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Cake tasted, Bride and Groom Approved

11 Oct

We went cake tasting this weekend. I’m sure you know I was looking forward to this — to getting to the actual sweets of our wedding. And it was so worth the wait.

We went to Baked, a fabulous little bakery in Red Hook, Brooklyn. For our tasting, we were given 10 amazing cupcakes to try their vast array of amazing cake and buttercream combinations. I can’t even begin to gush enough about the goods. You have to try the Coconut Cream, Passion Fruit, and Aunt Sassy’s Pistachio Surprise cakes.

We thought going in that we would want a red velvet cake at our wedding, and of course that was one of the reasons we wanted to try Baked — they have a fantastic one: the Red Hook Red Hot.

Red Velvet Cake

The Red Hook Red Hot from Baked, photo from

This is a red velvet cake with a hint of valrhona cocoa, layered and topped with cinnamon buttercream. And the little red hot candies add such a spicy touch! We’re going to have  three tiers of this at our wedding, with a gorgeous red berry branch design running up it — and the berries will be red hots!

But it doesn’t end there! We fell in love with another amazing cake at the tasting: the Sweet & Salty. I took one bit and just about swooned. The Sweets did, too.

Sweet & Salty chocolate cake, Baked NYC

Sweet & Salty, Baked. Photo from

As Baked says: “This cake has won many awards and many hearts. Dark chocolate cake infused with a salty caramel, caramel chocolate ganache and topped with fleur de sel.”  Seriously the most grown-up and delicious and special cake I’ve ever eaten. We’ll have one of these at the wedding, too. Couldn’t resist. They sent us home with an extra cupcake of this one, which I plan to savor for dessert tonight. (If the Sweets doesn’t get it first.)

So, New Yorkers, I send you to Baked. Go and get the goodies. Or if you can’t go to them, they’ll come to you:



24 Aug

This just a quick post to remind everyone, including myself, that wedding planning is not all fun and joy. Sometimes it sucks. Like, really. It can also be very stressful, trying, testing, nightmare and sleepless-night inducing. Nothing’s perfect.

Here’s what I’m figuring out, though: You can’t be passive in the process and expect to feel in control. Neither can you account for every last thing. And if you don’t know what you want, you can’t wait for someone else to tell you.  I can’t tell you how frustrating that is, whichever side of the coin you’re on at the moment.

But I can get one of these at lunch and try to feel better.

sweet treat

(image from because I didn’t bother to take a picture of mine before I ate it.)

I’ll get back to happy wedding planning tomorrow.

The Reverend

15 Aug

See that smiling man waiting at the end of the aisle?

Dad at the end of the aisle

That’s the man who will officiate my wedding ceremony — though officiate seems like an inadequate word. Not “marry us,” either, since Sweets and I will be marrying each other. That smiling man, though, will be smiling at me and Sweets when we stand in front of our family and friends and join our lives. He will lead us as we make our vows, and he is someone who has led me through all of my life — he’s my Dad.

That’s right, Sweets and I have asked Reverend Dad to marry us (for lack of a better word)!

I freely admit that I struggled for a long time with this decision. All of my life my father has been marrying people — he’s a minister, after all, and he’s presided over many family weddings, and family friends and church members, friends of my siblings, and countless other couples beginning their married lives. But somehow I never got around to thinking about what my wedding would be — what it would be like if my father were to be the minister at my wedding. I always imagined he’d be my “Dad” at my wedding, and I didn’t get any further.

And so when Sweets and I decided to get married, I realized suddenly that someone would need to marry us, but I didn’t know if it would be Dad. I asked around the family, wondering what my sister and my brother thought — if they’d ever imagined Dad would do their weddings one day, or if they thought he really wanted to marry us.  I asked Sweets if he had feelings about who should marry us. He said he knew it meant more to me than him, and he’d be fine with whatever choice I made. And eventually, Dad said to me that he’d be fine with whatever I wanted — that it was my wedding and he’d be there for me in whatever way I wanted.

And then when Sweets and I decided on a venue (more on that when we’ve signed a contract!), I really started to imagine what my wedding ceremony would be like. And I realized that I couldn’t imagine anyone but Dad standing in front of Sweets and me, leading us in making our vows.

When I finally asked him earlier this week, he pounced in with a “YES! I would love to!” before I could even finish the request. And I think he understood what had kept me from asking him sooner. “Sarah,” he said, “I don’t think we’ll be missing out on the Father-Daughter thing in any way on your wedding day. You don’t need me to walk you down the aisle.  And I don’t believe in all that ‘the father giving the daughter away’ stuff — you and George are giving yourselves to each other.”

So, I’ll walk toward Sweets and my Dad, maybe with my strong and beautiful mother walking at my side. I know it will be very special and emotional and meaningful for all of us.

Ali and Mitch and Reverend Dad, July 23, 2010

And congrats and happy wishes to Ali and Mitch, the latest couple to marry each other in front of my Dad.

Photos by Stacia Photos

I’m not shirking work

4 Aug

I read a statistic somewhere that most women do the majority of their wedding planning at work. I’m not going to lie — I’m doing some planning at work. But I think I’m being responsible and fair to my employer.

I’m not a crazy wedding-planner girl yet, not calling all the vendors to make sure they know every last detail of my wishes (I’ve sat next to that girl), and I’m not NOT doing my job (I’ve met her, too), but I’ll admit I take frequent “breaks” to look at twitter or check that favorite blog or search for more ideas about what the heck kind of dress I want to wear, or research that crazy favor idea I had. But work is so important, and I’m dedicated to getting it done. Just so you know.

But the honest truth is I spend more time than I should scouring the internet for wedding stuff.  And I’m trying to take care it doesn’t get out of control. Brides, how do you keep balance in your work/planning lives?

do I or don’t I?

23 Jul

So if you’ve noticed, we don’t have a venue just yet. (But wish me luck — we’re looking at something this afternoon!) And so far the only thing I’ve bought for the wedding has been postage. And I’m halfway there on one other little detail. I haven’t been dress shopping yet. I don’t know for sure who is marrying us (that’s a post for another day). But I think I know what I want to be wearing on my FEET on my wedding day.

red ruffle shoes

A thing of beauty. Heel not too high so I can dance all night. Lovely little ruffle. Red.

Dare I order early?

Edited to add: I want to rock the red shoes like this:

Wedding purchases have begun!

14 Jul

I recently spent my first dime of the wedding budget. Okay, it was more than a dime. But I did it early so maybe it wouldn’t FEEL like the money was coming out of the budget. But all my posts, below, about the save-the-dates I want to create, got me thinking about stamps. I contemplated the assorted, vintage look that’s so beautiful and popular on the blogs (this seller on Etsy is great!), but I couldn’t justify the extra cost to myself (or to Sweets). So I was mousing around the USPS online, and found these lovely things: 

Abstract Expressionists stamps

different, lovely, and they even feature the color red!


you can get them here at

Paintings featured: 

The Golden Wall (1961) — Hans Hofmann (1880–1966)
Romanesque Façade (1949) — Adolph Gottlieb (1903–1974)
Orange and Yellow (1956) — Mark Rothko (1903–1970)
The Liver Is the Cock’s Comb (1944) — Arshile Gorky (1904–1948)
1948–C (1948) — Clyfford Still (1904–1980)
Asheville (1948) — Willem de Kooning (1904–1997)
Achilles (1952) — Barnett Newman (1905–1970)
Convergence (1952) — Jackson Pollock (1912–1956)
Elegy to the Spanish Republic No. 34 (1953–1954) — Robert Motherwell (1915–1991)
La Grande Vallée 0 (1983) — Joan Mitchell (1925–1992) 

Slow and steady, but I’m getting started! Hold on to your hats when it’s time for me to order other paper goods!

grumpy wedding planner girl

29 Jun

I’ve been feeling a little overwhelmed this past week or so, trying to find venues and vendors to create the wedding that the Sweets I want. I’m beginning to think this wedding planning thing is no picnic…

picnic wedding reception

Photography – Catie Ronquillo Photography

oh, wait — I mean, no day at the beach

Beach wedding

Photography: Comfort Studio

no, it’s not all fun and games!

scrabble wedding photo

Photo by Jagger Photography

but you can’t have your cake and eat it too!

Thiebaud Wedding Cakes

Photography: Kate Harrison

Shoot. I can’t stay grumpy. I need to keep reminding myself that for every moment of frustration and misery trying to pull together a wedding that will be lovely and wonderful, I’ll have that wedding day, and a lifetime of happiness. Wedding planning may not be all roses (because there are so many other flowers out there!) but all we need is love (and wonderful wedding blogs like the ones featured here).

Thanks, lovely wedding bloggers!

Picnic Wedding: The Sweetest Occasion, Games Wedding: Inspired by This, Beach Wedding: Once Wed, Cakes: Green Wedding Shoes