Tying the Knot in a Meaningful and Memorable Way (Without Losing Our Savings or Sanity)

Monday, January 4, 2010

Hip, Hip Hooray for 2010!

It feels like it's been forever. I've missed you all!

I guess traveling through six states in two weeks can make a short vacation feel longer than it is.

This season was our second holiday as a married couple. We're still trying to figure out how to navigate two families who are 981 miles apart (and 1,000 miles away from our house in Houston) without stressing ourselves out (and still make time for friends).

We had a good plan this year: drive from Houston to my family in Tampa (with our bloodhound, Hoss), stay for 2.5 days, fly to Bloomington to see Matt's family, stay for 2.5 days, fly back to Florida, drive to Naples to hang out with our friends at a birthday party/New Year's Party (with bowling!), and drive back to Houston (with enough time to do laundry and go grocery shopping before the work week started).

However, an unexpected medical emergency affected our plans (but ended up reminding me what marriage is all about). When Matt and I were about an hour outside of Tampa on the first leg of our journey, we got a phone call letting us know that Matt's grandfather was back in the hospital and was gravely ill. I told Matt he should change his flight and fly to Indiana early. He wasn't sure what to do. I urged him to be with his family in their time of need, despite the fact that we wouldn't be together on Christmas.

Once he rebooked his flight, we decided to have a "Car Christmas" by exchanging gifts. I gave him a living, growing scrapbook of our past four years together, as well as a coupon for a wood-working class. Matt gave me a book about growing plants in shade (since we have a shady backyard), a coupon for two massages, and a collection of vintage postcards. It turns out he's been sneaking into the back room of the antique shop we go to on Saturdays, and he's been squirreling away postcards from locations that have meaning to us.

Fortunately, Matt's grandfather recovered, and we enjoyed our time in Bloomington. Afterwards, we trekked to our friends' birthday party/New Year's shindig. We completed our yearly reflection forms and made our collages to visually represent our goals for the new year.

As always, I feel like I take on too many projects. This year, I'm going to be extra cautious of what I say yes to. I'm going to prioritize building a garden at our home, maintaining the time bank, updating my education blog more frequently, fully settling into our home, cultivating the ability to relax during stressful situations, nurturing my creativity through crafty projects, forging more friendships, saving money, starting a non-profit to promote the proliferation of public Montessori schools, maintaining my personal blog, strengthening our marriage, learning to love, love, love, and preparing my body/mind/soul for pregnancy.

I'm super-excited to continue updating 2000 Dollar Wedding at least five times a week. We have a lot of new features in the queue, and we have two contests coming up this month.

I hope to continue providing a forum to share ideas about how to plan a meaningful and memorable wedding without losing your savings or sanity! Of course I can't do it without you. There are lots of ways to contribute to 2000 Dollar Wedding:
  1. Send me a question about wedding planning. I'll take a shot at providing advice and then lots of really helpful people will chime in with their perspectives.
  2. Share your wedding with us!
  3. Write a guest post about some aspect of wedding planning.
  4. Become a Facebook fan to receive more frequent updates from Chez 2000dollarwedding or follow us on Twitter.
  5. Leave a comment (anonymously if you want!). Your insights bring a smile to my face on a daily basis. Thank you!
Raising my glass (of calcium-fortified orange juice) to toast the new year and you!

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Geezees Custom Canvas Art said...

Great post...hope your New Year is amazing!

Ms Bear Cub said...

So happy to hear about your wonderful travels over the holidays! :) & I'm definitely looking forward to more awesome posts in 2010 :)

Kelsey said...

Welcome home! I really missed your posts, my mornings at the office felt lonlier without reading an update before I dive into work! As of Jan 1 we were exactly 3 months until our wedding, and we are still finalizing our website and hoping to get our email invitations out by this weekend. Things are coming together but I can't believe it's so close - definitely trying to focus on the exciement of it all and letting go of feeling stressed about planning. Your blog helps calm me down and reminds us what a wedding is all about. Thanks!

miss fancy pants (the bride) said...

Welcome back and happy new year to you, Matt, Hoss and the chickens!

Great post, that's definitely an ambitious list full of worthy causes, so I applaud you.

Looking forward to more of your advice in the new year and as my wedding day creeps closer and closer.

erin.patrice said...

How fun!!! Happy New Year!

Brenna said...

Great post... I love how your list of goals is so ambitious (I always get very excited about self-improvement). I love all new years for the obvious reflection opportunity they provide... school years, actual years, etc. I think my 8th grade students all thought I had gone mad today when I brought up changes I wanted to make in our learning after my new year's reflection.

We are less than six months away from our wedding, and I wrote this weekend about how I needed to set aside the wedding stuff for a month and focus on other aspects of life (after sending a couple deposit checks). Thank you for the inspiration you provide for weddings and other aspects of life. Happy New Year!

Jessica said...

I loved your site when I was planning my wedding (helped me resist the crazy wedding industry!) but really love your post-wedding, marriage & life & dogs posts. Thanks for offering a glimpse at a life where people really do try "be good"! Reading your posts always makes me feel a little better about things (and I am loving the living scrapbook idea!). Happy New Year!

Sara E. Cotner said...

Awww...you all are awesome. Your comments make me even more excited about the new year!

Katie said...

Welcome back! I am glad to see you around again! As time allows, I will go through your old posts... one of my favorite blogs! I'll be following this yr!

A-L, said...

I've read your blog off and on for awhile, and it's just an inspiration. Your New Year's post makes me feel the need to accomplish more in my life, particularly since I feel several connections to yours & Matt's life (I'm a 6th grade English teacher who went to IU-Bloomington). So if you can do all these 20 million wonderful things, why can't I? Good luck with your list and have a happy 2010!

Marlo (aka Mama Frog) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Marlo (aka Mama Frog) said...

Happy New Year Sara & Matt! Can't wait to read about how this exciting new year unfolds for you both!

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