Where we left off: June 2007 - Brandon had popped the question in San Fran, and I happily accepted. So we were engaged and blissful...on a cloud. Brandon and I had agreed that we both wanted a solid month of enjoying "engaged time" before we discussed serious wedding plans. Then came the parade of people with opinions on what we needed to do next, all telling us we needed to "pick a date", and not just any date, but everyone seemed to want it to be soon. In my MIL's church, the average engagement time is 3 months before the "I Do's", and my mother and aunt both took from 3-6 months to plan and hold their weddings back in the early 80's. We did have some things decided: We really wanted to get married in Carmel, California and we wanted early September.
Why Carmel, California and why early September? For starters, I was born there, and went to a year of high school there, and had spent the majority of my summers in Carmel Valley at my grandfather's tennis resort. For us as a couple, it goes back to Labor Day weekend in September 2005 when after a long summer quarter at school, we decided to road trip from Eugene, Oregon down to San Francisco for a few days. We had the first two days planned and we had tons of fun going to places like The Tonga Room and Top of the Mark which we would do again when we got engaged.
In SF on the trolly going up California Street, September 2005
At The Tonga Room and Hurricane Bar
Mmmm tropical drink in a fresh pineapple.
Brandon and a tropical drink in a bowl.
Having martinis at The Top of the Mark, where we would get engaged in June 2007.
The second day we woke up in our hotel on Embarcadero and the weather was perfect, and I knew we had to go down to Carmel for the day - a two hour drive from SF.
We got to Carmel and the weather was gorgeous! We went to my favorite restaurant in the world, Casanova's.
Having lunch at Casanova's
We were having such a good time in Carmel, we ended up staying for three days! A spontaneous romantic adventure...
Sunset on the beach the first night. Soo gorgeous!
The cute B&B we stayed at, The Happy Landing Inn
Lunch on day two in Carmel Valley at Baja Cantina - it ends up becoming our rehearsal dinner location!
Visiting Tiffany & Co in Carmel on our last day there...we looked at engagement rings! As we drove back to Oregon we decided that if we ended up getting married, we wanted to do it in Carmel.
Back to June 2007: Knowing we didn't want to start planning ourselves, my mom began making a few calls to suss out the situation. It turned out you needed a little over a year to book everything down in Carmel, because it is a small town and popular for weddings. They did have some September '07 openings, and Brandon and I discussed planning a wedding in two and a half months, but sensibly opted instead for September '08 and agreed to start looking online at venues...To be continued!