Sunday, May 31, 2009

Our newest vendor!

There is a great debate that rages in the wedding madness ... to DJ? OR to band?

Me, I am a fan of DJs. For many reasons. The music sounds right (cause its not a cover!), they're cheaper, take up less space ... oh yeh and have I mentioned that the music sounds right? 

BUT ... and this is one giant ass in the world of 'buts' ... there are problems with my DJ lovin. First of all there is something to be said for live music, it pumps everyone up, sends out perky energy vibes, and hopefully gets everybody excited and ready to dance. 

Also, in order to make everyone happy, here is the collection of languages and genres that would need to be played at our wedding: 
American music that older Americans like to dance to, old school Russian music, Russian dance music, Hebrew/Jewish music, French, Italian, Spanish (if I could only explain to you how much Russians love latin music ... soooo much!), Pop, Dance music, hip hop, classic rock (for the Big Guy), Jazz, Swing, Standards, at least two obscure Joe Dassin songs, American music that young Americans will want to dance to ... 
Its not that a DJ couldn't provide some of these types of music ... but a lot of the Russian and old-school Euro-pop that makes my Russian fam happy will not be on your average DJs playlist, and they are nearly impossible to find online.

But the Big Guy and I didn't need to debate at all, because the wedding music was not an issue for us ... we knew exactly who/what we wanted right away. 

And here is why:
Two years ago, we went a our friends K&A's wedding and saw the answer to all or our musical queries. And that answer came in the form of the most effin fantastic BAND, either of us has every seen! This band did it all! Russian, English, modern, old, Spanish, Italian ... I think you are starting to get the picture. They were in a word PERFECTION. And the Big Guy and I signed a contract with them, so they are officially our band now. 

Venue - check
Rabbi - check
Rings - check
Band - oh hell yeah!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Making BIG Moves .....

Oh yeh, we are makin moves .... we hired another one of our vendors! Word? Word. 

I will disclose who and for what on Monday. Happy Weekend!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Recipe for a gift for the Big Guy

Look what I found on The Blissful Bride ...

I am kinda digging the idea of giving these to the Big Guy on the big day ... a lotta cute, a little kitsch, with a splash of warm .... yeh that seems just about right. 

Find them here.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Gifts that rock everyone's world

You like giving gifts you say? But you want them chock full of meaning and purpose?? Then run, run, run like the wind over to Changing the Present. On their website you can purchase gifts that are actually charitable donations. I found this fantastic idea on A Hot Pink Petticoat and knew I had to share in the fabulosity.

 How great is this idea for wedding favors? Just purchase the gifts you want and then give each a guest a little card telling them what you purchased in their name (yes I know that this another DIY project to add to the list but its easy! Card stock + printer and your done). 

For example, Feed a Hungry Child for 1 day for $1 ... do not adjust your screens, you saw that right, all it takes is $1!

Or how about buying a Chick for Orphans in Africa? It will not only provide them with food but also teach them how to raise birds, produce a flock, and market eggs for income. All this for $3.

Or, how about buying Pencils for Orphans who were affected by the 2004 tsunami in Sri Lanka. Its only $5 to give them an art class.

There are some big ticket items too, so if your looking to drop a whole lotta cash, I say do it here, or - an even better idea - make your friends and family do it here! By setting up a registry for your wedding or shower on their site. 

I'll be your tree if you'll be my roots

Remember how I told you that a ketubah = art? And you know how I feel about trees .....

Could this be more perfect? No Chandler Bing - it could not. Right from the beautiful, simple tree at the top to the roots stitched, yep you read that right! The roots are sown into the paper! Ok now that your in love, go, go on check it out at New Ketubah (which I found on Something Old, Something New.)

Monday, May 25, 2009

Well aren't you lovely?

So you know how brides always tell bridesmaids, "you will love this dress! You will totally wear it again!" Well, maybe if this was the dress, that might actually be true ....

How gorgeous!?! The color, the flow, the cut ... and I guess being Rachel Weisz doesn't hurt the overall hotness. Image found on the hilarious Fug Girls blog.

Memorial Day

I hope everyone out there is having an enjoyable and meaningful Memorial Day.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Color me impressed

I don't really ascribe to the theory that you must must must pick colors and stick to them like religious law when engaging in this dance called wedding. I am much more of the: go with your gut, pick things in colors you like, and it will all come together in the end ... or it won't. But who wants to be miss matchy matchy anyway? Not I. 

But then I saw this lovely collection of colors and I just might be coming around. What do you think? So lovely right ...


Go vote for your favorite inspiration board over at My Island Wedding. I am number 23 Woodsy Meets City but there are so many great submissions I won't be hurt if you vote for someone else ... I'll just know that our relationship means more to me than it does to you, thats fine! (How good are my mama-inherited guilting skills? I mean like soooo good!) 

Happy Voting!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Engagement Pics!

Check out more of Sandy's work on her blog.

The best things in life are free

Let me set a scene for you. The Big Guy and Bridechka have booked a place, they set a date, they have a Rabbi ... I mean they are really making this whole wedding deal happen. They need to send out Save the Dates since many of their guests will be coming from across the country and some from across the world. They want to make a photo save the date from VistaPrint but there's a problem - no truly great photos of them and certainly no wedding photographer booked yet. So what to do???

Well, here is what I did, I trolled the classifieds over at Weddingbee to find photographers offering free engagement sessions and I found a whole bunch! The first one to get back to me was Sandy of Sandy Jenete Photography and she was fabulous. We did a session with her in Battery Park about two weeks ago and the photos are in! I am going to need our guys' help to decide which one to use for the save the dates! 

Here is sneak peak ... more to come very soon!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Happy Birthday to my Guy

Happy Birthday my darling, there is nothing I am more grateful for than you.

Picture of me and the Big Guy taken by the incomparable J over at girlsgourmand.

Entreat me not to leave you, or to return from following after you, For where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God. And where you die, I will die and there I will be buried. May the Lord do with me and more if anything but death parts you from me.
- Ruth 1:16 via A $10,000 Wedding via Miss Cheese

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Wedding Update

We have a Rabbi, people, thats right ... place, check! rings, check! Rabbi, check check! Even if we don't get anything else we are definitely going to be married by the evening of January 24th.

Let me back up a bit. The Big Guy and I we are big into our Judaism, both as a culture and as a religion.  The Big Guy used to be a really religious and has become a lot more mainstream recently but still has a love for many of the traditions. 

I was born in the Soviet Union where practicing Judaism was illegal. So I grew up not understanding who I was or where I came from, all I knew was that I was a Jew and therefore I would never be considered truly Russian but also my family wasn't allowed to leave (for more info on how we were finally allowed to leave check out this film). 

So, after years of being scared, suspicious, curious, distrustful, and intrigued by religion, I started to get proactive. I started taking classes and learning and asking questions and figuring out not just what Judaism is but who I am. 

I first met our Rabbi when I signed up to do a condensed Bat Mitzvah course for people who had never had become Bat Mitzvah before, like yours truly. I so enjoyed his teaching style, his humor, his openness, his kindness, and his overall welcoming presence that I started going to all of his classes and bringing the Big Guy and all of our friends with me. 

When we got engaged, we knew we wanted someone who knew us, someone who cared about us, someone who was happy to see us take this big step together, and most of all someone who understand our strong feelings about our culture and ethnicity and he was the first person who came to mind. Blogland meet our officiant, Rabbi Lawrence Hajioff.

Check him out .... 


oh yeh, and he's British ... doesn't get much better than that.

{Videos from JEC}

More inspiration for your floral folders

I seem to have flowers on the brain recently ... maybe its because everything else for our wedding is coming together really smoothly and I am massively dreading the part where I have to find a florist who (a) fits our budget, (b) fits our not-so-flowery style/aesthetic, (c) hmmm, I am not sure there is a (c) but I guess I will just repeat the first two: cheap and chic people! That's the goal! 

Well in any case, I couldn't resist adding this centerpiece to my mental (and actual, i.e. this blog) inspiration folder. Please to enjoy.

PS: We got so much wedding stuff done in the past few weeks, I will start posting all about it very shortly. I guess this whole wedding thing is really happening ... who knew? :)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

You are sooo pretty ....

Ketubah = Jewish marriage contract ... but also ketubah = art. And these are just stunning ...

Monday, May 11, 2009

Help your horticulturally-challenged girl

I have a particular fondness for giant flowers (especially when they are white and green), hence my devotion to giant calla lillies. So, I am walking with the Big Guy in Hudson River Park this weekend, when I noticed these lovelies. 
I stopped and immediately took a photo but I still have no clue what the are. And neither does the Big Guy which is a rare situation indeed (he is all good with the gardeny type shiz). 
So help me out ... what the heck are they???
Super cute, no?

Saturday, May 9, 2009

More food ...

So  of course I got caught up and stopped documenting the food at some point but I do have a few more photos for ya. First, the truffles. Sorry about the picture quality on this photo and the next (took them on my phone, during the actual party ... my guests thought I had finally lost my mind). The truffles are coated with almonds and pistachios.
I also made seared tuna, which had a sesame crust. The tuna is below with a creamy wasabi sauce.
Then I also made a salmon mouse ...
Then I used a frosting bag to pipe the mouse onto cucumber slices.

The party was raging success (and not just because of the food .... although it helped .... it was mostly because of the booze .... and my fantastic friends!) Hope your Friday was as great as mine :)

Friday, May 8, 2009

Progress thus far....

As promised, here is my cooking update for the housewarming party tonight.

I started working with the sweets first .. they are more fun to make (and eat) and they take way longer! First up, chocolate covered cheesecake lollipops (inspired by a post by The Blissful Bride). I started with this
And this (I didn't have lollipop sticks so I used straws .. I am a little worried they won't be strong enough to hold up but we shall see)
Then I used a melon baller to thoroughly destroy the cheesecake and turn it into little lollipops which promptly went into the freezer to harden up.
Then I set up my ghetto double boiler (as seen below) to melt the chocolate.
Check it ... who doesn't wanna lick the bottom of that bowl?And I dipped each pop in the chocolate and voila ...
I might drizzle them with some white chocolate later ... but in the meantime, while I still have melted chocolate to use, I move on to my next dessert Chocolate Covered Wine-Soaked Figs. The dried figs have been soaking in red wine since yesterday ... see they got all plumpy ...
I just dipped them in the chocolate and popped them in the fridge to harden. I'll show more of these later.

And finally dessert number 3 ... Chocolate Truffles, starting to see a theme here??
First I made the ganache (super easy, just hot cream and lots of chocolate).
Then I poured the ganache into a glass container and put that in the fridge to harden up as well. In about an hour, I will take it out and form the truffles.
When they are made into little circles I will be topping each truffle with either pistachio or almond which I crushed in my food processor.

More to come soon ....

Not feeling very weddingy today ...

Because I have my housewarming on the brain .... I will be making lots of yummy things for our house warming party tonight and will try to take some pics and post along the way. I know its not wedding-related but since I am not super artsy like most of the other blogger brides, I have to showcase what I can actually do well .... cook! And trust, your girl can cook. Be back later with pics.