So Saturday was our engagement party, hosted by the MOH, BM, and another dear friend of ours (and her husband, who did a lot of the manual labor!). I wore a tea-length red dress that I bought for a friend's wedding, with my leopard-print stiletto heels (which surprisingly were fine to wear all night; I expected them to be less comfy) and Mr. T wore a dark blue button-down shirt, jeans, and his birthday Adidas. It was a little foreshadowing of our wedding outfits, since I'll be wearing a red dress and he'll have a dark blue suit on.
We didn't have to lift a finger other than bringing an iPod loaded with music and my old Polaroid camera (which I discovered doesn't work, but I'll get to that in a second). Mr. T was a little uncomfortable with having folks do everything for us, but I felt strangely liberated (and I am usually the control freak!). I knew my girls would take care of everything, though. The MOH also asked us to bring some framed pictures of us as decor for the food tables and I realized that I haven't printed a single photo out since we got a digital camera, so that's on my list of things to do before the wedding! All the photos I found of us were from years ago and we both look baby-faced...and thinner. I did find a couple of hilarious Halloween images: one of us as geishas, and one of us as Mulder and Scully. We went to Target that afternoon to get some frames for the photos and scored some for $2 each! We'll have to pick up more before the wedding, since I'd like to display a bunch of photos there as well.
We hit horrible traffic on the way over to the MOH's apartment and ended up being 40 minutes late to our own party. Mr. T called it being "fashionably late" and tried to keep me from getting too cranky about it. Once we got there, I was amazed at what a great job the ladies had done. The MOH was calling the theme "Halloween lite", so there was a skull on the door and a sign that had our names, hyphenated, followed by "Engagement Party;" the sign was in the shape of a spooky old castle.
Once we got inside we were greeted by the hilarious site of white and orange streamers in the hall, and a white tissue paper wedding bell with bats hanging from it. I laughed and laughed. Once we had drinks in hand (there were two signature drinks, named after us, and an elaborate and crazy bar set-up), I relaxed and got to chatting with folks. The Halloween and wedding decor was great, and there was a huge spread of food, although I realized I was so excited to talk to folks that I barely ate anything...no wonder you hear about all the couples who don't eat anything on their wedding day! The E-party team had everything running like a well-oiled machine, and we felt so taken care of and loved.
They had set up a guest book area with Polaroids; luckily my bridesmaid had brought her own Polaroid camera because mine just wouldn't do anything. I have no idea how to fix it; it's been at least 10 years since I last looked at it. I'd wager the battery's dead, but how to replace it? We couldn't figure it out. Anyway, although Polaroid is no longer making new film, they'd managed to find some, although it expired in 2004. It gave all the photos a sepia tone that was kind of neat. Still, I think my vague idea of having a Polaroid guest book at the wedding will have to remain unfulfilled, since the film situation will only get worse from here out. Don't worry, though, I have other ideas!
Anyway, folks got their picture taken and then signed next to their photo. It is a really fun memento from the evening! Mr. T's dad was there, although I think he felt a bit out of place since none of the other parents/older relatives came, which was unfortunate. My friend from high school came, and Mr. T's cousins, and the belly dance crew, and Mr. T's office, and my book club (the bookbabes). I showed off my ring; Mr. T and I had been joking that we needed to have a fancy jeweler's lamp set up so that I could do showings every 15 minutes. Folks seemed to like it, or at least they said they did! ;-)
One of my belly dance troupemates picked up vegan cakes from Millennium; since I'm a lactard she wanted us to have cake I could eat. There was a lemon one with white chocolate frosting and a chocolate one with yummy raspberry filling and chocolate frosting. Apparently she asked the baker to decorate them for Halloween, which first surprised the baker (um, mid-August!), and then amused her. She had to bring some ghost-shaped sprinkles from home and asked my troupemate not to tell anyone she did that, since Millennium doesn't use any artificial ingredients in their food! Mr. T and I did a ceremonial cake-cutting pose, which will probably be the first and last time for that, since we're doing cupcakes for our wedding.
A couple of folks disobeyed our "no gifts" request (defiantly!) and we got a great bottle of champagne, which we'll probably pop open on our 11th anniversary this year, and we also got a nice bottle of tequila and a box of candy. Ah...booze and sugar, the way to my heart.
The MOH sent us home with tons of yummy middle eastern food, the leftover cake, and these hilarious bride and groom rubber duckies that now reside in our bathroom.
The next day we hung out with Mr. T's dad, watched the Olympics, and got some dinner. It was a fantastic weekend, but I'm exhausted today. It felt like a test run for the wedding, only on a smaller scale...very educational! My one regret is that Mr. T and I didn't spend more time together at the party...we have sort of an unofficial "divide and conquer" strategy at parties to get to talk to more people. At our wedding, though, I told him I want to hang out with my husband, and he agreed.
Seeing how smoothly everything went made me reconsider hiring a day-of coordinator (DOC). I have a little idea about that...gotta clear it with Mr. T and we'll see what happens...