Category Archives: Uncategorized

Cursing Sir Walter Raleigh

After Day 1 of the Task-Tackling Trip, I am so tired I can’t even come up with any figurative language to tell you how tired I am. Just believe me when I say that I am beyond “Oh, I seem to be yawning quite a bit” tired; beyond “all my muscles are kind of achey and my eyes feel gritty” tired; beyond “Wow I am hallucinating every horizontal surface becoming a fluffy pillowy roast turkey” tired. I’m tiiiiired.

I assume this is how I am going to feel every day for the month before my wedding.

Oh boy.


Invitation Wording

I cannot put off this atrocious task any longer, I need to decide what wording to use for our invitations.

I am a stickler for etiquette rules, and there are a lot of rules about the wording on wedding invitations.  The way you list the names indicates who is paying, which is obviously super important so people know who to thank judge.

If our invitation were following etiquette rules and trying to be honest, it would end up saying something along the lines of

This invitation wording obviously won’t do. I mean, for one thing it is too wordy! And while wedding invitations are supposed to tell you who is paying for the thing, but only after use of the Etiquette Decoder Ring that comes in boxes of Emily Post Cereal. This is far too straightforward.

So I think we’re gonna blow past that whole issue and use the “together with their families” wording. Which leaves open the question of how to END that sentence: “Together with their families Robin Hitchcock and Collin Diedrich…” do what now? Should we go with the staid “request the pleasure of your company” even though we’re already breaking from traditional invitation language? Do we try to “invite you to share in the joy and celebration” of our wedding, or something googedy like that?

I asked Collin for his input on how to end the sentence, and here’s the invitation he drafted:

Which frankly, I like a lot better. A few pushes in the direction of the English language and some additional details and that could be the perfect invitation.  Except for the ghost of my grandmother terrifying me into believing that if I put the word “awesome” on my wedding invitation the even will lose all hope of grace and my marriage will be subsequently doomed.

ALSO: this entire post was a ruse to get you to comment on those fonts. And/or suggest excellent free fonts we can use for our invitations.

March 2011 Brides Magazine, by the Numbers

For those of you wondering why this is almost an entire month late, don’t look at me, look at the CONSPIRATORS!  But better late than never, right?

# pages: 378
# pages of advertising: 283 1/3
# pages in longest uninterrupted run of advertisements: 66 [SERIOUSLY. That’s a solid 1/4 inch of magazine.]

# images of brides with visible faces: 194
# pictured brides who are undeniably smiling:42

# pictured brides who are arguably smiling:49

The dedication to SMIZE makes this one count.

Activate Human Emotion Simulation Program File: Joy

# pictured brides with dead or stoned expressions: 59

Zombie Taylor Swift

"My flower-scope lets me see music"









# pictured brides who look sad, angry, scared, or are expressing some other negative emotion: 44

I wish Dad were alive.

UGH, I TOLD the limo driver not to take the 405.


No one will find the body before I say 'I do.' RIGHT?!

That Daytime Emmy is MINE.

“Normal” symptom of bridal brain covered in “No, You’re Not Crazy”: “You want to kill…everyone.”
Amount that surprises me given the emotions roundup above: ZERO.

Movie Review: Julie & Julia

“What do you think a blog is? It’s just ‘me me me’ day after day!”

Julie & Julia is not a wedding movie. It has a wedding in it, so it gets in on a technicality. But it is a movie about two things very relevant to HitchDied: blogging, and marriage.

To borrow Sady Doyle’s expression, Julie & Julia illustrates “the reedeming power of Blog.”  Look, my blog is not going to get me a book deal, I’ll never be featured in the New York Times, no Oscar-nominated actress will ever be portraying me on screen. But, without getting too hokey on you, blogging has changed my life.   I love my blog! I want to draw little hearts around it with an Internet pen.   So it’s great to see a movie address the “redeeming power of Blog,” even though it isn’t the most cinematic of subjects.  And  the “Julie” part of Julie & Julia does a fantastic job of depicting how a blog can help not only with getting through a project (be it taking on a cookbook’s worth of recipes or throwing a wedding) but with getting through LIFE.

It also shines a light on the peculiar way blogs and relationships can interact.  Raise your hand if you’ve ever had your partner say, “DO NOT write about this in your blog!”  I hope me and Movie Julie aren’t the only ones.

Because the second subject in Julie & Julia I want to address is its depiction of the title characters’ marriages.  Julia Child and her husband Paul, played by Greatest Living Actress Meryl Streep and No Minor Talent Stanley Tucci, are played as having the greatest marriage anyone could hope for.  They seem to truly enjoy each other, which is a pleasure to watch. And they support each other in chasing their dreams, even when their careers hit stumbling blocks.

Sadly, in my watching of the movie, Julie and her husband Eric’s relationship stands in stark contrast to Julia and Paul’s.  I am not sure how much my interpretation is influenced by the outside knowledge that the couple is no longer married [EDIT: as it turns out, they might still be married? I don’t really know, and it’s probably not my business, memoir about infidelity aside].  But where Paul is steadfast in his support for Julia’s, Eric is all over the place.  He suggested blogging to Julie, and is shown helping her with various recipes (most importantly the “murder of an innocent crustacean” required by lobster thermidor), and for her birthday buys her a string of pearls so she can further emulate her idol. But then there are the scenes where he resents the attention she devotes to blogging, and judges her self-importance regarding her readership, and heatedly tells her he can’t wait for her project to end and wishes he’d never suggested it.  By film’s end he’s swung back to supportive about the blog, talking Julie through a meltdown over Julia Child’s negative response to her blog.  But I see boredom etched on his face.  Maybe the character is just inconsistently written and acted.  But knowing that real-world Julie and Eric divorce [EDIT: cheat on each other] made it hard not to look for cracks in the relationship on film. Especially when it is sharing a movie with the best marriage ever:

All right, on to the wedding.  It’s only a brief scene, but it still looks like a pretty awesome wedding:

Wow.  I know it is a fictionalized depiction of a wedding that happened decades ago, but MAN I wish I could go to that wedding.  It looks like an absolute blast.


February 2011 Brides Magazine, by the Numbers

# pages: 422
# pages of advertising: 314
# pages of advertisements for bridal gowns: 189 1/3
# pages of editorial content focused on bridal gowns: 23
# images of bridal gowns in issue: 280
Total % pages in the issue pertaining to bridal gowns: 50.3%

Price per unit of the high-end invitation suite:$13
Price per unit of the low-end invitation suite: $2.28
Price per unit in our invitation budget (not including postage):$1.60

% of brides who do not get pre-wedding cosmetic procedures, based on quick glance at horribly designed pie chart on page 392:0%

Number of minutes the three scientists in my house have argued about how to interpret that chart: 14 and counting…

Remembering Grammy

I’ve been staring at a blank post field for fifteen minutes.  My grandmother died yesterday.  And for once, I find myself at a loss for words.

I will say this:  losing family does not get any easier with practice.

I Love NYE

New Year’s Eve is always a little intimidating, because of the intense cultural pressure to HAVE FUN, GODDAMNIT.  It’s a little like  a wedding, where you’re supposed to have some profound calm going on AND the most fun you’ve ever had all in one event.  (Although, thankfully, no one really preaches that New Year’s Eve will be a Zen experience.)

Feh. Too much pressure for me!  Like with my wedding, I’m just trying to ignore the expectations of NYE and try to enjoy it for what is undoubtedly awesome about the end of the year:

1. Year-in-review best-of lists. I LOVE THESE. I love reading them. I love discovering new music and movies through them.  I love arguing with them, as though it matters at all what albums are allegedly better than “The Suburbs,” even though we all know they are, in truth, inferior.

2. Discounted liquor. Seriously, if your venue lets you bring your own booze, and you have a cool dark place to store your bottles, BUY SOME BOOZE RIGHT NOW.  NYE is the one time a year us peasants can be counted on to drink bubbly, and prices reflect that.  If this is true in Pennsylvania, where the state basically has a monopoly on liquor sales and can set the prices wherever they want, it is probably even better where there is some economic competition going on.

3. Countdowns. A crowd of people counting backwards from ten is a very exciting thing.  We need more of this in life.

4. A good excuse to wear a cocktail dress. I love dresses.  I wear dresses whenever I can get away with it.  So for me, NYE is more specifically a good excuse to wear a very specific kind of dress:  something too fancy for a regular old night out, but otherwise inappropriate to wear to a wedding. 

5. Hope. I don’t know if I’ve ever had a successful new year’s resolution, but I like the spirit behind them. December 31st is an arbitrary dividing line between years, but we all feel like it is a magical opportunity to wave goodbye to the things we don’t like about our lives and welcome the things we’ve always wanted.  I like that our culture has a regularly-scheduled opportunity to set out for new beginnings.

Everyone have a safe and happy NYE and a wonderful 2011.

Season’s Greetings

Merry Christmas! Love, the HitchDieds.


Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.  Food, family, parades with inflated gigantic cartoons, and GRATITUDE.

Which is what brings me here today. I want to say thank you to my blog for giving me a place to write. I want to say thank you to my readers for caring about what I have to say. I want to say thank you to the commenters for making lively conversation. I want to say thank you to all the other wedding bloggers for giving me so many good reads. I want to say thank you to the wedding blog community for making me feel less lonely in wedding planning, and really, less lonely generally. I’m so happy to have gotten to know you all through the magic of the Wordwide Web of Information Supertubes.

Happy Thanksgiving.

The Rundown

I survived, as the t-shirt says.1  I did not buy a dress at the Running of the Brides, but I had a wonderful time, and I came to the realization that The Dress back in Pittsburgh had ruined me for all other dresses, so when I got back home I went ahead and bought it.   So the RotB was a valuable experience, and I’m so glad I went.

One thing I love about this sale, and a reason I’d recommend it to anyone shopping for a wedding dress, is that you can try on a LOT of dresses. When I went to bridal salons I told them I wanted a slimmer silhouette, so they only brought out those dresses. Here, I could try on a a floufy gigantic dress, be reminded of why I don’t want one of those, jump out of it and into something else entirely.  And it isn’t like you run out of appointment time.

I tried on a lot of dresses. Let me capitalize that for emphasis: A LOT OF DRESSES. I focused on the unusual. The group stationed next to ours commented on my ability to find “all the weird ones.” Some dresses were weird weird. Some dresses were AWESOME weird. Observe:

I was in love with this dress. I just didn’t want to wear it to my wedding. If I were having one of those daytime weddings in a park with “rustic festive” details, I would have bought this dress and skipped out of the store. Well, maybe I would have had a little pause because I think A-line skirts obliterate my figure (and people are always saying they’re universally flattering). Anyway, I didn’t want to buy this dress. But I wanted to find it a good home. I walked around the store in it, and other women kept saying, “What a cool dress!?” And I’d say, “Do you want to try it on?” They’d immediately say, “It’s not for me.” And I’d sigh, “It’s not for me either. But someone NEEDS to buy this dress.” Eventually, some girl tracked me down, saying she had seen me in the dress across the store and wanted to try it. I stripped down pretty much immediately. She kept thanking me profusely, and I was like, “No, thank YOU!” She tried it on and it looked gorgeous on her, and the pink and green beading match her wedding colors, and while she didn’t immediately go buy it and was still undecided when we left, in my imagination she bought that dress and will think of me fondly when she gets dressed on her wedding day.

This was another dress I thought was gorgeous but wrong for me. I can’t commit to the color red like that. If the swoopy gauzy part was gold or some color along those lines? If the skirt were more fitted? If the dress weren’t way too big on me? I would have been all over it. But the RotB is not a place for if-onlys.

Ok, let’s move on to gawking at the weird weird dresses:

Note: when this picture was taken, I was cheering for someone who just found her dress.

I believe this dress was made for a woman who grew up imagining she’d wear her mother’s wedding dress, but upon her engagement discovered to her dismay it had been thrown out during the last move/eaten by moths/destroyed in a fire/altered into non-recognition by a selfish little sister who just happens to be marrying the guy she’s in love with/never existed. Or maybe it actually is from the 1970s, and some Filene’s buyer found it under a pile of dust in a warehouse somewhere.

This is incredibly unflattering nightie is a steal at the sale price of $700! If I wanted to convincingly make one of my boobs look much smaller than the other and create a faux “baby bump” with prosthetics, I’d easily spend twice that much! In addition to being a convincing disguise, this sleepwear can also be worn at your wedding. For the bride who wants that just-rolled-out-of-bed look at the altar! (I was attempting to look like I just woke up in that photo, but I think I look more like I hate you.  Which might be true when I have just woken up. I can be kind of a bitch before I have my coffee.)

I tried on this dress because on the hanger I could not tell what it was supposed to look like. Putting it on my body did not clear up that confusion at all. Why this dress was designed is one of the great mysteries of our time. The mesh up top? The little strings around the shoulders? The waistline that plunged to about an inch above my knee? I think this dress might be a practical joke. And in case you cannot tell from the expression on my face: I am not amused.

Not pictured: The Dress with Superfluous Zippers, The Dress With the V-Neck That Dipped Two Inches Below My Breasts, The Short Dress That Felt Like It Was Made of Ivory Denim.  Also not pictured: the dress that I actually bought and am going to wear to my wedding (I’m trying to keep that bit secret from Collin).  If you really want to see another picture of me, check me out in the Plain Dealer’s slide show

1A note about the shirt: this year’s model reads “I survived…” on the front and “The Running of the Brides” on the back. The shirt is light pink. The words “I survived…” fall right on the bosom. From the front it really, really, really looks like a shirt about breast cancer.