Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Two Wheels Become One: Slow it Down

Don't let the order of my recaps fool you--we did not do all the fast dances at the beginning of the night and all the slow dances at the end. That would be weird. It might have worked out better for some our single guests who had deadlines to meet and goals to achieve, #ifyaknowwhatimean, but in reality, the slow songs were artfully interspersed throughout the playlist by our DJ.

We had requested a few slow songs ahead of time, but this next photo was during a guest request. Toward the end of the night, the DJ played "My Best Friend," by Tim McGraw. I had never actually heard this song before, but in that moment--dancing with my new husband, surrounded by everyone I love, realizing that the day was almost over--the song was the most romantic thing I'd ever heard.

I rested my head on his shoulder and meditated on the fact that he was my best friend, and I'd be waking up next to him every morning for the rest of my life (okay, I'll be honest, I misheard the lyrics and thought he was saying "Good morning, lover," not "You're more than a lover." But still, I do wake up next to him every morning). I loved this song so much that we used it in our wedding video (though it has since been removed from the online version for copyright).

So, whoever requested this song, thank you for the moment in the above photograph. I don't think I'll ever forget it.

There were a lot of other romantic slow-dance photos too. I love how weddings make all couples feel romantic all over again. Weddings are such a good reminder of why you love each other.

I was so proud to be a part of the married couples club finally!

Some of our guests had moves like I ain't never seen!

I don't remember exactly which songs got played, but according to our request list and the DJ's playlist, we slow-danced to:
  • Wonderful Tonight by Eric Clapton: Mr. Unicycle got me an Eric Clapton CD for my 19th birthday, which is the first birthday I celebrated with him.
  • Faithfully by Journey: My dad requested this
  • God Gave me You by Blake Shelton: The music video makes me cry every time because Miranda Lambert gives a little pre-wedding message to Blake. Sigh. I love love.
  • Something by The Beatles: No justification needed
  • At Last by Etta James: Wedding staple
  • Desperado by The Eagles: My dad requested this
  • I'd Love You All Over Again by Alan Jackson: It's just true. And that mustachioed man is Mr. Unicycle's favorite country singer.
  • My Best Friend by Tim McGraw: Guest request
  • Dream a Little Dream by Mama Cass: We once went to a cheesy Valentine's show at the planetarium that featured this song and a history of all the love-themed constellations. (I'm not sure this one even got played, but it was on the list.)

There was some non-romantic friend dancing too, naturally.

We got a little bow-chicka-bow-bow on the dance floor.

I had this strategy going into the reception, which I'd shared with Mr. Unicycle ahead of time. I can't remember where I read this tip, but someone once said that you should try to spend the entire reception at your new spouse's side so you two have the same memories of the night. I thought that was a really sweet idea, and I also think it would be kind of sad if I ignored my new husband at our wedding reception, so I took this advice seriously. We were apart for some of the night, obviously, but we pretty much stuck close to each other on the dance floor.

One of our guests even commented to my parents that they'd never seen a couple dance with each other so much at their wedding reception before. Success.

What's your reception "strategy?" And what are you must-have slow songs?

Monday, March 25, 2013

Two Wheels Become One: Photobooth Phun

I was adamant about having a photobooth (or fauxtobooth, if we're being honest with ourselves) at our wedding. I wanted people to think our wedding was fun, and photobooths are just about the most fun thing ever. I also selfishly wanted to see all the hilarious photos after the wedding was over.

For props, I printed out the photobooth props sets from Oh Happy Day, picking and choosing which to use. For instance, the Batman mask and Princess Beatrice's wedding hat were definite musts. The Native American headdress and mustaches (per Mr. U's request) were omitted. He claimed to not want any mustaches on sticks at his wedding because they were too hipster. I argue that he didn't want them because they've become passé, which actually makes him a hipster himself. Or something. Either way, mustaches on sticks were not invited to our photobooth. But Batman was one of the most popular props.

The big yellow frame was also a popular prop. I bought it from Ikea and had my MIL spray paint it yellow, inspired by Mrs. Cardigan's photobooth. After the wedding I turned the frame into a white board that visitors can use to leave us messages at our house.

Some crazy shit went down in that photobooth:

And there were some nice family photos too:

A few people used our white board speech bubbles, but I wish more had left us messages.
Clockwise from top left:: "I don't know them," "I'm with drunk Batman," "I'm with the other wedding party," and my favorite, "Is that Miss Unicycle girl single? NO! But you are about to be..."

These fools tried to take their own Marquette alumni shot:

Little did they know, we already had one planned:
It's funny that we didn't even meet some of these people while we were at Marquette. Two of them are our brothers, one is a friend from high school, one is a post-college coworker, and one goes to med school with Mr. Unicycle. But we're all alumni. Small world!

We were going to submit one of these to the alumni magazine, but then we got lazy.

Another table shot:
A lot of people just took nice, normal shots. I love the juxtaposition with the crazayy backdrop. 

Our vendors even got in on the action.
Photo by Jennifer Shaffer Photography (well, technically not since she's in the photo, but whatever.)

 left photo by Jennifer Shaffer Photography / right photo personal
My MOH and I wanted to recreate this pic

I really wanted a sassy drinking pic with my bridesmaids, but we waited too long and they were all three sheets to the wind. Alcohol wins.

Somehow our centerpieces found their way into the photobooth too. I'm glad they got a second time to shine.
 And this picture would be adorbs if my necklace hadn't broken and if we'd been smart enough to figure out how to hold the speech bubbles. Oh well, you can't have beauty and brains, right?

I am so glad we ended up doing a photobooth. If you're on the fence about it, I can't recommend it enough. I know I say that about a lot of things. But I just like all the things. Seriously though, despite how much I hated making the backdrop, I would do it again in a heartbeat.

Do you love weddings that have photobooths? What do you think of mustaches on sticks?

Friday, March 22, 2013

Two Wheels Become One: The Tosses

We did the bouquet and garter tosses back-to-back, toward the end of the night. These tosses weren't just accidental happenings--they were premeditated! I had written them into the schedule for the night (which was distributed to all wedding party VIPs and vendors), plus I crafted a garter and bought a mini bouquet specifically for the tosses. We even picked special songs to use. We were serious about the task of tossing.

I chose No Doubt's "Just a Girl" for the bouquet toss because:
  • It has "girl" in the title and refrain
  • It's featured in my favorite movie of all time, Clueless.
  • Hopefully its feminist message could cancel out the whole girls-fighting-over-a-bouquet thing. 
  • It wasn't "Single Ladies." I hate that song.
I look like a robot-bride.

It ended up landing on the floor, right at one of my bridesmaids' feet, but she was too drunk to know what was going on, so Mr. Unicycle's little cousin stepped in and claimed it as her own. I respect that.

Next up was the down n' dirrrty garter toss. They sat me in a chair in the middle of the dance floor, turned on Michael Buble's "Feeling Good," and gathered the single guys.

We chose "Feeling Good" because of the sock dance. We wouldn't have even considered a different song. 

When your husband goes up your skirt in front of everyone you know, there's nothing you can do but laugh awkwardly.

This is Mr. Unicycle saying "Why is this so heavy?? What is this made of?"

Here's a close-up:
Hahaha I love this guy.

I don't think I ever blogged about my garter, but I used Mrs. Honey's tutorial and glued fabric flowers and pearls (leftover from my necklace) to a piece of stretchy lace. The flowers were made of some fabric I bought on a whim the day Mr. Unicycle proposed, and it was also my "something blue," which made it extra sentimental.

Somehow we didn't get any pictures of it, so this heavily zoomed in, gratuitous-thigh shot is all I have to offer you.

The pearls I used were really heavy and, as you can see, I used quite a few. That thing was so heavy on my thigh all damn day, so it was a big relief to have it removed. Because of its heft, it became a dangerous projectile when Mr. Unicycle launched it across the dance floor, but luckily no one was injured.

As I was lovingly crafting this garter before the wedding, I remember thinking that I wanted to ask whoever caught it to give it back to me for sentimental purposes, but I didn't know if that was considered rude or not. Luckily, one of our good friends caught it, and before I even had a chance to ask for it back he came up to me and said "what am I supposed to do with this??" So now I own it again. What am I supposed to do with it?

Are you having a bouquet and garter toss? If so, are you using your real bouquet and garter, or are you using stand-ins?

Monday, March 18, 2013

Two Wheels Become One: We Holla for a Dolla

By far, my most controversial Weddingbee post was about whether or not to do a dollar dance. I personally don't get why it's that controversial. I get that some people are insulted by the bride and groom "asking for money," but the way I see it, it's like paying a penny or a nickel to make a wish in a fountain: a dollar in today's economy is just really not that much. You can't even get a Redbox rental for a dollar anymore.

According to smart people, the value of a dollar decreases by 50% every 24 years or so, and according to Martha Stewart, the dollar dance has existed since at least 1912, which means the value of each dollar I received was approximately 6 cents of what it was originally.

Plus, you really don't have to participate if you don't want to. I don't think I've ever participated in someone else's dollar dance, because I'm awkward.

What I liked about the dollar dance was the systematized dancing with our guests. Sure, I was probably going to dance with my dad and brother, and Mr. Unicycle's dad and several close friends, but I liked that I could spend some time with random uncles and second cousins without it being weird (that sentence was weird though, wasn't it?) The dollar was just the way to break the ice and make it more of an event--like the bouquet toss or the cake cutting, for instance. In the end, our desire to dance with our guests trumped our fear of tackiness.

I was tempted to ask the DJ to only play money-related music during the dollar dance, such as "If I Had a Million Dollars," "Money," and "Mo Money Mo Problems," but I decided that tempo/lyrics were more important than puns when it came to slow dancing with people you wouldn't normally dance with. For instance, I'm really glad they didn't play Rihanna's "S&M" while I was dancing with my FIL's friend.

We did end up making quite a bit of money, but I think some of guests were overly generous. We used the money to finance a snorkeling excursion on our honeymoon, and we got to spend some time with guests who we may not otherwise have seen much, so it was a win-win.

So tell me, what do you think about the dollar dance? Would you do it at your wedding? Am I an incredibly tacky, entitled bridezilla? Don't hold back.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Two Wheels Become One: Our Rockin' Dance Party

The majority of the reception was a series of poorly executed, sweaty dance moves amid a backdrop of Top 40 hits. Our dance floor was pretty packed from the very beginning of the night (except for some reason during Michael Jackson's "PYT." I personally think that song is unrivaled in its catchiness, but only Mr. Unicycle and I danced to it. We also featured it in our video--that's how much I love those dope beatz).

But save for that one song, the dance floor was full of awkward limb movements, inappropriate booty shaking, and the white man overbite the rest of the night.

 Image via Funny or Die

There was a conga line at my wedding, so I can die happy.

There was also do-si-do-ing

I think anyone who got married in 2012 has a photo like this.

I told you I love going butt-to-butt

I had trouble narrowing down which photos to include, so I made some collages. There are some pretty good facial expressions in them. There's also some pretty good old-people-dancing. I won't name names.

I love songs that instruct the entire dance floor to do the same thing at the same time. It makes me feel like I'm in the prom scene from She's All That.

I was definitely fist pumping.

Apparently I verbally abused my new husband on the dance floor too. He looks #notimpressed

The logistics of this photo confuse me. It appears as if my sister-in-law is giving a peace sign, but I think it's an optical illusion and she's really only holding up one finger. Thoughts?

Between the rockin' playlist, the open bar, and the fact that I only invited party animals to my wedding, the place was hoppin'. I kept drifting from group to group throughout the night, trying to make sure I spent enough time with everyone who was there, which got kind of stressful. For the most part, we spent time with our families during dinner when we went from table to table, but on the dance floor we mostly spent time with friends. That's probably for the best anyway. Can you imagine bumpin' and grindin' with your great uncle and being all "How's work going? I got your Christmas card! Lovely photo!" while Chris Brown blares in the background? Awkward.

Are you having a rockin' dance party reception?