velessa: (Wedding - us)
Today is our first anniversary! Yay! The year just flew by, it's hard to believe it's been that long already. Tonight we're having dinner at La Fondue, yum!

Happy Anniversary, Josh! ^____^
velessa: (Default)
I had a lot of fun posting the pictures from my wedding, so now I'd like to post the pictures from the weddings of my friends who got married before me (which I never got around to putting up when I took them many months ago, ehehe ^^;)

Cindra & Justin - March 5, 2005 )

Jennie & Jani - May 13, 2006 + July 8, 2006 )

Laura & Mark - January 13, 2007 )
velessa: (Default)
So yes, my husband and I were married on July 7th, 2007 (yeah, I was one of those ^_^ ). I could not have asked for a more beautiful, wonderful, fantastic day. Everything was just amazing, and aside from a few very minor snags, pretty much perfect! I actually was very relaxed and at ease for most of the day; the only time I really got nervous was right before I walked down the aisle.

The Good, The Not As Good, and The Advice )

And now what you're really here for, pictures! )

Well I think that's about enough of that. Check out our Picasa album for pictures from our honeymoon cruise to Alaska! =)


Aug. 18th, 2007 11:50 pm
velessa: (Default)
We have our wedding photos back from the photographer. You can check them out here.

My next task is to upload the photos I took on our honeymoon...Josh has his up right now, but they're mostly of me! =P I took more of the scenery and whatnot.

velessa: (Default)
Quick note: if you were at the wedding, please email your pictures to Thank you!

The long and short of it is it was the best day ever! There were only a couple of minor snags that were quickly fixed and/or easily ignored, and everything else went beautifully. It was truly wonderful and I couldn't have asked for a better wedding. =) Everyone did a great job; I really am lucky to have such amazing family and friends.

So without further ado, here are a few of the pictures I got with my camera. Many more to follow in the near future!

Pictures! )

That's all I have for now, but you can be sure there will be more!
velessa: (Engaged!)
velessa: (Josh & me 11)
I met with the florist this morning to re-do the colors for the flowers now that we HAVE colors (changed around things to ivory instead of white, dark purple and lavender mix, pinks instead of blues). I was late and I took the wrong exit on the freeway, so I called to let them know. I was told they had a walk-in customer anyway, so I had plenty of time to get there before they'd be done with her. It turns out she wasn't a walk-in, someone had double-booked the 10am time slot. The other girl was also named Christine (or some variation), so the florist thought it was me and was confused when I arrived, thinking she had already finished that appointment. So when I got there I ended up waiting around for 10 minutes or so, not really a big deal.

Then this afternoon Josh and I went to Santa Cruz to see a movie and go to the Tea House Spa (you get a private room where you sit in a hot tub and drink tea and the scenery is sort of Japanese-ish). It's very relaxing, and the jasmine tea was good (better than the spearmint tea we tried last time, I thought). The movie we saw was Pan's Labyrinth (although the real title in Spanish was just "The Labyrinth of the Faun," so I don't know why they bothered changing it to "Pan's Labyrinth" in English). It's a Spanish film (English subtitles) that takes place during the Spanish Civil War in 1944, and it's pretty much a portrait of a young girl dealing with the horrible life she's having to live with her mother and new evil step-father (a Captain in the army and the guy in charge of the base where they're living). She's obsessed with fairy tales, and there are these weird ruins next to the base (it's in a forest), and she kind of creates her own fantasy world as a sort of escape from her real life. In it, she's the reincarnation of the long-lost princess of the underworld, and in order to return home to her kingdom, there are three tasks set to her by a faun in the labyrinth (the ruins) to prove her purity (non-mortalness) before she can be allowed back.

I will say this: the fantasy creatures and settings are truly stunning to look at. But aside from that, everything else about her fantastic adventures is rather, well, SCARY. The creatures, both the good and the bad ones, were just plain creepy looking. So I was both fascinated and horrified watching this movie. I was wary of it from the start, as it is rated R, and with GOOD reason! Only some scenes here and there are the actual fantasy story; the rest of it is quite a horrific war story, and violence (including gory scenes) abounds. I ended up shutting my eyes through a good chunk of the "real" story. So while this movie is very creative and interesting, bizarre even, it's also quite graphic. If you have a weak stomach for violence (like me), I don't think I could recommend it. Otherwise, I'd call it a twisted new spin on an Alice-in-Wonderland-type tale and worth seeing.
velessa: (Josh & me 1)
It's soooo preeeetty...teehee! ^_^ Hey I'm allowed to be girly once in a while!

pictures )
velessa: (Bleach - Hanatarou - yay!)
As of tonight, Josh and I are engaged! ^_______^

Apparently he had planned on proposing after the play we're seeing tomorrow night (Peter Pan), but nervousness/jitters got the best of him and he decided to ask tonight on our 6 month anniversary. Of course I immediately accepted!

I'll post a pic of the ring later. The only thing certain about the wedding right now is we want to have it in San Jose. As for anything else, I have no idea yet. There'll be plenty of time for that, right now I'm just incredibly thrilled!!! ♥ ♥ ♥
velessa: (Prince of Tennis - Eiji genki)
Jennie had to get an early start, and Cindra, Erin, and I all got up at 6am to go with her to the salon in Helsinki where she'd be getting her hair and makeup done. We ended up being too early and the place wasn't even open yet, so we went to the supermarket across the street and had pastries for breakfast. Finland has wonderful food, by the way.

Jennie's appointment was for 9am, so that's when we went to the salon. She had her hair done up in intricate loops and twists, and had little white roses stuck in the openings. This took about an hour and a half to do. Then she had her makeup done, which looked very nice, and she was done by 11am. Next it was Jani's turn (he showed up at about 5 after 11) to get his hair done and some makeup put on. This took maybe 15 minutes altogether, whereas Jennie had taken two hours. Jani wasn't too happy about wearing makeup, but he had to since some skin had been burned off his nose when he and Jennie went to get facials, and he'd been at the hands of a student.

After the salon we took the subway back to the train station. We were going to take a taxi but there weren't any big enough for all of us, and we had to get Jennie out of the wind quickly. It was a very windy day, by the way. But we did take a taxi from the train station in Helsinki back to the hotel. When we got there Jani's relatives had delivered about 12 pizzas for lunch. I tried the tuna and shrimp pizza but it was awful, so I switched to the barbecue chicken one instead.

After lunch it was time to get Jennie dressed for the first photo session, which was to take place before the wedding. So everyone in the wedding party had to get in their tuxedos etc., and Jennie had to get in her wedding dress (really gorgeous, pictures later!). After a while Jani arrived (he had to change at his apartment), then the photographer (really cool lady), and we drove over to the church for photos outside next to it. Cindra, Erin, and I went along to help out Jennie with maneuvering her dress and whatever else. Windy, windy, windy! At least it wasn't raining. Lots and lots of photos were taken, then it was back to the hotel for even more photos, which I will try to post in a reasonable amount of time. At the hotel it did start sprinkling a bit, but thankfully it didn't last long and they were able to finish up the picture taking.

Following all that photography, it was finally time for the wedding ceremony itself. We turned out to be a rather forgetful entourage. Cindra and Erin were with Jennie at the church while I was at the room with Jani picking up the wedding programs and Jennie's purse. I brought those over to the church, and Erin came running out yelling that they'd forgotten Jennie's lipstick and she needed a reapplication. So Jani's cousin quickly drove me back to the hotel, I ran to their room and got it, and then we drove back. Then they told me that the veil had also been forgotten! Jani's cousin drove me back again, I ran in and got the veil, then ran back out and we drove back to the church, hoping that was the last of it. As it turned out Cindra's scripture reading in English had also been forgotten, but now there was no time to get it, so Jani's brother Toni ended up doing the reading in Finnish instead. Oops. ^^;

The ceremony was very nice, although I think it ended up being a little longer than it was supposed to. Pretty much everything was done in both English and Finnish, including the singing. At the end of the ceremony soap bubbles were handed out and blown for the exit of the bride and groom from the church. There was a lot of confusion as to where exactly they were giong to exit from, though, because the church has three different exits and we were told to go to the wrong one at first. They did wait until they were at the right one to come out, though.

Following the wedding was the reception at the hotel. Everyone lined up to congratulate bride and groom, then sat down at the tables for foodness. I was at one of the head tables with Cindra, Erin, Jennie's brother Waylen, and his girlfriend Stephanie. For some reason I was sent to retrieve yet another thing from the room; this time it was the bible Jennie and Jani had been given at the ceremony. I still don't know why they needed it. Coordinator Margaret was dismissing tables one at a time to go to the buffet, but she forgot to let ours go when I wasn't there. ;_; But we waited paitently like good school children until she noticed us.

The first course was all cold things, and the food served was very Finnish; lots and lots of fish (eww). I did find some good flat bread and bell peppers. Next came the hot dishes; I had lamb and it was yummy. Following the food was the cutting of the five-tier cake, which was white sponge cake with mango cream filling and an outer covering of white chocolate; pretty good stuff. I did something very strange at this reception. I drank a glass of champagne and two cups of coffee! I don't like either of those things and I don't know what possessed me to drink them, but surprisingly they actually tasted pretty good.

After the food the dancing started. First song was Jennie and Jani alone, the next song they were joined by their parents, then whoever else felt like it. After a few of these Jennie was hauled off to change dresses. Apparently the Chinese tradition is to change outfits as many times as possible during your wedding; the more costume changes you have the wealthier it means you are. For this they decided to compromise and do one change into a dress that was Western style but made of Chinese material. She says she'll be doing a lot more dress changes at the San Jose reception.

Well anyway, the photographer came along for the dress change because she hadn't been there when Jennie was getting into the first dress earlier in the day. So Jennie came back out in her pretty red and gold dress, and she danced with Jani some more. But near the end of the dance she was "kidnapped," and Jani had to win her back by making up a poem with five words she had given earlier. I don't remember what the words were, other than "pickle" and "Aksu" (Jani's cat), but I have videos of the poems he made up. *g* He read the first one to her over a cell phone, but the "bride" they brought out was a bald guy wrapped in white towels. *l* He had to come up with a second poem, and this time he got Jennie back (even though the first poem was better than the second =P).

There was some more dancing and then the traditional bouquet and garter tosses, which were caught by two Finnish people I didn't know. Lots more dancing, including Jennie rocking out by herself and then being caught completely by surprise by the videographer who'd been filming her the entire time. *l* Finns really like to party...they got kind of mad when the dj started finishing up around 11:30pm, which was already half an hour later than he should have stopped. They finally managed to get everyone out the door by about 12:30.

So that was the end of the day! Congratulations, Jennie and Jani! ^_^
velessa: (Gravitation - Eiri & Shuuichi)
I didn't have access to a computer for the last few days, so this is going to get looooong. I'll split it up by day.

This day started off slowly. I stayed at the apartment all morning while Jennie went to have her nails done and Jani went with his mother to Helsinki. When Jennie came back she had very nice French tips with a butterfly on the ring finger nail, and we ate gigantic Finnish cinnamon buns for breakfast/lunch.

Around noon Jani came back and we drove over to pick up the flowers for the wedding. There seemed to be some confusion about it as the flower lady didn't have the bridesmaid bouquets or the corsages done, so all we got was Jennie's bouquet and the flowers for her hair. Jani would have to go pick up the rest of them the next day.

Next came the wedding rehearsal. The flowers were dropped off and stored in the hotel fridge, then we walked down the road to the church by the lake. The church is very old but quite pretty inside, especially the chandaliers. Margaret ran the rehearsal, and then after that there was some free time before we needed to start shuttling people to the train station to go to Helsinki for dinner. Cindra, Erin, and I watched some Finnish tv in their room for a while (strange stuff; a cooking show on MTV?), then Jani drove our group to the train station.

When we got there I realized I still hadn't tried the pear ice cream yet (Jani's favorite), and I wanted to before I left. There are little ice cream stands all over the place, and I knew one of them was next to the train station, and since we had a bit of time before the train came...well I guess I got everyone in the mood for ice cream, because Jennie's whole family followed along and tried a bunch of different flavors. I can see why Jani likes the pear one so much, it is delicious! I wish we had it here.

The train came not too much later and everyone went to Helsinki; I think we got there around 6pm and dinner was at 7:30. People who needed to exchange money did so in the train station, which was pretty much everyone except us girls. We arranged to meet them back there at 6:40, then went off on our own to pick up the dry cleaning from the department store across the street. That done, we snooped around the bakery and got ourselves a pre-dinner snack before going back and joining the others.

A lot of the group decided to walk to the restaurant (I guess so they could see more of the city on the way there), but the girls and Jani chose to take the subway there (easier and made use of the transit card Jennie had just loaded up with money because she had expected everyone to take the subway). When we got to the restaurant there was some confusion about where people would be sitting. Jennie had reserved two private rooms, one seating ten and the other seating twenty, but the rooms weren't really near each other. Jennie's mom didn't like that and wanted us to sit in some tables next to the big room. The staff hadn't set them but said they could do it...however, that was in the main section of the restaurant, where smoking is allowed. Smoke really agitates Jennie and Cindra (and me somewhat), and Jennie finally convinced her mom to let us go take the other room (diplomatically leaving out the fact that additionally she also just wanted to get away from her for a while). So the small room ended up belonging to Jennie, Jani, me, Cindra, Erin, and Jani's parents, aunt, and uncle.

I should mention what this restaurant looked like. Um...14th century hunting lodge? Brick building, old fashioned looking, right on the waterfront. The waiters are dressed like pages or something, they look like they should be at a Renaissance fair. The entire place is covered in dead, stuffed animals. Bears, birds, rabbits, deer, etc. Any typical forest creature you can think of either had its skin, head, or whole body there in the restaurant. Kind of freaky actually; I had an owl staring at me the entire time during dinner.

Dinner was very good - soup, entree, and dessert. The soup turned out to be my favorite part; it was cream of asparagus with bell pepper froth on top. That may not sound very appetizing, but it was sooooooo yummy! For the main course I tried the reindeer because really, when would I get another chance for that? Poor Rudolph. And Dasher, and Dancer, and Donner, and Blitzen...reindeer was a popular choice that night. ;) It was decent, although I'm not really much of a meat eater. The outside was too peppery for me, and it was a bit more charred on top than I would have liked, but the inside was good, if a little underdone in some places. It tasted kind of like beef but not. Dessert was chocolate cheesecake, but it didn't really look or taste like any chocolate cheesecake I'd ever had. It was okay, not great.

I don't think we got out of the restaurant until 10:30 or 11. It's hard to tell it's getting late since in Finland right now it doesn't really get dark until 11:30pm or so. This time everyone took the subway back to the train station, and then it was back to the hotel for some rest before the big day.
velessa: (Prince of Tennis - Eiji genki)
Tomorrow morning I get to wake up about 4am to leave for my trip to Finland! Have I mentioned this before? My friends [ profile] sipdeek and [ profile] hurtta are getting married there next Saturday, so I'm going to hang out and have fun there for the week before the wedding. Poor Josh will be getting up with me so he can take me to the airport in San Francisco. Except for the traveling part (15 hours there and 16.5 hours coming back!), it's going to be a lot of fun. ^_^

I haven't even been out of the country since I went to Japan in 2001, but at least I didn't have to renew my passport for this trip (although I'd like to, I hate the picture on it!). The only other foreign country I've been to is England, and this will be my first time going to a country where I don't know the first thing about the native language. Luckily lots of people speak English there, and I'll have personal tour guides anyway. ;) I'll be back with lots of pictures and some serious jet lag late the night of the 14th; everyone have a good ten days!

PS - [ profile] merryshannon, thank you soooo much for the DVDs!! *hugs* I got them yesterday and can't wait to watch them when I get back! *.* You're the sweetest!
velessa: (Default)
I ended up not going to AOD after all; instead I wanted to spend time with my friends from high school whom I hadn't seen in many years.

Saturday )

Sunday )

Monday )

That was a long weekend! A cookie for anyone who actually read this far *lol*
velessa: (Default)
I ended up not going to AOD after all; instead I wanted to spend time with my friends from high school whom I hadn't seen in many years.

Saturday )

Sunday )

Monday )

That was a long weekend! A cookie for anyone who actually read this far *lol*


velessa: (Default)

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