I’m so excited (and, if I’m being completely honest, totally nervous) to share our engagement photos with you! Our wedding is coming up so quickly, and I know I’ve barely shared anything about it, so this post seemed like a good way to start talking about it. We weren’t sure that we would have a chance to take engagement pics, but when our photographer told us she would be in Napa to shoot a wedding, it seemed like the perfect opportunity. So, a few weeks ago, my honey and I were lucky enough to spend the day at a beautiful home in St. Helena, surrounded by olive trees and vineyards, eating lunch and drinking wine and giving each other lots of smooches.

I’ll admit, there was a lot of awkward nervous laughing at the beginning, which probably had something to do with all the hugging and kissing and hand-holding in front of a camera. Awkward, and also totally surreal. Like stepping through the looking glass to some alternate reality on the other side of the wedding blog, where I wear dresses and we eat cake and Elizabeth Messina takes our picture.

Our wonderful wedding planners (the inimitable Laurie Arons and Jenna Lam) put together the most perfect wine country farmers market lunch for us under the olive trees.

Sam at Perfect Endings made this darling miniature wedding cake, complete with marzipan olives and olive leaves. Chocolate cake with chocolate hazelnut truffle cream? Can you blame me for eating it for breakfast the next day?

We walked around and took photos in the vineyards that grew the grapes that made the wine that we had with lunch – such a treat! Oh, but let me give you a tip: do not try and walk barefoot in a vineyard. It might sound romantic and lovely, but then mutant thorns stab you in your feet. I swear those things had teeth. Not particularly romantic when your honey is helping you balance as he pulls the little monsters out.

This is just before I cracked up laughing because my honey kept smooshing his nose against my face.

This last one is my very favorite. To me, it looks the most like “us.” It was one of the last photos of the day and we’re in our everyday clothes, so we were way more relaxed than when we started. I also think it shows exactly how I feel, which is, “See this guy? I get to marry him!”

Photography: Elizabeth Messina

Venue: private home in St. Helena, California

Vineyards: X Winery

Lunch and details: Laurie Arons Special Events

Yellow dress / green dress / gold shoes: Kate Spade

Hair / makeup: Wallett Luburich

Cake: Perfect Endings

“I hear eloping is in” card: 9SpotMonk

It was tough deciding which photos to post (much tougher than choosing photos of someone else), so thank you to my honey for helping me narrow down our favorites (and for letting me post your handsome mug on the internet). You can check out some of Elizabeth’s favorites on her blog, Kiss the Groom, and more on Laurie’s blog where I believe she’s posting the menu of the amazing lunch she and Jenna made for us (I hope she tells you about the sandwiches, because I could eat one of those every day for the rest of my life). I’m so looking forward to having these wonderful ladies there with me on my wedding day!

A few of you have asked about my engagement ring, so I thought I’d share a bit about it. It’s a cocktail ring from the 1920′s, that came from Tail of the Yak in Berkeley. The center stone is an almandine garnet, which my honey jokes looks like a root beer barrel (you know those old fashioned hard candies?). I love it!

Kiss the Groom and Laurie Arons Special Events are sponsors of Snippet & Ink.

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I’ve been thinking about Monday’s post, which I think conveyed my feeling about the parts of wedding planning that are crazymaking and emotionally exhausting. But honestly, a lot of it has been wonderful and even fun. So in addition to some fun weekend links, I thought I’d share some of the things that are helping me to stay sane and/or smiling, in no particular order:

- Ignoring anyone who tells me being a bride is all about the little details.
- Making decisions for ourselves and our families and not for some perceived audience.
- Jim and Pam’s wedding (this clip is missing the part where Jim cuts his tie, but I love that).
- Miss Manners’ Guide to a Surprisingly Dignified Wedding.
- Letting our wedding venue and season be a style guide.
- A Practical Wedding.
- Remembering what weddings are not.
- La-la-la-love songs.

If I was cool I’d wear a scarf like this.

Girl crush at Design Crush.

Classified calendar.

The Jazz Singer – gorgeous.

Heirloom vegetables are delicious and beautiful.

Will someone stop by Jennifer Behr‘s new studio for me? via Brooklyn Bride

Exercises in gratitude, via Blah Blah Blahg.

Circus circus.

Gotta love a really cool map.

I think not.

My honey needs to start painting so we can do this.

Inspired by a midnight garden stroll.

Vintage stamps made easy, via Letter Writers Alliance.

Polaroid still lifes.

How cool is this wedding dress?

Fork and knife.

A raffle for Liam!

Two different color charts, one and two.

How trustworthy is your beard? via auburn & ivory

Have a wonderful weekend, lovelies! And if you feel like it, share what’s keeping you sane and smiling with the rest of us.

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Happy Monday morning! I apologize that I don’t have an inspiration board to share with you today – I haven’t been feeling super inspired by pretty pictures for the past couple of weeks, so I keep starting inspiration boards and then getting bored with them. Inspiration boreds. (Sorry, sorry!)

{Not that it has anything to do with this post, but who doesn’t love kisses and puppies?}

Part of it might be that my honey and I are in the midst of our own wedding planning (Yes! We’ve set a date and picked a place and everything! Well, not everything, but you know – we’re on our way.), so that’s sort of dominating the wedding part of my brain, which is interesting when I sit down to create a blog post, because it’s not all pretty details and inspired ideas. It’s the budget and guest list and vendor decisions and what I guess you could call the bones of a wedding. It’s trying to hear 8 million opinions graciously and without heading straight to Crazytown (I get about a C-minus in that area; hoping to bring it up to at least a B). And I’m just not so sure about putting all of that on Snippet & Ink.

Thinking about my own wedding can make blogging a little tricky, and being a wedding blogger has shaped my planning process. In lots of ways it’s been amazing (I’ve made some really wonderful friends who have been such incredible resources and so supportive) and in other ways it’s been overwhelming (I have so many ideas, yet nothing seems original because every clever wedding idea anyone ever had has been posted on a blog somewhere and then re-blogged a hundred times over). There’s also this thing where everyone seems to think that because I blog about weddings, I should know exactly what I want my wedding to be. (People. I’ve been engaged since last May. Between then and August we changed the date twice, at three different venues, in two different states. And then we put things on hold. Does that sound like a person who knows exactly what she wants for her wedding?)

So, that’s kind of where my brain is (at least, one of a few places). I’ll be back with inspiration boards just as soon as possible, but in the meantime, I hope you’ll share some of your thoughts here in the comments – what’s inspiring you, or how’s your planning going, or anything else you feel like chatting about.

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Mid-Week Pause

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Since I spent Christmas with my honey’s family this year, I’m headed home today to spend a week with my mom and my sister. Why not start the new year with a day off and a trip, right?


(This photo has nothing to do with me or my trip home, but it was so darling and it made me smile. By the ever talented Jonathan Canlas.)

Regular posts will be back tomorrow, but for today, I thought I’d ask all of you to pick up my slack by sharing some inspiration… How are you maintaining your sanity and perspective during your wedding planning process? And would you be so kind as to share it with the rest of us in the comments below?

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As another year comes to a close, I would be remiss if I didn’t take time to thank all of the amazing people who make Snippet & Ink what it is. So here’s a little toast…

…to the readers, for the beautiful stories and weddings that you share in your comments and emails. Hearing kind words, and that you’ve found inspiration on Snippet & Ink, is exactly why I keep blogging everyday.

…to the photographers, flower designers, event planners, and all of the other talented vendors who contribute to posts on Snippet & Ink, for sharing your beautiful work with me and allowing me to share it with my readers.

And last, but certainly not least, to the sponsors. Because of your continuing support, I am able to put all of my time and energy into Snippet & Ink, and hopefully into making it a better blog with every post.

Here’s looking forward to another year full of inspiration, for weddings and for everyday.

19 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Personal