2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 7,900 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 13 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

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… and I’m married!

Today is the first day of our pseudo-honeymoon/family vacation!

A Monday that will not stink as much as the typical one!

haha! that is the best name I had for it right now. I wanted to keep you up to date with everything that we will be doing this week, so here is the run-down for Monday:

We will start the day off at EPCOT. Yes, we were there last night, but we were sort of busy stuffing ourselves with all of the delicious desserts. We didn’t see much of anything!

Today we will enjoy some of our favorites! Kevin (actually, the entire Gessler family) is super excited to ride the newly reopened Test Track! A little birdy told us that they should have it open even though it doesn’t have an ‘official’ Grand Opening until the 6th. I will enjoy making my parents watch Captain EO, and know that my dad will LOVE the Living with the Land Boat Tour just as much as I do! (Its all about gardening and agriculture!, so most people probably think it is super boring!) Everyone will enjoy visiting Disneyland in California on Soarin’ Before we take a trip around the world at the World Showcase! We will do tons and tons of other things, but I surely won’t miss a chance to get a picture taken with Stitch!

I have a picture with Stitch during every single trip to Disney World that I’ve ever been on!

Check out everything to do at EPCOT!

After a full day at EPCOT, we will make our way over to Magic Kingdom park to watch the Electrical Parade, and then catch the showing of Wishes! If we’re lucky they’re doing Celebrate the Magic before Wishes!

This is going to be a LONG week, but how can you complain when you’re spending it at the most magical place on earth?

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… and this is it!

Today is THE day.

Today is the day that I have imagined for as long as I can remember.

Only… I honestly think it is very different than what I imagined.

I mean, some things are pretty standard, right?

Cinderella meets Prince Charming.

There is a white dress.

And They Lived Happily Ever After.

Yup, I’ve got all of that, but I also have SO much more than I ever could have imagined.

I am still a little in shock, really. Whirlwind romance when each of us least expected it, perfect engagement (unless you count that whole ‘me messing it up’ stuff), and Fairy-Tale (literally) wedding. Whoa.

Today means more to me than you could ever imagine. It means so much because it is my best attempt to epitomize the love that I have for Kevin into one day. A party. A celebration of our love. Unfortunately, even the magic that we’ve put together won’t be enough to express that. I don’t know that anything could compare. We’ve discussed it, and we’re kind of looking at the entire deal not as “what changes now that we’re married” because there probably isn’t much… instead we’re looking at this as a celebration with our favorite people in our favorite place.

Let me give you a run down of the day:

  1. Limos will bring us to the Walt Disney World Wedding Pavilion.
  2. We get married. (applause)
  3. We will take photos on the beach then
  4. Limos transport us to The Grand Floridian Resort and Spa.
  5. We have a private terrace balcony that overlooks the Seven Seas Lagoon (and Cinderellas Castle). We will do a cake cutting, have a toast, and our first dance.
  6. The limos will transport us to The Boardwalk Inn for photos.
  7. Then we’re off to The Treehouse Villas where we will have a casual dinner and drinks.
  8. After dinner, a mini-motorcoach (party-bus) picks up the entire group to transport us backstage to EPCOT. We will have an escort (yes, you need a ‘handler’ for your group. Disney requires it if you’re in a gown. Plus, we get to skip any lines.) to take us to the Moroccan Terrace to watch the IllumiNations fireworks show. Since we’ve already had dinner we will be having a dessert buffet.
  9. After the show we get to go out the backstage exit, and the motor coach will drop everyone off at their respective locations.

…And They Lived Happily Ever After

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… and a birthday party?!?!?!

yup, because that is just how we roll!

Today happens to be Daddy’s Birthday, and Mom’s isn’t far behind! (She celebrates on Dec. 5th)

I’ve been just a little sneaky by not mentioning their birthdays once. I haven’t acknowledged them, or the fact that we would be in Disney World for them. They probably think I am the worst daughter ever, right?!?!?!? Bridezilla over here! I am convinced that they think that I’ve gotten caught up in the Fairy Tale world and have forgotten their special days. No way!

I will quickly acknowledge the birthdays this morning as we have coffee. I plan to say something like “I’m really sorry that I got so busy with everything else that I didn’t even remember a card for your special days!”

I’ve called ahead (months ago) and Disney knows that we’re celebrating birthdays. We have “I’m Celebrating” and “Happy Birthday” pins waiting, a card from Mickey and Minnie (of course), and we’re having a birthday cake delivered (thanks, Meredith!). I even have presents and special ‘Disney Themed’ birthday cards. We’re having the party outside at the resort.

This should be okay for a birthday party, right?
Photo courtesy of http://www.orlandosentinel.com

I hate to have been so mean in keeping it a secret, so I hope it turns out to be a real surprise!

Later tonight we’re going to explore the area a little, and visit all of the area hotels for the Gingerbread Tours that I mentioned before! Disney also has a pretty amazing blog post completely devoted to Gingerbread if you have the time to check it out!

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… and we’re on the road!

Yup! We are headed to good ole Orlando! … well, kinda.

Actually, we’re on the road to Hilton Head, South Carolina!

Yesterday, (after our mani-pedis) I went to the airport to pick up a rental van. (Yes, we have a van. I skipped straight from bride to soccer mom! Hey, we’ve got a lot of stuff to take!)

My parents got into town, and we got the van loaded! Boy, we didn’t have as much space as I thought… and had wayyyyy more to squeeze in than I thought!

We will crash on the beach for the night, and then get on the road to Orlando bright and early tomorrow!

This is where we will be spending the night!

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… and even presents?!?!?!

I honestly have to say that I may be one of the luckiest people on the planet. I am surrounded by some super amazing people, and that is what I’ve been thankful for all month long. (No, I wasn’t boycotting the sharing all of the amazing things that I’m grateful for all over facebook… but I have far more than 30, AND I just didn’t have time.)

This past week I was shocked to receive a wedding gift. The gifts and warm wishes kept coming all week, and I am just baffled that so many amazing people pay enough attention to what is going on to know the timeline and theme for our wedding. I am one lucky girl.

Our first gift was on Thanksgiving. Kevin’s Aunt Pam and Uncle Jim got us an amazing Lenox Christmas Ornament (see below) and Lenox Crystal Vase that was etched to read ‘Amy & Kevin December 2, 2012’ (I’m scared to do anything but look at the box for fear of breaking it). Kevin’s cousin Michael and his wife Jenny also gave us a lovely card and gift.

“Its etched, you’ve gotta go through with it now.”

On Sunday, I went to make dinner for Adrienne, Chris, Kevin, and Tim. Right after dinner, Adrienne gave me a beautiful vintage Mickey and Minnie snowglobe. Unfortunately, I forgot it at her house, and can’t find a picture of it online. The bottom says, “And They Lived Happily Ever After” and it has a 50’s style Mickey and Minnie inside.

While I was over at Adrienne’s, one of my staff members sent me a text message. “We have something for you.” I thought someone may have sent me some leftover Thanksgiving treats or something. My mind was blown when they showed me an AMAZING wreath that was peacock themed. A big thank you needs to go out to Hilari and Jordan for carrying it, but more importantly to the DIY-Sisters, Hobby-Bobbi and Crafty-Jackie, (better known to their families as Bobbi Cooper and Jackie Barton). Not only will it be awesome at our wedding receptions, but it will look amazing to reuse every winter.

This is my happy face.
Isn’t this wreath amazing?

Today I got a couple of gifts. Alexis sent me an amazing “Car Survival Kit” to help me on the Road Trip to Orlando. The bag has everything from bottled water, chapstick, gum, and snacks to coloring and activity books (Disney Princess, of course). Alexis is already giving me the best gift anyone could. The peace of mind that Daisy and the kitties are taken care of. We usually pawn them off on Kevin’s mom, but since she is going to be at the wedding… I need someone I can trust with my critters. Alexis is willing to stay at our house and deal with everything. For that I’m eternally grateful.

It also has a sleep mask, ear plugs, and even a stocking!

I also received a gift from a (very thoughtful) fellow bride, Samantha. She delivered an invitation to her wedding at the exact same time, so I am just impressed that she remembered that other people exist while planning her wedding… let alone that I’m getting married, too! Sam gave me a beautiful Hallmark Mickey Collector’s Ornament. She also got us Mickey Thank You Notes and Disney Stamps. Leave it to another bride to realize just how much you need thank you notes come this stage of a wedding. You think she will be disappointed if I send her a thank you note on the gift she gave me? 😉

Mickey Cards, Stamps, and Ornament!

Yup, I’m pretty lucky. Gift or no gift, I have so many people sending me warm wishes and congratulating me. I sure do know some awesome people.

Now if I can just get people to stop asking:

“So I bet you’re really nervous now, huh?”

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… and I’m back!

Okay, I know that I haven’t blogged in more than a month.

I get it.

I stink.

I’ve been very busy with work, life, … oh, and a little wedding that is THIS WEEKEND!

I will keep you up to date in real-time with blog posts on everything!

Sit back, tune in, and prepare for this shendig to rock your socks!


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… and a Princess Bride

Mawwiage is what bwings us togethew today.
Mawwiage, that bwessed awwangement, that dweam within a dweam.
And wove, twue wove, wiww fowwow you fowevah and evah…
So tweasuwe youw wove

I bet you thought I was calling myself a Princess Bride, huh? INCONCEIVABLE!!!

This week is all about neat dates! The first of the month happened to fall on Monday (a symbolic fresh start — if you will), yesterday was the TWO MONTH mark until our wedding, today is October 3rd (If you don’t get this… please go watch Mean Girls… stat), and a celebratory day for the entire cult following of the 1987 film The Princess Bride.

A must see!

The Princess Bride has been around for 25 years now! This quirky fairy-tale makes for a great evening in. With this weather… why not? Grab yourself a blanket, some hot tea, the fuzziest pajamas you can find, and enjoy this silly movie! You can get your 25th Anniversary Edition copy of The Princess Bride at amazon.com.

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…and a curse?

If you have a little Amy Bride voodoo doll out there that you’re sticking pins in…

feel free to stop

… no, seriously.

For a while now I’ve been joking with Kevin that our wedding is cursed! (Please note that in deciding it was cursed I didn’t even factor in the disaster that was our engagement or ANY of the Say Yes to the Dress Drama)

It all started when we were just a few months in, and got a new wedding planner. Disney Fairytale Weddings and Honeymoons are going through some staffing changes, and many of their employees are moving around. It was fine. I barely knew the other wedding planner, and we hadn’t done much… so no biggie!  Our new planner was super organized, friendly, and helpful. Things were good, and we got moving on the planning stuff!

A great deal goes into planning a wedding that is 1000 miles from home, but I felt like we had worked nearly every detail out between the planner and I: We know what the organist and violinist are playing when I walk down the aisle. We know what the violinist is playing for our first dance. We know what flavors the cake is, the topper, and the design. We know the timeline for the day. We know that while a limo is taking us to and from the ceremony we are then switching to a party bus and town car to get everyone from dinner to the dessert party. We know where everyone is staying on site. We know that I have a custom aisle runner that must be placed before the ceremony. We know what floral changes I’ve made. We know that I have two separate photography companies. We know that I have a special menu for the dessert party, and where we are in EPCOT. … You get where I’m going here?  WE had done a lot, and there was a lot to know!

Now, chronologically… I have to pause the wedding planner story to also tell you a few of the other reasons that I thought we may have a curse: As you may know, I am engaged to Jack Skellington himself. Kevin is quite tall, and is also very slender for his frame. This results in him having odd sizes in lots of clothing. By the time we get his wrists covered and his shoulders aren’t ripping the shirt, his waist looks like he could stuff a VW Beetle in there.  J.CREW just happened to have a killer sale, and we found an AMAZING deal on the suit that he is set on wearing to the wedding. (Yeah, we’re not tux people…)

Won’t Kevin be so fetching in this? He has a vest, but I’m still trying to persuade him toward considering suspenders!


Problem is: the sale was online… so he wasn’t able to try it on. Our solution: buy the pants unhemmed, and have the vest and jacket taken in. What I didn’t realize: finding a good tailor is apparently quite difficult. (I keep thinking of the Friends episode where Joey sends everyone to his tailor!) We finally found someone that came well recommended, and I made time to stop in to set something up. When I did so I found out that the gentleman working on the suit had passed away! Talk about eerie! I hid my shock, and politely sent my condolences to the family. Yup, things are not going as planned here!

Kevin and I got our wedding bands ordered this summer. Because my engagement ring was custom, the wedding band had to be made to fit up against the engagement ring. I also wanted to have the bands engraved with a word and our wedding date. Since our wedding date is unique in that it is almost a palindrome… I wanted the date to read: 12.02.2012. I guess I stressed the “zero two” part a little too much. Kevin picked up the rings early in September and dropped them off to me. I automatically noticed that they had been engraved with the wrong date. It read “12.20.2012”. OOPS!

The rings basically look like this, but there had to be a couple diamonds added to the center part that cradles the engagement ring’s center stone so that it fit inside the little notch there.

A week or so later, I got an email from our planner letting us know that she was accepting another position, and introducing us to her replacement. I thought: “This can’t be good.” I even jokingly made a facebook post in which I insinuated it was me running them all off.

Here’s the thing… I know what you’re thinking: I probably shouldn’t even be writing this blog, right? I mean… it’s like saying, “Boy, things could not get worse!” I’ve always said that when you say something like that, the universe says, “Challenge accepted.” The thing is, though, it is just funny to make jokes about it. It helps to make things less stressful to just laugh about them. We are nearing the time that I was about ready for my hair to fall out in preparation for this shindig… and I feel remarkably calm compared to where I figured I would be. Now, I surely have prewedding jitters and still cry anytime I see anyone getting married (in real life or on t.v.)… but I’m keeping it together. Day-by-day and piece-by-piece… it is all coming together, and I’m happy. I have so much to be grateful for… and making jokes about the little bumps on the road helps me to remember just how lucky I am.

We’re incredibly lucky! Our new wedding planner had ‘researched’ our wedding and had studied up on everything! By the time I met her she was as up-to-date as I was and even reminded me of a few things that I still needed to do! The new tailor that we found is a wonderfully sweet woman that has been nothing but accommodating of our busy schedules, does great work, and is cheaper than most in the area. I even took her my reception dress to have the back taken out and rebuilt! (Imagine me explaining to Kevin that I wanted a custom dress redone to be ‘more customized’…HELLO, laces leave a little more ‘wiggle room’ than a zipper!) The jewelers were incredibly helpful (and apologetic) and are redoing the rings with no fuss at all! We still have plenty of time to have them redone… and it even leaves us time to get the rings sized if need be (mine was a bit snug once it sat against the other). Heck, everything is going well! I’ve had THREE of my bridesmaids start new jobs in the last couple of months, and one is about to welcome a new member to her family.

Kevin and I are lucky. We are blessed with wonderful family and friends that support us, we’ve worked with some awesome people throughout this planning, and as long as we’re married at the end of all of this… then we got what we were looking for. I’ll be perfectly content.

Sometimes it takes something bad happening

to remind you just how great things are!


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and it’s crunch time… literally.

Thought you might enjoy this text message as much as I did.
Now before anyone thinks we’re promoting negative body image or anything else…

just know it was only a joke.

We realized it was 3 months until the wedding, and we needed to get our butts in gear!


thanks for the laugh!

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