Wedded bliss

It's been a full month since the wedding. In that time, we've gone on a wonderfully relaxing honeymoon, cleaned out my kitchen, made progress on the fence and bought a new car. okay, so the new car part is my favorite :)

This is our new Vibe. I've named her Mac because I slapped a Mac sticker in the back window and because she looks like a big, shiny, gorgeous iPod fresh out of the box.

Ain't she cute?!

Anyway, I'm still working on thank you cards and trying to get fully back into the groove. The best thing about being married so far is that we're finally able to move through our to-do list of stuff we put off until after the wedding. The fence will be complete next weekend and then we'll start replacing carpet through the house and the floor in the kitchen and bathrooms.

We've also decided to get the baby-having out of the way :) So sometime in the near future, we hope to be announcing a Mini-Miller to come.

So, yes. Lots of stuff done and lots still to do, but both Billy and I have enjoyed the past 43 days of marriage.

Read more about "Wedded bliss"...


Wednesday Night

I'm sipping a glass of Scupernong wine and watching Lost with Billy. It's nice to have some downtime to enjoy each other before the wedding. I spent the day with my mother and two of her friends getting the studio ready and I had the hardest time falling asleep last night - which means this wine is really putting me into a snuggly, sleepy mood.

Tomorrow I have to hang around the house until my flowers arrive and then I'll most likely spend the next two days obsessed with how the flowers are handling the weather, environment, etc. I had a horrible dream about a month ago that the flowers had already arrived and that I had to keep them alive for an entire month. I woke up from that dream choking with anxiety and sporting a major migraine. Now that the time for keeping flowers alive has arrived - I'm feeling those same feelings rise to the surface.

So, my agenda for tomorrow: Wait around for flowers. In the meantime, call the pastor to discuss final touches on the ceremony, finish the programs, create the memorial candlescape and get started on food cards. Tomorrow night I'm meeting the girls to make fudge, stuff favor boxes and finish stamping.

All this has taught me one lesson: Hire and appreciate a wedding planner!

-- xoxo, Kelly

Read more about "Wednesday Night"...



It's Tuesday - that means there are only four days until the wedding. And, technically, it's only 3.5 because most of Saturday will be spent getting ready and doing pictures.

I'm feeling: excited, anxious, tired, trepidatious, nervous... Just a mixture of happy and nervous. Happy because I'm in love. Nervous because our marriage is sending me down a whole new path - one that I don't know much about. I think I've gotten by in life by calling on my wits and quickly adapting to each new situation. But I have no idea how to work a marriage.

I was talking about this with A today and I realized that I just don't have a marriage role model. Growing up, none of my parents' friends were married and none of my friends lived in two-parent homes. Only three friends who feature prominently in my life - Brook, Christina and Amy - could say their parents are still together.

So divorced or single parents are the status quo for me. I've never had to jump into an entirely foreign pond before. Living with Billy is like Boston, marrying Billy is more like Japan - does that make sense?

I'm not scared to marry Billy. I'm ready to get it over with already, but I have no fear that this is the wrong choice. I'm just looking past the foot of the mountain at the work required to get to the summit where we'll both enjoy the view.

On that note - there's a lot of work left to do just to get to the mountain. For example, we spent 2 hours today getting the studio ready and will be meeting there tomorrow to keep working. I've got to get the favors made and in boxes. I've got to make programs and food labels. I've got to pick up all my cakes and other desserts and I've got finish my personal grooming.

For instance, today I underwent my very first waxing - eyebrows and upper lip. And duuuuuuuude. It HURT. Apparently it's addictive, but I don't believe it.

Alright. It's late and I've got extremely busy days ahead. Time to sleep!

--xoxo, Kelly

Read more about "Dude!"...


Counting the days

Six months ago this all seemed to be taking forever, but now the days are rushing past. I think part of the reason it feels so sudden is that I'm absolutely swamped at work as I try to pack two month's worth of work into 2 weeks. But, I'm keeping my eyes on the prize: May 8 I'll be work-free for a whole three weeks! This will be my first real vacation since I started working at Eli back in 2003.

My family shower was last weekend and I got tons of great stuff: pfaltzgraff pistoulet stoneware, corningware (with lids!), serveware, dishes, dish towels... Are you noticing a trend? It was a kitchen shower :) Billy's favorite gift was a bamboo charger from Pier One from my cousin Lynn. In private he exclaimed, "It's perfect for my dragons!" Yes, I'm marrying a man with a dragon fetish, a corny heart tattoo and the ability to make me laugh like no one else can.

But back to my - i mean "our" - gifts. My cousin Brenda gave me a stationery/stamping kit that I've already put to use. I went to a friend's last night to make the tags for my reception favors. They turned out great - I can't wait to hear everyone comment on them at the wedding.

Speaking of the wedding, has anyone else noticed that it's 2.5 weeks away? That's two weekends people! I'm nervous and anxious and excited all at once. My newest trick for getting into the wedding mood is to listen to my wedding play list on iTunes. Right now I'm listening to Frank Sinatra's "The Way You Look Tonight" and before that it was "Cruising Together" from the Duets soundtrack. Good for the nerves!

In other news: My sister Ashley is staying with us for the month. It's been great having her here, though she might tell you a different story. Javier has been on her like white on rice since she walked through the door. In fact, we had to physically dig him out of her side to get him to bed last night. I guess that's good for Ashley - cause Javi doesn't lose his marbles for every gal who walks through the door.

This weekend we have another shower - this one is for family friends and is being hosted by Ashley at Ms. Lacy's Tea House. I think we're having a work friends cookout in the next week sometime - I'll have to make my new specialty: twice baked potato casserole. Believe me, it rocks the house. If you ask nicely I'll give you the recipe.

Okay, I ordered the iLife suite a few days ago and I just got it today so I'm going to go play now.

--xoxo, Kelly

Read more about "Counting the days"...


One month to go

Less than one month to the wedding and things are starting to come together.

Examples: Tomorrow morning I pick up my dress from the seamstress hemmed and ready for wear. I have three pairs of shoes to try with it (what can I say, I like choices!). My mother-in-law (MIL) and I are meeting with the family hair stylist tonight to do a practice run. Mom, MIL and I are going shopping tomorrow to find outfits for everyone. Billy's suit is pressed and ready to roll. I've ordered flowers and the cake.

I'm feeling much more confident that I will actually enjoy my wedding - which I must admit I couldn't say with any honesty less than 2 weeks ago. But, with the help of my family and friends, I've gotten tons of stuff done and have stayed focused and on the ball.

There was one tiny snafu with the invites: John Beverly never printed them! That's right - 2.5 weeks after I ordered the invites, I called to ask if they were ready and heard that the people "called" me two weeks ago to tell me there was a problem. Um, yes, there's definitely a problem! Because I never received said phone call.

So here I was twiddling my thumbs waiting on those invitations and the whole time I could've done what I spent that last 2 days doing: creating them myself. So, yes, invites are in the mail, but, no, they aren't exactly what I wanted. I'm okay with them though. They're definitely much more personalized than they would have been.

Also, because everything was so rushed, I forgot to include my Web address in the invite package. So that sucks, but hopefully word-of-mouth will carry the URL to the people who need/want it.

Okay. Work calls. Luckily I get to take most of the month of May off of work. But to do that, I have two squeeze three pubs' worth of work into April. Which means this update was a luxury I really can't afford. I'm such a procrastinator!

--xoxo, Kelly

Read more about "One month to go"...


Time flies

Robert Herrick said it best: Gather ye rosebuds while ye may/Old Time is still a-flying/And this same flower that smiles today/Tomorrow will be dying.

I feel as though time has hurdled me through the past weeks and months and dropped me on today. But, I do have some things accomplished.

Wedding site: check
Honeymoon reserved: check

There's still tons left to do, but at this point I've got a groom and a dress and a place to get married so the rest will have to fall into place. Noticed I said will have to - cause I'm not willing to imagine anything less than that! :)

But in addition to wedding stuff, I've taken on extra duties at work while a co-worker is on maternity leave, I've got my standard 2 pub/month load along with the daily wire, plus teaching at CCCC and going to the gym and taking Javi to Tae Kwon-do and finding time to read.

Yes, I'm making reading a priority! I have renewed my relationship with the public library, which was damaged when I was a kid and could never get to the library on time with my books. I began stealing from the library way back then, but I guess it was just illegal borrowing because I'd return the books - just at my leisure instead of theirs.

But I'm devouring books at about 2 books a week these days - more than that if I can find a juicy block of reading time. First on my agenda were books I've wanted to read in the past but never got around to. Like Gods in Alabama, Caramelo and The Corrections. Right now I'm reading some Alice Munro short stories, some Dorothy Parker short stories, Night by Elie Wiesel and finishing The Corrections. There are two or three others in there but I can't remember the titles right now.

Hmm. Back to the wedding: I've got a mock up of the final invitation on my Web site, so you can get a sneak preview at www.quinones-miller.com/mockinvite.pdf. Now, this might change and I've not designed the "regrets" card yet, so don't think I'm letting the whole cat out of the bag. But do let me know what you think.

Okay - hopefully you'll get an update from me sooner rather than later.

xoxo - Kelly

Read more about "Time flies"...


Guest List Anxiety

I'm anxious to get my invites out and regrets back as it seems that my 50-person cap has fallen by the wayside as more and more people are "snuck into" the guest list. What's really great is how I find out after the fact.

I need to point out that I'd love to invite every person I've ever met to the wedding, but the reality is I can't afford it. I cannot afford to feed 100 people and I don't think my chose space will accomodate all those people. Plus, it astounds me that people I haven't seen in years really want to come to the wedding.

I think the truth is, people feel obligated to come to weddings or the go because hey, why not. Not all those people are itching to come celebrate my and Billy's marriage - which is the result of an almost 5 year relationship that half of those currently invited have never even witnessed.

I'm telling you, these days a quick trip to the JP sounds like heaven! Anyway, let's hope that half of those on the guest list (both the real one and the one people keep expanding) send their regrets so I don't go into debt over this thing.

Read more about "Guest List Anxiety"...


Get Ready For A Reception!

So I'm set on a reception site. I spoke with the gallery owner today and I will definitely be holding the reception there. How exciting! The gallery will provide tables and linens - all I'll need is serving and dining plates, utensils, etc. I mean, I don't even need to decorate - there will be real live art!

I don't think I can adequately express how excited I am. I've been having these nightmares about how the wedding turns into this circa 1987 extravaganza complete with a baby's breath and purple polyester explosion all over the reception. I mean, my mother even spoke of a "head table." I don't even want tables! I want standing and viewing and chatting and munching. And then afterwards I want us to revel long into the night - but no head tables! and no baby's breath or polyester!

To explain - it's not that I'm trying to be difficult, but I hate how things become about other people. This is my first (ha!) wedding and I really want it to be about me -- my likes, my tastes, my vision. I have no interest in what other people expect from the generic wedding. I know that what I want is not what every other person wants -- but why does it have to be? Why should I be held hostage by other people's parameters or expectations?

Here's a hint: If you're coming to my wedding because a) you think you have to or b) you didn't grocery shop this week and you're hungry? Don't come. My theme is "The Sweet Life" and that's what you'll get from our wedding. Sweets and treats and just a touch of something other. And that's OK. Ya know?

My entire life people have expected and demanded that I do things like everyone else is doing, or what people think everyone else is doing -- and I've never fallen into that mold. In jr high and high school it was about clothes and music, in college it was about degrees and careers, as a parent it's been about the "shoulds" and "should nots." But guess what?! I've gone my own way at each turn and I've lived a fabulous life. I love where I've been - I've been happy and I've been sad, but I lived my life on my terms. That's all I'm doing with this wedding - regardless of external pressures.

Ahhhh. Now that I've gotten that out. As the old proverb goes: If nothing ever changed, there'd be no butterflies. Or dragonflies in this case :).

My newest obsession is a lavendar or mint (or both) table runner thing that hangs in front instead of to the sides of the food tables. And I need to think about decorations on the cake table. And and and!

--xoxo, Kelly

Read more about "Get Ready For A Reception!"...

Day 15 of the diet and I've lost 8.2 lbs. I think Billy's down about 12 lbs. I keep telling myself I'll hit the gym this week but it's Tuesday and I haven't made it yet. I even miss it, but it's hard to get motivated when you work from home and never really have to get out of your pajamas.

Anyway, things are moving along with the wedding. I sent my measurements to my sister, who is drafting a pattern for my wedding dress. Billy and I went to Sam's Club this weekend and priced out food (mini cheese cakes - yum!). We've settled on a wedding favor and have begun making them.

So I'm feeling good about things. Luckily I have Amy coordinating everything - she's a great task master - tho my mother is a little resentful I think. But, hey, Amy gets things done and gets them done well ahead of time!

Next on the agenda is firming up my plan B (and possibly plan A) reception site and finding a dress maker.

--xoxo, Kelly

Read more about " "...


Getting Things Done

A month or so has passed since I last updated and lots of good stuff has happened. Amy and I put my printer in a head lock and got my save-the-dates in the mail. I put together a menu for the event and have appointments with several photographers.

So! There's more to be done, but I'm feeling a good sense of organization and accomplishment. Billy has set up residence in the back seat of this wagon (I mean, I think he has his own zip code now), but I'm trying to take that with a grain of salt as there are several things going on in his life now (and he's not the best at juggling stressful situations).

Billy is in class four nights a week now and his supervisors at work have both left -- leaving him to a) take on several of their responsibilities and b) train their replacements. We think he'll become one of those replacements (and be paid for it finally), but he's having to present his case now... If you know Billy then you probably don't need me to tell you he's a bit harried these days.

In other news, we've begun doing the South Beach diet together. I say together because we eat the same food, but I'm doing all the cooking and meal planning. I don't mind so much except for breakfast ... I'm having to wake up and have breakfast ready by 6:30 on weekdays. That's a.m. people!

Okay, I have a list of things to do today that won't get done if I don't get a move on.

-- xoxo, Kelly

Read more about "Getting Things Done"...