aaaaaaand we’re back

May 16, 2010

Self portrait overlooking Tuscan hills from San doesn't get any better than that.

I know, I know…I’ve been MIA for two weeks. And I’m probably going to be MIA for a little bit more because I just want to relax and bask in married bliss. It feels WONDERFUL–I really don’t think our wedding could have been more perfect, and it just keeps getting better.

But of course, the to-do list isn’t over–we’re still working on thank you notes, changing my name at all the important places, and redoing our kitchen thanks to all the great gifts we received from our amazing friends and family. So although I plan on giving you a full update on our wedding and honeymoon (which was simply sublime), it might take me a little while.



It’s official. We’re the new Mr. and Mrs. Csuka.

…and here’s what we’ve been up to.

Jon and I both had Friday off (which was nice, because he hardly ever gets a holiday from work). We went to the N.C. zoo with these lovely folks:

And saw a two-headed giraffe:

And our favorite, this little otter:

We had great plans to kidnap it, but after deciding that a bathtub might not be the best place to keep an otter, we left it in its home.

Then I spent most of Saturday in Salisbury with the maid of honor’s mom, MammaZ. She’s being sooooo generous and letting us borrow some of her vintage vases for the wedding reception, and we went to some thrift and antique shops to round out the collection. Well, when I say vases, I mean vases, parfait glasses, bottles–pretty much any vintage vessel that will hold flowers. And now we have A BUNCH. Here they are on our dining room table:

We’re going to have about 16 tables, with two or three vases on each, filled with ranunculus, peonies, dahlias, roses, hydrangeas, snapdragons, hypericum berries and greenery, and whatever other big blooms our florist can find. There’s lots of depression glass, which I adore. I may still go out and get a few pink or green fleur-de-lis glasses to add some more color, but other than that, I think we’re done. Which is good, because I’m just about exhausted.

I spent the past couple of hours photographing each vase and taking inventory–half of these need to go back to MammaZ after the wedding and I want to make sure we can track all of them. But for now I’m going to call it a night. Hope you’ve all had wonderful Easter Sundays!

The good with the bad

March 20, 2010

It’s been a week, and I still haven’t recovered from our trip to Connecticut last weekend. We were supposed to be there by midnight on Friday night, but–due to a crazy nor’easter–we landed 13 hours later in a different airport. We rebooked flights four times and were STILL late for the bridal shower Jon’s mom and aunt were throwing for me. The guests had been there for an hour and a half by the time we arrived, so to keep everyone from waiting too long, I immediately sat down in front of a room full of women I’d never met and opened more gifts than I could count, and then everyone left before the trees took another power line down. Oh, but not before I posed for pictures wearing the ribbon hat (apparently a shower tradition). There are photos of that somewhere, but I have no plans for gracing my blog with any of them. ;) We turned around and left early the next morning.

Jon’s mom and Aunt Mary really know how to host a party! It doesn’t get any better than a personal chef, free-flowing champagne, and great company. But as fun as it was, I’m glad to be home. I’m all for parties and visiting, but after the weather and those plane rides, I just want to put on sweats and fall asleep.

Poor Jon had to wake up early and do it all again yesterday morning, but this time he was headed to West Palm Beach. His dad planned a “bachelor weekend,”  so the two of them, some of Jon’s groomsmen, and some other family and friends headed down to Florida to golf and catch the Mets at spring training.

I have to be honest–the whole bachelor weekend idea really bothers me. I know there’s no reason for me to feel that way, and that I’m being a little irrational. And I’m not sure why. Maybe it bothers me that guys seem to think they need to get together and celebrate being single for a weekend. Or maybe it’s because I think it’s a little unfair. I won’t get a bachelorette weekend–my bridesmaids are still students, have or are having kids, or work at nonprofits, and they can’t afford to travel any more than they already are for the wedding. Or maybe it’s because I would have liked to get away to Florida for the weekend too. Yes, I know there aren’t supposed to be girls at a bachelor party (although apparently one is going), but it would have been nice to be invited. I could definitely use a weekend on the beach.

But I think the real reason I’m still upset now is that Jon knew that I didn’t like him going, and he went along with it anyway. Is marriage going to be like that?

So this must be the other side of engagement and wedding planning–the one that you don’t read about in bridal magazines and wedding blogs. I usually try to keep  my blog light and fun, because who wants to read someone whine and rant about the tough stuff? But wedding planning isn’t one great blend of colors and flowers, gifts, and food tastings. Behind the fun video chats with bridesmaids and the excitement of our friends and family, I’ve been confused, disappointed, and frustrated many times throughout this journey. It’s a LOT of work, and much of that work isn’t fun.

In the end, I know I’ll take the advice from Dr. Bleedingheart and get over it. And all that work, those disappointments, and the frustrations will pay off on April 30. It will, right?

I’ve been looking at tons of garden blogs for work (trying to get some publicity for one of our upcoming books), and I stumbled upon Garden Rant for the first time today.  And while it’s irreverently funny, I hardly expected to see marriage advice for “disappointed brides everywhere.”  After reading the post, I wasn’t disappointed at all.

According to the New York Times, a newlywed couple in New York is suing their florist for $400,000 for using the wrong color of flowers at their wedding. Dr. Bleedingheart, Garden Rant‘s version of Dear Abby, had plenty to say on the subject. Here’s an excerpt, but you can see more here:

Dear Disappointed Bride,

I know how hard you worked to come up with the perfect color scheme for your wedding, a day that you have no doubt been looking forward to for years.  And it sounds as though you made your wishes perfectly clear in the 200-250 emails you sent the florist. And lord knows, anyone who spends $27,000 on flowers is entitled to get what they want. But are you sure you want a lawsuit to remember your wedding by?  Is this really the best way to start a marriage?

If I could give one wedding present to every couple I saw walk down the aisle, it would be this:  the ability to overlook flaws, forgive mistakes, release grudges, let go of disappointment, and shrug off misfortune.  That may sound like more than one present, but really, it’s all part of the same package.  Let me explain.

You see, you have just agreed to spend the rest of your life with a human being.  And a human being is rather like a flower.  Beautiful at a distance, but get too close and you’ll start to see some flaws.  Crumpled petals.  Little bug bites in the leaves.  A disagreeable odor, perhaps.  Messy pollen dropping on your new tablecloth. (speaking of tablecloths, I checked your gift registry, and may I just say:  well done!  Who knew Vera Wang made shrimp servers?)   And all too soon, that flower fades, and you’re left with the dry, seedy reality.

Your husband will get it wrong all the time.  And so will you. In fact, if you stay married, I guarantee you many long decades of mistakes and misunderstandings.  That’s just part of the deal. So when he comes home with the kung pao chicken after you definitely asked for mu shu pork, you’ve got a choice to make.  You can have a fight, or you can have dinner.

Because in marriage, in life, in the garden, and in the flower shop, you’re not always going to get what you ordered.  When things go wrong, you can handle it with grace, or you can handle it with a lawsuit.

But honey, litigation won’t keep you warm at night.  Just a thought.

Sounds like pretty good advice, no?

Congrats to K&P…again!

February 25, 2010

It’s been a fun week in wedding blogs! First, Ms. Keylime and her beau entered a cutest-engagement-story contest, and they won!

Yep, they’re a pretty cute couple. You can read their engagement story from Morgan Gallo & Co. here.

And earlier this week, I was scrolling my Facebook news updates and saw this link posted by our photographer Cheyenne Schultz. Go ahead, take a look.

Yep, that’s Jon and me! A couple of our pinwheel photos made it onto an Alabaman wedding planner’s Web site. I have to say, it’s pretty weird seeing your photo on someone else’s blog! Cute website though. Apparently this pinwheels thing is taking off…I guess we better get to work making more of them for the ceremony! Good thing Jon enjoys making them with me. :) Although he sings that same “pinwheel, pinwheel, spinning around” song the Alabaman wedding planner wrote on her blog ad nauseam…I don’t know how much more I can take of that!

And that’s kind of awesome :)

So despite the card, the books, the surprise tickets that meant he would be suffering through La Danse (a documentary on the French Ballet) for three hours at the artsy theatre downtown, and the REALLY big gift he’s giving me/us (see my next post for that update), Jon did something super sweet this weekend (surprise, surprise). We aren’t one of those couples that’s really into all that romance stuff, but this really made me smile.

On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, he either brought me flowers or had them delivered. The first day he surprised me with roses that were a “happy first week of your new job” celebration. With the second day’s bouquet I received a card that said “I loves you,” and with the third day’s delivery came a card that said “I loves you more than yesterday.” The whole thing was sweet and thoughtful, and the sentiment behind the whole thing meant so much more than just the obligatory flowers for Valentine’s day. He’s kind of perfect. :)

He definitely beat my gift, which was a raspberry cake that he loves (which also happens to be our wedding cake flavor). He’s always so modest and says he’s not a creative gift giver, but I beg to differ. What do you ladies think?