December 21, 2010

Shoesday Tuesday :)

Remember my post about my search for the perfect shoes ? Well my local Nordstrom didn't have the Stuart Weitzman I Do lace pumps so they ordered it from another store for me so that I could to try it on.

Well, they came in last week, and over the weekend, I popped in to try them on. They were perfect :) To be honest, after I put them on, I loved them more that the Louboutin Fetilo's.  I felt very bridal, sexy, and romantic all at once when I tried them on... 

The left shoe has "I DO" and the right one has a "heart shape" in the perfect shade of blue Swarovski crystals. I love them just the way they are, and no longer thinking of getting them resoled in blue. They are also super comfortable - the heels are 4" with a 0.5" platform.

I love love love the shoes. Wedding shoe decision check !

December 15, 2010

Wedding Wednesday: Bridal Party

So KOK and I have to decide on the members of our bridal party. KOK has a lot of friends and family that he is really close to, so his list consists of 18 groomsmen ! Yes you read that properly, and he also has 12 more friends designated as ushers !

I attempted to veto the list, but as I looked through the entire list of 18 men, I honestly couldn't find one person that I could suggest he remove. They are all people that are important to him.

So I am faced with a dilemma - do we really need even sides? If I include my besties, my cousins, some of my soon-to-be nieces, I can easily have 18 ladies but I don't think the sides need to be even. I'm planning on 9 ladies so that each lady can walk in with two of the groomsmen. Frankly, I think having 36 people in the bridal party, not including the flower girls and ring bearer, is quite excessive..  

What to do?

Photo credit: The Knot

December 10, 2010

Wedding Day Scent

Rose Essentielle by BVLGARI
While I was in London earlier this year for my future-mother-in-law's seventieth birthday, she gave me the eau de parfum and lotion set for Bulgari's Rose Essentielle. 

Sadly while I was in Rome with K for my birthday, the parfum bottle broke and most of it split. 
Between moving to a new apartment at the beginning of September and my still not having unpacked, I thought I had lost the lotion. This morning however, while pottering around, I found it tucked away in a shopping bag :) . 

I had read in a bridal magazine a while back about picking a wedding day scent - don't ask me which magazine though, I have a bridal magazine addiction. I'll post about this someday. But I digress - this morning I Googled "wedding day scent" to see what others thought. I came across some interesting articles: 

Marie Claire thinks the perfect scent to wear when you say, "I do" should be soft and unabashedly romantic, the Wedding Channel thinks it depends on the type of wedding you're having, and Aisle Dash says it should be a memorable scent that conveys your joyous romantic mood and enhances the wedding environment.

I decided this morning, after finding my Rose Essentielle lotion, that my wedding scent will be Bulgari's Rose Essentielle. I will be purchasing the body wash, lotion and eau de parfum to use on our wedding day; this way I can layer on the scent per the advice from Martha Stewart on making the fragrance last all day. 

Description of the parfum:
Rose Essentielle 
The ultimate in pure luxury, Rose Essentielle is a tribute to the world's most prestigious flower - the rose. The ultimate floral expression of luxury and absolute femininity, it is a rose-floral interpretation of the Pour Femme fragrance.

Notes: Rose Prelude, Blackberry, Feuille de Violette, Living Mimosa, Jasminum Sambac, Patchouli, Bois de Gaiac .

Luxurious. Feminine. Delicate.

The words used to describe the style of the of the parfum embodies exactly how I want to feel on our wedding day :) In addition, I will likely have a bouquet that consists of roses, orchids and maybe French tulips 

Did you have/ Will you have a wedding day scent? What was/is it, and how did you choose?  OR do you have a signature scent? OR do you associate certain scents with certain memories?

December 08, 2010

Before you plan your wedding, plan your marriage...

A wedding ceremony, albeit all the attention we place on it, lasts only a day or at best a few days depending on the culture. A marriage on the other hand is a commitment to your husband or wife that should last a lifetime by the Grace of God.

I came across the book titled - Before you plan your wedding, plan you marriage... earlier this year and it was an awesome read !

I started reading the book on the kindle app for blackberry, and also ordered a copy from Amazon. But it was so good that by the time the book arrived a few days later, I had finished reading it on my phone. So I gave my copy to a friend of mine, D.  However, I still wanted a hard copy of the book, so I ordered another one but D's boyfriend had seen the book,  read the first few pages and has since obtained my copy of the book ! It's a must read - the authors, a married couple, and they do a fantastic job of discussing the important concepts to grasp for a marriage to work - communication, fighting fair, sharing expectations, commitment and prayer to name a few.

In planning for our marriage, K and I completed pre-marital classes at our church in London during the month I was there between September and October. In continuing to build a foundation for our lives together, we've also picked out an engaged couples devotional that we will work through in the months ahead ...

How did you plan for your marriage ? What do you wish you had done?

December 07, 2010

Meet the Parents Part 2

So quick recap: K and I started dating March, my parents came to visit and met him in April . May rolls around,  K is graduating from business school and it's my turn to meet the family ! 

A few weeks to the graduation, K's mom calls him and in the course of conversation with him, she realizes she taught my mom in secondary school at Methodist Girls High School in Lagos Nigeria. For a fleeting moment, I instantly thought wait until mom hears this; a wave of nostalgia swept over me; I wished my mom could be right there.  

The conversation shifted to what we would wear for the graduation ceremony and K hands over the phone to me so that the women could talk. K's mom says, "we have chosen to wear pink lace, do you have any or should I have something made for you." I responded in the affirmative and it was set - We would be wearing pink lace for K's graduation. FYI we meant: me, his mom,  his sister, his sis-in-law and his sis-in-law's sister. 

The date of the graduation finally arrived and I was a ball of nerves. K asked me to make some J-rice and chicken so that they would have some food to eat when they arrived the day before the graduation. Gosh ! I felt like it was a cooking exam, I felt the food had to be perfect. 

The day before, I woke up early and headed to my hair braiding appointment. When that was done, I proceeded to my apartment, got the food ready - drove over to K's place set up the stuff and it was off to the airport. 

We made our way to baggage claim to meet them after we arrived at the airport. As we got closer to the baggage claim and I made eye contact with K's mom - it was my turn to drop to my knees and "kunle" (kneel down) to greet her. So right there in the middle of the airport, I just knelt down for what seemed like forever (although it was probably just a few seconds) before she got to me and said I should get up. 

They loved the food and I got compliments. I was thrilled!

The next day was graduation day, so I met them all at K's apartment so we could head over to the graduation. I arrived in my pink lace and my own matching gele. After we arrived at the ceremony, K's mom realized I had tied my own gele, which did not match the rest of the entourage, and she hastily handed me her "ipele" and said "how will they know we are all one family, if we are not matching ?"  I obliged and K's sis tied my newly acquired head-tie and we all matched. It was truly beautiful... This would not be complete without a picture: 

At the end my meeting the family went well and the journey continued.... 

December 06, 2010

Shoe Shopping

I'm a shoe addict! I love shoes a lot!  Before I found the dress, I fell in love with this Christian Louboutin Shoes - I even blogged about them on my other blog . Sadly, I have called every store that carries Louboutin in the US even went as far as sending an email to the Paris Louboutin Store, and enlisting my friends in London to search as well. The shoes are completely sold out :(  I can't even find it on eBay!
So I have begun the search for a new pair of shoes, however, nothing has tingled my fancy as much as these.  My dress is alencon lace and tulle, again these Louboutin's would have been perfect !  Oh well  - here are the other options :

1. First up- Mr Christian Louboutin released in his current collection, a pair of shoes similar to Fetilo, the Tsar, but at a price point of $1390, it is definitely way above my willingness to spend - may be it will go on a (significant) sale soon enough. Although the ruffle in front may be a bit much
2. Fortitia Louboutin Sandals - released in the Spring/Summer 2010 collection along with my beloved Fetilo. Net-a-porter still has a few pairs but I think it's a bit too much for my dress
3. Parisienne Louboutin Pumps - love the tulle with the pretty blue insides and signature red soles. Although I love high heels, the comfortable ~3" heel on this would make it very comfortable to dance the night away 
4. Stuart Weitzman I do Pumps - love the "I Do" crystal details and the fact that this is alencon lace. If  I do go with these, I'm considering splurging on getting them resoled in tiffany blue  (one of our wedding colours) by these cobblers. I read about their work on Weddingbee.                                     

5. Pour la Victoire Carla Bridal lace pumps - love the tiffany blue sole, the "I Do" crystal details and the lace - priced at $93 from Zappos,  these are the most budget friendly 

So what do you think? Option 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 ? Or do you happen to know where I can find my dream Fetilo lace Louboutin shoes? 

December 02, 2010

Meet the Parents Part I

So barely a month after K and I started dating, my parents decided they were coming to visit in Pittsburgh. K decided he wanted to meet them and my parents obliged. 

My dad is a pastor, so the pastor of my church requested that he preach at the mid-week Wednesday service. So K and I decided that he would come over to my apartment after the service to officially meet the parents. 
So the Wednesday service rolled around and my dad preached, the message was great and everyone seemed to love it. After the service, I took K up to greet my parents. Now my parents are more on the non-traditional side and my dad had his hand out for a handshake but K was nowhere to be found. We looked around and K was flat on the ground prostrating to greet my parents as is the most formal greeting a man does in the Yoruba culture!

Later on that evening, K came over for dinner bearing gifts for my mom. She was thrilled ! He excused himself briefly and as soon as K stepped out, my dad starts cracking up and his says "E ni to ba fe tele tutu, a da mi si waju", which translates literally "one who wants to walk on cold ground will pour water ahead" but the actual meaning is that "one who had a goal in mind will prepare the way ahead of him". Apparently as far as my dad was concerned, with the prostrating and the gifts for my mom, K was preparing the way to ask my dad for my hand. 

Anyway, it was a really short visit and two days later, my parents were leaving and K offered to take them to the airport in his car. K was in business school at the time and had recently been interviewed and featured in the recruiting brochure. K decided to make himself look good and strategically placed a few copies on the back seat of his car. 
Of course my parents opened up the brochures, and my mom started oohing and aahing about K being in the brochure. My dad on the other hand was very business like and started quizzing K about his choice to go to b-school, his concentrations etc. It was like an interview and K of course had all his answers ready. 

It was a great visit and of course, K charmed his way into my parents hearts :) 

December 01, 2010

The official ring proposal and dress shopping

Sorry I've been gone so long.. a lot has gone on in the past month. 

K officially proposed :) 
We were already planning our wedding after RomeI was in London for a month between September and October. On the day he proposed, as he left for work, he asked if I would be attending my gym class that evening - I said no. Unknown to me he had plans to decorate the flat and propose - yup I messed up his plans. 
After work, he called that I should meet him at the mall near our flat so we could walk to a furniture store to check out some furniture for our bedroom. The store was closed, we walked back to the mall and explored BHS for decor stuff. It was getting late so we headed back home. 
After we got home, I asked what he would like for dinner and I went into the kitchen to start prepping. K calls from the living room and tells me not to bother making anything that he'll just have cereal... Anyone that knows my fiancĂ© knows his love for cereal at ALL times of the day. So I walk into the living room and found him on his knee. 
He said, I want this flat to be our first home together, I love you and want to continue to get to know you better as we grow old together - will you marry me?
and of course I said yes !  
I'm a sucker for dates and countdowns. We started dating on March 7, 2007 ( 03.07.07) and K proposed 3 years, 7 months and 7 days later on October 14, 2010. 
Here's a picture: 

I ordered my dress :) 
OK so this was hard for me. I actually started looking at dresses back in April after the discussion we had in Rome about getting married. While in New Jersey with my FSIL (future-sister-in-law) shopping for her boutique in Nigeria, we went into a bridal store that had a sample of a dress I had tried at the beginning of my dress search. The sample fit beautifully, and I knew this was the one. The sample was in pretty much perfect condition just a minor fix needed to get it perfect, and possibly a hem (depends on how high my shoes are). So I purchased the sample for ~62% of the retail price, and the store owner threw in the alterations for free :) Bonus: New Jersey doesn't have sales tax on clothing :) I'll be going back end of February / beginning of March for my first fitting. I bought the dress at this lovely store in Wyckoff, NJ - Something Special for Someone Special. My consultant was Irene, the owner of the store, she was awesome! 
It took 10 stores over 2 continents, 4 different cities and my trying on over 60 dresses to find the one!
I won't post the pictures yet, but it's by Lazaro and it's a perfect mix of traditional, romantic and girly. I can't wait to wear it in Malta 

October 06, 2010

The birthday dinner...

Venue: LeMont 

Finally the birthday dinner day arrived. It was scheduled for 2 days after my actual birth date... K arrived at my apartment to pick me up; he came upstairs while I finished getting dressed.  When we got to the car, he even opened the car door for me to get in(I could get used to this, but alas, not the case, he still opens the car door for me, but not often enough ). 

We drove for a while and finally got to the restaurant, it sits at the top of a hill in a part of Pittsburgh called Mount Washington. We walked into the restaurant and I was blown away - the decor was beautiful and the view was gorgeous. The restaurant had glass walls and we had a table right next to one of them; so we had the great view as pictured above. 

We ordered our dinner, got some wine and we started talking... 

He told me about how he'd been interested in me for a while about 5 - 6 months
He had told his siblings about me, even sent them my Facebook profile picture (OK that was kind of stalkerish but anyway... ) 
He said he'd been praying for a partner and felt God was leading him my way
He said he felt the feeling was mutual and would like to pursue a relationship with me... 

Me with my fronting self responded, "Who told you I like you that way?" and he said, "o I'm sorry, I didn't mean to assume." 

OK that's my limit to posing o!, 

I said, "it's OK, I do like you too, and I believe God is also leading me your way" 

At this time our waiter brought over our dessert and as we ate, I then asked, "so are we like dating now?", K responded, "Yup, you're my girlfriend"

I don't have the picture we took that night, it's on my refrigerator back at home in Pittsburgh

And so the journey began...

October 04, 2010

The birthday pictures...

So sorry I've been away so long.... Just really busy enjoying my time in London... I had a whole month, and now I have only 2 weeks left, I am going to try to make that 3 weeks or maybe a whole month !

So before the dinner, there were the birthday pictures... 

My actual birthday was on the 5th of March, and I decided to have some pictures taken. I asked K where in Pittsburgh, I could get that done and he said I should go to The Picture People

I asked him to drive me there, I don't really know why I asked him or do I?.. I guess I liked the idea of hanging out with him... So early on my birthday, he arrived to pick me up for my photo shoot... It was pretty uneventful until the photographer decided that K and I should take a photo together...

My reaction was ummm, err, awkward... and the photographer says, "you guys are dating right ?" and as I was responding that we were not, K interjected and says, "the relationship is only just starting.." I gave him a weird look, and ignored his comment... 

Anyway so the photographer says we should pose for a picture together and we awkwardly stand side by side. He shakes his head and says no, I mean something like this:  and that's how we took this picture... my head was on his chest and he had his arms around me...

The next day, we went to pick up the pictures and my sweetheart bought the above picture in the 10" x 16" size, with a frame and promptly hung it up in his apartment. I  managed to restrain myself for one more day until my birthday dinner to ask all the questions that I had...

September 21, 2010

Wedding Website feature !

I just noticed that my blog made it to the list of the Wedding Blogs Feature post on Nigerian Blog  Awards ! 

So excited ! :)

September 20, 2010

Before there was Rome...

There was Pittsburgh...

I had just moved to Pittsburgh (August 2006)... Well I had been there for about 3/4 weeks.
K was in his second (and final) year of his MBA and I had heard his name so many times in church but was yet to meet him. A few weeks later, a couple in the church was getting married and I finally got to meet him, honestly with all the talk that I heard previously, I expected to be completely blown away - rather my initial reaction was "that's all ?"

I saw him often in church but we never exchanged more than the cursory hi.

Unknown to me Mr K had his eyes on me, but hadn't found the right occasion to talk to me and I wasn't really looking to be in a relationship either... 

Fast forward several months to February 2007, I had been invited by a mutual friend to a Black History month event. I went with two of my girl friends, who soon abandoned me at our table to dance... 

Enter Mr K. 
He comes over to my table, we make small talk and I ask if he would like to dance (apparently, that is what he came over to ask me!)

We dance and later as I left, we exchanged numbers... 

He calls later that week but I was about to take a nap, so I told him to call later, which he did. We talked for 77 minutes (yes, I remember, I'm pretty good with numbers, dates and the like).

Unknown to me, the K's entire family had heard about this girl that he was going to marry...
Yes, and I was still oblivious... 

I had my first ah ha moment when he was talking to one of his brothers on the phone, who then asked to say hi to me - the conversation went like this:

brother: I've heard so much about you 
me (thinking): hmmm is he being polite or has K really been talking about me (#random insert: K talks about me a lot. I never realized this until he moved to London, and I would come visit and people would be like , "o you're The K, he talks about you ALL the time", not from one or two people but everyone...) 
me: (cheerfully) good things I hope
brother: hope K is taking good care of you
me (completely confused as to why K would be taking care of me)
me: o he's a good friend
bro: nice talking to you, i'm looking forward to meeting you...

I later ask K what that was all about, and he promises to explain everything later when he takes me out for my birthday in about two weeks... 

stay tuned for the one about the birthday dinner...

September 14, 2010

In the beginning...

Malta is the location we've chosen for our destination wedding for the summer of 2011. 

The journey to Malta un-officially began earlier this year in Rome when we took a trip there for my birthday. Here's how it began: 

Pretty much all my friends were convinced he would propose. I have to admit it, the thought did cross my mind but I refused to entertain it as I didn't want to get all excited and expectant only to be disappointed.

Anyway one of my friends E said to make sure that I should eat my birthday dinner dessert carefully in the event he had the restaurant put the ring in there - to which I responded that's too cliché.

Well to humor all my friends, I didn't say anything to him and I decided to wait through my birthday trip and dinner to let him know. 

So after I carefully ate my dessert I was like oh well I guess there's not a ring in here - I then told him of the various people who were convinced he would propose.
We both started laughing and he said, " I did think about it but couldn't find the perfect size ring :) "

So I guess my friends were half right. The rest of the conversation went like this:
K - but you do know we're getting married next July right ?
Me - oh really? nope I didn't
K - so feel free to start planning :)
Me - ok .....

Over the past several months, we had begun to actively work towards planning our future together, we purchased our first home together (details will follow later) and discussed our intentions with our parents. 

A few weeks ago, his mom called my dad to officially initiate the discussions and we can now officially begin to plan for Malta. My father has declared himself the CEO of all wedding planning activities!
However, I am yet to officially receive my ring ;) I'm going to London to visit for a while at the end of this week, so stay tuned...