Wednesday, May 8, 2013

On Amy Schumer, Soda, and Booze

Happy Hump Day, Bloggies!

Congrats on making it (almost) halfway through your week. Only two more days of either not noticing what day it is because you don't work or hair-pulling agony because you want to see Friday afternoon so bad you can taste it. Either way, I applaud you.

So, today is gonna be a little all-over-the-map, so to speak. I usually write myself little notes on my thoughts that I have for blog topics, and last night was a busy night for my notebook. Some days are good like that - me furiously scribbling down notes on interesting thoughts and topics to write about. Others are more like me thinking of something funny, and then considering getting my notepad, and then deciding that staying on the couch is the best option. You win some, you lose some. Moving on!

Note 1:

- Amy Schumer is basically a white, female, Jewish version of Dave Chappelle. Am I wrong? Race, sex, religion, sex, bowel movements, sex. It's all there. And what is it about Jewish girls that makes them (us) so funny?? Is it the guilt?  Is it the ever-present dichotomy of eating eating eating yet being told to stay thin? I ask you, who can eat kugel and then never eat carbs again?? NO ONE! When will the madness end? Take a look at this clip from her new show. Is it not more than slightly reminiscent of Dave's sketch about the blind black man who joins the KKK? No? Is that just me?

Note 2:

- Why the hell do fast-food restaurants offer various size options for their drinks if they are all THE SAME PRICE? If I have to listen to one more "team" member tell me I should just go ahead and get the large because it is the same price as the medium in that tone of voice that suggests I just crawled out from under a rock because don't I know that all drinks are the same price and why don't I want a gallon of soda and why do they have to explain this to me because isn't it posted on the sign above their head and ughhhhhhh...never mind, they'll just give me a medium. Seriously, just have one size. Call it, "Pee Your Pants", call it, "Bladder Buster", call it, "Can't Sleep For Two Days Because I Just Drank The Sugar Equivalent Of An Eight Ball." I think what pisses me off more than the extra time it takes to go through this process of being told all about my poor decision in drink size, is the attitude that accompanies the being told about my poor decision. Like I need the clerk to sass me because I want a medium unsweet iced tea. I've taken to telling them about my small bladder in exchange for their helpful commentary.

Note 3:

- Why do parents refuse their childless friends booze at social occasions? Is it to punish us for not yet producing crumb snatchers? Is it to encourage us to leave the party within one hour of arriving? I hail from the camp of, "Cocktail Hour", which meant that any social gathering lasting more than 30 minutes was automatic grounds for a wet bar. But lately I have noticed a trend of dry showers, parties, dinners, or anything else including children. I'm not suggesting that we serve the kiddos a sippy cup of Pinot, I'm just saying the rest of us not operating poop-filled diapers and Bugaboo strollers would like the option of a not-so-virgin smoothie with our cupcakes. I wouldn't be so quick to judge if I had not been offered a sip from the ol' flask by a fellow party-goer or two over the last few months. And though I am not one to drink just anything, I have been known to suffer through a bad whiskey in dire circumstances. And sometimes that means Skippy the Clown's third rendition of "Mary Had A Little Lamb."

So, there it is, a peak into my notepad. I can't share all my thoughts in one day, obviously, because some of us have work to do. And by us I mean you.

Happy Wednesday,

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Let's Talk About Dress, Baby

Good Afternoon, Bloggies!

I hope this Tuesday afternoon finds you all well.

Today, I wanna talk about clothes. Specifically, the clothes we wear to work. You see, most of the work I do, I do from home. This means that the people I dress for are myself, the cats and the dog, and therefore more than half my intended audience comes to work naked...just to give you an idea of where this discussion is starting from.

However, there is one other person I work with, and that person is Brian. And as we all know, Brian is not one to follow the "norm." Brian has worked from home for two years now, and I think I have seen him work in his pajamas maybe a handful of times. The man likes to dress, and I mean DRESS, for work. He wears his slacks, his button downs, his loafers...the whole nine yards. When he's feeling fancy, he even puts on cologne.

I, on the other hand, am a subscriber to the theory that working from home means working in my PJ's. I've seen the commercials, you know the ones where the girl is all of 12 and making this great career for herself working from her couch in her PJ's and laughing at her computer screen like the data entry she is doing is a rendition of Monty Python performed entirely by an esoteric mouse troupe. No? Is that just me?

Anyways, that is the category of "dress" that I fall into. I do coordinate my lounge wear though, and keep it classy with bright colors and making sure I don't wear the 10-year-old Bishop Kenny shirt with the mustard stain. But honestly, I get paid for my brilliant writing and communications skills, not to look good, and for the most part my coworkers don't comment on my wardrobe. The other day, however, someone just couldn't keep their thoughts to themselves, BRIAN, and this conversation ensued:

Brian: What are you typing so furiously about over there? And why are you huffing and puffing?

Me: And blowing the house down? I am FINE. I am just commenting on an article online that is filled with completely misleading information.

Brian: Mmmm hmmm. How is that social media strategy coming along?

Me: Are you insinuating that I am wasting my time? Because I assure you I am not.

Brian: I'm just trying to figure out what you're working on.

Me: Serious journalism.

Brian: I may take you more seriously if you didn't say that while wearing Christmas pajamas. In May.

Me: I will thank you not on comment on my choice of outfit, Mr. "What do you mean a purple shirt doesn't go with blue shorts?"

I only wear the Christmas PJ's when all of my other "outfits" are in the wash. Or when it is Christmas...or somewhere around that season. Basically they are very comfortable and it is my house/office and Lord knows the cat isn't judging. And it's not like I don't own work-appropriate clothes. I worked in an office environment for years, so I have the skirts and dresses and slacks and boots and heels and button downs and on and on and on. I just don't enjoy wearing them to come to work in my living room.

I am alone in this? Is there anyone out there who dresses up for working from home? If you don't work in an environment where the dress code has been set for you, is it ok to make your own rules?

I think so.


- Shana

Friday, April 26, 2013

The Return of The Happy Hour

Happy Friday to you, Bloggies!!

It is the advent of Food Friday! I can't wait to talk food with you all. I have some really good stuff (I hope) this week, and so let's just jump right into it, shall we?


Blue Fish Oyster Bar
Jacksonville, Fl (Avondale)
What to get: Happy Hour

O.M.G Bloggies. This is a game changer. Though Blue Fish has been on the food scene in Jax for over a year, I think locals are just now starting to realize the potential in this hotspot, and in turn the owners are responding. The Happy Hour is THE BEST in town. Their drinks specials are awesome, don't get me wrong ($4 champagne? Yes, please!), but it is the FOOD that makes it stand out. From 3pm - 7pm every day, Blue Fish offers a drink and food menu at the bar that includes baked brie with truffle oil and herbs for $10, truffle fries with Parmesan for $3, ahi tuna/kimchi/spicy pork tacos for $3, mini filet served over homemade mash $4, oysters on the halfshell for $6/dozen, and on and on and on. Oh, did I mention mini pizzas?? PIZZA! For under $5!! And the kicker? The food is amazing! It is local, it is fresh, it is delish. And the place itself is beautiful. It is like stepping into an artfully designed under-sea dream. Blue jewel tones and aqua touches are the theme, with local art, blue glass installations, and crystal chandeliers round it out. I went there with the BFF for ladies' night out last week, and had two (ok, four) glasses of champagne, a tuna taco, and one (ok, two) orders of truffle fries, and my bill was under $29. CAN'T. BEAT. IT. So, go. Go now. Oh, and did I mention the complimentary valet parking?? In Avondale, no less.

You are welcome.


Sweet & Spicy Chili

This is no ordinary chili, though it eats like any man-pleasing bowl of meaty yummyness. The allspice and white pepper are the secret to this comfort food.

You will need:

1.5 lbs ground beef (I like sirloin, but then I'm fancy like that)
2 cans red kidney beans
1 15ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 large Spanish or sweet onion, diced
2 tsp olive oil
2 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp white pepper
2 tbsp ground cumin
2 tsp allspice
1 tbsp garlic powder
pinch cayenne pepper
pinch cinnamon
s&p to taste

In a large, high-sided skillet, heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add beef and onions and all spices, and cook until browned and tender. Add beans and tomatoes, and turn heat to medium low. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Turn heat to low, cover and simmer for one hour. Enjoy!

Isn't that the easiest recipe EVER? And it is soooooooooooo good. I like to serve mine with tortilla chips, diced red onion, diced jalapenos, chopped cilantro, and sour cream. And by serve, I mean make myself a huge bowl of it, and then go to town like no one is watching. Which I pray to God they are not because no one should have to see that display.

Also, this is a great recipe to make (probably a double batch) for a party, and set up a chili bar. Guests can help themselves, and I think it lends a fun and casual tone to any gathering. Just be sure to provide lots of napkins.

Now, since I happen to have some made, I am going to excuse myself so I can enjoy the fruits of my labor.

Have a great weekend!


Monday, April 22, 2013

"Why Is There Never Any Deodorant In My Purse?" And Other Burning Questions...

Happy Monday to you Bloggies!

I hope this rainy (here in Saint Augustine) morning finds you well, and that your weekend was filled with all kinds of fun and not-at-all embarrassing stories. I know mine was. AAAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAA. That is not at all true. My weekend was filled, like much (ok, all) of my life, with tons of embarrassment. Let's review, shall we?

So, you may or may not know that as of last year I am a freelance writer/editor. Since I am just starting out on what is sure to be a long and rewarding career filled with documenting and compiling tomes of information on all kinds of important people and events, let me disabuse you of the idea of the inherent "glamour" that most people think automatically permeates your life once someone decides to publish your work. If a career in writing is Mt. Everest, this girl is barely scratching at the small rocks at the very bottom of base camp one. But that is ok! Because this is what my esteemed life partner, Brian, calls "sweat equity."

Anywho, as a freelance writer, I do get the luxury of choosing for whom I write. However, I also have the distinct pleasure of constantly being "on" when I am around potential clients, i.e. anyone/everyone who so much as breathes in my direction and may/may not possibly hold the key to me breaking into their magazine/newspaper/website/personal journal only read by their Mother. And, this week, I got to test those skills. My hometown of Jacksonville, Florida hosted an event called "OneSpark" which was basically a huge crowd-sourcing event in the heart of downtown where artists, musicians, inventors, authors, etc. all gathered in the hopes of garnering enough votes to grab themselves a piece of the money pie. So, on Thursday, Brian and I took ourselves down to Jax and checked it out.

IT.WAS.AMAZING. The event, that is. But what was even more amazing was what happened AFTER the event. As Brian and I boarded the small tram that runs around the downtown area of Jacksonville, my spouse started kicking me in what I imagine he thought to be a subtle way, while simultaneously striking up a conversation with a man standing opposite us (as he does, because it is Brian's life philosophy that strangers are just friends you haven't met yet). So, Brian and this man get to talking, and words are exchanged about their pens, riding the tram, and then....OneSpark.

The man is writing about OneSpark. The man is the editor of a local newspaper, for which he is writing about OneSpark. And then it happened. I stuck my hand out, and said my name, and told the man I am a writer. He asked if I am freelance. I said "yes." He lit up like a Christmas tree and handed me his card. I asked if he wanted my writing samples, he said "yes." He walked off the train. I pinched myself.

As soon as the man was gone, I turned to Brian and we had the following conversation:

Me: So, how would you say I handled that?

Brian: Like a teenager backstage at a Justin Bieber concert.

Me: **thinking**...Ok, so not as bad as I thought.

1. I am incapable of being calm and collected in pretty much any situation, but especially one in which I am discussing writing. CAN'T.DO.IT. Because I love writing, and I love when other people love writing, and I love when I get to talk to other people who love writing about how much we both love writing and the possibilities of writing. Writing. It's where it's at.

2. I like to think that my enthusiasm (read, crazy eyes) is one of my most charming qualities. I am almost certain that the opportunity to meet someone in the newspaper/magazine industry will never lose its sparkle for me. I love what I do, and there's just no hiding it. And I get really excited (read, shaky with uncontrollable bouts of sweating) when I make that connection with others in my industry.

3. It is my belief that writers, in general, are all slightly socially awkward. We spend a lot of time in our own heads, putting words together, forming ideas, brainstorming, conceptualizing, whatever you want to call it. Our ideas are born of our experience, and those ideas are molded first in our brains, which is unfortunately not always a public space. Therefore, it is my theory that it takes time and much concerted effort to not look/act like a teenager backstage at a Just Bieber concert when we meet someone that not only possibly holds the key to another door of our career, but for whom we also hold a great amount of respect just by virtue of the fact that they are living our dream job every day.

So, now the man has my writing samples. Who knows if anything will come of it. I'm just really, really happy I got the chance. And that I did not yell at Brian for kicking me. I have learned that he only does it when trying to get my attention, and it's his way of saying, "Please do not say anything about your profuse sweating right now because I am attempting to introduce you to someone."

Is it just me, Bloggies? Do you get nervous or really excited when you meet others in your industry? Does that go away with time?

**side note** Lots of talk of sweating in this post. Am I right? Of course I am, it's my blog. Maybe it is because it is officially "Spring" and in Florida that means "Varying Degrees of Surface of the Sun."


Thursday, April 4, 2013

As Though Anyone Still Cares At This Point...

Hey Bloggies!!
So, ummmmm, three months later, here is the conclusion of my wedding picture post. I won't go into details as to why it has taken me so long. Let's just leave it at Shana finally got her shit together and posted some pictures. Ok? Ok.
Actually, truth be told, I was watching the Today show, whatdya know, TODAY, and they were talking about love and marriage and that triggered some mechanism in my head that allowed the little steal ball of blog posting reminders to roll its way through the obstacle course of my mind and into the cup up front that says, "Hey! Shana! Let's get our shit together and finish our wedding picture blog." And then when I was done wondering why I  was speaking to myself in third person, I got out my laptop aaaaaaand here we are.
We left off with a picture of Brian and I enjoying a moment to ourselves after our wedding portraits, and we will pick up with our announcement as Husband and Wife. Let's go!

Here we are getting ready for our first dance. I ripped the bottom seam of my dress walking up the stairs, OF COURSE, because what else would I expect of myself on a day when, literally, my only responsibility is to walk from place to place whilst others coordinate announcements and music and pretty much everything save for my keeping myself standing. Way to go, me.

Our first dance. Brian looking at me lovingly. We danced to "You Are The Best Thing" by Ray LaMontagne. It was magical. Though, apparently not as magical as the fact that you can see up my Sister-in-Law's skirt in this picture. But whatevs.

My beautiful Grandma Donna and her Manfriend, Hank. Let me tell you, Hank stole the show that day. He is a dancing fool, that man.

Brian and I on the balcony of our wedding venue.

Photobomb by our friend, Herb. This is not the last you will see of him. Watch out for his wicked yoga moves on the dance floor. 

Me and my Pops dancing our Grandfather/Granddaughter dance. We danced to Louis Armstrong's, "What a Wonderful World," because what can I say except that Pops makes my world wonderful. Not a dry eye IN THE HOUSE.  It's ok, I will wait while you get the tissues. 
Brian and Mamma Sue dancing to "How Sweet It Is." This was a really cute moment between them :)

The bouquet toss. Whoever said you can't run in heels has never met my girlfriends.

I'm not sure if you can tell in this photo, but there was pretty much a UFC match upon the downward arc of the bouquet. No one was injured....too badly.


The garter toss! So, I have never considered myself a very prudish person necessarily. I went to Catholic School, after all. But apparently my face is not ok with my leg being felt up by my HUSBAND in full view of my parents and family and friends and waiters and...oh my, did it turn some crazy shades of red before I leaned in and whispered in Brian's ear, "Get your hand out of my dress before I break it off." It was a very romantic moment.

Brian and I dedicated a song to my Grandparents in honor of their wedding anniversary being a few days after our wedding date. It was their 57th anniversary. So, the four of us danced to Don Williams', "You're My Best Friend." Again, not a dry eye to be seen. In fact, I looked over at my Grandparents at one point during the dance and my Grandfather was singing the song to my Grandmother! You'll excuse me if I go and get a tissue?

Time to get funky! Brian breaking it down with Aunt Sandy and Aunt Sharon.

All this girl needed was some Hall & Oates and a dance circle!

Ryan Dill, our groomsman. Let's just say Ryan was popular with the ladies that weekend. And pretty much every weekend. Oh, and did I mention he is also a doctor who travels to the far reaches of the globe to help those less fortunate than himself? Is there no limit to your amazingness, RYAN?

Cupid Shuffle!

So, this is Herb. Our amazing friend who also happens to be our vet. Again, a doctor who selflessly saves the lives of countless animals. Combine that with those sexy dance moves, and what woman wouldn't fall all over herself for that bouquet? * side note - notice Mal in the background getting SO EXCITED for what is about to happen on the dance floor*

Family photo! From the left - Zach, Me, Josh and Brandon. I actually have a collection going of pictures of the four of us over the years. It starts when Zach and I are about three and runs through the wedding. I am planning a massive unveiling of my masterpiece at some point soon. GET. THE. KLEENEX. 

The Hora! That magical moment in a Jewish bride's life when she is simultaneously filled with joy at the thought of just being married, and also with fear at the thought of either breaking her neck or her skirt flying over her head.

Brian leans in and whispers to me, "Pumpkin, we are surrounded by our friends and family, and I love you." WHY IS EVERYONE TRYING TO MAKE ME CRY??

Such handsomeness!!

Me and my Mens. Also, surprise! The bottom of my dress comes off. Josh, thanks for keeping THAT fashion secret for a whole year. I know it must have eaten away at you.

Us and our Besties. :) That look on my face is the result of hours upon hours of smiling. And smiling. And smiling. And some more smiling.

Aunt Beth (Hi, Aunt Beth!), Me, Grandma, and Aunt Deb.

Last, but most certainly not least, me and Herb sharing some gossip. Because what ELSE would I be doing on my wedding day??
So, that is all for today, y'all. I hope you enjoyed the photos and commentary. I know I sure did.
I plan to be back this Friday with the advent of Foodie Fridays! I am planning some awesome gluten-free recipes that everyone will enjoy.
Until then, love and all that good stuff,

Friday, March 1, 2013

Playing Catch-Up

Hey Bloggies!!

First, let me apologize for being absent since basically before Christmas. It has just been such a crazy few months with the nuptials, the holidays, and day-to-day life thrown in the mix(yeah, it's pretty crazy how life doesn't stop just because you have marshmallows to roast and gifts to wrap...but I'm working on it!). But here I am! I am making a more concerted effort in the New Year to post more often, as well as tweet, facebook, etc. I also have had complaints about people not being able to leave comments, so if that's you, send me an email at and I will give you my info for facebook or twitter to use until I get this craziness sorted out! Part of that is a plan to re-vamp the blog.

In the meantime, I have missed blogging terribly. There are so many things that happen that I want to share, and sometimes it feels impossible to write them all down fast enough!

Also, I know I promised more wedding photos! While I do not have the time today to devote to making it a truly wonderful post full of commentary and hilarity, I am working on it, and will have it up as soon as possible.

In the meantime, something interesting to tell you about is my recent diet change. I have gone gluten-free!! I'm not sure if I have mentioned this, but for about a year now I have had a horrible problem with my stomach. I have pretty much been in horrible pain and experiencing unrelenting nausea day and night, and after trying everything(including surgery) my doctor told me to go off gluten to see if it helps. I must say, I was crushed. I mean, my whole life is based on food. I write about it for a living, and for fun. I blog about it, I cook every day, I have a relationship with food that rivals that of some religions. A huge part of that is bread, pasta, baked goods, and everything gluten-y. And that is ok with me. But, what I have discovered is that I can still do those things without gluten. In fact, dare I say it?? I think going gluten-free has helped me to be a better cook. I'm more creative in making food that I will love to eat and love to cook. I also have to account for the fact that Brian is NOT gluten-free, and although I may occasionally want to lunge across the dining room table to chew a piece of rigatoni out of his hand, sadly, I cannot.

So, though this is not an excuse, I think part of why I have not blogged is because I wasn't quite comfortable in my footing with my new cuisine, and though this is not technically a food blog, a lot of what is in here is based on food.

 So many changes have taken place in the past few months (not just in food, but in life), and as so often happens when we find ourselves in a new situation we aren't sure of, I needed to crawl under my proverbial blanket and hide out for a while.

But I did not forget about any of you, and I have taken lots of pictures of my food and fun over the past few weeks to share with everyone. They include a trip to Savannah with my best friends, and some new dishes I came up with so I could stop staring at my husband's food like a starved refugee. Now, I just have to figure out how to upload my pics from my iPhone to my laptop, and we are in business!!

I promise to be back next week with stories and pictures and all the real-life things that make you all laugh...with me, not AT me...right, right??!!

With love,

Saturday, December 22, 2012

The Day We Have All Been Waiting For. AKA The Day I Have Been Waiting For. AKA Wedding Pictures.

OMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMG!!!! They are HERE!!!!! They are here to share with YOU!!!! Hanukkah is the season of miracles, and even though it is technically over, I still consider this to be a miracle of the season. The wedding pictures are here. I am so excited. Our wedding photographer came over yesterday to drop off the disc and I practically lept into his arms with joy at the site of them.
I know I have been going on about them for FOREVER, so I hope they live up to your expectations.
Let me start at the beginning of this tale. I was a nervous wreck in the days leading up to my wedding. Planning it long distance(wedding was in Savannah, we live in St. Augustine) made me a pretty nervous bride since I just had to trust, for the most part, that I would show up and everything would be right. And right it was. It was beyond perfect.
So, I will now share with you the story of our wedding day, through pictures. 
My hair! I loved my hair. I did not have a trial, but the girl who worked my weave did a fantastic job, and was awesome to boot!! The moment my hair was complete was when I felt that my wedding was really happening. I looked in the mirror, got so excited that I excused myself like a lady to go vomit a little in the bathroom, wiped my mouth and came out and put my makeup on. I was ready!

Not sure what was happening here. But it's a picture of me, so here it is. 
 Me during my 15 minutes of being a model. This was taken before the ceremony. I refused to let Brian see me before I walked down the aisle. I wanted a true reaction from him w hen he first saw me in all of my bridal glory.
Me being thoughtful and looking out the window. I was thinking, thoughtfully, "Did I put on deodorant?!"

Turns out, I had not put on deodorant, but Brittany saved the day because she had some in her bag. Then my Mommy came downstairs to where I was waiting with my bridesmaids, and gave me a kiss, and told me I looked like an angel. I then cried, and then told my Mommy to stop making me cry, and then apologized profusely to my Mom for telling her what to do. I  may have been a ball of emotions.

Then my photographer, Perry, told me to look out the window. So I did. 
Model shot! So glamorous. I then shoved a biscuit in my mouth.

Then I got to sit down, but only on half of my behind, in a chair and let Perry shoot from above. He got about five pictures in when I told him I was about to fall off the chair and I was done. That was my one diva moment. 

"AHAHAHAA! You think it's so funny that I am about to fall off this chair."

When I was standing by the window taking pictures, I looked down and saw some of our friends gathered on River Street!! I pounded, I mean tapped lightly like a lady, on the window and then Perry took a picture!! Aren't they all so spiffy?

I know this looks like I am laughing with joy. I was really shouting for some damn water because I was sweating my ass off.

Me and Baby Alice, Brian's Goddaughter and my flower girl.

She is such a little angel and helped me with my dress and stayed by my side the whole morning.

Me and the bridesmaids right before we all walked down the aisle. They chose this moment to tell me they had stayed out until 3:30am the night before. I got married at 11am. You do the math. They all pulled it together though and looked absolutely gorgeous. I am so lucky to have them for my best friends.

My Mommy and Nan sitting and waiting for the ceremony to begin. I told my Mom that she was the most beautiful I had ever seen her. And that's pretty darn beautiful.

Brian!!! Waiting for his beloved.

Me and Pops! He was waiting for me at the top of the stairs to walk me down the aisle. Oh lord, did the tears come on then. This is me telling him I love him, and also not to let go of my hand because I did not have my glasses on and could not see anything.

I'll spare you the million pics of the back of our heads. This is after we said our "I do's" and right before Josh pronounced us husband and wife. Our ceremony lasted 13 minutes. Seriously, our vet Herb timed it.

After we walked back down the aisle. That look you see on my face is one of, "Thank God I don't feel like I am going to vomit anymore." I think I get my nervous stomach from my Aunt Beth. I cannot handle high stress situations without throwing up. So, I was very pleased indeed when that subsided.

Me and my cousin, Josh. He was so wonderful to agree to marry us even though he had never officiated a wedding before. He did such a great job, and it meant so much that it was him who did it.

Picture time! My face hurt from all the smiling, but it was a good hurt.

The boys :)

Hmmmm...not really sure what this is all about. Did Brian lose his balance?

Me and the beautiful ladies. Seriously, could they be any more gorgeous?

Oh, don't mind us, we're just in the middle of a photo shoot.

All of us in front of the Cotton Exchange. We were supposed to go to Forsyth Park to take pictures in front of the huge fountain, but you know what? I think this was one of those things that didn't go as planned, but turned out amazing. 

He is such the ladies man!

You like that natural pose? I was feeling very J Crew ad in this shot. 

Brian wanted to dip me. I threatened his life if he dropped me or in any way messed up my hair, makeup or dress. So, that might be the cause of the look of fear on his face.

This was my fairytale moment.

After the outside pictures were done, Brian and I went back to the little room downstairs where we got married to wait to be announced for our first dance. Perry followed us and got some great shots. Brian was happy because we got a few moments alone. I was happy because the plate of bacon and biscuits the girls had earlier was still there.

This is one of my absolute favorite moments. I was so, so happy. Mostly because I just married the love of my life. And also a little because after this picture was taken, Perry left us to go back upstairs, and then Brian gave me bacon to eat.
So, that is the first part of the wedding!!! Next week I will post the reception pictures, because there are just too many to put them all in this post.
I hope you enjoyed them as much as I did!
Happy Holidays,