Sunday, February 17, 2013

Five Months to "I Do!" and So Busy I Missed A Month, Too

You are cordially invited...
I've been so busy with work and wedding planning that I completely forgot to post a Six Months to "I Do!" blog last month.  I've accomplished tons in the last two months, but it's left me with very little down time.  Any night where I'm not working on grading papers or planning some part of the wedding, I grab my fiance for some quality time or a date night.  Blogging just hasn't been very high on my to-do list.  I'm sorry, dear readers.

Here are some highlights from the last two months that are worth mentioning:
  • I ordered the wedding invitations.  (see above)
  • We got the groom and groomsmen apparel decided and ordered for the big day.
  • I ordered wedding favors for the guests.
  • We took a roadtrip to watch an outdoor hockey game. (More on that in a later blog.)
  • A co-worker I don't enjoy tried to invite herself to my wedding.
  • We toured local restaurant with my in-laws to find a rehearsal dinner site.
  • A small family feud may have developed between me and my sister-in-law.

I've heard that planning a wedding can be a fairly stressful time in your life, but this is just freaking ridiculous.  I'm so done with other people's drama and crap (Yes, I said crap!) that I just can't stand it anymore.  It seems to be coming in from all sides now and I am completely done playing nice.

The last time I wrote to you, my dear supportive readers, I mentioned that I was having some issues with a wild card bridesmaid and some sibling rivalry.  Thankfully, my wonderful maid of honor took care of the wild card for me.  Muzzled her would be a more accurate description, but as it was done on my behalf I throw no flags on the play.  With that handled, you'd think life would be getting easier right?  Less dramatic, maybe?  Not so much.

The co-worker inviting herself to the wedding was almost funny.  My teammate, that IS invited to the wedding, mentioned in passing one day that he might have a conflicting event that would prevent him from coming to the wedding.  Unfortunately, an uninvited co-worker was in the room at the time and began asking questions about the wedding.  When was it going to be?  Where was it going to be?  When was I sending out invitations?  Clearly, she thought her invitation was coming soon.  I told the friend that was invited that it would be okay if he couldn't attend because the guest list was out of control high and that would be two less wedding favors I'd have to make.  That's when the eavesdropper, who had hovered in the room to hear more details, piped in that she would take his place.  I insisted that the guest list simply wouldn't hold anymore people and that I was praying that forty plus people who were invited would also be unable to attend.  The interloper then informed me that she'd just come for the wedding and skip the reception because "anybody can come to the wedding ceremony.  Nobody will be counting heads there."  So, now I may have to have a ticket taker and bouncers at my ceremony to keep this unwanted guest out of my big day.  Maybe, if we don't mention the wedding anytime in the next five months, she'll forget all the details?!

The issue with Squirt's parents flared up again.  As of my last wedding post, we had come to a detente where by I would either A) suck up my pride and ask my sister in law for permission to have Squirt in my wedding the next time I saw them or B) let the subject drop, never to be spoken of again.  I was going to take option B, as asking the waffler for permission to include Squirt was more than I thought I could stomach.  My mother had other ideas, though.

Eventually, we were all in the same place at the same time.  I swallowed my pride and asked for permission to use Squirt in my wedding (under pressure from my mother, of course).  My sister-in-law behaved like the insane lunatic that she truly is and left the room without answering my question.  She hid in the bathroom and started texting my brother who was sitting  (very embarrassed by her childish behavior) in the living room.  I waited ten minutes.  She never came out and I received no answer to my question that day.  This is the bat shit craziness that my mother and I are forced to endure when dealing with my brother's wife.  A day later, in the middle of the Super Bowl no less, I received a long, rambling text about all the things I had done to "piss her off" in the last five months and then a firm "no" to my nephew being in the wedding.  Needless to say, I'm very tempted to revoke her invitation to the wedding and counsel my brother to divorce this bitch. 
So, the drama just keeps on coming with no end in sight.  My once happy family is in a total state of upheaval with my mom budgeting her time out between them and us so that we don't have to be in a room together anytime soon.  The part that I really hate, though, is that my sister-in-law has made it a public acrimony by discussing the issue with her friend circle.  Friendamily events attended by that friend circle have become awkward affairs with sides clearly being taken.  Needless to say, my friends support me and antagonize her, while her friends are giving me the silent treatment in support of her. Ugh!  All I wanted was to get married to the man I love.  Why did it have to turn into this drama-filled nightmare?

Lucky for me the in-laws have been delightful during this same stressful time with my family.  My future father-in-law decided to take an active role in choosing the location for our rehearsal dinner this month.  When my fiance and I brought the topic up, we mentioned a few local restaurants that have small to midsized party rooms and reasonable menu prices.  Papa Bear was having none of that.  He informed us that he was not going to be paying for any low rent affair and promptly started naming some very nice, but more pricey restaurant options.  I told him wherever he picked would be fine.  The rehearsal dinner is one of the few things I am not responsible for planning and I was perfectly happy to leave it up to the in-laws. 
Papa Bear insisted that we would need to go dine at a few of these nice restaurants to determine which would suit our needs best.  So, we started a restaurant tour.  Every Tuesday for a month, Papa Bear treated us to a nice dinner out with my fiance's parents.  Half of the restaurants he picked didn't even have event rooms, but coincidentally we ate at Mama Bear's favorite restaurant the day before her birthday and we tried out the new seafood restaurant that I'd been trying to convince my honey to check out.  In the end, Papa Bear picked the first restaurant we visited.  But, through the restaurant tour, we got to spend a lot of drama-free quality time with my honey's family, which was wonderful.

I'm really starting to enjoy my in-laws and they seem to genuinely like spending time with me.  Maybe there is a silver lining to the drama cloud after all, if avoiding my own family brought me closer to my future in-laws.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

What a difference a year makes...

Exactly one year ago today, I posted a blog (only the second one I'd ever written) about Valentine's Day from the single perspective.  Twelve short months later, I am on the verge of my first non-single Valentine's Day.  I'm sure I'll blog about the experience later this week, but for today I felt like looking back on where I was last Valentine's Day.  What a difference a year makes!  Since I had exactly two followers when I originally posted this, it should be new for most of you.  Enjoy!

Happy Single Awareness Day!
(or you can call it by it's initials...SAD)

They finally decided to make a card for this underground holiday?!

It's that time of year again, the florists' Black Friday. Time for hearts and flowers, chocolates and candy hearts, cards and stuffed animals. I like Valentine's Day, in theory. A day where you pay extra attention to the one you love by showering them in gifts and flowers? Sweet! (Not tooth ache sweet, but more Dude, Where's My Car? sweet) If that was the way it ever turned out for me, I would be all about this holiday.

I am a single girl. Girl? Woman? The debate rages on in my head. Now that I am thirty-two, woman seems more appropriate, but the chick in my head isn't quite ready to let go of being a girl yet. Wow, I just put my age in print on the internet. Aren't I Little Miss Maturity? I'm just barely over thirty, just a scosh past it, nowhere near approaching forty... those therapy sessions are still years and years away. Deep breathes, Lainey. Head between the knees. You're okay, you're okay. But, I digress. I am a single put whichever noun you feel would be most appropriate here and as a singleton, Valentine's Day is not really a beloved holiday for me.

A few years ago, when the ratio of my single friends to married friends tipped more heavily to the single side, I would get together with my single friends on Valentine's Day. We'd meet up at a restaurant and celebrate Single Awareness Day. For those of you who've never heard of it, Single Awareness Day is the companion holiday to Valentine's Day. It's kinda like Festivus, as it is a holiday for the rest of us who don't have the pre-requisite loved one necessary to celebrate Valentine's Day. Sports bars work best for Single Awareness Day celebrations as they tend to have less couples related activities on Cupid Day. We'd have some laughs, talk about our adventures in singledom, and go home feeling like it was okay that we were still single on this most coupled holiday.

Now, the scales have shifted and the single friend pool has dwindled. Everybody (or at least it feels that way sometimes) has gotten married and I'm still single. Normally, this doesn't bother me that much. By and large, I like being single. There are some benefits to being single in the world today. I don't have to tell anybody where I'm going or when I'll be home. I can spend my money as I please without having to explain my purchases to anyone. I have total control of every remote control in my house. How many married people can say that?

Even with my "single and loving it" attitude, I can admit that there are times (not often, but occasionally) when I wish for something other than my single status. When I get sick or break a bone (a new experience for this year), I really wish there was someone else in my house to take care of me. When I light the Christmas tree lights and lay on the couch in my darkened living room, I wish I had someone to snuggle with while I enjoy the glow. When I play with my adorable nephew, I sometimes wish I had one of my own to play with and tickle (something I won't do while I still have my single status). And, of course, on Valentine's Day when co-workers are receiving floral deliveries and friends are talking about their plans for the evening, I wish that I had someone to send me flowers or make evening plans. Whoa, this got heavy all of a sudden! Quick, back to the lighter side before somebody reading this gets SAD.

So, if like me, you don't have a Single Awareness Day celebration to attend this year, then you have a choice to make.

Option #1: Sit at home watching sappy movies on Lifetime with a box of Kleenex.

Option 1: Pulling a Bridget Jones.

Option #2: Go to dinner at mom's house where you'll undoubtedly be presented with a Valentine's Day card and a box of chocolates.

Option 2: Momma's home cooking and some TLC

Option #3: Get out of the house and make your own Single Awareness Day celebration.

Yeah, I'm leaning towards option 3, too.

As my BFF pointed out in the comment section of the original post, I ended up choosing option 2.  Everybody wants a card and candy on Valentine's Day, even if it's only from Mom.  On a happier note, I now have most of the things I longed for in this post.  I had someone to snuggle with on the couch while looking at the Christmas lights in December .  I've got someone in the house to take care of me when I get sick and I'm pretty sure that I'll be getting a special delivery from the florist at work sometime tomorrow.  At least, I hope there will be or else my honey's going to have some explaining to do when I get home. 

Happy Valentine's Day to all my coupled readers!  Make sure you show the love to that someone special in your life tomorrow.  Happy Single Awareness Day to all my single readers!  May it be a day of enjoying all the benefits of singledom.  Enjoy hogging the remote control for me while you're at it.  I never get to control mine anymore.  I'm lucky if I even know it's location nowadays.

But, losing control of the remote seems like a fair trade for all the other wonderful things I get from being with my honey.  I love you, Jay!  Happy Valentine's Day!