The engagement photos are here…

and though you may not admit it, I’m sure you were probably on pins and needles waiting for these photos. 🙂

Engagement Photo 1

No but seriously, my amazingly-talented cousin over at Nicole Clifford Photography just did the best job. And when she’s working with a couple like Jeff and me, you know she’s got her work cut out for her. Sidenote: anyone looking for a great lifestyle photographer in Kansas City should look Nicole up. She’s just all-around a lovely person.

I must admit that although I love bugging others with my obsessive picture taking, it’s much harder to be the one in front of the camera. Especially, when it comes to any kissing photos. We quickly figured out that it’s not really our thing.

engagement photos set 3^^See what I mean? I swear I really love Jeff, but every time he went to kiss me on the cheek I would naturally move away. That’s not a red flag or anything, right? Right?^^

We originally planned to take our photos outside, but the day we’d sat aside for the photo shoot on our short trip to KC over Thanksgiving turned out to be very cold and windy. Looking back, I’m so glad it was, because for our first location we ended up at an adorable urban winery downtown. And if you’ve followed this blog at all, you probably know by now that I LOVE wine (in a socially responsible way, of course).

Engagement PhotosNicole found the location for us and the folks at Amigoni were gracious enough to let us shoot a few photos in their gorgeous space. We kept it to one glass of white wine (although I tend to prefer red) to make it more photo friendly, but I can’t wait to go back and try more of their wines. The Viognier we had was delightful.

Still not willing to brave the subarctic temperatures (I’m only slightly exaggerating) we moved the shoot to Kansas City’s Union Station and their sky walks.

Engagement Photos Set 2Having shot there before, Nicole was quick to suggest it, and again, I’m glad she did. While I love the historic nature of Union Station, the sky walks offer such a clean, bright look. Perfect for a laid back feel that really showcases Jeff and me as a couple.

Now here’s where I get really cheesy…these photos make me so thankful for Jeff, family so graciously helping us out, and the big day still to come. Thanks again for following along, we can’t wait to share more of our journey!

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Photobooth fun…

with the family!

While home over Thanksgiving Jeff and I got to share in my cousins amazingly fun wedding, and lets just say we (well, mainly me) took advantage of the photobooth. In fact, I think my sister Jenny and I were the main culprits. Somehow we both magically appeared in all the photos.

photobooth 5 photobooth 4 photobooth 3 photobooth 2^^I wasn’t quite ready for the next photo. Opps.^^

photobooth 1

I think I’m sold on getting one of those for our big day, but I might have to promise Jeff I won’t spend the entire evening there.

See now, weren’t those photos a great start to your weekend? Happy Friday everyone!

This stuff’s made in New York City…

New York City?? 🙂 Wait, don’t stop reading! I’m done with the cheesy 90’s references. For now.

NYC 15Okay, so this might be a little picture overload (surprise, surprise), but I can’t help but share our time spent in “The Big Apple” visiting friends and attending one of the most beautiful weddings.

First off, fall in New York is by far the best time to be there. The weather was gorgeous. Perfect for a little brunch (caramelized apple buttermilk pancakes anyone?) and shopping.

NYC 6 NYC 4 NYC 5 NYC 7 web small

 ^^This is Jeff’s “are you seriously taking photos right now while I try to figure out where we’re going?” look.^^

Hundred Acres NYC^^Yep, that food was as good as it looks. I would definitely recommend Hundred Acres for anyone visiting NYC.^^

Our lovely friends Charley and Megan, who you may remember, took us to some great resteraunts, including the one mentioned above. It was there that we also got the chance to catch up with a few other college friends who I just adore, and don’t get to see nearly enough.

NYC 1 web small

After lots of food and a stroll through SOHO, Jeff and I headed to the wedding of our friends Jay and Kate. Let me tell you, this wedding was just amazing, and so fun too!

Jay and Kate Wedding

Not only did they get married in a church that faced Central Park, but the food, dancing and atmosphere definitely made this night sepectacular. Congrats Jay and Kate and thanks for inviting us to your special day!

NYC 11

^^My boss John and I’s poor attempt at a picture with the handsome groom.^^

And lastly, lord knows I couldn’t leave NYC without meeting up with these ladies.

NYC 10

I interned with these lovely gals when I first moved to Washington, well expect for Bailey (blonde on the left), but we all feel like she did. Then they all moved to New York and left me sad and alone in D.C. I’m still waiting for them to change their minds and move back. Any day now. 🙂

Okay, so I think I got through it all. It was a short – less than 48-hour trip – but we managed to pack in plenty of fun. Until next time New York!

One year to go and counting down the days…

until I get to marry this guy.

First photo together

Fun fact: this was our first ever photo together. I thought I’d dig it out for this post. Also, didn’t realize how quickly he turned me into a Virginia Tech ‘fan.’

I might’ve already shared the date with many of you, but if I haven’t, and the title didn’t give it away, a year from today we’re getting hitched, wed, married, etc… After that, Jeff’s stuck with me and my obsessive photo taking. Thankfully, he already loves my constant use of emoticons. 😉

Last night, Jeff and I were talking about how everyone keeps telling us this year of planning is going to go really fast, and it was then that I started getting a little panicked about how much goes into this one day. Thankfully though, I was quickly reminded how lucky I am to have a wedding day to plan in the first place. So while I may not be a perfect bride all the time, I am a grateful one, and I plan to use this next year as a reminder of the great guy I’ve found, our supportive families we love, and our amazing friends who plan to share in our special day.

Thank you all for reading about our adventures thus far. I’m looking forward to a very busy year and we can’t wait to fill you all in as we go!

My short trip home in a long list…

but, let me see how fast I can run through all that happened in the three days I was in Missouri last weekend. It started with a double date sans Jeff (uhh?), then onto a wedding, bridal shower + cooking class, and ended with a dinner with old neighbors and friends.

1. Double Date

But how did you go on a date without Jeff? I didn’t really. I kind of just tagged along on my little sister’s double date with her boyfriend, and their two friends. I wouldn’t say she was thrilled to have me there and she only allowed me one photo.

Home 1

I think her exact quote after I took this photo was, “okay you can go now, you’re embarrassing me.” Nothing like that to make you feel less cool.

2. Mike and Sarah’s Wedding

The main reason for my visit (not that the other events weren’t just as important!) was a wedding of a friend and sorority sister from college. It was so fun to see friends I haven’t seen in years! Years! If I have one complaint about living so far from home it’s that I don’t get to see the people I love nearly enough.

Sarah and Mike's Wedding 3

Mike and Sarah’s beautiful wedding was held at Californos in Westport. It exuded everything adorable about the couple and I loved it, including the gnome cake topper. The bride loves gnomes!

I also got to reunite with my two former roommates, Emma and Jill, who I spent two years with living in our small room in our sorority house. It’s amazing we still love each other. 😉 Emma also showed off her lovely dancing skills (B/W photo above) at the reception.

3. Future Cousin’s Bridal Shower

Sweet Ali is joining our family next month and I loved I was in town to join in on the cooking class at Bella Napoli in Brookside. If anyone needs a cooking class it’s me. Aside from celebrating the bride, I learned butter makes everything better (of course) and I ate some fabulous chicken marsala.

Ali's Bridal Shower

4. Dinner with the Ole’ Neighborhood

Last, but certainly not least, we had a little mom and daughter dinner on The Plaza with gals I grew up with.

Kansas City 1 Dinner with Neighbors

While we were missing a few, it was wonderful to get together with these ladies. Many of my childhood memories involve these women.

Okay, if you’ve made it through this whole post and you’re still reading, I’m working on some sort of prize to give you.

Such a lovely fall weekend in Missouri. As always, thanks for letting me share!

P.S. I also snuck away for a few hours to snap some engagement photos of a dear friend, but you may remember that post from a few days ago, here.

How I asked my bridal party…

to you know, be a part of our big day. (Is this really happening? Pinch me.)

Bridal-Party-Invites

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*Sidenote: here on our little blog, I thought I’d start updating you on plans, share a few stories about our dating years, and clue you in on any DIY tips, and ideas we have for our big day. Since today’s post happens to be the first of the (possibly many) wedding posts, I thought I’d toss out a disclaimer of sorts. And…if I haven’t lost all you male readers out there yet, bear with me, we’ll have plenty more home improvement projects! God help us. 🙂

Now back to the title. I wanted to find a cute and personal way to ask the members of my bridal party to share in our special day. I know the whole concept of creative invites isn’t new, but I found my inspiration on a Pinterest post (the site that’s a daily reminder of everything I can’t afford) and turned it into something more my own.

Bridal Party Invite 1 Bridal Party Invite %22Bridesmaid%22

I’ll be honest, Jeff was the photographer for this little card shoot, and I’d be lying if I didn’t tell you it caused a few frustrating moments. Turns out I’m a little particular about how I want things to look and on this project, Jeff didn’t share the same passion. I tried to get him to do this for his groomsman, but he declined, telling me a phone call would do. Boys.

Overall it was pretty simple. I bought the thought-cloud-shaped chalkboard at Michaels for $1.99, took the photos against a blank wall in our house, and then finished creating the cards on Shutterfly. Easy as that!

And despite all the angst it caused Jeff and I, it’s been worth seeing the reactions of some very special people in my life who will be standing beside me on our wedding day. But don’t worry, more to come on them later.

Meet the parents…

Texas style, y’all. And far less dramatic than any movie.

Texas 2

Texas 1

I’m back to blogging more regularly after a little vacation home, and then a long weekend in Dallas where Jeff and I’s parents finally met! Ekk! Who am I kidding, it went great. There was basically no chance for failure since we’re both lucky to have some pretty wonderful parents.

Meet the Parents TexasIn all honesty, we had this weekend planned well before Jeff put a ring on it, but now that we’re doing the whole wedding planning thing we decided it was perfect timing for our respective parents to meet. Since Jeff’s parents graciously offered to host, we made our way to The Lone Star State for a weekend of eating, sight-seeing, lounging, and more eating (paused the wedding diet for a few days).

Texas 3

^^See what I mean? My future hubby (I think I like that better than fiance) worked all day on those ribs and they were good. When in Texas, eat as the Texans do!^^

Kelly and Cash 1

^^These two, they were two peas in a pod the whole weekend. I’ve got a whole post on their love connection coming later this week. It’s too cute to miss.^^

Since dating, Jeff and I’ve been to Dallas many times, but this was the first time we paid a visit to Dealey Plaza, site of President Kennedy’s Assassination.

Texas Dealey Plaza

While a somber moment in history, the historical significance got to me. Jeff and I kept remarking that even though we weren’t alive at the time, we could feel the emotion as we read about all the history of that day in November.

Dealey Plaza Sixth Floor Museum

Dealey Plaza 6

Texas Dealey Plaza 2

^^As you can barely see in the background the white “X” marks the precise spot of the Kennedy Assassination, and when we finished taking this photo I turned to Jeff and exclaimed “why didn’t you smile?” Jeff: “I don’t know, do you smile at something like that?” Fair point.^^

Texas 4

What a great visit. Now we’re all really ready for the wedding. Oh wait, we’ve got a little time for that. Whew.