One of the things me and my sweetie share is a love for crafts. However, we don't necessarily have many common crafts. Come to think about it, we are pretty much individualists when it comes to crafting. First of all, we have discovered that there are a few crafts I just can't do with Erik doing something else crafty alongside me. I like crocheting. I try cross-stitching. It so happens that Erik doesn't have a corresponding hobby that he could do while I do mine. For example, he likes computer hacking. By the way, that doesn't mean he's breaking into anyone's computer - he just likes writing code. Great, right? - it's portable and I should be able to sit and crochet next to him while he codes away on his laptop. Wrong! Since crocheting or cross-stitching doesn't occupy my whole brain I like to occupy my brain a bit more with TV or radio talk shows. Coding, on the other hand, needs most of the brain to focus on the code leaving enough only to listen to music. But listening to music while I am crocheting bores me. See the problem here? Usually this results in me staying where TV is and my sweetie retiring to where a computer with a stereo is. No cuddly crafting together... :(
[caption id="attachment_255" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Rare occasion when I'm not crocheting on the sofa with TV on. :)"][/caption]
Second of all, some of the hobbies we just can't do together. Erik likes playing with power tools. I don't care for those very much. This means that when Erik wants to play with power tools I stay away with my quiet hook and not-so-quiet So You Think You Can Dance.
[caption id="attachment_254" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Sometimes embroidery gets physical.... I am not trying to do push-ups, I'm trying to embroider a huge circle I have previously crocheted. I do not want to admit that, 8 months later, this is still work in progress."][/caption]
For the record though, we do have hobbies we do together, like hiking, camping, gardening or cooking... These are just not crafty hobbies...
Our wedding so far has been an excuse to attempt big DIY projects. We designed our own Save the Dates. And then... then we did what would be the next most logical step - I didn't say it was the wisest one - we proceeded to design and MAKE our invitations. I have read somewhere that one should not attempt to DIY more than 50 invitations if she wants to keep her sanity. Can our excuse be that I read that AFTER we started on the invitations? I don't think so because I doubt it would have stopped us. As much as this has been a tiring journey, I appreciate the fact that this project has so far proven that we can work on such a big task together and make steady progress without killing each other. And the result is pretty impressive (alas I can't reveal the invitations until they go out in the mail and people see them in person, so you'll have to wait for another post to see them here). We have divided tasks - I ended up doing field work - cutting and folding and glueing cardstock, while Erik hacked away on the computer creating our pretty invitations in Inkscape. I have acted as a part-time editor and critic, offering my suggestions on how to make things better. This separation of labor worked really well for us. The only frustration on my part I can think of would come come from realizing, at 11pm, that I had to quit folding and glueing because I had to go to bed, or getting a back pain from lifting a creative weight I made to press down on the glued together invitation pockets.
[caption id="attachment_249" align="aligncenter" width="225" caption="This is the creative weight I made. It might not look like much, but it's heavy! Inside, 2 cooler ice packs and a bag of chick peas are hiding. The weight features a handle made from packing tape, invention of yours truly, patent pending... Just kidding about the patent. For the past 2 days I have been lifting this thing 25 times a night, to stick every invitation holder under it. My back aches just thinking about it :)."][/caption]
Wedding planning has definitely been a great experience for me. We are learning how to work together, how to communicate better, how to keep each other from getting frustrated or stressed or over-tired. We are sharing our excitement and silliness with each other. We are keeping DYI projects from defeating us and track our wedding planning progress in the shared Google doc ... together. I know that wedding planning is traditionally something the bride does on her own, but I am so happy this is not my case. We are doing it together and I wouldn't have it any other way!