Category Archives: the finds

New experiences…

Yesterday was the day of new things.  For those of you in a hurry, I’ll sum it up quickly:

1) Permanent hair removal

2) Became a model.

3) Got naked with a stranger.

For those of you who are going to stick around and read a little more, I’ll go into more detail…

Item one:  Permanent Hair Loss.  It’s embarassing to admit, but now that it’s over with, I feel much more secure.  Ever since I had started the birth control pill in college, I had an increasing amount of random hairs along my jaw line.  At first it was two…so I plucked them whenver they came up.  Then it was 1o, 100, and so on.  Plucking became part of my daily routine.  In fact, I often had “official pluck sessions” twice daily and always kept a pair of tweezers with me at all times.  Reflecting now, I also was hesitant to ever let anyone touch me under my chin…even my fiance.  It just got to be something I was used to.

A friend of mine recently started doing some lazer hair removal treatments with which she is very happy.  I considered it, but I just couldn’t justify the $700 it would take to do my chin when we are saving for our wedding.

Then I went in for a hair cut and eyebrow wax session a week ago, and the owner told me that I should consider electrolysis for permanent hair removal since I came in so frequently for waxing.  I went home and did my research.  Officially, the FDA will not bestow the title of “permanent hair loss” to lazer treatments or to electrolysis, but both have had fairly marketable success rates.  I went with electrolysis because my salon only charges $12 for 15 minutes of electrolysis which was more than enough time for my chin to be zapped.

The actual procedure was not too painful…think a little more intense than plucking…and at the end of 15 minutes, Kim had zapped 83 hairs from my chin.  She can see more that are under the skin surface, and when they surface, I can make another appointment with her.  I am reallllllly happy with the results.  I even let A touch me under my chin for the first time ever without being self-concious.  So awesome!

Because I had a new chin to show off, I went and got my picture taken with our photographer.  No really, I had to get some headshots to put on my profile at  I had a lot of fun with Stephen and Elaine from Giraffe Photography, and in the end, I had a ton of great pictures.  Here are some of my favorites:





The last one might be my favorite.  It says, “I am busy and important!  Go get me a un cafe!”

Thirdly, getting naked with a stranger.  I went for my very first spray tanning appointment.  Erin K. Seddon is so nice and made me feel so comfortable that I was nearly buck naked after meeting her for 10 minutes.  Along with spray tanning, she also is a make up artist who specializes in airbrush make up.  My tan turned out great, and I am for sure going to book her services for our wedding!

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Lab Partners: Vintage Wonderland

Something about these prints from Lab Partners featured today makes me want to don a scarf around my neck and carry a basket wherever I go.  I want to live in this world where everything is pastel and food groups have their own individual shops.






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Trend Watch: Parasols

After several hours of rearranging my blogroll yesterday, I finally found an organization that wasn’t too complicated.  I was trying to keep the list of blogs in each category fairly short.  If I had a category that seemed a little overwhelming in size, I found sub-categories to divide and conquer.

I ended up with the following categories:  brides who blog, general design afficianatos, do-it-yourselfers, flowers, foodies, health, inspiration, paper, photographers, planners, Quad City area sites, shops, and trends.  Whew.  I think the new organization helps my blog roll to be more of a resource rather than just a list that’s there.  I really do try to keep the best of the best on my blog roll, so if you’ve got a fantastic wedding or design related site that is not featured, please drop me a little note because I adore finding new blogs!

The most difficult distinction in my blogroll was between “inspiration” blogs and “trend” blogs.  I finally defined them as the following:

Inspiration – These are the websites, in my opinion, that are the source for wedding inspiration.  They often feature original ideas, inspiration boards, and seem to be on the up and up on the latest breaking wedding events.

Trends – These blogs are run by fantastic researchers who are totally in tune to who is doing what, and the resources that they cite are invaluable for other lovers of wedding research (such as myself).

Okay, enough blog mumbo jumbo… Here are some pretty things to look at for today:  Parasols!  They are so delicious!  The ones featured here today are from Raindrops and Bella Umbrella.  How much fun would it be to have these on hand in case of rain, or even to keep the sun out of your guests’ eyes.  These could be fantastic props for a bridal shoot as well!  Enjoy!

parasol 2parasol 11 bella

parasol rain drops toparasol 10 bella

parasol 4parasol 8 bella

parasol 5

parasol 9 bella

parasol 3


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A delicious discovery…

casanada ideiasHola!  Holla’!  Howdy!  Hi!

I stumbled upon a new blog to add to my repertoire of daily reads, and it’s a goooooooooood one!  It is Casando Ideias which losely translated means “marrying ideas”.  Beyond that, it’s simply busting at it’s blogging seams with gorgeous inspiration photography.  Commentary is listed in both Spanish and English, but the beauty of the collages and inspiration speaks to everyone on this planet.  Go check it out today!

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Boudoir not BEEEEWWWdoir!

boudoirOkay with the Sports Bra Extraveganza yesterday and with today being focused on boudoir, you are probably thinking that I am a total skeeze bag.  Not so!  I’m perfectly respectable!  I’m a teacher!  I’m a registered voter!  I love kittens!  But I also appreciate beautiful photography, and that is what today is about. 

As our engagement has progressed, I have started thinking more and more about unique things to do.  I stumbled upon several discussion posts and bloggings on a little something called “boudoir photography”.  (COMPLETE SIDE NOTE:  I am not French, so I will NOT pronounce this word as BOO-DWAH.  I will say BOO-DWAR as any respectable and stubborn American would.  I see this as a matter of principle as I also pronounce “armoire” as ARM-WAR and not ARM-WAH.  If you don’t agree then get out of my blog!  Kidding stay!  I only have 2.5 readers!!!)

At first when I heard about demur brides baring all for a photography shoot, I was shocked and my cheeks flushed.  But then I couldn’t stop thinking about it.  My FI would be totally shocked and awed if I  managed to pull this off.  It would be a totally unique gift that no one but him would ever know about.  And if I managed to lose the rest of the weight that I want, then it would capture my image when I’m in the best shape of my life.  Aaand there might be a little narcisism in that, but eh…

So I started doing some research.  There are a lot of awful, gross boudoir images out there.  Tacky, ill lit, skeezy boudoir.  Those make me cringe.  A local photographer who shall remain nameless has his boudoir photography out in the open for all to see on his website, and the women featured just look like sad, drunk, prostitutes.  I’m not sure if this is allowed, but here is one of the images from said photographer that will make you cringe too:


Seriously, there are SO many things wrong with this picture that I am not even going to call it “boudoir”.  It is BEEEEEEEEEEWDOIR.  This girl not only is standing awkwardly, but she looks totally uncomfortable.  The lighting is AWFUL, the set is AWFUL, the hair is AWFUL, the make-up is AWFUL, the lingerie is AWFUL (who is this girl, anyhoo?  some kind of boudoir superhero?).  Either way, this picture is so terrible.  If I paid good money for this, I’d be MORTIFIED!

Here is an example of a boudoir shot that is what I’m going for:


This photo is from photographer, pelaezphotos, and it’s beautiful!  Good lighting, good pose, good lingerie, good setting, good hair, good make-up, good photography.  Tasteful, not tacky.


This picture from Chris Birchall is also lovely!  And yes, I am totally considering doing some tasteful full nudes like this.  Think suggestive NOT spread eagle!

I also read somewhere that looking at covers of magazines like Maxim will give you good inspiration, so here are a couple Maxim shots that I think would make great settings/poses/lingerie/etc. for my boudoir shot:


There are a ton more, but my computer is being a bitch and is not letting me upload them.  Anyhoo, I think we can all see the difference between good boudoir and BEEEEEEWWWWdoir.  I am tentatively planning to do a photoshoot in early summer next year.  I may chicken out before then, but if not, I think this is going to be an amazing gift that both my fiance and myself will enjoy!

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The bracelet that broke me down…


Modern.  Clean-lined.  Simple.  Those words could pretty much sum up my style.  I sound so cool, right?  I knew it.  I practiced.  No actually, I developed that style because working for pier1 for several years brainwashed me.  Our store was the number one ranked in visual appeal in our region, and our manager, a finicky gaygaygay man, could spot an unrully tassle or thumbprinted water goblet at 100 paces.  As I moved into my very first “grown up” apartment during the time that I worked for pier1, I cultivated my collection of “stuff” and evolved into a very finicky straightstraightstraight girl. 

So when I moved in with my FI whose house was decorated by his ma (don’t even get me started), it literally broke the mold to merge our two households.  Seriously.  I broke things secretly so that they didn’t have to be displayed.  I had to gradually weed out doilies, flowers, and mismatched candles for the first 47 days that we lived together.  Now we’ve been living together for about a year and a half, and our collection of stuff has evolved with our relationship into a comfortable modern English countryhouse feel.  Is that an official style?  Now it is.  Art Deco, Early Americana, Comfortable Modern English Country Feel…too long?  Superfluous wordage is my trademark. 

Anyhoo, what’s my point?  The point is as we started to plan our wedding, my choices started off very modern, clean-lined, and simple.  I was looking at tulips and orchids and square cut glass vases.  I professed that I wanted little to no decoration throughout the wedding and on my person.  I didn’t even want a veil or any jewelry  or any detail on my dress so that my ring could stand out as my sole decoration. 

Yesterday, I met my clean-lined adversary in the bracelet pictured above.  I was sitting in my graduate class trying to pay attention to the current discussion entitled “What is a Document?” (Librarians are nerds, okay?), when my mind wandered and I started stalking the WeddingBee discussion board.  An interesting thread on Etsy vendors led me to Noaki, a woman who sells STUNNING vintage jewelry.  I saw the bracelet listing, and my heart did a little booty dance in my chest.  I knew I had to have it.  I haven’t wanted something so badly since I refused to leave the Playschool play house display at the local Toys R Us when I was three (Mom:  It’s time to go!  I’m leaving!  Me:  Okay, bye.)  I bought it immediately so that I wouldn’t throw a full blown temper tantrum in the middle of my grad class.  That would be embarassing. 

It’s frilly, it’s pretty, my FI’s mom would probably approve.  It’s my very first fancy-schmancy thing.  And I love it.  I haven’t even purchased my dress yet.  I will either find a dress that “goes” with this bracelet, or so help me God, I will be walking down the aisle commando!

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