Posts in the 'Christen' Category

On Marriage: The Lie and The Truth About Marriage

 

Often times, when we’re in the throes of wedding planning, we forget what’s on the other side of the tulle, peonies, Champagne and sparklez. We forget that there have been fights, anxiety, uncertainty … and there will be more of those. Because marriage takes sweat, fortitude, compassion and sometimes fear. As this post from Momastery points out, sometimes we lose the butterflies, and it takes work to get them back.
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The Way We’re Told It Goes:

  1. Meet The One
  2. Fall In BUTTERFLY Love, Have all the Feelings
  3. Date, Accept Proposal
  4. Have a Wedding: AKA YOU’VE CROSSED THE FINISH LINE!
  5. You’re done! Congrats, Cinderella! All that’s left now is: Happily Ever After!!!!!

The Way It Has Worked For Me:

  1. Meet A Special One
  2. Fall in Butterfly Love, have all the feelings
  3. Date
  4. Have a Wedding – AKA Cross the STARTING LINE.
  5. You’ve begun. Shit gets real.  Grocery shopping and children and assembling furniture and navigating each other’s families and demons and other confusing, terrifying things keep happening. Slowly understand that marriage is not what you thought it would be and your husband is not who you thought he’d be and additionally you are not who you thought you’d be.
  6. Notice there are no more butterflies. Panic like bloody hell. Understand with mounting dread that LIFE has killed the butterflies and this must mean you have “fallen out of love.”
  7. Look into separation.
  8. Start to learn how horribly difficult it will be to get unmarried for you and everyone you love and also – HOLY CRAP IT COSTS A LOT. Try to locate a path of less resistance. Search for some solution that is less emotionally and physically and mentally and financially expensive. It’s often not LOVE that makes us stay- but the expense of leaving. AND THAT’S OKAY.
  9. Ask for help. Meet with experts, talk to wise people, read good books. Mostly, Be still and listen for The Next Right Thing in the quiet.
  10. Wait. Keep waiting. Make no decisions except what to do EXACTLY RIGHT NOW. Sit with the pain. Sit with the struggle. Sit with the uncertainty. Resist the relentless urge to deflect the pain, run from the pain, numb the pain with food- booze -work –future tripping- unkindness- false certainty -busyness or any other Wisdom Killer.  Just Be Still and Wait.

- Continue reading here.

Five for Friday: Gorgeous Invitations from Marchesa + Wedding Paper Divas

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Happy Friday, Broke-Asses! I recently got a hot tip that beautiful, illustrious fashion house Marchesa launched a collaboration with our ever-adored partners Wedding Paper Divas to make some seriously stunning invitations. Here are my five favorite offerings from this killer partnership:

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Sumptuous Swirls, $184 for 100.

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Night Blooms, $184 for 100.

breathtaking_blossoms-signature_white_wedding_invitations-marchesa-plumberry-purple

 

Breathtaking Blossoms, $184 for 100.

lithe_lace-signature_white_wedding_invitations-marchesa-black Lithe Lace, $184 for 100.

beaded_flair-signature_white_wedding_invitations-marchesa-cashmere_pink-pink Beaded Flair, $184 for 100.

Aren’t these invitations swoonworthy? Which is your favorite?

 

 

There’s No Sinking Feeling with Solemates

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You guys, I’m admittedly the worst high-heel wearer on the planet. I live for my flip-flops (no, seriously. If there isn’t snow in my direct walking path, flip-flops are on my feet. And I’m from Wyoming, so that ‘s some serious dedication). I’m 5’2″, so you’d think the opportunity to be just a little bit taller every once in a while would get me going, but really, the only time I’m faced with the prospect of rockin’ a killer pair of stilettos is for a wedding or some other schmancy event. And those are usually in the spring or summer and outside. Since I’m laughingly far from a dainty ballerina who can flit about on her toes, heels + grass = inevitable sinking, which takes me back to my starting height, but adds a splash of comedic relief as I try to unstuck myself.

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For years, I’d been seeing the Solemates High Heeler around the Internets — but I think my initial introduction was in a wedding magazine, when I was planning my first wedding. And my curiosity has been piqued ever since. Last November, in Florida for my fella’s cousin’s wedding, I was finally in a situation where I could try them out for myself … and nudge right into the good graces of his family by getting a pair for the bride’s mother — who was wearing a pair of killer heels that would have javelined themselves right into the soggy lawn. That’s what I like to call a double-win, if I do say so myself.

I got them, immediately put the Solemates on my go-to black strappy heels and dashed — er, rather, hobbled like a baby giraffe learning to walk, because I’m that graceful — outside to see if they really, truly, actually worked. And they did. Duh.

This is me. For realz. Can’t you tell by the unicorn outfit?

So, what are they and what do they do? Solemates High Heelers are little plastic things that stand about an inch tall, slip onto the bottom of your heel and expand the base size of your heel, keeping you from sinking like a stone or falling through the cracks in the boardwalk. They come in clear, black, silver or gold, and since grass is typically taller than an inch, you can’t see them in your wedding photos. Not that people are closely examining what’s going on with your stiletto anyway, though I guarantee that there will be chicks who note that you and your needle-thin spikes seem to be floating above the grass and will ask you what your secret is. They come in different sizes — narrow, classic and wide — to accommodate different heel fatnesses (making up terminology here, folks) and you can pop them on and off different heels to reuse for each wedding and each different pair of shoes. Bonus for you city slickers: Wear them with your heels on cobblestone to protect your precious kicks and save yourself some skrilla by making your trips to the shoe doctor less frequent.

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If you’re planning on wearing your fanciest shoes for your wedding, or as a bridesmaid, you should probz get some of these. And if you’re the bride, go ahead and get the Wedding Rescue Kit, one for yourself and one for each of your girls. Trust me, you’ll thank me in the long run. With a huge swath of goodies inside (earplugs, tampons and antacid, just to name a few) any wedding disaster can quickly be averted and the partying can continue.

 

On Marriage: I’m Not Waiting Until Marriage

This article popped up on The Huffington Post, and as I tend to do with all things wedding- or marriage-related on a site I frequent, I opened it and read it. And my heart fluttered a bit. There does often seem to be this abounding sense of pessimism surrounding weddings and marriages, especially in this era of the divorce rate setting up camp at around 50%. So sometimes, it’s really, really nice to read a piece about someone who is truly happy and truly wants to be married for the sake of love and partnership. Neal Samudre explains his stance on why he didn’t wait:

BALANCING ACT Via Kyle Steed Design on Flickr

I’m getting ready to marry my best friend, and because I love her, I must say: I didn’t wait for marriage. And hopefully, she’ll be happy I didn’t.

Let me tell you the story of why I bring this up now, just a couple months before my wedding:

I proposed to my fiancé in December, when I didn’t have a job, didn’t have money, and didn’t have anything to my name but nickels and dimes. Some said it was romantic, but most people said it was foolish.

When the reality of marriage started sinking in, I wrote an article describing my sentiments on why I chose to get engaged at an early age. I honestly said that I got engaged at a young age because I was in love, and love for me is greater than timing, how much money I have, and other jaded opinions on marriage in our culture.

What I didn’t expect, however, were the millions of people who would tune into this belief. The article went viral in a short time, with millions of views around the globe and thousands of shares.

Hundreds of people were reaching out to me and blessing my marriage. But also, on the other side of that, people were condemning it.

People said I wasn’t ready.

They said I was too young.

They said I was idiotic for getting engaged without a job, and that I should start preparing for a divorce soon.

One person even found pictures of me, scribbled racist jargon all over it, and emailed it to me saying that I should go kill myself because I’m a minority with dumb thoughts on love.

This disturbed me of course, but one response bothered me even more. Multiple people said this when they commented on my future:

Just wait until marriage.

They said this as if I’m going to cross the line into marriage and instantly be dissatisfied.

Why is our culture so cynical on love these days?

People willingly choose to believe increasing divorce rates as a fact for their own lives. They let negative comments and views on love seep into their opinions on marriage, ultimately leading towards cynicism.

Marriage is a contract, they say. Marriage is the end to fun times. Marriage is not all it’s cracked up to be.

People listen to that and carry it with them to the altar.

It’s no wonder more and more marriages are failing today. People are oddly choosing to believe a pessimistic view on marriage.

Some have even told me that love has nothing to do with marriage.

To read more on why Samudre couldn’t hold off any longer, why he wouldn’t wait, head on over to HuffPo.

Shop The Broke-Ass Bride’s Favorites at Unique Vintage!

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Hey BABs! You know we’re always trying to find the coolest, sweetest partners to work with to bring you rockin’ frocks at a price that won’t kill your budget. And with our ever-lovin’ love for cool, retro styling, Unique Vintage is one of those partners that holds a special spot in our hearts.

And now, you can shop our very favorite looks from Unique Vintage‘s site, because they apparently love us as much as we love them. We went through and picked pieces that truly made us swoon, with price tags that didn’t knock us unconscious. With a range of items from shoes to cardigans to wedding gowns, we tried our best to find something for everyone. Head on over and check it out!

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Which of these BAB faves do you love?

Ten for the Weekend: Cufflinks, Crafty Goodness and more discounts!

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The weekend is upon us, so before you bust out your shopping shoes and grease up that debit card, take a gander at the 10 rockin’ deals I found for this week’s Ten for the Weekend! Whether you’re aching for some killer Cole Haan pumps or scheming ways to share your wedding photos, there’s surely something her to strike your fancy!

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1. Make sure your groom and his dudes are well-accessorized with rockin’ cufflinks.Buy 3 and Get 20% Off with code buy3get20 until 4/30 at CuffLinks.com! And if he has a killer collection already, make sure he can wrangle them in one place with a nifty armoire. Get a free Deluxe Armoire ($200 value) on orders $399+ with code gwp200 until 4/30.

2. For all you pro photographers out there, get a leap on organization this season. Score 15% Off SmugMug Professional Subscriptions for Wedding Photographers.

3. Hey, crafty ladies! If you don’t know Darby Smart by now, you should. And here’s your stellar introduction: Get 25% off all Easter crafts! (My fave are the etched jars or the bunny candle holders.)

darby smart easter crafts

4. Still looking for the perfect headpiece? I’mma help you out with that. Accessory Avenue has some stunning headpieces and now you can score one with a nice 15% knocked off with code BROKE15.

5. Apparently, this week celebrated National Siblings day. Being an only child, this is nowhere near my radar, but Cole Haan seemingly knew, and kicked off its Friends & Family Event by offering 30% Off your purchase! Ends April 15th.

6. If the hunt for wedding favors or gifts for your bridal party has you wincing at the impact on your wallet, then jump on this: American Bridal is shaving a cool 20% off purchases over $175, plus free shipping on orders over $149.

7. What would make your girls feel fancier than wearing a hot, stylin’ dress on your wedding day? Not much, and BCBG is knocking an additional 30% Off Final Cut Dresses Online Only! Valid 4/9-4/20.

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8. Have you gotten your engagement photos back, and now are wondering what the deuce to do with them? How about getting a sweet book to display them? Even better, get that book at 50% off from Mixbook until 4/14 with code APRLMX.

9. Y’all, Groupon has wedding deals. YES. You read that right. GROUPON HAS WEDDING DEALS. Check ‘em out here.

10. One of my favorite things in life is the feel of crisp, new sheets when I climb into bed at the end of a long day. BeddingStyle.com must be reading my broke-ass mind, because they’re rocking a killer 20% off discount right now with code bed20. Valid through 4/16.

Five for Friday: Fun, Flirty Pops of Floral

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Happy Friday, Broke-Asses! From what the ubiquitous Facebook has been telling me, spring has definitely sprung, and with that comes the beginning of beautiful blooms. Now, I’m not a huge flower person, but I can certainly appreciate a nice little dose of floral from time to time. So in the vein of minimalism and the spirit of the season, here are my five favorite floral items, all under $60 for this week’s Five for Friday:

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Reese Green Floral Print Pointed Pump, $43 Screen Shot 2014-04-10 at 3.38.49 PM Happy Hour Ditsy Hip Flask, $22

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Padraic bow tie, $45

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Miss Daisy Studs, $26

Screen Shot 2014-04-10 at 3.49.13 PM Paris Pencil Skirt, $60

Are you feeling poppy (heh, get it?) enough to don some daisies? How do you like to wear your floral?

 

 

Winning Wednesday: Let ModCloth Doll You Up for Your Rehearsal Dinner

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There are few things that Team Broke-Ass loves more than ModCloth. From the prices to the styles to the superfun apartment swag, it’s almost like they’ve crawled inside our brains and set up shop. And that love only increased when ModCloth decided to start pimping some ridiculously gorgeous wedding wares. Swoon x 1000! It’s a problem.
So, obviously, when the chance came to share this mad obsession with you, our darling Broke-Ass Brides, we jumped at it. And since the ModCloth-BAB love seems to be so mutual, they’re not just trying to put you in a dress and call it a day. NOPE. ModCloth is tossing a $150 gift card your way to outfit you fully for your rehearsal dinner. I mean, haven’t you spent money on enough things already, without having to take a whole ‘nother outfit into consideration? With a v. large portion of their dresses falling well under $100, you’ll have enough left over to get some sweet new kicks and beautiful baubles, which should help you kick your bridal style into full gear!

Each method earns you an entry, so get to clicking so you can score this rockin’ $150 gift card!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

So, what outfit would you rock for your rehearsal dinner, BABs?

Stadium Proposals: What it Takes to Pop the Question in a Ballpark

YOU GUYS. It’s baseball season. And I freaking LOVE baseball (go Red Sox!!). When I was younger, I always thought it would be super rad to be proposed to atop the Green Monster at Fenway … though age and my opinion of public proposals have changed that a bit. However, ballpark proposals are still a dream come true for many baseball-lovin’ brides-to-be. But, they certainly don’t come cheap. The Huffington Post ran this nifty graphic the other day which was put together by the folks at Swimmingly, breaking down the cost for each stadium. Turns out the Pittsburgh Pirates won’t loot you of all your skrilla but there’s no dodging the huge price tag at the Los Angeles Dodgers’ field. Here’s the full breakdown:

2014 ballpark proposals

Even though it certainly takes a pretty penny at some of these parks, apparently all proceeds from proposals go to charity. Swimmingly breaks down what’s included in each package here.

What’s it take to pop the question at your favorite team’s stomping grounds? How do you feel about a proposal at a major league ballpark?