Archive for March, 2008

I admit, I am one of those ambitious brides who is making all of her invitations by hand. I actually enjoyed doing it, too! They’re really nothing spectacular, but I think that they look nice and clean. (Pictures to come at a later time!)

Before I even started making the invitations, I decided that every good invitation needs a good map. Mr. Bean and I had received an invitation where the map was a photo copy from map quest and it was very difficult to read. Given that I like things to look nice, clean and not cluttered I knew that our maps had to be a step up from map quest, yet I wasn’t willing to pay someone else to make one. I reckoned with some basic tracing skills, anyone can make a pretty map!

Step 1: From google maps or your favourite map provider, print of a copy of your map.

This is what my map looked like. Darken any roads or landmarks that are important.

Step 2: Take a blank piece of paper and trace the important roads and land marks.  Label each road until you have a drawn version of your map like this:

Scan this drawing and open it in a program like corel, powerpoint or publisher. I used publisher. (Yes! for low-key editing programs!)

Step 3: Using the curve and freeform tool, trace the lines on your map. (Play around with it to get the hang of it – it’s okay if it isn’t perfect the first time.)

Once all the lines are traced in, type in the road and landmark names. Make sure to include the addresses of the venues!

Step 4: Make lines desired thickness. Adjust all text to fit with slopes of roads. Group all the objects together. Scale to the correct size.

Step 5: Print and you’r ready to go!

The final product:

I printed this map with four to a page and it fit nicely in our envelope.

That wasn’t too bad, was it?


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Rehersal Dinner Woes

Given the numerous allergies in my family, picking a place to have our rehearsal dinner has been a challenge.  Mr. Bean’s parents graciously offered to pay for the dinner, so we’ve been trying to get things organized in advance. First off, we wanted to have the dinner at the golf club my parents belong to as a red flag comes up with everyones allergies. However, on August 22nd, they are having an East Indian inspired menu, which definitely won’t agree with everyone’s delicate digestion. (The last thing we want is for all the guests to be gassed out by the male portion of the bridal party.) 

Then, one day, Mama Bean was talking about  how she could eat and enjoyed eating Greek food and the perfect solution came to us – The Broken Plate!It’s a 3 minute drive from the church, they serve excellent food and it would be “significant” because I studied in Crete for a month last year! However, our bubble was burst when we found out that for a group of about 30, we could either eat at 4:30 or 8:30 and it would cost $40 – 50 per person. Considering that we were planning on having our rehearsal at 4 or 4:30 neither of those times would work very well. So we’re back to the drawing board. 

Some potential ideas:

Chianti’s – a lovely Italian restaurant that is reasonably priced and a 5 minute drive from the church. Unfortunately, if you don’t like pasta, you’re out of luck. But they do have rice pasta!

Nick’s Steakhouse – who doesn’t want steak (not me, I don’t eat beef.) Excellent food and a bit farther drive, but I know that we can eat here.

Any suggestions? 

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When it came time for us to look for a cake, I was really excited, for cakes are really pretty. So I started looking for pictures on the Internet and found delights such as: 

Next was to find a bakery in Calgary that was able to make such cakes with these criteria:
1. Look pretty like those cakes above.
2. Not contain Gluten (so basically wheat flour) or dairy (with minor “no”s for soy, eggs and cinnamon) 
3. Not be fruitcake.
4. Not be chocolate cake.

So, idealistic me found 8 different places that made wedding cakes in Calgary. Four flat out said that they don’t make GF cakes, one suggested a bakery that was capable of making fruitcakes, one was the bakery capable of making only fruitcakes, one that could make GF cakes but had recently moved out of the country and  finally a champion baker that said that she could. This angel is Judy of Cake Sensations.

Thus, Mr. Bean and I drove to the most possible southern tip of Calgary to meet with her. She was extremely nice and after showing us her beautiful pictures and Mr. Bean tasting some of the gluten-tastic samples, we were sold. Here was a baker who would make us a dairy, gluten and fruitcake free cake that will look AMAZING!

Our cake will look like the picture below, only with black instead of white ribbon and red flowers. We’re also going to have penguin cake toppers that she will make from sugar paste. The top two layers will be gluten free and the bottom will be made with wheat (it’s cruel to feed GF products to normal people. Plus, it means more cake for me!) The best thing is, since the fondant icing has soy in it, she is even making a special cupcake for my mum so that she can have some cake, too! How cool is that? 

How did you find your perfect cake?

The cake was a couple hundred dollars more than we had budgeted for originally, but I think it’s worth it. What items have you gone way over your budget on and felt completely at ease about? 

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Communion or not?

Something Mr. Bean and I have been debating since we got engaged was whether or not to have communion in our ceremony. We’re both practicing Anglicans and have been going to church for our entire lives, so the symbolism of partaking in communion would be very significant. However, there are a few points that make having communion less favourable. 

Pros Cons
  • Very symbolic – inviting God into our new married life from the very beginning
  • Important to our faith
  • Involve more people in the ceremony
  • Communion for 175 guests is a production
  • It will add at least 30 minutes to our ceremony – generally people enjoy shorter wedding ceremonies and then if I’m late, there is less time to play with for pictures, greeting guests, etc.
  • Need to find communion servers and make sure ushers know what is happening to prevent a gong show
  • Have to pay vendors to stay there longer

After much discussion and angst about timing of the day, we have decided to not have communion. Besides, everyone knows that all I really want is a huge red wine stain down my dress because I was nervous when the cup came to me! (or not.) Now we are deciding  whether or not to include a unity demonstration – like a unity candle type thing. It’s time to do some research – any suggestions? 

For those of you who are/were also debating as to whether or not have communion, how did you come to your final decision?

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Mr. Bean and I have been taking ballroom dancing lessons at the university ballroom dancing club since September and they are a TON of fun! (Mr. Bean even has fun!) No awkward junior high dancing for us!

Now comes the hard part – what dance to do as our first dance? Neither of us have a particular song that we want to dance to, so we’re going to base it on what we like to do. My favourite dance by far is the Tango, but I don’t imagine it would be quite as exotic in a huge dress. Tango + Huge Dress = Bad.

Since we both love the Tango, we’re thinking of doing it as our last dance – once we’ve changed into slightly more dance-friendly clothing.

My second favourite dance is the Cha-cha. It’s quite saucy and fun.  I think if you get a slow enough beat, it’ll be doable in a dress.

Isn’t that just a lot of fun?

Do you think that doing either of these dances is doable as a first or last dance? What are you and your FI planning to dance?

Note: We are no where as good as the dancers in the videos – not yet, anyways :o)

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Hair Ideas!

Instead of doing my homework for school, I’m doing homework of a different variety – look for pictures of what I want my hair to look like!

First off, I’m going to have shoulder length (ish) hair by August, which means that a lot of crazy updos won’t be possible. I would like to have my hair completely up, for it’s a lot of fun. I was kind of thinking some variation of a higher chignon (so not at the nape of my neck, but I don’t want hair piled on my head).  I would like it to be curly (for having curly hair is quite exotic when you have naturally straight hair). 

So, kind of a variation between the two. I like the side-swept bang. 

I would like to have my veil below the “bun” like this:

I would also like to have a flower or two in my hair, but not a ridiculous amount. 
I would like the flower to be located somewhere between as represented in the pictures. (I realize that the second one isn’t a flower, but it gives the right position.)

Now, I can only just hope that it looks okay on me! Any suggestions? 

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Migato Shoes aka. Shoes Part 2

When I was in Crete last May, there was a sweet shoe store in Chania called Migato, where I got my token pair of “European Holiday shoes”. They even have some shoes that might work as the pair I bought is easily wide enough for my feet and they look really cute, too! (Look at the red ones):

These look like they could be wide enough with a low enough heel. They are dress enough so I could wear them again at work!
 I’m not sure whether or not I really like the buckle, but these are quite cute!

I don’t know if I really like the weird white thing on front, but they could work?
I love this style of shoe. It’s probably a bit too casual for a wedding dress though (sad day).
(All images from Migato.gr)

(I find this entertaining: apparently these are moccasins.)

Their prices are fairly expensive (my pair, which kind of looks like the last pair in shape) was 65 or 75 Euros (90-100$CAD), but I would definitely wear them again.

HOWEVER, the sad thing is that Migato is only a Greek Shoe Line (Which part of Greece, Albania or Cyprus do I live in? Unfortunately, none) and they don’t appear to have online shopping. Time to be creative. Any ideas? 

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