Hello 2012

Last year I didn’t make any resolutions. I was wrapping my head around getting married and planning a wedding and felt like setting up any personal goals would be unneeded stress. However, I did manage to get some things done:

  • I started doing yoga and loved it. I’m still struggling with making a commitment to do it often, but it’s something I want to make a more regular part of my life. It’s one of the few things I do where I truly feel like I’m doing something really positive for myself. It makes me feel spiritually lighter and physically better. The week and morning of my wedding I used it to keep calm and carry on.
  • I finally got promoted from account coordinator. After starting at a job that took advantage of me and broke promises and then struggling to break into the industry I wanted to be in, this was the year where I made progress. I have a new goal of where I want to be in the near future, but it felt really good to finally be moving up instead of working to get into the industry.
  • I spent a lot of time with my friends. Not nearly enough, but with my bachelorette party, our wedding, and my college reunion it was really great. I’ve also finally hit that age where my friends are traveling for work or have enough money for a visit and I’m getting to see more people. It’s been really great.
  • I married A. After over 6 years together we promised to spend our lives together in front of our friends and family. It was an amazing day that I really don’t have the words to describe all it meant to me.
  • I went through something really scary with hurricane Irene attacking my hometown and came out of it with a lot of Vermont pride and respect for my family. I’ve never been more proud of my Dad than I have for all he did helping people. It helped me realize what a part of my heart belongs to Vermont and it always will.
  • I spent my first Christmas with A. Normally we spend it with our respective families, but since we spent a lot of time in Vermont for wedding prep and the wedding itself, we spent this Christmas together in New Orleans. I thought I might feel sad and bit left out not spending it with my family, but I felt really good spending it with A. and his family made me feel like a part of their’s.

I am really enjoying not planning a wedding and with my free time I want to work on some things this year:

  • Find a regular way to exercise . Figure out what I like, what I can afford, and commit to it.
  • Be a better friend. Last year was really great seeing everyone and this year I want to spend more time on my friends. Especially without a wedding to distract me.
  • Grow my career. I’m taking an editing class this spring and really working to challenge myself and grow in experience and title.
  • Breathe Easy. I want to let more things go and spend less time being upset or worrying about things.
  • Be happy. I want to spend as much time as I can enjoying my life with A.

(Nichole Drgan Photography 2011)

Happy 2012

DIY Wedding Venues: Pros & Cons

When we decided to get married in Vermont, I really wanted to have our wedding at a DIY location — somewhere we’d bring everything in. My hope was that we’d be able to save money through having it on someone’s land, where they’d let us have the location for free. Vermont is such a beautiful location, where you can get married in the middle of nowhere pretty easily and have all the decoration you need.

A. and I visited over Thanksgiving and were shown a few locations we could use for the wedding. We settled on this one, which was right up the road from my parent’s house, so it was really convenient, as well as beautiful.

Photos Courtesy of Susan Pelletier

There was a perfect place to set up a tent next to the pond, and the driveway was fairly long, so the road wasn’t visible. I was so excited to have such a major decision made, and such a gorgeous location to tie the knot in.

Then came the reality check. Having your wedding at a DIY location means you really have to Do It Yourself, all of it. As I said in a previous blog, I wasn’t able to get a wedding coordinator, so it’s all me. The costs and tasks started to really add up.

You need to bring in bathrooms if you’re having a wedding of more than just a few people (we’re planning on around 100 guests). You probably don’t want the standard blue port-a-pottys  for your event, and the nice ones were about 1k. Then you need a tent (in case it rains, is windy, etc.), tables, chairs (for ceremony and reception), tablecloths, silverware, glasses, plates, lighting, power, etc. With so many pieces that need to come together, it felt like it was going to be as expensive as going to an actual place that does weddings, and also, we’d need someone to coordinate the day before and the day of to make sure everything was set up.

With the majority of our guests coming in from out of town, I wanted to make sure they weren’t being asked to do too much to help the wedding take place. I wanted to be appreciative that they have to spend time and money coming to the wedding by keeping our requests for help to the minimum. I also didn’t want my Dad or Mom stuck with coordinating setup and takedown.  Looking at all the logistics and cost, I realized that while a DIY Vermont wedding would have been beautiful, it just wasn’t practical for us.

I shot a gun for the first time ever over Thanksgiving. I had my hunter’s license when I was 10 or 11, but never shot a gun. My Dad wanted me to start with a 22, but I weighted around 80-90lbs and figured it would knock me over so I declined. I’ve never hunted because I just don’t enjoy deer meat enough for me to want to kill one.
Shooting a gun was fun. Not the power of the gun going off, I actually found that scary, but the enjoyment of hitting a target. I used to shoot bow & arrow as a kid and always liked it and shooting a gun was less work and fast results. Plus you can’t say “blat! blat” it a gangster voice with a bow & arrow.
{photos ©JennaDays 2010}

I shot a gun for the first time ever over Thanksgiving. I had my hunter’s license when I was 10 or 11, but never shot a gun. My Dad wanted me to start with a 22, but I weighted around 80-90lbs and figured it would knock me over so I declined. I’ve never hunted because I just don’t enjoy deer meat enough for me to want to kill one.

Shooting a gun was fun. Not the power of the gun going off, I actually found that scary, but the enjoyment of hitting a target. I used to shoot bow & arrow as a kid and always liked it and shooting a gun was less work and fast results. Plus you can’t say “blat! blat” it a gangster voice with a bow & arrow.

{photos ©JennaDays 2010}

I’m Leaving on a Jet Plane

Monday night to spend thanksgiving in Vermont with my family (and these guys below). Already prepared to be incredibly pissed at dealing with new TSA stuff. Haven’t we learned anything in the last 10 years? NO DIGITAL NAKED PHOTOS, IT ONLY ENDS IN SHAME (by the way if you weren’t aware, they’ve already had a scanner leak complete with photos of the people’s actual faces: http://gizmodo.com/5690749/these-are-the-first-100-leaked-body-scans)