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Bride Blogging | Manolo for the Brides - Part 3
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Ask NtB Anything: The Answers!

Last month, I invited y’all to ask me anything and you did. Sorry it’s taken me so long to answer! It’s been a busy summer, but I finally found a free moment today and did not want to disappoint. Enjoy!

You asked, I answered!

Auntie M
So the last time I saw you was in NYC with a bunch of drunken nuts. I’m so glad to have reconnected, and I’m glad you asked us to ask. I’ve been wondering: How *did* Genus become NtB and a wedding expert?

Oh, it’s a silly little story, and a none too exciting one, if I’m honest about it. I’d like to say that my enormous talent and wit attracted scads of attention, and so the wedding industry practically begged me to join up. But the reality is that I set up a little personal blog just to complain that The Beard was dragging his feet on the whole marriage issue. A few comments on the Manolo’s Shoe Blog later, and he asked me to come on board to head up his bridal blog. As for expertise, that came later, along with writing a book and lots of other nice things like freebies and invitations to events and friendships (online and offline) with tons of amazing people.

Do you think there’s any way to plan a $5,000 wedding any more? Even small numbers doing things on the fly, it’s only seeming doable if we do it at the court house and go directly home for bologna sammies afterward. Am I being unrealistic? ALSO: What’s your favorite color? Just ’cause I wanted to throw an easy one in there after that doozy. Ooh! And: what’s your dream honeymoon locale?

Let’s get the easy ones out of the way first: my favorite color is black and my dream honeymoon would probably be an African photo safari. Mainly because it’s the one destination I can think of that’s absolutely out of my price range at the present time and is simply a no-go scheduling wise at the moment.

As for the $5,000 wedding, I do think they’re still possible, but that is provided you have the time, the DIY skills, and the steely determination to pull it all off. Knowing what you want – and I mean exactly what you want – and not having caviar dreams on a Carvel budget can also make a $5,000 wedding a reality. The downside of the $5,000 that is more than just a backyard party is that it takes a lot of work.

Think wedding planning is stressful when your main to-dos involve choosing between option X and option Y? Imagine staying up long into the night to decoupage labels onto the mason jars you spent three weekends thrifting and trying to get your printer to stop eating your homemade labels. Then imagine doing that over and over again, just with different projects and sets of problems. I know, I know… there are people out there for whom the thought of designing and making every tiny part of a wedding sounds like heaven. I just happen to not be one of those people (though sometimes I secretly wish I was).

Okay, I’ll bite: how many cups of coffee do you drink in an average day? Regular Joe, Rocket Fuel, or the Dreaded Unleaded? Cream? Sugar? Unleaded sweetener? Black like the remnants of my tattered soul? What? I’m a Virgo! I’m all about the details.

Oh, coffee… father, mother, secret lover. If I take you to mean standard mugs, probably between 7 and 10 before lunch. Lately I’ve been trying to cut out coffee in the p.m. hours, simply because I feel that water leaves me feeling more hydrated and energetic. As for flavor and strength preferences, when it comes to typical American coffee I go for the Regular Joe and I like it black like the remnants of your tattered soul, yes. 😉

I have always wondered why you call him The Beard. I certainly have my suspicions, but I’d like to know the real reason. Also, is Paloma a family name because it is beautiful. I really like it.

I call The Beard “The Beard” simply because way back in the day when I started blogging about how my boyfriend didn’t want to get married and how that made him a big jerkface, keeping things anonymous felt like the way to go. Also, he has a beard.

As for Paloma, it’s not a family name – we’re not even Spanish! The reality is so boring. It was just the only name we came across that we both liked. Up until Paloma, we’d get close but were never on the same page. For example, I liked Chloe, he liked Zoe. He liked the name Meredith, and I said “No naming our baby after your exes, thanks.” That sort of thing. However, what’s funny is that Paloma was almost born in Spain. We were back for about a week and a half when I went into premature labor!

What’s your parenting style? What do you want most for your daughter as she grows up? How will you help her achieve it?

That’s a toughie! I like to call myself a hands-off dictator with a penchant for free-range kids. Mostly, I let La Paloma lead the way – particularly when it comes to developmental tasks like learning to use the potty or eating new foods. Basically, I don’t like to structure her world too much because I don’t like to imbue my own with too much structure, and soon enough she’ll be operating within the confines of the school day and then the work day. In our household we don’t make a lot of rules for rules’ sake. BUT when it comes to safety and health and basic courtesy and so on, I rule the roost. When it’s important,
I don’t hesitate to gently enforce that I get the final say, but I also will explain – over and over – why I make the rules I do.

I guess what I want most for La Paloma in the future is that she DOES what makes her happy and brings her satisfaction. Too many people have dreams that they never pursue, and I think that is the cause of a lot of unhappiness in adults. Pursuing dreams and passions is hard in that it usually takes a lot of DOING. Currently, La Paloma’s big dreams involve figuring out how to get people to give her chocolate, so at the moment, I am just trying to lead by example even though she doesn’t really understand what I’m doing most of the time. Still, she seems me engaging in a wide variety of activities, some of which I let her help with. As she gets older and her dreams get a bit more complex, I will do whatever is in my power to expose her to the wider world of those dreams through education, exposure to the professional side of her dreams, encouragement, and so on.

How many pairs of shoes and boots are in your closet?


Uncle Fester
If you are driving your car at the speed of light and you turn on the headlights, what happens? How old should a highway be before you tell it that it’s adopted?

Awesome questions, Uncle Fester! For the first, nothing since achieving light speed travel is impossible. But traveling at speeds at fraction away from the speed of light? Since the speed of light is constant for any inertial observer, I assume the headlights would simply operate normally.

And for the second, I think that’s okay to start offering up age-appropriate materials to your adopted highway – picture books, for example – whenever you feel your highway is developmentally ready for that kind of information.

Now’s Your Chance: Ask NtB Anything

It has been an extra super rough month at my house, with everyone getting sick over and over, lots of late nights for The Beard and thus for me, and plenty of toddler tantrums, plus prepping for travel and then actual travel. In fact, I’m writing this from the distant past, and when you read it, I’ll be not in my normal home base of the northeastern U.S., but rather in my maternal family’s home base of northern Germany. How’s that for a change? If you’ve been thinking my posts have been light on text and light on photos, now you know why. Today’s post? No exception. Things are actually going to get lighter here in the hope that things will get heavier in the comments. Perhaps I should explain myself.

Ever wonder about me? Here’s me:

This is Christa aka Never teh Bride. Now you know.

Since I am always curious about my favorite bloggers, I thought that some of you might be curious about me. That is, if I may be so presumptuous. Bride blogging and blogging about weddings tends to focus on the outward, not the inward, so I’m usually not writing about myself and my own. But that’s going to change, at least in one upcoming post, because I’m opening myself up to YOUR QUESTIONS. Anything you’re curious about. How I got into blogging, for example. How I started making money doing it. Why I call The Beard “The Beard”. Writing a book. My dress size, favorite ice cream flavor, or how many cups of coffee I drink in a day. Or go the other way, and hit me with some wedding planning doozies.

What’s off limits? Pretty much nothing that falls outside of the underpants and bedroom zone. No kidding – I’m sure you can figure out a way to drag me into TMI territory. (It’s really not that hard.)

Go ahead, ask me your questions and I’ll tell you no lies! I figure I’ll keep comments open until the 25th or so, by which time I’ll be back in the US and surely in a open and earnest kind of mood. Look for the follow up sometime around then!

Happy Valentine’s Day from Manolo for the Brides!

As always, on what is for some – and hopefully for YOU – a most romantic 24-hour period, we want to say Happy Valentine’s Day! If today is the day that your darling pops the question or if you’ll be saying your vows in one year’s time, do let us know in the comments. (And I should add a big happy birthday to all the folks who, like La Paloma, were born on this lovely, lovely day!)

From Us to You: Gorgeous New Year’s Eve Wishes from Manolo for the Brides!

We hope that all our lovely brides, former brides, grooms, and former grooms have a night to remember on this, the last day of 2010!

Happy Hanukkah from Manolo for the Brides!

To all our Jewish brides and brides-to-be out there, we’d like to say: Chag Urim Sameach!

Happy Thanksgiving From Manolo for the Brides!

From all of us here at Manolo for the Brides, may you and yours have a happy Thanksgiving with lots of lovely food and family and fun times.

Image via

New Email Address For Manolo For the Brides!

ido by christa terry

Spam sucks whether it’s in the comments (where we try to kill it as fast as we can) or in email inboxes, where it makes it less likely we’ll get your awesome missives. Unfortunately that describes Christa Terry aka Never teh Bride’s current inbox to a T, forcing her to make up a whole new email address to ensure that she gets your emails about weddings, wedding etiquette, wedding dresses, and more. So update your address books, please, and never hesitate to send along a tip or a question!

THE DEETS: Christa can now be found at Manolobrides@gmail.com

(Image via, obviously)

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