Thursday, December 27, 2007

"Always, always, always a bridesmaid..." thankfully not true for me. I've only been in 3 weddings in my lifetime. 1st time as a flower girl for my uncle's wedding. Last year as a MOH. And this year as a BM.

Also I am very grateful to have never had to don anything similar to one of these monstrosities...

(Photos courtesy of

Yup, that's right! I went to see the sneak preview of Katherine Heigl's wedding-themed movie, "27 Dresses". Of course we laughed and laughed, empathized and rationalized the different parts of the movie. However, in effort not to spoil the whole movie for the few of you who may read this post, I will just say that there can be no way that any bridesmaid out there has had as much bad luck with BM dresses as our dear heroine of the movie. It would be fun though - to have a grown up "dress-up closet" as she does.

What would be your worst BM dress ever? I'd love to see pics!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Champagne Taste on a Beer Budget

This is one of my all-time favorite sayings that I think really sums me up. I DO have expensive taste. Yet, I am very much a bargain-hunter that can rarely stomach paying "retail". Thus, this saying also easily translates to our wedding planning.

Though there are the things I can't bargain for price and won't sacrifice for quality: the venue, the photography, the food and beverages....

(Above images from Chrissy Lambert, Signature Drinks, and The Kahala).

What I CAN bargain, skimp, or cut back on is pretty much everything else!!!

To date, we have bargained for:

1. Our scarf wedding favors (for the women) purchased in bulk on our Cambodia trip!

2. My Monique Lhuillier wedding gown from her sample sale!!! Early birds definitely catch the worms!!!

3. Additional Chivari chairs for our outdoor ceremony (to be included in our upgrade package).

Future plans of bargain hunting, negotiating, and other wheeling-dealing tactics include"

1. Airline tickets using mileage points.

2. Invitations hopefully through the savvy skills of FMIL.

3. BM dresses

4. Hawaiian luau for day after wedding celebrations if MOB can work her magic.

5. and everything else I can possibly manage!

I hope that as this wedding planning progresses, I can impart some of my acquired knowledge and secrets to other Brides-to Be! My mission is to make sure everyone gets champagne, even if all I can afford is beer!

Anyone else have good tips?

Friday, December 21, 2007

It's MY Wedding Anyways, Isn't It?

I have long read about over involved MOB's, FMIL's, and statement-making BM's. The mantra "Whose Wedding Is It Anyways" that circulates amongst brides-to-be.
YET - in my case - it seems to be the complete opposite. And it bothers me slightly (well, more than slightly at certain times).
Cases in Point:
* MOB - My mother. What to say about her. Hardworking, independent, modern-day career woman. Not quite motherly at all, yet I had hoped her first daughter getting married would spark some interest in the participating. Her only requests to date so far have been 1) "I don't want to make a speech. Don't make me get up and talk in front of everyone!", and 2) "Give me an itemized list for your budget." That's it. She didn't want to go dress shopping with me - "What do I know? You and I have different tastes." She has no interest in the details - "Pick what you want according to the budget."
* MOH - BFF. A fellow bride-to-be, with an earlier wedding date, who has yet to pick most of any of the details for her own wedding. I will be holding her hand as her MOH for the next few months and pushing her along to get things done. To no fault of her own, this lady owns her own pharmacy business and works another job on Saturday. She is just not capable of doing a lot of things most MOH's do.
* BM#1 - My SiSTeR. I love her to death. She is one of the most precious things in the world to me. However, and this is a big one, she is 8 yrs younger than me, AND a sophomore at an out-of-state university notorious for their parties. Thus, quite self-absorbed in her own life and not one to ask a lot of wedding questions or care about "duties" of a BM. I understand - she's at that point in her life.
* BM#2 - Has a plethora of drama in her life, and though quite attentive to my wedding chitter-chatter, has a lot more to talk about regarding her own issues. And I am the girl who listens and dishes out advice.
* BM#3 - A recent bride herself, she takes interest and gives advice. However, BM#3 is a victim of MAJOR FMIL interference in her wedding. Since she worked approx. 12hr days the entirety of her engagement, she basically let her FMIL plan and expedite the entire destination wedding and does not have much advice to give.
* FMIL & FSIL - Have been through their "BIG" wedding planning with FSIL's wedding several years ago. I think they are pretty much over it after that event (which I am told was approx. 400 people). Not much input except an uncomfortable discussion about our engagement rings (directed at me - pertaining to size and prices). That's an entirely other post I may write about soon.

And then there is the GROOM. My Groom. The one who has been putting in crazy hours at work the past few months as people have been laid-off and he is picking up additional files. The one who is uber laid back, a total guys-guy. Only firm condition from him is "My guys and I WON'T wear PINK.". Anything else, he lets me choose and decide. "Whatever you want beautiful."

Although this complaint list may seem unfounded - I feel like I am all alone in this process. No one else seems to really care about any of the details. For my very practical family - a ring, a minister, any white dress, uncles with cameras, and some phone call invites would suffice.

Is it strange that I would want some more people to be a tad bit over-involved? Maybe because of other weddingbee posts that show that all this "over-involvement" is just proof of love and care? But on the other hand, I fear the old saying, "Be careful what you wish for." and try to make peace with who I have.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Paper Heaven

Okay - I admit. I did not want to do any of the wedding stationery myself. Not only do I not have the time, nor patience. Most of all - I do not have the space.

BUT, (and this is a big one)

I found the Paper Source store near me [at South Coast Plaza - Crystal Court] last week. And um.... yeah. I am now the proud owner of the Marvy Uchida Embossing Heat Tool Model 2500. As the sales associate informed me - it is an investment! For some reason, my sales pitch about this wonderful invention ceased to impress the FH as much as I was at the store.

Nevertheless, armed with a bag full of goodies, pamphlets, and a considerably lighter wallet, I walked out of the store armed with stationery ammunition!

I am NOT going to do the invitation suite myself. For that, I will leave it to the professionals for my sanity's sake. However, I am planning to make my own Save-the-Date cards.

[Insert FH's joke here]

FH: You know how to make God laugh?

Moi: No - how?

FH: Make plans. [chuckle, chuckle]

Back to the topic at hand. To mildly prepare myself, I decided to make about a dozen holiday cards for my coworkers to practice on. Set up our brand new printer and figured out how to print on the cards. Yes - it's been a mighty long time since I've used a home printer.

Step 1: Found the greeting at that matched with my snoflake theme.

Step 2: Printed cards and envelopes.

Step 3: Stamped and embossed galore (stamps, cardstock, envelopes, Color Source Ink pads, clear and glitter embossing powder from Paper Source).

Step 4: Stuff cards into envelopes. Ta-Da! I'm not that impressed with my own work. With all the DIY projects I've seen on Weddingbee, make me long for special envelope liners and maybe some wax to seal them closed.

Perhaps it is a work in progress. At this rate my STD cards may not be in the mail until....

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Silver, Plates, and Sheets... Oh My!

I have REGISTRY on my mind. Fanciful dreams of falling onto lush beds doused in Pratesi and Frette. Swirls of patterns on fine China from Vera, Versace, Calvin, and other people who only need to go by one name. My palms sensitive to the cool touch of sterling silver and eyes glistening from the stainless steel and crystal galore. Christofle, Baccarat, Tuttle, Crate and Barrel, Kitchen Aid, Le Creuset, Calphalon, Shun, Williams-Sonoma, the list goes on and on like the scrolls of Santa's "wish list".
It doesn't help that I get distracted from Christmas shopping by popping into stores to get more info on products. "What's the difference between folded steel edges [on a knife]?" "What's better, ceramic or bone china and why?" "Teflon coated or cast iron? Pros and cons?"
I wake up feeling very exhilarated by my nocturnal shopping spree, yet very guilty. Registry is NOT the reason for getting married. I should embody the mentality that these "items", these "things" are just practical, every-day use household items. Not things to be coveted or lusted after in my sleep. Seriously - I dreamt of finding a bargain set of KNIVES last night that would be a great wedding gift for a couple I know. Yet I was so tempted to keep them for myself. Warped. My brain is warped. Who dreams of such things? Only a serious shopaholic bride-to-be such as myself. I don't deny it. I must be slightly crazy. But at least I can call it temporary insanity, and hope it is cured after the wedding. :)

All photos from

Monday, November 26, 2007


Since when did a video cost $1000 to produce a 60 minute final product? In choosing a "package" with our hotel, I wanted to do the most expensive package (really because I wanted the Chiavari chairs and orchids). But it comes with a videographer - which we need to choose from a list of pre-approved vendors. Trouble is the videographers on my list do not nearly seem as up to par as the local O.C. and L.A. media-mecca selection offers. Truly what you find in la-la land offers you high quality, commercial-ready productions.

The FH really could care less about videos and photographers. Really he has absolutely no interest in helping me choose. Nada, zero, zilch. He actually firmly holds the position that he will not even go back to look at photos, nevertheless a video. And I actualy believe him. Unless there was a bouquet toss with some semblance of an interception, sack, touchdown, or a torn ACL action - there would be little incentive for FH to look over these uber important parts of the wedding.

I really didn't see the point in the video as well. I figure there will be more than enough video coverage from our camera happy relatives. I tried to negotiate with our hotel to alot the $1000 to another category. Despite our corrdinator's best efforts, she could not sway the director to re-allocate a portion to a different vendor.

So you ask - what do I do? I reviewed the three videographers' sites and chose the best one. Now I sit and wait. And hope that he is not already taken. Cause the other videographers look like they may have me shaken in my boots (um heels)... stay tuned!

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Element of Surprise

Do you like surprises? If not, why? If so, why?
I've never really figured out if I enjoy surprises or not. I think in terms of relationships, everything has always been implied. No surprises. No special event to ask me "Will you be my girlfriend?", a la Miss Lovebird.

Everything seems like it has always been assumed or directed. For instance, my first boyfriend mentioned in a statement one day, "I don't want my girlfriend to do xyz." I don't remember what xyz was. I just remember standing there and saying, "Am I your girlfriend now?" and getting a solid and steady "yeah" for an answer.

When I think of how FH confirmed we were getting married was when he told me I better call some hotels if I wanted to get married on 8.8.08. So I guess that was that.

I'm not really upset or bothered by the fact that this is how all my relationships have been. Maybe it's in part because of me. Perhaps I subconsciously attract men who are matter-of-fact or give off the vibe that I don't like surprises?

Given my history, it didn't surprise me when FH announced to me earlier this week, "We have an appointment with L (the jeweler) on Saturday." "OK", I answered. Thinking that I would go with him on the first appointment with L, talk cuts, carats, clarity, color, and the final "C" word, costs. I've just assumed I would be a part of negotiations and FH would want me there.

So - to my surprise, when I called FH yesterday to inquire the time of the appointment, so I could make other plans for the day, he blurted out, "OH - I was just going to go. Did you want to go to?" Shock. Surprise. Yes guys, FH got me. Not in a bad way. I don't mind not going. I think it's rather great that he goes on his own. I was just surprised. Something that seldom happens. And I still haven't decided if I like surprises or not. (BTW, when FH said "we", he meant himself and our friend P, who is introducing L)

What do you guys think? Do you/did you want to be entirely surprised when it comes to your e-ring?

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Who let the cat outta the bag?

It appears my previous post must have been in vain. FH went to his first USC home game last weekend (while I was in Vegas) and the question did pop out from one of his BFF.

Friend: "Hey... are you Viv getting married?"
FH: "Who told you that?"
Friend: "That's what I heard..."
FH: "From who?"
Friend: "From friend D" (who happens to live in FL mind you)
FH: "Who told friend D?"
Friend: "I don't know. So are you guys getting married?"
FH: "Yes"

And then I'm not sure what the rest of the conversation was. Probably back to the football game on hand. LoL. So... you see, FH was right. News does get around in his circle of friends. Actually that did happen to moi as well. At Diane's wedding, 2 friends also asked me as they had "heard" as well. Well, at this point, I see no reason to need any formal engagement announcements or even STD cards. :) Check 1 for the budget!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Keep it on the DL

So the I had to discuss the invite situation with J. I figure it's best to do a formal STD card (as most of my friends have done) very early in advance, so that our friends and family we really want there will block out the dates for us. FH is completely opposed to this and wants to wait and send out formal invites in April/May (w/ the destination wedding in August). In fact - he hasn't even told his groomsmen the fact that we are getting married yet.

Being the girly-girl I am, I was deeply offended, but FH's reasoning is that he wants to wait until "after football season is over". "What?!?!?!?" was my natural reaction. His response to my gawking was that because his group of buddies will naturally talk amongst themselves, and alas, most will not be able to be invited - at least not in the first round of invites. With space limitation of 100, it doesn't leave us with much room for friends. So friends will chatter and be upset when then learn they are not invited (especially when he has been invited to their weddings). Sooo... for the remainder of football season (through attending games and parties) we will keep it on the DL with his friends. Weird you think? Am I the only girl who thinks this is weird? I mean, I understand him - it is very logical and reasonable (see post on "and you are who?".

Monday, September 10, 2007


From question posted by Mr. Bee (on - Do you have any incompatibilities between you and your partner?

1. Bedtime - I NEED to go to bed by a certain time every night to get up for work (10:30), but FI is commonly up til 3am watching TV and cleaning up (he’s a nightowl for sure). I crave that time to cuddle and talk before I drift off to sleep, but usu. I end up alone in those last few moments.

2. Decorating - I need to feel like a place is my “home”. Making it my own by paiting, puting up artwork, etc. Since we are at FH’s place, his motto is “Do not consume” - no more things in. Everything is great the way HE likes it, no changes, etc. Granted he has this year to say that we have a lot of large expenses before anything to the condo gets done. I feel like a nomad when I stay there (and he sees nothing wrong with that).

3. Leftovers - If I don’t think I’ll eat it , I wouldn’t take it. If it seems old to me, I’ll throw it away. FH thinks everything should be brought home “do not waste food”. He also thinks everything brought home should be eaten “do not waste food”. I think some things can be let go (do we really need to finish the spaghetti from last week? blech!). My compromise? Letting him bring it home and throwing old things out when he doesn’t see me.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

If the ring fits...

I finally decided to go ahead and try on some rings at various jewelers today while having drinks and shopping with a girlfriend. I keep reading how many brides had a set idea in their minds of what they wanted in a ring. And then when they go to try them on, they have a complete change of mind or preference. Based on the fear of this potentially happening, I set out to find what I wanted: Three stone - asscher cut - flanked by trapezoids - plain band.

After trying on a variety of styles (radiant w/trapezoids; plain solitare; cushion cut w/pave all around, 3 stone round, asscher w/pave band, princess w/split shank (pave), and 3 stone emerald), I have confirmed that what we decided on IS the best! The closest was a radiant w/trapezoids at Cartier. Not many jewelers carry asschers already set in a ring. But the cut is what I love. Both the sales associates at Cartier & Nathan Alan understood that. The moron from Bailey Banks and Biddle was telling me how he would choose a cushion over the asscher cut any day, even after I told him that it was what I wanted.

Review of the stores I visited today (all at South Coast Plaza):

Cartier - Awesome, awesome service!!! Even though she knew I wasn't buying anything today and actually just there to "try on" different things, she was curteous and most helpful! She even sized me and directed me to Nathan Alan to see if they had something closer to what I wanted. The radiant w/trapezoids was my favorite (of course the center stone was over 3cts and a canary diamond). They were exemplary in service!

Nathan Alan - Also very very curteous and helpful. They had a picture of the ring I wanted and she will order it - no obligation - just to try it on whenever I want. I DID try the asscher cut w/pave band and I am enamored w/the cut. Even though the GF I was shopping with preferred some other styles I tried (she is a solitare, Tiffany-setting, plain band - gal herself), the sales associate at Nathan Alan was great in emphasizing that the cut is a very personal choice. Also that Asscher cuts are very modern and contemporary. I loved that!

Bailey Banks and Biddle - Awful! I would never recommend going there. 5 sales associates with no customers. Took about 5 minutes of me standing at one particular counter before I had the lamest salesassociate come greet me. This man needed a serious lesson in personal hygience and grooming. Reeked of body odor, had a messy comb-over, an ill-fitting jacket, and paisley print tie. Comment about Asscher diamond (see above). When I told him what I wanted to see, he said he had it but brought a loose diamond out. Then when I asked about other tyes of cushion cut settings he had - he told me to just draw what I want and they would design it for me. Useless. Ugh. Awful.

Monday, August 27, 2007

And you are who?

FH and I just spent last night with about 60 of his parents' closest friends (including a few family members). Apparently, even without a ring or formal engagement notice, the associated "aunts and uncles" are fully aware of our wedding date and locale. I think most everyone at the party expects to be invited. We are of course more than happy to entertain all friends and family... just one teensy-weensy problem... our reception hall says "max. 100" and ceremony site says "max. 60 # of seats". Ummmm... FH has 40 family members on one side of his family alone.

We know who "has to be there". It's just the others who should be but aren't on the list that I worry about. What did you do/are you going to do about the ones who aren't invited to the main celebration? We will be having a local reception as well so the more the merrier at that event. I just have a feeling that most would want to be invited to the main event in Hawaii. Any tips or suggestions? Leave it to the parental units to break the news or send them separate invites for the local reception only?

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Back from our trip with wedding loot!

We are back from our Malaysia & Cambodia trip! First of all, the Angkor temples are A-MAZ-ING!!! You must definitely see them in your lifetime! And the food in Malaysia is incredible!!! A pic of us at the famous Angkor Wat temple with one of the 4 smiling gods.

But, back to wedding stuff now. Upon seeing these gorgeous silk scarves in Cambodia, I recalled a blog in which the bride placed pashmina scarves on the backs of chairs, I thought these would be PERFECT for MY wedding. They were much lighter weight than pashminas, and the bright colors would make the perfect colorful accent to our beautiful ocean backdrop. AND they were much more affordable. The different vendors wanted $3-4 for each scarf but FH, being such a negotiator, worked out the volume discount. I got 60 scarves for the wedding to drape across the backs of chairs and have the women to take one as a gift! (This is the closest kind of scarf I could find a picture of). They are each wrapped so nice and flat in a bag that I don't want to take them out of the bags yet).

What was even more amazing was how I managed to fit them all in my already overstuffed luggage.

Monday, August 13, 2007

def. Budget

Ahhh. i think this is a foreign word i will soon need to make my new BFF.

budg·et (bjt) KEY NOUN:
- An itemized summary of estimated or intended expenditures for a given period along with proposals for financing them: submitted the annual budget to Congress. As in - I need to make an itemized summary of estimated or intended expenditures for a given period of a few days for our destination wedding. Am I the only one who thinks it's not just a 1day/1meal event?
- A systematic plan for the expenditure of a usually fixed resource, such as money or time, during a given period: A new car will not be part of our budget this year. As in - a free for all bar and complimentary luau for all of our guests will not be a part of our budget in this lifetime.
- The total sum of money allocated for a particular purpose or period of time: a project with an annual budget of five million dollars. As in - Our wedding bugdet has a limited budget of $xx dollars.
A stock or collection with definite limits: "his budget of general knowledge" (William Hazlitt). As in - my budget of shoes and dresses do not fulfill our needs?
Appalachian Mountains A wallet or small pouch. VERB: budg·et·ed , budg·et·ing , budg·ets VERB: tr.
To plan in advance the expenditure of: needed help budgeting our income; budgeted my time wisely. As in - we DO need help to budget these expenditures and help to budget our time as well.
To enter or account for in a budget: forgot to budget the car payments. As in - I cannot budget for a live band?
VERB: intr.
To make or use a budget. As in - How does a budget work?
Of or relating to a budget: budget items approved by Congress. As in - Budget items not approved by FotB.
Appropriate for a restricted budget; inexpensive: a budget car; budget meals. As in - I think other than the location - ours will need to be a Budget wedding. But I love it!!!

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Does size really matter?

Ahh... perhaps something that pops into every guy's mind at least once in their lifetime. In my case, the issue of size IS wedding related. The rock, the ice, the bling bling! I have my mind set on an (at least 2 carat) Asscher cut stone, flanked by two smaller side stones. Thing I have come to discover about this "idea" I have in mind - to make it a reality will cost Mr. Pineapple a pretty penny! Is it unfair to hold your FH up to this ideal we've created in our minds? Mr. Pineapple is soo sweet and willing to make me happy in just about any way possible. I don't like to be unreasonable or beyond logic and practicality. But I think my dream wedding along with a ring of my dreams may just be too much ka-ching ka-ching!

I don't want to put any more pressure on Mr. Pineapple - I won't say anything further about the the size of the rock or even the setting. It's all for him to decide. I'm quite happy with the fact that I got the destination wedding, and even more estactic to have found and be loved by such a wonderful man as Mr. Pineapple.
But I still have a bit of that little-girl-feeling inside - you know - the one every girl has - (in best pouty face) "but i want to have my cake and eat it too---"
I just have to remind that little girl that "you can't and shouldn't get everything you want in life," otherwise it wouldn't make special things special at all.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

8.8.08 is the date!

Let me preface this by saying that our engagement-to-be is less than traditional, and more rooted in superstitions & practicality. If you know Chinese people, you may have figured out the "why" on the date. FH and I are both ABC's (the common nickname for "American Born Chinese"). However, just because we are ABC's doesn't mean we don't hold a lot of passed on superstitions of our elders. We both partially believe in our parent's superstitions and preferences for particular numbers and traditions. In Chinese, the pronunciation of "8" sounds very much like the pronunciation for the word "fah" or "fat", that is used for fortune, wealth, and good luck. The particular grouping of 8-8-8 is a very popular one, evidenced by selected groupings for phone #'s, license plates, and even addresses.

Now how did we set a date when there hasn't even been a proposal or ring presented yet? It all took place over the long 4th of July weekend this year. As it has now been well-documented, 7-7-07 was a record-breaking date in the history of weddings! Being such an auspicious date favored world-wide, transcending cultures, languages, and even religion, our most superstitious friend wanted to marry on 7.7.07. As we discussed the virtues and glorification of this date, I mentioned I would favor 8.8.08 to FH. As we discussed the virtues of the date, it occurred to FH that 8.8.08 was indeed an ideal date both auspiciously AND practically speaking. While I have a medium sized family and circle of friends, FH comes from a large family with lots of friends (his sister's wedding was 400+ people). The combination of my dream for a destination wedding, the fact that 8.8.08 lands on a Friday immediately cut down on the guest list. Further, there is a high likelihood that many potential guests would be committed to other Chinese weddings, or gambling, or in China for the start of the Olympics, we believe our guest list would be even smaller, with only core friends and family we'd really love to share the event with.

Since we knew it was going to be a very popular date, FH told me to start calling places I was interested in right away. Alas, I only knew of several hotel/resorts in Waikiki that I would like for the wedding I had envisioned in my head since I was in the 4th grade - on a cliff overlooking the ocean. When I started calling around a few weeks ago, my 1st pick was the Kahala Hotel & Resort (formerly known as The Kahala Mandarin). Although I have never been there, I just instantly felt it was the right place when I saw the website. Intimate, spectacular views, with the right ambiance of casual, sophisticated elegance. When I called the Kahala, I was told they did not accept reservations for up to 1 year in advance. That left me with a week and a half before I could book.

During that week, I spent countless hours searching the "net" for other options. The Royal Hawaiian - classic - all booked. The Hilton Hawaiian - well-known - all booked. The Sheraton Moana - no call back - probably all booked. The Sheraton Waikiki - not really what I wanted - no call back either. The Halekulani - beautiful, but also where my cousin was married and I don't want to steal anyone's thunder - no call back. So I ended up where I began, desperately hoping I could get The Kahala.

On 8.8.07 at exactly 11:02 am (that would be 8:02 am Hawaii time) I called The Kahala and they dropped the bomb on me. "Since 8.8.08 is such a popular date and we've had so many inquiries, we are doing a lottery to choose the couple for this date." Ahhhh!!!! What do they mean? How can that be fair? Shouldn't it be "first come fist serve" and gosh darnit I MUST be the 1st caller! My practical side decides to calm down and we give her all our info - preferences for ceremony? "I'd love the Koko Head gazebo, but I'll take what you have." Number of guests? "Give or take 100 - but I'll take what you have." Day or Evening ceremony? "I prefer evening, but again - I'll take what you have." The day progressed with anxiety and I almost gave up on my date. I figured if Hawaii were so difficult to book, then we were too late to get anything local (as where we live has many Chinese communities). 8.9.07 - I call my contact at The Kahala around noon. There were 15 entries for the lotto on 8.8.08 (they only accepted calls on 8.8.07). There were 4 slots and they had not done the drawing yet. Where else to look if I don't get picked? The Halekulani, miraculously on 8.9.07 (around 1pm) they called me back with the message that there were possibilities. Immediately I returned their call and reserved the morning ceremony on The Hau Lanai/Terrace, followed by a lunch reception. This is the picture on their site.
Within the next hour, I receive a call from Karo at The Kahala. I was selected in the drawing and reserved for the Diamond Head Gazebo morning ceremony to be followed with lunch reception in the Waialae Ballroom! I went from despair to having 2 reservations!!!

As of this moment, I am confident we will choose The Kahala. I have heard nothing but rave reviews about their weddings. And although The Halekulani is equally impressive, I would rather let my cousin and his wife keep that hotel as theirs in memories.

So now we have the date! It's feasible! It's possible! Now I need the actual proposal and an e-ring!!!