Saturday, March 30, 2013

{It's personal} Holding mah shit together.

I received this beautiful post card today from my lovely Maid of Honour Kerry. (Actually it had arrived on Monday - but my mom had kept it hidden until this morning). I don't usually do such "personal-blabby" posts on indieBerries but I thought I would just take a few minutes to take a little breather here and preserve how I'm feeling right now for the future kids (and all of indieBerries land). 

Getting married is no joke. It's for a lifetime. Like, for Realsies. and Forever. With the person you admire, love and adore above all else and it's emotional man. E-MO-tion.AL. At "regular" weddings (ie any wedding that is not my own) I'm a teary-sob-face. I just get so happy and overwhelmed with good emotion that it pours out my eyeballs. But this wedding, this is my own wedding and I have no idea how I'm going to keep my shit together - It's just gonna be pouring out of every facehole and there ain't nothing I can do to stop it.

Eyes. nose. snot. saliva.

It's gonna be beautiful.

To give you an idea of the extensiveness of this problem, I thought I would post the post card that I received this morning from my Maid of Honour. When I opened it and started reading it - the emotions began with a 'classy tear'. A very refined and elegant tear, showing exactly the right amount of controlled emotion. Then my mom and dad came into the room and started snapping pics of me asking "What does it say?!"

Me: It says, "Dearest Ché, special friend..... waaaaaaa waaaaa no, I can't. I just can't"

Then started the 'borderline tears'. Borderline tears are on the brink of un-attraction. They are very streamy and gushy - but no nose action involved yet. So within the space of one postcard sentence, I have progressed from 'classy tears' to 'borderline tears'. Excellent. So my folks left me alone to have my little moment and I messaged my beautiful Maid of Honour to say that I had gotten her postcard and she phoned right away to explain some stuff on the postcard and to say how excited they are to see me.

Then began the 'ugly tears'. I am pretty sure, I don't need to explain 'ugly tears'. They are streamy, snotty, face-puffy, red-eye-makin' kind of freak-tears that contribute to highly un-attractive face-contorting.  Throw in a few breathy-guffaws and you have yourself a circus show. You look down and your neck is completely sopping and you don't know what kind of liquid it is, but it's definitely come out your face.

Ugly tears exhibit A:


From a postcard.

Now, the problem with the 'ugly-tears' is that once you are on a roll - you are on. a. roll. Everything will make you emotional. I posted this postcard pic on twitter and my friend Keri replied with some smileys. (smileys).
Me: waaaaa waaaa waaaa.... guffaw... waaa... wahhhaaaa....

Then I opened up the most heartfelt and beautiful email from another friend of mine, also a Kerry.

Me: waaaaa waaaaa. waaa... that's so beautiful!!... wwwaa..... guffaw.. waaaa.. wailing... waa.. and why do i have so many friends named Kerry?! waaaaaa..... waaa....*snot*..... wailing waaaa..

So. If this bout of ugly tear-bombing was induced from a postcard. I have no idea how I'm going to control myself on the actual day - (exactly one week from now). {On a side-note, they should think of a way to harness tear-drops to convert to electrical energy - cause I could single-handedly solve all the world's fuel-consumption problems - just thinking about it gets me teary}.

Also - Warren landed in South Africa on Friday morning and is busy having his head flushed in a toilet/ jumping off a bridge/ streaking through busy traffic/ taming rabid lions with his Bachelors Weekend. If he survives his Stag do, I will see him on Monday afternoon - for the first time since the end of February when I left London. I have no doubt it's gonna be emotional.

I'm gonna wipe all my snot, tears and face-juice all over him.

But don't worry,
He loves it.

{guest post} A Nerdy Interlude

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This blog post today is here to give you a much needed break from all the "wedding-ness" that is going on at indieBerries at this current time. A fab blog reader Divya has sent me this self confessed "rather nerdy" poem. I'll be the first to admit that I love a good nerdism. In fact, The Warr has even bought me some of those nerdish looking glasses because he's grow to love a good nerd (me) as much as I do. 

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I'm also a huge fan of "poems" in general. And I often whack up a little rhyme-fest for friends birthdays or special occasions. This nerdy poem is about Marie Curie and all her lovers. lol. Have a read - you may even learn something...


Marie Curie and her many lovers

Of all the ladies of the night
There was but one of noble plight
A woman of radiating fame
Yes Marie Curie was her name
But what of her lovers, pray do tell
Her zeal for science flowed to scientists as well

Her first love, Zorawski, was a young mathematician
But his family, alas, stuck strong to tradition
Her background was poor, what could she do
She left for Paris, a new world and crew

Next on the list, an equating force
Drawn together by magnetism, an unknown source
Pierre Curie was the man she would marry
And together they did a Nobel Prize carry

His death was sudden, but she did not care
For next was a lover, a steamy affair
Paul Langerin was married, and her student, you know
What a lady of science, how far she did go

And what of the others, any other valentine
Mendelev, Rutherford or perhaps Einstein
No one can be sure, for when Marie Curie did expire
Her heart, set in radium, kept her secrets of desire


haha - Isn't it awesome?!
Yes. Yes it is.

Thank you so much Divya - please write many more poems like this for when you start your own blog!

For now you can follow Divya on twitter @Diwi_Babu
and on instagram @diwibabu

Friday, March 29, 2013

{Wedding} Our Wedding Invites

I've been desperately wanting to share these with you for some time now - but time itself has been rather fleeting and any spare moments I do have, go towards checking and re-checking guestlists and supplier info and RSVPs (and sending emails to the people who haven't RSVP'ed yet. Ahem PEOPLE).

But finally! Here is a little peek at our WEDDING INVITATIONS!

I'm not going to start off this post by saying "I wanted something a little different..." Because duh. Every bride wants something "a little different". When most of the time it ends up all being very similar to everything else. What I will say though, is that I wanted something tactile. Something with different textures, a mixture of papers and things and bits and pieces stuck/tied/stitched/pieced together. I wanted something that had a very definite hand-crafted feel and something that guests would immediately know has been individually crafted just for them. When our guests received our invitations I wanted them to feel like they were opening up a secret little package and almost taking a peek into a drawer of our daily lives. Our invites were not fussy about measured lines, straight cut papers and neat edges. They were torn, tacked and bundled into beautiful individual parcels.

Here's how it began:

As with all of our wedding projects I started with making a few different prototypes in different papers, fonts, colours and sizes to get an idea of what would work best.

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Initially I began experimenting with using brightly coloured paper clips to bind some elements of the invites together - also to create the "bottom drawer" vibe I mentioned earlier. I later switched these out for brightly coloured mini wooden pegs.

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We chose the basic colour scheme of the invites to be different shades of coppers, bronzes, earthy browns and golds and I wanted to add a pop of colour with some bright ribbons and the mini pegs.

We ended up choosing quite a "standard" format for the actual wording of the invite. "Standard" in that I have seen this type of design on loads of different wedding and design blogs.

The Invitation Elements
There were several bits and pieces that we used to construct our invites. The first, and most important being the actual invitation wording. This was printed on an earthy brown cardstock with quite a grainy texture (above). Once these were printed I sourced some very thick and slightly embossed sheets of paper in different copper and bronze tones. I tore up two different sized pieces of this paper and used bright pink cotton to machine-stitch these to the invitation wording. (As you can see from the pic below, some invitations had the bronze sheet as the under layer and some had it has the top layer)

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The stitching really helped to give another dimension of texture and even though I am not really a seamstress, it was quite fun to stitch them all up and I only broke the sewing machine once twice.

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 The relationship between Warr and I has grown through letters and writing and emails and good song lyrics and I knew I wanted to include a few meaningful quotes to bring in this wordy-business. So I printed three of our favourite quotes in a soft brown onto a metallic gold paper. The three quotes were:
Happy is the man who finds a true friend and far happier is he who finds that true friend in his wife. - Franz Schubert
There is always some madness in love, but there is also always some reason in madness. - Friedrich Nietzche. 
Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, whilst loving someone deeply gives you courage. - Lao Tzu 
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The next element were the origami hearts which I sat and folded. (Yes I did). I used this particular style of origami heart because it created a bit of a bookmark effect which would be easy to combine it and "clip-onto" other elements of the invitation. It took a bit of guesswork to work out exactly where I should print the names onto the paper I bought and at what size it should be. But eventually I got it to work just perfectly so that our names and our wedding date met at exactly the centre of the heart after it had been folded. You can't really tell from these pictures but the paper I used for the origami hearts was almost a translucent/opaque sheet

Also pictured above is a photo of Warren and I taken from our recent trip to Turkey, I printed these on glossy photo paper and styled them to look like mini polaroids. (Obsession with old school cameras ?! yep.)

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For many of our guests who are not from the area we included a thin strip of directions. These were actually printed on scented paper. (Yes, I know). I'm not even sure if any of our guests would have noticed this - and it's not exactly as if you can put a "scratch-n-sniff" sticker on your wedding invite. (Can you?). We closed up the directions with the top peeping out and fastened it with our mini polaroid snap and a brightly coloured peg.

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We then attached an origami heart to one of the quotes and tucked it behind the direction slip. We tied the whole thing together with a coppery-brown ribbon.

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I got some of my family to come over and help assemble all the bits and pieces once they were all completed. Family is good at helping. Also, that bottle of wine in the background there?
Wine is good at helping too.

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As a final touch I stamped a "Made with Love" onto the back of each individually crafted invitation package and sent them off in gorgeous shimmery-gold envelopes.

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What do you think?!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

{Guest blogger} My Word Pie

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When I received today's guest blog post - I knew I liked it before I'd even read it. With a title like Eat Breakfast in your Wedding Gown - (and with being the cereal junkie that I am), what is not to love? Then I realised that this guest blogger is also an ex-Rhodent! Now, there is just something about Rhodes Students that immediately just connects us, which makes me SO excited to share this guest post with you all today!

Introducing: Marita MacDonald - the talented writer behind My Word Pie. Marita owns a brand engagement agency in Liverpool, UK - where she lives with her husband and their three-month old baby Gus. You can read more from her crazy/fun life on her blog - her conversation vignettes are hilarious!

Today Marita is sharing her 15 point guide to making the absolute most out of your wedding day. I would like you all to pay very close attention to Point # 12... (and you can see some of my comments in red)


Eat breakfast in your wedding gown:  a guide to thrive on your wedding day

I’m no expert as I (thankfully) have only had one wedding – but here are some things that I learnt from my experiences as a bride.

1. Take a calculated risk

Like you, I got married in South Africa but planned the entire wedding from the UK via email and phone. I rocked up at our wedding venue (the White House) in Plettenberg Bay just four days before the wedding. It turned out okay!

2. Get expert help
The best thing I could have done (apart from marrying my brilliant husband) was to get a wedding planner. She advised me on everything from flowers to the taxi service our guests could use. During the reception when I broke a glass, Jayne was there as it hit the ground, swept it up and give me a new one *ta da*. Her sturdy elbow was there as I was about to topple off the chair after the garter was thrown into the crowd and everyone was looking away. 

3. Put your foot down

Don’t be afraid to ask for things to be a certain way on your day. Don’t worry about coming across all Bridezilla…people will generally accommodate you seeing as it is a once-in-a- lifetime kind of situation. Looking back I wish I had stood my ground on a few tiny things that niggled me, but was too timid. Be bold!

4. Don’t take yourself too seriously. 

We commissioned a proudly South African bead craft cake topper, street-side style. It wasn’t quite what I had in mind but there was no time to fix it. So we laughed. Everyone laughed. I love the beaded MacDonalds :)
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 5. Plan to make memories.
Through every grueling interval training class I did three times a week for months in the run-up to our wedding, what got me through the pain was the vision of myself walking down the aisle in my gorgeous dress to the tune of ‘She’ by Elvis Costello played by a live saxophone. It remains one of my favourite memories from the day.

6. Do it your way

When it came to organising boutonnieres, the mere thought of a carnation wrapped up with baby’s breath in that green tape made me gag. We had a beach theme so I bought brooch pins and stuck them onto seashells. The groom, parents, and groomsmen each had a unique handmade brooch – it worked a treat.
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 7. Let others do the worrying
The day before our wedding, we realised with horror that we would not be able to have the romantic beach wedding ceremony and say our vows under the driftwood and seashell canopy like we had carefully planned. The weather had turned on us. It was a metaphor for marriage: weather the storms by being open to change. I decided to let it go and leave it up to other people to sort out (this is very unlike me – I’m such a control freak). Instead I went for a massage. Thanks to my genius wedding planner, organisational legend of a maid of honour and quick-thinking husband, a beautiful tent was erected in the courtyard right next to our reception venue. It was a delightful surprise to arrive at the ceremony to see how everyone had made it come together so wonderfully. We made such sweet lemonade!
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8. Take time out

The best advice I ever got was to take 10 minutes during your wedding day to have a chat and a glass of champagne with your husband away from everyone else. Try to squeeze this in after or during your photo session. It’s lovely just to touch base because the day has many distractions – take a deep breath and smile at each other and drink it all in…

9. Remember your family and your heritage
On the back of our order of service we printed our family tree. It was wonderful to have a visual representation of two lineages coming together. I loved paying tribute to our ancestors in this way and it made for an interesting topic of conversation among the guests. (such a lovely idea!)
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 10. Be funny
We let our hair down at the photoshoot after the serious ceremony. It was so much fun! Also, I didn’t get a fancy wedding car to take me to the venue. I figured that nobody would see me arrive anyway and couldn’t justify the expense. So I got a sliver combi taxi for me and my four bridesmaids, maid of honour and mother-in-law. As we piled into the taxi and I put on my seatbelt (I got to sit in the front of course!) I told the driver to please take me to the airport.

11. Trust the tradition

As chaotic as things may seem, they will all come together. People will want to help you and will go out of their way to be nice to you. Everyone will tell you that you look amazingly-beautiful-stunningly-gorgeous…take the compliments!

12. Get a little bit crazy

We had an after party. We had planned to have it on the beach with drums and 40 sky lanterns. It bloody rained. So in true Rhodes style we took it back to our guest house, drummed and drank Patron and Pongrácz (yes in that order).
(Rhodes wedding - FTW!*) We also brought back what remained of our amazing wedding cake (which was a cupcake tower). It was at about 2:30am when somebody (we all know who it was!) threw the first cupcake. Within 15 minutes the tiled floor was covered in the most slippery buttery layer. Everyone did at least one face plant on that sugary ice-rink. Blue. Icing. Everywhere. In clothes, in hair, on face. Those who took part still fondly remember this part of our wedding. The clean-up operation was epic.

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(i'd have to say that your miserable weather 
makes these pics look so awesome and dramatic! 
Ain't nobody else got dramatic-beachy pics like that!)

13. Dress for success

My wedding gown was the most expense dress I’ve ever bought (and possibly ever will). I wanted to get the most wear out of it. So it survived the after party and there I was at 10 the next morning, at the breakfast table eating a muffin, still wearing it.
(i will TOTALLY be doing this: Smashing a giant breakfast burger in. my. face. in le wedding dress. And, FYI Warren, I will probably wear my wedding dress every day of my honeymoon too.) When I finally slipped out of it, every rib in my ribcage popped out of the whale-boned bodice with relief...
14. Shun convention

Between the two of us my husband and I have four left feet. After one awkward dance lesson we made the executive decision not to attempt a YouTube-worthy dance-off but rather have a first dance shuffle to Jason Mraz ‘I’m Yours’. With no pressure to rehearse steps, we could just relax and be in the moment. 

15. Don’t compare

You will go to other weddings after yours. Never compare your wedding to them. No matter how tempting. Even if that happy couple manage to pull of the perfect beach wedding that you planned to have but couldn’t because of the weather. When your wedding is over, embrace it with all its tiny flaws, venue changes and imperfections – it’s yours for keeps. 
My final word of advice is not to wrap your satin wedding shoes in a Checkers packet at the bottom of your suitcase while you’re on honeymoon. They will go MOULDY and have PERMANENT black spots. 


Thank you so much for the awesome tips Marita - I can only HOPE to be as calm as you the day before the wedding!

You can read more great stories on Marita's blog and you can follow her on twitter here.

* I'd just like to say... I am an old Rhodes student, Warren is an old Rhodes student...

Our entire 8-person bridal party as well as half the wedding guests are all old Rhodes students....

I'm packing a shower cap.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

{Printable} Easter Box Freebie

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Easter is fast approaching and things have been crazy with the wedding coming up so soon (6 April!!) I haven't had time to create anything new for Easter this year - but last year I created some printable Easter boxes which you can download print, construct and then fill with whatever tickles your fancy. I filled mine with mini Smartie Eggs and also some boiled eggs for the healthier breakfast-in-bed- version!

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Included in the Easter box download are some rabbit circle tags which you can use to stick onto jars, eggs or Easter cards, or even to tie up your Easter breakfast cutlery. Because who doesn't want Easter-Egg-n-Bacon-Breakfast-in-Bed served with pretty tied up cutlery?

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I also made a very quick and easy tutorial for making this Bunny Rabbit Facecloth which holds an Easter Egg - it's a really nice gift - if you want something that quick easy and practical. And all you need is a facecloth, scooby wire or pipe cleaners, an Easter egg and a couple of elastic bands.

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You can read the full blogpost here
which also has a link to the free download
Have fun!