one year!

In just about one year from now, I'm going to be marrying my best friend, the man of my dreams.  I don't need to get all sappy on you with details about how much I love him, but trust me when I (with a little help from Ben Folds) say that I am the luckiest...

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 With that being said I'm going to warn you that this post will be entirely about wedding plans and inspiration.  If that isn't your cup of tea, you should probably stop reading now!  If you want to see the rest click "read more" below to follow along after the break

I got excited the other day about our wedding when I stopped by the blog of our wedding photographer, Peter Bang, to see if he had updated with any new pictures since I'd last looked a few months back.   I haven't met Peter in person, but I've spoken to him on the phone and I'm in love.  He cares about the people he photographs and we had a normal, easy conversation the first time we spoke.  He came extremely highly rated by a resident that I worked with at Georgetown.  One night shift, I spent a good portion of time looking through of her wedding pictures.  Here's one of them 

The photographer is a very important part of the wedding because every special moment you have, they are present for.   I love looking at wedding photos. Seeing beautiful weddings through Peter's lens gets me excited about what our wedding will look like.  There was one in particular that blew my mind, not only because the photos are perfect but also because the wedding took place in Georgetown.  We are having our wedding ceremony at Georgetown.  Fiance went to college there as did my mom and brother, who actually works at the university now.  My grandfather taught adjunct for years and my uncle is currently doing the same.  I went to high school in Georgetown and had my HS graduation on the college campus.  And I worked at the hospital, so we have a lot of love and history with the area.  Additional and most important, it is a beautiful chapel that is not too elaborate or ornate but with simple woodwork and stained-glass that really focuses on the mass.  The Jesuit community is one I highly respect and I am honored to be able to celebrate such a blessed and important sacrament in the chapel.

So onto the wedding that Peter captured, see the full set of images here.  My favorite is the one  above of the couple dancing in the street, although I also love the ones of them down by the water.

Now I want to move onto a bit more of a serious challenging topic. Name changes.  Times have changed and I sometimes joke that fiance should take my last name or we should pick a new last name and both change.  Of course, there's not a fat chance in hell he would ever do either of these but it's an interesting thought.

As a female, people assume you're going to take your husband's last name.  We find this normal and I respect the beauty of a couple having a common last name.  But this is a huge deal. Changing. Your. Name.  All of my life, I've grown up with an identity.  My last name runs through my family, it's part of me.  I actually have a very short one-syllable first name so quite often people call me by my first and last name, as if it's one name.  Even my mom and brothers call me by whole name.  Just two weeks ago one of my friends sent out a list of people with 12 names on it,  everyone was listed by first names except me and my friend who also goes by her full name or just her last name.

Of course there are opinions coming from all directions.  My grandmother would most certainly tell me to take fiance's last name, although I guarantee she can't pronounce it yet.  Just in terms of frank convenience my last name is two syllables and his is four, mine is never mispronounced by anyone and his is rarely pronounced correctly.  My aunt would tell me to not change my name because she is going through a divorce.  My mom and dad are divorced and my mom now goes by her maiden name, my step-mom goes by her name and not my dad's last name.  I respect her for making her choice and sticking to it!  There are also many interesting articles out there.  Here are a few. There are a lot of interesting opinions on this site.

I have decided to keep my decision to myself for now until I am 100% certain as to what I'm going to do.  I am lucky enough to have a very supportive man who suggests I do whatever I want and is willing to talk over options with me.  He even listened respectfully to me when I suggested he take my last name and let it sit for a few days just so he understood the gravity of my situation.  I never actually asked or truly wanted him to do such, but I just wanted him to see the other side of the coin. But if I do decide to change my name, I am definitely not looking forward to all of the paperwork involved!  Or more importantly the fact that all of my monogrammed purses, shoes, and more will no longer be applicable!!!!

What do you think?