Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Registry: Part I

I don't know where to begin. I guess I'll start from the horrific traffic we faced going through Staten Island to get to NJ b/c the NY road people thought it was a good idea to close a lane on the bridge for construction during the busiest travel season ever.

We get to Pottery Barn in Red Bank, NJ, which is a pretty wealthy area, and totally excited, we walk in and get greeted by a ridiculously cheery blonde. I tell her that we want to register. She looks at me with a puzzled stare, pauses for a moment, and then tells us that she is new but she'll get someone to help us. Two minutes later, Amber (I dunno, she looked like an amber) goes and gets Melissa. Melissa, looking like a deer in the headlights, is even more confused. She gets Michele. (I have to add that I can't stand these names because they are both names of ex's of Mike's and so, of course, I have a prejudice to them. And furthermore, Michele should be spelled with two l's unless you're in France, which we are not. Yes, I know that I also shouldn't start a sentence with 'and', so, shut up!)

"You mean, you're here to buy something off a registry?" she inquires.
"No, actually, we want to you register."
"YOU want to register?" the Brainiac questions.
"That's what I said."

Apparently, fat people don't get married in this part of the world. At least, that was the consensus Mike and I came to after this little question and answer session.

So, we start in the back of the store with bedding. Totally not impressed, we move onto the bathroom section. Getting back to the whole being fat thing, we want bath sheets. Not for nothing, who is covered by a bath towel? Certainly, not me, and definitely not, Mr. V. But forgive me, I can't imagine anyone paying $48 per towel and I don't have the co-jones to put that on my registry.

Onto dishes. This is the real reason why we wanted to go to PB. We fell in love with the Sausalito Blanco Collection in square. It is simple and we can throw in colors if we want to, add monogram napkins and a table runner to match, dress it up and dress it down, but most importantly, it comes in a square shape which is what we loved so much and probably the only thing we both can agree on when it comes to plates and bowls. Ok. Mike scans it. He loves the scanner by the way. I think all men do because it's like a dream job to just scan it all and not pay.

Next, we see all these cute Christmas accessories that match our set. We add to the registry snowflake mugs and stirrers and of course, Christmas wine tags which will look great on our over sized wine glasses and brandy snifters, which I have to admit, we only put on because they look kewl. I have never drank brandy nor do I plan on even inviting anyone over that will drink brandy. (You're a fine girl-- sorry, I randomly break out into song.)

We leave PB with the conclusion that we are more of the Target kinda people. Don't get me wrong, Pottery Barn has some beautiful stuff, but I can't see our friends and relatives buying us a throw blanket I can get for a quarter the price. But we did want to keep our registry because we love the dishes and coordinating pieces. Since we're not doing formal China, it's okay to have an everyday set that's a little more valuable than most people would get. And to satisfy the old folks who insist on fine China, this set can be dressed up for the most formal of occasions-- well, sorta!

I go home and can't wait to show my mom. However, when I log on, I see that almost all of my items are unavailable online. I instantly email PB with my disappointing disposition. They send me a personalized response and suggest searching for the items as sets rather than individual as I had originally registered for them. And guess what, still I can't find my items. I respond back with this information and it turns out the square dishes can only be bought in the store. Total freakin bummer considering almost no one we know lives near a Pottery Barn.

They totally suck! And that's all I gotta say.

Target may have a stinky return policy, but you know what, we'll take our chances.

Tar-jey, here we come!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Holy Crap-- A Year to the Day

Am I freaking out? Not yet. Am I excited? Hellz yeah mofo! I am butt-crazy, super ridiculously psyched that in a little less than a year (try 365 days minus a few hours), I'll be the new Mrs. V. Woo hoo! I feel like quoting JBJ and saying 'We're half way there' because when we first started out on this journey, November 8, 2008 seemed so far away and now it's almost here. It's amazing how time flies. (I swear that I really do hate cliches.) I feel like I was just writing one of my first posts the other day at 13 months-- and that was more than 30 days ago!

Everyone said that eventually, time would fly and things would feel like they were happening faster than I could comprehend. And not to say that everything I heard is true, but it kinda is.

The cutest thing? My fiance who was once the biggest vajayjay when it came to publicly expressing his emotions actually changed his myspace name to One Year to the Day last night around 12 AM. Not that I live by what he puts on a website, I thought it was a total sign of his excitement and eagerness to get married.

What else has been going on? We took advantage of an awesome sale at Levitz and bought all of our furniture. Mike picked out a leather couch and we opted for two arm chairs instead of a love seat. I showed him the table I've been pining over Sunday news pull out after Sunday news pull out and he fell in love, too. (Not just b/c of it's beauty but also because it would make a good card table. Gotta love him!) And our bedroom set has that old look about it with dark wood and tall pieces, except the accent and metal knobs give it a modern twist. We opted for a king size so we can say 'see ya in the morning' and also, in case our fur baby or someday, child, has a bad dream, we'll still have plenty of room.

Next on the agenda is to register. I know it's early but my family wants to know what to get us for Christmas and being that we're moving into our new apartment about 11 months before the wedding, we're going to need some stuff. We're not going to go overboard but we'll put some fun and functional stuff on there and then about 6 months or so before the wedding, we'll redo it for the shower.

And that's about it. Stay posted for my thoughts on registering. I'm hoping it's as fun as it sounds! :)

Friday, November 2, 2007

First Comes Luck, then Comes Marriage

That's me with my ridiculously cheesy smile. I'm wearing a sample size 12 (yeah, my fat ass 18 is squeezed like a bracciole into a Maggie Sottero corset back 12!). I love the intricate work on top and the lace on the bottom. Taffeta is slimming as is the draped waist. Finally, Kelly, of Kelly's Creations on 18th Avenue, is custom making my veil for me. It's going to have a lace trim like a mantilla, with a third tier on it's own comb that will be of Cathedral length. I have to say, I'm going to look freakin awesome! The veil is almost as much as the dress. My mom loved it so much that she offered to pay for my veil. Woo hoo! Go Mommy!

I highly recommend going to Kelly. She's awesome and (no offense, Kell,)also Fabulous And Trying. She knew exactly which dress would look good on me. She had it picked out from the moment I told her I was coming in. I couldn't have been happier and giddier.

Yes, I became that little girl who dreamed of her wedding day. Blah blah blah. Actually, I was never that kinda kid. I always wanted to get married but my life didn't revolve around it until about March of 2007, but that's because every time I slam my hand down or bump into a door, I'm attacked by this rock that's on my finger. It's like a constant reminder. Oh yeah, and also the fact that my living room is now a newsstand with tons of magazines and clippings. Mike's PS2 is completely covered by a stack of mags. He doesn't even try to get to it anymore. Poor Tiger, he has no one to play him now. Maybe that will force us to get on a real golf course and not just one on TV.

As I started alluding to earlier, I never understood those chicks that bought bridal magazines before they were engaged. Mike's ex girlfriend had a whole box of them and not only did he see it, but she voluntarily showed him as a way of hinting towards a ring. I also never got those girls who had their entire bridal party picked out since they were twelve. Finding partners for the science fair was tough enough for me. And then there were the girly girls who had this whole picture of colors and flowers in mind. Again, it was difficult enough picking out a comforter for my bed to match my purple walls (bad decision by an eleven year old who finally got her own room).

To me, finding a loving man to marry was only a bonus to the successful life I already had. I'm a true woman of this century. I have an education and a career. Getting married is just the icing on the cake-- a very big and expensive cake that is! And although I am recently becoming more and more obsessed with my wedding, I know that in a year, it will all be done and I'll get back to being the terrific daughter, sister, teacher, writer, and friend that I always was meant to be. The only difference is that in twelve months and six days, I'll also be a wonderful wife. (Now, that really makes me smile.)

Getting married shouldn't be a goal. It isn't something to be accomplished or congratulated for. When I first announced my engagement, friends and family congratulated me. One of my co-workers, however, said 'good luck' rather than 'congratulations' and she explained that finding a man to marry me isn't something to be admired like winning a contest or completing a degree. Instead, you celebrate in other ways and you wish the couple the best of luck. Marriage and love, in general, is sometimes more about luck than it is about hard work. Let me explain this better.

First comes luck, then comes marriage. I use this analogy when I teach basic chemistry to my hardcore biology majors who refuse chem, although they take about as many credits in chemistry as they do in bio. So, as I was saying, I explain to the class that for every person, there is another who is waiting to meet them. I say that people are like molecules. Molecule A will meet with Molecule B and hopefully, form Molecule C. However, it's sometimes hard for Molecules A and B to meet. That's where an enzyme comes in. Enzymes are like the Match.com of chemistry. Enzymes don't speed up a reaction, they just help A and B meet quicker. Then, I go on about how we live in the big city and it's rare that we bump into our partner, even if they take the same exact train as us at the same moment we do. It's an analogy that goes on and on and is very useful in explaining how these helpful little proteins work in our bodies. Like this, I explain that we can't rely on luck in the body, and so, that's why we need enzymes.

More so, I'm using it now to show how lucky someone is when they meet the right one. Think about all the people you know and all the people you dated until you found 'the one'. It's amazing how long it took you or maybe, how long it's taking you. When you finally do meet him or her, you then start thinking about all the little steps you took before them or all the major life changes that went on before they were in your life. You start thinking things like 'right place, right time' or 'how did we never meet before' or 'what if we went to high school together' and so on and so on.

I'll use myself as an example. I was going to Rutgers in Newark, NJ and working on my PhD. That was an absolute disaster and I left after just one term. I was miserable and for about a year, I questioned myself constantly as to what the greater purpose was for me failing out. I always believed that everything happens for a reason. Well, what was my reason? It just so happens that when I returned back to Brooklyn, I started going out more with my friends. Yeah, I'd meet guys here and there, but nothing really special ever came out of it except for very comical stories. Finally, I met Mike through a friend who was meeting him online. I did her the favor of going with her to meet him.

The twist is that he is from New Jersey. So, I had to come back to Brooklyn to meet a guy from New Jersey?! How nuts is that? Okay, back to luck. It wasn't the first meeting that I stole Mike away. Actually, it was the second time I was dragged out to hangout with him. The night before, my wallet and my friend's wallet were stolen. (Bad luck!) Yet, she still managed to convince me to go to Atlantic City with her, Mike and his friend, Rob. It was pretty much against my will. She had a miserable time and I had fun. I was playing roulette and with the only twenty bucks I had in my pocket (remember, my wallet was stolen and it was a weekend so I couldn't even go to a teller to take out cash), I won about three hundred bucks. I was LUCKY. When I walked past Mike and Rob, who were hitting like crazy on Black Jack, Mike asked me how much I won. I was like 'I dunno' and then he helped me count my chips. It was then that he realized how cute I was and that's when I started flirting with him.

Disclaimer: No friends were hurt in the incidents described above. In other words, she didn't like him anyway. I even tried to convince her how great a guy he was! Go figure.

So, there you have it. Had I not failed out of grad school, I'd never hangout with my drinking buddy. I wouldn't be with her when she met Mike. I wouldn't have gone to Atlantic City with them, and certainly, I wouldn't have won all that money playing roulette which in turn led Mike to counting my chips and realizing how cute I was!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Funny thing about Brides-to-Be: A Comparison of On and Offline Sposas

Online, everyone loves each other and is happy to share their triumphs and flaws and eager to boost the other with compliments. In a store or bridal shop, it's cut throat, who looks better, I want that and rich bitch.

Brides use funny abbreviations online. BM = bridesmaid. Fi = fiance. DH = dear husband. DOC = day of coordinator. In the real world, BM = taking a sh*t. Fi = how much you have to pay. DH = first two letters of a delivery service. DOC = ahhh, what's up Doc?

Things are peachy and rosy. Brown and pink is the perfect color combo. Your photographer is the best and you tell everyone about her. Your wedding reception gave you the best deal. All online. In reality, things are stressful and your in-laws are annoying. You hate brown and pink makes you cringe. Your photographer is ripping you off and your hall is no better at $150 a head without a Viennese table or valet parking.

Online, you're open and honest. Everyone knows what's in your savings, how great your fiance is in bed, what you will wear on your wedding night, what your b-pics look like, and how you sabotaged your future sister in law by putting her in a dress that makes her hips look bigger than yours. Of course, in real life, you'd think someone was rude for asking you how much everything costs, you hide your assets, no one knows what goes on between the sheets, and you tell your future sis that she looks amazing in clingy silk fuscia.

Oh... how great wedding planning online makes us feel!

13 Months

So, the other night I was on my usual wedding websites and I saw a girl who is about nineteen months from her wedding day and I thought, 'Wow, this girl has tons of time!'And then I realized that it was us back in March who were 19 months out and now we've hit lucky number 13! Excitedly, I looked at the countdown on my phone and saw that we're also below the 400 day mark. (Yeah, I know, I should have known this by adding a year and a month but I'm not that swift. We all know this.)

At this point in my planning, I'm starting to realize what everyone told me was true. It will all fly by so quickly. I couldn't understand it then. When I would tell people I'm engaged and they'd ask me who I was using for my DJ, I'd say that I had plenty of time. Or when someone asked me about my dress, I'd say that I have at least six months until I even start looking. And I am still trying to hold off. Another ten pounds and I'm hitting the stores for real this time. I keep saying that. The first fourteen pounds made the dresses look great on me. Now, I want another ten and then we're talking dresses. But it has to be soon because now we're coming down to crunch time and I can no longer say we have time.

Well, I guess that's not totally true. Whenever I read a new bridal mag, I always see their little checklist/countdown thingy. Usually, it says that you should start booking vendors at nine months. Nine months? Are these people nuts? Even at a year, we found that some vendors were all ready booked. It's unreal how quickly people start locking up the good guys and gals.

We planned early. Thank God! We had our hall booked about three weeks after we got engaged. Our Church was actually booked before I even had the ring on my finger (yeah, we knew we wanted to get married for a long time-- probably from our first date). Over the summer, we locked up a photographer and DJ, and pretty soon, we'll send a deposit to our videographer. All that is left are the limos, florist, tuxes, girls' bridesmaid dresses, my gown, making the favors, creating the Church programs, the reception dinner menu, the seating cards, the table numbers, and possibly, our cake topper unless we find one we like that we register for. Oh, and also, we need to decide where we will have our rehearsal dinner and honeymoon. Then, we have to register and also, buy the rings. Okay, so, maybe I'm really not that far ahead after all.

It's scary and all so real and true now. But I can't say that I am stressed. I love this time in my life. I like the planning. I like hoping that I'll hit the lotto. I'm glad that I finally have a reason to lose weight. I get kicks from seeing how much is in my savings account. But most of all, I love when I send my fiance a message that we're so many odd days out and he corrects me. That goes to show that he's just as excited as me-- and also counting down the days til we're Mr. and Mrs. V!

Monday, October 1, 2007

Fried Oreos and Wo-Hop

It's always about food! Why is it always about food? No matter where we are or what we are doing, the conversation somehow becomes dietary based and often, our diets go downhill from there. Why do we torture ourselves? We spend hours and hours going over our menu for a day on which we probably won't eat and that we are basically starving ourselves for a year for in order to look good. Sorry, long sentence, but you get the point!

If I had the money, one of the things I'd add to my wedding is a feast stand outside my reception hall. Yes, I said it! I want a mini feast. Not a feast like a big meal, but like a traditional Italian fair or festival. To me, that would be the 18th Avenue feast in Brooklyn, but I'm sure more people can relate to the San Gennaro Feast in Little Italy. I want a sausage and peppers cart, a fried oreo and zeopoli fryer going, and I want everyone going home with those little greasy white bags that just scream cholesterol.

If my E.l.f. (Everloving Fiance) had it his way, there would be a table with Wo-Hop dumplings during the cocktail hour. Chung, himself, would be there serving. How pathetic is it when you know the name of the guy who runs Wo-Hop! I guess that's because we're considered regulars. As a matter of fact, Chung's asked us for our wedding pics so we can be added to the Wo-Hop wall of fame. Pretty groovy is you ask me.

It's All About Me!

It's my day and it will soon be my year. Today marks 1 year, 1 month and seven days until my wedding. But that doesn't mean I have to wait a whole year and then some to make it all about me. After all, if this blog wasn't about me, then who would it be about?

What's in a name? Ok, I'm not looking to use the cliche or even ponder a pun, but I thought it would be funny to tell my bridal blunders through the voice of a Fat bride-- no, I'm not referring to my weight-- a fat bride is one that is fabulous and trying (F.A.T.). Oh yeah, and of course, I am part of that percentage of brides that can't take advantage of a sample sale, that would look like a braciole in a corset without a panel, and of course, would look more like Ursula than Ariel in a mermaid gown. But does it stop me? Not for a minute.

To be honest, I thought being fat and a future bride would really suck. I dreaded the day I'd go dress shopping only to have everyone staring at my ass because the back didn't close or have a fitter look at me and say, 'sorry, we don't sell to your kind here' because after all, being fat is like being an outcast in the world of beautiful brides. But actually, it wasn't so bad. As a matter of fact, when I finally had enough co-jones to go dress shopping, I picked a place that I had heard had samples in all sizes. In fact, there were about ten dresses that I could have tried on (even though I stuck to only six; the other four were absolutely hideous and just screamed 'tent-sized bride')and it was a good feeling when a couple of them were too big and had to be pulled tighter. Also, I realized that bridal gowns are great! They hide all my bad parts and accent my good assets. Jeez, I wish I could be a bride everyday.

And my struggling weight all these years was worth it to hear the lady who was helping me try on dresses say, "There's no reason for you girls to starvate yourself to look good on your wedding day." I love when people make up their own versions of a word!

Although I haven't found 'the one' yet, I know I will and I know that it won't have to be special made or ordered in husky size (yes, my elementary school actually had husky size jumpers for the chubbies). No, instead, my dress will be made for me, by the dress company, in my size and without any kind of strange or scary labelling. In that one day I learned that a fat bride can be an absolutely hot bride.

If you look around, you'll see that there are a lot of fat married people. Sure, many of them probably gained weight post-nuptuals but I'm sure there were some chubby chasers who took the next step as well as fatty couples who didn't forbid fried foods during the engagement. I'm sure there are guys who got down on one knee and couldn't get back up. For some men, it's easier to tie the knot than it is to tie their shoes-- and if that is the case, then why can't fat girls be fat brides?

Throughout the next year, I vow to provide other Fabulous and Trying brides with tips and advice as well as laughs and smirks through my embarrassing moments as well as my personal triumphs. Nothing will remain a secret nor will anything be too telling to reveal. So my girls, and guys, if you choose, stay posted because you are guaranteed to enjoy this.