Sunday, February 28, 2010

Free Money For Shopping You Do Anyway...

ebatesI have seen other brides blog about this in the past, but I have no idea what took me so long to get on the bandwagon.  Well, I'm on it now.  I signed up for EbatesEbates is this website that gives cash back for shopping, only you don't have to pay for anything or get any email spam in order to participate.  Here's how it works (1) go to Ebates, (2) look for the retailer you want and click on their name, (3) Ebates will reroute you to the retailer's website where you make your purchase as usual, (4) four times a year they will send you a check.

For example, I just bought some custom postage for shower invitations at Zazzle, spent about $100, and since they give 10% cash back I'm getting about $10 for it.  I also buy online from Sephora pretty often, and they give 4% back. See how this could add up?  My personal rule is that I don't use the service unless it is for something I need to buy anyway and the coupons make it all make sense- which has been more often than I expected.

I am also a big fan of Ebates because they have coupon codes on their website, which you can use for even more bargains.  And of course, once you have started shopping, there is nothing to prohibit you from using other coupon codes.  So my Zazzle purchase, for example, I used a code for 12% off, a code for $20 off, and a code for free shipping, so with the extra $10 from Ebates, my fancy postage became much more affordable.

My favorite stores on Ebates include:

The Apple Store (1%)

Ann Taylor and Loft (3%)

Barnes and Noble (8%)

Bliss Spa (4%)

Borders (4%)

Crate and Barrel (3%)

Gap (4%)

iTunes (3%)

JoAnn (5%)

Kate Spade (3.5%)

The Land of Nod (4%)

Nordstrom (3%)

Payless (3%)

PetFoodDirect (5%) - I use this one a LOT

Red Envelope (6%)

Target (3%)

Urban Outfitters (2.5%)

Vera Bradley (3%)

Victoria's Secret (2%)

Vistaprint (5%) - HEY BRIDES, SEE THIS?!

White House Black Market (2%)

1-800-FLOWERS (5%)

And the list goes on.  It's also a great place to book travel (car rental, hotels and airfare) for cash back too!  I will definitely be hooking this up for my next trip.

In the interest of full disclosure, I want you to know that if you sign up for Ebates by clicking on a link in this post, I get a referral credit- so signing up through this post would be very nice of you- but if you would prefer not to do so, you can navigate to Ebates directly in your browser, and I think in either case you will be happy you did!  I don't really mind if you use my referral link or not- I just think this is an easy way to watch pennies- and I think this would have been extra handy when planning our wedding, since we bought SO much stuff online!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Dating and Engagement: How Long is "Right" And When Should You Ignore Conventional Wisdom?

what-is-cost-cutting-dating--55I'm going to say it up front: I don't pretend to know the answer to the above question.  But as February comes to a close, I'm primarily just curious to know if there even is a right answer.  The reason why?  One of my besties just got engaged!  To someone who she had not been dating for very long (i.e. weeks, not months- and yes, she has a serious rock, it is for real).  My attitude?  We're all quite grown up and capable of making decisions, and she will always have my love and support.  Besides, if she is happy, who is anyone else to judge?  Frankly, if we all accepted conventional wisdom, most of us would be too frightened to ever even get married.

Just think of all the rule breaking that goes on these days.  I know happily married people who had kids before they were married.  Or people whose parents thought a 6 month engagement was too short and thus, a bad idea.  I know people who married someone who has been divorced.  And I know people who've been harshly criticized for meeting their spouse online.  Plenty of people poo-poo on these matches, and yet these are very happy couples, as far as I can tell.  And some of the plain vanilla, so called "perfect" marriages I've seen have completely fallen apart.  Is it all a crapshoot?  Does it come down to hard work?

What do you think?  In a society of increasingly fuzzy boundaries, are there any dating/marriage rules that just shouldn't be broken?  Or is it just more gray area to give us more gray hair?

image source

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Free Fonts and Why I Love Them

FontsI love me some free fonts.  They come in handy so often these days for various projects, from shower favors to thank you notes.  Adding an element of professional polish to even the most basic of labels, and making me look a lot more like a graphic designer than I am (which is not at all).  I have a pretty nice version of Microsoft Word at home, but my favorites were all downloaded from DaFont for FREE.   All you have to do is move your downloaded font into your computer's "font" folder, and it will be available to you in Power Point, Word, and more for use on special projects.

What fonts do you love?  Do you have any good tips for how to find great free fonts?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

We're So Famous!

We are officially famous.  Don't believe me?  Let me give you my most lawyerly argument which indisputably proves how famous we are!  :)

First, J. and I were in the NY Times wedding section a few weeks ago!  I didn't blog about it in order to preserve our anonymity (or what little of it is left) but it was so cool to share and enjoy with friends and family!

Second, President Obama sent us a congratulations card.  (What, you say everyone who invites the President to their wedding gets one?  Psshhh, please, you know nothing about how famous we are).

Third, of course you know our wedding was featured on Wedding Chicks, with incredible photos by Jessica Morrisy.

But did you know we were also famous on our honeymoon?  Well ok technically, it was after our honeymoon, but  nonetheless, the good people over at the U.S.S. Bowfin (an incredible WWII submarine we visited at Pearl Harbor) read the blog and saw some photos from our trip and now we are featured on their facebook page!

It makes me want to talk like a pirate or something.  Ahoy!  So anyhow, I have to say, we really enjoyed our time visting the Bowfin museum and are overjoyed to have some of our photos featured on their page.  Hooray for American history, vacations, and new cameras!

[caption id="attachment_2333" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Arghhhh"]Arghhhh[/caption]

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Matching 'Maids, Not Poor 'Maids


 It is my long-standing personal opinion that when it comes to selecting a bridesmaid dress, anything goes if you are the bride- you get what you want and your girls will wear it because they love you.  But shoes are a slightly different story.  Maybe it's because they're more likely than the dresses to be worn twice.  In any event, it's my personal belief that the nicest way to do bridesmaid shoes is to either (a) tell people a color (such as silver or black) and let them choose their own, or (b) pick a really inexpensive shoe.  I think either approach builds goodwill among the ladies... and I've said it before and I'll say it again, woe to the girl with a load of unhappy bridesmaids on her hands!  

For example, my dear friend R. recently chose shoes to go with our navy blue Jenny Yoo bridesmaids dresses.  The dresses are super swank, but the shoes are cheap n' chic.  From none other than Lela Rose for Payless!!  I heart these shoes.  And I can vouch that they look even better in person, if that is possible! 

[caption id="attachment_2325" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="$29.99 (click for source)"]$29.99 (click for source)[/caption]

But of course you don't have to limit yourself to just Payless.  Check out these hot pink lovelies from, yes, Target! 



And don't forget the junior's stores.     Charlotte Russe, for example, carries this great shoe in teal, gray and black, and I am loving the bling!

[caption id="attachment_2327" align="aligncenter" width="188" caption="$34.99"]$34.99[/caption]

 And these peacock flats are to die for.  Am I right?

 Even Baker's has some cute options (and I have't shopped there since I was 14).

[caption id="attachment_2329" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="$29.99"]$29.99[/caption]

 And don't forget chains like DSW, TJ Maxx and Marshall's either.  Just make sure you buy fast - they carry limited quantities- so your ladies aren't left shoeless!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Got Mah Hairs Did

On our wedding day, I woke bright and early (due to an unfortunately noisy heating unit in my hotel room) and excitedly threw on my special "getting ready outfit"- a juicy couture track suit (got it on sale of course, thanks Bloomingdale's!) with a "Bride" tank top I'd scored on sale from the Wedding Chicks in my favorite color- pink!  Armed with my most comfortable duds, I met up with my ladies and got ready to get my hair and makeup done!

For hair and makeup, I told the ladies that I would be getting myself made up at Panico salon in Oradell, NJ.  I told the girls they could do their own hair and makeup or join me- and most of the bridesmaids did.  Those who didn't actually had hair that was easy to style, so I was perfectly content to let folks choose for themselves, and in the end everyone looked lovely!

We got to Panico at 9 am and I was there until a little after noon- so yes, it was a long morning.  But as you can see, it was fun girl time!  One lesson I did learn in the process, however, was that I should  have built in more time.  We had a very tight schedule, and because we didn't stick to it very well, I ended up feeling rushed when I got dressed.  Did it matter?    Not really, no-- but if you're planning your wedding, take note!

The most important thing was that we all bonded, and we all really loved the way we looked when we walked out of there.  You'll see even more once I start posting the recaps with pro pics, but suffice it to say, Panico rocked it out!

[caption id="attachment_2222" align="aligncenter" width="432" caption="Pre-'Do"]Pre-'Do[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2215" align="aligncenter" width="432" caption="Taming my mane into submission"]Taming my mane into submission[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2218" align="aligncenter" width="432" caption="Look how cute my girls are, even pre-polish!"]Look how cute my girls are, even pre-polish![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2219" align="aligncenter" width="432" caption="Makeup time!"]Makeup time![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2220" align="aligncenter" width="432" caption="We were all smiles as our looks came together"]We were all smiles as our hairstyles came together[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2221" align="aligncenter" width="432" caption="A couple of final poses before we were on our way!"]A couple of final poses before we were on our way![/caption]

And how did we get here?  Checking InPractice Makes Perfect: The Rehearsal!; The Rehearsal Dinner!; The Rehearsal Dinner Slide Show; Girls Gone Wild!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Old School Disposable Cameras


With the advent of the digital camera, it seems that fewer people are jumping on the disposable wedding camera bandwagon.  It's like, soooo 1998.  But much like the year 1998 (the year of Savage Garden, K-Ci and Jo Jo, and also Backstreet Boys!) I have a hard time accepting that people don't find them fun anymore.  In fact, in light of bridesmaid C.'s wildly successful experience with these for her 30th birthday party (a "Doble Quinceanera") I think they could still be vogue- at least in the right context.  I know her party pals thought they were fantastic- and took awesome pictures to prove it!

It appears that we old school camera lovers are not alone.  I ran a google search and found that they're still beloved by brides and party planners alike!  C. made hers by tracing the outline of the disposable camera's sleeve onto vintage travel posters from Mexico- nice touch for a fiesta, don't you think?  But this could easily be done using homemade papers, coordinating card stock, scrapbook or magazine finds, maybe even fabric.  Miss Cola over on Weddingbee even created a free template you can print out on your paper before you cut, if you want to make your life even easier.  Miss Cola is one crafty diva!

[caption id="attachment_2186" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Miss Cola's final product (image from WB)"]Miss Cola's final product (image from WB)[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2187" align="aligncenter" width="249" caption="A view of Miss Cola's template (also from WB)"]A view of Miss Cola's template (also from WB)[/caption]

Of course, I'm partial to C.'s because I know all of the other touches that went into her big party... and look at them in action!  It would appear that Miss C. even made tri-fold table cards (remember when I made those for my Rehearsal Dinner menus?)  that she embossed for some extra spice in her theme color- blue.  Based solely on having seen this picture, I am absolutely, without a doubt, definitely planning to use this idea in some shape or form at one of the umpteen showers that are being planned this year.

[caption id="attachment_2188" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Nice, right?!"]Nice, right?![/caption]

Would you include old school disposable cameras as a part of your special event?

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Oahu-moon revisited!

I don't think I ever showed you any highlight photos from our last few honeymoon days in Oahu, so I thought now would be a good time to share!  After all, it's still too cold and I could use a little reminder of happier times without so much work!  So without further ado, some highlights of our time in Oahu-woo-hoo!

[caption id="attachment_2176" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="I check out the view of Honolulu after hiking to the top of Diamond Head crater!"]I check out the view of Honolulu after hiking to the top of Diamond Head crater![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2177" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Perfect. Rainbow. Perfect. "]Perfect.  Rainbow.  Perfect.  [/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2178" align="aligncenter" width="210" caption="Pipeline surf contest, north shore.  For reals."]Pipeline surf contest, north shore/[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2179" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Another gorgeous Hawaiian senset, as viewed from our room!"]Another gorgeous Hawaiian senset, as viewed from our room![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2180" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Hitting the decks of the U.S.S. Bowfin at Pearl Harbor."]Hitting the decks of the U.S.S. Bowfin at Pearl Harbor.[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2181" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="And wrapping up our trip, paying respects at the Arizona Memorial."]And wrapping up our trip, paying respects at the Arizona Memorial.[/caption]

J. and I are so fortunate to have been able to start our new life together with such an incredible vacation.  In these times when so many people are going through so many real, heartbreaking problems, having the means and ability to take this trip is not something we take for granted.  Every moment is precious and we will certainly treasure these memories.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Girls Gone Wild: Post Rehearsal Fun!

After the rehearsal dinner, we were all pretty beat.  But that didn't mean we went to bed like the responsible adults we're not.  Nooooo.  My ladies and I stayed up, drank a little wine (or fancy bottled waters) and visited.  After all, so many good friends were here from out of town, and I knew our wedding day would be nuts, so it was a good time to get some visiting in.  And so those who had a little energy left headed back to the big suite for some fun... in the form of goofing off, as all good friends do!

[caption id="attachment_2138" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="C. shows off the water, bottled with love by J. and I."]C. shows off the water, bottled with love by J. and I.[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2139" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="J. and B. unwind and laugh at the rest of the foolishness."]J. and B. unwind and laugh at the rest of the foolishness.[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2140" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="M., B. and I smile and try to look like grown ups for the camera!"]M., B. and I smile and try to look like grown ups for the camera![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2141" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="E. and C. work on their goddess poses."]E. and C. work on their goddess poses.[/caption]

Note, that at this point, there actually were quite a few guys in the room.  But they were sitting and talking and catching up like normal people.  Unlike we ladies, who are clearly NOT afraid to look stupid in front of boys.

[caption id="attachment_2147" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="S. and I channel our inner Carlton Banks by recreating the scene from the Fresh Prince of Bel Air where Tom Jones sang "It's Not Unusual."  I know you know what I'm talking about."]S. and I channel our inner Carlton Banks by recreating the scene from the Fresh Prince of Bel Aire where Tom Jones sang.  Oh come on, I know you know what I'm talking about.[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2148" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="C. and I show off our matching shirts; and later I show off my new pearls from J!"]C. and I show off our matching shirts; and later I show off my new pearls from J![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2144" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Meanwhile, lil sis B. tried to keep her big sis in line."]Meanwhile, lil sis B. tried to keep her big sis in line.[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2145" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="While other bridesmaids finished opening up their swag bags... and felt just a little sad to have destroyed the wrappings."]While other bridesmaids finished opening up their swag bags... and felt just a little sad to have destroyed the wrappings.[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2146" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="But eventually the time came for me to say goodnight to J... and so I did so via interpretive dance. As you can see, he was not taking my dance seriously.  So we said goodnight- and didn't see each other until I walked into that aisle the next morning!"]But eventually the time came for me to say goodnight to J... and so I did so via interpretive dance.  As you can see, he is not taking my dance seriously.[/caption]

It probably does not come as a surprise to you to hear that the next morning, despite our good intentions to get up and get a work out in, we did not do so. Oh but it was worth it!  A little silliness goes a long way to easing pre-wedding nervousness!

And speaking of silliness, that last picture, dear friends, is rock solid evidence of how much I love you all.  I look like a total nerd :)

And how did we get here?  Checking InPractice Makes Perfect: The Rehearsal!; The Rehearsal Dinner!; The Rehearsal Dinner Slide Show

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Brooklyn Bridge and My Bridal Shoot!

One of the things that kept me busy this past Sunday, other than making cake truffles for J., was that I met up with our photographer, the always mind-blowingly talented Jessica Morrisy, and we had a bridal photo shoot.  On none other than the Brooklyn bridge!  I had heard of doing "trash the dress" sessions before, but given my intense love for my own dress, hadn't considered it an option for myself.  But when Jessica offered to do a bridal session- a session where you have fun but don't ruin your dress- well, I was all for it!  I mean, who gets to wear their wedding dress two times?  Joy!

Given that it is winter, we had limited daylight on our actual wedding day for portraits- not to mention I was perhaps a tad emotional and overwhelmed by it all.  So doing a post-wedding photo shoot was really an excellent way for us to beef up some of the portraiture and have some fun playing with props, ideas, and backgrounds.  Jessica brought her boyfriend along (who was a great helper and super-cute) and we had the best time running around in the snow.  A huge, huge thanks to Jessica for yet another amazing set of photos!

And now for a teaser, courtesy of Jessica of course!


Monday, February 15, 2010

My Homemade Valentine

Happy President's Day everyone!  I hope you all have a lovely Valentine's day yesterday!  We definitely did!  I know I've mentioned before that this month we're on a "financial fast" which meant no gifts for V-day this year.  Frankly, for me, I find Valentine's gifts to be overpriced and overrated.  So rather than spin our wheels and spend our money, we aimed for the small and thoughtful this year... and for me, that meant making dinner (spinach salad, flank steak pinwheels, wild mushroom risotto and fresh, lemony asparagus- my own creation!) and yes, it was a really, really good dinner!  :)

J. is a big lover of chocolate so I didn't want to skip dessert.  But at the same time, I'm going through a particularly busy time at work (and an equally busy personal life) so I had to figure out something that wouldn't take too long.  The solution came to me last week during my daily blog review when I was reminded of Bakerella's recipe for cake balls!  Besides having a hilarious name, this recipe looked cute and simple so I decided to try my own spin on it- only I renamed them "cake truffles" so as to be taken slightly more seriously.

Bakerella's recipe calls for red velvet cake and cream cheese frosting which I ADORE- but J. loves chocolate.  So I did a devil's food cake with German chocolate icing (see Bakerella's link above for instructions).  I broke my cardinal rule and used cake mix and store-bought icing, because I was short on time (bad Sarah, bad!)... but I do think you could easily do this completely homemade.  Then I melted a good-quality semi-sweet chocolate for the coating, and added some sprinkles in red, while and gold (a bridal shower gift).  The result?  See for yourself!

[caption id="attachment_2246" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="mmmmm, yummy chocolatey cake goodness"]mmmmm, yummy chocolatey cake goodness[/caption]

Now, I'm a big believer that presentation is EVERYTHING so of course I also had to at least attempt some sort of V-day appropriate packaging.  Since I didn't want to spend any money, I ended up taking an old, standard gift box and turning it into a heart-shape.  To give you an idea of my approach, the below image shows (I hope) how I cut the box bottom.  I left the sides of the box intact and then shaped them to match the bottom, taping them into place when the new shape looked good to me.

[caption id="attachment_2248" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Try to pretend this rectangle is a gift box."]Box image[/caption]

Once my box was in the right shape I covered it with red and white papers.  Not being able to spend money, I downloaded these and these freebie printable papers, originally intended for dollhouses but perfect for my project.  I admit that it looks a little bit like a kindergartner did it, but I like to think it is kind of charming!

[caption id="attachment_2247" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="The box, pre-truffles"]The box, pre-truffles[/caption]

Once my box was ready, I decided to line it with waxed paper, to keep it nice for as long as possible.  I simply cut the waxed paper into a heart shape approximately 1 inch larger on all sides than the box, so the paper would line the sides of the box.  To get the paper to fit around the curves, I cut verticle slits into the paper's edge.  Easy peasy.

[caption id="attachment_2249" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Lined with wax paper"]Lined with wax paper[/caption]

Next, I glued some red ribbon onto the bottom of the box, for tying later.  And yes, the ribbon was recycled, I didn't buy that either.

[caption id="attachment_2250" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="With the ribbon..."]With the ribbon...[/caption]

And finally I filled the box with my creations.  Voila!

[caption id="attachment_2251" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Just add truffles!"]Just add truffles![/caption]

Before tying the bow, I added another layer of heart-shaped waxed paper, and then that was it!  A cute, homemade Valentine using groceries and freebies, something that still felt special despite the absence of big spending.  J. loved them!

[caption id="attachment_2252" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="A little more waxed paper, a bow, and we're in business!"]A little more waxed paper, a bow, and we're in business![/caption]

I think this would make such a cute thank you gift for someone throwing a shower- or maybe even a groom's gift.  As for me, I'll be incorporating them into my traditional repertoire of holiday baking from now on!

How did you celebrate Valentine's day?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!

Sunday will be my first Valentine's day as a married woman.  And though some people think its just a holiday for presents, I like to treat it as an opportunity to get creative (do you like the double entendre there?)  J. and I are currently on a "financial fast" which means no discretionary spending, a la the proposed Obama budget, and it also means we can't spend money on romantic gifts for one another.  The solution?  Make a valentine for your loved one!

The Wedding Chicks, for example, offer these adorable downloadable cards which would be useful for so many great projects!

[caption id="attachment_2154" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="hummingbird valentine"]hummingbird valentine[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2155" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="love postcard"]love postcard[/caption]

Or these freebies from Samantha Hahn:

[caption id="attachment_2156" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Adorable, no?"]Adorable, no?[/caption]

And don't forget to check out downloadables like these from the Vintage Moth!

[caption id="attachment_2157" align="aligncenter" width="255" caption="Victorian always wins me over..."]Victorian always wins me over...[/caption]

Of course, if all else fails, you can also go the mix-tape route.  Who doesn't love those?!  I don't yet know what I'll be doing, but I think I've got a good start!

Do you have any cheap or free tips for romantic valentines?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Rehearsal Dinner Slide Show

As promised, a post devoted solely to the highlight of the rehearsal dinner- a slide show of J. and I through the years.  I promise not to make you sit through 15 minutes of photos of the two of us as babies, toddlers, kids, teens, and later as a couple... but it was gosh darn cute.  J.'s brother D., our best man, put the show together so that photos of us were shown back to back in the same context- the "Sears baby photo", the "bathtub photo" and so forth.  And he set the whole thing to music.  I have seen slide shows of photos before, but never like this- even my brother A. got misty and it is nearly impossible to make that guy cry!

As an extra-special touch, D. made DVD's for our parents and for us, with a copy of the slide show on it to keep.  I cannot possibly emphasize enough what a great touch this was for our rehearsal dinner.  As an added bonus, it filled up some time so J. and I didn't have to give a long, boring speech (everyone hates wedding rehearsals with too much speeching, am I right?)  We just let the slide show do the talking.  I think everyone should do this.  I mean, look how cute we were!!

[caption id="attachment_2164" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="... as chubby babies!"]... as chubby babies![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2165" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="... dressed up and old enough to sit up too!"]... dressed up and old enough to sit up too![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2166" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="... at the beach!"]... at the beach![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2167" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="... tub time!"]... tub time![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2168" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="... with grandparents!"]... with grandparents![/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2169" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="... me just generally looking cute"]... me just generally looking cute[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2170" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="... let's talk about how much HAIR J. has in this photo!  :)"]... J. learning early in life that horses weren't his thing![/caption]

Did you or will you plan anything special for your own rehearsal dinner?

And how did we get here?  Checking InPractice Makes Perfect: The Rehearsal!; The Rehearsal Dinner!