Category Archives: Planning

Our Wedding- Getting Ready, The Ceremony and (Pre)Reception

Are you ready for some fun!

The day of our wedding was surprisingly calm.  I didn’t have a care in the world and just felt happiness.

{I admit, the night before I warned everyone that no one is to be stressed or freaking out on the big day or else they would be escorted back home!}

Here are a few shots of us getting ready! I put on my father-of-the-bride soundtrack and got to work!

Our civil ceremony was scheduled for 10:00AM. We arrived at 9:45am and the lobby was already filled with our family.  At this point, everything was starting to hit me.  I was excited yet a little nervous.

I remember thinking to myself, “I need to feel like a bride. Do I feel like a bride? What does a bride feel like?” Then I realized that I was being silly and to just be in the moment.

The actual ceremony lasted under five minutes! I was so happy to have my cousin Hannah there to be my stand in “Maid of Honor/Ring Bearer/Jr.Bridesmaid.” She even matched!

We had  a little time between the ceremony and lunch so we headed back to my house.

As you know, Ger’s family was unable to attend this ceremony so we were lucky enough to talk to all of them on skype.  They had a toast in our honor while we admired the beautiful flowers that they sent to us. I’m so happy that they were included on our special day.

After talking to Ger’s family, we opened up a few games of Wii Sports and did some bowling! How many people can say that!? It was nice to have that down time to feel a bit more normal.

all images from personal collection

Our morning was just beautiful, low key and perfect.  Everything I wanted!

It didn’t hurt to have champagne at 10:30 in the morning, either!

Come back next week for more details about our reception!


Filed under Celebrations, Elizabeth Anne Designs Features, Features, Inspiration, Life, Planning, Real Wedding, Winter

Happy Planning For Those Just Beginning!

I’ve been a busy bee at work with all of the newly engaged brides! I get so inspired just by hearing what other brides are inspired by. It really gets me excited!

So, to the brides & grooms that are just beginning, may you have the best of time and find inspiration in the unexpected places.

via decor 8

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Filed under DIY, Holidays, Inspiration, Planning, Winter

Is Your Wedding “Blog-Worthy?”

I have a confession to make.  Nine times out of ten, when I’m going through all of my favorite blogs, I don’t read the articles and just look at the pretty pictures.  I know, I know, I’m sure the posts are wonderful and intriguing but I’m more of a visual girl and it’s the actual photos that grab my attention.

There are those times where someone’s post stops me dead in my tracks and this was one of them. It put everything into perspective when it comes to planning a wedding.

I’m sure I’m not the only one that has a little voice in the back of their head saying “Oh, but would this get me featured in this or that blog” or “I need to think of something so different that it would impress other brides.”  I know, it’s terrible and I don’t want to admit it but sadly, it’s true.  It’s hard not to get wrapped up in wanting everything to be perfect and “blog-worthy.”

Meg’s post on A Practical Wedding really hit home.  It made me think of the real reason why we stress over all the details of a wedding.

I’ve gotten to a point where it just doesn’t matter.  We’ve been engaged for over a year and I’m past the hype of needing everything to be perfect and it feels amazing!

via A Practical Wedding

Does anyone else feel the same? Are you abandoning the need to have your wedding be “blog-worthy?”


Filed under Great Finds, Life, Planning

The Benefits of Being Legal in Pennslyvania

Getting legally married prior to our main wedding has a lot of benefits.

To start with, we now no longer have to be in Ireland a week prior to the wedding in order to register.  This means, more time for our honeymoon!  Additionally, I’ll be able to take my time in changing my last name and doing all of the necessary paperwork involved.

Among the many other reasons, the main benefit is that Ger will be able to apply for his Green Card.  By doing it in advance, Ger will be legally able to enter back into the U.S. after the wedding!

Since we decided to have the legal ceremony over Christmas, we’ve had to put everything together rather quickly.  I immediately called up the local courthouse to see exactly what we needed to do.

via Ruby Press

Like many other states, there is a (3) day waiting period from the time you apply to when you actually can pick up your license.  I was able to get this waived due to our short time in Pennsylvania. Normally I would have had to send a letter to the court-house requesting a waiver and our reason why.  Luckily for us, they were able to approve this over the phone!

We’ll both need to present photo identification, such as a driver’s license, state ID, or passport. Social Security numbers will be requested.

Another formality I was concerned about was residency and being able to apply.  I found out that they don’t require us to be current residents of PA to get our marriage license at the court-house. Score!

via Duryea

For the county that I’m from, the cost will range between $40-$75 and they only accept cash.  Not a bad cost for freedom!

We’ve decided to get married by a justice of the peace that is a family friend.  It will be great to have someone there that is a familiar face.

We’ll be driving back to Pennsylvania on the 23rd, getting our marriage license on the 24th and then have our ceremony on the 27th!  It’s going to be a quick process, especially with the holidays in-between.

Did your state’s marriage license regulations create a challenge for you or was it smooth sailing and stress free?

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Filed under Life, Planning

Do You Need Rings To Make It Legal?

I’m back! We are settling beautifully into our new home.  I am loving suburban life.  I feel much more at home and settled.

Now that moving and unpacking is behind us, it’s now time to think about our first wedding celebration.  It is only (3) weeks away!

First up is the wedding rings.  Originally I was against the exchanging of rings portion of the ceremony because I didn’t want to take away from the official wedding.  Boy did Etsy change my mind! They have the best alternative rings.  What a great way to have a memento of the big day.

Here are my favorites!

This first one was incredibly sweet.  I had been eying this for quite a while.  I love the unique look of this band.  It is simple yet very sweet.

via White Fly on Etsy

I typically am not a “birdie” fan but find this ring really cool.  I don’t know if this one says wedding in any way, but it’s still great.

via Ottobone on Etsy

This ring may be my favorite.  It is incredibly thin yet has that rustic look that I love.  It’s so delicate that I think I could get away with wearing it next to my engagement ring and real wedding band.

via Ottobone on Etsy

The next two rings are very similar to the above ring yet just a little larger.  It makes more a statement but I would probably have to wear it on the other hand.

via Shi Jewelry on Etsy

via Punk Bunny Designs on Etsy

Lastly is this beautiful ring necklace.  Maybe I should forgo the whole traditional band since it’s not a traditional wedding and wear the ring as a necklace.

via My Cellar Door on Etsy

I had no idea I would be spending so much time thinking about this!

For those having a civil ceremony previous to the traditional wedding, are you exchanging rings? If you are, are you worried that it will take away from the “real” ceremony?

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Filed under Accessories, Elizabeth Anne Designs Features, Etsy, Great Finds, Planning, Ring

Wrap Around My Shoulders

Since our civil wedding is coming up in about a month, I really need to get on the ball and make sure I have all of my ducks in a row! I’m sure it is going to be quite cold and thinking of getting a cute little wrap to go over my dress.  Just like this one!

via Weddingbee

I really like the look of these; a little more appropriate for my dress.

via Modern Romance

Via Cee Dada Koo

via 2 Swans’ Nest

via Reflectionsbyds

Has anyone else found any cute wraps or cardigans for wedding dresses? I’d love to look at more!

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Filed under Accessories, Elizabeth Anne Designs Features, Etsy, Great Finds, Planning, Winter

Life is What Happens When You are Busy Making (Wedding) Plans

You won’t believe all of the changes taking place in the Brennan/Power Household within the next month!

Peaches by Plums, Quote, Life, Plans

via In This Instance {source}

In the next two weeks we will be moving to the suburbs of Boston and finally living in a house with a little yard for Bradley.  I cannot wait! It’s happened a little sooner than expected but we are very excited about the move.

We’ve begun searching for a washer and dryer to buy for the house (I was shocked to see how expensive they were) as well as a car for us to get around in.  Not to mention settling in a new town, finding movers, gearing up for the Christmas season and finding out how to get back to Pennsylvania for the holidays with Brad!

The big secret however is that while we are back in my hometown, we will be getting legally married!  I wanted to keep it a secret and share with you after the big day but who was I kidding.  I can’t keep secrets!  Although the “real” wedding ceremony and reception is still in Ireland in August, this will also be very special to us as well.

To make the visa process as easy as possible, we learned that getting civilly married before traveling over to Ireland would be most ideal.  Originally we had thought of doing it after Ger graduated from Grad School however, we soon found out that it could take up to 5 months to process all of the papers.  This is when I had the bright idea of getting married over Christmas and to share the experience with all of my family that aren’t able to make it over to Ireland! Remember my dilemma? Problem solved, right?  I love that we are able to incorporate both of our families into this great celebration and I am even able to wear my first wedding dress!

I’ve always been the type that whenever I wanted to get a new hair style or a hair cut, I needed to do it right away.  It would drive me crazy to wait for days until my appointment and by then, I usually changed my mind anyway.  I admit, I can be quite impulsive at times.  I get so tired of planning and researching EVERYTHING.  Sometimes you just need to go for it, right?

Has anyone else been impulsive when it comes to life and wedding planning?

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Filed under advice, Events, Home, Life, Planning

What About Me?


via My Own Collection

If Bradley could talk, I’m sure this is what he would be asking me.  With all of the Wedding plans, it’s easy to forget about our little guy and what we plan on doing with him during the wedding.

We would love to have Bradley be apart of the big day.  It really wouldn’t be complete without him there however, it is turning out to be quite a challenge.  Although our venue is dog friendly, the hard part will be to get him over to Ireland.

Imagine Bradley in a little bow tie running around on our big day!  He would be such a gentleman.  However, this brings up another point, in the midst of all of the last minute details and events, would we really be able to give him all of the love an attention he needs? Would we be too distracted to watch after him? What about when it’s time to go on our honeymoon.  Does he stay in Ireland while we are in Japan?

One of the other side of the coin, could we really go 3+ weeks without this guy? Where in the world would he go? I’m sure the cost of puppy hotel’s aren’t cheap.  This plan doesn’t seem any better!

I need your help!  For those of you who have special guys at home, how are you incorporating them into your wedding plans?


Filed under advice, Life, Planning

“With every big decision along wedding lane, there is a small death. The end of possibilities.”

Back in June I read the most honest wedding post.  Eric over at beaucoup tells the story of how the search for his fiance’s wedding dress turned out to be more than a search for a wedding dress but a lesson about decisions.

Picture 1

Picture 2

Picture 4

via beaucoup {source}

Isn’t this the truth?  You think that wedding planning will be all fun all the time but when you least expect it, indecision, regret or frustration hits you.  It doesn’t seem fun anymore, it’s all too overwhelming.

Could this feeling be just because of stationary or flower petals? I think not.  As Eric so eloquently stated, “because this wasn’t actually about the dress. It was about loss. With every big decision along wedding lane, there is a small death. The end of possibilities.”


Filed under advice, Life, Planning

The Letters Make the Difference

I love the idea of using letters as wedding decor and as props!

During my visit to Pennsylvania, I learned that craft stores can be dangerous.  There are way too many cool ideas that I’ve seen that I would love to recreate for my wedding.

I love the idea of using letters to create sayings, personalize a wedding and even be used as props for awesome photos!

Remember Briana’s Dessert Table with “Oh Happy Day” in block letters? I LOVED this!! I think it really makes this table stand out in a simple yet elegant way.


via Elizabeth Anne Designs {source}


via Weddingbee {source}


via Ashley O’Dell Photography {source}

Here is my mom and brother modeling amazingly large letters! If I can fit them in our suitcase, I am definitely buying these!  I think if we painted these in bright colors  it would go brilliantly against the Irish Countryside.


Along the same lines of Briana, I am also going to have phrases in smaller letters around the room.


These letters will be on dowel rods and in varying heights to create dimension.

When planning a wedding, sometimes you need to delegate! Through grade school, my dad has been great at helping me with projects like these.  That’s why I knew this would be right up his alley!

Thanks, Dad!


Filed under Decor, DIY, Elizabeth Anne Designs Features, Great Finds, Inspiration, Planning