss our "engagement look" Mr. Warbs shrugged and said, "I don't know...jeans and a polo shirt?" Boys. Lately I've been getting anxious about our photos, because the plan is to use them in our invitations. And like a zillion people are going to see them. OK, more like 50. But that's a lot to people who don't like taking photos. People like the Warblers. So I turned to my good friend Google to figure out my "look". Here are a couple I created.

Photo credits:
Payless Shoes Sandal, Forever 21 earrings, Nordstrom dress, Forever 21 necklace

Photo credits:
Nordstrom dress, Payless Shoes red platform pumps, Payless Shoes glitter slingback, Payless Shoes double strap sandal

As you can tell, I am leaning towards the kimono/shirt dress look. I think red is my signature color, so I'll probably wear a red dress. I couldn't narrow down the shoes for the blue dress so I threw them all in there. Although I would love to rock a blue dress and  kick ass red shoes in the photos, I can always save the shoes for the wedding! Which dress do you like, red or blue?

Friday, September 16, 2011

Let Me Eat Cake

The Warblers have been busy birdies. We've finished paying off our venue (can I get an amen?), bridesmaid dresses have been ordered and rehearsal brunch plans have been made. But what makes us feel sugar induced happy? We've booked our baker!

Image via

If you remember, my last cake tasting experience didn't go so well. This time Mr. Warbs and I were better prepared to handle things. Mainly, we were prepared to walk away and voice our opinions better about things we didn't like. Ever the anxious bride, I set up two appointments in one day, one in the morning and one in afternoon. Both bakeries specialized in cupcakes, which we decided to go with over traditional cake. Our first appointment was a welcome relief. An open store front and fresh cake? Yay! But, while the cupcakes were definitely good and everything looked to be on the up-and-up, we both agreed that we did not get a friendly vibe from the shop. They weren't rude, just not as warm as we would have hoped. After a quick bit to eat, we arrived early at our next appointment.

Immediately we were greeted by warm people and even though we were early, someone helped us right away. After gathering a few details, we were quickly served our first round of cake. The flavors are as follows: Top right is vanilla cake with  a layer of orange creme filling and a layer of pina colada filling with coconut flakes. Top left is coffee cake with a layer of Kahlua filling and a layer of Espresso filling. Bottom left is chocolate cake with a layer of Kahlua filling and a layer of ganache. Bottom right is chocolate cake with Oreo creme filling and a layer of ganache.



We really liked the top left and bottom left combos. I liked the other two as well, but Mr. Warbs was not keen on the coffee cake so that was a definite out. Mr. Warbs liked the creme filling for the vanilla cake, while I liked the pina colada filling. After taking down our notes, we were served cupcakes. Glorious cupcakes!

 I couldn't even snap a photo before Mr. Warbs started unwrapping the chocolate cupcake!

 The damage

We loved loved loved all three cupcakes. As you can see, Mr. Warbs especially loved the chocolate. He is seriously scraping the cupcake paper with his fork for more! The flavors are from left to right: chocolate with chocolate, red velvet with cream cheese icing and pink velvet (strawberry) with strawberry icing. The red velvet was so light, just how I like it! Even Mr. Warbs liked it and he is not a red velvet fan. And the pink velvet was a nice alternative that tasted surprisingly good. We were sold!

We had serious sugar highs

So what did we learn from our cake trials and tribulations? Be prepared to eat bad cake. But be vocal about what you like and don't like. Don't be afraid to voice your opinions, even if they're not nice. And please, don't e afraid to walk away! Eventually you will find the right bakery that will make everything worth it.

*All photos are personal unless noted otherwise

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Sneaky Jealousy Spiral

I've put off writing this post for a while because, well it's a little embarrassing. And petty, very petty. What am I talking about? Wedding jealousy. We all feel it from time to time. It usually starts off as a small twinge, that you can brush off. But it continues to grown until you have to deal with it. Hive, I admit to falling prey to the green eyed monster.

When Mr. Warbs proposed, I was ecstatic. I wanted to shout it from the roof tops and tell everyone. But, I was a little hesitant to announce it at work for a couple of reasons. I didn't want to be known as the "look at me!" co-worker. You know the one They tell you every detail of their life, whether you ask or not. Also, I wanted to contain the information as I was not planning on inviting the whole office to the wedding. So when I got to work the day after the proposal, I didn't say anything. It killed me. When I got home Mr. Warbs encouraged me to just tell a few people on my team, so I could squeal with glee. But before I could tell anyone, one of my co-workers returned from her vacation in Rome with big news, she had just gotten engaged. In freaking ROME.

Image via Robot Reviews

She excitedly rushed over to tell me the news and all I could squeak out was " too!" I was so frustrated that I hadn't shared my engagement news first, because 1) there's no competing with Rome and 2) I would now be the "me too! me too!" girl. A part of me knew I should have been excited that I had someone else to share wedding planning adventures with (this was before I found the Hive!), but I was just down right jealous. I felt like she had stolen my thunder. Ridiculous right? That my friends, is the power of the green eyed monster. Even though you know you're being crazy, you can't help falling into the spiral. The same week as our engagements, another co-worker announced she was pregnant and baby talk soon replaced wedding talk. Ha! Eventually, I sucked it up and got over it. But seven months later, I can't help but feel the jealousy flare up every time someone else gets newly engaged. What about you, Hive? Does anyone else go through fits of wedding jealousy?

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Bridal Bling

Why look what arrived in the mail the other day...

My bridal jewelry! Yeah-uh! In my previous jewelry post, I raved about and Tejani jewelry. After going back and forth on whether or not I should buy the jewelry, I finally opened my wallet only to find that the sale had ended. No bueno. I kicked myself for not acting sooner! But ever the persistent bride, I stalked Dress Rush every day for the rest of the week. I didn't see any jewelry that I liked as much and felt myself getting anxious. I was prepared to head over to Tejani's website to put the items at full price, I WANTED that jewelry. At the end of Tejani's preview sale I got lucky. All of the jewelry was back on sale for the last day of the preview. Including the bracelet and earrings that I wanted! This time I did not hesitate. Bridal bling purchased! So without further ado, my wedding day jewelry!

Non-openable bracelet

Drop earrings

 The set

What say you, Hive? What's included in your bridal bling?

*All photos are personal