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Archive for November, 2010

We ordered our wedding rings today.

November 30th, 2010 at 06:53 pm

We are getting them from the same jeweller who made my engagement ring. I've decided to keep a tally of our marriage/wedding party costs. I doubt they will be useful for anyone, because we're not doing things traditionally - but maybe some aspects of it might be interesting to SOMEONE out there Big Grin

So far we have spent:
$265 - Marriage Registration
$100 - Wedding Ring Deposit (To Pay: $887.00)

The rings will probably be ready in two weeks. The reason we ordered them so early is because my engagement ring took months to make - and even though the jeweller is ordering our rings from another company and not making it himself, we just were not sure how long that would take.

hmmph, over it already.

November 23rd, 2010 at 06:53 pm

This party planning business, that is. I started to research the cost that we're going to be looking at, and although I was initially thrilled at hall rental prices (around $20-$80 a day, depending on which one), I then started to research the price of catered finger-food. Basically, I think we're looking at roughly $500-$1000 for food, and I'm not even sure if that includes waitstaff.
I don't have any problems asking the guests to bring their own alcohol, but I do think we should supply the food. Simply because some of these people will be travelling hours to get here, and also it's not feasible to ask them to bring a plate because of that reason as well - and we have already ruled out having this thing at a restaurant (too many people to organise having it at a 'nice' restaurant, and restaurants seem to jack up the price at the mere SMELL of the word 'wedding' etc).
I imagine that there are a million other things that will incur 'hidden costs' that I haven't even begun to think of. I am not particularly skilled in visualising a 'theme' or the 'decor' for an event, those types of things - I just don't see the point, so when someone asks me something along those lines, my mind goes blank. Do people really notice ribbons, chair coverings, sashes, balloons, candles, flowers, table cloths? I don't - but that doesn't mean other people don't. (Though, I wish they wouldn't...)
I *realise* that wedding gifts will probably cover the cost of this thing, but that's not really important. I just hate organising stuff like this, and I don't see the point in a lot of it.

And I feel like I should be organising something fancy because people will get disappointed when they arrive, expecting something that it is most definately NOT. And then I get angry! Because I think, why should I be stressing out over someone elses expectations? Why are people placing these expectations on us in the first place? What's so wrong with the world where something intimate is turned into a public show to be judged and compared?

I understand it's a big dream for a lot of girls, but I can take it or leave it.

A friend suggested a wedding planner - yeah, I think not. I can just imagine them trying to cram a whole heap of junk down my throat and charging me an exhorbitant amount for the service. Or taking one look at my 'plan' and running for the door.

Anyway. Long story short, this is me venting. :/

we have set the date.

November 21st, 2010 at 02:24 am

February 15th, 2011 - is the date that we are getting married. There was no particular reason for the date (though I just realised when typing it, that it is the day after Valentines day. ha!) rather, it depended on another persons availability.
I think he was rather taken aback that we were asking him to choose the date that we get married, but said he felt honoured to be a part - seeing as only him and our two registry witnesses (and of course the people at the courthouse doing their daily jobs) will share in that day. It is a Tuesday - which means I will have to organise a day off work.

We have also decided to have a 'Wedding Party' in the mid year (so - 3-4 months after we get married). This will give us time to plan it, invite family & friends and let them organise themselves, & save a small amount of money for it. It is not really what I want, but I do have to consider that we are GETTING MARRIED and that is about two people forming a union. And as I said, while it is not something that I necessarily want, it *IS* something that DF wants, and so we will do that.

When I pointed out that we were initially planning to do the thing in February to avoid what will *probably* happen at the wedding party (eg family feuds) I think DF's exact words were 'Yeah well, it's meant to be a day about us & family, so if they can't put their problems aside for one day, then they can go and get....'

Which is true. I am taking the stance that if *anything* happens, from anyone, even my own mother (which is highly likely) I am just going to breathe deeply and walk away from the situation. Like I mentioned in my last marriage post, no one is going to change, so I can't do anything about it. But I can choose not to be involved, and I can choose to stop caring about it. Because by caring, I waste my time, energy and life-force, and it gives me nothing in return - atleast in these particular situations anyway.

I will just have to do a whooooole lotta yoga that week, as it seems to be the only thing to keep my emotions at bay!

Atleast in this way, I can have my dad as part of the celebrations, which is something that I *do* want. I will call them in the next few weeks to tell them of the plans, anyway.

The second factor is of course, cost. After working through the 'family issue' I had a big meltdown about the cost of this thing, in which DF had to calm me down and singularly discuss each aspect, so that I could see that what we have planned probably won't cost a lot - but I still have to do research and find out exactly. But, our plan is to have caterers supply nibblies and fingerfood, most likely have guests BYO alcohol, and to rent a little hall somewhere close to home. My dad is rather traditional in these things (I think it is actually stemmed from my stepmum, who nudges at him and says 'you know, you're supposed to do this...'). For example, the father of the bride is meant to buy the alcohol for a toast at the engagement party - and that is what he did, last year. And so from that reasoning, it's possible he expects to pay for the alcohol at the wedding party. I will let him know that it's not required, but if he insists, I will probably only make it wine and beer, as that is pretty standard as to what we've seen at other weddings.

So, even though it seems like an about-turn from my previous post, I think it will be ok. We are still doing what we planned, but are basically having a big friends & family get together a bit later in the year. I do feel bad for planning to exclude friends and family that WANT to be a part - it is just those few who's unpredictable unwanted behaviour makes it difficult to imagine having a 'nice' day. But, I am going to not let it worry me. This thing is meant to be low maintenance, so I am not going to even think about it any more.
And I do feel bad because even though I am not that thrilled about weddings and tradition, it *is* something that DF wants, and just because I don't want to do something doesn't mean DF doesn't want to do it either, and I don't want him to miss out on something that we only really have one opportunity for, just because I'm being stubborn.

The other thing is, we are not keeping the February 15th a secret. DF's sister and BIL married a bit over a year ago, and it was all very hush-hush, as they planned to have a 'big' wedding this year, next year or the year after. The reason they married was because they wanted the same last names on the birth certificate of their daughter. But now, they are having a second child, have spent loads renovating, and buying a new car, and it seems the dream big wedding will probably never eventuate. But now it is kind of hard for them to announce that they have been married now for over a year. So because of that, we've decided to tell friends of our plans, and let them know there will be a celebration a few months later. This way, they'll know about the actual marriage date and can be happy for us, but know that they will be included in something that is special as well.

started studying, and other updates...

November 16th, 2010 at 08:33 pm

I don't seem to get much time for updates here lately, it appears they are becoming a once-weekly event.

I started studying on Monday. Since it's only Wednesday I don't have a lot to say about it Big Grin. At the moment I am more concerned with figuring out if I am moving too fast or too slow through the modules, and organising the rest of our lives around it!

I am studying two subjects, and they are both extremely different from each other. I am actually quite glad because they both give relief from each other, if you know what I mean. If I get overwhelmed with one way of thinking, I can switch to the other subject for a while.

One is a social science (organisational behaviour)- which I am enjoying, but because I haven't ever done anything in this field it has a greater difficulty level and I am just at the initial stages of wrapping my head around it.

The second one is basically an introductory accounting course (called accounting in decision making) which focuses on using figures to make financial decisions. At this stage some of it is new to me, but a larger portion of it is stuff I already know. It's easier for me to understand because I already work with books, so I know a lot of the terms and procedures. The only thing that I am not thrilled about is that there is a group assignment due in January. I remember from school that I really *dislike* group assessments. Not to mention that I am studying via distance education? It does say that you can write and ask to do it by yourself, which I will probably end up doing. But what would I say???

At the moment I am working (6am-1pm) then getting home, taking the dogs for a walk or doing half an hour of yoga (ideally I would be doing both each day, but because I am still unsure if I am working at a fast enough pace, I am only doing one activity after work, before study.) I then study from 2.30pm-6.30pm.

One thing that is kind of unfair, is each day when I have gone into my office to study, I have looked outside and it has been the most beautiful day you could imagine, makes me just want to sit on our deck with the doggies all afternoon. Because it's Spring, everything is lush and green. The sky is clear blue and even though standing in the direct sun is super-hot, on our deck there is a slight breeze which just makes it perfect book-and-a-cup-of-tea conditions! *sigh*

DF was all prepared to cook dinner on Monday, but came home with a sore throat and mild fever. Frown It's the thought that counts, I guess. We will see how he goes for the rest of this week/next week etc. Last night we had takeaway pizza, as it was Cheap Tuesday so only $6 per pizza.

Anyone have any easy, man-friendly recipes? Big Grin He is not super-skilled in the cooking department just yet, but I am hoping that will change soon.

I am going to Dreamworld (a ride themed amusement park) on Saturday with a friend. We got a voucher which admits up to 6, adults at kids prices, so we will be paying $39 per person entry. I can't imagine paying $77, which is the full adult cost. If it weren't for the voucher, I wouldn't be going! We are also planning on sneaking food and drink in, because even though you are not allowed to take it in, they charge huge amounts - $9 for a cup of coke!

Last week I had two new tyres put on my car ($228) and today I had a wheel alignment and something else that I can't remember... which was necesary to do to stop wearing of the tyres and a wobble in the steering wheel, to the tune of $244. Hopefully won't have to spend money on it until atleast it's next service!

Today I bought two exercise books and two highlighters as study aides - it helps for me to re-write things in my own words and I remember things better that way. $5.05.

DF's 30th Birthday went well. He was up at 5am Saturday morning to get the rest of the house ready for the party, and did not go to bed until 8pm Sunday! That's one way of saying goodbye to your 20's...

He got a good haul of presents too! $200 in cash, a $50 GC, Revisited (a 1st ed. book), and Gig Posters (another 1st ed. book), a bottle each of Cognac, Vodka, Sangria, Scotch Whiskey, three bottles of rum, a tattoo, some fancy home brewing mixes, a piece of original art from a friend of ours, two racing car seats for one of his project cars... Whew! Maybe I should throw a birthday party for myself next year... Big Grin


November 9th, 2010 at 06:50 pm

My younger brother lent my sister some money (when she didn't have a job - months ago). She ended up owing him $130, which is kind of a lot of money when you're 15 years old. Anyway, she said she would pay him back $20 a week when she got a job. She has been working 8-10 weeks now, and up until three weeks ago hadn't paid him a cent. When they started to stay with us, I told her she would have to pay him back larger amount per week. On payday, she came home with $4.50 to pay him back - all she had left. The next week, $15. Last week, I took her ATM card off her the day before payday, and made her transfer $35 after school when she got paid. This week, she wants to buy some frilly socks (because they're 'cool') for $9.99 online and go to see a movie with friends ($20). I told her no, and she started to argue with me about it.
She said it was unfair that she had to pay back such a large amount, seeing as her brother still had money leftover when he lent it to her. I said yes, but you said you would pay back $20 a week and you didn't pay him back ANYTHING for several weeks, which is why it has come to this. I also reminded her that she owed DF and I $15.
To make things worse, I tried to explain to her that sometimes you have to make sacrifices to do what is right. I used them staying with us, as an example. I said that yes, I had to do a lot of driving around, a lot more cleaning and cooking to have them stay. She then stormed away saying that DF and I didn't want her here, and sulked in her room for an hour. *sigh*
When she'd calmed down, I explained that wasn't what I was saying, and that the point of my conversation was to say that YES she borrowed money, YES she made an agreement to pay it back, and that because she didn't do what she said, she's going to have to sacrifice the wants she has now and forgo movies and clothes for a couple of weeks in order to make good. I went on to say that things are not always going to work out how you want them to, and you are NOT always going to get your own way. Sometime in the future a friend or family member might ask HER for help and she might see then what it involves. At the moment she's been on the recieving end from not only DF and I, but her brother, who lent her money, and he deserves to be paid back. DF and I also deserve her respect in return for what we are giving to her as well.

*sigh* Teenagers! It seems to be their way or the highway.

Am I being unfair? It is not as if she actually NEEDS money for anything. She walks to and from school, and has her lunch provided to her, and has clothes to wear. She earns $45 a week and DF and I are only trying to make her pay back $35 or $40 each week so that it doesn't drag on forever - and because we know that once she goes back to live with our mum, the paying back $$ won't continue. Grrr.

Something else that annoys me: I mentioned this to my mum, who said SHE would pay back DF and I the $15 my sister owes us to help 'clear her debt faster'. How does that help the situation? She's just being bailed out, and it will probably set the tone for the rest of her life. She will continue to expect help from our mum for life after this. I think it's ridiculous.
Also, I get the impression that my mum is trying to make DF and I look like 'baddies' for not allowing her to go to the movies with her friends. My brother and sisters stay at our home is drawing to an end, and I am beginning to get the feeling that my mums plan is to make it seem that we're the bad ones that don't let them do anything, and when they go back, my mum will be all 'cool' about everything and let them do what they want. (my mum is like that, overly manipulative and always trying to make out like it is someone elses fault.) The problem with this is, that was exactly how it was before, except my mum had no control over them in the end and they just did whatever they wanted. Then a few times she said 'No' and they disregarded her - and she was shocked. It turned into a big argument a few times, which is why they ended up staying at our house, because my mother was 'afriad' of them. I don't know what she expected???

Anyway, I have no sympathy for her if this is what she is doing - there will be no 'next time' at our house if this is the way she wants to play.


getting married

November 2nd, 2010 at 09:55 pm

We haven't completely decided yet, but are most likely going to get married some time early next year.

It's not going to be a big wedding. In fact, we are not having a wedding at all.

Recent events have made us realise that some things are NEVER going to change in our family. It wouldn't matter if we tried to talk it out, separate those involved, have group mediation, ignore it or turn a blind eye etc. People are going to remain as they are, and we have come to accept that we can't change them, no matter how much we plead.
It would be silly to expect things to run smoothly, and I don't want to have that burden on a day that is supposed to be fabulous and all about love and family.
And I don't want to save money and fork out for an event that is going to leave a sour taste in my mouth when I think about it.
We can't NOT invite the people involved either.
Also, I have had a couple of friends ask me 'When is the wedding date?' and then go on to say 'Oh, I love weddings...' etc. I have been feeling a huge amount of pressure to put on some type of show, which is really not my thing at all.

So we decided that, in the end, marriage is the unity of two people. When you pry away the layers of royal icing and lace, or whatever it is you have at a wedding, the bare-bones of it is that it's about two people saying they will be together forever.

And so we decided that instead, we will do something that is slightly alternative that WE enjoy as a couple, on the day, after registering the marriage, and that will be it. Maybe we will have a dinner out with some family members or friends, maybe not. Most likely we might make a quick weekend trip to see my dad - but that's it.

We have been talking about this for a couple of months now, and I think we have both felt a weight has been lifted. It feels so much better knowing that we don't have to do something solely because other people expect us to. I know it might upset some friends, but I can't help that.
My best friend is not fond of the idea. I'd go so far as to say she disapproves greatly. I think she thinks it's extremely unromatic.



November 1st, 2010 at 02:14 am

Wow, November already. Seems like only last week that it was January. How time flies.

November is already a spendy month, and it's only the first day! We have atleast $500 in out-of-the-ordinary expenses to go out, plus DF's 30th Birthday party food expenses (hoping for it to be under $60 including the cake materials).

Work is heating up for DF in the run up to Christmas (and then will die in January-February again). I think DF will be expecting us to be able to do some more house renovations in the slow months - but I am going to have to remind him that funds aren't what they were this time last year, not to mention an uncertain work schedule - which will mean that hopefully he will focus solely on PAINTING and landscaping, two things that are relatively cheap and take up heaps of time (and is something I'm not really that excited to do, personally. This is where I pipe up and whine about how I do the 'inside' chores and he does the 'outside' chores) Big Grin We already have the paint, too. And there are other things that need fixing that he can do without having to spend money. I might write him a To-Do list Smile

I start uni in two weeks from today! How scary! And to further freak myself out, I discovered you can view past tests online, so I checked out the one for my first subject. Kind of wishing I didn't, as it looks like complete gobbledeegook. Here's hoping by the end of it I know what it means...