Wednesday, March 31, 2010

My Creations - Name Suggestions PLEASE

As most of you know, I enjoy making gifts and being creative.  I have been tossing around the idea of starting a small company focusing on making custom made products for brides, babies, household decorations, etc., but I am struggling to think of the perfect name.  Ryan likes "Sarah's Divine Designs"; "Betty's Boutique" - any and all suggestions are welcome!

Here are a few photos of my recent creations:

Boy's Cloth Diaper Burp Cloth
(Camo, Baseball, & Football)

Flower Girl Basket
It is a basket covered in white satin with purple and silver bows to match the ring bearer pillow, unity candle and wedding colors.

Ring Bearer Pillow
(White satin pillow with purple and silver ribbons - the wedding colors;  Jared helped me decorate it! More photos to come with the rings on it)

Save the Dates
They are 4" width x 8" length with a wallet sized photo, embossed "Save the Date", printed name, date, etc., stamped silver leaves, magnets on the back with directions and wedding website information.

Future Projects
I have grown up sewing and I am teaching myself how to quilt - pot holders, pillows, small objects to begin with.  In regards to sewing, I can make aprons, pillows, curtains, table runners, etc. More photos to come!

All in all, if you would like me to make anything for you or as a gift, please let me know.  Also, if you have any name suggestions, please please please comment! 

Adventures of Our First Year of Marriage: Emergency Room Experience

On Saturday, Ryan woke up really sick. He slept all day, couldn’t keep anything down and eventually became dehydrated. His wedding ring was extremely loose; it almost fell off which is crazy because it’s normally tight.

We decided that he needed to see a doctor, but being that it was a Saturday evening (8pm) and we were in Dahlgren, VA i.e. middle of nowhere, we had to go to the emergency room. Ahhh! I drove for 45 minutes down narrow, wooded, curvy back roads to Mercy Hospital in Fredericksburg. Looking back, I was super calm which is a good thing, but shocking to me because I tend to worry/panic about everything.

We got to the hospital in one piece, waited 15 minutes and saw a doctor. Ryan had to put a robe on!! Muhaha!!

For being in the emergency room, he was a goofy, happy guy! 
(He knew he would be getting fluid and finally feeling better)

He received a bag plus of fluid and some anti-nausea medicine which made his stomach feel better, made him freezing cold and didn't do much for his headache. He was still weak, but his thirst and appetite came back! All he wanted was a McDonald’s burger. The doctor told him he had to keep his diet very bland – crackers, apple sauce, Gatorade, etc. After he got some food in his body, his head began to feel better and he slept like a baby that night!

(He is so cute when he is sick)

While our experience was pretty amusing, I don't want to visit the ER anytime soon - wedding stories, how we met, starving together (when one of us isn't eating, the other tends to forget about food), being freezing cold, watching HGTV and just being goofy in the ER.  The nurses and doctors were extremely nice!

I told him that the next time we have to experience an admittance to the hospital, I sure hope it is when I am in labor!

House Hunting In Virginia Beach...

House hunting in Virginia Beach has been interesting. Our search revolved around school districts, distance from the Norfolk Navy base, 3+ bedrooms, 2+ bathrooms, 1,500+ sq. ft., a yard or community area and an open floor plan. Ryan and I looked at houses for months and we were excited to finally get to Virginia Beach to see some of the “beautiful” houses we found online. Well, when we went to see the homes, they were in “transitional” neighborhoods i.e. a few really nice houses built into traditionally rundown neighborhoods. Being that we wanted a safe neighborhood, we discounted all of the houses and areas we saw the first weekend.

After another week of research, we decided to increase of price range a bit and look at five more houses. We strongly considered two homes, but one was not an open floor plan and was in need of a new roof. There were five different floors on the first floor (wood, carpet, laminate, 2 types of ceramic) and the entire upstairs was carpeted in a royal blue and there was carpet in the master bathroom…yuck! This house was also at the top of our price range, so we would not have had as much extra money to invest in fixing up the house. The other home was in a great neighborhood on a golf course. It was advertised at a 3 bedroom house, but essentially it was a master bedroom, a room with French doors and a closet (i.e. an office in my opinion) and a loft with two closets. Only half of the upstairs loft area was finished, so we would have had to finish it, at a window and a bathroom to make this house safe for a family. The floor plan was exactly what I was looking for, but the limited amount of bedrooms, amount of work and danger of golf balls flying into our house and at future kiddos worked against the house. The workmanship was also a bit shoddy, crown molding falling off, loose wood flooring, etc.

On our drive home Ryan and I decided to look into townhomes because the yards we were getting were about the size of a townhome and had a ton of work. We found a few townhomes and on Tuesday, 03/30/10, we drove down to Virginia Beach again and looked at a few townhomes. We liked a 3 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom, open floor plan, 2 car garage townhome that was in a good neighborhood, great school district, near a great college and park, easy access to work and PA, so we decided to make an offer! Wish us luck!

Here is the floor plan of the house we decided to make an offer on.

Let me know what you think!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

20 Wedding Day Facts

I got this idea from a friend and thought it was a perfect way to document the little memories!  Thanks MJ!

Unique Wedding Day Facts:

1. I slept with my little sister, Bonnie, the night before my wedding.

2. My Dad saw my dress for the first time when I was completely dressed the morning of my wedding! (I got dressed on my parent’s side of the house in my parent’s bedroom)

3. I walked into Johann Pachelbell “Major in Canon D” because I got married in the Catholic Church and they do not look highly upon “Here Comes the Bride”

4. Ryan and his groomsmen (aside from Tom) all wore black suits as opposed to tuxes

5. I made my bouquet the morning of my wedding because I hated the one that the florist delivered. I was super calm and all my bridesmaids were in shock.

6. Something Old:

My Granny’s Rosary – My father’s mother was an extremely devout Catholic and prayed the rosary daily. She passed away January 2, 2009, so by carrying a rosary of hers, I felt her presence and believe that she, along with my grandpop and grampa, had the best seats in the house!

Diamond Earrings that Ryan gave to me for our first Christmas (2008) – It meant the world to him that I chose his earrings to wear of all my options. Knowing that it meant so much to him made it that much better for me. I love him!

7. Something New:

My Wedding Dress – It was one on the first 4 that I tried on (can’t remember if it was number 3 or 4) with my mother and Laura H at Country Bride & Gent in Northwales, PA.

My Shoes & my Veil – I purchased them in San Diego at Prevue. I sent photos to my mom and bridesmaids for approval before purchasing!

My Cape – My mom made me a beautiful, floor length cape with fur trimming and a matching stole for me to wear on my wedding day! It was perfect! (Bonnie also had a fur stole and a muff!)

8. Something Borrowed:

Ryan’s Grandma’s Handkerchief – every Nolan bride has carried it for over 60 years. It is handmade and absolutely beautiful! I was honored to carry it on my wedding day. I wrapped it around my flowers.

My Gramma’s Diamond Necklace – my mother’s father gave it to her mother when they were married. It was a simple and extremely elegant necklace that meant the world to my mom and gramma that I carry.

9. Something Blue:

My Bride Undies – I had white satin undies with “Bride” written in blue on them.

10. Ryan and I danced our first dance to “Soulmate” by Josh Turner.

11. My Dad and Ryan’s Mom surprised us with the songs they chose for us to have our Father-Daughter, Mother-Son Dances. My Dad chose “Turn Around” by Nanci Griffith and Ryan’s Mom chose “Blessed” by Elton John.

12. We sat at a sweetheart table with our bridal party at two round tables next to us.

13. Our DJ was my maid of Honors brother! He did an awesome job and worked really well with us!

14. I ordered the flowers for my centerpieces over the internet. They arrived at 10:30am the Thursday before the wedding and I cut 300 rose stems in my kitchen and put them into 5 gallon buckets in the basement.

15. The Friday before the wedding, Delia, Mom, Dad, Ryan, Jared, Bonnie, Peggy, Karin, Bruce, Johnnie and Don all went to the reception site and decorated – centerpieces on tables, favors on the table, card table, gift table, sweetheart table, etc.

16. Jamie, one of my bridesmaids, made Ryan a Boston Red Sox Groom’s Cake!

17. My organist’s appendix burst the Tuesday before my wedding (she was ok, but had to get emergency surgery), so I had to find a new organist. My cantor saved me and called upon her vocal coach to fill in.

18. Ryan and I drove away from the Church in his F-150 decorated with blue, white and red streamers, coca cola cans and a HOT PINK “Just Married” sign on the back!

19. We stayed our first night in the Hampton Inn Hotel and walked down to the lobby in the morning for a continental breakfast with all of our guests! It was perfect

20. We took the train from Lansdale to 30th Street Station to Penn Station and then hopped into a taxi and arrived at our honeymoon destination…Time Square!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

My Wedding Day Morning (Pre Church)

My alarm went off at 7:30am and anybody who knows me knows that I like the snooze button, so I hit the snooze for another 15 minutes! I got up, showered (without washing my hair), and did all my make-up in 30 minutes. I threw on Ryan's snap-up dress shirt and my "Malecki" sweats. My thinking was that it would be the last time I could truly wear my last name on my booty! And I was comfortable! I went over to my parents for a few minutes, grabbed my veil and was out the door for my 9am hair appointment with India! I was so cool, calm and collected that I shocked myself! While getting my hair done, I was singing to music, answering text messages and laughing at my curled, teased, and majorly sprayed hair! In the end, I LOVED my hair! It was ten times better than the trial run!

I got in my brother's car, drove home and was welcomed by my family, Jamie and Maureen! My mom had a huge brunch ready to eat and Maureen started on Bonnie's hair (which came out beautifully)! Delia, Sarah and Amy arrived shortly thereafter with make-up, curling irons and wrinkled dresses in toe! Jamie, Amy and I set up my clothing steamer for the first time and dewrinkled Amy's dress, Carl's shirt and all the girls’ shawls. We were all so calm! The flowers arrived and they were gorgeous, all but mine. I took one look at it and started making my own from the extra white Anastasia roses I had left over from the centerpieces. I put my Granny's rosary in it and wrapped Ryan's grandmother's handkerchief around the stems. It looked 100 times better and made me happy because I made something that I carried down the aisle!

Within the next 30 minutes, Delia shuffled me back to my parent's room to get dressed. She had me all tied up within 15 minutes, I put my veil in, got my shoes on and then started crying. My mom actually started it and then I started and then Amy lifted up her beautiful bridesmaid dress to reveal her black, granny panty girdle! Golly do I love her!

The photographer, Neil, arrived shortly thereafter and the photo shoot began! The living room was completely rearranged thanks to the wonderful help of Sarah's tall Carl! That was all pretty much a blur until we went outside and took beautiful snow photos in the driveway overlooking the creek and woods! Then it was into my little scion tC and off to the Church to get hitched! My dad drove, I was in the passenger seat and Bonnie and my mom were in the backseat. Carl drove the minivan with Delia, Sarah, Jamie, Amy and Maureen and Tom drove the Nissan with Kelly, Mike and Emily.
Once we got to the Church, I ran into the school gym to go to the bathroom and a little girl said, "Mommy, look a princess!" My heart melted! I went to the bathroom and then walked across the parking lot and hid out in the crying room so Ryan couldn't see me!  I was all smiles and walked down the aisle by my wonderful and loving father!

From Sunny San Diego to Snowy Philadelphia

The last month of my life has been amazing and extremely fast paced! On February 5th, Ryan, Jared and I packed up our lives in San Diego and headed east for snowiest winter in Philadelphia's history! Ryan drove the entire way with my car on a U-Haul trailer! He is simply amazing! It started pouring rain before we left San Diego (the County must have been crying knowing we were leaving!); it was icy across much of the route 40 (Old Highway 66) and we woke up to 6 inches of snow in Arkansas! Yikes! We decided to try to out run the storm as opposed to be stuck in a hotel for an extra three days! It was a success, but not without much caffeine, 3 books of Harry Potter on tape, an amazing road tripping kiddo, a talented and ever so handsome driver and a good intentioned panicked fiancé! All in all, we drove over 900 miles on the last day (from Arkansas to Chambersburg, PA) and made it safely home to my parents' house on the afternoon of the 9th!

Significant Memories From Our Trip Across Country!

Day One: 02/05/10
Rain on I-5 North
Hell's Angel Biker Dude passed us on I-5
Train with three lights in a triangle rolling through Arizona! It reminded us of the Polar Express!
Purple Baja Bug!
Snow in Arizona
We stayed in Williams, AZ at a Days Inn for $50 inclusive of tax!

Day Two: 02/06/10
Grand Canyon - 33 degrees F; drove through snow and ice
Traveled through Arizona and New Mexico
Sign "Do Not Pick Up Hitch Hikers - Prison Nearby"
Saw a HUGE fire on the side of the road
"Petrified Wood"
Short, toothless, giant-eared woman at truck stop in Williams
3 Old Mexicans leaning on an old gas station wall - straight out of a movie
Hippie Ice Cream & Coffee Rainbow painted bus
"Meteorites for Sale"
Painted Desert
Mustang Police Car
Stayed in Tu-Cum-Cari
Ryan and I stayed up and talked while Jared slept like a baby in the backseat!

Day Three: 02/07/10
Tucumcari, NM, Texas & Oklahoma
Foggy all day
Big Cross
Yukon = "Home of the Cattle Workers"
Passed a Vet with a F150 while hauling a car (12,000+ lbs.)
Toby Keith "I Love This Bar & Grill"
"Field of Dreams"
Stayed at Super 8 Motel
Bunch of deer on the side of the road

Day Four: 02/08/10
Arkansas to TN, Mississippi River
Woke up to 6" snow
Drove through nasty snow
Crazy redneck gas station had an overflowing gas pump...ours...
Jared fell in mud "trying to help"
22+ cars off the road because of snow/ice
TN Rest stop was closed with no signs...we all had to go so badly
Stopped in TN (right before WV) for dinner
Ryan and I stayed up until 2:30am driving
Every time we decided to stop, the off ramps were completely ice and we kept on trekking - the fear of ice keeps you awake
Drove all the way to Chambersburg, PA

Day Five: 02/09/10
We got up at 9 and ate breakfast
Almost got in an accident because of a police car
Watched a semi get pulled over
Missed our last exit...AHHH (because of the police car)
Dropped off the U-Haul
Got to my parents' house
Played in the snow
Paid florist for wedding flowers