Thursday, June 17, 2010

Album: iPhoto Book Review

The benefit of getting married? Among other things, you don't have to hum and haw over what to get your parents the following holiday season. It's obvious: A photo album. There are so many websites to go through (like Blurb and Snapfish and Shutterfly), but if you have a Mac, you can also order a book directly through iPhoto.

That's what we decided to do. I checked out Blurb (because so many Bees had given it rave reviews), but I was actually scared away by the design process. Instead, I opted for iPhoto's super simple drop-and-drag process. You can customize every page to hold up to four photos and even set it to have just one image bleed off the page. Want to see my favorite layouts?

To be honest, I was pretty disappointed with my first round of orders from iPhoto. The prices were good (about $50 for 32 pages), but when I received the books, there were problems. And the time crunch to send these off before Christmas didn't tame my stress level.

Within a few of the photos, there were random lines. See below:

I e-mailed iPhoto Books (there's no phone number!) and, 24 hours later (the clock was ticking towards Christmas), I got a response. What I found out was that I needed to go to "File" --> "Print" --> "Preview." If I did that process, there would be no lines on my book.

Really? They couldn't tell me this the first time around? I was pretty unhappy, but Apple agreed to refund the shipping from the original order (as I'd had it rushed to get it sent out in time for Christmas), then they remade the books and shipped them overnight for free. I'd say that's pretty good customer service. But not great, because they could've just told me to preview my book the first time.

In the end, the books came out so beautifully and our parents were completely in awe.

We haven't ordered an album for us yet. And I don't think I'll go through iPhoto--I kind of want to invest in a really nice album--but for gifts, these are fantastic. Just remember to "preview" your book before you hit the "order" button.

Where did you get your album? Any good deals out there on professional-quality albums?

Monday, June 14, 2010

Reason number 82,761 why I love Mr. Cowboy Boot

Mr. Cowboy Boot left yesterday for an overnight raft trip on New Mexico's Rio Grande. This is a fairly common affair--he's a part-time raft guide--and overnight trips come up about once a month. That also means that once a month I can expect an adorable surprise.

Last night, as I was crawling into bed, I pulled back the covers to find this note:

It says:

Yep, that's my married name (Mr. CB's last name) on there. I think he had fun writing that.

What does your significant other do to make you feel special?

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Shoulda, Coulda, Woulda...

Nine months. Can you believe it's been nine months since our wedding? It feels like yesterday I was still stamping out-of-town bags and collecting jars for our centerpieces. No matter that married life has taken ahold of us, I can't stop noticing wedding-related goodies--and I'm feeling the need to share. Here are a few things I kinda, sorta wish I had when I was in the planning process.

For the decor...

A wedding planner. Not just a day-of-coordinator, but someone to design the event for you. I had fun DIYing, don't get me wrong, but it would've been fun to have had a life the summer before my wedding too. Who would I have chosen? More than likely, local Santa Fean Jessie Abrams Baca. Just get a look at this eye candy.

Photos from

For the invitations... I just stumbled across this stationer and her work is adorable. It reminds me of summer in all of its carefree, fun-loving spirit. Not only does she offer custom invitations, she also has custom e-invitations for eco-friendly weddings!




For the bridesmaids...

Sample gift certificate from I so wish I'd known about this option when I was handing my ladies their gifts. If you're like me, your bridesmaids--and I had five--are spread across the country. I had two in Los Angeles, one in Boulder, Colorado, one in Upstate New York and one in Brooklyn. This website lets you buy gift certificates towards spa treatments, no matter the location of the recipient. They have a database of spas across the country (even in tiny Santa Fe) that participate in accepting their gift certificates and the cool thing is that most of the spas are independent so, by buying this, your also supporting your bridesmaid's local economy.

Did you find anything after your wedding you wish you'd done? How about something you just can't go without on your wedding day if it hasn't happened yet?