... Being down on one knee... changes EVERYTHING!
How Kim & Brian became... 'Kim & Brian'
We met - Literally - right out of the sky!
Kim was the leader of the 'Wappingers Falls Friends Meet Up' group where she had events that gathered new friends together (to get OUT of the darn house). This wasn't a dating site... just about having fun and enjoying LIFE a little bit more in her new home surroundings (Side note: Kim moved from Brooklyn to Wappingers Falls, in May, 2006).
Brian decided to be brave... and come out for his very FIRST Meet Up group for one of Kim's events. He claimed it had nothing to do with the pictures posted online of Kim... but she thinks she knows better.
The Meet Up event -- Skydiving at the Ranch in Gardiner, NY.
We met briefly before we signed up, chatted lightly while we talked with our instructors and Kim made fun of him (and the other 2 folks jumping that day from our group) in their silly looking jumpsuits with hopes to scare off some pre-13,500 feet jitters. As this was Kim's 3rd skydive, she didn't need the jumpsuit (and the jitters were at a minimum).
The jump was a success with all 4 of us landing safely (having the time of our lives... but 'o course!). After the adrenaline rush wore off, we went into New Paltz for some lazy shopping and a bite to eat. All through lunch, Kim felt Brian gazing her way, and she tried to ignore it, but couldn't help but notice his amazing blue eyes. Brian's friend Melissa explained it to him early on... it's like you've been hit by a "lightning bolt".
After the outing that day, Kim and Brian stayed in touch via email and phone and became friends. There were online chats, and befriending on My Space. Brian was persistent... he didn't give up on Kim (even with her lukewarm attitude). Brian was able to show Kim what a VERY sweet, kind & thoughtful man he really was (especially through their life challenges early on in the relationship). Kim began to see the light that existed within him and fell for him. Brian found that Kim allowed him to see and appreciate the little things in life. Kim found herself on the opposite end of the spectrum when Brian was wrapped up in getting ahead in his current career. Kim showed him that life with her had things to offer that a career never could. She had to now convince him! Kim never held back who she was with him... allowing him to see her true colors right away too. (Hmm... guess that whole bit on "Friends First" really does make a difference, eh?). Brian and Kim found that their relationship was like the Celtic trinity knot.
No beginning... no end... and no discerning where one separated from the other.
They shared their very first kiss at the 'Counting Crowes' concert at Dutchess Stadium - August 25, 2007, and became inseparable soon after. By January 2008, Brian gave up his apartment in Middletown, and moved in with Kim (in her condo). Her condo became THEIR HOME... as they found that HOME was with one another. Things then continued to move quickly in their relationship - planning for a life-long future together -- with no regrets.
The rest is quite simply... History!
The proposal was quite amazing... I couldn't have asked for anything more romantic & spectacular. Brian truly impressed me and swept me off my feet. ~ Kim
We went to Niagara Falls, Canada to have a little weekend away to celebrate our 2nd year Anniversary (2 years felt like year 10 after all the life challenges we've been through early on).
Brian secretly scouted out a place by the falls during our first afternoon there, and then planned for the evening to set the stage. We had a VERY long day running from one attraction to the next in the 90 degree heat (NO JOKE!) and were both pretty exhausted... but the idea of anniversary presents kept us both going strong and warded off any desire for a snooze. Okay, that's a lie. Kim REALLY wanted a snooze... but pushed onward for Brian's sake. He was in a very upbeat mood (and she had no idea what was on his mind!) and didn't want to let him down.
We brought our anniversary gifts for one another to the park, and Brian decided that we sit on the grass by the falls. Before Brian let Kim open up her gift, he took about 5 different pictures of her, with wrapped present in hand, with the falls directly behind her. She started to get annoyed... "Just let me open up my damn present already!" We shared a chuckle... him still in scheme mode (mmuuaaaaaaahhahahaha!).
Kim's anniversary present was a digital photo frame (I've been wanting one!). In addition, Brian secretly carried around a 15 pound generator, (as the photo frame didn't operate on batteries) so that she could "plug in" the frame to watch the slide show he created, while sitting in the park, facing the falls.
Brian made up a montage of pictures of their relationship over the last 2 years... with music in the background ("It Had to be You" by Harry Connick, and then their song, "I Can't Help Falling in Love With You", by Elvis), with text on each picture, telling a story of how they met, the love they share together, how Kim lifts him up to new heights (with the words matching the picture, of course), and a bunch of their finer, sillier moments.
The next to last picture was the cover photo for the movie "When Harry Met Sally" (one of Kim's favorite movies of all time), with the quote
"...When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible".
This next photo was the last picture on the slideshow, with the text telling Kim to TURN around (behind her) and also said, "What did you think I went back to the jewelry store for - those earrings?"
(Background story: He bought Kim sterling silver knot earrings while in Cozumel, Mexico during their cruise together in early June. It was there that he bought The Ring as well. He used the earrings as a decoy -- giving Kim the earrings on the cruise ship, while hiding the ring. He kept it hidden in the condo since June! SNEAKY! As he told her later on, he was going to propose on Halloween, Kim's favorite time of year. But as the quote said above... he didn't want to wait any longer!).
When Kim turned around, Brian was on one knee with ring in hand and said "Kim (voice cracked as he teared up a bit), Will you be my Permanent Directive?"
(Background story: "Directive", from the movie "Wall-E" after Eve realizes that Wall-E was more important than the plant. See the flick if you haven't... it's VERY cute!).
Kim was already crying from watching the story of their life together (thus far) as she knew it took many hours of his time and effort to find the pictures and match it up with the story... and then the music, let alone hauling around the 15 pound generator! Then to see the last 2 photos... She lost it completely! Kim was sobbing before she even said 'YES'. They hugged and kissed like you wouldn't believe and then he said "You still haven't answered the question!?". haha! Of course she screamed "YES!".
They let the digital frame play the music on the highest volume & slowly danced in the park by the falls... for all to see... under a big tree and sky filled with stars. Shedding tears and holding one another (ok... so Kim shed the tears, not Bri. What a typical "dude" sometimes! haha!).
And why... you wonder... was he so adamant on taking the picture of the falls in the background before she opened the gift? Because directly behind her, was the American Falls and right beside that (to the right) was another smaller waterfall that's called the
"Bridal Veil Falls".
(Come on... you know you wanna say it... AWWWWWWW).
After the tears stopped flowing, we went to the strip for some silly fun at Dave & Busters... met the coolest bartender who bought champagne and gave us a D&B card to go play some games!
Simply an AMAZING night.
Nuptials... Cocktails... Reception! OH MY!
We're getting married on Sunday, October 10th, 2010 at West Park Winery, Highland, NY.
What started out as a small Bridal Party of 4 (I have 2 sisters... he has 2 brothers... DONE!) ended up into a mini circus of 10, with 6-8 additional attendents to the ceremony.
Here are some spoilers of the place and it's grounds... it's quite beautiful!
The front Sign... and the actual road to the winery, leading the way.
And Deer Hill, where the ceremony will be held (if Mother Nature cooperates), that is just up the hill from the winery/tent. It is beautiful - overlooking the hudson in the distance.
Grounds... and the amazing tent that is there all season long. It's poleless... and the ceiling is covered in drapped sheer organza, with 2 rustic chandeliers. Quite pretty! It's also mindful of the heat (with AC installed) and cold (with heaters installed). I will be using the chairs pictured below (not the one in this photo).
The bar area... leading to the tent. Very rustic.
What we're going for: Romantic Rustic, with a touch of WHIMSICAL (But not quite as much whimsy of a 'Alice in Wonderland' theme!).
We wanted something soft, easy and with a touch of whimsy. I'm making the flower pomanders with silk flowers (mostly gerber daisies, see below), and organza ribbon. The look we're going for is most like the first photo.
Originally, I was working with a friend to make a "rustic arbor" to have the ceremony underneath/in front of... but after further consideration - I haver MORE THAN ENOUGH ON MY PLATE. So I'm just going to use a pre-made one, and have it decorated in similar soft fashion. (FYI: The 2nd photo is an actual photo of Deer Hill, where we're to be married).
Sand Ceremony - We've ordered an hour glass (with engraving on one side of the wood base) that we'll use for our sand ceremony, uniting 2 different sands together - forever in time. Our plan is to use the hourglass whenever we have an argument... flip it over to let the other speak... or flip it over... just to have a breather. And then.. when kids come... it'll be a good visual for their "time out". But it'll be a work in progress.
Bouquets & Bouts
Gerbera daisies are my FAVORITE FLOWER... so I wanted to incorporate them into the day somewhere. These are just a few variations of autumn colors (and flowers).
I also really like circus roses (the colors are amazing... like a sunset in a flower) and fiddlehead ferns. They are so MUCH fun... very Seuss-ian. ;)
I've been growing my hair out since early last year (before we even got engaged). I'm looking for a half up/half down style... with big bouncy curls. wearing a headpiece in front of the bun-styled poof, and then the veil in the back/underneath. (see the first picture).
Centerpieces & Tables
This is where the TRUE whimsy will come in to shine. I've bought medium sized orange Funkins (foam pumpkins) and will "carve" them out in designs and light them up with twinkle lights.
I'm still playing with the details... but as of now, they will sit on clear pedestal cake stands, with some colorful leaves and gourds, with a few colored glass tealight candles on the table.
Miscellaneous items for the Ceremony & Reception...
For escort cards... the red/greenish apples will be used.
Guest Book: Instead of a traditional Guest Book, my sister (who makes AMAZING quilts) will cut out fabric squares (colors yet to be determined) and will have fabric pens for folks to write a note. After the wedding, she'll compile all, with some pictures of FI and I, and put it all together into a cozy beautiful quilt.
Cake & Candy Bar
The YUMMY cake will be: Dark chocolate cake, with layers of cannoli cream with choco chip filling and one layer of hazelnut mousse with buttercream frosting! YUMMMMMM!
Style wise... I liked the below pics, but we're going with this topsy turvy style (more or less... probably cream, gold, green color frosting):
Cake Topper: Our Cake topper will be like this.... just 'Mini-Me' versions of US! Can't wait to see how they turn out!
Candy Bar is very much still a WORK IN PROGRESS. We wanted a mix of old fashioned candies (like rock candy and buttons on the paper!), chocolates, etc. Here are some style ideas...
Here are a bunch of my DIY projects completed... and some still a Work In Progress.
And it all began with the Save The Dates
Designed on Powerpoint. Background pic is the photo I took last autumn of the road/path leading to the winery. Hence... the philosophical and LITERAL meaning of "Our path begins here...".
Pics compliments of our Photog Chris Kelley.
Wedding website completed for free on the knot.
Printed out on magnetic 'Paper', calendars bought for $1 each, raffia ribbon to tie it all together (and used often in favors and design for the wedding). Leaf... because it's AUTUMN afterall! And the leaves/calendars were sitting with pumpkin potpourri, so the smell lingered.... yum....!
I tried to Bling out my shoes... but I went freehand... and should have stuck to block letters! I didn't LOVE the outcome... but it's "home made"!
(not a DIY... but will be changing into these cute comfy flats - same satin red as the heels, and later the red converse!)
Photoshare cards (WIP).
Designed on powerpoint, incorporating the invitation enclosure card design.
Lotto Scratch Off (1 of 3 favors)
Bought the glassine envelopes, made the labels on zazzle. Added a penny! Good to go!
Tears of Joy Packets
Left over envelopes from the lotto cards... made a few packets. Designed on powerpoint... printed on white labels.
Pomander balls (Gerbera daisies) to line the aisle and later for reception decor using 2 different colors (10 in total).
Bought the foam from various stores, ribbon (after a few purchases and try's!) from gift's international... and flowers from various stores (hence the 2 different colors, that are cohesive, but NOT the same). I really liked the first set, but couldn't find the flowers anymore as ALL of the stores were taking out the summer stuff (in late JUNE!) to put out Fall/Christmas items. So not fair!
Bar & Drink swizzle sticks!
They say: Love is Sweet; K&B; Mangia!; Kim & Brian; October 3, 2010, Eat, drink & Be Married!; 10-3-10.
Practicing with the dremel on a huge Funkin. (a lot harder than it looks!)
Actual sized funkin (bought at JoAnne's last season for 60% off!) and stands (black candleholders... Odd Job for $2 bucks each! Hooray for sales!). These are a WIP (pic with cell phone so you see the actual size).
They will be (hopefully) be carved into designs, with some real red and yellow (preserved... bought from save-on-crafts.com) leaves and possibly some crystal bling draped from the pedestal for a little bit extra sum'n sum'n.
I stamped the pretty tree I found at ACMoore that was nearly identical to the tree we're using inside the invite for the enclosure cards. Used extra cardstock from Cards and Pockets, for the enclosure cards.
After I stamped, My Brian sprinkled clear emboss powder and then used the "pink dildo" embossing tool (it really does look like that when you glance at it quick! haha!) to heat and finish off!
Then I tested out another pretty stamp on the pocket inside the pocketfold invite. It's leaves and swirls and came out FAB! LOVE the look. Will match nicely with the black on the enclosure cards.
Starting to put them together: Bri cut different sized cardstock (for embossed tree, and then for the backing - brown and gold), punched the corners with punch/emboss tool, and then I glued together with the raffia ribbon and shimmied them off the pocket fold to assemble later.
Table number holders (WIP):
Went hunting in the forest behind my condo... found some great branches to use. Lot's of wire and twine later, these are the outcome. NOT a final product -- need to find a way to get them to stand up on their own (my fingers and hands REALLY hurt after this day!).
I may end up with trunk/branch cuttings sitting flat on table holding the number (see below for possibilities).
OR may buy something like this:
From: Monkey's on the roof and/or This Fine Day (etsy shops)
Flip Flop Basket (just needs a sign on the front with ribbon - WIP):
Jordan Almond Flowers (2 of 3 favors).
Tag (embossed and stamped) reads:
Five sugared almonds for each guest to eat...
Reminds us that life if both bitter and sweet.
Five wishes for the new husband and wife...
Happiness, Love, Health, Wealth and Long Life.
And then... my sweet helping out some more.... it's HIS DAY TOO afterall!
He's a FAB and very precise cutter...
Did I mention... PRECISE??? lol (He looks slightly insane there... ! HA HA!)
Here's pics of SOME of the items I've bought.
Took them to catalogue WHAT I had (as I've been shopping since last September... 2 weeks after we got engaged!), but also to show/send to my DOC, Vicki, so she'll be aware of what I have and possibly think of ideas how to use it! haha!