Thursday, August 28, 2014

Friendships.

Friendships are a funny thing. 

When we're growing up, the more friends you have the cooler you were. Or at least, that's what you were made to believe. In the same token, those friendships were pretty easy to jump to and from as time moved along.

Deciding whether you still wanted to be friends with someone was pretty easy. Do we still enjoy doing the same things? What's their favorite tv show? Will they still play barbies with me even though it's not really the cool thing to do anymore? What about paper dolls? Those were always my favorite....

I am very lucky to say that the majority of my best friends have been my best friends since high school, some even longer than that. But there were times where I had to decide if I still wanted to be friends with some people (not any that I am currently friends with today). Marcy (not her real name) likes to hang out with the crowd that likes to get in trouble. Is that the direction I want to go? Jill (not her real name) never wants to come to school and her parents don't make her. What kind of influence is that?

Luckily, my parents raised me to know right from wrong. They also helped me to understand who were the right people to include in my "inner circle". There are some friends that I probably thought I'd be friends with for the rest of my life, that I haven't really spoken to since early high school days or even longer. And that's ok. We're all leading lives the way we wished we would (or at least I hope that for them) and I'm confident I wouldn't be where I am today, with the friends I have today, if I hadn't went in a different friend direction.

But that's how it worked in our teenage years. What about today? How do you know when a friendship is no longer real? How do you finally, for lack of a better phrase, cut them off? 

As we grow up, friendships tend to be less about material things and more about emotional attachments. Just because Cindy doesn't want to go to dinner with me tonight doesn't mean we shouldn't be friends any longer. But what if instead, Cindy decides to tell everyone the reason she didn't go to dinner with me is because she thinks I'm _____ (insert mean girl comment here).

I know what you're thinking - obviously that person isn't your friend. Yes, you're right. But how do you get a clean break from these kinds of people when they continue to show up at different times in your life?

Some people will always be in your life and you have no control over that. So where do you draw the line? When is it acceptable to no longer feel obligated to invite them to major events in your life or send them a Happy Birthday text? And is it wrong to not do either?

I have been thinking about this a lot lately, likely because I have a lot of important events going on in my life and wedding planning basically shows everyone's true colors. But I still have a hard time not feeling obligation to certain people. Although that's mainly because I know I'll have to see him/her from time to time and it'll basically be awkward otherwise. But I think that answers my question - if you're only including people in your life because you feel obligated or want to avoid awkward situations, then it's likely that said friendship has run it's course and it's time to move on.

And there is nothing wrong with that. You can't be friends with all people all the time. People change. People grow apart. People have different priorities. It's what makes the world go round, right?

What do you think? Have you ever had to eliminate a friend from your adult life? How did it work out?

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

One Month.

Yep. It's officially one month until the big day.

Insert obligatory, HOW DID THAT HAPPEN!?

Thankfully I can say, I'm not stressed. At least, not yet.

I mean I did start planning in full force 13 months ago for good reason. Reason being - I didn't want to be stressed. Check.

I'm not a very stressed person, but still - ask me again in 3 weeks and see what I say....

There's still things left to do and I'm convinced there will be things left to do until the day we get to the venue for the wedding weekend. And yes, I say the day we get there because I can promise you, I will NOT, I repeat, I will NOT be lifting so much as a finger (accept to drink my mimosa) once we arrive at Mount Ida Farm on September 26th.

And I say mimosa because I won't be allowed to serve myself beer/wine during the rehearsal dinner because we are having to pay someone to hand you beer/wine. #stupidstupidstupid

Anyways....

We are also paying people to stress for us. We are paying people to do the heavy lifting. We are paying people to make our dreams a reality. Therefore, I plan for the wedding weekend to be the most stress free weekend of my life.

Until then, I still need to cross things off the list to make sure that can all happen. Although I've said it to a many a bride before me and I'll say it to myself - if it doesn't get done, it wasn't meant to be done.

Now onto the to-do list.
  • Finish painting the cornhole boards
  • Get JC's Grandma the fabric/corn to make the cornhole bags
  • Touch up the table numbers, spray paint the cake board and then glue the two together
  • Spray paint the Mr. & Mrs. banner and assemble
  • Finish the escort tags for the mason jars and then assemble
  • Make place cards for the bridal party table
  • Get chalkboard signs/sayings to JC's cousin so she can work her artistic magic
  • Have second and then final dress fitting
  • Buy liquor for groomsmen gifts
  • Stain groomsmen gift boxes
  • Find chalkboard signs to note room assignments in the house for the weekend (it's like camp over here, y'all)
  • Get the marriage license
  • Hotel welcome bags: buy snacks/goodies, print thank you note for all guests and local attractions list for people staying all weekend
  • Get back on the healthy eating/working out train
  • Buy a garter
  • Buy flower girl gifts
  • Find a dress for rehearsal
  • Buy picture frames & print pictures for cocktail hour
  • Send off final DJ list
  • Put together a playlist for rehearsal dinner
  • Maintain my tan
  • Buy a new bathing suit for the honeymoon
  • Pack for the honeymoon
  • GET MARRIED to my best friend and have the BEST.DAY.EVER.

I'm hoping I can cross a good portion of these things off this list by the next time we chat, since Labor Day weekend is this weekend and I basically have zero plans. Not being able to go to the lake over Labor Day weekend should be some sort of torture mechanism.

Anything I'm missing?!

Wedding Wednesday

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

#samanthaslastdoedown

You guys.  Today might be the first day since Thursday that I've felt even slightly close to how I imagine a normal human being feels (because at this point I forgot what normal feels like). I can safely say I felt slightly more off with each passing day in Nashville. But I can also safely say that I had to most amazing weekend of my entire life.

Let's rewind.


Step 1: Make sure to allow yourself 3 nights in Nashville. Your body won't thank you, but your memory will because you'll make the most fantastic memories over the next 3 days.

Step 2: Stay at the Hilton in Downtown Nashville. Obviously I'm partial, but more importantly, it's prime location and every room is a suite. 

Step 3: Go out on Thursday night even though you're exhausted and ready for bed. First stop - The Stage. You'll run into lots of interesting people - some overly intoxicated, some just weird. But they'll all provide some great stories for the remainder of the weekend. 




Step 4: When you get back to the hotel on Thursday night, load up The Wobble on YouTube and start performing it in the giant empty lobby.


Step 5: Start Friday morning off relaxing. Having girl talk. Preparing for the remainder of the weekend that's sure to be a complete whirlwind.

Step 6: Spend your entire day at Pinewood Social. You will NOT be disappointed. There is so much to do at this adorable place and the service is impeccable. We didn't have a reservation for the pool because we didn't learn about the pool aspect until we were on the plane Thursday night. But everyone there went above and beyond to ensure we got a place by the pool, along with making sure we were well fed and our drinks were never too empty.












And although we never ventured to the other spaces of this place, they also have bowling alleys with a 50s vibe, karaoke, outdoor dining and bocce ball. I'm not sure there was anything that you would have wanted to do there, that you couldn't have. Except not have fun. If you aren't into fun, then maybe you shouldn't venture to Pinewood.

Step 7: Have a fun little gift opening session with all of your bachelorette party attendees. And give them gifts too! Of course the MOH/host is likely going to have a goodie bag for everyone, but if you travel as far as we did, your girls have spent quite a bit of money just to get there, so it's nice to pay them back a little.






Step 8: Have dinner at Sambuca in Midtown and ask for Emerson as your waiter. He's incredibly gay, so he was basically the funniest waiter ever. Get the Cosmo Pizza and the small plates - specifically the shrimp & crab dip and the buca beignets. Drink a Pink Lemonade - it's one of their lower calorie drinks and it's DELCIOUS.


Also, when offered free dessert because you're the bride, induldge in the Cheesecake Sopapillas. But when you get chocolate on your hand and blame Emerson, don't use the Resolve he provides to clean your dress. Tell him that's for carpet and to get you some soda water.


Step 9: Spend the rest of your night in Midtown at Winners/Losers. Sure, there are plenty of other bars, but Winners and Losers are side by side and too perfect to pass up.





At Winners, be sure to befriend a bachelor party - specifically one guy from the bachelor party (or rather, he'll befriend your mom). His name will be Andy, he'll buy everyone's drinks for the rest of the night and he'll be everyone's favorite person for the rest of the weekend. He'll also be invited to your wedding by your mom and she will kick someone out of her table, just so he can sit at her table at the wedding. She will be convinced he is now part of the family and he will meet his soul mate at your wedding. She will wake up the next morning and still stand by everything she said the night before.



At Losers, you'll get to dance and listen to an awesome cover band playing some of the best country songs out there. The night will get fuzzy from there, so you won't remember much beyond dripping in sweat and singing at the top of your lungs.


Step 10: Find a cab driver that will break the law and load up all 8 of you into a van cab and take you Downtown.


And then end your night at Tequila Cowboy so you can shake your booty with the best of them.

Step 11: Order 2 pizzas before bed to ensure you're not dying on Saturday morning. And make sure to take a blurry picture of it to send to your roommates who decided to go to bed instead of eat pizza. 


Step 12: Head to brunch at Tavern Midtown, but be sure to get there close to opening time if you have a large group. They don't take reservations, but have tons of different places to sit and accommodate a large party. They will have 2 for 1 drinks and amazing food - like Cheddar Cheese Biscuits and Chorizo Gravy.




Step 13: Walk up a little past Vanderbilt University and do a little shopping in the boutiques in Midtown and then venture back to Downtown with 2 friends to get yourself some Buy 1, Get 2 Free boots. I'm not sure there's a better deal for anything out there. 

Step 14: Have a bachelorette shower with some hilarious gifts, fun games and yummy drinks. 





Step 15: Make sure you have a reservation for dinner at The Southern. Get the Kendall's Cup to drink and order the Chicken Fried Chicken with White Cheddar Mac & Cheese for dinner. Share it with someone else because obviously you need room for more drinks.




And most definitely don't forget to venture in the restroom and see the most ridiculous sink you've ever seen because it looks like a counter that water would just fall off the side of, but magically it doesn't.





Step 16: Go to Honky Tonk Central to start the night out. The live bands at this place never disappoint. Although I will say don't venture to floors 2 and 3. The second floor will just be ok and the third floor will sound like you're in a library.




But while on the first/best floor, make sure to stick around for quite awhile because a 9 year old, by the name of Marisa, will get on stage and blow everyone out of the water. If you close your eyes, you will be convinced Martina McBride is on stage. The entire bar will get silent, pull out their phones and video tape the whole performance.


Step 17: Venture down to Coyote Ugly because every bachelorette needs to dance on the bar.



And make sure you mark your spot.


Step 18: Go back to Honky Tonky Central because it's just amazing. You'll run into the bachelor party from Winners the night before, but Andy will be nowhere to be found. Thankfully, your mom will have already gone back to her room and she won't be left disappointed that she missed out. #RememberAndy

Step 19: Order pizza again. This time get the White Pizza. Don't order the Fried Mushrooms though because they will just forget them.

Step 20: Have a dance party with your MOH.

Step 21: Go to bed at 3, only to wake up at 5:30 feeling like you may be near death and knowing with 100% certainty that your body is telling you "if you don't leave Nashville soon, you will die". 


Step 22: Genuinely be happy you're going home. Someone will suggest rewinding the clock and doing it over again and as the bride, you will suggest that they hush it because that's the LAST thing you want to do.

Step 23: Understand that you won't feel like a normal human being for at least another week, as your body tries to comprehend why you put it through such nonsense considering you're NOT 21 anymore. 

And there you have it. That's how to have the absolute best bachelorette weekend in Nashville, Tennessee. I cannot even begin to thank the 7 ladies that helped to make sure I had the most amazing weekend of my life. Not only did they take time out of all their busy schedules and put dents in their checking accounts, but they also pushed past exhaustion and hangovers to keep on trucking until the moment we stepped on that plane home. I am extremely lucky to know each and everyone one of these gals. 

And now there's only ONE wedding event left - WEDDING WEEKEND in t-minus 38 days. 

Wedding Wednesday