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National Breast Cancer Awareness Month: Installment 1

Understanding the 2nd Most Fatal Cancer of Women

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For the first part in my series on Breast Cancer, I thought it was important to first share what exactly breast cancer is.  But first here are some statistics, that I found staggering:

  • It is estimated that this year alone 192,370 women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer.
  • The median age for those diagnosed with breast cancer is 61 years old.  That means that of all new diagnoses half of those women are under 61.
  • 2.5 women in the U.S. have a history of breast cancer.
  • 1 in 8 women can expect to develop breast cancer at some point over their lifetime.

The good news is that the death rate from breast cancer continues to drop about 2% a year. 

[sources: http://professional.cancerconsultants.com & http://www.breastcancer.org

Breast Cancer Basics

Here is a definition for cancer from breastcancer.org

Cancer occurs as a result of mutations, or abnormal changes, in the genes responsible for regulating the growth of cells and keeping them healthy. The genes are in each cell’s nucleus, which acts as the “control room” of each cell. Normally, the cells in our bodies replace themselves through an orderly process of cell growth: healthy new cells take over as old ones die out. But over time, mutations can “turn on” certain genes and “turn off” others in a cell. That changed cell gains the ability to keep dividing without control or order, producing more cells just like it and forming a tumor.

There are two different types of tumors, benign and malignant.  Benign not a health threat, while malignant has the potential to be dangerous.

Breast cancer is a malignant tumor found in the breast.  It usually begins in the milk producing glands called the lobules, or the passages draining milk from the lobules to the nipple.  The least common form of breast cancer forms in the connective tissue in the breast.

Here is a diagram from the American Cancer Society Webpage:

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[sources: http://www.breastcancer.org & http://www.cancer.org]

Types of Breast Cancer

There are different types of breast cancer that a woman can be diagnosed with, listed below are the most common:

  • “Ductal carcinoma in situ" is the most common non-invasive breast cancer, it  means that the cancer has begun in the ducts but not have not spread through the walls of the ducts to other tissue in the breast.
  • “Invasive (or infiltrating) ductal carcinoma” is the most common form of breast cancer.  It starts in the duct, comes through the duct, and grows in the fatty connective tissue, at this point it can spread to other parts of the body.
  • Similiar to that is “Invasive (or infiltrating) lobular carcinoma”, which begins in the lobules and can spread to other parts of the body.
[source: http://www.cancer.org]

I hope that I was able to help you understand breast cancer a little better, I look forward to bringing you more information. 

Next time I plan to discuss the risk factors and things you can do to help prevent breast cancer.

If anyone has any information they’d like to share please do so either in the comments or by emailing me.

October 3, 2009 at 9:29 am 4 comments

Back To Basics

For me that means back to blogging.  These past weeks have been insanely busy for me, and this blog was one of the things to fall by the wayside.  I was eating really repetitively and didn’t fell it was necessary nor interesting to post my peanut butter lunch everyday.   The busier I got the more boring meals got, and the less likely I was to blog about it.  But I’ve really missed sharing things with you guys, and I’ve really missed taking the time out of my day to recap what I ate.  I realized this blog wasn’t just about food, but it’s helped me to keep track of so many important things that have happened this year. 

This afternoon at work I was thinking about my blog and getting back to it.  I decided that although I have taken no pictures of food for the past few weeks, I have a lot to share, and although I’ll start with my regular food blogging tomorrow I wanted to update you all on what I’ve been busy doing.

Shortly after the camping trip in my last post, Andrew and I took a trip out to Ohio to visit my first childhood friend, Tiffany.  We lived right across the street from eachother for about 8 years, and so many of my early memories involve her and her family.  Last summer I was honored to be a part of her wedding, and this past July she gave birth to her first child, a beautiful baby boy named Logan.  I posted about him here.  We both took a long weekend and traveled out to Ohio to see him. 

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But it was definitely worth the 8 hour each way drive to hold him, and kiss those chubby cheeks.

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Andrew definitely got in on the baby loving action too.

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It took a lot for me to leave Ohio come that Monday morning.  Tiffany’s family is so much fun, she’s one of 5 kids, and they are all hilarious to be around.  Her family was very welcoming, and it felt like we don’t live hundreds of miles apart when I’m there but right across the street still.

Just a week after that was my cousin Nicci’s bachelorette party.  She decided she wanted to just hit up a local bar and that everyone, even the boys, were included.  I think it’s pretty obvious that there were lots of drinks consumed, and even more pictures taken.

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Nicci and I, what a beautiful bride!

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Group shots of Little Guinness. My favorite shot by far.

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Did I mention we were pretty much the only people at the bar?  It was like we rented it out just for her party.

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Cute couple!

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Of course 2 weeks flew by after that night and it was time for the wedding weekend!  It was absolutely beautiful and overall the day was pretty much perfect.  But we did have to spend some time partying after the rehearsal Friday night.

Once again there was lots of drinking, this time no shots, just lots of wine and champagne, we were celebrating afterall.

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How adorable is my cousin?

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Dance music from a clock radio and lots of delicious Italian food.

After all the wine and champagne were gone from the room we went on an adventure to find a bar.  Unfortunately the only proof I have this are horrible blurry pictures of our midnight walk.

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For some reason all bars were closed and we were left to go back to the presidential suite and just continue the fun without anymore drinks.

The next morning we were up at 9 and started getting ready almost instantly.  It was a fun but emotional day and we were all excited for the ceremony to start.  Without videos to post it’s hard for me to explain what a fun and perfect ceremony it was.  I also have pretty crappy pictures from the ceremony too.

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Mother of the Bride and Brother of the Bride.

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That’s me walking down the aisle.

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The Beautiful Bride!

After a great ceremony came a fun reception. 

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Peacock Ice Sculpture.

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The Newlyweds!

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That my Mom and me, isn’t she beautiful?

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That’s my handsome Dad!

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Soultrain!

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My handsome date and I.

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Amazing centerpieces!

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My favorite picture of the evening.  My grandma, grandpa and myself.  I blew this up and plan on framing it.

All-in-all the wedding was a great success.

Just one week later, this past Saturday, there was some more wedding related fun, this time a Bridal Shower for my friend Laura.  I was taking pictures with her camera most of the party, so I only have a few to share.

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The toilet paper wedding dress game!  Always hilarious!

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And that’s pretty much all I got!  I thought I got more then that!

Well anyway that’s what’s been going on for me.  I look forward to getting back to regular blogging, and can’t wait to start food blogging once again tomorrow night, I know this was a really picture heavy post, so thanks if you made it all the way through!

September 28, 2009 at 8:02 pm 6 comments

What I’ve Been Up To

Oh my gosh I need to get back to regular blogging.  It’s been so difficult and I haven’t really been home much.  We have so much going on!

I really don’t think there has been a night in the past 2 weeks where I’ve been getting home before 10 o’clock and by that time I’m just so tired I want to crawl into bed with the A/C blasting, one day I came home and it was 96 degrees in the house!

One of the things we had to do last week was some wedding related things. We completely changed the location of the ceremony for the wedding, we met with the priest at Andrew’s church and decided to have it there.   It’s a beautiful church, and after speaking with the priest we realized that we would rather have it there, then at the chapel I originally posted here.  If we have it at the chapel we’d have to have special permission to get a priest to do it there since it’s a non-denominational chapel.  Thank goodness we have so much time so we do get to change our minds.  Here’s one of the only pictures I could find on the website.

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We spent last weekend at my parents house while they were away visiting my grandparents in the Poconos, that way Bailey could stay with us and my parents wouldn’t have to bring her out there.  We got a lot of stuff accomplished that I’ve been putting off.  One of things was I had to find shoes to go with my dress for my cousins wedding.  And although they don’t look it they are actually quite comfy.shoes

There’s also been time with friends, and family, and of course lots of quality time with Andrew.

Now in just a couple hours we’ll be heading out to go camping!  We had such a great weekend last time so, We all organized another trip and included my friends Laura and Billy this time.  I’m looking forward to it so much!

 Jessica, Michelle, and I went food shopping last night for the trip and we have some fun meals planned, that I will definitely be recapping on Sunday evening when we return.  We’ll be using our new tent, and my mom decided to spoil us and bought us a ceiling fan for it! 

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I’m getting ready to leave work but just wanted to stop in and say hello! Also I’m on WordPress and I’m having lots of trouble with it.  Maybe I’ll be loading Live Writer onto this computer sometime soon. I use it at home and absolutely love it,  I forgot how hard it is to upload pictures without Live Writer.  Hope you all have a great weekend, and can’t wait to tell you all about the camping trip when I return.   Keep your fingers crossed that the weather’s wrong, because this is what is says for tonight and tomorrow as of right now.

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Either way it should be fun!

August 21, 2009 at 12:44 pm 3 comments

Guess Who’s Back…

So this long hiatus was completely unintentional.  Our internet was down since the last time I posted until today!  I kind of gave up on taking pictures of my food after a few days of being cut off from the cyber world.  It came back so unexpectedly I didn’t take any pictures today, I wish I had checked it before leaving for work, it might have been up then and then I would have been able to write a normal post!  I have to say although I was eating as normal, it was kind of nice, because I hate a lot of repeat meals and didn’t have to worry about the blog getting boring!  I was able to have the same dinner 2 nights in a row without worrying about the blog.  But that gets boring after a while, I hope being able to post will light a fire under my butt to get back to making some fun things.  I have a few recipes I can’t wait to try and now that I can post, I’m excited to try some new things!

Before I post some pictures that I’ve been waiting to share you guys, thanks for all the compliments on the engagement party photos.  You guys really know how to make a girl feel good about herself!

So the night before our engagement party we went with a few friends to the county fair!  It was the first time I’ve gone to it that I can remember, although my parents told me I went when I was younger.  It was so much fun!  The best part was we got to watch 2 exciting events.

The first was a Lumberjack competition.  The pictures I got of this aren’t that great because we were kind of far away.

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They had 2 lumberjacks competeting with a few different challenges.  They did some with chainsaws, axes, climbing those big poles you see, and log rolling.  Very fun to watch.

Here’s a funny, yet embarrassing, lumberjack related story that Andrew just loves to tell.  Once while we were having a bonfire at Andrew’s parent’s house Andrew decided to stand on some of the unused firewood, he looked like when you see lumberjacks on tv doing the log rolling.  He was doing a pretty good job at walking on the wood and making it rotate under his feet.  I wanted to say “You’d make a great lumberjack”, but couldn’t think of the word lumberjack at all.  You know how frustrating that is, I’m sure.  Well I wound up saying, “You’d make a great, uh, um…log farmer.”  Him and our friends busted out laughing, “LOG FARMER!!!” they all screached at me.  And I haven’t lived it down yet.  I don’t ever forget the word Lumberjack anymore, or Astronaut for that matter.  I once had the same forgetfulness with that word, and called them space cowboys! Yikes I say some stupid stuff sometimes.

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This ones really hard to see but one of the lumberjacks was climbing to the top of the poles, they move so quickly!

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In between this show and the next event we decided to have some ice cream.  I got a cookies and cream cone.  I can honestly say I haven’t had an ice cream since I was about 8, so it was a very different treat for me.

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Thanks Andrew for catching this one, the pictures I took were awful!

Then it was time for the main event, the one that was the reason we sat on those bleachers for so long just to hold our front row seats, Pig Racing!

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Unfortunately after sitting in our seats for almost an hour, an entire group of kids decided to stand right in front of us, this was really our view for most of the races.

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So disappointing!

After much encouragement from ourselves, and people behind us these kids sat down on the ground.  I’m so going to be the old lady yelling at kids to get out of my yard.

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So cute!

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These pigs were swimming!

Apparently these pigs are racing for an oreo!  They all get oreos at the end of the race, that’s there encouragement and what they are running for.

I wish I had more pictures to share of the pig racing, it was really fun to watch. 

There were lots of animal exhibits.  But somehow the only picture I got was an albino snake.

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As much as I hate snakes, I had to admit seeing this was so cool.  The white was so bright and it was actually kind of beautiful in a snakey way.

So there you have it I watched my first lumberjack competition and pig race.  What an exciting night!

Keep your fingers crossed that our internet continues to be up and running tomorrow. 

August 5, 2009 at 8:34 pm 9 comments

As Promised…

I’m so sad this weekend is over!  I can’t begin to tell you how much fun the party was yesterday, and how lucky and loved I am by family and friends.  Picture 052

Andrew and I with our good friends Billy and Laura.  We are the executive board members of The Wine & Couch Club.  That means we drink wine and sit on couches, and we also take weekend retreats (read: vacations) together every year.  Laura and Billy are getting married this coming March!  I asked Laura to be one of my bridesmaids yesterday, and I’m so happy she said yes!

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I bought a million balloons in our colors for the wedding.  We’re doing mostly teal and white with little a few red accents.

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This is Jessica and her boyfriend Rob.  I also asked Jessica to be one of my bridesmaid’s and she also said yes.  Jessica was the photographer for the day, thanks Jess!!  (You may remember them from the camping trip a few weeks ago!)

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This isn’t the best picture, but my parents gave us champagne flutes to use for our toast on our wedding day.  They look exactly like the ones that they used, there’s a little dove at the stem.  I absolutely love them!!

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We got so many great cards from everyone, clearly this is my “aw” face, I might have teared up a few times.

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Our cake, I didn’t eat any (since I don’t like cake,) but I definitely took a few licks of the frosting.

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We had a mini photo shoot in front of the cake, I felt like I was on a red carpet with all the cameras flashing.

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Laura told us this is the pose you have to do in front of your engagement cake.  Not sure I believe her, but we did it.

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Bailey has a new best friend!

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Andrew ruins pictures.

I couldn’t have asked for a better day!  I can’t believe how fast it all went!    Well I’m off to bed, I’m exhausted from all the fun!  I’ll be back to regular food blogging tomorrow!

July 26, 2009 at 9:12 pm 17 comments

Busy Busy!

I can’t believe I’ve neglected the blog for so long!   I haven’t had a day where after work I could just come home and relax in over 2 weeks.

I love the summertime and I’ve been making the most of it.  I went to see 2 movies (Bruno and Harry Potter) with friends. Andrew and I went to a Bridal show with my friend whose getting married in March.  We had some major shopping to do when my friend, that I’ve known since I was 2, had a baby boy!  Unfortunately she lives in Ohio, so I won’t be able to see her for a while, but I’ve stared at his picture for hours on end.

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Doesn’t he look perfect? 

We also have our engagement party tomorrow night.  So we’ve had to do a lot of shopping, finding a caterer, and other miscellaneous tasks to get everything ready.  In fact I’m going to my mom’s house (where we’re having the party) to cook some things, and to help clean up.  We have family coming tonight, so I better get going but I just wanted to check in.  I’m not sure I’ll have time to post tomorrow, but I’ll definitely be posting tons of pictures from the party on Sunday!

I haven’t been commenting, but I’ve been reading! 

Keep your fingers crossed that tomorrow goes smoothly, and that everyone gets along!

July 24, 2009 at 8:26 am 11 comments

Life Got In The Way

 

I can’t believe I disappeared for so long.  Usually this is where I would apologize and give excuses as to why I wasn’t blogging.  But I have no excuse, Andrew and I both had last week off, and it’s the only time we’ll have extended time together for the rest of the summer, so we made the most of it.  This is a monster post!
We went camping, went to a graduation party, went to the beach, hung out with friends, watched the fireworks, ate burgers, went out for brunches, watched fireworks, shopped, booked a wedding venue and put a deposit down, sleeping late,  and spent lots of time with our families.  I wouldn’t change a thing about last week, (except of course make it longer).  I missed blogging though and I’m excited to get back to a normal schedule, but it was kind of liberating eating without taking pictures, at first it felt weird but by the end I enjoyed it, but I’ve seen so many creative things out there in blogland while catching up yesterday that I can’t wait to try.  (Hello Banana Soft Serve!)
Camping was so much fun!  I still can’t believe how much I loved it.  I knew with the people I would be with it was going to be a good time, the actual camping part worried me.  I’m kind of a girl who likes electricity, showering, and knowing what time it is.  By the middle of Saturday I was just enjoying the time and relaxing with my closest friends.  We went with 2 of my best friends Michelle, and Jessica.  I know I’m extremely lucky to have those girls in my life.  I’ve known Michelle since we were about 3 (although we didn’t become super close until Middle School).  And Jessica was always close with Michelle so she was always a friend, but it was only a couple years ago where we grew as close as we are now.  Their  boyfriends are both really great people as well, so we had a great group with the 6 of us.  There was lots of hanging out around the campfire talking, lots of walking down to the river, and perhaps the other 2 girls are more adventurous then I am and tried to float on inner tubes down the Delaware river.

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I was so happy to be on our way!

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Yayyy!

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Michelle and I cooking up so camp food!

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Andrew and Jessica’s boyfriend Rob and me being creepy in the background.

Since it was Andrew’s birthday I brought cupcakes, unfortunately they melted in the car on the way there.  They looked gross but no one complained about the taste, and I even ate a 1/4 of one.

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Me and the Birthday Boy!

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Me and the ladies standing by the fire.

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And another one.

Here’s Michelle and Jessica getting ready to float down the Delaware.

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Meanwhile I was fishing with some friends I made.  Or tried to make, they apparently didn’t like my idea of me taking pictures with their fish so I could pretend that I caught it.  It’s not like we know the same people, geez kids!

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That blue tent on the right was where Andrew and I slept, the orange one is Michelle and her boyfriend Scout’s tent.

We’re planning on going camping again really soon so Andrew and I went out to buy our own tent, so we wouldn’t have to borrow one again.  After we bought it we set it up in my parents backyard just to see how big it was and make sure everything was right so we didn’t get out in the woods and realize we were missing an important pole or something.  I can’t wait to use this tent!

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Hopefully sometime in August we’ll be back out in the woods somewhere.   If your someone who thinks they’d hate camping give it a try, I guarantee the time away from computers, cell phones,  and civilization in general will leave you feeling refreshed and ready for anything once you return.
I didn’t take any pictures of things I ate while camping, except one.
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But that’s an obvious choice, right?

I somehow didn’t take any pictures while at the beach on Monday but we were there and it was an absolutely beautiful day.  Sun, sand, and the sounds of the ocean! Although the Jersey Shore doesn’t have the most beautiful beaches in the world, they are really nice, and after living within 10 minutes of the beach my entire life (and being able to see the bay from my apartment) it has spoiled me and whenever Andrew and I talk about moving out of NJ because it’s so outta control expensive, my only requirement is we have to move to a town on the coast, don’t care where, but it’s got to be within 20 minutes of a beach.   I did do a google image search for where we went though.

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That’s where we parked.

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And that’s pretty much exactly where we set up our towels and soaked up the sun.

And probably the most exciting thing that happened!  A few weeks ago we found a location for our wedding that we absolutely fell in love with, it’s not the beach wedding I always dreamed of (just more proof I’m obsessed with the beach!), the only places on the beach we saw were crazy expensive,  kind of run down, couldn’t hold the amount we needed, or wanted us to guarantee many more people then we were comfortable paying for.  The second I walked into this last place I fell in love, it’s a yacht club and right on the river, the views from the ballroom are beautiful, the centerpieces they would provide are perfect, and I just saw us having a fantastic time there.  So before we left 2 Friday’s ago for camping we took a trip down with both of our mom’s who also loved the location.  We put our date on hold, and then this past Friday we put our deposit down and signed the contract.  Now that it’s official, I’m happy to share some pictures of our location!
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The gazebo and river.

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The ballroom.

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The patio for use during cocktail hour.untitled4

The center pieces we will most likely use.

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A pretty cake, and another view of the river.
Our date is still over 2 years away but we wanted to lock in for the date we wanted, and also guarantee the low prices, since most places do go up each year.  We picked a date that apparently is going to be pretty popular.  We didn’t think it would be because it’s so far out, but apparently at least 2 other couples have the same idea as us because our venue is completely booked for the day now as well, all 3 time slots and ball rooms are taken.

We also picked a place for our ceremony.  About 10 miles from the venue there is an historic park with a chapel.  It’s a great place for pictures and the chapel is so charming.

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Not the best pictures but I pulled them off the website.

So now I’m done with any and all planning for this year, I have my cousin’s wedding in September and my friend Laura’s in March so I’m going to focus on being great bridesmaids to both of them, plus I really do have plenty of time.  The date we picked is September 10, 2011.  Or 9-10-11 which is why it’s going to be popular.

 

If you stuck through to the end, thank you, this was a very long post and very picture heavy, I’ll be back to regular blogging tomorrow!  Enjoy the rest of your evening!  I’ll leave you with some more pictures of the fireworks we saw from our deck last Thursday.

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July 7, 2009 at 7:47 pm 21 comments

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