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I don’t really like blogging about my Weight Watchers success. It makes me feel weird, like I shouldn’t have let myself go so far before I had to look for outside enforcement, but that’s the nature of having a problem. You won’t accept help until you look for it yourself. Going to a WW meeting mustn’t be too far off from an AA meeting, food addicts, alcoholics, we’re not that different. Well, maybe our stories are less depressing at WW, but we’re there to be supportive of each other and to share what’s working and what isn’t and learn the science behind the whats and whys of the program.

Anyhow, it’s working slowly but surly for me. Since Thanksgiving 2012 I’ve lost 20 lbs (well, I hit that milestone a month ago and have been near it since, but I haven’t been great about limiting my birthday/wedding celebration consumption either). Yes, that’s 9 months to loose 20 lbs, or about 2 lbs per month overall. I’m actually quite proud of it and expect that because I’ve lost it so slowly it’s more likely to stay off.

Every time I hit a setback it’s been 3-4 pounds over 2 weeks after some major event revolving around food: baby shower, road trip, baby shower, wedding, birthday, etc. Then it takes me a month to get back on track, and loose what was there before too, which is really frustrating because I feel like I’ve lost the same weight over and over again. It also means that sometimes I loose 6 lbs in a month when 1/2 of those were pounds I’d already lost and yo-yoed back because I ate too much salt/fat/whatever and just had an awful weigh in previously. FINALLY though I’m starting to see that I look and feel different. My waist is back where it should be and old clothes not only fit but are a tad roomy! And the best part is that yoga is getting easier, not because I’m getting stronger, I feel I may have in fact lost muscle tone because I’m not as active as I have been in the past, but because there’s less belly to have to modify around!

The biggest milestone for me is that my wedding dress not only fits again, but it fit without the Spanx I wore underneath for my wedding! WOOHOO!

wedding dress on 30th birthday

pointing out my favorite wedding photo in my wedding dress almost 3 years later
PS- please ignore the mezuzah that appears to be sticking out of my head

Go me! Oh, and I got new glasses too. Not a huge change, but I also got my first pair of prescription sun glasses rather than the magnetic/clip-on sunglasses that went over my regular glasses that I had in the past. I feel like a real grownup now. Watching my food intake, trying to track my physical activity, and real sun glasses. I guess 30 isn’t so bad, it just can’t the tequila/beer and nachos/pizza festival that 23 was and I am 100% OK with that; I like veggies, whole grains, and lean protein!

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This is a GREAT article for “baby-face” 20 and 30-somrthings, like myself!

Extra Petite | Petite Fashion, Style Tips and DIY.

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It’s  been a Ben-centric month (he defended his thesis 2 weeks ago and his 30th birthday was last week) and will continue to be a Ben-centric month because he will be published in Nature magazine and will be graduating at the end of this month. GO BENJAMIN!

Here are some pictures from his James Bond-themed birthday party last night. The goal was to a) see our friends, b)look cute, and c) use up as many open bottles of booze as possible.

I’m still staying busy working at Bonai Shalom 4 days/week. I’ve also been keeping the apartment clean for showings and giving moving companies tours so that they can get us estimates on how much it will cost to move. So far we’ve filled up the entire floor of the study with stuff we’re going to donate to the Boulder Hospice Thrift Shop, and I’m sure we’ll come up with more. I need to buy boxes so that we can pack up books, movies and music, they’re cheaper to mail than to ship with the moving company. We’ll also be shipping things we’ll want in McLean but won’t need in the car (mostly bedding), and when my dad comes out for graduation I’ll be sending him home with a suitcase full of my work clothes and shoes so that they will be in McLean and ready for me to start trying to find a new job (again).

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Apparently my wedding dress was on-trend when I bought it (I’m watching Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince on TV right now). Herminone’s dress from Slugworth’s Christmas party is like a v-neck version of my wedding dress in pink, BEAUTIFUL!

Who knew that I could be trendy? I think of myself as fairly conservative, and possibly frumpy when it comes to fashion. I prefer a boxy college t-shirt and/or hoodie and Levi’s to most other forms of clothing for everyday-wear.

Ben’s parents were in town for the week of Sukkot. There was a LOT of eating out, and Ben and his dad had a lot of time to chat about Ben’s papers that are in the cue for publication and his forthcoming thesis and defense presentation. While they were here, I feel like I ate more in8 days than I usually eat in 14!

To celebrate our anniversary Ben’s parents took us out to dinner at Jill’s, the restaurant at the St. Julien Hotel & Spa, where we were married. It was yummy! The flambé cart that they purchased for our wedding dessert is in regular rotation in the dining room with table-side bananas foster on the dessert menu (along with shrimp scampi and a table-side preparation of Caesar salad too). It was a yummy night on the town.

As soon as it gets here, I’ll publish some photos of our anniversary present to ourselves. I used a Groupon (and spent a $10 voucher I had) to buy a print of one of our wedding photos on aluminum. It should be pretty cool.

We don’t have a single wedding print framed in the house! When I had a desk I had one of our engagement photos framed on my desk, but the only wedding prints we have are in our de facto wedding album! I figured that two years later it was time to fix that.

Dang. I don’t seem to have a digital copy of the engagement photo I used to have on my desk. Here’s a paint version:

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HORAH PERSONALIZED WALL ART | Jewish Wedding Gift | UncommonGoods. $300

I -so- wish that I could afford this piece for our walls. It is customizable with the text color (though I like the green best), and you can pick the bride and groom’s hair and skin colors. It would be 100% perfect if the artist could add glasses and a halter top to the bride!

We don’t even have a single wedding print up on the wall, the only photos we have at all are from some of my world travels in the study, the rest of the art on our walls are prints, paintings, and embroideries from all over the world. We’re so weird about our wedding photos. I made an album out of the proofs, but we STILL haven’t finalized our wedding album for printing (it has 2 too many pages and we’ve needed to thin it and thin it for the last 18 months, this is the 3rd or 4th round of edits!).

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Not that I don’t have enough pretty things, but Ben is going away for a 5 days to a conference and I can take over the kitchen table with all my sewing stuff while he’s gone! Plus, we have a wedding to go to in three weeks…. I’d really like to make this beautiful Anne Fogarty dress, that I saw on-line while looking for “circle skirt dress pattern.” It didn’t take much hunting to find a pattern for it (from what I understand lots of ready-made dresses from that era were also published as patterns.

The problem with the pattern is that it’s for a 33″ bust. Seriously. Thirty three inches, including the girls! I’m sorry, but my rib cage is even larger than that (36 or 34DD = 41 inch bust = rib cage + the girls). Does anyone out there want to take on a project and scale this pattern to fit me? I’m somewhere around petite 18 in the world of sewing patterns (roughly a 14 petite in current sizing for store bought clothes).

Those chevrons carrying over from the bodice to the skirt just make me happy. Maybe I was secretly born in the wrong decade, late 50s early 60s clothes are just so pretty! I guess that’s why I loved my tea length wedding dress so much too, I tried not to play up the vintage styling too much with my dress, but it was such an awesome vintage shape!

I ♥ circle skirts. Maybe I’ll just try and make a chevron-y circle skirt to wear to a friend’s wedding in a few weeks. I’ll go look at Jo-Ann and see if I can find some decent fabric. There’s a fancy suiting/upscale fabric store in town, but other than that I’d have to go to south Denver to find any original fabrics. Oh well, a girl can dream!

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This post was originally written on Weddingbee.com as Twirly Time! in August 2010

Pircilla of Boston, Vineyard Collection, Drew

That’s me below, twirling, with Becca’s niece. She had just watched Shrek before going shopping so we had to twirl like Princess Fiona. That was in August, 2009. I loved it, but boobs were WAY too big for the itty-bitty-boobies that the dress was cut for. I would have had to order up 4 sizes to get enough fabric in the bodice, and then have the rest of the dress taken in. Even my wonderful consultant, Michelle, didn’t advise this.

So I did some internet research and visited a local wedding dress seamstress to see about making this dress for me, in my size and with halter straps and pockets. I was quoted about the same price as the dress on sale and felt very uncomfortable with the seamstress; she didn’t want to make the dress because she hadn’t designed it. It wasn’t the idea of taking the 50’s inspiration and running with it, it was that she didn’t come up with the idea herself! Seamstress fail. I guess I know too much about sewing? I’d thoroughly inspected the dress when I’d tried it on the first time, specifically thinking that someone would be able to custom make it for me. Took the fun out it for her, I guess.


I continued to receive sales emails from Pricilla of Boston and an email from my consultant every 2-3 months. One day, while clicking through a sales email onto their website, I saw that there was a little symbol next to my dress. I looked around and figured out that the symbol meant that my dress could now be custom ordered to my measurements! WHOA! I called to find out what this meant and was told that for this dress, it would only be an extra $250 to get a custom muslin cut just for me with a full fitting and then another fitting when the real dress came in. OMG, totally worth it! I’m 5’2 and wear size 12 petite, and a 34DD, I didn’t think I would have an easy time finding a dress and assumed that I’d be spending around $200+ to have a dress rebuilt to fit me. Having a dress custom made to fit me for only $250 more than just the dress seemed like a steal to me. DEAL.

So, I made an appointment when I got the next email flyer for a sale (10% off, basically neutralizing the tax). I made an appointment with the same consultant I’d seen before and she had the dress waiting for me in the fitting room. She asked me if I wanted to try on any other dresses and I looked around and declined to try on more dresses, I just wanted MY dress. I’d already bought my shoes and brought them in with me, they were a PERFECT match.

We tucked a 1.5″ taupe ribbon over my neck to approximate the halter strap I’m going to have added on. I loved it and stood on the podium twirling and admiring myself in the dress before dashing back into the dressing room to grab my camera and take a few photos.

The seamstresses were all busy and couldn’t take my measurements, so Michelle (my consultant and I are on a first name basis now, she’s seem me in my skivvies a few times at this point) took my measurements and we went about ordering my dress. In order to make the strap I had to order an extra yard of fabric. 45″ wide, ivory silk taffeta, for only $20/yard! Even if the seamstress suggests bias cutting the strap’s fabric, I should still have enough fabric for pockets! I also ordered an extra yard of the tulle to make my own veil with. I think that was $8/year, but it’s polyester, not silk; but at least it’ll match perfectly!

Before my muslin fitting, I took myself to Sol, across the street from Pricilla of Boston, and got the most expensive bra I’ve ever owned. It’s amazing and totally holds up and locks in “the girls.” I test drove it at my cousin’s wedding last week.

(sorry gals, I totally forgot to take any photos of either fitting, yes I had two)

I had my first muslin fitting in mid May. It was more stressful than fun Undecided and I couldn’t sleep the night afterward. First off the torso was 2″ too long and with my boobs properly supported I needed to have the top inch of the zipper let out 1.5″ and the skirt was too long. I couldn’t zip my custom dress all the way up! That was the worst part of dress shopping, and now it was haunting my fitting. The seamstress said she could let it out in an hour and I went to get a light lunch.

The one thing that did make me feel good about my dress was making the sides more fitted, adding boning to the sides for structure and to hide my bra line, and loosing 3″ overall of volume in the skirt by tapering out the tucks on the hips all the way to the hem line. I was not excited by all the tucks that had to be made under my bosoms to shorten the torso and weird way pinned hem sat. I couldn’t sleep that night because I was so worried about how my dress would fit! I had ZERO anxiety when picking my dress, but my first muslin fitting caused major anxiety. WTF?

At 4 AM, after rolling around in bed for 3 hours, I emailed the store (they only have 1 email address? yeah, really weird) and said that I was up all night thinking about how my dress fit and wanted to make it even shorter still (so that it’s the same length on me that it is one the runway model), and that I wasn’t sure I liked how it was fitting, especially around my tummy. After I sent the email, I went back to bed and CRASHED.

In the morning I got a call around 11 AM (yes, I was awake, thankyouverymuch) and spoke with the seamstress. She said I could come in around 2 that day. I cleared my calendar and made sure to get there on time. I tried on my dress, full of pins and shortened another 1.5″ to a 3.5″ total, and was assuaged. It was all in my head! The torso fit the way it fit because my butt is in the way on the back side of the dress and I’m OK with that because I can’t change it.

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Those gloves were loaned to me by my birthday twin, WAJR. They are the ONLY thing still missing from the wedding. I feel AWFUL about that because I know she lost her rosary on her wedding day (someone took her bouquet, with it still attached!) and now I feel like there’s some sort of wedding jinx. Anyway, incase my mother had forgotten the brooch I wore, they were going to be my something old and something borrowed.

Once I get around to oxycleaning 2 pairs of my my mothers gloves (one of which look quite similar) I’ll give them to WAJR since she looks extra-super-fab in authentic mid-century clothing where as only my hands and feet fit in things from that era that aren’t plus sized or “full figured.” Anyway, I owe her some gloves, though I’m sure my mother’s gloves that she wore to her sweet 16 party don’t have the same sentimental value of ones wore to her own wedding, and mine, but they are a 1/2 size bigger and the “old, borrowed” gloves were a 6, not 6 1/2.

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I did my own makeup, wearing just my underwear in the bathroom, so there won’t be any of those photos here to share with the interwebs.
The photos of Andrea/my mom zipping up my dress are funny. I’d asked my mom to zip me up, but while I was standing there and holding up my dress Andrea swooped in and did it for me. Whoops! So there are two sets of photos of zipping up my dress!
Remember all those password protected posts about my dress? (The password is DRESS, if you want it). I think that my dress is perfectly twirly! It was perfect.
I really look forward to wearing my dress again in March to Andrea’s wedding in the Berkshires. Don’t worry, I’m not tacky, I’m going to have it dyed Williamsburg blue. Only the dress and strap will take the dye, the exposed tulle and inner-lining are polyester and won’t take silk dye. It will be my formal dress for anything I can get away with wearing it for! Ben’s got a suit and a tux and now we can go to the Nobel award banquet or an inaugural ball, or something!
Up next: going to meet Ben

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Rachel, from ZING, did my hair. She was great. My hair stayed put all day, and she was very calm and quiet while doing my hair. I don’t remember her once asking me to do anything other than look up/down/to the side. Plus, my head didn’t ache at the end of the day like it did after my trial!

There were a LOT of bobbie pins in my hair, but look at that shiny pile of curls!

At that point, I had to get up and stretch. I think this was also when Miri came in and dropped off her baby for me to snuggle.

And the crowning touch, my tiara!

Also, did you notice a difference in photo quality there? The first photo is with my old point-and-shoot and the later ones were with the new camera we received as a wedding present. Andrea used both to take some photos of me getting ready and of the bedekin/ketubah as well.

While Rachel was fussing with my hair, Amanda, from Kokoro Photography, took photos of many of my accessories and details. Her mom and partner, Debi, took lots of photos of Ben (I’ll post those tomorrow).

I know that my mom thinks that these photos of what I wore are excessive, but I appreciate them! I spend all that time and effort gathering them, it’s nice to have that documented. Plus, now you all can see them! Would anyone like to borrow the veil, tiara, shoes (size 6.5), or earrings? I suppose I could just pass on those accessories, and they can make their way through the world. Especially the veil, when can I ever wear that again?! I suppose it’ll just stick around as a future dress-up item if no one else wants it.

I’m sure I’ll find other reasons to wear the earrings and shoes again, the brooch is my great-great grandmother’s (or her sister’s) and is in my mother’s keeping, the pearl bracelet is from my grandma via my uncle Richard. Everything else is new.

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