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Old 03-19-2013, 09:03 AM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2013
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Cristina's Real Life Fairytale - 1/5/2014 <3

There are no words to express my complete and utter joy about the fact that I've met the most amazing man I've ever known and we're professing our love to each other at the happiest place on Earth! A lot of times I get caught up in thinking about all the amazing things happening right now and I just stand in disbelief about the fact that this is my life.

Now I know that this is a wedding planning journal. The thing is… in order for you to get to know me, and hopefully help me with some of these crazy decisions, I feel it’s necessary to fill you in on some of my life details.

Born and raised in South Florida, Disney has always been apart me. Some of our greatest family videos take place in the MK including but not limited to the time where we were at a character breakfast, I burped out loud at the table and said "that was the first time I burped in front of the whole family". Obviously, this being caught on tape has made holidays and family gatherings lots of fun for me... but I digress. Over the past several years my Mom and I have been visiting WDW just before Christmas for some girl bonding time which has made having our wedding there that much more special.

When I was 27 I applied for grad school at NYU and actually got accepted! I couldn’t believe it. The grades for my undergrad were not really anything to write home about so I was pretty much floored when I got the acceptance letter. The program was for a MA in Educational Theatre, which is where I met the girls in my bridal party who also just so happen to be the world’s greatest friends. More on them later.

I fell in love with the city! The lights, the people, the pizza, the energy… all of it was like “wow”. Moving back home was not an option for me. So I started out as a teaching artist in the city running after school programs for the NYC public school system. Up to date, I have taught every single grade (except pre-K).

Very randomly one day, I woke up and said “I want to teach college”. A few months later and after lots of harassing emails to every community college in the 5 boroughs, I was hired by City University of NY as an Adjunct teaching Public Speaking. Never have I been happier in a job before!

Everything was adding up. I was 32 living in the greatest city in the world. I had an amazing job, a loving and supportive family and some crazy outstandingly awesome girlfriends. There was just that one thing missing…

*So since the PJ is starting to get a bit lengthy I've decided to add a Table of Contents for those brides who are looking for specific details. Hopefully this will help everyone with their research. Happy Reading!

How We Met: http://www.disboards.com/showpost.ph...12&postcount=2

Deny-ing Love: http://www.disboards.com/showpost.ph...58&postcount=5

Relationship Ice-Breaker: http://www.disboards.com/showpost.ph...05&postcount=8

The Proposal: http://www.disboards.com/showpost.ph...7&postcount=14

The Decision: http://www.disboards.com/showpost.ph...4&postcount=22

Twas the Nightmare Called Room Block: http://www.disboards.com/showpost.ph...1&postcount=36

Choosing an Officiant: http://www.disboards.com/showpost.ph...8&postcount=44

Photography: http://www.disboards.com/showpost.ph...7&postcount=49

Save The Dates: http://www.disboards.com/showpost.ph...6&postcount=54

Last edited by WittyAmb; 04-14-2013 at 06:28 PM.
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Old 03-19-2013, 09:14 AM   #2
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The Meeting

Just before Andy & I had met, I was actually at a really low point emotionally. I had been single for a few years, my last relationship ending right after my father had passed away. It was a rough break-up and dealing with both losses at the same time was, needless to say, incredibly difficult. I was never one of those girls to go from one guy to the next and though I had been on a couple first dates none of them were special. Consequently, this tended to make me feel worse.

My mother, in her infinite wisdom, always threw out that favorite clichéd phrase, “it’ll happen when you least expect it”. This was coming from the woman who met her husband because she had a robber in her apartment and ran to get help and just so happened to run into my father. Talk about a movie meeting. Living in NYC, I didn’t think it would be that far-fetched to get robbed… meeting the man I’d spend the rest of my life with? I don’t think so.

It just so happens though that I did meet Andy when I least expected it.

Some time in September of 2011, it was one of those sleepless nights for me. Knowing I wasn’t going to win the battle I decided to turn on Conan O’Brien who had just recently started hosting his own show on TBS. I love Conan!

He announced that night that he’d be coming to NYC to do a week of tapings and I just about killed myself traveling the 5 feet it took to get from my bed to my couch to get my computer. Excitedly, I signed up for every day knowing that even if my work schedule conflicted with it, I would make it happen.

Andy, happened to be in town the night that Conan announced and what’s important about this fact is that Andy at the time was living in London and Conan doesn’t air there. He was here in NY on business and was also having a sleepless night. He signed up for every day as well.

Fast forward a few months and it’s the day of the taping that we’d be attending! I was so excited I made a sign that said “You’re my favorite Ginger” and carted it to school with me since I had to teach that morning. Originally, I had signed up for 4 tickets but it turns out I only used 3. When we got to the ticket counter the guy there looked at his seating chart and said “I can put you here (pointing to a spot on the chart)… or…”. He stopped, looked at me and said “you know what, I’m gonna put you here”. We were 2nd row, right orchestra… they were great seats!

Andy ordered 2 tickets and because he didn’t know any one in NY his client decided to set him up on a blind date. Well, low and behold, she cancelled on him 3 hours before the show. Now the debate was “to go or not to go”. He was swamped with work and just didn’t really feel like it. Luckily, the client pushed him out the door and when he made his way to the ticket counter, the guy looked at him and said “you’re alone? I’m going to give you one of the best seats in the house”. He was sat 1st row, right orchestra.

The girls I was with went to go buy t-shirts and there was this guy in front of me alone taking pics and videos from an iPad. In the moment, I just really wanted my picture taken by the stage and since I could see he was already handy with an iPad I figured surely he can take a photo with an iPod (that’s right…I POD—I did not have a big girl phone yet). I was already high on my Conan bliss and feeling much braver than I do normally, I asked him to do it for me.

…There’s no way to explain it. It was an instant connection that was undeniable… almost a tunnel of energy that flowed in between us completely blocking out everyone else. We hit it off immediately. It helped that he had the most adorable accent ever (he’s from Switzerland). At one point he took a picture of me on his iPad because he “wanted a picture of Conan’s biggest fan”. Then he gave me his card and told me I could see the picture on Facebook if I wanted to find him. Admittedly, it was pretty slick.

The next day I found him and we started FB chatting. I am very rarely intrigued by men and despite knowing that he was only in town for 2 weeks, we set a date for the following day with me as tour guide. We met at 3 pm and after lots of walking, 2 restaurants and endless conversation, I went home at 12 am. 9 hours! It was seamless and perfect and unbelievable.

The next two weeks were a complete whirlwind. We spent just about every free moment we had together and he actually extended his trip a few days to spend time with me. When he left I was in a way numb. I knew I had fallen in love with him but out of fear I spent the majority of the time talking myself out of it. He lived in London and building a relationship with someone abroad was unrealistic to me. We decided to keep in touch and say we were “dating” but I could not in any way say I was his girlfriend. That was way too much for me and having been hurt before I proceeded with caution. I knew though, that this was something special.
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Old 03-19-2013, 03:31 PM   #3
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A cliffhanger???????

I love your story so far...can't wait to see what happens next!!!

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Old 03-19-2013, 07:46 PM   #4
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haha! Thanks, Brooke! Lots more to come! :-D
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Old 03-19-2013, 08:35 PM   #5
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Fast forward 2 weeks, Andy and I had started communicating on a regular basis. At first it was chatting and emailing, then it progressed to FaceTime, which honestly is very odd if you haven’t really done it a lot before. I always got the most ridiculous butterflies before I’d pick up the call but I’m grateful for the technology. Most times, we would hang up and I’d immediately think “I’m in so much trouble with this”. Again, I knew I was in love but was living in Deny-land.

We started talking about when we would see each other again and were originally planning on New Years in NYC. I wanted to see him sooner though and for as crazy as it was, I starting toying with the idea of inviting him to FL for Christmas with my family. This is a BIG step for me. I’ve brought a total of 3 guys home to meet my family prior to Andy. Along with that, Christmas is a big deal with us. I spoke to everyone and the general consensus was that this was a totally okay idea. This is including my mom, which is important given this random guy she didn’t know would be staying at her house for 10 days.

Thanksgiving Day, I asked Andy if he’d join us for Christmas and he said yes. Deny-Land turned pretty quickly into Heart Attack Land.

Heart Attack 1: Let me paint a picture. Andy is an only child with basically no cousins (at least ones that he is close to). For Christmas… it’s him and his mom and maybe his aunt. That’s it.

My house? Immediate family members are myself, Mom, 2 brothers and their wives plus 4 kids under the age of 7; add my SIL’s sister’s and their kids and we have a full house.

I was terrified he’d be too overwhelmed.

Heart Attack 2: If my mom doesn’t like him, 10 days are going to go by very slooooowly. Worse, if my dog doesn't like him too.

Heart Attack 3: My brothers are going to threaten his life. (I'm the only girl in a family with Italian men and I'm the baby of the family)

Heart Attack 4: The stress of knowing that all of this could make or break our potential relationship.

My quadruple bypass came the second he met my mom, gave her a pleasant hello and then immediately got onto the floor to hang out with my boy, Simba. I’ll never forget the look on not only my mothers face when he did that but the dogs as well. It was this sort of “woah, what is happening!?” look. Priceless is the best way to describe it.

One thing I’d like to leave you with this evening is this:

My father always made the boys I would date fill out an application called “The Application To Date My Daughter”. Given that Dad was no longer alive, I was pretty happy when my mom decided to give one to Andy any way. Below is what it looks like and I have to say… out of the guys who have filled it out… Andy is the only one who put “Future Son-In-Law” next to “Name”.

NOTE: This application will be incomplete and rejected unless accompanied by a complete financial statement, school history, job history, ancestral lineage, DMV printout, and a current medical report from your doctor.

DATE OF BIRTH______________.
HEIGHT____________ WEIGHT_____________ IQ__________


SOCIAL SECURITY # OR PASSPORT #___________________.

DRIVERS LICENSE #________________

BOY SCOUT RANK AND BADGES____________________________________________ __

HOME ADDRESS__________________________ CITY/STATE/COUNTRY___________

Do you have ONE male and ONE female parent?

If NO, please explain

Number of years they have been married

If less than your age, explain

Do you own a van? _____________

A truck with oversized tires?___________

A waterbed?_____________

A pickup with a mattress in the back?__________

A condom?_______________


Do you have an earring, nose ring, or a belly button ring? ______________

A tattoo?_____________


In 50 words or less, what does LATE mean to you?

__________________________________________________ _______

__________________________________________________ ________

In 50 words or less, what does DON'T TOUCH MY DAUGHTER, mean to you?

__________________________________________________ ________

In 50 words or less, what does ABSTINENCE mean to you?

__________________________________________________ ____

Church you attend:
__________________________________________________ ____

How often you attend:
__________________________________________________ _

When would be the best time to interview your:

father? _____________ priest? _______________

mother? _____________ parole officer? _______

Answer by filling in the blank. Please answer freely, all answers
are confidential.

A: If I were shot, the last place I would want shot would be:

__________________________________________________ ________

B: If I were beaten, the last bone I would want broken is my:

__________________________________________________ ________

C: A woman's place is in the:

__________________________________________________ ________

D: The one thing I hope this application does not ask me about is:

__________________________________________________ ________

E: When I first meet a girl, the thing I notice about her first is:

__________________________________________________ _______

NOTE: if answer E begins with T or A, discontinue. Leaving premises
keeping your head low and running in a serpentine fashion is advised.

What do you want to do IF you grow up?

__________________________________________________ ________

What is the current going rate of a hotel room? _____________________

Condoms come in packages of (circle one)
A: 3
B: 6
C: 9
D: 12

How do you know?

__________________________________________________ ________


Signature (that means sign your name, moron)

Thank you for your interest. Please allow four to six years for

You will be contacted in writing if you are approved. Please do not
try to call or write (since you probably can't, and it would cause
you injury). If your application is rejected, you will be notified by
two gentleman wearing black shirts and white ties carrying violin
cases named Tony and Vinny (you might want to watch your back).

Have a nice day.
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Old 03-20-2013, 02:40 PM   #6
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Congratulations and welcome! I am totally in love with your PJ and your story! I can't wait to read more! (And that application is hilariously awesome.)
Nicole DH
I walked with you once upon a dream || Disney Wedding PJ & TR
1992 WDW: Off-site | 2008 WDW: WL | 2009 DLRP | 2010 DCL: Magic Dover to Barcelona | 2011 WDW: AKL & DCL: Dream 4-Night | 2012 WDW: CB | 2013 WDW: OKW
2013 WDW Wedding: BWV & GF | 2013 DCL: Fantasy 7-Night | 2013 ABD: BSM
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Old 03-20-2013, 03:46 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by LittleKittyMarie View Post
Congratulations and welcome! I am totally in love with your PJ and your story! I can't wait to read more! (And that application is hilariously awesome.)
Lol... thank you!!! The application is pretty amazing!
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Old 03-20-2013, 03:50 PM   #8
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The Ice Breaker

The Ice Breaker

Our morning routine was that Andy would wake up first (he was still on London time), let the dog out, make the coffee and read news. Mom would wake up, he’d get her coffee for her and they’d both sit and read the news. Then eventually I’d stumble out of bed, give Andy a kiss good morning, say hello to my mom and then go make my own coffee.

This was the little routine we performed to perfection each morning.

One fine Florida day, I woke up fully expecting and looking forward to our ritual. I guess he forgot where he was but I went to greet Andy a good morning, not thinking about it and possibly forgetting that my Mom was sitting right across from him, Andy grabbed my breast for a little squeeze squeeze “good morning”.
Immediately, he turned bright read and got up from the table with this huge smile on his face and Mom had this look of shock on her face but not like a regular look… it was a “mom” look.

She said “Oh my God, I can’t believe you did that in front of me!”

He started to apologize but she replied with “No. It’s too late. The damage has been done. I will hold this against you for the rest of your life!”. Then… laughter.

After that it was smooth sailing. She obviously liked him and he seemed to fit in really well with the rest of the family.

One of my favorite things that happened that trip involved my nephew. He was 4 at the time. We were walking alone together (Andy was with my SIL).

Me: Dominic, do you like Andy?
Dominic: NO!
Me: No!? Why not?
Dominic: Because he’s not handsome enough for you!

The trip exceeded my expectations and at that point, I had no more excuses. We made our relationship official and even dropped the elusive L word AND Simba made a new friend.

(Ladies… for the record, I promise to get to wedding stuff. I just love these stories so much. Having said that, if they get boring or if it’s just too much definitely don’t hesitate to tell me. I’d like to gain and keep your attention and not lose you to what you may think is mundane and silly).
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Old 03-20-2013, 03:52 PM   #9
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Can't wait to hear more! Congrats!
Disney Bride

My resort history: BoardWalk Villas, Animal Kingdom Lodge Jambo and Kidani, Saratoga Springs, Port Orleans Riverside, WDW Dolphin, Yacht Club, Contemporary and Coronado Springs.
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Old 03-20-2013, 05:53 PM   #10
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I LOVE LOVE LOVE that application, what a riot!! Sounds like Andy totally "got" your family, so that's a bonus...and a very good sign...

can't wait to hear what happens next...

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Old 03-20-2013, 08:48 PM   #11
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Thanks, bradleyjess! Congrats to you too!!!

Brooke, one of the guys who filled it out responded by creating an "application for the father of the girl I'm dating". I have no clue where it's at but it was a pretty creative response (after he answered the questions of course). This is definitely a tradition I plan to uphold.
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Old 03-20-2013, 09:04 PM   #12
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Aw i love your story!! The application form is pure brilliance
Definitely following along :D
"I know you I walked with you Once upon a dream." "I want adventure in the great wide somewhere"

Twice in the 90s...2000 for the Millennium...Once some other time...August 2010...April 2011...December 2012~With my bf
May 2013 (Exams permitting..yayay)
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Old 03-21-2013, 12:06 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by WittyAmb View Post
Thanks, bradleyjess! Congrats to you too!!!

Brooke, one of the guys who filled it out responded by creating an "application for the father of the girl I'm dating". I have no clue where it's at but it was a pretty creative response (after he answered the questions of course). This is definitely a tradition I plan to uphold.
You're experience is amazing. Being from a very Italian family I can appreciate your dads questionnaire. Hysterical!! Keep the stories coming!!
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Old 03-23-2013, 08:20 AM   #14
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The Proposal!

Can I just tell you? I am so thrilled about today being Saturday. Not so much that it’s happens to be the weekend but more so because it’s the beginning of Spring break and I’ve somehow managed to grade all my students’ midterms! Along with that, we’re flying to FL to spend time with my family for 10 days! So long 30 degrees!!!

The Proposal

This past Christmas Eve everything was going as normal. My entire family was going to come to my mothers home which naturally translated into complete and hysterical “mom” madness for us. There was cooking, cleaning, wrapping and organizing to be done. Luckily, between the 3 of us we got it all done early so we could take our time getting ready.

I don’t know what made me do it. I think I just kind of knew it was going to happen. After my shower, I painted my nails. This is not a normal occurrence but I really just felt like doing it.

Everyone eventually came over and it very quickly turned into Christmas chaos with the kids… there’s running, screaming and in the back round the dog is crying because we don’t let him out when they’re home (he knocks them over--- not being mean but just because he doesn’t know his own size and wants to play). Because of this, Christmas stresses me out. Having said that, present time is the worst! It’s almost as if there’s a snow storm of paper. The kids aren’t even paying attention as to whose gift they’re opening. All they know is that there are boxes with paper and a mysterious something inside and they have to know what it is NOW. Amazing…

Meanwhile, Andy and I are sitting on the couch watching all this unfold. He pulled out this little envelope (which just happened to be a Disney gift card envelope that I thought I lost) and told me that it was my present. Later I learned that he did that in order to throw me off but I knew in that moment that he was going to propose to me.

After everyone had finished, he instructed me to stand up in front of the tree and read what was inside the envelope out loud.

… everything went in slow motion. I knew exactly what was going to happen and was having an anxiety attack in my head. Getting up from the couch and walking to the tree seemed like it took forever and eventually I got to opening up the envelope and reading the paper inside which said:

“I love you” (at the top of the paper)…. “and now turn around”
When I turned around, I saw Andy on one knee with the ring in his hand looking nervous, anxious and happy all at the same time.

“Cristina. I love you. Will you do me the honor and be my wife?”.

It was very sweet. My entire family was there which made it even better!

The best part about it all… I learned that Andy had originally planned to propose to me on a cruise we were going on over New Years Eve. In fact, he told all my girlfriends that that was the plan. He changed his mind because he wanted my mom to be apart of it.

The next best part… not only did he ask my mother for permission… he asked both my brothers as well. You have no idea how happy this made me! My family is an intrinsic part of my life and their love and support mean the world to me. It filled my heart with so much joy when I learned that’s what he had done.

The ring? Omg… I LOVE my ring. He told me to go ring shopping a few months prior and I found “the one” at Van Cleefs and Arpels. Needless to say, it was equal to a down payment of a house. I showed Andy what I wanted and he had it made. It looks exactly like the one in the store. Sometimes, I feel like there’s something wrong with me because in all honesty, I jut can’t stop staring at it!

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Old 03-23-2013, 09:14 AM   #15
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Just joining your thread and I have to tell you, the proposal has me crying like a baby. He's a real keeper, I can't wait to continuer this journey with you and Andy.
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