Changes, More Flavors, and More Colors

Changes, More Flavors, and More Colors

It’s been over a month since we moved into this townhouse.  Ten days from now, my partner and I will be saying “I do”.  It’s been a crazy time and a dynamic September with so many changes, more flavors, and more colors to life.

My relationships with everyone is changing.  Everyone.  Even myself.  When my Mother and I go out to lunch, I offer to pay.  Every time.  And she let’s me.  Me feeling like I should pay, and that I want to, is a change.  Her continuing to let me pay, time after time, is an even bigger change.  My relationship with my Mother is complete 180 degree turn from where it was even a year ago.  It’s less mother/daughter, and more like two women who take care of and support one another.

My relationship with my partner has changed, and these changes I can only try and find the words to explain.  But, I guess I’m seeing her more as my spouse, as my own family member, and less like the girl I was once lucky to meet.  I’ve never had my own family before. “My” family?? What a change!  When I use to think of “my family”, I thought of my Mother and my Father.  I didnt’ think about my two older brothers, because they’ve both been married and have had their own families for quite some time now.

My relationships with my bridesmaids, with my friends, and coworkers are all different.  Things are just different.  Everything seems important lately, and so many things have been obvious.  Which people in my life are really good friends, which are acquaintances, which I can live without.  Who is behind me, who supports me, who is happy for me, and who just drains me.  Who really wants to see me succeed, and who is maybe also hoping for a day when I start to fall.

    I’ve started shopping in the misses department in department stores.  The junior sections have materials and styles that are just too young, too shiny, too not me.  I’m starting to shed my short shorts, my shorter dresses, and my clingier tanks.  Hugging and showing off my body just isn’t where I am anymore.  Instead, I find myself looking to cover my body up “appropriately, look sophisticated, and look like someone who I would want to meet.

I’ve always been really self-involved, and even that’s changed quite a bit.  It’s no longer just me, my wants, and my needs.  There exists this lovely woman who will shortly be my wife,  and whom I am inspired to take care of even more than I take care of myself.

My body is changing, and no, it’s not like that going through puberty change.  It’s more of a getting older and things starting to slow down more kind of change.  Things that were always problems for other adults around me are starting to be problems for my own body.  I’ve started talking to my older friends and older family members, seeking advice, trying new vitamins and medications.

Asking my older friends and family members for advice on life insurance and investments is also a change.  I’ve been driving more slowly, being kinder to timid cars around me.  I’ve been kinder to myself.  I’ve been judging myself and everyone around me much less.

There is definitely one huge, solid change, and I guess if I had to find words for it, it’s just that I don’t care about stupid things anymore.  Who cares if I’m over twenty-four hours behind on my Facebook timeline? I’ll catch up.  Who cares if more of my heterosexual married friends are continuing to become parents, and I still don’t feel ready yet? I’ll get there when I’m ready.  Who cares if the stranger I just walked past gave me a dirty look? I don’t know them, and their judgement of me says everything about them and nothing about myself.

Man, how I wish I could have stopped caring about things like this years and years ago!

…But it wasn’t my journey to.  It’s my journey to realize now that I don’t need to care.  I needed to do the work of saving money for this wedding we’re having, and for this townhouse we’re now living in.  I needed to face my insecurities and to be honest with myself about all my dislikes and annoyances with and about myself.

I needed to feel insecure and shaky so that I could find security in my own identify, and with the things I’m able to provide myself.  These changes have not been the easiest, but they were all needed, and now I’m happy this change has arrived.

2015, my wedding year, has definitely been the biggest year of my life so far.  But I have a feeling 2016 will also bring many changes, and I’m now feeling more solid in myself, and looking forward to them.

Our Double Lesbian Bachelorette Party

Our Double Lesbian Bachelorette Party

Our six bridesmaids threw my partner and I a joint bachelorette party this past Friday night, and it was AMAZING!!  They got all of us a huge hotel room for the night, and also a limo! One of my partner’s bridesmaids made a sh*t ton of jello shots, which we all took in the hotel room, one after the other, as we were getting ready.  I had about five or six myself, which is a lot for me.  I’m a light and occasional drinker.

We started the night at a lesbian bar where my wife-to-be and I were given free “bridal shots” from the bartender.  We all ordered drinks and hung out until we ended up at my/our favorite drag bar in D.C. where more of our friends met up with us.

12038529_10153595683861226_6815469760684725152_n  This was so much fun! Many drag queens from RuPaul’s Drag Race were there, including one of my favorite queens Tatianna .  A bunch of us met her out on the rooftop later where we talked with her for a bit, and even got a picture! One of my bridesmaids is a huge RuPaul who just recently moved back home from Georgia, and she was starstruck!

12039456_769611446068_4040358759558730704_n  We left the drag bar  after 1:00 am, after the show was over and we had all spent about an hour continuing to drink, dance, celebrate, and act crazy.  We went to Ben’s Chili Bowl which is a stable restaurant in the D.C. area, and then arrived back to the hotel room probably around 3:00 AM!

….Where we stayed up talking, laughing, and giggling even earlier into the morning.  Time, level of drunkenness, and all sense of responsibility were completely lost all night, and it was fantastic.  My partner and I were so blown away by how all out our bridesmaids went, and we were more than grateful to be thrown such an amazing bachelorette party.

We all somehow made it out of the hotel room the next morning barely hungover and went to Ihop for a follow up breakfast, which was also a blast.  The entire rest of the weekend was spent in high spirits from such a fun night.  It was probably the most drunk I had even been over the course of our four year relationship.  The night was perfect.

  Ten days until the wedding!

Summer 2015 Engagement Shoot

Summer 2015 Engagement Shoot

brandilynn_aines_photography-4512 brandilynn_aines_photography-4499 brandilynn_aines_photography-4488 brandilynn_aines_photography-4469 brandilynn_aines_photography-4457 brandilynn_aines_photography-4455 brandilynn_aines_photography-4450 brandilynn_aines_photography-1735 brandilynn_aines_photography-1706 brandilynn_aines_photography-1695 brandilynn_aines_photography-2 brandilynn_aines_photography-2-2 brandilynn_aines_photography- brandilynn_aines_photography--14 brandilynn_aines_photography--13 brandilynn_aines_photography--12 brandilynn_aines_photography--11 brandilynn_aines_photography--10 brandilynn_aines_photography--9 brandilynn_aines_photography--8 brandilynn_aines_photography--7 brandilynn_aines_photography--6 brandilynn_aines_photography--5 brandilynn_aines_photography--4 brandilynn_aines_photography--3 brandilynn_aines_photography--2This shoot was taken by our amazing wedding photographer.  The day of this shoot was the first day we met her since booking her over six months ago!

My partner and I are both very pleased with how this shoot came out.  The pictures were loved by our family and friends via Facebook and Instagram, and I can’t wait to one day print some of these and frame them for the walls of the townhouse we just moved into.

Ten days.  Our wedding is in ten days.  We’ve been engaged for over two years, and this is our second engagement shoot.  We are more than ready!

Sneak Peaks From Our Complimentary Smoke Bomb Engagement Shoot

Sneak Peaks From Our Complimentary Smoke Bomb Engagement Shoot

purple smoke bomb

Our amazing wedding photographer messaged me a few months ago and offered us a complimentary engagement shoot.  She asked if we would be interested in using colorful smoke bombs as a prop for the shoot.  My reply was “hell yes!”

The shoot was shot at public park this past Sunday, and it was so much fun!   We used five different smoke bombs-two green, a purple, a yellow, and an orange one.  These two photos are the sneak peaks she posted on social networks.  My partner and I are so excited to see the rest of the shoot and see how the rest of the photos turned out!

Smoke bombs are such a cool prop.  I’m greatly looking forward to making prints of these smoke bomb photos and framing them to hang into the townhouse we very recently moved into.

The wedding is three weeks away from this Friday! I’m nervous, excited, blown away, in awe,  ready, apprehensive, and frightened all at once.

We still need to chose a wedding cake.  We still need to write/come up with our vows.  We still need to choose a song to walk down the aisle to, and for the Father daughter dance.  There are still many small steps that still need to be completed.

But I’m no longer feeling nervous about what needs to be done.  I no longer care.  So much of the wedding and planning stress I’ve harbored for months and months has recently fallen away.

Because I have her, I met her.  I was lucky enough to find her, and I was even luckier to have  her offer her hand in marriage.

I’ve also recently stopped questioning how I got so lucky or what I did to deserve her.  I’m just so grateful to live with her, and to love her, and that we actually get to have this wedding! Three weeks and three days to go.

It cant’ come soon enough.  =)

When To Love

When To Love

Love when the weather is warm, when things are green, and lush, and the sunlight stays.  Love when the Summer gives us it’s shade at night. Do not love when Winter turns to Spring, when what was once frozen becomes soft again.  Hold strong onto love, or do not love at all before the year’s end festivities.  And do love tenderly at the start of when we celebrate love, when we are all dreary of Winter, and ever ready for Spring, and warmth.

Our Surprise Harry Potter Bridal Shower

Our Surprise Harry Potter Bridal Shower

My wife-to-be and I were given a time and a location for our bridal shower, and that was it.  No other information.  No mention of a theme, or of who would be attending our joint bridal shower.

11954686_10153550003471226_6830197621641290471_n  Our Harry Potter obsessed little hearts were greatly overjoyed to walk downstairs and see a Harry Potter bridal shower awaiting us!

11947507_10153550003796226_3488551008339205229_nOur six bridesmaids worked together to make this shower happen.  They had several tables displayed with Harry Potter books, treasures, foods, and the like!

11935017_10153118948621662_8162510628494671021_n Harry Potter confetti on one of the tables!11903851_10153550003946226_7609136709946859255_nThese cupcakes were topped with actual book pages cut into hearts!11898546_10153550005731226_5846723084089669793_nA lot of these foods were from the fictional Wizarding World!
11903832_10153550004231226_4236549619373686848_nOur bridesmaids even ordered Harry Potter soda covers!
They hung banners that represented the four Houses of Hogwarts11902309_10153550004521226_4854138619619836504_n 11904679_10153550017271226_3870637323582600211_nThese are actual chocolate frogs from Harry Potter World in Florida!11949301_10153550005881226_4223032368000701461_nThey had a few games for us and our guests to play, and one of them was Harry Potter bingo, which they created themselves!11899867_10153118823856662_995450692135288784_nWe also played a game where teams had to create a wedding dress out of toilet paper, and dress a teammate in it! I’ve never heard of or played this game before, but it was tons of fun.

11220139_10153550003296226_4501727545976338558_nBut I have to say, my favorite part of the bridal shower was the photo booth they created on Platform 9 3/4, along with props to dress like the characters from the books!

11913880_10153117335001662_7707707953925708347_n 11225295_10153117335326662_192667007596156928_n 1504967_10153117335216662_6416127671312621633_nNot all these things might be pictured here, but they had a robe, hats, scarfs, several pairs of Harry Potter’s glasses, Weasley hair, articles from Umbridge’s outfits, Harry Potter’s hair, etc.  It was tons of fun to take pictures with our guests!

11960110_10153117335541662_5955901217150677270_nMy bride-to-be and I had an AMAZING time! I’m so thankful for our bridesmaids, and for us both having close friends who just get us.