Rob and Mandy's Wedding Extravaganza………….. May 26, 2012

Blogging my way to our wedding day.

121 Days to Go – Cranes, Cranes, Cranes! January 26, 2012

I am still hard at work on my 1,000 origami cranes project! Right now I have right around 700 🙂 Rob has helped, as well as my friend Kate from work. I’ve been using mainly scrapbook paper from Hobby Lobby, Michael’s and JoAnn Fabrics. However, I did decide to order some actual origami paper through a seller on Etsy. It took a couple of weeks, but my origami paper has arrived from Hong Kong! Check it out 😀

I wish I could read Chinese, I love how the characters look 🙂

6 different patterns of beautiful origami paper

All of the papers have wonderful gold accents for a bit of sparkle

Cranes made from each paper design, so cute!!

Time to get back to work! 🙂


129 Days to Go – Menu Decisions! January 18, 2012

Well today was our wedding menu tasting and I was so looking forward to it! Not only to taste what was sure to be amazing food, but also just to get a chance to go back to the gardens. It’s so beautiful there! I was also looking forward to getting a glimpse of the gardens covered in snow since we might never really get another chance. The gardens are closed to the public from October to April so most people will never get the chance to see them snowy. We couldn’t walk the paths or anything, but we could see quite a bit from the giant windows in the reception area.

Our tasting was scheduled for 11am. We got there about a half hour early which kind of worked out because we had a little time to look out the windows and take photos before they brought the food out.


After enjoying the beautiful scenery for a bit, it was time to taste the food we had chosen. We were allowed to taste 3 entrees plus 1 vegetarian meal. Here is what we tried 🙂

Our tasting menu

Grilled Salmon

Five Spice Chicken

Grilled Pork Chop

Grilled Vegetable Rigatoni

Everything we tried was SO delicious! It was kinda hard to narrow down our choices. We already knew we wanted the Prime Rib, but we didn’t get to taste it because they can’t really make just one serving. We were also pretty sure that we wanted the Grilled Vegetable Rigatoni as our vegetarian choice, but tasting it certainly solidified the decision. As amazing as everything was, it might have been my favorite thing (but I am a huge fan of cheese)! So between the 3 other things we tasted we had to pick only 1. I initially wanted the Grilled Pork Chop, but tasting the other items made it much more difficult. In the end we chose the Grilled Salmon. We all really liked everything on the plate. The black bean-sweet potato hash was a surprisingly tasty side dish!

So hopefully everyone enjoys the menu that we have chosen. If you don’t like steak or salmon, the pasta dish really is a surprisingly delicious alternative! There will also be a chicken tenders or macaroni and cheese option for the kiddies, and appetizers will be served during the cocktail hour (we still have to decide on those). We will also be hosting an open bar for an hour before dinner and an hour after (during dinner and later in the evening drinks can still be purchased). So get excited people, this thing is really coming together!!


302 Days to Go – Another Major Decision Made! July 29, 2011

Filed under: Wedding — mandyshaner @ 10:40 pm
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For those of you that wander over to this blog from my Facebook, you’ve probably already seen me spamming photos of the Anderson Japanese gardens and now the fact that we’ve chosen to have our wedding there! We had originally intended to visit as many places as needed in order to find the perfect spot, but it turns out we just needed to visit one.

I think we both started falling in love with the place as soon as we walked into the door. Right away we were greeted with the amazing reception area (and after the long drive I even got to see how lovely the restrooms are hehe).  After that, every step we took while heading deeper into the gardens we fell more and more in love. Julie, the wedding/event coordinator, was very knowledgeable and easy to talk to. After our tour of the gardens she walked us through a big folder of information she had prepared, including a very helpful FAQ packet she had written herself based on questions from previous couples. Thinking about all the numbers and prices was a bit overwhelming, as well as slightly discouraging. Sticker shock has been a pretty prominent theme for us so far hehe. Another discouraging issue was the fact that another couple was also looking at having their wedding on the same day, but they hadn’t put down a deposit yet. That meant that if we decided we wanted to reserve that date we were going to have to act fast.  After we sat around and chatted for a bit, Julie gave us permission to walk around the gardens at our leisure for free. Pretty smart move on their part if you ask me, since the whole time we were discussing debt vs. dream wedding we were surrounded by the garden’s beauty.

We couldn’t stop talking about the gardens during our entire drive to the second venue of the day. We were even deciding what items we would order from the menu if that was the route we eventually decided to take. Then the fact that we were completely underwhelmed by the banquet center really started to make us wonder if anything else would ever measure up to our dream venue. We continued our discussion the whole way home as we crunched the numbers and tried to figure out what we needed to do to make our dream a reality.

Once home we immediately told Rob’s mom all about our wonderful day, also including the downside of course… the cost. We had talked briefly about wedding expenses with her once before and had already considered the possibility of taking out a loan from his parents (that we would pay back, at least in part, with money we will ‘hopefully’ receive as gifts at the wedding) as their gift to us. She brought that up again, and said that we had to make sure it was ok with Rob’s dad first. While Rob went to speak with his dad, I uploaded all of my photos to Facebook so that I could show everyone what we had been raving about.  Rob’s dad graciously agreed to loan us the money, and we all oohed and ahhed over the photos together. I’m so grateful and a bit overwhelmed that they are willing to help us out so much with this. Our dream wedding wouldn’t be possible otherwise. I don’t like asking for help, especially when money is involved, so I really had to swallow my pride on this one. I’ll feel a lot better when we start paying it off…

In the mean time…Rob and I headed back downstairs and he immediately fired off an email to Julie. He let her know that we were interested and also asked a few questions we hadn’t thought of while we were there. We decided to keep things on the down-low until we knew for sure whether we got the date, otherwise we would have had to move ours. I was so nervous all of yesterday because Julie was out of the office at an event and we couldn’t get ahold of her! Thankfully, sometime around 2pm today I got a call from my husband-to-be saying that everything was a go.  She emailed us the contract, which I just signed and initialed, and we’ll be sending that plus the deposit her way in the morning. There aren’t enough words in the thesaurus to describe how happy I am right now :). The fact that we didn’t have to stress out while visiting countless venues, we have a way to pay for it, we are having the wedding of our dreams and I’m marrying the man of mine…how could I not be completely beside myself with joy 🙂

….Is it May yet?


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