Where is My Mind …

September 28, 2010 § 2 Comments

Even though it’s only been about three days since my last post, I feel like I haven’t updated in a long, long time.  Time has been moving very slowly, and it makes me wonder if this is how a fly experiences it’s short lifetime: perceiving each day as much longer than its 24 hours.  I try very hard not to feel anything that can be even remotely identified as self pity.  And if I do feel it, I certainly strive to keep it contained and not express it publicly.  But this is the longest period Cesar and I have spent apart since we met almost exactly two years ago, and — whatever — I’m sad and sappy having not eaten a meal together or seen his face in more than two dimensions for two weeks, with another week and a half to go!  I’m also completely exhausted, as I’ve tried to speed time up by taking on extra work in my free time.  But I have to admit, despite my inability to sit still on the weekends without him or get restful sleep alone in our apartment, I’m experiencing the time apart much differently than I would have experienced time alone in the past.

First, I have to address how strange it is to acknowledge that I have only known Cesar for two years.  We have built a life together so quickly and instinctively that it’s odd to consider our individual existences before that day in September 2008 when he first set foot in our previous apartment.  In reverse chronological order predating our … dating … and subsequent engagement, I went through a brief “dating” phase, which made my skin crawl both at the time and now in retrospect.  I guess at the time I thought it was obligatory to bite on at least a couple poorly cast lines at some point in my life.  I definitely could have gotten along fine if I had just continued swimming.  But live and learn and no regrets, right?  I would say all it did was delay the inevitable with Cesar except that I think, by definition, inevitable things defy timelines.

Going back a little more, I had a very trying, lonely, emotionally brutal first year in New York/Jersey City, during which I was trying very hard to cope with separation from my family and home.  I was also desperately attempting to escape some residual effects of a messy break-up.  Thinking now about that relationship — which was the only relationship I’d ever been in up to that point, and which now I can clearly see lasted far too long — is incredibly foreign.  There’s a Death Cab song with lyrics that I have to rely on to describe how it feels to reflect on “now” versus “then”:

You’ll be loved you’ll be loved
Like you never have known
The memories of me
Will seem more like bad dreams
Just a series of blurs
Like I never occurred
Someday you will be loved

Yeah, absolutely.  Some of my worst nightmares today put me back in that relationship.  But I get to wake up and realize with utter relief that my life is in Brooklyn with Cesar.  And I now understand the feeling of having one’s past seem like a different life, wholly separate from that which the individual is experiencing in the present.  Thankfully, those nightmares get fewer and farther between all the time, which further alienates me from who and where I was only four or five years ago.  Again, to my utter relief.

And jeez, before that relationship, I was seventeen and only worrying about homework, play rehearsal, and my AP exams.  A kid!  So weird.

Over the last two years, Cesar and I have talked in great detail about who we were before meeting.  Who we were in past relationships.  Who we were when we were just “dating” people.  Who we were in high school and whether we would have known or liked each other if we’d gone to the same school (in this hypothetical situation, we’d be the same age).  He has seen where I grew up, I’ve seen where he grew up.  The two locations, separated by most of the country, have a lot of similarities and a lot of differences.  And ultimately, we’ve discussed how integral and yet completely irrelevant our past lives are to our new life together.

These discussions have given me a deeper understanding of who Cesar and I are, both as individuals and as parts of a whole.  And that understanding imparts deep trust, as well as the ability to remain at peace while we are apart.  Now, that being said, I cannot wait for him to come home so we can cook some real meals together, eat some ice cream, and sleep deeply for days!!

Happy Birthday Cesar!  I am thankful for your life, my life, our life!


We’ve All Got Our Junk

September 25, 2010 § 1 Comment

Do you know about Junk in Williamsburg?  Since I moved to Brooklyn, it has been one of my favorite places to look for … well, junk.  The main store is below street level at the corner of Driggs and N 9th St.  Everything there looked and felt like it came straight from my grandparents’ basement.  Even the musty smell was familiar.  All that was missing was mirrored wall paper behind a wet bar and red, white, and green striped shag carpet. Junk was also there for Cesar and I when we wanted to fill our apartment with a mish mash of utensils and break up the monopoly Ikea had on our decor.

This week I discovered Junk’s new store, further down Driggs, out of the basement and much larger.  Filled to the brim with cheap items that could so easily become wedding material.

Bloomin’ Boutonnieres

September 23, 2010 § Leave a comment

I created my latest Etsy listing in part because I’d intended to do so all along, but also to round out an order from a bride-to-be who wanted to outfit her entire wedding party with my origami.  So exciting!  While three of my four wedding items are currently unavailable, you shouldn’t let that deter you from requesting your very own origami bouquets.  Do you know about Alchemy?  It’s Etsy’s way of facilitating custom requests.  So if you see something you like, but the title screams “Reserved” in all caps, check out the Alchemy button and submit your request for a bouquet, a boutonniere, or anything else!

Rose shmose. Lilies are way cooler. Especially when they don't die by the end of the night.

Even if there is no wedding in your future, who says you can't dress up your lapel every now and then?

Clean and simple. And not a scrap of floral tape.

The Big Reveal

September 23, 2010 § 2 Comments

As you know, if you’ve been reading closely, I have kept Cesar very much involved in the wedding dress process.  On my solo visits to bridal shops, I pulled out the old iphone and made whoever was near me take a picture that I could send to him later.  And when we could go together, we did!  I never thought twice about getting his input.  He’s got a great eye for style and fit, and our mutual interest in fashion is one of the many elements that brought us together in the first place.  Getting dressed each day and talking about our personal styles plays a huge role in our relationship.  So why wouldn’t I want to know what he thought before I shelled out a ton o’ cash for the dress he’ll get to stare at for an entire day?

I realize, however, that my line of thought is not necessarily the norm.  Some couples follow the traditional line of thought about being seen before the ceremony, and some men want nothing to do with the shopping process.  As a result, we got some mixed reactions from the consultants we visited together.  There was the great disdain from the woman at Saks, the total acceptance from the Lovely ladies, and the utter awkwardness from the all-sales woman at Manhattan’s Priscilla of Boston.  In that last visit to Priscilla, I asked the consultant if it was still very unusual for the fiance to attend the appointment with his bride.  She stated that it is a rising trend, but as I said, still not the norm.

I’m curious to know from fellow brides(and grooms)-to-be, as well as you ladies (and gents) who have already entered into matrimony, where you stand on the issue.


September 19, 2010 § Leave a comment

A quartet of lilies.

Keeping this post short and sweet, there’s a new listing in my Etsy shop!  Minis for your bridesmaids, your guestbook table, or your favorite window!  Four blooms apiece and six inch stems.  You can create a cohesive look, pairing these with the original Book Page Origami Bouquet.  Or mix it up with the Calla Lily bouquet and the minis on the side.  You really can’t go wrong.  As with the bigger bouquets, I can customize these little ladies with whatever your heart desires.

Sweet and simple.

Awesome things to find on Bedford Avenue

September 18, 2010 § Leave a comment

Whether you love or hate Bedford Avenue and the hipster/yupster culture that makes a breeding ground of the straightaway, it is undeniable that there are some fantastic items to be found in it’s boutiques and vintage stores.  One of my favorites is Ugly Luggage.  The inventory changes frequently, so there’s no risk of boredom.  I found a really cool vintage projector there last year for Cesar’s birthday.  The shop owner told me it was a rare style, as the slides progressed with the push of a lever.  He called it the toaster of projectors.  And because I mentioned I was buying it for a photographer and antique camera enthusiast, he threw in as many free slides as I wanted.  All vacation slides dating back to the fifties and sixties.  In short, it’s a great shopping experience over at Ugly Luggage.

If you’re into retro decor for your wedding, it’s also a great place to find the unique props that are so popular these days: vintage typewriters, old cameras, etc.  Here are some things that I found particularly interesting today.

Not super-duper old, but I love the color.

So many to choose from! Luggage is never in short supply of cool cameras.

Use cigar boxes for centerpieces, or leave them stacked on the guestbook table.

Sprinkle the collected items at will, or use the filled jars as decoration.

Find some numbers for your tables or spell something out for your photos.

Hmmm ... what could you do with this? Who cares! It's just cool!

I’m going to end with an amazing find at Catbird, also on Bedford.  I headed over to check out some wedding bands I had seen on Green Wedding Shoes and stumbled upon — Gaaahhh!!!! — origami lily earrings!!!  So very, very cool.

Aahhhhh!!!! I want these!!!!!

Anyhoo … find a day to explore the shops on Bedford.  Wander down some side streets, too, because the charm of Williamsburg is not relegated to one avenue.

Robo Boogie

September 17, 2010 § Leave a comment

The resemblance is uncanny!

I really want this for our cake topper!!!!  Look at the bride’s bouquet!  Tell me it doesn’t resemble my origami lilies.  And the groom’s tux looks similar to Cesar’s homemade tuxedo t-shirt.  And, oh yeah, they’re robots!!  The creator’s Etsy shop is filled with really great retro sci-fi trinkets.  All handmade, wood, magical.   I’m putting this on my Christmas/super-early-birthday wish list.

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