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Friday Letters

Dear Trevor, thanks for being so patient with me these past couple of days, for filling my ice packs with fresh ice, and for calling the doctors in the wee hours of the morning when you'd rather be sleeping. Oral surgery sucks, but you're helping to make it much better.

Dear crunchy foods, I miss you! As soon as my mouth is healed, you and I are going to start a serious love affair!

Dear school, I'm excited to find out who my classmates are and where they all live! Here's to hoping we get the email that tells us more very soon.

Dear honeymoon friends, next week we'll be reunited and it will feel so good :) We can't wait to drink bottles of wine, swim in Lake Michigan, and laugh until our bellies hurt with you two!

Dear daytime naps, you're pretty great, you know that?!

Dear wisdom teeth, thank the sweet little lord baby Jesus that you're out and that I don't have to recover from this surgery again. This unexplained bleeding is throwing me for a loop!

Dear Trev, you're like SuperHusband. You've worked 50 hours this week, have taken care of me, made yourself dinner, and you haven't complained one bit. I should buy you a SuperHusband cape or something...

When Life Gets in the Way of Your Well Laid Plans

Today was slotted to be the last day of Wedding Wednesday - the day that I recapped highs and lows, rights and wrongs, and do-this/skip-thats.

And then life got in the way. WOMP-WOMP-WOMP.

Instead of reflecting on our wedding day and typing up my advice to future brides, I'm laying in bed trying to distract myself from my grumbling tummy. I'm having my wisdom teeth pulled out at 1:00 pm and they're putting me under for it which means I can't eat, I can't drink, and I can't do a whole lot of anything except worry all morning long.

The best part may just be all of the food pictures on Instagram. Seriously, I'm drooling over here. Well, drooling and dreaming of the day I can eat crunchy snacks and seeded fruit again. Someone remind me why I'm having this done in the heart of strawberry season!?

Some of my best posts haven't been planned at all - I just type what's on my heart and hit publish - and I was hoping to do the same for today's wedding post. Turns out I can't concentrate on anything, much less get all sappy for you and think of my wedding day!

I promise you'll get the last installment of Wedding Wednesday soon - I'm shooting for next Wednesday! In the meantime, if you're already married, I'd love to hear your highs and lows, rights and wrongs, and do-this/skip-thats from your own wedding day.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to get back to my nail biting and playlist-making-attempt-at-distracting-myself.

P.S. This is going to have to be a pictureless post because I hopped on over to Google to find an xray of wisdom teeth to dress up this boring post and was bombarded by bloody images of what's to come for me today. I should have spared myself. 

Strawberry Picking

It's that time of year around here - strawberry season!

Trevor and I are lucky to live only a few minutes from a local farm that sells produce straight from the field. We're too poor to buy a CSA share, but we've been there every year to pick their strawberries and raspberries. This year was no different. Last week, I headed to the farm, hopped on the tractor, picked pounds of berries in the field, and headed home to enjoy the fruits of my labor {pun totally intended}.

If you're a long time reader, this all may sound familiar. If you're not, well then you really should read last year's post about my experience strawberry picking. Plus, you'll find the most delicious strawberry freezer jam recipe there!

Maybe it's in my blood, growing up on a farm, but I enjoy picking strawberries in June, raspberries in July, apples in September, and pumpkins in October. There's just something about it...

Have you ever been strawberry picking?

Mother-Daughter Take Chicago: Part 1

While sorting through the hundreds of pictures I took on our trip to Chicago, I quickly realized that our trip is going to have to be a series - there's no way I can show you and tell you about everything I want in one post. It'd be so long and chalk full of pictures that it'd be difficult to load the post, so I'm going to space things out a bit.

My mom and I enjoy visiting The Windy City, and because it's only an hour and a half train ride from Milwaukee, it's pretty darn easy for us to get away. Our latest trip was the last week of May and we had a fab time. We decided that we had done most of the tourist stuff in past visits so we switched it up this time around! In just under 48 hours, we managed to see and do just about everything we had on our wish lists.

First things first. We boarded the Amtrak in Milwaukee and enjoyed the ride, as usual.

And watched buildings like this go by.

Until we finally saw signs of the city.

One of the best things about not driving and taking the Amtrak is that Union Station is right smack in downtown. No sitting in traffic, no wasting gas in traffic jams, and no paying to find a place to park.

We walked through The Loop, visiting our favorite spots and saying hello to the city once again.

Then we hopped on a bus to take us to the apartment we rented.

With the smallest elevator known to man.

Complete with lake views!

We got settled in, took a stroll around the area we were staying in {Streeterville, Gold Coast, North Michigan Avenue} before getting ready for dinner at Grand Lux Cafe. We were supposed to meet Maya for dinner but due to a misunderstanding, we never got the chance to catch up. My parents and Maya's parents go way back, so we were all bummed about it.

My mom and both ordered salads that were not only crazy huge, they were pretty delicious, too!

After dinner, we headed to the Bank of America Theater to see Book of Mormon.

It was fantastic! If you've seen Pitch Perfect, do you remember Benji, the magic obsessed roommate? Well, the guy that played him {Ben Platt} also starred in BoM as Elder Cunningham. He was perfect for the part and seriously hilarious. The rest of the cast was flawless and Mom and left with big smiles on our faces.

We made our way back to the apartment, making a pit stop in the park before catching a bus back up to the Gold Coast. 

Before bed, we indulged in a little treat. 
You'll be seeing a post solely on these cupcakes, soon!

That's the quick recap of our first day in Chicago this time around! More to come soon, I promise!

Have you been to Chicago before? What did you love about it?

Wedding Wednesday #4

Every Wednesday this month, I am recapping our wedding as part of our two year anniversary celebration. Two weeks ago, I showed you photos from our ceremony and told you about our unity tree. You can catch up on that here if you missed it or need a little refresher. Last week, you were overloaded with photos from our reception, so don't miss that post either. Yesterday, I recapped the attire of our wedding party.

Today's post is a smorgasbord of detail photos from our wedding day. I won't narrate them too much, but I want you to absolutely feel free to leave a comment or question below if you want to know more about anything you see!

We did a first look and I regret nothing about it. We got a few moments to ourselves {and our photographer and videographer} before the wedding and it was incredibly special. It didn't change the feelings we felt as I was walking down the aisle towards Trevor - he still had an amazing reaction even though he had seen me already that morning. Plus, we got so many more photos taken and were able to get to our reception and be with our guests sooner!

I cried so much during picture taking. All tears of joy, but you can clearly tell where I get my teary-eyed tendencies from, right?

Photos of all of our grandparents on their wedding days.

Wedding Mad Libs and ribbon wands were both DIY projects. Both are featured in other photos in this mini-series and even this post!

Please leave any wedding related questions in the comments below and I will happily reply to you via email. You don't have to limit your questions to be about our wedding - I love helping brides no matter the size, feel, or location of their weddings!

And don't forget to check back next Wednesday for the last of our wedding recaps! I'll be discussing what I've learned, my regrets, and general dos/don'ts. It's bound to be full of information, so don't miss it!

All photos courtesy of Laurie Marie Photography.

Wedding Wednesday #3 - Anniversary Edition

Every Wednesday this month, I am recapping our wedding as part of our two year anniversary celebration. Today's our actual wedding anniversary, so you get an extra bonus post! Two weeks ago, I showed you photos from our ceremony and told you about our unity tree. You can catch up on that here if you missed it or need a little refresher. Last week, you were overloaded with photos from our reception, so don't miss that post either!

Today is all about our attire!

First, let me tell you, my dress was a beast to find. Actually, it was one of the first dresses I tried on... but while it was love at first sight, I thought there would be something better out there so I kept looking. And looking. And looking.

My poor mother who sat through hundreds of dresses... sorry, Mom.

Finally, I realized that I was holding that dress so high that I'd be stupid not to buy it - no other dress was measuring up! So we went back to the local dress shop, put down my payment, got measured, and waited nine months for it to come in. The dress {Jasmine Couture T180, without the jacket} was made to my hollow-to-hem measurements and you bet your pretty face I called the dress shop every couple of weeks to check on my order!

The sample dress I tried on puckered a little around my thighs so the woman who measured me told me that it would be best to order up a size. After a bit more discussion, she suggested we order two sizes up so that the seamstresses would have more material to work with. They told me that it'd be easier to take in than let out due to the fact that the entire dress was lace.

Fast forward to when my dress arrived - after I had been working out with a personal trainer for months - and my dress literally fell off of me. The seamstresses pinned me up and took the dress for alterations. 

We repeated this over and over up until the Wednesday before the wedding - the day of my final fitting. I still wasn't happy with the way the dress fit. I stayed until closing time having them fix as many things as they could, but ultimately, I still left with a dress that didn't fit me the way it was meant to.

If I had to do it all over again, I would not choose the same dress again {heck, maybe not even the same silhouette!} but I really do think that I may be the most critical of the dress because I saw it through all of the stages.

Take a peek at our professional photos because they make the dress look better!

Simple, they rented tuxes from Men's Warehouse. In hindsight, it would have basically been the same cost had we asked the guys to BUY a grey suit with us gifting them ties and/or a shirt.

I never once thought we should have black tuxes. We had a lunchtime wedding, it wasn't a black tie event, and I loved the way grey looked with navy and pink! So, from the get-go I knew grey tuxes would be what the guys would wear. It just so happened they were basically the most expensive tux rental.

The three ladies that were my bridesmaids all had different body types and I wanted them to all be comfortable on our wedding day so I told them I wanted them to wear navy blue dresses and I wanted them to be short {not tea-length or long} dresses. Since one bridesmaid lives in Texas, the other two and I stopped at a David's Bridal closer to home and they both tried on a bunch of dresses and decided on a short, strapless, cotton dress. The third bridesmaid also liked the dress so we ordered the dresses that day.

The bridesmaids wore the navy version of the same shoe I wore {except mine were ivory}. Comfortable and pretty inexpensive!

I gifted a set of genuine pearls to each of my bridesmaids. The set was made of up a necklace, bracelet, and a pair of earrings. They wore their sets and I wore the exact same set for myself.

I know this is basically the longest post of all time, but I also want to leave a little note of my feelings for Trevor on today, our second anniversary. Feel free to skip over the rest of this as it's more for our memories than anything else.

Trev, you have been an amazing husband to me. I am so, so blessed to have you in my life and I am incredibly honored that God picked you to be my best friend, husband, and leader of our family. Our second year of marriage hasn't been easy but you never wavered - you and I are in this for the long haul, through thick or thin, and for better or for worse. You will make an amazing father someday, of this I am certain, and our family will be infinitely better because of you. Thank you for being the man that you are and for being the husband that I never dreamed I'd deserve. 

I said it two years ago, but I'll say it again and again until I die: I promise to fully share my life with you through days of happiness or sadness, abundance or want. I love you, always and forever.

Come back again tomorrow for a photo post of wedding details and next Wednesday for a wrap up complete with regrets and dos/don'ts!

Please leave any wedding related questions in the comments below and I will happily reply to you via email. You don't have to limit your questions to be about our wedding - I love helping brides no matter the size, feel, or location of their weddings!

With the exception of my horrible cell phone photos of my dress, all photos courtesy of Laurie Marie Photography.


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