About Rachel&Sam

Thursday, December 2, 2010

No one said post-wedding was going to be so hard

Planning a wedding is far from easy. I get that and my previous blog posts probably hit the ball home, too. Although, you would think that going through the blood, sweat, and tears of planning a wedding that post-wedding would come out smelling like roses.  Not so, said the cat.

First, although not required, I decided to change my name to respect the family that Sam and I have newly created.  This required me to go to the Social Security Administration (SSA) and DMV first thing the day after we returned from our honeymoon.  At 9 am on the dot, I entered SSA and it was there, after an hour of waiting, that I realized I left my marriage certificate at home and had to book it over to the County Clerk to get another copy, so I could wait another hour to have my name changed.  Annoying, yes. But that was done. 

What they don't tell you at the SSA, or at least the Arlington County SSA, is that the name change won't be processed for 24 hours. Fast forward a few hours later to me sitting at the Arlington DMV. After two hours of waiting, I was finally called up to the window.  Unfortunately, the clerk informed me that my name hadn't been processed yet and that I would have to come back later for my license.  Fantastic. I love using vacation or flex days to wait in lines. The next thing that happened, I care not to share on the blog, but let me say it ended in tears of frustration and the first time I questioned, why does this have to be so hard?!  I was starting to feel like "Rachel No Name."

A month later, I went back to DMV only to find out that my NYS birth certificate was not an acceptable form of identification and that I would have to return to home to get my passport.  $60 later in cab fare, I had my new ID, but was completely frustrated once again by the back and forth required to get my license. Why is it that a NYS birth certificate is less acceptable than another state's birth certificate?!

I decided for "convenience sake"  and to limit confusion, to change my name at work. Once we returned from the honeymoon, I submitted the paperwork and heard nothing back. I started sending out weekly emails to human resources inquiring into what actions had taken place on my name change and if there was anything that I needed to do on my end. There were weeks where I didn't hear anything. My name finally changed almost two months later.

I thought I would be sad about changing my name, but because it was such a challenge on all fronts, I think I saw it as a goal as opposed to losing my maiden name and all that implies. I did, however, get very upset when I had to change my "518" phone number to a "703". Sam and I created a family plan with AT&T, which is great because he now has his own iPhone to play with instead of mine.  What I didn't know when we went in to start the plan was that individuals on a family plan need to have the same area code.  It didn't make sense for Sam to get a North Country number since we both live in Northern Virginia, but I wasn't ready to give up my number. Changing my name was something that was my decision and it was hard and I cried, but I did it.  Changing my number was not part of the deal.  I had my number for eight years and it made me feel connected to the North Country. A little piece of Rachel is now gone and some random person in the North Country gets to have it.

It's weird, right?!  I'm more upset about losing my number than my name.  I guess I can explain it like this: Sam asked me to marry him and I said yes. I chose to marry him like I chose to change my name.  No one asked me if I wanted to change my phone number and if they had, I would have said no. Instead, I didn't really have a choice.

OK, its out there.  I'm done whining about this.  As a heads up - don't ask me my new number. I don't remember it anymore.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Three Week Anniversary - what what!!

Married three weeks!  Where does the time go?!  To celebrate, Sam lit a Glade scented candle and we're watching the Braves play the Giants.  There was just a 6-3 double-play.  Marriage is teaching me lots about baseball. . . 
Clyde loves the Braves. Also, low res ring shot!  Hot.

Actually, I'm not feeling that hot right now.  My tum is doing flip flops and Bonnie drank all my water.  Despite me feeling like total crap, I wanted to post the link to my photographer's note for some of the pictures.  She sent them to us two weeks ago and got us all twitter-pated.  I didn't want to lose the link on a long facebook wall, so I am using the blog for filing purposes/easy access.  If you have seen the pictures, check them out again and get excited for the new ones that will be coming soon-ish.  We should be getting together with Stacie in the next few weeks to get more images.  If you haven't seen them, take a look!  They are really lovely.  I still get butterflies looking at them.  Ok, I need to get more water and pay attention to the game.  YAY marriage!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Intrepid Honeymooners - Day One: Rehoboth Beach, DE. . .

We said goodbye to our Bonnie and Clyde before packing up the car to drive to Rehoboth Beach, DE. 
Starting our drive to Rehoboth Beach, DE
Our trip drove us over the Bay Bridge and through the farmland in Eastern Maryland and ultimately in Delaware.  Sam and I, being the nerds that we are, listened to last weeks 60 Minutes Podcast on the drive.  We arrived at the Delaware Inn at 3 pm, where Sharon, the house manager met us to give us our keys and told us about the area.  After dropping off our stuff and layering on some sunscreen, we walked three blocks down to the boardwalk to take in the beach and the boardwalk.  It was sunny, gorgeous and, thanks to the September off-season, relatively un-crowded.  We purchased some peanut butter fudge and saltwater taffy before walking up to Dogfish Head Brewpub, which was less than a quarter of a mile from the B&B.  
The B&B we stayed in
We arrived and put our name on the list for a table and ordered up two 2 oz tasters of 120 IPA, a beer we both tried for the first time in April, and at 19-20 percent ALC., 2 oz is all you need.  We were seated in a booth and ordered our next round – Punkin Ale and 75 Minute IPA (a mix of 60 Minute and 90 Minute).  We ordered fried pickles for an appetizer.  I had a crab cake on a Caesar salad and Sam had a tuna steak sandwich with fresh cut fries paired with a Palo Santo Maron.  We took our time finishing our beers and watching the Jets v. Pats game.  A little girl came over to our table to ask if she could take our picture, which made me want to laugh at the randomness of it all. 
Intrepid honeymooners

We grabbed some beer and gin from the Dogfish Head Shop before heading back to our room for a nap.  Then commenced inevitable the post-wedding crash.  We slept for an hour in what I will dub a very serious nap before getting dressed to go see the ocean at night.  We had walked on the cold sand for a few minutes when I decided to record the sound of the ocean’s waves and Sam decided that I needed to dip my toes in the ocean.  Unfortunately, in one of those “of course” moments, a larger than normal wave took us by surprise and soaked us. (Thanks, Hurricane Igor.) Check out the video below. Don't think your computer is screwed up.  It was night time and we weren't carrying a light.  So the screen is black.  I was trying to capture the sounds of the waves and then. . . 

Sopping wet and sandy, we walked back to the B&B to clean up and sleep until just before sunrise.  Neither of us had ever seen the sun rise over the ocean before, so we got of at 6:15 and walked down to the beach to catch the show.  It was breezy and cool, but beautiful and I am so glad we were able to take it all in.  We went back to the B&B and slept for another hour and a half before going down to Chef Angie’s breakfast of organic yogurt, fresh fruit, homemade granola, steel cut oats, banana and black walnut muffins, sweet potato biscuits, veggie sausage, and scrambled eggs.  I wanted to bring Chef Angie back to DC with me.  She is amazing. 

We needed to get on the road around 10:30 am to get to NYC on time, so we showered, packed up our stuff, and hit the road for the three and a half hour drive to Riverside Drive.

More pictures of Delaware!

The host of the post-wedding crash
Salt Water Taffy!
The beach - I like the submarine-like sandcastle
Dogfish Head 120 on tap! - 2 oz is about all you need
Fried pickles, Punkin Ale for Rach, and 75 Minute IPA for Sam
Dogfish Head Brewpub in B&W
A little girl asked if she could take our picture - adorable!
The start to our walk on the beach

Thursday, September 16, 2010

1 Days - Waiting for the Team

Wedding adrenaline is slightly annoying.  Mostly at 5:30 am when you can't fall back asleep.  So today, I walked around the dog park in front of our building from 6 am to 7 am.  Now 45 minutes later and everyone is still asleep, which is good because it gives me time to clear my head and make a to do list for the day.  Also, the bridal team will start arriving this morning and we will be running around picking them up and getting all of our wedding business up to the hotel.

Last night, we had our rehearsal with our priest at Our Lady of Lourdes, which went pretty well, but I was definitely nervous that I would forget something Fr. Avella told us that we would need to relay to the bridal party.  Thankfully, our friends, Andrew, Marisa, and Mia, came by to help us and to go through the process, too.  It also gave Mia the opportunity to practice walk/running down the aisle.  She did a very good job!

I'm still a little nervous about relaying all of the wedding to-do's during our rehearsal in the park today because its going to be such a big crowd (35 people).  I don't know if I can keep the attention of 35 people, but I sure as hell am going to try.  I typed up everything that Fr. Avella relayed to us last night and said it out loud to Sam and my parents to make sure I didn't miss anything.  In an ideal world, we can just do a quick run-through in the park with minimal questions and then take some nice group shots with our photographer before heading to dinner.  Dinner will go til around 8 or 9 pm.  I hope to have the most delicious crab cake ever.  :-)  We plan on going out for drinks after the rehearsal dinner, but I may call it an early night. The 4-5 hours of sleep a night for the past week have made me a tired bride and I was informed I need to sparkle tomorrow. ;-)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

3 Days - OK, I'm excited!

It's official.  I'm excited for the wedding now.  I turned in my draft this afternoon and my supervisor said I could go home. I wish I could describe it, but as soon as she said those words, a serious wave of adrenaline came over me and I could not wait to get the show on the road.

This past week, I lacked a lot of the enthusiasm that hit me this afternoon.  I had gotten phone call after phone call asking me how excited I am about this Friday.  I felt like I needed to keep feigning excitement, like Miranda on S&TC when she found out she was having a baby boy - "A BOY!"  Don't get me wrong.  I can't wait to be married.  This day has been a long time coming, but the work that has needed to be done at work and at home has sapped a lot of my energy and enthusiasm.  I hope people weren't concerned with my lack of "I CAN'T WAIT!" but I was more concerned at the time in making sure I had enough chocolate truffles for our wedding guests and ensuring that my objective drafts at work were in the best condition they could be in before I leave for our honeymoon for two weeks.  But today the work ended and the truffles are made.  There are a few small things that still need to be done, but they are little and will be finished.  I can finally sit back and bask in marrying Sam.  

3 Days - The Non-Wedding Dream - The Road Back to Normalcy

I have been waking up a lot recently with dreams about the wedding and what can go wrong and it puts me in a weird, somewhat anxious, wedding planning-focused place. I wouldn't recommend starting your day with those kinds of feeling.

Today was a different story, though! Today, I woke up to a dream about going to dinner with a friend and then going to Ithaca to speak to one of my professors about statistical analysis. I felt refreshed and a little nerdy, and I loved every moment of it!  I think this means my sub-conscious is making the shift away from the wedding and back to my normal, nerdy life and that is awesome!

I am working hard to be in the moment for the wedding and to relish the coming together of our family and friends and making the ultimate commitment to Sam.  I'd be sad if I got so caught up in the stress of the day that before I knew it, our wedding would be over and I wouldn't remember a thing. So my focus the next three days is to take each moment in and focus on why we're all coming together.  Then I get to look forward to the future. There are so many good things that will happen after the wedding that we get to look forward to. On Sunday we leave for our honeymoon, a break we have been craving for over a year, but more importantly, I am excited for the day that Sam and I get home from work and we make a delicious dinner (something I haven't done in ages), go for a long walk, and watch a movie or a football game before going to bed. . .you know, normal things.  Soon, my friends, we'll be there!