Wedding Wednesday -Reception Venue

Last Wedding Wednesday I shared a few pictures of our church, and now it's time to share our reception hall. As you know from my last post- we were really excited to find a church and hall just a couple miles down the road from each other. We really didn't want that huge gap of time between ceremony and reception and this helped out a lot! In fact, I'm pretty sure we almost beat some of our guests to the reception we got there so quickly!

Our hall was perfect for us-- intimate and small, but definitely large enough to accomodate all of our invited guests (275). The venue is just the one ballroom which was great! I've been to weddings before that you can hear the prom next door bumping, or where random strangers try to crash. Not gonna' happen here ;)
The outside of our hall-- nothing fancy, but not important to us.
We got all our pictures taken care of at the church!

Here are a few pictures from the day before while we were setting up before the rehearsal.
My sister and I setting up
Checking out how it looked with the lights dimmed
Orange everyyyyywhere :)
And if you look closely- you just might see, J's grandma and my mom practicing the Cupid Shuffle.

Overall we were VERY happy with our venue. Definitely affordable, their food was FANTASTIC and they included just about everything you could need for a wedding reception. I wasn't all about making centerpieces and going super fancy-schmancy on small details, so it was a perfect place for us. We planned our wedding 100% Pinterest free, so I like that we chose things we liked, not just things that were trendy. Plus, from the time we actually booked the venue, they got lots of upgrades like a brand new dance floor, more options in sash colors, etc. that we got to enjoy for our wedding with the "old" prices. Score!

4 years together

February 28, 2008 we became an official couple. Hard to believe that has been FOUR years ago.

Today also marks 9 months of marriage :) Ahh, I'm such a sap when it comes to special dates!
1.5 years
2 years

2.5 years

3 years

3.5 years

4 years :)

Love my man!!!
And on another note-- I rocked the red skinnies over the weekend for the first time.

I apologize for the crappy picture-- I may or may not have been in Restoration Hardware and there were lots of people around so I was going stealth mode for the pic. Hey- we don't have a full length mirror ANYWHERE in our house. Girls gotta' do what a girl's gotta do, am I right?! :)


Wedding Recap - Church Selection!

The church decision came in a weird way. Most of my family and most of his family lived about 45-60 minutes from each other and we were hoping to find some middle ground. We found a simple reception hall at a great price first and then the hunt came for a church. Jared and I had both grown up in churches we no longer attended, and had just found a church we both liked but weren't quite ready to call "home" yet. One day after we'd stopped into the reception hall to check it out, we just went driving around. Seriously. We looked for parks, churches, anything in the area that might work.
And low and behold, we almost passed this church up because it came outta' nowhere... just 2 miles down the road from our reception hall! It was a beautiful, older church that looked just about the right size so we wandered in. Yep, we wandered into a random church on a Saturday afternoon. A few women were in the building, setting up for what looked like a baby shower and they were SO nice and answered our questions. They didn't act like we were crazy either for wandering in and saying... "Uh, yeah, we're trying to find a church to get married in. Do you guys rent yours?" Whew! ;)

We were SO excited to find this church. It was beautiful inside and out-- plus there was even a covered bridge out back which proved to be an AMAZING backdrop for pictures!!

The church was BEAUTIFUL and was the perfect central location for everyone!

Fill in the Blank Friday!

Happpppppy, HAPPY Friday blog world! This week has crawled like a slug and I have a 3-day weekend coming up. Could NOT be happier :)

I'm linking up over here again for FITB Friday!!

1.  The love of my life is   My husband, Jared. :)

2.   Falling in love is   easy when you've met the right person. It comes naturally and beautifully.

3.  Marriage is   harder than I'd imagined, but a million percent worth it because it's more wonderful that I'd imagined too!

4. The longest relationship I've ever had was  ours now! We've been together almost 4 years.

5. The key to a good relationship is  constant communication & putting God first in the relationship.

6. I feel loved when   someone shows me that they were thinking about me... whether it's a quick email to say they missed me, a random card in the mail, an act of kindness they knew would help me in a time of need... I could go on forever, but in essence- it's the little things.

7.  My favorite quote about love is   1 Corinthians 13:4-7 (look it up!) ;)

Valentine's Day -Round *2*

If you read my last post- you saw that J and I celebrated Valentine's Day over the weekend :) So we kept actual Vday low-key. I cooked dinner (turned out awesome-- much to my surprise!!!), we exchanged cards (how fun is it to shop in the husband/wife section for the first time?!) then just cuddled up with a movie & some Valentine's pretzel buttons!

On a side note- I'm amazed at how quickly this blog has grown.
My next goal is to reach
before my birthday in April!! I hope I make it-- I'd love to do a fun giveaway!

Erin :)

Love is in the Air

Jared & I decided to celebrate our Valentine's Day this weekend and we had a BLAST! Since we both work all day Tuesday, we figured we'd rather go out on the town Saturday, and have a quiet night at home on VDay! (I'll be attempting making dinner for him!)

I actually PAINTED my nails for the first time in months--- it had seriously been forever. I wish I could always have them painted nicely, but I just can't keep up with it! I did a fun, bold red for Valentine's Day though and I'm loving 'em!

Before heading out!
 (WOW- I'm missing that Mexico tan more and more every picture I take!) ;)

I knew we had reservations somewhere (a surprise by Jared!), but that we planned to do a little shopping first. We went to a Half-Price books, and I tried my best to limit my purchases… but it's TOUGH!! I love to read!

I now definitely have my next few books for my 12 in '12 goals!! :)
After book shopping and some browsing at Marshalls ((ps- I bought red skinny's and I am terrified/thrilled to wear them for the first time!!)) it was time to head to the restaurant!

Carlo & Johnny's to be exact! I was PUMPED-- a super nice place we'd never been to and is supposed to have some of THE best steaks in town. It actually used to be a casino & mafia hang out so the whole place has a very 'old Hollywood' feel. SO much fun!
Tasty basket of bread & MONOGRAMMED butter
A steak & grilled asparagus that did NOT disappoint!
And we couldn't pass up a light dessert of fresh fruit & the best-tasting whipped cream I'd ever had!!

Seriously a GREAT night! The place was fun and romantic at the same time, and we love trying new restaurants! I'm looking forward to Vday round 2 on Tuesday. I'm excited about making dinner, a light dessert (both of us are dieting!) and giving him a gift!

I'd love to hear how you'll spend your Vday! With a significant other? Friends? Not celebrating at all? Anti-Vday? ;) Hope everyone had a great weekend! I'm off to tune into the Grammys for awhile!


I'm Fillin' in the Blank Friday! :)

Happy FRIDAY, all! TGIF is all I can think about today-- especially considering I totally thought it was Friday, yesterday. What a bummer that was! ;)

I'm linking up with sweet Lauren today-- be sure to check out her FITB Friday here & linkup if you want to join in the fun!

1. I started my blog because: everyone is doing it! ;) I had a handful of girls from college who started blogs and I always enjoyed reading along with theirs as a way of keeping in touch. I also have always loved to write, but hadn't done much of it and thought this would be a great way to get back into the habit!

2. One thing I LOVE seeing on other blogs:  are real, honest stories that sometimes make you laugh, sometimes make you cry, and sometimes make you think. I love to hear honesty in other's writing.

3. Something I like about blogging: is the community and friendship that you see everywhere! I've had so many bloggers offer up great advice about blogging from the get-go! Many thanks to those ladies ;)

4. A favorite blog post of mine is probably: our love story, it was so fun to retell it and share pictures of our relationship through the years (and also see how much has changed in that time!!)

5. Something my friends in real life know about me that I've never mentioned on my blog is: that I'm weird. Or maybe I don't have to mention it on my blog for you to pick up on that- but my 'real-life' friends definitely know :) I burst out into song/dance at any given moment, I talk in weird accents sometimes because I crack myself up, I don't really like chocolate unless it's combined with peanut butter, I love sports just as much as I love shopping, etc!

6. My new favorite blogs to read are: Recently Roached, The Sweet Life, Teach.Run.Love, Married With a Pup, Enjoying the Small Things, Peas & Crayons -- I could go on all day, there are so many!!

7. Some things I tend to avoid doing on my blog are: oversharing (there is a fine line, people!) and venting-- there is a time and place for everything though so I just try to keep everything positive & in perspective ;)

Tomorrow I'm going to attempt my first 'freezer cooking' and will be sure to keep you posted on how it goes!! Then J has a Valentine's date planned for us Saturday night-- it's a surprise! -- so I'm excited about that. Hope everyone has a FANTASTIC Friday & weekend!

Engagement Pictures -Wedding Wednesday

These were taken in November of 2010, a couple months after our engagement. We didn't purchase the CD of all the high-res pics, just had some prints made, so this is as good as it's gonna get ;) All our engagement, as well as wedding pictures were done by the FABULOUS Michelle Bronstrop. Check out her photography at MAB Photos. These are just a handful of the MANY, MANY great shots she took that day!

fall engagement photo

fall engagement photo

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fall engagement photo

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The "real" us ;)
fall engagement photo

fall engagement photo
This one's hanging in our house :)
fall engagement photo

fall engagement photo
Definitely J's favorite part of the session!
fall engagement photo

fall engagement photo

football engagement photo

football engagement photo

fall engagement photo

fall engagement photo

Hope you enjoyed looking at them as much I enjoyed sharing them with you :) Isn't it crazy how time flies? These pictures were taken over a year ago, but it definitely doesn't seem that long ago! We did have a short(er) engagement than many people -9 months- so I guess the time really DID go quickly!

Stay tuned for more wedding planning details next Wedding Wednesday!!

12 in '12 Check-In

Happy Thursday, all! I plan on blogging at the start of every month about where I am on my 12 in '12 goals. If you didn't see the original post you can find it here :) Keep me accountable, ladies!!

In January I blogged 12 times. Around 16 a month would get me to my goal of 200 on the year, but I think for my first consistent month of blogging it wasn't too bad of a start ;) I also don't ever want to feel like I'm posting just to post.. I want to have something to say!

I only lost a few pounds this month, but I suppose it's better than nothing. The first few weeks of the year I was definitely slacking. Now that hubby and I are cooking healthier and I'm doing Zumba + running + Wii fit, I feel like I'm headed in the right direction. I've also started setting weekly weight goals I hope to meet! Next weigh in-- Monday!

J and I also signed up for our first 5k in a LONG time. It's March 10 so only about another 5 weeks to get ready. I can't wait! If you've never raced before, I encourage you to try one out… they are seriously SO much fun! Here's a great link to find races near you!

I read 4 books last month (OK- I finished the 4th one on February 1) = On target for 50 on the year! Can't wait to start my next one!!

Savings account--- Eh. It could be better, but I'll leave it at that ;)

Slowly, but surely our home is becoming more organized. We tackled a lot of clutter in our 2 extra bedrooms and I also got some baskets/organizing shelves for underneath our bathroom sink…. It's made a HUGE difference! I also have a gift card to the Container Store I'm hoping to use this weekend :) :) Nothing makes me happier than containers….. .nerd.alert.
I really can't describe the butterflies I get when I see this picture!!! 
No new cities yet, but a couple trips planned later in the year! Most of my other things are little more abstract, but I'm definitely trying to take more time to show kindness: to strangers and to friends. Just small acts here and there could make the world of difference. 

I challenge you to randomly do something nice this week! :)