Side Note: Sorry For Being MIA

Hey friends,

I just wanted to send out a quick note to apologize in advance for my lack of posting over the next week or two. With being under 10 days to the Big Day, I am on crunch-mode and that means all my evenings are taken with wedding preparation. I have a to-do list that is three pages long with new bullet points being added on an hourly basis — don’t want to forget anything!

Overall, I am not too stressed though. The day most likely will not go off 100% perfectly, but by this time in 9 days I’ll be the new Mrs. G and that’s all I truly care about. If you do wish to pray for sunny weather that Saturday, then I won’t stop you. 😉

Following June 16th, G and I will be heading down to Tennessee for our honeymoon. While in Gatlinburg, we have an amazing cabin overlooking Pigeon Forge (complete with bear accents, full kitchen, and a hot tub on the back porch) and plan to enjoy our first week as newlyweds exploring the beautiful scenery in Tennessee. Then we will continue Nashville for the weekend and celebrate down Broadway and with a show at the Grand Ole Opry.

I cannot believe I’ll be marrying this amazing man in less than ten days; I am truly one blessed girl.

So with that, I say adieu for a few weeks. I’ll be back to posting as soon as I return home and catch my breath. Promise!

xoxo, 

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One Month To Go + Wedding Survival Kit Giveaway

Hello, lovelies! My name is Ashley and I will be blessed to marry the best man in the world in ONLY ONE MONTH! I am beyond excited (and ready) for the wedding to be here, and in celebration of the date I am offering the first-ever Uncorking Peonies giveaway.

The giveaway is for a Wedding Survival Kit designed by yours truly. This kit, which is approximately $30 in value, includes the essentials needed for any bride-to-be on the day of her wedding. Why spend the time wandering the local convenience store for odds-and-ends when you could WIN this survival kit and have it delivered to your doorstep prior to your Big Day?

How to Enter to Win a Wedding Survival Kit:

Enter up to FIVE times to win a Wedding Survival Kit valued at $30!

Completing each task counts as ONE entry. The Winner will be announced on Friday, June 1, 2018 at 5pm EST and contacted to congratulate and celebrate!

The Winner will have 48 hours to respond before another contestant is chosen. 

Good luck, ladies! 

My Forever & Always

All the relationship advice in the world could not have made a difference in my past experiences of choosing the wrong men. As the saying goes, I was trying to hammer a square peg into a round hole. I would try to find happiness in the wrong relationships, changing myself or attempting to change my SO. I’d try to convince myself I felt a certain way or convince myself that the SO felt a certain way for me. Only to end in tears, heartache, and questioning what I did wrong, why I couldn’t seem to find the right fit, and why I couldn’t get the love I desired.

I spent so much time chasing after guys who wouldn’t or couldn’t give me what I wanted, and then wondered what was wrong with me. The problem was simple: I was choosing the wrong men. I fell for guys who felt right due to commonalities or adventure or chemistry or familiarity or even loneliness sometimes.

That was why my beginning with G was so unexpected. I was accustomed to either temporary relationships that would slip easily away or comfortable relationships where priorities were skewed. However, meeting G was a life-changing experience that has only gotten better with time.

G gave me all the right feelings from Day One.

He has made every effort to put me as his priority and has supported me in every trial, endeavor, and achievement along the way. He loves the person I am even as our personalities differ. He’s proud of me and proud to be with me. He is my calming voice during rages and my comforting home during sorrow. He is the reason I smile throughout the day. He fights for me even while we’re the ones fighting. He loves me deeply now and talks of materializing dreams with me in the future.

And I believe every single word he says with no reason of a doubt.

He is, in the simplest of terms, my Forever & Always.

Now, don’t roll your eyes. I am not saying I found the One. (I don’t believe anyone in this world has a “One.”) But I did find someone I liked and cared for and have a high degree of compatibility with in my little corner of the universe. I found someone who increases my happiness and makes me a better person. I found someone I want to do life with forever.

That doesn’t mean our relationship is flawless though. Neither G nor I found the One to make our futures perfect.

Bottom line: every relationship is a lot of work. G and I recognize this and are willing to commit to working on ourselves and our relationship for the remainder of our lives.

We know we will always be a work in progress.

And THAT is what makes all the difference!

G and I will continuously learn from one another, grow together, attempt to give the other our best, and forgive constantly when we falter. We’ve actively chosen to embrace every raw part of one another  — the good, the bad, and the ugly.

And that is how we move forward with the last 50 days of our engagement and the entirety of our marriage.

Thank you for choosing me to be your Forever & Always, G. I cannot wait to become your wife in only 50 days (HOW IS THIS A THING?!) and begin growing together as a married couple. I love you.

-A

Vendor News: Videography Decided

We have been going back and forth on the topic of videography since we solidified our budget five months ago, and some great questions are been risen: should we hire someone, should we buy a video camera, who would we have film everything, would a cellphone work just as well, won’t photographs be just as good, where could we place a camera rather than have someone hold one, who do we know that can edit, what fits our budget, where could we elope, etc. And we have finally decided on an answer! (Plus we’re proud to say discussion on elopement has dropped from 10 times daily to nearly three…)

We are going with the online videography option called WedIt. With WedIt, we will have five iPod Touches delivered to us the week of our wedding in which we can disperse among our guests, set up in special locations, or pretty much do what we would like with them in order to film/snapshot the important parts of our ceremony and reception. Then, once the wedding is over, we can either download all the pieces on our own in order to edit them or send them back to the company and have a edited video made for us. Though we aren’t sure exactly how we will edit the camera footage, we do feel this is a great option for us while trying to safe-keep memories without spending an arm and a leg on a professional videographer.

Thinking ahead, I plan to have two of the cameras stationed on tripods to capture the ceremony and one camera at the reception’s photo booth in order to capture all that fun. The other two I am going to ask a few artsy friends to safeguard and capture some important moments throughout the night. All in all, we are excited for this Pinterest find and for another budget-beater!

Vendor News: Music is Booked!

About a month ago I took to Facebook’s recommendation posting and asked my friends for advice on affordable DJ’s in the area. As expected, I was granted far more options than I knew with what to do! However, the worship leader at G’s and my church had also commented on the post that his band, Steadfast, would be willing to consider playing at the reception if a live band was something we were interested in having. G and I talked it over not realizing that Steadfast actually meant the comment more as a joke than anything, and we then approached the band the next Sunday in church to inquire with them on more details.

After getting over a little bit of laughter that we were serious about a live band playing instead of a DJ (due to our wedding’s rustic and laid back feel being more in-tune to their tone as well), we agreed to meet later on in the week and go over a possible set list. Fine tuning a first-dance song as well as other traditional dances was a bit of a struggle, but with some guidance from Steadfast, we have officially drawn together an amazing set for not only our reception’s dance party but also our cocktail hour!

I’ve witnessed Steadfast play around town here and there over at local wineries and breweries, but I will post some of their music on the blog from time to time to share their awesomeness with you as well. It is official, friends, our wedding’s music is booked and we are privileged to have our church family join us in the form of a live band. G and I are SO excited!

Vendor News: Reception is Booked!

Exciting update for #SlackTieEvent — our reception venue is officially “booked”! For any bride-to-be in the midst of wedding planning, you know what a stress finding the venue can be. However, G and I truly lucked out.

We had had our hearts set on property owned by my parents’ neighbors. We have been to the property — 40 absolutely beautiful acres of woods, creeks, and pastures — to ride ATVs and chill at bonfires in the past and fell in love with the area. However, after talking with the neighbors, we decided against the property for a number of very reasonable reasons: no electricity, no running water, need for event liability insurance due to having alcohol, and limited parking. For a wedding of over 200 guests, all of these were things we had considered, but once walking the property with the intention of scouting possible reception locations these issues truly became visible.

Thus we were on the hunt again. We knew we wanted something in the outdoors for a rustic feel. Knowing the wedding industry in our area, I already had an idea of the cost of barn venues around us; they started at $4800 simply for the venue. This was not an option to us due to our budget. So we started thinking…

… and it didn’t take long to think of my godparents and their beautiful farm. Located off a small country road, this farm sports a large red barn with electric, a field for parking, and plenty of space for a tent to be set. We also spoke to our insurance agent and discovered one-day event insurance is quite affordable at about $120 — something which G and I both feel is necessary with having beer and wine available at our reception.

Upon speaking with my godparents, they were more than happy to host the wedding at their farm! G and I ventured out there today, and though we were unable to actually walk the property due to the monsoon happening in Southwest Michigan currently, we did talk to my godparents and go over all the fine details of what would be needed for the wedding day.

Badabing, badaboom — reception venue booked!