A Scottish Wedding

Scottish Wedding

There are pros and cons of having family live abroad. While you have a beautiful destination to visit, you often miss out on family gatherings. In the three years since our last trip to Scotland we’ve missed countless holidays and a beautiful wedding. Therefore, when another wedding landed on a week we were free we knew we had to be in attendance.

Scottish Wedding

Our stay in Scotland was brief, but we were able to pack a lot in! We began our stay in Edinburgh and embarked on a road trip to the wedding festivities in Crieff. Along the way we made stops at the Kelpies, Falkirk Wheel, and the battle grounds of Bannockburn.

Scottish Wedding

Scottish Wedding

Scottish Wedding

While the Scottish countryside is breathtaking, my favorite part about our stay was being surrounded by so many of Ian’s relatives. Weddings have a special way of brining all of your loved ones together and I was thankful to meet everyone. The wedding also offered opportunities to get in touch with Scottish traditions as we learned ceilidh dances, listened to bagpipers, and ate haggis balls.

Scottish Wedding

Scottish Wedding

Scottish Wedding

Before we knew it we were packing up our bags. My Dad always said it’s best to leave when you are having fun, but a part of me wished we could have extended our stay a few more days. Alas, a new adventure was calling us and we had to make our way to the airport to fly to our next destination – Copenhagen!

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Month in Review: August, 2016

Month in Review: August, 2016

Oh, August. You were good to me. With two family birthdays and our wedding anniversary we had a month packed with celebrations, but surprisingly there wasn’t any cake. That just goes to show you where cake lyes on our list of preferred desserts! Instead we satisfied our sweet craving by roasting s’mores and I was able to check another item off my summer bucket list.

Month in Review: August, 2016

I had the pleasure of working on a few new and exciting design projects this month! I love collaborating with other creatives and can’t wait to share the finished designs in the upcoming weeks. (Stay tuned!) While it’s easy to get lost in a project, I made it a point to leave my desk and take an afternoon walk every day. With scenery like this, these walks quickly became a highlight of my day.

Month in Review: August, 2016

Month in Review: August, 2016

At the beginning of the month, Ian and I packed our bags and drove to Milwaukee for a friend’s wedding. The weekend was filled with twinkle lights, signature cocktails, and lots of laughter. Oh, and did I mention dancing?! The guests invited to this wedding knew how to bust a move which lead to multiple dance-offs throughout the night.

Month in Review: August, 2016

After brunch the next morning, Ian and I took advantage of being in Milwaukee and wandered around the Third Ward. We ended up on the rivers edge watching boats pass by and soaking in the sun. Milwaukee is a beautiful city, and it was nice to take a moment to reflect over the love-filled weekend before we got back in the car to embark on our journey home.

Month in Review: August, 2016

After a few days to recuperate from our wedding weekend adventures, Ian and I donned our green and gold for a preseason Packer game! I’m not a huge sports fan, but I can get behind anything that serves hot chocolate. So while it drizzled during the second half of the game, I was snuggled inside my rain coat sipping my drink. Overall, I would say the outing was a success!

Month in Review: August, 2016

Toward the end of the month Ian and I made the trip to Madison to celebrate the August birthdays in my family! We had an eventful weekend packed with golfing, going out for dinner, and an impromptu Olympic games competition. Lots of laughs were shared and it was hard to pack up and head home on Sunday.

Month in Review: August, 2016

Ian and I ended the month by spending a rainy afternoon at the local art fair. Nestled under our umbrellas, we strolled between vendors daydreaming about how we will decorate our future home. We picked up a few business cards before settling down and listening to the performers on the main stage. Once our shoes squished with every step, we decided it was time to call it a day and head home to dry off.

I hope you all had a wonderful August and enjoyed this glimpse inside our month.

Wedding Advice from a Guy’s Perspective

img_7957(Watercolor by Sophie & Lili)

Hello everyone! Ian (the husband) here for the first of what might be several cameo appearances on Beauty & Blooms. That probably depends on how this attempt goes – so please comment and share!

This Sunday marks my one-year wedding anniversary with Sarah so she asked me to give a man’s perspective on wedding planning. I don’t have the space to cover everything so I will tackle a few take-away points from my experience.

Contracts and Payments

This first point is somewhat boring, but definitely practical. Planning our wedding was my first experience with vendor contracts, particularly from independent contractors. Looking back I wish I had negotiated more. The standard vendor contract for a florist or bakery hands you is not set in stone. No one will be offended if you ask for a change to the terms; if they are that should be an immediate red flag.

If you negotiate anything, I would suggest discussing the payment terms. A deposit upon booking is pretty standard and will likely not go away. However, oftentimes vendors will ask to be paid in full a few days before the event. Avoid this if you can! Withholding a portion of the contract until after the event can help keep vendors honest. Have the portion be small enough so the vendor is not too worried but large enough that it is somewhat relevant (10-20% should be sufficient).

For example, we waited four months to receive our wedding photos. Yes we checked in regularly but no amount of email shaming has the same impact as the almighty dollar. I promise you our photos would have arrived much more promptly if some payment was withheld until delivery.

Get Involved

This point is directly addressed to you guys out there. The bride will almost always be more engaged. She will likely have the biggest opinion and the last word. It’s not a bad thing. She has been dreaming about this day long before she knew who was waiting for her at the end of the aisle. Meanwhile, you were watching ESPN and playing XBOX. That said, don’t just sit out the planning phase. Take on some of the effort. Voice your interest in a portion of the days events. At the very least, know what is going on. You shouldn’t feel like a guest at your own wedding.

Act Married Even Before You Are

Planning a wedding is honestly one of the most stressful things I have done in my life and I wasn’t even shouldering most of the weight. There will be tears. There will be hysterical laughter. You will argue. You will talk about eloping. Don’t give up!

Consider these trials as the warm-up before the main event – marriage. Recognize when your partner is struggling. Support and comfort the other. Let your partner help when you are down. Feed off each other. That is what marriage is all about – at least for me. You are not in it alone anymore. I don’t think I would have survived the planning if I was.

I hope this was helpful for any of you newly engaged couples out there! If you have any advice of your own please share it in the comments!