Monday, December 31, 2007

Bridal Party and Groomsmen Party Announced!

When I got engaged, I was mistakenly under the impression that it would be easy to put together my bridal party. So, I got started right away . . . and then got stuck. I had to choose a Maid of Honor, and we hadn't decided on the size of the parties because Terinati wasn't sure who of his friends would even be able to come. One person, who was really important to me I couldn't even get a hold of, even after achieving the "impossible." Another person who I had been considering for Maid of Honor guilted me, when I had only barely gotten engaged and was already enough of a rut that I really didn't need that.

So, for a long time, I wracked my mind, and then kind of stepped back and away from it because it's a hard choice that affects my friends as much as it does me, in the end, and Terinati was very stressed out with his career change and needed me more.

Then, I realized it was almost time to book places, because they'll disappear quick out here, and I still hadn't figured out a party. In fact, we hadn't really decided solidly on anything. People need to know if they're needed ahead of time, so they can plan financially. I'm not stupid; most of my friends are just as poor, if not more so, than I am. And, I felt bad because it seemed like everyone had too much going on in their lives for me to even ask them to be my bridesmaids, let alone my Maid of Honor. Children to take care of for some, deaths in the family for others, and horrible crushing relationships . . . discovering the truth about life, career changes . . .

It hit me. What if the friends I had picked out already didn't really want to be bridesmaids because they had too much going on already? It would be okay with me if that were the case, but I doubted they would admit it for fear of being a "bad friend." I wouldn't have thought that. I mean, knowing that you aren't strong enough to be what someone needs when they need them and falling back is one of the most giving things a person can do. But, I knew no one would do it. All my friends are either too nice, or care too much about what I think of them.

The others who I hadn't asked . . . I wasn't sure how much they actually cared about what Terinati's and my dreams were, and perhaps one of our only chances to make them come true, even if only briefly and share that love with all of our friends and family the way we always wanted . . . or if they only cared about having a "Dreamsenshi's Best Friends Photo Op" in my wedding, which it isn't to me at all. :/ Being a bridesmaid or a groomsman takes understanding and patience, especially when the bride and groom are weird people like us. And, the inconvenience of us being so far apart makes the duties thrice as hectic. I needed to know how people felt, but I knew if I asked straight out, I'd get a lie. People, with their good intentions, tend to say what they think I want to hear. Darn it.

So, how to solve a problem like that? Do something outrageous! Get people's emotions boiling! That's how you get the truth out of people. That's right. The quiz was a ruse, and it worked! Granted, being stressed out certainly did help. HAHAHAHA! :/ But, I apologize. Yep, your scores mean absolutely nothing (sorry, Pandamo; good job, though! I'm VERY impressed that you got 16 out of 20! and JesMD! Geez! 19 out of 20, just guessing based on years ago!). What kind of person would I be if I cared how much you could remember? Honestly, I can't remember everything. That's why I have a giant notebook I refer to for my wedding, with my efficient little checklists and pictures and graphs (yes, graphs; I am a Virgo, after all). I mean, that wouldn't be fair.

I thought I would have to do more to get a true answer, but as it turns out, girls are really emotional. I guess I forgot, hanging around Terinati and his friends all the time. And, I got the responses I was looking for right away. I found out who cares, even if they aren't immediately available, and who are opportunists. But, even more, I rediscovered all of my friends. That was kind of shocking!

I didn't think so many people would want to be bridesmaids, either. I mean, I kept everyone in the know about the quiz, but I was surprised when Anna even applied. I didn't think she'd want to get tied up into something that, on the surface, looks insane. As she put it, "That's not how I would have done it." Well, no one would. Bravo for the guts to say it to my face without saying it in a mean way. Also, kudos to Anna for being able to follow instructions. :} She was the only person who sent me a print screen, but I think most people used the link from the main site, not my blog, so what can you do? I should have thought that out a little better, perhaps. Lesson learned about giving instructions; make sure all sources lead to the instructions first, then the task. :}

And, during all this time, I revisited in my mind our pasts, in regards to Terinati's and my relationship. I even went into my fire safe and found something horribly precious that Pandamo and Jenesis and I did together, before we split up to go our various ways; we had each taken the time to write a page of good things we thought about each other. I'm still amused that my hair was on everyone's list. :}

The more I thought about it, the more I realized that I didn't want to exclude anyone who wanted to be included on my special day, because you are all my friends for important reasons, and the fact that you wanted to contribute in some way to my life shows at least a little bit of love, even if a bit diluted by CRAZY/B****. However, I also did see much more clearly the people who really saw and have always seen Terinati and I for who we really are, and that weighed heavily in our choice (that's right; Terinati helped me decide, even though it wasn't a lot of help). And, the real reason the time line was so long was because I wanted to be sure everyone had time to respond and I had time to make sure I wasn't making bad choices that would hurt someone's feelings or be unfair to myself.

So, now that I know you're all dying to know what we decided, I want to state some things straight up. Not everyone can be the Maid of Honor, and I wasn't about to have multiple Maids of Honor. I mean, hello? 2 people won't make the rest feel less left out. 1 is enough. :b Also, the groomsmen party ended up being decided as 1 best man, 3 groomsmen, which meant I had to balance my side to match that. I had been thinking our group would be even smaller than that, and was worried, so this worked out pretty well (if everyone can make it, anyway). So, as you can see, not everyone can be a bridesmaid who wants to be. But, just because you don't have the title doesn't make you less important to me. :b So, I don't want anyone to end reading this blog going, "Oh, Dreamsenshi doesn't love me as much as 'so-and-so', because I'm not the Maid of Honor/Bridesmaid." That's not true. We're just not rich and made up of an endless bounty of friends to balance the sides. It's a wedding, which is a measurement of Terinati's and my love for each other, not the measure of the love for my friends. :/ So, no more beating yourselves up! It's silly! I don't want that, and you shouldn't put yourselves through it. If I'm still your friend after all this time, then you should know you're important to me, because the one thing that has always been true about me is that the moment I think someone is bad for me, I cut them out of my life completely. No looking back, no regrets. That is, unless they do something to redeem themselves. So, if you're still in my life, then I've accepted you already with all of your quirks and imperfections. Feel loved, damn it. :} * hugs all around *

Okay. Everyone ready? Quick! Like a bandaid!! RIP IT OFF!! (er, scroll down really fast, but don't miss the surprises at the end!)

Maid of Honor - Kyriel, AKA Sarah H.

I chose Kyriel to be my Maid of Honor for several reasons, none of which were responsibilities because she doesn't want them. :} heh. I was pleasantly surprised when she took the quiz, and suspect somewhere deep down she does want the role, but doesn't want me to have any crude notions of her being awesome at the role. Being mature enough to admit that up front though really just made me feel more sure.

Kyriel introduced me to Terinati, after having role-played with him online first. Without her, I probably would have never met him (I believe it was fate, but she was fate's conduit, and that's a pretty special role to play in someone's life; I hope I've now finally been able to return the favor for her, though only time will tell). She supported me through my parents' divorce, and helped me steal the key back to our house from Diane so that she would stop stealing things that weren't hers. After years of not even being in touch, she produced a gift that still fills me with awe. Sure, it's just a little DVD, but she may be one of the only people who took my childhood love for this musical seriously. The fact that she went to the trouble of searching for it, without my even asking . . . wow. She was also the only person on my 16th birthday party who actually cared about the plans I had made that went down the drain that night because everyone was more concerned about doing nice things to prove they loved me than what I actually wanted. I do appreciate the good intentions of my friends, but the fact that she was the only one who was there with me throughout the whole night and understood my feelings . . . Time and time again, Kyriel really was there for me and Terinati both, and we never left on bad terms or had glaring, immature fights. She's by far the most genius of all of my friends . . . But ultimately, her detachment from drama and understanding and support, even pushing us together before it was too late for us, because Terinati and I would have never confessed our love for each other and burdened the other with it without knowing how the other felt . . . She's the reason why we're here today. I can't think of anyone more appropriate, because her role in our lives were so critical to the day we're preparing for.

Also, she is moving here soon, which will make it easier to work together! Hopefully, we wont' get in some ridiculous fight while she's living with us and want to kill each other and ruin all of this. :} heh. ;)

Anyway, I'm not sure what your duties will be yet . . . probably research, at most, 'cause you're awesome at it (if you'll accept it), but mostly you'll be working most closely with the next person, below! I will be adding your rights on the forums immediately after putting up this post, so please check out the Bridesmaids forums right away as there are already threads. Also, choose a picture of you that I can use for the main wedding site linked from the Kitty Island main page. :)

Bridesmaid 1 - Pandamo, aka Amanda

For a long time, I had been torn. Pandamo had made me her Maid of Honor, which was a true honor. She knows me very well, and was so supportive of our love. She didn't judge me at all for having a long-distance relationship, and never had a bad word to say about Terinati . . . even when she probably could have said something legitimate without upsetting me that one time . . . :o She came out to visit us in Green Bay, and really, I think she understands me very well too, but somehow in a feminine and delicate way. We shared so much of our dreams together. Pandamo, even though you are a Bridesmaid and not the Maid of Honor, I'm counting on you to help Kyriel out! You have the organization and skill, and experience to know what goes into these things, and you totally get my taste and understand better than anyone how to be frugal. WE NEED THAT! But, Kyriel is a wiz online, so I think the two of you together will be an awesome team. ;) Counting on you!

So, your duties include helping in organizing the event, because I know you're awesome at that. =^--^= I will give you Bridesmaids rights on the forum after this post. Let me know if you want a more current picture to add to the website!

Bridesmaid 2 - Jenesis, AKA Jenne

Good grief, girl! Don't you feel silly for freaking out? To be honest, you do worry me... what with disappearing to go and hang out with a guy on your way out to Pandamo's wedding instead of going to my apartment, that I spent so much time cleaning for you... :} And getting drunk so soon after surgery.... :} WHAT WERE YOU THINKING? But, then, I remember who was the first person outside of Kyriel that I told about Terinati, and then I remember the person who helped us start our pen pal thing. First, she wrote to him so that I could piggy-back her letters, and then eventually she peetered out until it was just Terinati and I talking. If it wasn't for you, Terinati may not have gotten to know me better, and who knows where we'd be?

As for your duties... well, what can I trust you with, Jenesis?! :} LOL. Ah, but I love you anyway. You're in charge of fun. I think you can handle that. But... no... male ... body parts (or "nasty bits," as Kyriel calls them). :b I was so revolted when I found out what girls do for their bachelorette parties. I must emphasize to you, NO MALE BODY PARTS at the bachelorette party, real or imaginary. :} Icky. Actually, I already have fun plans for the bachelorette party, but wouldn't mind them being added upon. Jenesis was always my go-to girl for having a laugh. Straight up!

Register at the forum, and I will give you bridesmaids rights. Let me know if you want a more current picture on the main website. :)

Bridesmaid 3 - Illuminique AKA Carrie

That's right. I kept the bridesmaids I chose initially. I chose Carrie because she is soft-spoken, but just as driven as I am (probably more so, to be honest). She works hard, and is CRAFTY. She can visualize what she wants, and puts it into reality like a magician. It truly is incredible, and I feel so fortunate to know her. For another thing, she's physically here, and that's a huge plus, even with her being as busy as she is. But really, I trust her to be honest, and because of her unique perspectives, I know she'll see things my other friends and myself won't see, and come up with great ideas. She's shown she really cares what happens to Terinati and I in our wedding, and is so supportive and not weirded out by our love of sushi. neh! :) Most of all, Carrie is really low-maintenance. I think she will be good to work with Jenesis on the fun stuff, because Carrie will know what things will make me too uncomfortable, but despite her quiet demeanor, knows how to have a good time herself. ;) And, because she is local, she'll have a better idea of what things are possible here, since it's a very different environment and atmosphere from Kennewick.

Register on the forum and I'll give you access to the Bridesmaids forums. Also... dude... give me a picture for the website! I'm using your prom photo right now. :} I've SEEN lovely pictures of you!! I know they exist! :}

And, because I didn't want to leave others out . . . I went to the trouble of creating roles to include you! Some people will think I'm crazy after all the trouble I went to find out what I did, but I feel better about handling this this way. I still wasn't able to get everyone, though. :/


Flower Girl - Anna

It would be weird to have you as a bridesmaid, since I haven't known you that long, but I feel like we are becoming closer and that you are another practical, level-headed, non-dramatic person who really cares and constantly asks how the wedding is going. Since I don't want children at the ceremony, I had to toss out all ideas of using other people's children as the flower girl and ring bearer. It would leave others asking themselves, "Does someone think we can't handle our kids?" Nope. Not having any of that. Silly, paranoid humans. So, Terinati and I decided on an adult flower girl and ring bearer. Can you guess who the ring bearer is? I bet you can. Anna, you are in charge of flowers. Not shocking, right? ;) Register on the forum and I'll give you access to the bridesmaids forums, since you'll be coordinating with the rest of us. Oh, and e-mail me a pic I can add to the website! You may be the only one of us dressed differently, but I haven't worked that all out yet...

Last, but definitely not least...

Samurai-ko Usher - Rainshine, AKA Athena

First of all, I needed someone to be in charge of music, which we're not doing live (that is, unless Ace of Base comes to the US and decides that I'm their best friend and just MUST perform live for our wedding, or unless Terinati's father can get the Sparkplugz all the way out here, 'cause we're having the wedding locally), and you are the only person I trust with music. But, of course, the person in charge of music can't be in the party walking down the isle, because she needs to be up front already. We've worked on music our whole lives together, and I know that you'll understand what I want if I explain adequately enough ahead of time. Also, it seems handy to have someone who will be able to run things back and forth between the groom and the bride, and I trust you to be able to do that on our special day with Anna while the other bridesmaids stick by me, where I can keep an eye on them... ;)

Also, I have had nightmares about Diane or other uninvited scary people showing up at the wedding . . . and I realized that no matter who Terinati's usher is, they'd have no idea what those people look like. You do. I'm counting on you to keep out the riff-raff. That means you'll be working closely with Terinati's chosen usher...

Anyway, you of all people know how critical music is to me, and since I'm working on writing some of it myself, you can only imagine . . . I know how badly you wanted to be a bridesmaid, but I hope you understand my reasoning. I want to put people where their talents and emotions are. =^--^=

So, I will be giving you access to the bridesmaid forum as well, and you can contribute there as well. :) Send me a photo!! =^--^=

So, written below are Terinati's choices, since not everyone has access to his blog (this is just copied from his blog):

* * * * * * * * * *

Best Man - Matt Babiash
Not a big surprise; he's been my best friend since like 8th grade. Matt and I have our differences, but there are very few people in this world who conduct themselves according to a code of honor so similar to my own. And besides that, he's like the only person capable of presenting me a consistent challenge in Bushido Blade.

Groomsman #1 - Clayton Jones
My big brother. The only reason he's number one and not number two is because he's older. And the only reason he's not best man is because I have two brothers and can only have one best man. People used to mistake me for him once he moved out of Green Bay... mostly stoners he knew in high school - who were still stoned - but I took it as a compliment. I always enjoy the perspective he injects into our conversations; he's always full of surprises.

Groomsman #2 - Zach Jones
My OTHER big brother. Also doesn't get to be the best man, unless one of them dies in some kind of terrible accident..... I've been pleasantly surprised to find out in the last year that Zach and I have a lot more in common than I thought, and have even had similar strange Nietzschean adventures in the recent past. It's been such a relief to know I'm not the only one.

Groomsman #3 - Miguel Hermann
Few of my friends here in the Beltway Region have stuck so well as Miguel; likely because we have so much in common ... who else can I talk endlessly about video games with? One thing I like about Miguel is that he's so mellow and low-key . . . if the oceans were to burst into flames and the atmosphere was to fill up with chlorine gas, slowly so as not to kill us all immediately but rather to drag out our agonizing deaths in horrible perpetuity, I would go hang out with Miguel - because I could count on him to not be freaking out like some kind of drama queen.

Ring Bearer - Adam Mills-Campisi
We wanna have a ring bearer, but we don't want any small children at our wedding. Because, well . . . it should be conducted with dignity. And we considered for a short while attempting to train (or coerce) the cats into being a ring bearer/flower girl duo, but quickly decided that that was both a pipe dream and perhaps a little too kitchy. So we're gonna have our good friends do the job. Adam has also been a solid friend here in my East Coast life, despite the fact that his first thing to tell me when we met was that he thought I was fat and should go on a diet. He may be socially inept but he's a gentleman and a . . . well, he's a scholar, anyway. And I appreciate that about him. And trust him to carry a very expensive ring for me... and cast it into MOUNT DOOM!.... I mean my hand. During the ceremony. Also, since he's a black belt he'll surely be able to fight off all the Ring Wraiths and other Agents of Sauron.

Samurai Usher - Michael Lerch
Mikey has been, like Matt, my best friend since like 8th grade. I'm lucky to have so many best friends. We usually only chat nowadays when he's at work, but he's still as awesome as he was when we used to hang out every day after school. Assuming he hasn't moved to Europe by the wedding time (or can make it across the Pond to get to the ceremony), he gets the honor of, umm.... ushing at the wedding. I guess it's sort of like being a bouncer, except there will be no velvet ropes. But there will most certainly be a list.

* * * * * * * * * *

Don't forget to register at the forum!! That includes parental units, too! ;)

Whew. That all being said . . . Happy New Year! =^--^=

. . . Huh? Oh. I see Terinati is posting about his year... err.. I guess I could do the same, to lighten the mood a little, but I can guarantee the writing won't be as good as his. I'll try, therefore, to keep it brief.
The year started with waiting for the right moment to announce that I was engaged, and then starting planning, and then being overwhelmed with Terinati's career. Overall, it's been an exciting year, full of changes. We got a car, a new kitty, a new website, and rekindled many friendships. :) It's been a stressful year for most of us, though, and I'm hoping that the next year will be a little more smooth. :} Even though I'm going to college, working full time, planning a wedding, and have many other ambitious things I wish to do besides (learning Japanese, playing with the kitties, watching Fraggle Rock and Gilmore Girls, helping Kyriel with her move, etc.). Looking back, it feels like it's been several years, really. So much has happened! There could be a lot of residual mind garbage, but like the clutter of the apartment, I am happy to recycle all of that and start fresh, excited. I mean, I know in my head that it really isn't fresh and new, but it feels fresh, new, and shiny, full of opportunity, especially when I share it with the people I love. I have friends to be excited for, like for Eileen, for Kyriel and Miguel, and for all that Terinati's learned in the past year, which I am certain will mean once he finds his place, he'll be so much happier than he has been. =^--^= It's a year of adventure and opportunity! And, I don't feel as alone as I did a year ago. :) That's thanks to all of you. So, thank you!! * HUGS *

Okay... time to whip out the sake and count down before I get all teary-eyed! Less than an hour left! Best wishes, everyone! :)


Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

So, here's a video of us (mostly the kitties) enjoying Christmas gifts and sharing in general holiday joy. :) Hope you like it!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Going back to School!

"Dear Jessica ,
Congratulations! On behalf of the faculty and administration of Argosy University Online Programs, it is my pleasure to inform you that you have been accepted into the Psychology - Bachelor , program at Argosy University Online Programs. Please consider this your official notification of acceptance, contingent upon your completion of any outstanding requirements."

HOORAY! I've been dying to blog and tell everyone, "Hey, I'm applying for college. Check it out!" But, then I was like, "Mm.. It's the holidays, so much going on," and "What if I don't get in? Then I'll feel stupid for having said anything." Of course, there's still the, "EEK! I hope we're right about our finances, but I think that we are!" The future looks bright. Finally, a bachelor's degree! I know, for a long time I wanted to work in Japanese, but I just can't see that beyond my personal enjoyment. This, though, has been something I have wanted since I attended CBC, and my passion for it has only grown over the years. Heck, even my RPGs play into this a million-fold!

So, there's the good news! The challenging (I don't consider it "bad") news is that I'm planning for a wedding, going to college, working full time, and ... whew! That's a lot of stuff, ne? Wish us luck!

WAHOO! A new phase of life begins! I'm ready, challenging new stuff! * dances to the Kitty N song *