Trash the Dress, kinda

August 31st, 2009

On July 28th, we headed downtown to meet up with Mitch for a photoshoot. “We” isn’t typical for a Trash the Dress shoot, but I asked Mitch for a favor since we didn’t have many photos with our siblings Kevin and Lexi on the actual day of the wedding.

We all got back into our wedding attire. I wore my reception dress, Melissa Sweet’s Mari, and we had a great time on the train tracks and rocks.



Check out more here.

I really love seeing pretty things on contrast with the rugged. We were never interested in photos on golf courses, churches, or the woods. Nope. Urban, cityscapes were more our thing. We just asked him to take us where a bride doesn’t make sense and he did! It was so much fun. The shoot lasted for about an hour and in the end, we got some really amazing shots. Check out Mitch’s work.



The Bride Tea Ceremony

August 31st, 2009

After he succesfully made it through the door game, the guys and his family piled into the house where the tea ceremony commenced. At the bride’s house, the groom’s family asks the bride’s family for permission to marry her to their son. (Full explaination of the ceremony here.)

These photos were taken by Mitch Ranger.

In a Vietnamese ceremony, the bride’s house has a sign at the front door saying "Du Quy" which essentially means "home of the bride".

Vietnamese Sign for Home of the Bride

Our ushers carried in the roast pig, a traditional dowry item.

The pig

In Asian culture, the mother of the bride is the one who takes her to her groom. My mother walked me down the stairs.

Then, my grandpa (the Bride’s representative), introduces the bride to the guests.

My family representative

Me

The guests

The guests

His parents tell my mother that they will love me as their own and wish to include me as one of their family members. At times, this was pretty emotional.

Groom's parent's asking for permission

Groom's parent's asking for permission

My mother was the tearjerker for sure, though. She said some private words and then granted him her blessing to marry me. They hugged, then I hugged =).

Groom's parent's asking for permission

Groom's parent's asking for permission

Caught little moment.

Sharing a moment

The representatives of each family light a candle and place it on the alter.

Lighting the candle

Jewelry, which is a significant part of the dowry, is then placed on the bride.

Placing a necklace on the Bride

Earrings are of the most significance to a Chinese bride. The groom’s mom offers the jewelry to the bride’s mom. In our family tradition, the bride’s mom then offers the groom’s mom to help her put on the earrings. (If it looks painful, it was. They were the screw-on type and they both had claws.)

Placing earrings on the Bride

Then it was our turn to light incense to my ancestors.

Lighting incense to honor my ancestors

After being accepted by the ancestors, we offered my family tea. Each family member accepted the tea and then offered us either advice or good luck wishes. The oldest couple goes first, then parents, then other immediate relatives.

Offering tea to my great aunt

If the room was dry, my mother changed that. She gave him an origami $2 heart, signifying that we were now two people with one life. In the middle of the heart was a dollar coin that my late grandmother had dipped in gold for her granddaughters’ husbands to hold safe.

Offering tea to my mom

Mom giving him the heart

More tea offerings

Offering tea to my uncle and his family[*]
Offering tea to my uncle and his family

Offering tea to my aunt

After we offered the tea, he got a dose of what it takes to be a woman. He tripped all over his traditional Ao Dai.

Ao Dais are tricky

Afterwards, the pig was cut in half to feed the guests. It is traditional to consum half of the offerings at the bride’s house and take the rest back to the groom’s house.

Cutting the pig

Guests eating

Around 11AM, everyone gathered outside to travel to the groom’s tea ceremony.

Off to Lansing

Here we go!



Wedding Photos by Mary Lou

August 30th, 2009

My mother’s friend took these photos for us on the day of the wedding!

< < Back to gallery



The Door Game II

August 28th, 2009

First, you can read about what the Chinese Wedding door game is here. Essentially, the groom has to prove to the bridesmaids that he is worthy of marrying the bride.

I think the girls enjoyed this. The only thing that went wrong was that the guys left their money on the bus so the girls did not receive any lucky money on that day. (They will later!) Donny was asked to do all kinds of things – mainly singing and dancing. We were on a time crunch because the guys arrived late due to traffic. Our auspicious time frame was between 9AM and 9:30AM. They arrived just after 9, so the games had to be rushed.

The procession, led by the family representative, starts.

Groom's procession

The representative came to the door and was rejected by my sister.

Door Game: No! You can't come in!

…and the games began. Lexi giving him instruction.

Door Game: No! You can't come in!

Kiss Your Groomsmen

He was asked to kiss all of his groomsmen. Pay attention to the beginning, he was tricked by his brother.


See it on flickr

Here are some great still shots from Mitch.

I think he liked it.
Door Game: Kiss the Groomsmen!

Oh, maybe not.
Door Game: Kiss the Groomsmen!

Ed enjoyed it!
Door Game: Kiss the Groomsmen!

Door Game: Kiss the Groomsmen!

I’m Too Sexy

Lexi said strut on the catwalk and that is what he did. Here is a video of Donny struting to "I’m too Sexy", sung by his groomsmen.


See it on flickr

More shots from Mitch.

Door Game: Strut Your Stuff!
This is obviously why I married him.

Door Game: Strut Your Stuff!

On the catwalk

Serenade the Bride

After "I’m too Sexy", the girls could not get enough of the serenades, so they asked him to sing our song to me. I was hiding upstairs, which is why he was looking up. Our song is "You and Me" by Lifehouse. I could hear him and was hysterically laughing when I heard this.


See it on flickr

Spectators

Unfortunately, I was not "allowed" to watch, but our families did…

One of the flower girls laughing from inside.
My cousin watching from inside

Peeking out the window
Peeking out the window

Definitely a memorable highlight.



Wedding Photos by Karen

August 27th, 2009

Our MOH, Karen, took these photos for us on the day of the wedding!

< < Back to gallery



Wedding Photos by Jill

August 26th, 2009

Our wonderful bridesmaid took these photos for us on the day of the wedding!

< < Back to gallery



Knottie of the Week

August 25th, 2009

On September 2nd, I went live on the air for theknot’s segment called The Knot Live. It airs every Wednesday at noon EST. They have approximately 25 minutes of interviews with people in the wedding industry and then the last five minutes are to interview a knottie.

The requirement is that anyone called "Knottie of the Week" has to post on the messageboards. I post on DIY, mainly. They also require that you have a bio of some sort to drive traffic around their site. I have this website, but I made a quick bio using this page. Here is my The Knot bio.

They contacted me about a week and a half in advance of the episode to do preliminary interviews. They picked pictures from my flickr albums and then scripted questions to ask me based on those pictures. This is the thumbnail work for my interview.

Thumbnails for my interview with The Knot, click to enlarge

They had a list of approximately 15 questions with to-the-point answers to go through – ALL in 5 minutes. Well, after multiple interviews, it averaged about 6-8 minutes. When the episode went live, they actually had TWO minutes, if that. So we only went through maybe 4 questions and then they cut me off!

They posted the episode here on The Knot Live. Unfortunately, you can’t skip around the video. I am the last couple minutes. They link my bio on an archive ingredient list of the episode.

Screenshot of my interview on The Knot Live

Here are screenshots of the episode.

Screenshot of my interview on The Knot Live

Screenshot of my interview on The Knot Live

Screenshot of my interview on The Knot Live

Screenshot of my interview on The Knot Live

Screenshot of my interview on The Knot Live

Screenshot of my interview on The Knot Live

Screenshot of my interview on The Knot Live

About a week later, I received a very nice Thank You from the ladies at The Knot. Click to enlarge these

Goodies from The Knot

Goodies from The Knot

Goodies from The Knot

Goodies from The Knot

So thank you back to the knot team for the nice gift. I’ve been looking for design books and cook books to add to the library!



Wedding Photos by Jenny

August 25th, 2009

Our friend, Jenny, took these photos for us on the day of the wedding!

< < Back to gallery



Wedding Photos by Grandparents

August 24th, 2009

My grandparents took these photos for us on the day of the wedding!

< < Back to gallery



DIY | Tile Chargers

August 23rd, 2009

<< Back to DIY

Tools:

  • Chargers from Home Depot
  • Strong muscles

I originally planned to rent the round silver chargers for each guest setting, but no one gave me a price I liked.

So instead, we bought 12" by 12" chocolate brown tiles from Home Depot and used those as our chargers. It’s not DIY, but it was a different idea and I loved the way the diagonal setting looked underneath the dinner setting. They were only about $1 or less a piece, which was well below the $3 rental charge for the silver chargers that you can’t even keep!

The boys delivered the tiles to the venue and they took care of placing them at each setting!

DIY in Action

Here is how the "chargers" looked on the day of the wedding. I’m annoyed that they put coffee cups on the table as we asked them not to do that.

diy dinner chargers for wedding reception

diy dinner chargers for wedding reception

Now that we have all of these tiles, we plan on re-tiling the fireplace and updating the bathrooms with them! A little piece of our wedding day can stay in our home.

<< Back to DIY