After Midnight

I had no idea what to do with this after I got it from our wedding videographer/friend, Jeff. He’s the younger brother of my longtime KVUE-TV colleague, Shelton Green, and he’s a filmmaker based in Berlin. He hopped over to Amsterdam for the Hu-Stiles extravaganza and shot for days; he ended up with the whole weekend wrapped  into an eight minute video but as a bonus, created a short “after midnight” mashup featuring the crazy time we had at Club Air.

We are  told Club Air’s THE new nightclub to be at in Amsterdam. It’s in Rembrandtplein, not far from the main wedding hotel, and we wound up partying in the VIP area next to some of Holland’s world cup players (little did we know that a month later, they would be, like, famous.) It was nuts. Transvestites, performance artists, glitter… a night to remember.

Memories at Club AIR, Amsterdam: Elise & Matt in the mix from jeff berlin on Vimeo.

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Home

Back from two weeks in what I’ll call an alternate reality – something like my real life, only way better. A four-day wedding extravaganza that was really more like being on vacation with thirty people we love the most, followed by basking in the sun and exploring the caves on Greece’s largest island. Aside from a rocky donkey ride and one of my bridesmaids accidentally getting her luggage sent home to Austin, NEVADA, everything went flawlessly. Travelogue is to come.

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The Manliest Bridal Shower Brunch

Manly, or the manliest? Male-maid-of-honor/man of honor Sudeep teamed up with my most-together friend, Melissa, to throw a bridal shower brunch at a hot dog place. (The other selections were Taco Cabana and Lambert’s, a barbecue place). As Sudeep once joked – this will appeal to your very masculine side (is there any other?)

Melissa added girly touches, like a lace runner along the table, adorable favors in cloth baggies with pink flowers on them, and Chinese cherry candies. We drank pear mimosas and ate chicken and waffles (leg and thigh – gotta go with the dark meat), shrimp and grits and hash brown casserole, among other selections. My friend Mon-Pon got me a gift that included a Woman’s Day Magazine — but it was “The Man Issue”.

A huge thank you to the brilliant and beautiful people who took part. A delightful brunch before the frenzy of next week gets underway.

Lawfully Wedded

Travis County District Judge Charlie Baird wedged our legal marriage proceedings after four folks on the criminal docket and before jury selection on some aggravated assault trial. Our closest friends in Austin, many who have small babies or large mortgages and cannot make it to Amsterdam, squeezed into the judge’s chambers with us for a quickie legal ceremony on Monday morning. I vaguely remember some sort of vows we had to repeat. But it felt like a strangely out of body experience once things got rolling. Stiles felt his knees locking so he obviously wasn’t more lucid than I was.

One of the women I asked to be a bridesmaid, Virginia, found out she was having a baby that would arrive one month before the wedding in Amsterdam (and boy is baby girl Cass a cutie). She won’t be coming overseas, but is a fantastic bridesmaid anyway. She hosted a classy, gorgeous engagement party at her house for us and guided me along on all things girly. (She also made a makeshift floral arrangement for me for the legal ceremony on Monday with the random fresh flowers she had around her house. Like I said, Virginia rocks.) So we picked her to be our witness, and she got all teary-eyed upon getting the assignment.

Afterwards, the group celebrated with chili cheese dogs (my favorite food). Matrimony Monday couldn’t have gone any better.

Our Dutch Wedding Planner: Reality TV Star

It’s not just American TV programming that’s drowning in shows about rich people. Our Amsterdam wedding planner, Tim Laan, appears in a Dutch reality show about a bunch of rich girls. I can’t understand the language but Tim explained the premise: One of the rich gals needs a planner for a wedding on the Spanish island of Majorca. From what I can tell, the show is ‘Keeping up with the Kardashians’ meets ‘Cribs’ with a dash of ‘My Super Sweet Sixteen’. In the clip, the girls are interviewing potential planners, and Tim’s brought in to make a quick proposal. It’s all Dutch to me…

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Tim Laan Party Planner

Oh hey! We’re back from the trip to Amsterdam to visit Mom. While there we spent one action-packed day checking out the wedding venues. I scraped together random bits of free time to put together a chronicle of our day with Tim Laan party planner, the Dutch professional who’s taking care of nuptial preparation and making sure no one gets arrested during wedding weekend.

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Destination Confusion

We’re I’m beginning wedding planning for nuptials in Amsterdam next May, which is already proving to be a character test.

I’m only on the first task, which is finding a suitable wedding coordinator overseas and hiring him/her without meeting face-to-face. This means I must judge them by context clues, none of which has proven satisfying. There are the people called “Wedding Planners Amsterdam” (natch), only they commit the sin of having music on their website upon arrival.

Then, I spoke to a really nice lady via Skype who runs her wedding coordinating services out of Den Haag (The Hague). I thought things were moving along well until I received an email from her in Comic Sans typeface.*

Tried another place recommended by some people on a website, since I really have no guide but the internets. That place, called “WeddingIdeaz” (I don’t know why it’s one word), has yet to answer one of my phone calls.

At this rate, I know we’re going to wind up getting hitched at City Hall. Somewhere in America.

*I think I’m getting over this one. While this would be viewed as a huge infraction if committed by an American wedding planner,  I feel the cultural disdain for Comic Sans probably hasn’t reached across the Atlantic. Perhaps it hasn’t become a cliche in Europe yet?

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