The count down has begun....

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The Great Hair Debate

We are 3 weeks away to the day and with most things on our 'to do' list completed the biggest challenge we face now is 'hair'. Yup, hair.

As an African American female there are just to many damn choices. Do you go straight, or curly? Natural or processed?  Diane Ross or Grace Jones? 

We are so confused and unsure that we have not one, but two hair appointments at two different salons, for two different styles. Now of course one will be kept and one will be canceled but that doesn't mean we will be satisfied with the outcome. In fact, I can see myself thinking 'I wonder if the stylist at the other place would have done something better!?!?'

 At any rate, with 21 days away I do need to pick something. Heck, even if I can't grow it I can buy it, borrow it or rent it. I just need to decide what it will be!

Monday, May 30, 2011

2 Months; to the Day!

I can't believe we are two months to the day until our wedding and our wedding planning journey has almost come to an end. There has been LOTS going on even though I haven't blogged about it. Some are very small things that ad up to a lot, while others are being kept under wraps because they are still in the workings.

One of the more interesting things, at least from my perspective is the whole RSVP issue. I had read so many stories of how that is the least favorite part of wedding planning, very close to the horror of making a seating chart from what I read, but I still went into with an open mind and an open heart as I know life is busy and sometimes people do forget. Of course, reading these articles made me say to myself 'it can't be that difficult', 'these people must be exaggerating', and 'no one is that forgetful'....but in the end I had to join the majority as it was a horror story in some cases, but just like with life....we got through.

The other interested thing that has come out of this planning so far is seeing how this type of planning CAN add to a relationship both good, and not so good feelings. Good feelings as far as coming to a mutual understanding whether it be in choosing a venue, colors, a menu etc... and bad feelings as far struggling to decide who you can and can not invite due to money constraints. As I do always try to see the good, it does make us realize that we have some awesome people in our lives who do wish to be there in love and in support. For that we are thankful.

My last thought about planning thus far is more in reference to 'how' we are doing this. Wedding planning being stressful enough we had the nerve enough to take on the challenge of not only traveling right after, as in the same day, but invite those we love to join. In the beginning this didn't seem like a challenge at all, we were sooooooooooo HAPPY about the idea of cruising as a group and having some of what we thought would be the most fun with the best laughs. Most people know we can really be social butterflies when we want to be.

Now though, I realize that my idea of fun is not everyone else's. Sha and I have always been the type to go in with a positive attitude, find our own fun and if things weren't up to our speed make it such that we enjoy it because in truth we are blessed. We both come from a place that if we followed in the footsteps of those who have come before us we would never go any where, never experience anything new, and have no great stories to tell. So we are looking forward to some summer time fun, especially deserved after two years of wedding planning with no vacation in between.

Now me personally, I do find it important to yes plan for the future, but also to live in the now. As a society we are so fixated on the 'next' that we often forget the 'now'. Heck just take a look at modern technology, the emphasis we place on it in our lives and how we react to it when something new comes along. I don't ever want to miss anything because I'm so busy looking for the 'next' best thing. For life is to short and if I preoccupy myself with the next, I may miss the blessings that are right in front of me. So as they say, I'm stopping to 'smell the roses'.

So with only two months to go I am not only busy with planning, but I am feeling happy, reflective, and blessed.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Not defeated by an invitation....

Well the invitations have been sent and if I thought any part of this wedding planning was a challenge I was wrong until I tried to DIY my own invitations. Now for those who are crafty this would probably be like a relaxing cool breeze, but for me it was stressful. At times I felt like I was standing on an edge of a cliff about to swat an annoying fly which would send me plunging into my descent.

Even though my sweetie was always in my corner, telling me things would be fine and I could do this......there were times I just didn't believe it and wanted to throw in the towel. I hung in there though, and even though I am not truly happy with the finished product I am glad that I didn't give up, that I wasn't defeated by paper and a printer, and in the end I do not have to label myself a quitter.

Our 'Boarding Pass' Cruise Ship Wedding Invitation

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Shoes, glorious Shoes.

Geesh...why are a good pair of shoes so hard to find?!?!
I mean is it to much to ask that we don't want them high, but not low.
That we don't want our toes completely out, but not completely covered either.
That they need not be too flexible, yet not too stiff.
Or maybe it's the price range, I mean we don't want to pay the cost of rent nor do we expect to only pay the cost of a stick of gum.
But Geesh....why are a good pair of shoes so hard to find.....for Sharine that is!
I lucked out with my shoe search a few weeks ago so here's a sneak peek, BUT.......

.......... they look 'different' now that I own them! *sly smile*

Monday, March 7, 2011

I've Got The Music In Me ...not.

Okay so now we're at another cross road in the 'Saga of the Cruise Ship Wedding'.

As you know, or maybe you don't because it's your first time here, a cruise ship wedding is pretty much that; a cruise ship wedding. In other words, a lot of what can and can not take place or be done is dictated by the cruise ship. Case in

There are two choices.. to DJ or not to DJ. You can hire only their DJ and ONLY if you do a cocktail reception and not a sit down lunch reception. So in order to have music at your reception your hand is basically forced to book the cocktail reception.

Now of course if your into sitting at a table for 2 hours and not really having any space to move around and mingle, then the lunch reception is just for you. Since their lunch receptions are sit down they are held in one of the two main dinning rooms ie: no dance floor. As for the cocktail reception, they are held in one of their night clubs or lounges and the one you get is at their discretion again. Here there is a dance floor but no dinner tables. Almost sounds like you can't win for losing! lol

At any rate, we're not stuffy sit down folk and I know I am to ADHD to be sitting in one spot for two hours so we booked the cocktail reception. This selection now brings us to our current state of dilemmas. We can either hire their DJ for one hour at the rate of $$$$$$$$$$ or two hours at the rate of $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$. If not, they do have a sound tech for $$$$$$ who will play the music you bring.

God forbid you press play on their equipment yourself!

Monday, February 21, 2011

STDs (The Fun Kind!)

As a DIY (do it yourself) novice I decided to try and save a buck by creating our own STDs (save-the-dates) for our wedding. Sharine and I had been researching STDs long before we had definite plans of our wedding and we realized that there was just so much to choose from, plus nothing came cheap once you said 'wedding'. We also realized that our cheapest route would be either an online printing company like (,, etc...) or a DIY project by using materials from places like,,, etc..). This realization made it easy for me to at least TRY a DIY project and with the help of, and some materials from a paper store I believe we were successful.

After all, we all know that eventually STDs, invitations, thank you cards etc... all end up in one place no matter how much the sender spent.

In the garbage! lol

Save-the-Date Photo Magnet
- I designed these at, it's a wonderful site where you can create all kind of things and use your own photos and personal touches.
- The envelopes we purchased at a paper store in Manhattan
- The ribbon is good ole' fashion curly ribbon

The Full Packet
- We included the STD magnet, and a note
- The note was a poem I made up for the occasion

Return Address Labels
- We had some clear address labels already (from staples) so I just added a heart to it.

Putting It All Together
- Sha and I prepare each packet for mailing

Thursday, January 27, 2011

The Great Registry Debate

There is a great debate that some may know about out, but all those who are planning a wedding do know about; to register or not to register, for gifts that is.

Now wedding etiquette says that you must register for you are starting a new marriage household and need things to help build that foundation. Wedding etiquette also says, that if you don't register you are sending the message that all you want is money which is a no no in the world of weddings.

So as most people know Sharine and I have been together for eleven years now and five of those years we have actually shared a household along with our kids. Now when sharing a household you tend to accumulate even more especially when there are 4 people living in it. Keeping this in mind we have begun our own debate. Not a debate on whether we should register or not, but where to register. After equally deciding we did not want to register we were reminded that if we didn't it would scream 'give us money', but also people have already begin asking us where are we registered?.

That is a loaded question.

With so many places that you can be registered at it's really hard to decide. Then when you top that with the fact that we don't want to register it makes the 'where' decision even harder.

So as we begin to look at the usual places like discount stores (Target, Walmart etc..), department stores (Macys), and speciality stores (Bed, Bath & Beyond, Crate & Barrel etc...) it makes me realize I have to begin to stress myself over choosing things I do not really need. Then of course you read & hear : well just upgrade what you already have. But what if you like what you already have? and why should you have money being spent on something you already have that works perfectly well?!?

Okay now just when you think the decision couldn't be any harder comes the whole modern technology twist; online registries. Now this twist doesn't just come with the fact that you can register with the above mentioned stores online, it also comes with the fact that there are even more registry choices; honeymoon registries, buying a house registries, and even the giant elephant in the room cash registries. Now compound this with the fact that we are getting married on a cruise ship and the cruise line ask that we let guest know that due to security reasons they cannot board with presents.

I believe I've just fainted and gone to registry hell!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Make Up Trials (Round #2)

So Sha and I had our 2nd make-up trials yesterday. Our original make-up artist who's work we liked could not re-book us when we changed our date from May to July.

This time around I went for a more dramatic eye look since I wear glasses. I really liked the job she did. Sha on the other hand felt she looked to made up this time around. So although she loved her eyes, the foundation was a bit much for her. I won't say that she looked like a corpse, cause she already said it lol.

At any rate, we were really hoping that her make-up could be a little less made up on the day of the wedding as we really liked the make-up artist and want to work with her. She seemed really friendly with a down to earth personality. As she did my make-up she asked me questions about the wedding and we chit chatted a bit. Her sister who is also a make-up artist worked on Sha and she was quieter.

Today I emailed the make-up artist to tell her that although I liked her work, Sha was not very pleased with her look. It was a very nice surprise when I read her response that apologized for it and offered to do both our make-up on the day of the wedding (Sha had really liked the way she kept me looking more natural). This is especially nice considering she would have to start at least an hour earlier and we are already meeting her early in the morning.

Here are the before & after pictures:



Sunday, January 9, 2011

Lucky us.... I think!

For our wedding we are only having one bridesmaids which is our almost 14 year old, and one groomsman....our son who will be 21 by then. On the day we shopped for our wedding gowns we also had the opportunity for our girl child to try on dresses just to get an idea of what might look good on her. We will not be purchasing until closer to our July date since her size has changed and we have no idea what size she will be by then.

More than likely we will go back to David's Bridal in May. We will also have the option of finding her dress in a variety of stores since it will be prom season. Of course being the girl that she is, she has threaten to wear sneakers, and declares herself a tomboy... NOT if you be trying to show cleavage?!? Somebody get her a dictionary please.

At any rate, it was with great pleasure that she actually wanted to try on dresses (which is the good news), but of course there has to be bad news and now we are going to have to declare war on her not trying to choose some hot chick dress. Contrary to what she believes, the theme of our wedding is not hoochie!! lol

Here's what she tried on....
......can you guess which was her favorite!?!?

All in all, we are pretty lucky though since we only have to dress one female and I've read plenty of bridesmaids wedding shopping horror stories. I hope we stay this way!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Three Times The Charm!

On the last day of 2010 and the day before a new year was to begin, Sha and I began another adventure of wedding dress shopping. This would be our 5th time out and our last as our goal was to purchase and not just window shop. So for the third time we ventured over to David's Bridal determined to find 'thee' one. We had been to David's Bridal twice before, once to the Manhattan store and once to the Brooklyn store, and although we saw a few that we liked we hadn't made any final decisions. This time though, we were not leaving empty handed and in fact we didn't. We are now just waiting for our attire to be shipped and in about two months our outfits will be hanging patiently in our closets.

Here is some of the fun we had and some of the dresses we liked and disliked.....

Sha's try-ons:::

Dai's try-ons:::

In all the excitement neither myself, Sha or our daughter thought to take a picture of Sha in her 'chosen' one. Speaking  for myself I just know that I was so awestruck by my lovely bride to be that all I could do was say 'wow', and I total forgot to take a picture. As for my 'chosen' one, although we do have a few pictures I am opting not to add them here so that there is some element of "awww" on our big day for family and friends.