well its about time...

oke dokey fabulous people. So I know I've been MIA recently but I've got a great reason. I'm currently in the process of completing my final study project for a Masters of Architecture degree (in addition to helping coach my school's women's lacrosse team, planning a my work's annual BIG TIME symposium AND planning a wedding. Yes, I know I am a crazy person). So admist the hectic craziness of my life (and the more & more frequent 'I cannot handle everything!' breakdowns) I must force myself to stop and smell the roses. This past weekend was absolutely fabulous in a few weird ways:

1) On friday I drove to cute & quaint Brenham, TX to meet with our engagement pictures photographer. Gorgeous and windy day. After a 45 drive I'm in a strange town I've never been in before and I dont really know if I've arrived at the right place. So after sitting in my car for a few mins and calling my roomie for an internet confirmation of the address, I get out of the car to go meet the photog. As soon as i shut my car door I realize that my keys are still inside the car. Rephrase: my keys are still inside the very LOCKED car. All I have to say is that AAA is a God send - no more than 30 mins later my car was unlocked by a super sweet auto repair guy and I was on my way back to home. Oh, and it turns out I was at the photog's place after all and we're getting our photos done this coming weekend!

2) The temp here was a fabulous mid- 70 degrees with a strong breeze. First time my windows have been open all year long. Keeping my huge architectural measured drawings to stay put has been a challenge, but it's totally worth it.

3) colored pencils are fabulous -- color makes bubble diagrams and preliminary space plans so much more fun.

4) My finace has been adorable, encouraging and wonderful. I was, quite frankly, paranoid that I hadn't nailed down a photog for the actual wedding yet and he reassured me that everything would work out. After the photog of first choice was snatched up on our date and second choice was WAY out of our price range, I was scared to death that very very good photog choice three would be a goner before I could actually meet him during spring break. 'Bama boy constantly told me everyone would work out perfectly and if not, we'd make it work, no matter what. Needless to say, when i called the photog the next day, everything was inline and ready to go for a meeting in march. It was perfect because when 'bama boy called me a few days later to tell me that planned rehersal dinner location was snatched away from under us (really... a very crummy story), I was able to offer him the same comfort. We're now in talks with an AMAZING and very flexible location for our rehersal. YAY

Now... on to finishing the week, organizing the symposium craziness and then sitting back, relaxing and enjoying a wonderful Valentines day weekend w/ my honey (who I havent seen in almost a month!!!) In the words of one of my fave people: Ciao!

PS - my wedding dress finally arrived!! It's in Virginia so I can't try it on til break in March, but my parents say its super simple and absolutely gorgeous. I would post a picture here, but I know my dearly beloved checks this blog once in a blue moon so no ruining the surprise. I will let you know how it looks in a little over a month! (btw: it's a jcrew erica gown.....)


Too many good things at one location

Random posting: I fell across this little gem of an interview here about 3 of my favorite things:

1. Adaptive Reuse
2. Kate Spade (well, its about Andy Spade, who is 1 half of the masterminding couple behind the fabulous handbag/shoe/whatever you like brand)

3. J. Crew

a clothing store, in an old liquor store, that doubles as an art/curiosities gallery. Historic preservation at it's finest! Too bad it's a men's only store, I would have way too much fun at a place like this.

ps - Totally digging the coral sweater Andy's rocking in the above picture. Wonder if Bama boy would ever would wear something like that?


Inauguration Eye Candy

Quick Blog entry today, since I have to rush off to my first day of my last semester of classes EVER (three years ago I never thought I'd make it to today). Anyhow, today is an incredibly important day for America: Inauguration Day! Even though I was not a supporter of Mr. Obama during this past election season (i didnt really support anyone .... but thats another topic for another day), today is truly a historic and amazing day for our lovely country and we should all be proud and supportive of our new first family. So for all my friends in the DC area who are lucky enough to be attending inauguration balls, have a fabulous time tonight! And for the first family: congratulations and all the best wishes to you!

And in the spirit of inauguration day, here are some inauguration dresses of past first ladies:
Nancy Reagan's dress is as gorgeous today as it was back in 1981

Jackie O's dress. Simple, streamlined and absolutely elegant. Need I say more?

Mamie Eisenhower modelling her dress for the 1953 inauguration

Caroline Harrison's 1889 inaguration dress. Gorgeous in a Victorian Age sort of way.


Rethinking video....

Up until I saw this video I was TOTALLY anti-videographer for our wedding (thoughts of in-your-face sappy video of awkward moments and embarassing relatives danced throughout my mind). HOWEVER, watch this clip from videographers ROCKMELON & a choreographed 1st dance --you'll totally understand why I'm rethinking my prior stance (ps- I LOVE the MJ reference... I can't imagine my wedding w/out some insane dance moments). Enjoy!

I still don't think we'll have a videographer for the wedding, but some other things were solidified on my frigid day trip to the outer banks today. Now we just have to set a date (a WHOLE other issue alone). But other than that, no wedding posts til spring break in March! Til then its architecture and architecture alone (well, plus or minus a few fun things thrown in the mix for my sanity's sake). Happy weekend to all!!


Things I Love (Brrr-iffic edition)

I absolutely love being home, primarily because unlike where I'm currently in school, Virginia has seasons. When it's winter, it's cold, when it's in the summer, it's appropriately hot. It's just the natural way things should be. So imagine how delighted I was for today.... a high of 32!! I had a million errands and appointments to run around town today, so instead of hunkering down with a cup of hot coco, sweats and a fire, I busted out my favorite, most neglected, Christmas gift --- my J. Crew double cloth Marie Coat. The timing was great when we bought this coat (no shipping and 1/2 price.... finding glorious things at great deals is an absolute blast to me!) and I cannot recommend it enough. Tromping around today with that coat, my trusty old turquiose scarf, gold metallic gloves and brand new black boots made me absolutely adore this time of year. Cozy and feeling like a million bucks. If the only options of day to day winter-wear avaliable were frumpy and gaudy, I think I would truly dispise this time of year but thank heavens for J Crew and their adorable winter collections (and fabulous discounts!)

Unfortunately when I leave in Sunday to head back to the Lone Star State, the winter coats will stay behind to sit in the closet back in VA -- Sunday's high down at school on Monday is a *frigid* 68 degrees. But tomorrow promises another fabulous blustry day with a high of 25, as I head down to the Outer Banks for a day trip. So if you're in for truly chilly weather tomorrow: smile, breathe in that crisp air, bundle up in something adorable and take a trip down to your corner coffee shop for a warm drink...trust me, you'll LOVE the winter!


Things I Don't Understand

10 things I have given up trying to understand:
1. Crocs.... not acceptible in any way, shape or form
2. US Airline Companies.... crappy customer service, unreliance and outragously jacked up prices. A truly capitalist society would have gotten rid of them years ago.
3. Egocentric designers & their U.G.L.Y. architecture (ie: Norman Foster, Frank Gehry, etc.)
4. Paying obscene amounts of money for heinous "fashion" items (see below):
Designer: MuiMui / Price : $1,595
5. People who are too lazy to return their shopping carts to the proper stalls in the parking lot. Walking 20 feet won't kill you.
6. Spandex. Only acceptible uses: UnderArmor worn while working out & 80s themed parties
7. Slow Walkers
8. 99.9% of MTV's content. I feel like I loose IQ points when I watch any show on that station
9. Blatently obvious fashion knock-offs (Coach/LV anyone?).
10. short-sleeved dress shirts on men.


Pre-Planning Planning

So I'm back from my trip (which turned out to be painfully longer than expected or planned -- an ordeal I'll be commenting on in another post at another time), and having a blast with my finace's family. The wedding we attended was a nice Southern family affair in Birmingham, AL, a town I've never visited prior to this trip. Now I mentioned before that I'm engaged, but I've been holding off doing a lot of the planning since 1) we can't set a date yet, and 2) I'm finishing up grad school this May and would be sentencing myself to unprecedented and unnecessary amounts of stress. I'm a planner, very detail oriented and am in the process of becoming a reformed control-freak, so I would literally kill myself designing this thing AND finishing school. However, that being said, it was imposible not to enter "wedding world" while actually attending a wedding. So, I've managed to gather a few images that I can see being a preliminary inspiration for this shindig I'm going to be planning. Since I'm a pretty traditional person in how I approach the world, I found myself looking at alot of primarily vintage prints and fashions. this Givenchy dress I found in an old Harpers Bazaar magazine ad. I absolutely love the full skirt and clean lines. Bridesmaid dress inspiration perhaps?

I've always had a thing about being connected with where you're from and the place you call "home." My fiance & I are very "state" oriented, with him being a VERY proud Alabama boy, while I was born & raised in the fabulous state of Virginia. When thinking of flowers, I thought using our state flowers as the flowers for our wedding would only be appropriate: Dogwood for VA (top) and Camellia (bottom) for 'bama. It all kind of depends on if its even possible, which I have yet to figure out. The truth: Roses bore me.
My family & I have been vacationing in Corolla on the OuterBanks of NC since before I was born. For as long as I've been alive, the Whalehead Club (pictured above) has always been a personally significant building and was THE building that actually inspired me to go into Historic Preservation & architecture. I actually worked for the architecture firm that did the restoration of the structure. Even though they don't allow receptions in the house (would you want 100 drunk people spilling red wine all over your newly-restored-for-multiple-millions cork floors & mahogany walls? I think not), I couldnt imagine not having this gorgeous Art Nouveau masterpiece play some part in the wedding. Guess that means I'm getting married on the Outer Banks.. yay destination wedding!
No matter what flowers or dresses or whatever else we eventually choose, the goal is this: Simple, classic & casual. I am not a fan of the stuffy, uber-traditional weddings where the bride wears gobs of lace & sequins, the guys wear ugly & boring rented tuxes and the bridesmaids want to burn their dresses as soon as they step outside of the reception hall (27 Dresses anyone?). So while I'm not going to be regularly blogging about the joys involved with planning this event until after I graduate in May, I'll be occasionally posting random things here and there as they come across my path... just like everything else.


Rolling Rolling Rolling......

Today I'm taking a road trip from middle of nowhere Missouri to Alabama for a wedding on Saturday. Apparently I'm driving a majority of the way since sleep eluded my fiance last night (oh yes, new fact for you all about me: I'm a newly engaged woman. more on that to come later). Anywho, if i see anything of interest on our trek, postings shall occur. Otherwise, happy Thursday!


Take the dive

After toying with the idea of starting a blog and some encouraging by wonderful friends, I decided to take the dive and just have fun. This being my first post, I really dont know what to say, except to expect a lot of random ramblings, since thats just the kind of person I am. I'm interested in a little bit of everything, and this blog will most likely reflect that. Stay tuned, who knows what might happen.
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