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A Highland Fairy Tale: We Are Ladies Who Lunch

Friday marked the beginning of the end.  It was here, our wedding weekend had arrived and I wanted life to slow down as much as possible to enjoy every second of it.

Mr. Sword and I before we kicked him out!

Mr. Sword and I before we kicked him out!

Remember when I mentioned Mom Sword wanted to throw a little shindig for the women in the family/bridal party the day before the wedding?  Well, she did and it was lovely.  All my favorite women in one place.

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Flavored water anyone? I need to get myself a pair of these pitchers!

Flavored water anyone? I need to get myself a pair of these pitchers from BBB!

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Mom Sword and Cousin/Bridesmaid Jo were the hosts and BM Jo even put together a slide show that gave every woman at the luncheon a princess identity.  I thought it was so cute how they wanted to incorporate the fairy tale theme with everyone and I also got to talk about how much each person meant to me which was a great way for the ladies to get to know each other.

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Of course we also wore our princess headbands that MOH Big Eyes gifted everyone in the bridal party.  They made their first appearance at my bachelorette party and were a big hit with all the girls!

Mrs. Sword and Usher/Cousin Dancer

Mrs. Sword and Usher/Cousin Dancer

Mrs. Sword with BM/Cousin Jo

Mrs. Sword with BM/Cousin Jo

We aren't wearing our headbands yet but I had to include this one of Sister Big Eyes and I, we kind of look alike here!

We aren’t wearing our headbands yet but I had to include this one of Sister Big Eyes and I, we kind of look alike here!

The Ladies luncheon was a really sweet and normal speed memory in an otherwise fast-paced weekend.  It was also the only pre-wedding event that Mr. Sword’s Mum and Sister could attend being that they live in Scotland.  It was so special to have our families together in one country if even for one weekend!

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Are you going to have a special get together before your wedding day?  Did anyone notice that the dress I am wearing (from the Loft) was also one of the MANY I wore on my honeymoon a few weeks later?

(all photos personal)

Sword Wedding footer FINAL

Skipped some of the Sword saga?  It’s OK, catch up today!

Pre-Wedding
Teaser video!
Final preparations, snow, and tears!

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Showered in Chicago

As you can probably guess from the title of my post, I had my Chicago shower this past weekend.  Although I mean it both figuratively and literally, because we had a whole day of rains showers to match my event!  It was a wonderful afternoon and I’m so grateful to all of the beautiful ladies who came to celebrate with me!

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When I first got engaged early last year Boss Lady told me she wanted to throw me a LLLL shower here in Chicago for all my Chicago peeps, and I was so touched!  I know bridal showers are a bonus as not everyone gets one, and I was thrilled when she made the generous offer.

Boss Lady is also Mom to my flower girl Littlest C.  Littlest C was so adorable at the shower, I heard she helped set up, I saw her greet and talk to guests, and when she wasn’t bonding with Sister/MOH Big Eyes she was being the cutest, most adorable and mature 6-year-old ever!

Miss Sword, Littlest C, and Boss Lady

Miss Sword, Littlest C, and Boss Lady

The LLLL stands for Ladies Linen and Lingerie Luncheon.  Like the name implies you aren’t limited to buying off registry because sexy late night outfits and panties are encouraged as well!  I received lots of beautiful and clever gifts, and some awesome pieces of lingerie.  I think the raciest one was given to me by my mother!  AWKWARD.

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Boss Lady had the luncheon catered and the food was amazing!

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Boss Lady decorated the space with gorgeous purple and white flowers, and made the sweetest treat bags for everyone.  They included a nail polish from Victoria’s Secret, scented drawer fresheners, and adorable hankies.  All in different colors.  So clever!

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She really put together a classy event and I’m so lucky so many of my friends could make it.  Mom Sword and Sister Big Eyes were also in attendance having flown in from MN for the weekend.

This was taken at my church the morning of the shower, apparently it's the only pic I have of the three of us!

This was taken at my church the morning of the shower, apparently it’s the only pic I have of the three of us!

NOW LET’S TALK ABOUT CAKE.  I have to give a shout-out to my friends S and A for bringing the most amazing cake I’ve ever seen!!!

S and A are the sisters on the left.

S and A are the sisters on the left.  Can’t you tell?

Isn’t this thing adorable???  It’s got a tartan sash and a little sword.  I mean, COME ON.  I’m in love.

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The tartan sash definitely looked more purple in person than it showed in photos!

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Another shout-out goes to my girl M for coming up with the most unique shower game I’ve ever played!

MX

She actually printed out status’ from Facebook and had everyone guess if Mr. Sword or myself had written them.  Hilarious, smart, and perfect for our social media crazed era!  Of course most of the longer posts belonged to yours truly, but I think I was the only person who got 100%, go figure!  🙂

Mr. Sword showed up at the end of the shower so he could carry gifts to the car and help me thank everyone for coming.  I mean, most of the lingerie is a present for him anyway, right!?!

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Finally my favorite photos have to be from my sneaky Sister Big Eyes.  She was in charge of taking pictures during the shower and she decided to surprise me with an abundance of my famous “Miss Sword” poses using her own mug.  I definitely laughed out loud when I saw them on my camera later that night!   🙂

melissa collage

Did you just have a bridal shower?  Has anyone played the Facebook status game before?  Isn’t the cake just perfect??

Ooh-la-la!!

Let’s talk about panties!  Because I got a crap load of them at my shower and they’re all adorable!  It was all part of a game/poem that my hostess’ read to me.  It was so fun to open each pair as they read each stanza, and I think it was a real-crowd pleaser as well!

I LOVED the games at my shower, they were so fun but at the same time didn’t put anyone on the spot.  I thought I’d share what we did for those who are interested and those planning a shower in the near future!

The first game was on-going throughout the shower.  When you arrived you were asked to pick up two clothespins and place them somewhere on your clothes.

If you said one of the three off-limit words, someone could steal your clothespin and whoever had the most on by the end of the afternoon won a prize!  The three hot words were “wedding,” Mr. Sword’s real name, and “Chicago.”  I thought this was hysterical because my family often complains about how often I talk about Chicago while in Minnesota.  For example, someone will say, “The traffic is so bad today!”  And I’ll say, “Well, you should see the traffic we have in Chicago.  Chicago is way worse.”  Needless to say, I lost my two clothespins right away and then spent the rest of the afternoon saying Mr. Sword’s name and Chicago quite frequently!

The second game was the panty poem which has been featured on WB before by Mrs. French Bulldog and others!  I won’t write out the poem again as it’s pretty easy to find online if you search “panty poem,” but I will show you all the beautiful panties I received!  I love Victoria’s Secret underwear, do you?

Panty 1: Bridal White- First Night, Panty 2: Sexy lace panties for Honeymoon, Panty 3: Red- Valentine’s Day, Panty 4: Leopard or Purple for 1st anniversary

Panty 5: Pink and Blue for first baby, Panty 6: Sexy full cut pair for 25 years, Panty 7: Big Giant Pair (granny panties)

Here’s hoping I never fit into those!  I have a big butt already but YIKES!  At least they’re granny panties in my favorite color.  🙂

Finally, the third game we played was a concentration/memory game.  Our hostess’ split us up into three groups to make it more interactive. I’m going to write this one out because it’s not super long, and there seem to be a few variations of it online. This version was perfect for us!

Candy Match Game
Butterfingers = First Date Interaction
Hugs = Warm Embraces
Pay Day = Wedding Ring Purchase Date
Twix = Bachelor Party Pranks
Mounds = Gifts
Hot Tamales = The Bride
Sweet Tarts = The Bride and Groom
Lifesavers = The Parents
100 Grand = The Reception
Skor = The Honeymoon Night
Starburst = Groom’s Honeymoon Reverie
Baby Ruth = 9 Months After the Honeymoon

This game was amazing because when you matched a set, you got a full-sized version of the corresponding candy bar. I LOVE sweets and luckily for me I had bridal luck on my side as I kept winning candy bar after candy bar. I tried to give a few away so I didn’t end up eating them all thankfully!

The below photos are courtesy of Meagan Maue.

Ok, I promise I’m done talking about my shower!  I’ll be back to regular wedding planning stuff next week.

First up, I was able to check out the Cinderella shoe line at DSW so I’ll fill you in on whether or not those shoes were fit for this princess!

(all photos personal unless otherwise noted)

What games did you do at your shower?  Did you get panties or candy bars like me?  Did you experience any “bridal luck?”

…What a Weekend Baby: Bridal Shower Photos!

Remember how I said I was waiting on something before I could recap my MN bridal shower?  Well, it’s here!  MY SHOWER PHOTOS!!

So, part of BM L Dawg’s shower gift to was hire her friend to take photos!  Such a great idea, especially, since I was worrying about who would take photos at the shower and didn’t want anyone to be stuck behind the lens the whole time!  BM L Dawg knew it’d be the perfect gift for me so she asked her friend (who does photography as a hobby) to capture all of those special moments and now we have tons of great detail, candid, and posed shots!  (This is a photo heavy post BTW, in case that’s not obvious yet.)

All of these lovely photos are courtesy of Meagan Maue.  (thank you Meagan!)

My bridal shower was held at my home church up in suburbs of the Twin Cities and the day turned out to be pretty rainy and gross but that didn’t stop us or the guests from having a wonderful time!

The black and white theme was incorporated EVERYWHERE which made me so giddy and excited when I first walked into the room!  I was given a corsage to wear which made me feel even more special!

There is a funny story attached to the pine cones… since I got engaged in Feb. of 2012 I have been talking about incorporating pine cones into my decor because my March wedding is at the tail end of winter, and their natural brown color would go well with our centerpieces, plus I just really like the look of pine cones!  Well most of my family did not like this idea (Mom Sword was very verbal about her dislike of pine cones at a wedding) so you can imagine my surprise when I saw a bowl of them at my shower!  Yay, I finally got my pine cones!

My shower hostess’ are some of the best people I know.  I wish there were enough words to thank them for everything!  My two aunts, cousin, and BM L Dawg really out-did themselves!  And since the shower was Black and White themed, my beautiful and AMAZING hostess’ all wore a splash of red to make themselves stand out.  Brilliant.

BM L Dawg, Auntie B, Cuz-E, Miss Sword, and Auntie N

Of course I had to get some photos with Mom Sword.

And of course MOH/Sister Big Eyes had to photo bomb us!  It was pretty hilarious.

I thought there was the perfect amount of games (another post on that coming soon) and the perfect amount of eating and chatting.  Opening gifts was a blast although I sort of rushed through them because I was worried about people getting bored!  I guess I over-compensated a bit and soon MOH Big Eyes and BM L Dawg were telling me to slow down!  At least I entertained everyone with my dramatic and exaggerated faces.

Even the food was black and white and red.  Can I just say they did a fantastic job considering the options out there?  Pretty sure I’m the only person who had jicama at their shower.

Auntie B did a great job creating these letters to highlight my princess theme.

After gifts and games, it was time for toasts and champagne!  I love this photo below of my adorable hostess’ getting ready in the kitchen!

 

Hearing the heartfelt toasts was such a beautiful way to end the event.  I am so blessed to have such great family and friends!

And then Mom Sword said I should speak!  Normally I’m a bundle of nerves when I have to say something off the cuff (yes I know, despite being an actor), but instead of freaking out, I took a deep breath and thanked everyone from the bottom of my heart.  It looked a little something like this:

Finally, because no one had to play photographer, we were able to get a group shot at the end!  Everyone was asked to wear black and it looked really great!

Sorry for the wait, but I hope you enjoyed photos!  Did you have a themed shower?  What was it?

Up next, my dramatic dress appointment story.  Get ready.

…What a Weekend Baby: 3, Miss Sword Pretends to Craft

OK, so I’m doing this series and I’m holding out on you guys because I have sort of a surprise coming when I recap the shower, but I have to wait a bit longer before I start sharing what happened, so in the meantime, I’m jumping a bit out-of-order to show you an evening of wedding planning in my parent’s home.  Sit tight while we watch (through photos mostly) the Sword women do a bit of DIY.

I decided a long time ago I would make our guy’s boutonnieres (since they wouldn’t be made of real flowers) many months before the wedding to minimize stressing about them as much as possible.  I wanted to make sure we started far enough in advance because  A) What if they looked terrible and we had to start all over? and B) What if this DIY thing is harder than it looks? (it is.)  So after gathering a bunch of supplies, Mom Sword, MOH/Sister Big Eyes and I all set to work making a few prototype bouts.

This is me working slowly hard.

After one pathetic attempt I gave up and Sister Big Eyes (aided by Mom Sword) gave it a whirl.

Below you will see what I came up with next to what Sister came up with.  My version is the sad piece on the left, hers is the one that looks like it will stay together for the duration of a wedding day.  Clearly, we had a DIY limitation on our hands.  CLEARLY.

Needless to say we’ll be going with MOH Big Eyes’ prototype, which started off with a bit of ivory ribbon placed behind the flower to make the tartan pop out, but in the end we decided it looked a lot “cleaner” and “finished” without the ribbon.  What do you think?

With this wedding decision tackled all we need is a few more tartan scraps and some free time so we MOH Big Eyes can get started on the rest of them!

But don’t worry, I definitely redeemed myself by showing off my scissor skills and cutting flowers to fill Littlest C’s flower girl basket with petals.  We plan on spraying them with perfume for a nice feminine touch.

Isn’t Fibonacci the best helper EVER?  He’s also Littlest C’s understudy…

(all photos personal)

What do you think of our hard work?  Do you like how the tartan is popping up everywhere?  Isn’t Fiblet adorable?!?!

My wedding dress doesn’t fit and I feel crazy but my shower rocked, what a weekend baby: 1

Hive, how’s it going!?!  Hopefully you’ve picked up on my “Call Me Maybe” reference (I’m sorry, I couldn’t help myself).  I just got back from Minnesota and what a whirlwind trip it was!  I got a BILLION things done, well almost.

I was able to book two new vendors (flowers and hair/makeup), pick up my dress (sort of), and attend my very own bridal shower.  Mom Sword and Sister Big Eyes and I even had to time to do some DIY’ing of boutonnieres.  Well, I should say they DIY’ed and I sat close by drinking diet coke and offering moral support.

I have so much to recap from my short visit that I decided to make it into a series.  I love it when Bees name their wedding recaps, but also when they do pre-wedding series on invitations, showers or anything else for that matter!

I have lots to say because this weekend was full of so many highs and also a few lows (waahhh).  So hang on and enjoy the ride!

My wedding dress doesn’t fit and I feel crazy but my shower rocked, what a weekend baby:1

You might remember my when I got my invite to this shower, it was black and white, and hinted at a similar theme.  My invite specifically asked that I wear white to the shower and all of the guests were asked to wear black.  I knew immediately where I wanted to go to get my outfit.  Why, White House Black Market of course!

Lucky for me, I was shopping at the end of August, just when all of the summer dresses are going on sale and the fall dresses are coming out.  And really lucky for me was that white was going out of style with Labor Day right around the corner!  So I found a fabulous dress on sale for 60 dollars and I’m confident I can re-wear it again starting next summer.  Here is me posing in it a few weeks before the shower.

Naturally I HAD to buy the geometric matching jewelry set that complimented the dress so well.

(all photos personal)

Sorry that’s all I got for today!  Miss Sword needs to catch up on life!  But stay tuned…  🙂