TheDress

26 Jun

There are so many different styles of wedding dresses and when I made my appointment to try some on, I told my four ladies to pick away and I would try them all on to know what style fit me best. We picked some with lace, some that were very form fitting, others that had straps or sleeves, and the list continues of some mermaid style dresses, A-line, and a fiesta style dress that made me feel like the emoji of the woman dancing in a red dress.

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Here is my story…

I invited my mom, my sister, Dan’s mom, and his sister. I have not picked my bridesmaids yet, and wanted only family to be involved with choosing my dress. I felt like this is something I needed four totally different opinions for. Each person has their own individual style and I knew each of these ladies would give me their honest opinions.

Each girl picked 2-3 dresses for me to try on and so I started working away, trying on dress after dress taking photos of the front and back and walking around to see how it flowed. It reminded me of house hunting. After about eight dresses we figured out my style. I would put one on and right away I knew if it was a yes or no and the pile started to dwindle down. I had narrowed it down to two dresses and then one that I really liked and took the information down, but wanted to sleep on it to see if that was the dress.

Dan’s mom and sister had to head back to work, but after we were done at the first place, my sister recommended we go check out another place since we had the day off. So we hopped in the car, and headed over to Amanda’s Bridal. In my mind, I knew I liked that dress that I had put on at the other place, but you always hear that girls get emotional when they put on the dress. I have never been a super girly girl so maybe that is normal for me to not get emotional. Well. I was wrong.

At Amanda’s I walked in and was very honest with the assistant letting her know I wanted to try some on, but most likely am not going to buy today. We picked some out, tried them on, took some photos and then I put on dress number four, walked out, Tina- my assistant put some accessories with it, and when I turned around and looked at myself in the mirror the waterworks began. I turned around and then my sister, mom, and even Tina started to get teary-eyed and Tina says, “Well I don’t think we thought this was going to happen!” And she rushed around looking for tissues. I had found the dress. What! Is this for real? Let me try on one more just in case.

I put on another dress that I actually really did like, but just knew that the last dress made me feel like a bride. I put the previous dress back on and just remember my mom asking, “Are we buying a dress today?” And I said, “Yes!” This dress is amazing and I cannot wait to walk down the aisle to marry the man of my dreams.

First big item to check off the list. Now it’s the when and where that we need to figure out. :)image2

Engagement

8 Jun chamagne

May 23, 2015. He put a ring on it.

After a few weeks of shock, I can now sit down and write about the perfect engagement and how I cannot believe the time has finally come for us to plan a wedding and for me to be Mrs. Bullock.

As some of you know- Dan and I have been dating for almost five years, we have lived together for four, and have been doggie parents for three. He is the man of my dreams and no matter when you would have asked us, the answer to the question, “When are you two getting married,” was always, “three to five years.” You could have asked me on May 22 and I still would have answered the same. I literally had no idea a proposal was coming, so let me tell you about the surprise.

Over Memorial Day weekend, my best friend Kelli came into town and was staying with us and had plans to meet up with some old co-workers on Saturday the 23rd. Dan and I knew that with having a friend in town, the events are non-stop, and so we had planned that for the few hours she was away, we would go rent a movie, grab some food, and relax. As she left to go meet up with her co-workers, Dan and I ordered a pizza, grabbed a Redbox movie and were just excited to sit on the couch and do nothing. As we pulled onto our block from picking everything up, I noticed a woman mowing her lawn with a push mower and a baby sitting in a stroller, and she looked like she was struggling. I looked at Dan and insisted that we let her use our lawn mower. He gave me this look like ‘why is she always trying to be so nice’ and so when we parked, he went inside and I brought her our mower. When I got back inside, he had put in the movie and put down the curtains to block out the sunlight (it was maybe only 6:30pm). Right before the movie started, Dan says, “Don’t ask any questions, but I have a romantic night planned and just want you to relax. So don’t get up off the couch and let me take care of you.”

Jackpot. I get to just sit here and be catered to. Okay.

At around 7:30pm, Dan gets up off the couch and announces something along the lines of his first romantic act. He goes into our guest bedroom and brings me out a letter. I start to read it and immediately start crying. It talked about how technically we are married by common law, that he knows he wants me in his life forever, and is “80%, maybe 90% sure he wants to propose someday.” I just thought it was super cute and it got me pretty emotional. And then, he announces his second romantic act. This is where he has something behind his back and as he sits on the couch next to me he says that he knows he has never got me any jewelry, but wanted to get me something small and he pulls out the jewelry box and this is where my heart started to burst out of my chest. I of course was hoping it was an engagement ring, but didn’t want to get too crazy in case it was earrings or something else. Then he got down on one knee while I then proceeded to ball my eyes out and said yes a few too many times while he proposed.

After the initial shock of him proposing to me, Dan told me to call my mom to tell her the good news. I call her and at first she cannot hear me. The phone is breaking out. Of course… Thanks stupid cell phone. I yell over the phone that I am balling my eyes out and that Dan proposed. She tells me to go outside or something because she really cannot hear me. Annoyingly, I go outside and to my surprise, my family, his family, and a few close friends were hiding in our back yard, ready to celebrate. Tears cue up one more time.

We pop champagne, take photos, cheers, and celebrate our engagement the best way I could have ever imagined. Dan truly did an amazing job planning everything and I cannot wait to celebrate the rest of our lives together.

And from now on- every time I do something nice, I am hoping for some jewelry—kidding. To back track, Dan was a little freaked out when I brought our neighbor the lawn mower, because at about that time was when people were supposed to be heading over to the house for the surprise. I could have ruined everything, but luckily it all worked out and the secret was still safe.

BootCamp

13 May bootcamp2

You want to kick your own butt while having someone coach you? You want to get bikini ready for summer? You want to drop that last 10lbs before your high school reunion? Well….. I found something that may work for all of that, plus some.

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Last night I attended my first Boot Camp class that my gym hosts. I am hesitant to say that CrossFit South Denver hosts it because the term “CrossFit” scares people away. But this is just the SPACE they are using. If you are someone who is looking to do more body weight movements, not pick up a barbell, and to get a good 20-30 minute workout in with an intimate group of people, then I am not joking, you need to try out Boot Camp at CrossFit South Denver.

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To give you an insider tip- here was what we did last night, but know that each time you step foot into Boot Camp expect something new. Shelby, the instructor led us through a warm up, workout, and cool down all within one hour. The workout consisted of body weight movements, but we also incorporated a box and a kettlebell. Each person was able to scale to their ability and each person was sweating at the end of the workout.  If sweating, scaling to your own ability, and fitting it all in within an hour appeases you, on Tuesday nights at 6:30pm and Saturday mornings at 10am come join Boot Camp for $25 per drop in, which includes a shirt.

2ndBest

15 Apr

Last weekend I did something I have not done in over a year. First, on Friday April 10th, while on my lunch break I decided to use the Map My Fitness App and run a 5k to test out my time because on Sunday, I would be participating in my first 5k race SINCE 2013!

Ready, set, go! I had my favorite running playlist on and converted my app to kilometers so that I would know my pace per KM. First KM, 5:05. Second KM, 4:55. And then I stayed in this window for the rest of the run. I completed my Lunch-Time 5K in 24:28 an all-time personal record (PR) for myself. I could not even contain my excitement and went straight to Instagram to share my happy face, time, and route.

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Then Sunday morning came. I had offered to volunteer with the 2015 Frank Shorter RACE4Kid’s Health 5k, and they had informed me that I would have time to run the race if I wanted to do so and so I figured, “why not?” I will be there anyways. So, I signed up for the 5k that would start around 9am in Arista-Broomfield.

It was a beautiful day. When we started at 9am, it was probably around 60F degrees and sunny. One major downfall though- wind. Lots of it. Holy crap was it windy on Sunday. This was the first time I wished I had worn sunglasses on my run. I do not know why, but I just don’t enjoy wearing sunglasses when I run. Whatever, that is besides the point. Back to the wind… and the construction going on at Arista. Wind and construction do not mix. Dust and dirt was flying everywhere, and although the wind helped when it was on my back, it sucked at every other angle. I knew I wasn’t going to PR my race time, but still tried my best. 24 minutes and 54 seconds later I crossed the finish line at the 1STBank Center and to my surprise, I was sitting in second place in my 20-29Female category.

I enjoyed my post breakfast meal and watched other people cross the finish line, snapped a photo with Mr. Frank Shorter himself, who, if you don’t know, won the gold medal in the Marathon at the 1972 Summer Olympics. His personal record for the Marathon is 2hours and 10minutes. I am taking that in. And so should you. That is a pace of 3:08 per KM, and exactly 5 minute miles. Holy crap. That is fast.

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At the end of the day, I won 2nd place and got the silver! I have never placed in the top 3 in any race or competition I have entered and was so excited.

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To any of you who are training for you next run, or long distance bike race, a crossfit competition or whatever just know that you may always surprise yourself and while you are competing, just remember to have fun and to use whatever advantages you can, like the wind at my back for example.

Yoga

4 Feb

One night of heated candle light yoga. So refreshed. Next morning.. Worst night sleep of my life. I was so dehydrated, but that was just poor planning on my part. The class was from 8-9pm and my bedtime is 9pm (Dan and I wake up before the sun comes out at 4:30am) and so after I showered, brushed my teeth and finally laid down in bed I could not relax. But given all of the negative stuff that went on the next day with how tired I felt, I couldn’t explain to anybody how rejuvenating it was and how amazing I felt in that moment in yoga the night before.  People may say the bags under my eyes told a different story, but I was hooked.

Don’t worry. I am not switching from CrossFit to Yoga, but I knew I needed to add yoga into my life for a better wellbeing and to give myself at least an hour of stretching to have better flexibility and to become more mobile. I signed up for a free week to try it out and to make sure it was something I was interested in and came to find out that I feel like a million bucks when I am sweating my ass off in the Heated Yoga class.

Well hello super special deal at Core Power in Broomfield. For $49 I got a one month membership and can attend ANY class at ANY Core Power in the Nation. What a steal. If anyone wants to give yoga a shot- take this deal and run with it. I doubt it will be around for long. I have now been a member at Core Power for one week and want to scream at the top of my lungs that I FEEL SO AWESOME. I feel more positive, more grounded, relaxed, and most of all when I am sweating it out, I feel like I am sweating all of the nasty, bad attitudes, and any negativity that I may carry with me day-to-day. In this hour of yoga practice I am one with myself and no one can enter my thoughts except myself. How awesome is that. No phone. No computer. No interruptions. Just you, your mat, and your breath.

Now with that little write up, why wouldn’t you try it out?

MyFirstWeightliftingMeet

5 Dec

Two years ago I would have never thought I would enter myself into an Olympic Weightlifting Competition. Two years ago when I started Crossfit, weightlifting as an individual sport wasn’t talked about as often as it is now. It has slowly crept its way in, and now there is a big difference that has been brought to my attention-There is Olympic Weightlifting and #CrossfitLifts. The latter is typically considered a sloppy type of weightlifting that includes pressing out, lacks squatting or getting under the bar, and is done for multiple reps in the middle of a workout. Since about June 2014 I have wanted to do an Olympic Weightlifting competition, but never thought I was good enough to even try. I lifted close to nothing when I compared myself to other people competing and my form was definitely considered “crossfitty.”

I worked with Tom and Annah Borak at Barbell Club at CrossFit 6th Ave & CrossFit Denver (RIP) and then continued to work with them at Barbell Nation at CrossFit South Denver. They are both amazing coaches and Annah is very inspirational – She is about 115lbs and lifts more than me. She is badass. It didn’t get real until September when I started participating in Max Out Saturdays and then in November took the plunge after some peer pressure and I signed up for my first meet.

Let me tell you. I get that I-am-going-to-pee-my-pants feeling before every competition, but something that was SO different in this meet was that all eyes really were on me. It is just you, the platform, three judges, and a crowd. With no music. Whoa. Totally different from my norm. In a race, I am running with thousands of other people with headphones in. In a CrossFit competition I am doing the same workout as 5-25 other people with music blaring and the only people watching me is my family or friends who came to watch me. This I-am-going-to-pee-my-pants feeling was probably the most nervous I have ever been.  But I turned those nerves into something positive and went 5 for 6 on my lifts and even hit a personal record (PR) on my Clean & Jerk. Hell yes- let me tell you that story…..

I decided a few days before to open my snatch with 85lbs and my clean and jerk at 110lbs. Let me take you back to 2013. My PR Clean and Jerk was 100lbs. I was going to OPEN ten pounds heavier than what used to be my PR just a little more than a year ago. When I started CrossFit 75lbs was my Snatch PR. So again, opening ten pounds heavier than what used to be my all-time best. It’s cool to think about that.

In a Weightlifting Meet you have three attempts to snatch and three attempts to clean and jerk. The goal is to lift more than anyone else in your weight class. You can fail two of the three lifts and still get a total number. I went five for six and wouldn’t change any of the weights I tried. As for snatch I opened with 85lbs, my second lift was 95lbs, and then at that time my PR was 107 and so I tried for 110lbs as my third and final lift. I missed it. Oh well. Next time. For my clean and jerk I opened at 110lbs, for my second lift I jumped to 125lbs, and then for my third lift I wanted to try and PR, so I tried for 142.5lbs. I got it! I PR’d at my first weightlifting meet. Hell yes.

This meet will not be my last. Ready to get involved in weightlifting more and only get stronger from here on out.

SummerOfWeddings

6 Nov

Dan and I went to seven – yes seven – weddings this summer….

I have been with the man of my dreams for four years now; we have a home and a dog, so we are practically married. We just don’t wear the rings, or have the signed marriage license.  But I am 27, and Dan is 29 so as society has so kindly done for us, we are getting to the age where everyone is asking us, “When are you going to get married.” Dan always says three to five years, no matter when you ask. I always say we are in no rush to have kids, so why would there be a rush to get married. And that is the truth, we love each other, the house has already put us in a 30-year bond, and there is no rush- but there is that girly part of me that wants a wedding day and wants to put together a party to celebrate our love and so I went to Facebook and asked for advice. I just said to lay it out and tell me the good, the bad, the pretty and the ugly, and that I would make anything they tell me anonymous. So are you ready? Are you thinking you want to get married? Well take some of these tips from people who have already been through it. Here is the big fat list to help you out.

I wanted nothing to do with picking out my engagement ring.

If the woman picks out the ring it takes away from the surprise and fun.

We got his ring off Etsy for $30. After getting him sized and seeing what he liked at another jeweler, we ended up finding something he liked online for cheaper and we figured we could upgrade later.

At Shane Co. they have a sweet upgrade policy, but even after years and years of being married we have never upgraded.

Biggest thing to know for the guys is that the new, cool alternative metals (tungstun, cobalt, titantium, etc) will break if you drop them on a hard surface (tile, concrete, etc). The material is scratch resistant, but very fragile — and they can’t be resized…EVER. So if for whatever reason he ever needs a different size, you have to buy a brand new one. Be careful, because most jewelers will not tell you the truth about that.

We planned our wedding in five months and we wouldn’t change that for the world. Less time to change our mind.

From the time we got engaged to the date of our wedding will be 4 1/2 months and I’m SO thankful it’s short.

You have to enjoy the planning part. It should be exciting.

We got married out of state so we hired a wedding planner who would check out venues for us, and pretty much picked everything out for us perfectly.

A lot of things about the day you need to leave it up to the professionals as well. They do this for a living for a reason.

We chose October for our wedding because of the leaves changing colors, but also we didn’t want to get married during “wedding season.”

We chose a Thursday because on Fridays & Saturdays, the Venue we wanted holds two weddings a day and we wanted to pick a time and have it embed our day and not run into any other couples or feel rushed.

We picked our date because our boyfriend/girlfriend anniversary happened to be on a Saturday the year we were getting married. So our wedding anniversary is the same anniversary we celebrated as teenagers.

If you are planning an outdoor wedding, have a plan B.  We planned every little detail and the weather the day of didn’t allow for us to do half the stuff on the list. That being said, our wedding was still perfect.

Get married in the off season. We chose a Friday in the off season, and is saved us $5,000 for the venue.

Our venue allows us to bring our own alcohol which saves tons and tons of money since they don’t have a liquor license but have a serving license.

Choosing a venue that is naturally beautiful saves money as well as you don’t have to spend as much on decorations.

Addressing the invites are a pain in the butt.

Invitations typically cost anywhere between $500-$2000…especially when you factor in the cost of postage.

No one will remember what your invite looked like, because it will most likely end up in the trash after the wedding.

Usually a one person invite assumes a plus one. While someone else said: The only time I think it is fair to invite a guest is if it is addressed that way, for example: George Smith & Guest or +1.

We needed to control our guest list a little bit more, so people who didn’t have an OBVIOUS significant other were not allocated a +1. Not to be super rude, but if I’m choosing between guests, I’m not allocating for a complete RANDOM stranger to be at my wedding.

The outer envelope is for the formal Mr. George Smith, the inner envelope would be George Smith & Judy Routh. That is where you add the “and guest”, or family, or just for the single guest.

For our ceremony we told everyone it was a no kids wedding.

We have nieces and nephews, really young cousins, etc., but we still wanted our wedding to be a kid free zone to hang out, party, drink and just enjoy. We have been to PLENTY of weddings that there a crying child during the ceremony. Yes they are a part of the family but there is a time and place for little ones. We were at the point we did not care if we offended someone by saying no kids. It is our day and we wanted it to be just adults.

RSVP card has a space for their names, and then underneath it says “We have reserved ____ seats for you at our wedding.” That way a family of five, whose RSVP card says “2” in that blank, can kind of get the picture that it’s not everyone.

Our dinner was plated and the food was $47 per person including booze, food, service, charges, tip, etc.

Most all inclusive places will cut/serve your cake for free – but make sure, because we went to places that charged $1/slice (OBNOXIOUS)

We had a tight RSVP list because it cost $60 per guest to attend the wedding.

We invited 135 people including ourselves. Take a second. If you have 135 guests, at $60 per person that is $8,100.

We spent about $20 on dessert for the entire wedding. No joke. We did root-beer floats. Everyone loved it.

We love this taco food truck and normally get full spending $10 for both of us, so we figured we would contact them for our wedding. The minute we told them it was for a wedding, the prices drastically changed and it was going to be around $30 per person. We said screw it and found somewhere cheaper and it actually only ended up costing $13 per person and it was awesome.

Gooooood luck budgeting. Costs go up depending on your guest list, the alterations on the dress, the veil, jewelry, gifts, details, craft projects, party favors.

Nothing, and I mean NOTHING is included, obvious, or free.

You can barter/negotiate on everything. It’s exhausting, but because it’s a service, and people want your business, they have flexibility…so ask!

Before you even start/think about looking at venues, vendors, dates, etc. I would make a list of EVERYTHING that you can think of that goes into a wedding (venue, invitations, dress, alcohol, pictures, flowers, honeymoon, etc) and then I would rank the items on that list as to what actually matters to you. That way you can put the most priority on what actually matters — this seems like extreme common sense, but as far as budget is concerned too it helps you stay on track for the stuff you actually care about and not overspend on things that are lower on the list.

Party favors, or gifts for the guests is such a big expense.

We are giving our guests a photo booth for their ‘gift’

We don’t want our party favors to be anything edible. We want it to be something they can have forever.

The best party favor I ever received at a wedding was a Cuban cigar and pink flip flops to dance in that we could take home at the end of the night. Both from the same wedding.

We paid for the bulk of the wedding, and that made for a lot less family drama. We could make our own decisions, because it was our money.

All the drama comes from your family and guests.

Don’t get too carried away with Pintrest. Be original.

Don’t have a groom’s cake. There will be more than enough dessert.

We didn’t even have a cake. We don’t eat cake normally – so why would we invest money into one. We had a few family members who didn’t agree with us and said that we were breaking tradition, but it was our wedding and the best advice I can give is to make it your own.

Centerpieces don’t matter, people won’t remember them. They are expensive and just get thrown away afterwards.

I think centerpieces are fun and some people think they’re a hassle. We’re making all of ours because it’s fun and less expensive. Some florists can do full centerpieces as a convenience if you’re interested. I’ve had three friends do it and had a super positive experience and they felt like it was worth the cost.

Spend your money on good photography. That is what you have to remember the day for the rest of your life.

Make sure that if you go over 150 guests that you get two photographers

Thank you cards are a must. They are common courtesy.

According to etiquette you have three months to send them out.

As a guest, I would like to receive a thank you card just as a reassurance that you got the gift. This seems silly, but with all of those cards lying around one could get misplaced, or heaven forbid; stolen. So I think thank you cards should be a priority.

All I can say, is go with it.

Expect for 10 things to go wrong, because then you can’t be disappointed. If only seven things go wrong, it’s a win. You can’t expect the day to be perfect.

Enjoy the process. It is hard at times, but it is worth it in the end.

Do what you think you and your fiancé want. What really matters at the end of the day is that you are married to your best friend.

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