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I've collected several photos through the image search feature on Google. If any of the featured images are yours, please contact me so I can add a credit if I haven't done so already. I will also gladly remove an image upon request. And please return the favor of crediting: if you use one of my photos, please link back to me! Thanks for all the inspiration!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Taking a Time Out to Be a Saleswoman!

Excuse the break in blogging...but I'm selling a lot of wedding-related items (and some NWR stuff) to pay for some exciting things coming up in my life!

First up, I'm going to Vegas in a couple weeks! I can't share much about the details right now, but I CANNOT WAIT! After our failed Vegas trip planned back in October, it'll be nice getting a second chance at Sin City!

Also, I have FINALLY purchased my DSLR camera. After many suggestions from some reputable photog Bees, I decided to buy:

Canon EOS Rebel XSi body

And because I can't afford this lens yet:

Canon EF 50mm f1.4 USM Standard & Medium Telephoto Lens:
Photo Source

I will be using a Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II lens until I can get the one above.

So, as you can see, I will need to make up for some big purchases! I've already used recent Ebay sales to pay for most of my new developments, but it never hurts to have the entire purchase price of goodies paid for by selling stuff you no longer use instead of using paycheck money!

That's where YOU come in! You need things for your wedding and I need to get rid of my stuff. It's a WIN-WIN!

Some items for sale (most details can be found here):

Sequined Sweetheart Tulle Cocktail Dress

Manzanita Branches with Hanging Votive Candles (details on these here)

Bridesmaids Flower Bouquets (details here)

Pale Pink Shower Dress

White Ruffle Tiered Tea Party Dress

Contact me if you're interested in any of the items listed. And don't forget to check out my Ebay for more items!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Southern Sweethearts: Labrador in Wonderland

It's the moment you've been waiting for. Recaps...commence!

We woke up bright and early the day before the wedding to fight over bathrooms (6 girls in a condo with 2 bathrooms!) while getting ready for the bridesmaids' tea party I had organized.

Ever since I was a little girl, I've been fascinated by tea parties. My curiosity peaked when I read the classic Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

So it was only natural that I treated my girls to a tea party before the wedding! I sent out invites requesting that everyone dress up in "their best frocks and floppy hats".

I made reservations with the awesome staff at Savannah Tea Room. They let me make a custom brunch menu with no items over a certain price point (cause I was hella broke but still wanted to foot the bill for my lovely ladies).

When we arrived, we had a room all to ourselves and decided to take a couple group shots.

Aren't we all just too cute?!?

While I'm showing off photos of my gals, let me take a moment to talk about two very special ladies in my life.

My two moms: (L-R) MIL Lab Denise & Mama Lab Leslie

My mother-in-law Denise:

Simply put, without her this wedding would not have happened. She graciously opened up her checkbook and helped make up for our financial shortcomings. Although we had what most would consider a “budget” wedding, it was still too much for my mother and I to handle. She made sure all the necessary vendors had their final head counts and took care of all the big-ticket items (including our last minute hire of a cinematographer). I cannot wait to get my tax refund and proudly hand her a check for “loaning” us extra money to make sure our wedding was a reality. Not to mention, I can now officially say I have the best MIL in the world!

My mother Leslie:

Although she spent a lot of the wedding day stressing out loud, which got me worked up a bit, she was stressing about making sure my family was on their best behavior. The Labrador family is known as a rowdy bunch that butts heads quite often when at family functions. Thankfully she was able to keep them under control (for the most part-more on the exceptions later). I wish I could go back and spend a few more quiet moments with my mother on my wedding day. I know she didn’t get to fully enjoy being the mother of the bride and that makes me really sad.

Okay, back from the timeout! After the mini photo shoot, we ordered our meals and were very surprised when the food came to the table.

All of the food looked amazing and tasted just as good. And the portions were great considering how inexpensive it all was!

Some girls ordered quiche (no, not that kind of Quiche!):

Others ordered the salad:

And I had the chicken salad sandwich!

Om nom nom! I want to come through the computer screen and grab the sandwich off that plate!

And in addition to our tea (duh, this was a TEA party!), everyone had a plate of desserts:

Complete with an edible flower! It was actually pretty tasty!

And our waiter brought me a special treat for being the bride!

I took a bite of the strawberry to make it look like he was winking at me!

All of that yummy food for everyone (8 people) for only $168 total (beverages, tax, & tip included). Not gonna lie, I literally breathed a sigh of relief when the check came because I didn't know if I'd have enough in my bank account to cover it! VERY happy about my decision to go to Savannah Tea Room!

After we finished eating, it was time for my girls to open up their bridesmaids' gifts! I forgot to take photos of this part so I'll have to substitute that with photos of what I got them.

I started off by giving all the girls a gift bag that contained a monogram clutch in our wedding colors:

Clutches by Etsy Seller Longrunners

And inside the clutches, they found some wedding day jewelry:


I got myself a pair of the same earrings and the same necklace. In fact, I wore the necklace to the tea party and all the girls were complimenting me on it before they found out they were each getting one, too!

The last part of the gift was something I use all the time and think every girl should own. A purse hook! Theirs' looked just like this one but in fuchsia!

I also gifted our moms a purse hook. But they also received a couple special gifts from Mr. Lab and I that I'll have to tell you about later!

The total cost of the bridesmaids' gifts was $23.96 each! Not too shabby! :)

Before we left, we made sure to get some more shots of everyone at the table.

My side of the table: Mama Lab, SIL & MIL Lab

The other side of the table: BMs Brooke, Ashley, and Brittany

And finally, Matron of Honor Amanda sitting at the head of the table!

How southern belles do lunch!

My tea party was truly enjoyable and a great start to the wedding festivities. There were a few annoying text messages during the brunch, but I'll have to tell you what they were and who they were from a little later.

Will you throw a bridesmaids' party before the big day?

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Enough With The Bad & The Ugly! Let's Get To The Good Stuff!

Okay, from here on out, I'm only going to bring up the bad stuff in context to the day it happened. I thought hashing it all out in a few posts ahead of time would be the best way to get it out of my system. But really, it gets to be too much and makes me mad all over again. Because I'm so close to the big wedding events, I'll just mention things as they happen.

So, it is now just two days before the wedding and I'm still working round the clock to get things done before the wedding. I'm sleeping only a few hours a night and am constantly surrounded by all-things wedding, and quite frankly, I was going a little nuts...

Me having a crazy moment. I was near insanity at this point.

Mr. Lab was stuck back home 4 hours away because of his classes, so I thank God that I had some wonderful ladies accompany me to Savannah early to help out.

(L-R) Brittany, Moi, Amanda, & Ashley at our hotel's bar the night before the wedding.

Let me talk a little about my bridesmaid Brittany and my Matron of Honor Amanda (aka my BFFs!):

Although we’ve all hung out together before my engagement, Brittany and Amanda were really only friends through me. But as the wedding festivities became more frequent, they got closer and closer. Besides both hosting some of those pre-wedding festivities, they both traveled with me down to Savannah the Wednesday before the wedding to help with last minute prep. It was then that they truly bonded over their shared interest in making my wedding the best it could possibly be. They worked side by side the entire weekend taking the initiative to get things done. They routinely answered my phone and dealt with needy (and I mean NEEDY) vendors. They would come up with a Plan B whenever possible so I wouldn’t have to deal with many of the problems.

Brittany and Amanda constantly hopped in the car and made trips to buy last minute wedding supplies and slaved over DIY projects. Like our chalkboard signature drink signs:

Or assembling (& delivering!*) the OOT bags with all my "Southern" themed goodies:

And while they were doing that, I was busy putting together the rest of the flowers I had put off for so long:

The honorary flower girl's single stem.

The toss bouquet. I also put together the mothers' bouquets that night.

And I perfected the rest of the bouquets by adding twine to the handles and special adornments for my bouquet and my MOH's bouquet.

Remember how I talked about transforming the bouquets into centerpieces? Well, I did a trial run and took photos for our day of coordinator so she'd know exactly what I wanted. Looking back, I wish I had paired the mason jars with the lanterns and vice versa.

And I quickly threw together these cards for some very special ceremony readings:

After all our hard work, we decided it was time for a quick trip to the nail salon for a little R&R and some mimosas! (Btw, thanks girls for telling me that we could bring our champagne & orange juice into a nail salon! I have been enlightened! lol)

And because this post was heavy on the DIY, I have to give a special shout out to my bridesmaid Ashley (aka mash8!):

Thank you for introducing me to Weddingbee. Without WB I wouldn’t have found the inspiration necessary to create my wedding from scratch. I also wouldn't have all the amazing support afterward to work through my PWD. So in essence, this is also a thank you to the hive. It is easy to see who I drew inspiration from by checking out some of my DIY posts. And having the feedback and support of my fellow bees and all the hive members has meant the world to me. You all rock! :D

That night, I wrote what would be my final post before the wedding before things got CRAZY. Ooooo, the classic Weddingbee teaser line! Stay tuuuuuuned!

*If you deliver the OOT bags to a hotel, many of them require that you have the names of the specific guests they're for to leave them in the lobby. A lot of our guests didn't get their OOT bags because I didn't do this ahead of time. :( Luckily, MIL Lab hand-delivered a lot of the bags to people who missed out after the wedding!