Monday, August 22, 2011

Merhaba Istanbul

As my sister says, "Who honeymoon's in Turkey!? You're supposed to go to Hawaii or the Bahamas--you're so weird."

Our reason for choosing Turkey (Istanbul, mainly) is because we wanted to go somewhere abroad, and a mentor/friend from the college Tommie and I attended owns a place where we can stay. It is funny though how life leads you down certain strange paths.
As a person who has always loved words, particularly words that are fun to say, I remember learning about Constantinople in elementary school and thinking I'd like to go there someday because it sounds cool. This was long before I understood that Constantinople is modern Istanbul; long before I knew Tommie, or what college I'd attend, and long before we knew a woman who owns a house in "Constantinople."
Just like planning a cross-country road trip to San Diego for class in 8th grade, six years before my family moved there, maybe I sensed that someday I'd have an opportunity to travel to Turkey. Or, like my sister says, maybe we're just weird. Either way, we're about to embark on an interesting journey. Here goes!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Wedding Vendors

When Tommie and I first got engaged, we didn't have a wedding destination in mind. We took road trips far north, researched places online in the far south, and then we came across everything we were looking for in the Seacoast area of New Hampshire.

Tommie's dad, Don Watson, was our main photographer for the day and captured a lot of great shots! Several of his photos appear below.

Our welcome dinner took place on the enclosed deck at Warren's Lobster House in Kittery, ME. It was a casual, fun place to meet up as everyone arrived and enjoyed some New England seafood as well as the giant salad bar.

We chose to have our ceremony in the beautiful and intimate Fuller Gardens in Northampton, NH; perfect for a smallish wedding of up to 70 people.
Our titanium wedding bands were made by Minter & Richter Designs, Boston-based artists I came across on
Five-minutes down the road from the gardens in Hampton, NH is The Victoria Inn which has a cute covered pavilion in back. This meant I didn't have to rent an expensive, ugly tent--score! My family also had a place to crash at the Inn.
I ordered my dress online from a knock-off shop called Maryann Bridal to save money, and then had it fixed up at Alterations by Rosa in Salem, Mass. because she had fantastic reviews on
I was lucky enough to stumble upon my awesome day-of planner, JennieDee of Diamond and Pearl Affairs, on Craigslist. With the help of her planning friend, Tracy, they kept the whole day running smoothly so I could enjoy it.

Our reception food came from our favorite East Coast Mexican restaurant, Loco Coco's in Kittery, ME. They don't offer catering services, but they worked with us to deliver buffet pans full of flavorful food to our party. BML Catering based in Manchester, NH helped staff the evening.

Wild Orchid Baking Company in Northampton, NH made the cute lemon and vanilla cupcakes.
Lamie's Inn and Old Salt Restaurant provided lodging for Tommie's family and had an impressive and delicious Sunday brunch that many of us attended.

There are a lot of decisions to make when it comes to planning your own wedding. This process was daunting for two Libras, but we made it through and were so pleased with how it all turned out.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

CSA Soup

Sometimes we get so many vegetables from our CSA we don't know what to do with them. Now that we have a dutch oven, we decided to throw them all into a garden soup, then we took pictures because we thought our Asian bowls and spoons were cute.
We used carrots, cabbage, onions, scallions, garlic, pinto beans, potatoes, egg noodles, and chicken stock (we're not used to being completely vegetarian).

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Our Wedding

images from

I'm happy to report wedding day success!

All the planning, organizing, and countless hours on Craigslist and Ebay paid off in what amounted to a marriage celebration that truly felt like a reflection of "us." It was real, it was cute, it was natural, it was with our closet friends and family who have been with us for many years. There were no catastrophes, no major meltdowns, and on top of that, it was a beautifully warm and sunny day! New England weather finally came through! Since we planned the bulk of this wedding ourselves, I totally think we earned that.

The gardens were absolutely beautiful. Tommie's Dad took some fantastic shots (as exhibited in this blog), and our second shooter was very creative and patient as she followed me around the garden making me pose all over the place for pictures. ..ok, so maybe the truth is she had to basically ask me to stop posing.

Even Maya (the dog of honor) and all the kids were attentive and well-behaved. I was very proud. The reception that followed went smoothly with the help of our awesome day-of planner. We got to eat our favorite east coast Mexican food, catch up with old friends, and dance (though Tommie could use some new dance moves). There was fun, there was laughter, and of course, a lot of pictures to remember it all.

I'll post more details about our vendors soon for anyone considering a wedding in New Hampshire or the surrounding area.