wedding

Wedding video

One year ago, I made the best and easiest decision of my life by marrying Mike! He fills my life with the perfect mix of joy, sincerity, goofiness, affection and accountability. Sometimes I think about how different my life would be if I hadn’t been on match.com on the same week he was. It’s amazing how your entire life can depend on such random coincidences.

In honor of our one year anniversary, I’m reposting our wedding video. Sam June did such an incredible job on this video. I could watch it every day ūüôā My favorite part is toward the end when all of our friends are dancing. It’s a treasure to have this beautifully edited time capsule of one of the best moments in our life.

Tracy & Mike’s Wedding Feature Film – Full Moon Resort from Arius Photo on Vimeo.

When I was in elementary school we had to give a presentation on our wish for the world. My wish was that everyone has a best friend. As an adult, my wish is that everyone can find a partner who is their best friend.

Wedding Fairy Godmother

Do you ever feel like there’s someone eavesdropping on your conversation with the express purpose of making your day? Right before the wedding, I was talking to someone who just got married and she told me that I’d really regret not getting a videographer for the event. I looked it up online and the costs were just too expensive for a last-minute addition.

The next day, my amazing photographer, Elizabeth Unterman, wrote to me to ask if we’d let her friend film our wedding. For real?!? Samantha June from Arius Photo¬†did such an incredible job. I have never seen so much energy and spirit caught on film. Every time I watch the video I feel like I’m right back at the wedding. I cannot believe we almost passed up on getting a video, and the only piece of advice I’d give any bride-to-be is GET A GREAT VIDEOGRAPHER! And if you live in the New York area GET SAMANTHA JUNE!

Now enjoy the world’s best wedding video:

Tracy & Mike’s Wedding Feature Film – Full Moon Resort from samantha june on Vimeo.

 

Something was Brewing before the Wedding

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As soon as we got engaged, Mike wanted to brew beer for our wedding. We gave out these bottles as an overnight gift to some of our guests. Beware, this project is awesome but it takes at least a month of prep. First collect beer bottles, remove all labels, and sterilize them:

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We got our beer making kits from Brooklyn Brewshop. You can order from them online – the kits come with the raw ingredients for one gallon of beer. We went with Spicy Saison, Rye IPA and Maple Porter Stout. The first stage of making beer is a lot like making oatmeal…with a thermometer.

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Then there’s a complicated process of separating the cooked grains (mash) from the liquid (wort). The wort is what will become alcoholic thanks to the miracle yeast. Mike is a weirdo and likes to eat the mash – we call it “manmeal,” and it’s absolutely disgusting.

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Keep the wort in a cool place, out of direct sunlight. Let it ferment for about a week. You need to hook it up to a special pipe that lets air bubbles out, but doesn’t let air in.

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Make sure to label all the gallons right away, because they all start to look the same after a while.

2013-01-27 12.15.10When the bubbling has subsided (after about 5-6 days) move the jugs to a cool dark place. Store it there for another week. Now you’re ready to bottle! We bought our labels from My Own Labels. The hardest part of the process was coming up with the names. Mike gets all the credit here: he came up with “I Do” brew, and he based the different names on songs

Rye IPA was called “Rye me to the Moon” based on Fly me to the Moon

Maple¬†Porter Stout was called “Maple Stout Put your Hands up” based on the Isley brothers You Make me Want to Shout.

Spicey Saison was called “Saisons of love” after Rent’s Seasons of Love.

2013-02-23 17.40.39But beer isn’t complete without some snack mix. I found this delicious¬†recipe¬†from The DIY Wedding¬†(I’d highly recommend this book. My friend gave it to me after her wedding, and I just passed it on to my next friend who will be getting married). Is uses about every packaged good from the grocery store. Warning, if you’re trying to lose weight before the wedding have someone else make this because you won’t be able to resist it ūüôā

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Other gifts we came up with for our overnight guests: journals and writing games for my friends who are writers, mini bottles of bourbon distilled in the Hudson Valley , and fancy chocolate bars.

A Meeting in the Snow

Our wedding photographer, Elizabeth Unterman, had the brilliant idea of capturing the moment when Mike and I first saw each other on our wedding day. I know you’re supposed to wait for the big reveal on the aisle, but I loved having this intimate moment before the ceremony. It was a reminder that the wedding was about our love, and not pomp and circumstance.

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My lovely bridesmaids helped keep my dress out of the snow. I had to wear my favorite boots!

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I could hear his heart beating ūüôā

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My friend’s face is priceless.

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Tracy_and_Mike_Wedding_122Seeing each other before the wedding didn’t take anything away from walking down the aisle. I highly recommend it!

Crafty Wedding Favors

Mike and I were racking our brains trying to come up with party favors for our wedding guests. I didn’t want to waste money on a little tchotchke that everyone would throw out, but I also didn’t want to break the bank on a more significant gift. While I love the idea of making a donation to charity in honor of my guests, I also wanted to give my guests something sentimental that they can hold onto.

At four in the morning I woke up with this idea:

Name cards that were actually books which included lyrics from our first song, the recipes for the cookies we served, and pictures of us.

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Mike said I was crazy and that it would take too much time. He was right, but it was totally worth it. I loved making this books, and I love seeing them in my friend’s bookcases when I visit their homes ūüôā Mission accomplished!

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There were really simple to make but super tedious. I suggest enlisting a team of friends to help you. First I printed, cut and hole punched each of the booklets.

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I used thicker mason board for the covers. You can get this at most craft or office supply store. I used block stamps to mark everyone’s name on each cover. I kind of liked all the little imperfections.

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Then I just used twine to tie them all together. I originally wanted to Japanese Bind the books, but that would have taken way too much time and sanity.2013-02-20 20.02.36Marla was a huge help to me.

2013-02-07 14.01.13The whole project ended up costing about $3.50 a person (including ink, paper, and a special paper-cutter).

Vendor Appreciation

Before I start posting pictures of our wedding, I first have to give a huge thanks to the vendors that made the wedding so relaxed and fun.

The Venue:

Full Moon Resort was the perfect site for our wedding. We wanted a place that was relatively close to NYC, but still felt really remote. Since there’s no cell service there people were forced to really take the weekend off. All of our guests stayed for the weekend in little cabins scattered all over the mountain. We had a BBQ and bonfire the night before the wedding which really set the tone for the weekend. Full Moon helped us plan everything down to the second so that I didn’t have to worry about anything on the day of the wedding. It was one of the main reasons why we had so much fun!

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Everyone kept asking us how we found the place, it felt so hidden, but the truth is it was the first venue we found when I did a google search for weddings in the Catskills. I looked at the website and knew it was perfect, but I kept looking just to be sure. When I realized that I was comparing everything else to Full Moon I knew it was the one.

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The flowers:

Jim Williams of Elderberry Flowers was a pleasure to work with. He made these delicate centerpieces that looked like wildflowers growing in the woods. I thought it fit the venue to a tee! He made certain that we were always on the same page and gave me great advice.

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The Rings:

We ordered these from James Christian on Etsy. I was a little worried about ordering our wedding rings online, but we wanted to buy directly from the artist. They were really good about expediting the delivery (because we kind of did it last minute). We inscribed the rings with lines from our wedding song, It’s Only Time by¬†The Magnetic Fields. Mine says “Walk your lands” and Mike’s says “Swim your seas.”

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Make up:

My friend, and bridesmaid, Mandi, did my make up. We spent a few weekends at Sephora picking out the rights shades and look. Ren, my other bridesmaid, was on hand for making jokes.

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It really felt like one big sleepover!

The Officiant:

Choosing an officiant was a no-brainer. I grew up going to Ethical Culture and the leader of our chapter, Bart Worden, has been a close family friend since I was a baby.  He gave us a beautiful personalized ceremony.

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The D.J.:

This was one of the only things Mike and I disagreed on: I can’t stand wedding bands – I don’t want to pay extra to hear the karaoke version of my favorite songs. Mike is a musician so of course he wanted to employ as many live musicians as possible. Eventually I won! Alex Mazur did such a great job. he really kept the energy up, and he played all the songs we requested (and none of the songs we hate).

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My hubby really knows how to move!

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No dance party is complete without props!

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The Cake Cookies:

Mike and I are big cookie fans. I could eat them for breakfast lunch and dinner. ¬†A special thanks to Mike’s mom and Aunt who baked over 300 cookies for the wedding! They were delicious. The best part was we could eat them while we were dancing. They even made us a giant cookie so we could do the traditional cutting ceremony.

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The Photographer:

Elizabeth Unterman was amazing at capturing every moment without ever getting in the way. She was so calming whenever we spoke on the phone and helped us get organized. I loved the creative pictures she took, as well as the photobooth we set up during the after party.

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Tracy & Mike Sayre's Wedding

We Are Licensed to Wed!!!

First thing this morning, Mike and I took a trip down to City Hall to get our marriage license. We were tired but excited!

Early morning trip to City Hall

Early morning trip to City Hall

We followed all the signs…

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I went through a phase where I was addicted to Ancestry.com. I loved looking at copies of my ancestor’s marriage certificates and imagining how they were feeling when they signed those forms. When I signed the form today, I couldn’t help but think of my future great, great-grandchildren looking at my signature. Hopefully this blog will still exist two hundred years from now and they’ll be able to know exactly how I was feeling today…giddy!

They even gave us an envelope. How thoughtful :)

They even gave us an envelope. How thoughtful ūüôā

It’s official…We’re getting married!

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Lessons from planning a wedding

This image shows a red wine glass.

I’ve been so busy wedding planning that I’ve little time for anything else (hence the 13 day hiatus from blogging). Until recently I’ve been really relaxed about the whole idea of the wedding, but now that it’s less than 2 months away it’s starting to get overwhelming. Things that would never have mattered to me before, like how many red wine options should our guests have, end up taking us a day of debating to decide upon. In the back of my head I know that it really doesn’t matter, and that when everything’s over and done I won’t care how many wine options there are, but in the moment of decision making everything seems so crucial.

Here’s one lesson that I’ve learned so far: Let someone else do the work!

One of the side effects of having an art background is that I think I can make anything. I really wanted to do all the floral arrangements for the wedding and make all the party gifts, create the playlists and decorate everything, but at the end of the day I had to accept that spending a little extra money to have someone else do it was far better for my sanity. It was so hard for me to hire a florist because I know I can make beautiful bouquets for a tenth of the price, but as soon as I hired someone I felt a huge relief that I would have one less thing to do. That relief was worth ten times the price ūüôā

As Roy Disney said, “It’s not hard to make decisions when you know what your values are.”¬†I want to enjoy my big day and have fun with all my friends and family, not be busy making everything perfect. This is something I tell myself on a daily basis and it helps me with all the decisions.

Please leave a comment with any other lessons you’ve learned from your wedding (or your friend’s weddings).

We’ll take two…make that six

 

Do you ever catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror and think, “I am such a stereotype?”

Last night Mike and I went to a Crate and Barrel wedding registry party. Even though I’ve dreamed of this moment since I first heard about Crate and Barrel, it was so hard to take it seriously. I felt like such a yuppie. We even dressed the part. And so did everyone else.

They gave us some snacks and drinks, then taught us how to use the scanner gun, and we off on our merry way.

There’s something so¬†bizarre¬†about registering for wedding gifts. A part of you feels like:¬†Wow we’re adults, we need to decide exactly how our adulthood is going to look – right down to the napkin holders.¬†

 

And then you realize that this milestone of adulthood is going to be paid for by others, which is about the most unadult-like thing you can do. Which made us really giddy.

Without the burden of having to pay for anything, we forgot all modesty and started adding everything we could get our greedy little paws on. “Sure we need a sausage grinder! In fact, lets get two.”

There were representatives from all the major appliance lines like Kitchenaid,¬†Cuisinart¬† and W√ľsthof. They asked us all these questions about our lifestyle as a couple, and I’m not going to lie to you, I felt the pressure to impress. To the knife company we said, “Oh I simply must have a good¬†serrated¬†knife. I bake bread every day and it’s so hard to find a good knife these days.” To the blender people we said, “Oh we make our own cat food, of course, so it’s very important that we find the right tool for grinding entire chickens.” To the popcorn machine sellers, “Does this come with a fluffer feature? I’m very concerned about my air-popped popcorn being extra airy.” With each statement about who we were as a couple, I could hear my voice sounding more and more¬†British, and my nose going higher and higher.

We couldn’t admit that we eat out most nights.

Now I know all of you are just dying to get us a gift (hahaha), so here’s our registry. It’s not much but we’ve been living together for over 3 years so it took a lot of effort to find things we still need.

Does anyone have any other suggestions for places to register? We thought about doing a smart registry (one where you ask for money for specific things like cocktails on your honeymoon, or the future toilet in your future first home), but I was shocked to see that those sites usually charge 7% commission for each gift.