to-do to-have to-hold and more to-do’s

48700_fpx_1We leave tomorrow for New York, and my to-do list today is frighteningly long.  I haven’t been one of those brides who does anything having to do with a list, aside from a seating chart and a Wedding Channel gift registry (both were small challenges.  The Suitor chose the everyday china; I picked the fancy stuff).  I’ve never had formal china and always loved the idea of using it daily.  A sandwich on fine china.  Tomato soup in a delightful bowl with a heavy rounded spoon.  When it comes to flatwhere, I’m all about the heavy weight of it, and actually, the shape of the spoon.  As for lists, I don’t follow along with the rules about hair care, facials, or breaking in my new shoes.  I nearly decided to spend today by the pool, my hair twisted about in a mess of conditioning masque.  But it’s cloudy here, so I’ll make my way to a salon for a trim.  If I get around to it; I’m just not a planner.  I do hope my wedding dress fits in a week.  I’m nearly five months pregnant, and since nothing else fits… well, let’s just say I’m bringing along an alternative dress.  I imagine the Ines Di Santo gown will work out fine, but I also imagine, as the night moves on, it will become heavy and restricting.  I’ll want to change into more forgiving clothes.  Hence, I’m bringing along an empire-waist dress. 

MyringPlanning a wedding from Texas, to be performed in New York, does have its challenges.  I didn’t, for example, do a hair run-through, nor have I met any of the above, ever before: my hair stylist, photographer, evening entertainment.  And I’m not even the slightest bit worried.  I met with our florist briefly, and I still have no idea what kind of flowers will be in my bridal bouquet.  My sister is a make-up artist, so that was easy (though she is now beginning massage therapy school in Montana).  We know our rabbi, and we feel really blessed not to have a stranger up there marrying us. I chose our photographer and my hair stylist upon suggestions from my close friends.  We purchased our beautiful wedding bands from a friend in the diamond district (always, always helps to know someone on 47th Street–pictured here is an aerial view of my prong-set eternity band).  And mostly, although it’s an event celebrating us, it’s really a friend wedding.

In deciding upon our guest list, it was hard to decide whom to include.  Yes, we see them often at celebrations, but are we really friends?  I decided only to invite those with whom I speak over the phone on a regular basis.  Though there were exceptions… old friends mostly, where even though we don’t speak regularly, we are very much invested in and rooting for one another in life.  We tried to keep it intimate.  We’ll be having 95 guests. Our wedding colors are red and aqua blue.  My “something blue” will be the ribbon tied around my bouquet.  The new is the dress, the ring, the veil.  The old is my engagement ring, which once belonged to my paternal grandmother.  I’m still working on the borrowed. 

The rabbi asked if he should mention anyone, specifically, who will not be able to be there with us, either because they’re no longer living, or for some other reason.  I did think of my grandparents, but mostly, I thought of Linus.  That sweet sweet bean belongs under the chuppah with us!  Sadly, he’s far too unruly for such an event… you know, where there are actually people around.  Which brings me full-circle.  Take Linus to "doggy camp."  Sad.  Sadder still? I actually have no clothes to pack.  Maternity shopping will be had with a vengeance in New York.



  1. I LOVE how laid back you are about the wedding! I see/meet/hear of so many brides who are just freaking out about things that will never matter! Things I look back on and think I shouldn't have ever worried about because they just don't matter.

    So have a beautiful, wonderful, blessed wedding!


  2. Your wedding band is gorgeous. My engagement ring (when ever it is I get engaged, will be from my paternal grandmother as well….)

    Good luck, I think it's great that you are so relaxed, you will actually be able to enjoy your day!

  3. What an absolutely beautiful thing to read today… of all days… of a celebration to take place in New York. (I'm an "upstater" and will be blinking southward for you on your actual day!)

    Think of it this way, in terms of planning, to those who comment about your NOT planning: Tell them "At least I'm not a bridezilla!"

    This day is for you, and your future husband, to celebrate the joining of two hearts. Who the hell cares if you're carrying day lillies instead of morning glories? Who gives a rat's bootie if your hair is up or down? What does it matter, when there will be nothing but pure love and light surrounding you both on that day. Well, that, and surrounding the life in your belly too! For all four of you – planning just doesn't suit the joy. :)

    And I still think you should put Linus in a bowtie and take a pic – tie it to the bouquet with a pretty ribbon!

  4. For what its worth, you might want to consider using another wedding band for the ceremony and this one thereafter. There is a tradition which states wedding bands for Jewish unions should be made of unbroken material (no stones, etc.) for the obvious metaphorical reasons. Mazel Tov, though!

  5. God, this sounds so familiar. I didn't do the whole traditional wedding planning thing either. We had no band or dj…just an iPod. I found the florist when I went to buy herbs for our garden. I found our photographer after he shot a wedding party getting their hair done at my regular place. I did not have a hair trial. We didn't do a food tasting or cake tasting. I just didn't care and everything turned out perfectly!! We had 96 guests who were all important to us. We spent time with almost everyone of them and then after the actual event…we went to the bar with friends. It was much more important for us to have a good time rather than a stressful time.

    Best of luck with your to-do list! You will be a beautiful bride!

  6. Fantastic ring. I like your approach to the day: No stress and you realize that it's about the two of you and those who are close to you, which is what I've always thought weddings should be.

  7. Well, all is right with the balance in the universe now that you'll be back in NYC. Congrats on the wedding – i'm anxious to see pics and hear all about the food!!!

  8. Oh how lovely. So happy for you guys. I spent the weekend with your book – yep, I read it before, but it's just too fabulous to read only once.

    Happy wedding – can't wait to see pictures.

  9. I love your ring!
    My sister took the "laid back bride" deal herself. And everything turned out perfect.
    Congrats & Good Luck on getting everything done!

  10. So excited for you! If only all brides were able to accomplish such a laid back approach.

    I can't wait for the stories and (hopefully!) the pictures.

    Oh, and that ring? To die for!

  11. That's a gorgeous wedding band. I'm glad to see that you made the event about the two of you and you're loved ones and not about the "wedding" in and of itself. Hope your dress fits.

  12. Stephanie, Congratulations and best wishes on your upcoming nuptials. Just remember to enjoy your day as much as possible, it goes by so quick!

  13. Stephanie,

    I'm not usually one to comment, but have been reading your blog for a while now and am currently reading (and loving) your book. Best of luck with everything! Your confidence and ease are an inspiration!

  14. It's funny how little flowers and dresses matter when you have much bigger and more important things to think about (babies!!). Your love and support of one another is the thing to focus on, and you'll love to look back on your wedding day and realize you really understood that, even then. I don't think the majority of brides or grooms do.

  15. My daughter married 2 years ago. Ella, her 5 pound yorkie was a brides maid. She sat on my husband's lap during the ceremony. Ella was very good through out the whole ceremony, which is totally out of character for her. She could be a real toot when she wanted to. When the minister announced them and Mr & Mrs everyone clapped and Ella barked. It was cute and got a big laugh. It was a nice memory to have of Ella as she's since passed away. Love the bling and the table ware. Enjoy youself. I wish you and the Suitor much happiness. Someone gave me this poem when I married. I'm passing it to you:

    Most people get married believing a myth–that marriage is a beautiful box full of all the things they have longed for: companionship, sexual fulfillment, intimacy, friendship. The truth is that marriage, at the start, is an empty box. You must put something in before you can take anything out. There is no love in marriage; love is in people, and people put it into marriage; people have to infuse it into their marriages.

    A couple must learn the art and form the habit of giving, loving, serving, praising–keeping the box full. If you take out more than you put in, the box will be empty.

    Mazel Tov…

  16. Try to hit Belly Dance on Hudson in the West Village for maternity clothes. They have the cutest clothes and the prices are decent. Also H&M on 34th Street.

  17. Stephanie, just wanted to give my 2 cents-beautiful looking band for one. For two, a big congrats on the not stressin. Here's a little story to put it into perspective. In 2001, I was planning a big wedding in San Antonio (home) from San Diego (where I was living) while my future husband stationed in Japan. On Aug.31st, I was officially discharged from the Navy. Sept. 11 happened, and within 2 weeks, I bought a dress off the rack (vintage), sold all the furniture I could, had a mover store the rest in San Antonio, and flew to Japan to get married, in case he got sent somewhere. I can't even begin to tell you the process of getting married over there, but the memories to this day are the most wonderful, "un-bought" things we have. I was walked down the aisle by my brother in law (also a Marine)and had about 12 Marines and a Chaplain attend. No guest list, no dance, no cake, no you name it, it wasn't there.Eventually, we'll have a little ceremony, maybe for our 10th anniversary for family to celebrate with us, but even if we don't, we know no one else will ever have a story like ours. God Bless you on you special day, and kisses to Linus.

  18. Much happiness to you & Phil.

    At our son's wedding, which took place on an old bridge in the woods with just the immediate family & 2 close friends in attendance, two of the family dogs were present. As the words, "You may kiss the bride" were uttered, our son's dog, a large goldren retriever mix, jumped up, put his paws around our son's neck, & gave him a big, sloppy doggy kiss! It makes the memory of this wonderful pet that much sweeter.

  19. My parents live in Austin and our family dog stayed at Triple Crown Dog Academy whenever they left town. Luxury boarding and a beach club for Linus?

    You could even get a suite with a TV and music for him!

  20. "Borrow" something from someone in a happy marriage so you carry that happiness over into yours.


  21. damn yankee and Carole, those dog stories are sweet as can be. Now I have to picture Linus in a bowtie at the wedding. At least that's an option for dog people. I have a cat, who won't likely be walking down the aisle with me anytime soon. (Pretty as she'd look with a satin collar and small bouquet…)

    Stephanie, good for you for figuring out what's important to you and letting the rest work out as it will. Can't wait to see pictures. (The ring's gorgeous.) Best wishes to you and yours.

  22. Congratulations on finally being pregnant and having a real wedding ceremony! Do you ever go back and read your old posts? You wrote about your desire for many of the things that are now happening in your life. Congratulations!

  23. No idea if you do sample sales, but here.

    is located at:
    261 W. 36th Street – 2nd Floor
    (betw. 7th & 8th Ave)
    New York, NY 10018

    Week of September 18th…
    Liz Lange – maternity
    Belly Basics – maternity

  24. Oh Steph, what a wonderful thing is a wedding's planning.
    A question: the ring in the picture is that you have choosen?
    i would like to tell more, but, i'm sorry, my english is not very good so I wish you all the best.

    p.s.I'm looking forward to buy your book in Italy.

  25. I just received an error so I'm not sure if anything posted of what I just wrote so sorry if this doubles:
    congrats, i'm so happy for you. Weather in NY has been great, so your day is sure to be fantastic.

    Your serenity inspires me!
    You will be absolutely gorgeous with that hair of yours and beautiful face.
    Check out the popular astrologer Sue Miller for your forecast for September- under forecasts, she is my absolute fave, i know many who read her as read your blog!

  26. I wish I could take my wedding arrangements so calmly as you but something tells me I`m going to be a bridezilla. Well, atleast there`s more than plenty of time till I get married…
    Btw, I love your ring. Its very simple but still bling.

  27. Enjoy the fine china for the next four months, cuz after the guppies arrive, you'll be eating mac 'n' cheese off of Backyardigan and Blues Clue's plates.

    I bet you don't even know who the Backyardigans are yet, do ya? You will… you will!

    Safe travels! Beautiful wedding! I wish you were taking the photographs since you are so good at it!

  28. So excited for you and the Suitor.
    This is going to be a terrific day for you both. Enjoy! You deserve the perfect wedding, even if it isn't how *others* define perfect.
    God Bless!

  29. Enjoy your day, Mr. and Mrs. Beer. We'll be sending the warmest of wishes in your direction.

    Phil, take care of our girl.
    Stephanie, take care of our Suitor.

  30. Congrats on your upcoming wedding. I am so glad to see you didn't pick plain white for your china. So many of the bridal departments have stopped carrying anything with any color. Blah. : ) I have Old Country Roses (cliche, I know, but I like it because it reminds me of my grandmother's old Avon cups and saucers), but after having worked at Royal Doulton and if I had the money, I would start another set…Royal Crown Derby's Royal Antoinette.

    Are you nervous?

  31. congratulations stephanie!

    i just finished reading your book and i love,love, loved it! you deserve all the happiness that is coming into your life at this v. moment. the babies, the wedding and the suitor. enjoy every bit and have a wonderful wedding!


  32. Hey!

    I love China! Get some for sure! Although I haven’t met the right guy, I’ve already picked out my china pattern. Weird Huh? It's Wedgewood’s Chatsworth very regal. I’m sure your wedding is gonna be amazing, can you post some pics of it on your blog???


  33. congratulations on looking intently inward on a day of much outer speculation and rememberance. i pray all the best for you and your love as well as your children.

    and the ring is beautiful

  34. I am a newer reader of your blog and find it very amusing and enlightening. I will be getting and reading your book. Thanks for being so open and sharing with us, your readers.

    I hope the wedding is everything you wish it to be. I am sure you will be energized being in NY.

    The ring is is beautiful, BTW. And so are you.

    Warm regards,

  35. This is the first time i write you a post…i live in Chile, South America (yes, your blog is being read that far away)…and i can´t wait to see you in a picture with your wedding dress, the blue ribbon and The Suitor…was that too girlie? The best of wishes to you and your husband-to-be. Muchas felicidades!!

  36. If you have time to go shopping for Maternity clothes go to Cadeau and Veronique. They have nicer stuff then the other stores. I hate maternity clothes too, but these are comfortable and more normal looking than most. Good luck and congratulations.

  37. Jewelry is always a nice thing to borrow. I wore a diamond bracelet of my mom's that was willed to her from her favorite aunt. I also know of people that have added brooches to their gowns. You could also go down an entirely different path & borrow a garter! :)
    Best of luck to you guys!

  38. Have a wonderful wedding. It all sounds great–love the wedding band! Just try to relax and enjoy the day!! Mazel Tov!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.