Thursday, June 30, 2011

The 3rd Annual PVP Shindig!

WOW. Blogger was a huge pain last night. I couldn't upload pics. Actually, it let me upload them but then it wouldn't let me post them here! I gave up. Today, I'm at work. It saved my uploads but it took me FOREVER to click on them to add to my post! SO. To avoid spending HOURS on this, i let it just post the pics in whatever order they were in already. Ha!


Sunday was a GREAT day. Fantastic! We had so much good food & lots of quality time with family.

Every year we have what we call the PVP Shindig. Actually, until this year it's been called the "Perry-Venable Shindig". It started in 2009. We decided it'd be much easier to get the two families together (my family & my husband's) to celebrate my husband's birthday, my sister's birthday & father's day (for my dad & my father-in-law) all at one time. Michelle & Brad are exactly one day apart & Father's Day is usually the Sunday before or after their birthdays. Our families have known each other for about 33 years (same age as me...because I was an infant when our parents met), and we don't always get to hang out with both families at once. This is a sure way to all hang out together at least once a year! The title "Perry Venable Shindig" was actually the subject of my email to them organizing the event 3 years ago & it kinda stuck.

Only now, we're adding my sister's fiance & his family to the mix & calling it the PVP Shindig. :)

We had a great time Sunday. Brad's parents had never met Mike's parents, but they all got along very well. We had a fun time & I can't wait to do this again next year! My sister's fiance's nephew, Jack, came too & turns out his birthday is in early July, so my mama even got him a little something. She got him some cars from the movie "Cars 2" & he did NOT let go of them. Well, until the end when we lost the yellow one & spent about 30 minutes looking for it! Ha. But at least she knew he loved them! :)

My sis being silly with Jack.
Me & my husband...celebrating his 36th! (36...dang.) He got money from my parents & his parents...which is all he wanted. He got gift cards to two different restaurants also!! I think this is kind of a gift for me too. Date night! :) (One is to Cracker Barrel, the other to Outback Steakhouse. Woohoo!)
Michelle & her soon-to-be sister-in-law, Jennifer. I like her, a lot.
This pic cracks me up... I went to take a pic & mom was talking & talking & talking... she got into a pose for the pic, but kept talking hahaha. Mrs. Cheryl was like, "uh, donna, you are gonna have to stop talking so you can smile for the picture!" This is mom with a big cheesy grin as her retort! Ha!

That's better! :) Love these ladies!

Dogs were invited too, of course! Mom's Molly (yes...she has one eye!) & Michelle's Bali in the corner.

Happy Father's Day to the best father-in-law & dad around!! :) (Dad so looks like he's up to something!)

I know, i know...evil of me to post such a picture! This was my contribution to the party... fresh strawberries, vanilla ice cream & homemade pound cake. DELISH!

My sweet Fievel... he loves that tile floor!

Jack & his grammy! So cute.

Michelle with her future in-laws...so cute! Love this pic. Even Bali had to join in...haha. Glad everyone was able to come to celebrate her (36th!) birthday!
Michelle & her future husband, Mike

A great time was had by all. Can't wait till next year! :)

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Keep Calm & Carry On


You've seen the posters, right? They're everywhere. At first, I didn't know what all the fuss is about. I like the cute, simple design & even the saying...it's good to be reminded to just CALM DOWN & keep on going, you know? It's cute. That's all. But i did eventually hear where it came from...

Keep Calm and Carry On was a poster produced by the British government in 1939 during the beginning of World War II, intended to raise the morale of the British public in the event of invasion. It was little known and never used. The poster was rediscovered in 2000 and has been re-issued by a number of private sector companies, and used as the decorative theme for a range of other products. There are only two known surviving examples of the poster outside of government archives. (Wikipedia)

Well, I've been on Etsy quite a bit today (don't tell...). My friend Tonya & I share an office at work. And we have this really ugly painting on the wall. She put it up there when we moved here, because she just felt like the wall needed SOMETHING. I kinda disagree...I'd rather bare walls than walls with ugly things...but i was too lazy to take it down... (yeah...just call me lazy...i work out 4-5 days/week, i swear).

So today i somehow ended up on Etsy & decided to finally look for a fun bright painting or poster or something to put in place of the ugly painting.

{SIDE NOTE: Honestly, i was going to take a pic of the ugly painting for you, but decided i shouldn't in case the artist saw it on my blog & got her feelings hurt. Then i thought "that's ridiculous. it's probably not even someone you can find through Google!". Then curiosity got the best of me. I googled the artist's name. And oh my dear heavens. She is an artist. She has her own website. She is from my city (or at least lived here once)! CRAZY! I will not post her painting. But trust me. I could do better. And i kind of suck at painting!}

ANYWAY. I looked for inspirational pics first. I saw TONS of great quotes, but none that i thought would work for us. At some point, i decided a "KEEP CALM & CARRY ON" poster would be a great idea for work. I mean, really. Sometimes we just need to be reminded of that. A lot of coworkers come in our office because we have a small copier in there & we also have a supply cabinet in there. The picture is right by the door on anyone's way out. It'd be a good reminder.

As I was looking, I saw some great ones. They have one for everyone now. I'm sure you've seen some of these. But i have to share some of my favorites.



Aren't these great!? They had some clever ones too...


And some funny ones...



Hahaha...that one cracks me up! The artist says, "Sure, you could get one of those ["keep calm & carry on" ones] and try and be cool headed, but why not put up a sign that reflects reality: Sometimes you just want to let it all go and cry with all the power that is in you. In these instances a "Keep Calm" sign might make you mad. A "Sob Uncontrollably" poster will make you laugh. 

I just had a good time looking at all of these & had to share! I will probably get the original one for work but I really want that "Keep Calm & Soak On" one for the bathroom!! That is so "ME"!

Which ones do you like? Got any good ideas for a funny or inspirational quote in the office?

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Happy Birthday, Tim & Marion!

Had such a great weekend! I hate how they just fly by so fast! Oh-well. 

Saturday night we celebrated our friends Tim & Marion. I met both of them in 2006 when i was in our local theater's production of Beauty & the Beast (Tim played Lumiere, by the way). Something about that cast. We all just connected & most of us are still good friends today. That is where they met each other also. We were all together again in late 2007 for Urinetown, the musical (yes, that is the name of a show! A hilarious one, in fact! If you're familiar with it, Marion played Little Sally, Tim played Officer Lockstock & i played Little Becky Two Shoes). I think that is about when they started dating. We were all three cast together again in Best Little Whorehouse in Texas in 2008! And then, Tim was an usher in my wedding. 

Tim & Marion have been away for college, both of them are studying theatre. Brad & I went & saw them last year in Chicago (he was Billy Flynn, she was Mama Morton). I'm telling you, these kids are SUPER TALENTED. They are back in Baton Rouge for the summer & she is starring as Tracy Turnblad in Hairspray! He will be playing Corny Collins. I cannot wait to see it. 

Well, these two also share a birthday: June 25th. Tim turned 25 & Marion turned 22.

We had a great time! There was jambalaya, signature drinks &, because it was Tim's Golden Birthday (25 on the 25th), the decor was gold, too! Everyone was supposed to wear something gold. Unfortunately i found ONE gold thing in my jewelry box... a crown pin i got at work or something. Brad has a Star of David necklace! So that was our gold. Haha. Apparently i should invest in some gold jewelry - all i got is silver!

 There was Karaoke - this is Megan, Shelly & Gordon - they rocked it & were lots of fun to watch!

We had a great time catching up with friends there!

 Mark & Danielle

 Us with our friend Robert

 2 of the theatre's fabulous ladies, Mary & Beth!

 Me & Amber, another girl i met during Beauty & the Beast!

 Me with 2 of my best theatre friends, Danielle & Charlynn :)

Tim & Marion with Gordon, a Hairspray cast member who i met that night. He kept asking where the photographer was referring to ME! I had Marion set him straight, don't want him to be disappointed by my pics! I'm just learning! Hahaha. :) It was great to hear, though!

Happy Birthday, Tim & Marion!
We love you two!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

What I'm Lovin!

Thought I'd join in the fun. Because I'm lovin' lots this week. :) 

Gotta say him first this time...it is his birthday, after all. Ya'll. He's 36. I'm kind of like, WOAH. He is now closer to 40 than 30 & that is truly a scary thought! Before you know it, I'll be 36! CRAP!

Yes, that is Brad. In his Cookie Monster coat. Ahhhhahahaha, how cute is he?!

Anyway, i just love him. I'm loving that he had a day off today. I'm loving that i've been able to spoil him by cooking his favorite meal & a dessert. I'm loving that I get to be married to him. He's the best! 

My friend Ashley started teaching Zumba & I am LOVING her class! There were four in her first class, then about 6 or 8, but last night there were about 20!!! It was crazy! In a good way! I am so excited for her - she is SO GOOD at leading the class & man, it is a WORKOUT! And i smile the whole time. Who smiles while working out?! I mean, really. :) LOVE ZUMBA!

(If you are in Baton Rouge (or better yet, Central/Denham area), join us!!!)


So fro-yo places have been popping up all over Baton Rouge, all of a sudden. It's kinda crazy. They have Menchies, Yogurtland & Tutti Frutti. I went to a Menchie's ages ago & was not impressed, but there's one in central now & everyone LOVES it...maybe i had the wrong thing?! Anyway, i have not been to the other two places (but want to!), but i did recently try the frozen yogurt sold at Roly Poly. They have fresh fruit to top it with. It is DELISH!

It's already almost another weekend, can you believe it? Work hasn't been so bad this week. I've been swamped, but productive & i'm finally catching up from vacation! This weekend we have a birthday party for Tim & Marion, my two really good friends. They have been dating for several years now & they share a birthday! Which is this Saturday. I love Tim & Marion & am excited to share in their special day.
 Us with Tim & Marion 

 And then on Sunday we're having our annual PerryVenable Shindig!! We do this every year... have a big celebration in honor of Brad's birthday, Michelle's birthday (my sister who is turning 36 tomorrow!) & both father's days. This year, Michelle's future hubby & in-laws will be joining us too...so it has now been dubbed the PVP Shindig. :) I can't wait! It'll be a great time!
Shindig 09 - michelle, brad & moi.

{Laura Story}
 I wanted to just put her name & not tell you who she is. Because i really want to share a certain song with you in another post. But you'll just google it anyway (if you haven't heard of her), right? Laura wrote Chris Tomlin's Indescribable. We've been singing that song a lot lately in church & the girl who leads it at church has a beautiful voice. This song has been going through my head all week. 

 Love that song. There is another song of hers that is going through my head this week, too. But that's a story for another post.

Hope you're having a great week!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Sleepy Feefee!

Fievel is always absolutely EXHAUSTED after we come back from vacation. This year is no different. And we are LOVING IT! Haha. 

He slept on & off the entire trip home. And then once we got to mom & dad's, loaded up our car & headed to our place? He could not even hold his eyes open! And he was trying! SO CUTE!

He sacked out when we got home yesterday afternoon. Did not move except to eat & to go out. Slept all through the night without waking up & deciding it was playtime at 5 am! And today? He's done nothing but SLEEP. He is just exhausted!

I kind of wish he was always like this. Much less annoying. HA!


It started to pour just before we left Florida yesterday morning. I stepped out on the balcony & it looked beautiful out there! Decided to snap a few photos. These might be my favorites of the whole trip!

I know they could be better, but I still don't really know what I'm doing with editing. I'll get there one day! :)


It's Friday, yay! Actually, not yay. This means that my vacation is just about over. Back to work on Monday! And actually i have to work at the theatre Saturday & Sunday! At least I have today off! :)

I haven't done this in the last two weeks, which is kind of bizarre for me. Definitely joining in today...& i don't even know what the questions are yet!

Well...here we go!

1.) What is your favorite summer time activity?
Unfortunately, summer time is just like any other time. Work!! Ugh. But swimming is my favorite. i hardly ever go swimming at home. But i just spend a week in Florida & I enjoyed swimming several times! My arms, shoulders & back got some sun, too!

2.) Do you have a laundry soap you stick to, or do you just buy whatever's on sale?
We stick to the one that is the cheapest. I think it's just the Great Value brand. I don't love it, though. Maybe I'll choose something different next time. 

3.) What is your favorite dinner to make in the summer?
I am finding that i don't like to cook as much in the summer. It's too hot! Besides, all my favorite things to cook are comfort foods - aka, better to eat during cold weather! Hmm...I make an awesome turkey burger, though! I haven't actually made it this summer, but that would be a yummy summertime dinner!

4.) Do you have any talents?
Acting & Singing are my fave. And Stage Managing...that's a talent, right?!

5.) If you could be an expert in something, what would it be & why?
I'm going to say cooking. Or health/nutrition. I'm already very interested in both subjects, but I would love to be an expert in them! :)

Happy Friday!

Our Wedding: A to Z.

I saw this on Kate's Blog & I wanted to do it too. A lot of you already know all about my engagement & wedding & all that, but I do have a lot of new followers. So maybe not everyone knows the details. It's fun to look back & remember. I cannot believe we will be celebrating 3 years of marriage this year!

{Warning: this is a REALLY long post. Sorry bout that.}

Anyway. Here it is.
Our Wedding: A to Z.

A = Attendance
We had a big wedding. 300 people were invited & the church seats about 275! And let me tell you...we actually had to cut the list several times due to cost & that was TORTURE! We wanted everyone we love there. Every seat was filled and i LOVE that! Such a spirit of celebration there.

B = Bridesmaids
I had 5 bridesmaids & 1 maid of honor (my sister).
(left to right) Brandy, Shana, Michelle (my sister, Maid of Honor), Me, Jaimie (Brad's sister), Rebecca & Sarah. All very good friends of mine for many years.

C = Cake
I LOVED my cake. I had 2 pics of cakes from a magazine, showed the baker what i liked about each one & this is what i got. LOVED! And it tasted SO GOOD! They wrapped some up for us to take on the honeymoon. DELISH! :) 

This was my husband's Groom's Cake. He wanted one of his favorite keyboard, the Yamaha DX7. I didn't get to taste this one, but it was delish! She did an AWESOME job!

D = Dress
I absolutely LOVE my wedding dress. It was the second one i tried on. It's Ivory, not White, because i look better in Ivory! :) I LOVE IT!

E = Engagement
Brad proposed to me in a restaurant. Now, a lot of people who know me do not realize that i do not like all eyes on me. I can be very talkative & outgoing once i get to know you. Not to mention, i am okay with acting or singing in front of hundreds. But being proposed to in a restaurant? Eek! Brad had bought the ring that day & couldn't wait. He made some smooth come back to something i said & slid the ring across the table to me. I gasped & covered the ring with my hands, just in time for the waitress to come by to see if we needed anything. She had no idea what had just taken place! Brad started to get on his knees & i wouldn't let him! Haha. I didn't want to draw attention to ourselves at ALL. Little did i know that our sisters were waiting at the bar to come take pics & congratulate us as soon as the ring was on my finger. (Our sisters are LOUD! Haha.) Anyway, it was sweet & fun. :) And i remember thinking when i saw the ring, "OMG. It's BEAUTIFUL!" I wanted him to pick it out & he did. And he did a great job! I love my ring!
One of our "rock shots" from the wedding.

F = Flowers
I LOVED my flowers. One of my favorite parts of my wedding. I used "All About Flowers" in Baton Rouge, because the owner was a friend from the theatre. My friend Amber worked for him & actually did my bouquet for me. It's perfect. Exactly what i wanted.

& the bridesmaid's bouquets

G = Groomsmen
Brad's best friend Trey was his best man. He had 5 groomsmen, 2 of them are his cousins.
(left to right) Brad's cousin Matt, his friend Lucas, Brad, his best man & best friend Trey, friend Shaun, cousin Chad & good friend Derek.

H = Honeymoon
The first two nights were spent at a bed & breakfast in St. Francisville. Then we drove to Galveston Texas for a Caribbean Cruise. It was awesome!
Cozumel was GORGEOUS.

I = Invitations
I LOVED our invitations. I always thought i'd have the BEST invitations because i've always loved paper (stationery, cards, etc!). But they were so expensive! I ended up with SIMPLE. And it was beautiful. I don't have a pic, but i loved it. :)

J = Justice of the Peace
Pastor Philip officiated the wedding. He is the pastor at HeartsEase, where we were attending at the time. Love him! He did a great job officiating the wedding, too.
Us with Pastor P

K = Keepsakes
I'm going with "favors" like Kate did! Haha. Here are our favors. Mom found them online & they match our wedding colors. They're cute little jars & we filled them with dinner mints.

L = Ladies Night
My Lingerie Shower was really my "ladies night". I didn't feel the need for a bachelorette party, too, since the shower was a party with my closest girlfriends anyway. We had SO MUCH FUN. It was at Shana's house (one of the bridesmaids) & we laughed all night. It was the bridesmaids & a few other close friends. We had such a good time!

 I also had a Bridesmaid's Brunch at Another Broken Egg Cafe the day before the wedding. It was fun to have a little time with my mom, mother-in-law & bridesmaids before the big day.

M = Music
The song that I walked down the aisle to was a song that Brad composed & orchestrated just for me. Brad's friend, Doug, played the piano for most of the ceremony. He played Canon in D with my friend Morgan (violinist) as the wedding party walked down the aisle. We had friends of ours sing "Whenever You Call" by Mariah Carey & Bryan McKnight. Our friends Lizzie & Nolan sang it & most of the HeartsEase band played for it (we were members of the praise team then). Brad's sister Jaimie sang a beautiful song she found - the lyrics were so "US".  Erin, our worship leader, sang AT LAST by Etta James, as we were walking out after the ceremony.At the reception, our first dance was to Michael Buble's "You & I". I surprised dad by having the DJ play "You Ain't Nuthin But a Hounddog" as he was being called to the dance floor! It was hilarious! (There is a story, of course.) We had it fade out, though & actually danced to "What a Wonderful World".

N = Newlyweds
This is my favorite newlywed pic of us! We have been married for 2 days here. This is the first day of the cruise. I asked a stranger to take a picture of us & i love it. My hair is still curly from the wedding.

O = Old, Borrowed, Blue & New
Something Old was my Papaw's hanky, which was attached to my bouquet.
Something New was my dress & veil!
Something Borrowed was my sister's pearl necklace & earrings.
And this was my Something Blue...
They were sparkly. Found them online & loved them. Too cute!

P = Photographer
I went with Amanda Meyer Photography & she was great! She was a great photographer but she also felt like a coordinator of sorts! Haha! She helped me so much when i had no idea what i was supposed to do next! :) Love her! And she did a great job! Most pics in this post are hers, by the way!
Me & my photographer Amanda! She became a mom to TWINS a year after this post, by the way! Crazy! :)

Q = Question Popping
LOL. See E for Engagement. :)

R = Reception
We had the reception at Reflections. I'm really glad i went with this place. It was not my first choice because the place i wanted was more expensive & i would have had to cut my guest list again. I wasn't willing to do that, so we went with Reflections. And let me tell you - i am THRILLED that i went with them. First of all, it had plenty of room for all guests. Secondly, it was a lot closer to the church. And most important? I just think they had the BEST service. The DJ Eric (who i went to high school with) was AWESOME. He met us when we got there in a side room & talked to us for a minute, gave us some alone time & then was just basically there to help everything go smoothly. He helped it to feel not quite so overwhelming, haha! We had a great time. And everyone said the food was SO GOOD!

S = Shoes
I loved my shoes. They were pretty. :) I thought i was doing good getting a low-ish heel, but I should have known better. My feet were killing me at the reception!

My sister being the good MOH & bringing me flip flops at the reception. It surprised me & I couldn't stop laughing!

T = Trash The Dress
I did not do this. I really really want to. ONE DAY I WILL! :)

U = Unique
The song I walked down the aisle to (the one brad composed & orchestrated).
The video that played pre & post ceremony. It was an interview with us & it was cute! Got a lot of compliments on that. One day i will find it & post it on the blog! :)

 I loved my programs. Wrote a little note about each person in our wedding party. That was fun. Mom designed them & we put them together. She did a great job.

I also think this is unique, even though it was not my idea. Lots of brides have done this. If you are not doing a First Look Session, you MUST do this! You can't see your groom but still get some fun pics. this was a *moment* for me, i almost started crying. I am so glad we did this.

V = Vows
We did the traditional vows. We both love the wording of the traditional vows & wanted to use those.

W = Wedding Woes
aka Regrets? Well, the main one is that the song that was SO IMPORTANT to us (the one brad composed for me to walk down the aisle to) did not start playing until halfway through the song. There is a huge crescendo where the doors would swing open but that part didn't even play, so it was weird backstage (listen to me. Backstage. I mean, er, in the lobby? waiting to come out!) because i couldn't tell if it played or not so i didn't know when to go out. It was important to me & brad. Mom said it sounded fine & all that. But i wish it played the way we wanted it to. Oh-well!
The other regret is i wanted a pic of me with my four ushers, but it didn't happen! They were theatre buddies of mine & one of them got there late & another left right after the ceremony! Sadness! But i still love them. :)
I also do not know WHY i did not get a pic with just me, brad & our sisters. What the heck?!
My MAIN regret is not getting a videographer. We had to cut something & that was it. I regret it now because it was such a blur, i don't remember a lot of it! HAHA.
So those are my woes. But overall? It was absolutely beautiful & fun!! Everyone said it was touching & a blast! Lots of people danced, which i loved. :)

X = X Rated
Hahaha. This question is funny to me. Well, i did get a pretty awesome gift from my very best friend Sarah.
To a virgin girl, this was a pretty awesome gift! She had a note for everything. Love it!

I also have a FUNNY story. I thought it'd be so romantic to leave the wedding in my wedding dress & have Brad, ahem, take it off of me for our wedding night. Um....wow. I don't think i really thought that through. Because THIS?
...is not easy to get undone! Especially for a guy! And for two thirty-year-old virgins?! Well, we were not really wanting to wait any longer! Ha!

{wow, i think i just said way more than i've ever said about that on this blog. i don't even know who all reads this thing. If I knew, I'd be blushing like crazy!}

Y = Young Kids
Wow, we go from X-Rated to Kids?! Alrighty then. We couldn't invite a TON of kids, because of cost. Did you know that a lot of places charge the SAME amount per head for a 6 year old as they do for the adults? That is a LOT of additional cost! So do not be offended if your kids aren't invited to a wedding! I didn't mind kids there, so if they were under 5, i put "and family" on the invite. But if they were over that, i only invited them if i knew them well & REALLY wanted them there! Like the kids i was a nanny for! :) I loved having kids there, though. And if any made a sound during the ceremony, i didn't hear it! :)

The Graphia Kids came in from Shreveport & I was SO HAPPY they were there! I was their nanny for over 3 years before they moved away. Love that family!

my sweet flower girl Kinley

Z  = Zzzzz.
Well, we did catch a little nap in the limo on the way to the Bed & Breakfast. It's an hour drive! It was sweet. I don't know if we slept much after that! Ha!

Well, that was fun. You should do it too. Although i will warn you. It took FOREVER! But it was fun looking back! Thanks, Kate!