Posts Tagged ‘Living’

A few weeks ago, my lovely Aunt gave Brandon and I an incredible gift! She bought for us all of our dishes– every last place setting– as well as the completer set. I decided that I had to show you!


Sorry for the small size and blurry shot! Crate and Barrel won’t let you copy pictures from their website. So sad.

We chose the Margo place setting. Initially, we’d really love the Rustic White earthenware, especially being free-form. But, it’s not dishwasher or microwave safe, which makes it a bit tricky. Sadly, we said goodbye to that set of dishes, and Hello! to Margo. In addition to all 12 place settings, she also purhcased a completer serving set for us.


We feel so incredibly blessed!

For our birthdays, which are a mere four days apart, my mother decided to be similarly gracious. She purchased our pots and pans!


Yes, that’s my thumb. Cuisinart Chef’s Classic Stainless cookware, from Macy’s. This is a 17-piece set, which apparently, she got for a steal.

Between my mom and my aunt, Brandon and I should be quite all right in the kitchen. He’s insisted, however, that we also register for a Wok. Luckily, this design by Cuisinart comes with a wok as well. Some unwitting person might make Brandon’s lifetime by giving us a wok. The boy loves his stir-fry.

As I watch our registry dwindle, I am consistently overwhelmed by the beauty and generosity of the family and community I live in. I cannot believe all the support that Brandon and I have gotten. It’s not the gifts that people give us that matter, it’s the thought and effort that they put into giving us the token that makes me believe we will constantly be supported. With a gift comes their sign of approval, of love and care. It makes us feel so blessed.

And the beauty of it is, with the gifts that we receive, we are able to begin a community as well, opening our home to those we live with, and serving others in the way that our community has served us. It’s a beautiful thing.


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Over the past week or so, I’ve been thinking a lot about this conundrum. What am I really looking for in this wedding? I mean really. looking. for. I’ve found myself an absolute sucker for buy-in. Yes, I think, I must have the letterpress invitations; I must give out favors to all of my guests; I must must must do everything any wedding magazine tells me, because this day needs to be absolutely perfect.

The more I think about my attitude, the more disgusted I get with myself. This is a day about Brandon and I, and about the community which embraces and honors our commitment to one another. It’s a wedding. It’s a wedding, it’s not a photo shoot. I need not strive for perfection; no one will care about the shade of green that my shoes were even halfway through dinner. What matters is that our day is deeply personal. Authentic. It shouldn’t matter to me that I think one of my FMIL’s requests is cheesy, because it’s about the symbolism of it. I need to continue to remind myself to embrace the authenticity of the event, even when things don’t go as planned.

Authenticity, authenticity, authenticity! This is my new mantra. And, really, the more authentic, the more absolutely perfect the day will be.

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Well, I’m an interesting sight right now.

I’m sitting at my friendly neighborhood Borders, perhaps my favorite thing to do on any given afternoon. Sitting in front of me is “The Complete Works of Emily Dickinson”, edited by Thomas Johnson, as well as my laptop. I’m currently writing a paper on Dickinson’s perspectives of God as the Angel of Death. Also in front of me is the April edition of Real Simple, a new mag addiction. Next to Real Simple is Colin Cowie’s “Wedding Chic,” a must-read, as well as Mindy Weis’s “The Wedding Book.” And what’s sitting on the very tip-top of the stack? US News and World Report’s Ultimate Law School Guide, an LSAT prep book, and this month’s issue of “The Economist.” My Google Reader is one-third wedding, one-third living, and one-third domestic and international news. On any given day, you might find me engrossed in Martha Stewart Living, or Hillary Rodham Clinton’s autobiography.

I don’t like to segment my life; I really don’t. But I’m finding more and more that this blog, and the wedding blogging world, provides a creative outlet that I don’t necessarily find in my final semester of classes or my professional grooming.  And it’s nice. I’m rather beginning to enjoy it.

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I think it’s about time I more thoroughly explain the name of my blog.

My future husband and I are considering the option of mutually hyphenating our names. In our mind, a marraige is the union of two whole persons, two selves, into one cohesive unit. With the fusion of individuality comes an assumption of one another’s lives, families, traditions, values and spirituality. Thus said, I decided to hyphenate my name. I am not giving up my family, and thus myself, but rather I am assuming an additional family and reforming my sense of self and identity. My fiancee, then, feels it only right that his name by hyphenated as well, to further reflect our mutual commitment to each other.

Really, engagement is a hyphen sort of time. We’re stuck in between two worlds, no longer single, but not yet married. We do not live together, but spend the majority of our time thinking and planning for such a collission of worlds. I’m trying to learn how to appreciate that dash as a symbol of metamorphosis; soon, something new and beautiful and whole will emerge. This isn’t a time that I want to move too quickly through, as some essential development takes place now. I don’t want to be so focused on our future that I forget our present.

This blog catalogs my attempt to live in the dash, so to speak. To maintain an edge of social critique while managing not to get too bogged down in satin and lace, lovely as they are. Yes, I can search for invitations for hours with my mother online, and yes, I am an intelligent and capable leader at the same time. I can squeal at a beautiful calla lilly centerpiece, but I still care more about getting out of Iraq. I can enjoy my bridesmaids dresses and accessories, but I much more love the women that wear them and their current friendship. One needn’t be compromised for the other. I want to love the best of both worlds not through mere toleration of this phase of life, but through exuberant fusion.

Here’s to life in the dash, the hyphen.

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I’d like to start a series called “Philosophical Fridays,” in which I discuss my priorities of wedding planning. One thing that’s been on my mind lately is priorities. Another future bride and I were talking about our weddings. Having recently read The Offbeat Bride, her perspective on weddings has changed from a former hatred and disgust to loving acceptance; she now feels that her wedding will be liberating, rather than confining.

Part of our conversation about the book involved the concept of community. The phrase, “It takes a village,” comes to mind when thinking about the process of weddings, the adaptation of two communities to accept and honor a couple and their commitment. In this case, It Takes a Village to have a Wedding!

This has been particularly apparent with me lately as I’ve been having some hard discussions with one of my bridesmaids. Newly married and newly graduated, she and her husband are hard-pressed on money (who isn’t?) and were questioning their ability to participate fully in the event. As we talked, I was certainly disappointed. She is one of my best friends, and I want her to stand with me. However, the more I considered the situation, I realized that the well-being of our friendship is far more important than an overpriced bridesmaid dress. I’ve been in weddings that have severely strained friendship over a bride’s fixation upon perfection, rather than an appreciation of the meaning and beauty of the day; I’ve been miserable, have required some serious wedding detox, and have had to patch up a relationship over what should have been the happiest moments in life.

So, when I think of my wedding priorities, they can’t be seperated from my life priorities. And on the top of that list is the love of friends and family, always secondary to the love of a dress (no matter how lovely).

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