Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Hen Weekend in Barcelona - Day 2
On Saturday morning, with some people feeling a little worse for wear than others we took the open top double decker bus tour of Barcelona. This is a great thing to do if you are short of time as the bus stops at all the main sights, there are two different routes and you can get on and off all day for 19 Euros.
Here are a few photos from the bus tour.
After the bus tour we all split off into little groups. Kirsteen, Lesley, Michelle, Ailsa and I got off in an area called Gracia, which was supposed to be bustling with lots of little restaurants and shops. Unfortunately it wasn't quite bustling, but we managed to find a few interesting little shops and we found a nice authentic place for lunch and a few glasses of vino.
Here's Lesley, Ailsa, Me and Michelle enjoying our lunch.
Gillian and Jenny also found some time for a quick refreshment.
After lunch we had a little wander around then got back on the bus to the Placa de Catalunya and fought our way through the Ramblas and back to the hotel.
That evening we gathered for some pre dinner Cava again in my room.
Here's a photo of Ailsa, Lesley, Michelle, me and Kirsteen.
and one of my Mum and I.
That evening we had a fantastic meal at a restuarant called Daps.
As we were dining on Spanish time, the meal finished at half past midnight. The lightweights of the party went back to the hotel while Jenny, Lesley, Kirsteen, Michelle and I went off to a strange nightclub called Razamataz. Not the best one I have been to, but we had a laugh and fell into bed just before 4am.
On Sunday we all got up for our buffet breakfast, had a wander around (at least for the less tired and hungover people) and then to the airport for our flight back to Edinburgh.
I had a wonderful weekend overall, but I feel extremely unhealthy after all the cava, wine, patata bravas, calamari, crisps and chocolate, so it's back on the straight and narrow now with a bit of a detox and lots of visits to the gym.
Labels: Hen Weekend
Hen Weekend in Barcelona - Day 1
On Friday 12 of us - Kirsteen, Ailsa, Lesley, Michelle, Gillian, Jenny, Sarah, my Mum, Gill, Auntie Caroline and Auntie Celia set off on my hen weekend to Barcelona, Spain. We flew from Edinburgh direct to Barcelona on a FlyGlobespan flight, which took only 2hrs and 20 minutes from Edinburgh.
Unfortunately my wee sister Karen couldn't make it. But she had a very good excuse - she was having a baby
On arrival at the airport I was made to wear this rather fetching tiara and veil which got me a few funny looks. Hopefully I will look better in the real one on the wedding day!
Michelle, Lesley and Kirsteen are looking a bit too cheerful for this time of morning.
We had a good flight and arrived at the Hotel Tryp Apolo
in the early afternoon. The hotel was nice and the rooms were a pretty good size.
As was to be the theme of this weekend, we started off with some lunch and an alcoholic refreshment. Since we were in Spain most of us had a large tankard of Sangria each.
Here is a photo of Michelle, Kirsteen and Ailsa as we wait for our first refreshment of the weekend.
and the three sisters - my Auntie Caroline, Mum and Auntie Celia.
After lunch we had a bit of a wander round the streets of Barcelona and visited a market which had amazing displays of fruit...
and pick n mix ...
In the evening we all gathered in my room for a few glasses of champagne and cava before heading out. Here's my Mum, Auntie Caroline and Gill enjoying a few Cavas.
and Jenny and Sarah
Everyone kindly gave me some pressies, which included handcuffs, 1913 guides to being a husband/wife, rubber gloves, more handcuffs, glow in the dark penis earrings (I decided not to wear them) and much more, including a rather handy "bun pincher"!
That evening we had a lovely meal at a resturant which I can't recall the name of (and have no photos to show for it) and finished off the evening with a rather large nightcap in the hotel bar. Spanish measures seem to be four times bigger than Scottish ones and the Drambuie took up half the glass.
Labels: Hen Weekend
Wedding Meal Tasting at the Balmoral Hotel
A couple of weeks ago Stuart and I went for the tasting of the wedding meal at the Balmoral Hotel. At the tasting you get to taste your chosen meal and the wine just to make sure you are happy with it. Unfortunately the Balmoral only includes a tasting of one meal, not two, so if you are unsure of what to choose, or you want to make a night out of it, then you will need to pay for the second meal. In my opinion this is a wee bit stingy, given the amount of money we are spending there, but we decided to pay for a second meal so we could make a night out of it as well.
The meal was at Hadrian's and we choose to tast the soup/melon for starter, chicken/salmon for the main course plus apple pie and ice cream/banana parfait for the dessert.
The meal was absolutely delicious and the service was great. The soup on the menu had actually been Cream of Asparagus, but we felt that a lot of people didn't like asparagus so asked if we could change it. Instead we chose Tomato and Lentil, which was lovely and we decided to go for this as our starter instead of the melon and fruit, which was also nice, but not as good as the soup. For our main course we chose Chicken in red wine sauce served with mash and veg and for the dessert we decided on the apple tart with ice cream. A nice hearty Autumn menu.
What surprised me was that we were given two full bottles of wine. We hadn't expected this, since only one meal was included, but we managed to almost polish both of them off all the same, despite the fact that we had also drunk almost a whole bottle of red wine before leaving the house (argh!). The wine was also very good - an Italian Pinot Grigio and a Spanish Crianza.
After the meal we were given coffee/tea and enough chocolates and mini shortbreads for 6 people. I made a mental note to myself that I must not eat the full meal on the wedding day, otherwise I will have a risk of bursting out of my dress or at least being unable to breath properly!
Overall we are very happy with the food and I feel confident that the food and the service will be excellent on the day.
Labels: Edinburgh Wedding Venues
Monday, September 24, 2007
My New Baby Niece
Ok, so this has nothing to do with wedding planning, but my wee sister Karen just had a baby girl on Thursday 20th September. Her name is Emma and she is 9lbs and 8 ounces.
Here is a photo of her, isn't she gorgeous?
I'm just back from my hen weekend in Barcelona so I will write about that and put some Barcelona pics on my blog tomorrow.
Monday, September 17, 2007
Readings for our Wedding Ceremony
At the weekend we decided upon the readings for our wedding ceremony. We decided on a reading about Love and a poem about marriage. My two great friends Michelle and Kirsteen are going to be doing the readings.
What Is Love?
Sooner or later we begin to understand,
that love is more than verses on valentines
and romance in the movies.
We begin to know that love is here and now,
real and true, the most important thing in our lives.
For love is the creator of our favourite memories
and the foundation of our fondest dreams.
Love is a promise that is always kept,
a fortune that can never be spent,
a seed that can flourish
in even the most unlikely of places.
And this radiance that never fades,
this mysterious and magical joy,
is the greatest treasure of all
one known only by those who love.
A marriage is a promise that two hearts gladly make.
A promise to be tender, to help, to give and take.
A marriage is a promise to be kind and understanding, to be thoughtful and
considerate, fair and undemanding.
A marriage is a promise to share one life together.
A love filled promise meant to be kept lovingly forever.
Lets hope I don't cry :-)
Labels: Civil Ceremony
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Wedding Invitations have been sent
I actually sent the invitations out last week, but forgot to mention it. It is a pretty time consuming task, especially when you realise how many peoples' addresses and/or postcodes you don't actually have.
We also wanted to enclose some information about the venue, transport, a map, accommodation etc, so this all took time too. I think it is good to send out your invitations about 6-8 weeks in advance of the wedding to give everyone a good amount of time to reply. We managed to send ours out 7 weeks ahead so I am feeling quite organised about that.
Here is a photo of my dining room last week while I was writing out all the invites.
Our lovely invitations were ordered from Ebay
from "Cherish Invitations" and are on cream card tied with a burgandy chiffon ribbon.
I am feeling pretty good now with yet another thing ticked off that huge list.
Labels: Wedding Invitations
Friday, September 14, 2007
Dying the Shoes for the Bridesmaids
Well, I had not really had anything go wrong so far in the wedding preparation, up until now. All I can say to anyone who is thinking of getting shoes dyed for their bridesmaids is: don't buy your shoes from BHS (British Home Stores).
As you may know, I have three bridesmaids and a couple of months back I bought them all some nice looking bridal shoes from BHS for £22 each. The shoes were ivory coloured and BHS said that they were dyable.
I sent them away to a place in Newcastle to get dyed and they phoned me up almost immediately to tell me that they had had problems with dying some BHS shoes in the past in dark colours - they had either gone a lighter shade or patchy, what did I want to do? I decided to go ahead with the shoe dying anyway, as I couldn't think of any alternative, but unfortunately they have now come back looking quite different from the colour of the dresses :-(
The shoe dying place sent me a piece of material that they had dyed to the same colour as my bridesmaid dress swatch to prove that the problem was with the shoes and not their colour mixing and it was quite obvious that the problem was with the shoes as they had matched the colour almost perfectly.
So it is now getting closer to the time of the dress fittings for the bridesmaids so I am going to have to think of a solution pretty quickly. The plan is to go into Berketex with Kirsteen tomorrow just to check that whether or not there is any remote chance that the shoes will go with the dresses. If not, then we will trail round all the shoe shops in Edinburgh in the hope of finding some matching shoes. If that doesn't work I could buy shoes from the place that dyed the shoes and know that they would be able to match the colour in this case.
Come back for an update soon...
Labels: Wedding Accessories
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Growing Your Nails for the Wedding
I'v always been envious of people with lovely nails and hands. You know - long slim fingers, long perfectly manicured nails with a french polish. Unforunately I have never had long slim fingers or long nails. I don't bite them, but they always seem to break when they have reached the length of being slightly longer than my fingers :-(
I am dreaming of having nice long nails for the wedding. I can't do much about the fingers, but after a bit of research I have found that there are a few options for my nails.
While getting a manicure at Zen I asked for some tips for growing my nails. They recommended a cuticle oil, rubbed in to my cuticles daily. I am using Essie Apricot Cuticle oil
, which I bought from the salon for about £7. They also recommended something called Nail Envy by OPI
. Basically you paint on two coats of nail envy onto your nails. It is just like clear nail varnish, so it looks nice. Each day you then paint another coat on to your nails and then at the end of the week remove it and start again.
I have been doing the cuticle oil and the nail envy thing now for a couple of weeks and I can really notice the difference. My nails look nicer and also seem harder. I am going to keep going with this and if all else fails and I still have short nails a couple of weeks before the wedding I may consider gel tips or something similar.
Nail Envy can be bought in Boots for around £15, but I managed to get it on Ebay for £9 including postage. You can do a search for nail envy
on Ebay here.
If you aren't a member of Ebay already you can register on eBay
Another reason why nails may break easily is lack of magnesium. From what I could work out it seems quite hard to get your full quota of magnesium into your diet, so I am taking a vitamin and mineral supplement to cover that.
Hopefully my efforts will pay off and I will have nice nails for the wedding!
Labels: Wedding Beauty
Tuesday, September 04, 2007
My Wedding Dress has arrived
I just received a letter from Berketex to let me know that my wedding dress has now arrived!
This then caused me to have a dream about going for the fitting only to discover that the dress was black, rather than white - argh!! I'm not quite sure what my subconscious was trying to tell me, but I'm pretty sure they don't do black wedding dresses - at least not in Berketex.
Luckily I have been on a bit of a fitness drive, so I have lost enough inches everywhere and I am now smaller than the dress (being bigger than the dress is not an option as they can only alter it in the way). I still want to lose at least another 7 pounds before the end of September, but I seem to be on a bit of a weight loss plateau at the moment despite going to the gym four or five times a week.
Anyway, to test out the theory that writing down your goals, makes them more likely to happen, I have written down on a postit note -
"I will lose 7 pounds by the 27th September"
And I am writing it here again for extra effect :-)
The 27th September happens to be my first fitting for the wedding dress. I need to go in to Berketex with my bridal underwear, shoes and get measured in the dress. They will then pin the dress into place and I will have a final fitting a week or two before the big day.
More on wedding dress fittings later...
Labels: Wedding Dresses, Wedding Weight Loss
Monday, September 03, 2007
My Wedding To Do List with less than 2 months to go
Long time no write!
I have been trying to make a post to this wedding diary every week and just realised that it has almost been a month since my last post - argh!
I have been pretty busy over the last month - I have left my work, I am starting my own business, I've been on lots of training courses, I've been setting up my new computer and lots of other things. In the meantime I have neglected the wedding diary a bit.
It is now less than 8 weeks until the big day!! I can't believe it. My to do list was looking quite achievable and short until I started to think about it all in more detail.
I thought it would be helpful to make a list of what I still had to do as this may be helpful to other people at the same stage in their wedding planning. Perhaps you are more organised than I am and have already done most of this?
Here is the list - the wedding is October 27th
- Write and Send Wedding Invitations (by 7th September)
- Decide on readings for the ceremony (by 15th September)
- Have tasting of wedding breakfast and decide on menu (by 15th September)
- Finish adding gifts to gift list (by 15th September)
- Collect wedding rings (September)
- Buy bridal underwear (September)
- Decide on song for first dance (by end of September)
- Decide on music for ceremony (by end of September)
- Submit M10 forms and payment to registry office (by end of September)
- Write/Decide on wording for ceremony and vows (by end of September)
- Fitting for wedding dress and bridesmaid's dresses (September/October)
- Ensure all final payments are made (September/October)
- Fill favour boxes (October)
- Make favours/goodie bags for kids (October)
- Have a bridal hair trial (October)
- Have a bridal makeup trial (October)
- Decide on photos required (October)
- Do seating plan (October)
- Finalise details with hotel (October)
- Buy gifts for attendants (October)
- Lose another half stone (asap) :-)
So what was originally a short list of 5 or 6 things has now ballooned!
That's all for just now as I need to go and start knocking things of this list :-) I will be posting again very soon this time!
Labels: Wedding Planning