Tuesday, March 13, 2012

MIA: Grad School and Wedding Planning

I have been majorly MIA the past week! Last week, I was editing my thesis so it could be sent to my committee, making and having a practice defense presentation, trying to get in laundry/eating/Zoe/getting ready for Charleston...blogging was a lost cause last week :( I basically worked from 6:30/7 am-2-3 am every day. Zach was such a trooper and not only helped me with laundry, cooking, and engineering things, he also stayed up with me and helped or worked on his own stuff and kept me company.

An exhausted me and Zach headed to Charleston Friday about lunch time. We had eight different appointments this weekend: 7 venues and our photographer!

I LOVE Charleston!
We arrived at Caitlin and Dan's house about 10:30 on Friday night, so we got to hang out and chat a bit before heading to bed (I wound up working Friday night until about 1 am) and getting up Saturday morning to head to our first appointment at 10:30 am at the Renaissance Hotel downtown. This was with a hotel that we wound up not liking for our wedding. The hotel was beautiful and definitely a place we would love to stay, but with a small ballroom with red carpet (clashing with pink!) and limited patio space, we knew it wasn't what we were looking for.

Our next appointment wasn't until 1 pm, so Zach and I enjoyed downtown with some exploration and lunch!

Charleston has so many beautiful churches! No wonder it's called the Holy City!
We came upon this one by deciding to explore a path through a set of iron gates and wound up at this church through a graveyard garden path.
This Catholic church is enormous with stunning architecture!
Isn't downtown Charleston just awesome!

We had a delicious lunch at Toast of Charleston before heading across the Ravenel Bridge to Mount Pleasant for our second appointment at the Pavilion at Patriot's Point, which went much better than the first! We LOVED this venue!!

After the two wedding appointments of Saturday, we stopped by Palmetto Moon to pick up something for Zach's groomsmen (more details on that later!) and headed back to the house to spend time with Caitlin and Dan. We had a fun dinner at a Greek restaurant and hung out at the house with the pups for the rest of the night. It was relaxing and perfect!

Sunday Caitlin and I hit up the outlets to do some shopping! I had a great time and picked up a dress that I think I'm going to wear for our Charleston engagement pictures next month, as well as a top for the second engagement pictures outfit, and some dress pants and top for my defense next week (AHHH).
I loved having some girl time shopping and catching up with Caitlin!

Sunday early evening Zach and I headed downtown to meet with our fabulous photographer, Jen from Carolina Photosmith. We met at Kaminsky's Baking Company and it was fantastic! I had a chocolate chip cookie sundae, Zach had bourbon pecan pie, and Jen had cheesecake. Each dessert looked so good it was hard to choose!

Afterwards Zach and I met Caitlin for dinner at a great seafood restaurant. By the end of dinner I was stuffed with delicious food!

Monday was a marathon wedding venue day. We had a bright and early appointment at 8 am in Mount Pleasant at the Creek Club at I'on, which involved getting up at 6 am to make sure we were out the door by 7 to beat rush hour! We LOVED this venue as well!

We had a little while before the second appointment at 10, so we crossed back over the bridge and walked around Waterfront Park (my favorite FAVORITE part of Charleston!) before making our way to our second appointment at the Wickliffe House.
This house was gorgeous and wonderful to see, but we also decided this wasn't the place for us. The parking situation wasn't great, and we were hoping for a bigger lawn. We headed back downtown and enjoyed some strolling and shopping before a yummy lunch at the South End Brewery.

Afterwards we headed to the Charleston Place Hotel for our 12:45 appointment. This hotel was amazing! It was so huge and had shops and everything right in the hotel! The courtyard was to die for! We were still hoping for more of an outdoor feel so this wasn't the place for us.

We enjoyed the beautiful weather and walked around the Charleston Market for a bit.
I love Charleston's beautiful churches!
Palm trees and waterfront views, what could be better?

Our next appointment was at the Rice Mill Building, which was a fantastic venue! This waterfront venue was brick and historical with fantastic views and tons of room. There were also two great decks for outdoor space. We were really interested in this venue when we were narrowing it down later, but wound up deciding against it because while it was beautiful, the rentals we would have had to get to make it what we are picturing would have made this venue out of our price range.

Our last and final (whew!) appointment was the beautiful Thomas Bennett House. I would have booked this place in a heartbeat if it wasn't for the rental fee that was wayyyy out of our price range (in fact, I don't understand why anyone would pay that astronomical fee). Gorgeous and spacious gardens with an amazing wide porch and great facilities for the bridal party, groomsmen, and guest bathrooms were amazing. I was really sad we wouldn't be able to swing this place.

We headed for a treat to discuss the options and do some number crunching. After an hour of discussion, we narrowed it down to two venues...to be continued tomorrow for Wedding Wednesday!

I also need y'alls opinions!

Which picture do you like better? I want to enter a contest for Yoga Journal.
I like the lighting in this picture. However, I don't like how I didn't lunge deeper into the pose.
I like the pose in this picture, but I wish the lighting was better!
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  1. Use the 2nd one. I can't wait to see what venue you pick.
    Just curious.. how much was the rental fee?

  2. Gosh, I thought I was a busy bee! I like your pose in the second picture, but you are right about the lighting. Hang in there!

  3. I am so excited for you all! I was three seconds away from booking the Rice Mill, but I just could not justify that price. It's rediculious what people excpet for weddings these days, it's a circus! That and Charleston is the number 3 destination spot to get married at. Looking forward to reading all about your wedding planning!!! Such a fun time!

  4. I love Charleston, it is a perfect place for a wedding!

  5. I love Charleston! Your planning is making me excited for my cousin's Charleston wedding in December! :)

  6. Ah! How exciting! I can't wait to see which venue you choose! I'm sure you can't go wrong in Charleston! :)