I got married in 2017, so I am going on my fifth year anniversary which means, yeah! But there is another wedding coming up on the horizon. And as you recall there were some reservations about the style we wanted. Being more the hands-on outdoorsy type the wedding we held reflected that-nature, some of the people on Insta called it rustic back then, but I am not sure that really fit. I am that way, square peg in a round hole, or whatever. I wanted simple, affordable, and fun. You can actually have all three.
As you know my sister got married in '97, that lasted until around '00, at which time they separated. Then a few years after that she got fully divorced. Her first wedding cost our father close to $15,000, he half joked that he had to go into debt, the truth was that he actually did. Money wasted in my opinion. When she found Mr. Right 2.0 it was different, she paid for it all herself, less extravagant than the first, but still costly. They got divorced at the start of the pandemic. I think that that was the final nail in a shaky coffin. Now she is taking her third trip down the aisle soon. She and my BiL had their first child was born at the end of last year. My sister would be married for twenty years this coming Fall.
She and her fiancee are playing for the wedding together, they both earn enough, but they have both been married before so they want it small and intimate. My sister doesn't do affordable very well, but it will likely cost less than her last one.
Now I am being asked to be the maid-of-honor. Something that I have done for friends before, but never for my sister.
At first I was skeptical, but then the idea grew on my, a little bit at least. Planning a wedding is hard enough as it is, but planning one with your siblings can be even more challenging.
So if you ask me where I am now, my sister and I are in the process of planning her dream eucalyptus-themed wedding, and there have been plenty of ups and downs along the way. I posted last week that she wasn't really sure what she wanted. And that it true to this day, but eucalyptus seems to be the hot trend now and that is what she wants.
The invitations for the wedding were really the thing that added the much needed corner stone for the theme. I understand that as the maid-of-honor for my sister’s wedding, I have a huge responsibility on my shoulders (though I think it should be less since this is the third time). When we set out to find the right-for lack of a better word,something-for her wedding the outlook was bleak, she loves everything that is luxurious, expensive, and dare I say shiny. At some point it became clear that we weren't going to get very far so I suggested that we set things in motion by choosing the wedding invitations. The date was set for sometime so we could get them anytime we wanted. I hoped that they would speak to her when she found the perfect eucalyptus-themed invitations that would set the tone of her special day. After hours of searching and comparing dozens (or hundreds, I lost count) of options, we finally landed on a design that was perfect.
I knew that she wanted the invitation to be elegant yet simple. Then we found one with classic shades of green which were featured the eucalyptus in the design gave it eye-catching charm with out being overwhelming. To add texture and depth to the invitation, we-alright, the designer-choose to incorporate various shades of green mixed with hints of grays and blues to give it an earthy feel. In addition to showcasing my sister’s love for nature, these colors also served as an ode to her favorite color – blue!
The final product was absolutely stunning. Though I was told that I was not allowed to share her invitation under any circumstances, I managed to find a similar invitation, which I am allowed to share. As you can see with its classic fonts and intricate details like die cuts and raised ink, each invitation is truly one-of-a-kind. My sister was overjoyed at the finished product – she couldn’t wait to send them out and start planning her big day!
It took me quite some time to find the perfect invites, but when I finally did it was all worth it! Not only did my sister get exactly what she wanted, it allowed her to start making plans for the rest of the wedding as well. Also, I would be lying if I said that I didn't get to have a fun project that made me feel like we were moving forward with wedding planning process!
Speaking of which, here’s what we’re doing to make it all come together!
Our Venue: A Sisterly Struggle
You are tasked with finding the ideal venue for the celebration as part of the wedding planning process. We had conflicting ideas about where the ceremony should be held for her eucalyptus-themed wedding: she wanted an outdoor setting (something she hadn't had before, but absolutely wanted), while I preferred something inside due to potential weather issues.
We debated the advantages and disadvantages of both options before settling on a venue that provided both. We could hold the ceremony outside to take advantage of the beautiful scenery, but we could also move the event inside if the weather turned bad. This option provided us with the best of both worlds, allowing us to have our dream eucalyptus-themed wedding.
Wedding planning can be a stressful process, but my sister and I were able to find a solution that worked for us thanks to a venue that offers both indoor and outdoor options. We both agreed that this was the best way to ensure that we could celebrate her special day without being concerned about the possibility of inclement weather. Based on the time of year they are celebrating, this is most likely.
Finally, we were able to locate the ideal location for my sister's eucalyptus-themed wedding. We were able to create a beautiful and memorable wedding experience with the help of our venue, which we will both remember for years to come.
Our Decor: Creating a Cohesive Look
When my sister announced that she would be walking down the aisle for the third time, there was no doubt in anyone's mind that the wedding would be nothing short of spectacular. As the maid of honor, it was my responsibility to select accessories for the wedding that would unify the theme. We were drawn to the idea of a eucalyptus-themed wedding after finding the perfect invitation.
We'll use eucalyptus garlands to decorate the chairs at the ceremony and to make bouquets for the bridesmaids and groomsmen. Eucalyptus will also be used in the centerpieces at each table during the reception.
We were able to create a cohesive look that tied all of the elements together by using eucalyptus throughout the wedding. It's a really lovely color.
Food & Drink: Food (Not Really) Fit for a Koala
With the eucalyptus-themed wedding, we have been busy selecting the food and drinks to be served at the reception. Deciding what to serve was a challenge, but in the end we compromised and chose a combination of traditional favorites like steak and chicken, as well as some unique dishes like stuffed mushrooms and roasted vegetables. She
My sister wanted her favorite wine served at every table, while I suggested having some specialty cocktails in addition to beer and wine options. To meet in the middle, we decided on having three signature cocktails themed after eucalyptus. They are sure to be a hit with everyone in attendance and will add to the special atmosphere of the wedding.
We're certain her guests will have a wonderful time enjoying the delicacies and drinks at the eucalyptus-themed wedding.
Overall, everything is coming together for what is sure to be an unforgettable experience. To be honest, planning her dream wedding has been an incredible experience so far – full of laughter, tears and lots of compromises (oddly enough most of them have been mine)! We can’t wait until this all comes together in just over two months from now! While I know that this isn't the main focus on my site, that being cryptids, if you have any thoughts or advice regarding her eucalyptus-themed wedding plans (or if you have any tips from your own experiences!) then please let me know – I would love to hear them!
SO it became official a while ago, but I wasn't really sure that I wanted to share it on the site, since the topic clashes a little bit with the direction I am planning on taking it in now. But being the maid-of-honor for my sister's third wedding has been a challenging experience thus far. From the start, my sister was blissfully indecisive about every aspect of her wedding, she likes it luxurious and extravagant, ut she and my BiL will be going into this a little more sane than she did her first one which as I have shared before cost my dad a sizable sum.
As it stands we have made some headway, at least in the form of the wedding color scheme, she is thinking green, maybe a little blue, her two favorite colors, after black of course but her first one was a strictly black tie event. In all seriousness though, from the venue to the dress, my sister can't seem to make a decision to save her life. Despite the initial difficulty, it has been, hum, a joy to help my sister plan her special day.
The wedding dress was the first challenge we faced. My sister wanted a beautiful form fitting gown, something unique and feminine with a bit of sparkle. This was more challanging than it sounds since she just gave birth to their first child, and she was really critical. After trying on dozens of dresses, she finally found the one that made her feel beautiful. She chose a white satin dress with lace and beading detail, they all sort of look like that I know, but she was happy.
The hardest part of planning my sister's wedding was trying to please everyone, BiL has been a dream, he just wants her to be happy, but his mother has been another story. With her being married for the third time, there were a lot of opinions about the wedding. Yet, she still feels the need to make sure everyone was happy with the decisions we have made thus far. In the end, we will manage to get it done, but I wish she would be a little more decisive when it comes to the whole thing.
To be completely honset it has been stressful. But I am proud and honored to have been chosen as my sister's maid-of-honor. This is actually the first time I have done it for her. And of course I wish her all the best for her future, so making sure everything is perfect is a major priority for me as well. I want to look back at my sister's wedding and see it for what it was a beautiful event that I was happy to have been a part of. Despite the challenges of indecisiveness and conflicting opinions, we will hopefully be able to plan an intimate and memorable event that will also be her true happily ever after.
When this is all said and done I will be glad to go back to Bigfoot and company. :)
Coming back to write for my blog after such an extended hiatus is both exciting and daunting. Things have been so busy the last years, as you yourself surely knows, and I really don't want to make those sad years into a topic today. But I guess my topic will, actually be just that in a round about way. "I'm back" and with that Welcome Back!
Today I am going to be writing about two things, the first one is picking up the digital pen again and the other is something that has really become dear to my heart. That will take up the majority of today's time, that is work-life balance. You see the last years have shown me personally that there are more important things in life. Through the imposed family time I realized just how much I was missing out on. But, regardless of that it was hard to achieve a true balance once I returned to work. But enough of that for now.
When I decided it was time to breathe new life into my site I hadn't realized how much time had really gone by, it was intimidating, the few of you who followed my musings surely have left for greener pastures and I contemplated just leaving it all be. But I wanted to write again, I needed to write. So I chose to go ahead with my plan. On the one hand, you're eager to get back into writing, to channel your creativity and create something new. On the other hand, restarting after such a long break can be intimidating. If this sounds familiar, don't worry; there are plenty of things you can do to ease your return to blogging.
I read up on getting back into the flow when I decided it was time. As it seems, this is actually a pretty come thing. So today I will share a bit of that with you to maybe encourage your to stretch your fingers and share your thoughts.
First and foremost, spend some time reconnecting with your audience. They may have grown or changed since the last time you posted, depending on how long you've been gone. Before you begin writing your next post, make sure you understand who they are now and what type of content would be most appealing to them. Once you've determined who is reading your blog, create content that speaks to their interests and needs. This will help ensure that your post resonates with them and that you don't miss out on engagement opportunities when you return from the break.
Consider spending some time re-familiarizing yourself with whatever blogging platform or CMS you use if you haven't logged in in a while (like me)! I use one called Bludit which my BiL suggested because it is easy to use and the learning curve it really not that steep to begin with. Whichever one you are using it is time to refresh your memory on any changes or new features so that everything feels more at ease when you start working. Actually I just opened up a new post and started typing, but I was always the type of person to jump right in.
Finally, try not to be too concerned with posting perfect content right away; instead, focus on having fun creating something new! Writing is a creative process that takes practice to master, so don't expect instant gratification when returning after a long absence. It may take some time for things to click again, but they will - just keep at it and good luck!
The Work/Life Balancing Act
To be completely honest, this post, the one that you are reading right now, was going to be my first contribution to the site after almost two years, but that felt somehow wrong. Like I was cheating myself a little bit. I needed to ease into the process, have some fun, and just get a feel for it. Then I realized that they shared very much the same topic with one another and I decided to just go with it. Both are about how life has a way of changing even the best plans (I'm big on planning). And in our hectic lives, finding quality time to spend together as a family is becoming increasingly difficult. With longer working hours and more distractions, it can be difficult for families to connect. We all understand how important it is to prioritize our families, but having a successful professional life may require you to sacrifice some of your family time.
Here are some advantages and disadvantages of achieving work-life balance:
- Flexible work hours: Many employers now provide flexible work schedules so that employees can easily adjust their work commitments to accommodate family activities.
- More quality time spent with family: Balancing your professional and personal lives will allow you to make the most of the time you spend together.
- Better physical and mental health: Taking frequent breaks from work can help reduce stress and improve overall well-being.
- Increased work productivity: When you spend more quality time with your family, you'll have more energy to devote to work tasks and projects.
- Limited career advancement opportunities: Taking frequent breaks or changing your schedule may limit future career advancement opportunities.
- Increased financial stress: Choosing shorter working hours may result in less money coming in, putting additional strain on other areas of life such as paying bills or taking vacations together.
- Overworking yourself: It is easy to become so caught up in balancing everything that you end up overworking yourself in both personal and professional roles. It's critical not to put too much pressure on yourself to be perfect all of the time!
Finding a good balance between professional success and giving quality time and attention to your family should be viewed as an achievable goal requiring dedication, compromise, and understanding from all parties involved! This is going to be something that I plan to revisit occasionally here going forward. For one, it is something that needs to be reaffirmed in my life from time to time, and on the other hand it is something that we should all at least consider now and then. Are we really as well balanced as we think? Could be do better? I know that I can.
I work hard and my career is very important to me. Does that mean that I don't have enough time for my family? Does it mean that I don't have a chance to follow my interests? No, not at all. It just means that I have a harder time finding a place for those interests.
I work very hard. But at the same time I love my job and I find that it fulfills me in the same way that my family life fulfills me.
While I have been told that I work more than some people in my company I can say from personal observation that I also work less than others. Productivity and success in the company is not improved or impacted for those who work less or those that work more. For me, productivity, operates on the ability to plan. I use up every moment I have for tasks that need to be accomplished. Both at work and at home I try to work as efficiently as I can.
This is method to also maximize free time.
You see I don't work non-stop. I set time aside at home just as if I was scheduling tasks at work.
One example that I could use would be email. Yes I still use email. It works for me and I feel less hassled by it than by text etc. because I can actually use full sentences. Anyway, I check and reply to email first thing in the morning. This gives me a chance to focus on the specifics of the email throughout the day.
If I didn't I would be frantically trying to handle the "problems" as they come in. And that means in off hours as well.
As a parent and wife I have the obligation to protect my family and that means from my job as well. The thought of having my children to grow up and only remember me sitting at a desk or at the kitchen table buried under work is heartbreaking image.
That said I haven't always succeeded in juggling everything. And it can get tricky at times. But one setback doesn't need to derail you.
That is the trick to success as much in your professional life as in your personal.
What is life if not the valuable time that we spend with our families? I don't know what people are thinking when they say they wish they could spend more time in the office.
The truth is that the majority of people that spend their lives in their office are not that productive to begin with. I have seen this pattern time and time again. On top of that they are rarely prepared to demonstrate what they've done to be a productive part of the team. And yet, these are the same people that feel it is in their best interest to complain if you do your work and leave.
It's family time!
I am thirty-six years old. And my time is divided between work in a high stress profession 8 hrs a day, five days a week and I'm married with a DH and children just as darling.
Last year I got a promotion which increased our income but also my workload/responsibilities. Fast forward a year and we our expecting out third little bundle of joy.
And the question I have been asking myself is: "will I self-destruct?" And for the life of me the only way that I see to get it done is through some careful/creative planning. Something that I enjoy doing anyway. The feasibility that I can maintain my current position is a little shaky now.
Making A Plan
Making a plan is crucial, whether is is a family plan, a work plan, or a life plan. The more granular and specific you can make it to a specific activity the better. As it stands I
Right now I would have a little bit of maternity leave which will make the first weeks easier, however, when I return to work I will have to hit the ground running. I am not confident that that will - in the long run - be that easy.
As I said before, my work is manageable now because I work it around a pretty tight schedule that is well worth the time that I put into it. My co-workers will have their own ideas of priority and things will be done to fit them. As it should be. However, I will have to put things back into order so that they work for me. And that is where my concerns come from.
So how do I plan so meticulously? What sort of magic or app do I use?
I don't do any of that. I grab a piece of paper, just your standard printer paper, and start blocking things out.
First I start by writing down the days of the week. Next I will write down what needs to be done on a daily basis to be finished for the week. My plan incorporates both professional and personal so I know what will be neglected if I miss one of my points. And then I do everything in my power to stick to the plan.
In most cases I will work through lunch breaks and most breaks to get a little extra time so that I can get everything done.
I have been making plans since my final year of high school.
And I have no intention of stopping.