11.30.2010

Seuss

"You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams."
Dr. Seuss

"I don't wanna go to sleep tonight." - Beth

**Shuttle Update: There Isn’t Going to Be One**

I’ve mentioned before, both on this blog and to a few of you personally, that we were having a shuttle from the hotel to the R.F. Strickland store for the wedding.  However, due to some weird scheduling issues and the uncertainty around the number of folks utilizing the shuttle, we decided to not setup the shuttle. 

There will be plenty of free parking and I’ll post detailed driving directions over the next several days.

Our apologies for any inconvenience and are very much looking forward to seeing you all in just a few days at our wedception!

Will

Engagement Party!

[caption id="attachment_379" align="alignleft" width="279" caption="Katie, LT, and Me NYE 2009"][/caption]

My two best friends, Katie and LT, wanted to do something really special for Will and me.  I've known them both now for ten years (Wow!)  We were roommates in college, played ball together, and we still somehow have managed to stay the very best of friends after college.  We have always joked about who would be the first to get married, and I was never the one that we all thought would get married first.  But, life happens.  I win!   But Will did have to be approved by my girls first, obviously - he passed.

[caption id="attachment_381" align="alignright" width="322" caption="Beeessssttttt Frrriiieeeennnddssss!!"][/caption]

To help us celebrate - they decided that they would throw an engagement party and it took place last Saturday in the clubroom of my building.

We invited a lot of our closest friends and we had a great turnout.  I was so impressed with the way the girls had everything put together.  We are still eating some of the turkey wraps that were left over :)

For those of you that were able to make it, Will and I both thank you dearly.  It means a lot to both of us that you came out just to celebrate us!  We had a blast and will definitely be a night we will never forget.

[caption id="attachment_386" align="alignleft" width="398" caption="Katie, Me, and LT"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_385" align="alignleft" width="285" caption="Will and Beth at the Engagement Party"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_387" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Some of the girls at the party"][/caption]

Will would agree that I have some of the best friends ever and he is very happy to inherit his best friend-in laws.  I may not have any sisters, but these girls are like my family.  We are closer than sisters and there is just not a thing that I wouldn't do for them.

At the Ritz Carlton: Bainbridge - Bachelor Party

Unlike many (most?) folks, when coming up with what to do for my bachelor party, I knew the clichĂ© Vegas/strippers routine absolutely wasn’t my style.  At all.  However, a bachelor party would be an excellent excuse to get away from non-stop wedding planning and do something different.  I decided that I wanted to spend some one-on-one time with Dad.

I asked him for input several weeks ago but the timing was almost impossible – with everything going on around the holidays, not to mention call schedules, etc. it looked like it wasn’t to be.  As usual, Dad came through with an excellent idea.  He found a hunting lodge not very far from our hunting land where we could sit around a fire, drink cold beer, and go hunting.


[caption id="attachment_358" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="A bear deer. Get it?"]beer[/caption]

The only time we were able to schedule the trip was on the Friday after Thanksgiving and I have to say it was one of the best days of my life.  I could probably make a pretty strong case for it being in the top 3 - if I thought about it long enough.









[caption id="attachment_358" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Not me or my deer..."]Not me or my deer...[/caption] [caption id="attachment_359" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Not Dad or his deer..."]Not Dad or his deer...[/caption]

The Boring Part

Dad and I got up early Friday, left the house, and went hunting.  We were a little late getting out there as I decided I should heat up some breakfast casserole first (sorry Dad!).  Anyways, didn’t see much while hunting – I had a small doe decide the food plot I was watching was a nice comfy place for a nap – otherwise not a whole lot happening.  That, obviously, wasn’t the fun part.

 

[caption id="attachment_373" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Dad cheesing."]Bainbridge Ritz - Dad[/caption] [caption id="attachment_374" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Will"]Bainbridge Ritz - Will[/caption]

The Fun Part

I mentioned the fire and beer right?  THAT was the fun part.  In the morning and early afternoon Dad and I chilled around the fire smoking cigars and hanging out.  It was really great to spend some one-on-one time with the old man.  In fact, we were having such a good time I went ahead and called Mom and Beth and invited them along too.  They showed up in the evening with some steaks that we grilled over the huge fire that we built out in the fire pit.  I realize that it’s lame to invite your Mom and FiancĂ© to your bachelor party but whatareyagunnado.  Mom and Dad smoked Beth and I in Canasta in what was probably the fewest hands in the history of the game.  It’s really hard to describe the day in a blog post that relates how special the day was to me.  It’s something I’ll remember forever and I’m so glad it worked out the way it did.

I’m the luckiest guy in the world.

Oh yea, and I've gotta do better about taking pictures. Dad and I stopped and took these with my phone on the way home. Should've take more. Shame on me.

Engagement Pictures

We got the rest of our engagement pictures!  Anna Beth Kinchen did a great job with them.  Will and I both love them all!  There are about 700 pictures total, and it is impossible to pick which one is my favorite.

I already added some in my post: Engagement Pictures Sneak Peak.

You can view some of them here on Snapfish.

Piedmont Park

Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving came and now is gone.
The Willis's always have our Thanksgiving dinner at Hollonville Baptist Church's reception hall, about 75 of the family members bring their dishes and get together, visit with the family, and of course EAT! I think that I have only missed one Thanksgiving, due to a softball tournament in Disney's Sport Arena, so I was wondering how the Burke Thanksgiving would measure up.

[caption id="attachment_333" align="aligncenter" width="625" caption="Willis Thanksgiving 2010"]Willis Thanksgiving 2010[/caption]

The Burke's swap it up every year and have it at a different family members house. This year it was held at Jimmy and Karen's house in Donalsonville. Like I am used to, they each bring a different dish and have a glorious meal. We really had a great time. I got to meet some of the family that I hadn't met several weeks ago. I did miss my family but I am so glad that I am getting a new family that is very welcoming and charming.  (I didn't take any pictures, oops --just imagine one here)

Will and I are going to swap Thanksgiving and Christmas each year, this is my year to go to the Burke Thanksgiving and Will will come to the Willis Christmas. Since they are about 3.5 hours apart, we couldn't figure out any other way to do it.

11.22.2010

It’s almost Thanksgiving!

As you all probably know, Thanksgiving is almost here.  I can’t wait!  This will be our first Thanksgiving together and Beth’s first (of many) with my Family.  Bring on the turkey and dressing!  Also just found out that Dad and I are going to go hunting Friday.  Very much looking forward to hanging out with my “old” man – we don’t get to do that as much as I’d like.

See many of you soon!

Will

11.19.2010

Christmas!

I know this is early, but I just couldn't resist.. Merry Christmas from Will, Beth, Zoe and Lucy!!!

11.18.2010

Ovo

Tonight Will and I are going to see the Cirque du Soleil show Ovo!! I have seen several Cirque shows and I LOVE them so I am super excited to be going to see this one.  If you haven't seen one of their shows before I highly recommend it.  Check out the video below and stay posted to see what we think!

UPDATE: Hotel Group Rate Info

Comfort Inn Photo

Many of you have been asking and I’m finally able to give you lodging details.  I’ve worked out a deal with the Comfort Inn in Griffin for a discounted rate of $65/night.  The rate is the same whether you book a king or double room.  We only have a limited number of rooms so please book yours today

(Please don’t forget to RSVP also!)

NOTE: We are planning to have a shuttle from the hotel to the wedding.  Keep this in mind before deciding to book somewhere else.

Shuttle update:

There isn’t going to be a shuttle.  Apologies for being misleading.  It was causing too many weird scheduling issues at the wedding site so we decided to can the idea

Details:

Comfort Inn & Suites
1906 North Expressway
Griffin, GA  30223

Reservation line: 770.233.4747

PLEASE CALL THE RESERVATION LINE ABOVE!  The hotel staff are aware of the special rate for our wedding.  If you book online or call the generic Comfort Inn number you will not be able to take advantage of this rate.

11.17.2010

So you wanna RSVP?

rsvpGreat!! We hope you can make it.  Hopefully you saw this in your invitation - but in case you didn't here is what we want you to do.

You can RSVP via email at rsvp@willandbethburke.com or via phone at (404) 981-5616.  Just let us know your name, if you can or cannot make it, and the number of people are coming with you.

11.15.2010

Griffin Daily News

Our final newspaper announcement aired on Sunday.  We are no longer scheduled to show in any engagement announcement sections.  This is a copy of what was printed in the Griffin Daily News on Sunday, November 14, 2010.

[caption id="attachment_302" align="aligncenter" width="340" caption="Griffin Daily News"]Griffin Daily News[/caption]

11.14.2010

When Harry Met Sally

[caption id="attachment_299" align="alignleft" width="164" caption="When Harry Met Sally"]When Harry Met Sally[/caption]

I think that Billy Crystal had it right when he told Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally...."When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible."

I totally understand that feeling.

11.11.2010

Good times in B-town

I wrote 90% of this post several days ago and hated it.  Then the week started and I got busy so… I’m just going to post it as is.  Sorry it reads like a play-by-play but I didn’t want to wait a month before posting.

Well, we spent the whole long weekend in Bainbridge and had an excellent time.  Beth got to meet LOTS of folks and even got an “A” on the ride-home “name remembering” quiz.  It may not have seemed like it but she WAS paying attention.  It took her a while to get all the names straight (Kenneth is NOT married to Susan Smile ) but she has my family down way better than I have hers!

Thursday night we spent some time hanging out with Mom and Dad – it’s hard to beat a roaring fire and homemade pizza.  Friday afternoon we took Beth in to town for BBQ and around Dad’s office to meet my third family – Mrs. Polly, Dr. Robinson, Thea (the other Thea), Vicki, Debbie, and Kathy.  Friday night Dad fired up the Big Green Egg and cooked up some excellent Burke Beef steaks – yummy.  Later on Beth and I went out to Piper and Jaad’s house where Beth met a few of my Bainbridge friends which was fun.

Saturday we Beth helped Dad with some website marketing stuff while I ate Mom’s raw cookie dough.  That night we had a great time sitting around the fire hanging out with the Kirbo’s (times 2), the Tyson’s, and the Hobby’s.  Thank goodness for cold weather and dry firewood.  Oh yea, and I can’t forget to mention Mom’s homemade Jambalaya.  It was awesome.

On Sunday Beth got to meet ALL the in-town Burke’s at Sunday dinner complete with a roast, sweet tea, and cream corn (etc).  Beth really enjoyed the family and managed to not burp or drool at all during the meal which was an amazing feat all by itself.  On the way home we stopped by the Willis’ for some more BBQ and I finally got to meet “Aunt” (Beth's Aunt Nancy).

Will

Pike County Journal

Another newspaper announcement was made yesterday in the Pike County Journal Reporter.  Yep, we're famous.

But, they spelled my name wrong!  Obviously they had not seen one of my favorite movies, Anne of Green Gables and I quote "...if you're going to call me Anne, would you please be sure to spell it with an 'e'?...Print out A-N-N, it looks absolutely dreadful, but Anne with an 'e' is quite distinguished. So, if you only call me Anne with an 'e', I'll try to reconcile myself to not being called Cordelia."

Pike County AnnouncementPhoto by Anna Kinchen Photography

11.10.2010

Family

Well you will be relieved to know that I survived my first trip to Bainbridge and yes, the wedding is still on.  Thankfully it didn't turn out to be like a remake of Meet The Parents, even though I did get a tad of a bug while I was there and had one of my famous throw up spells. (Sorry!)  I am so lucky to have met someone that shares the love of his family that I have for mine.  Family is very important to me and some people do not have the closeness that my family has.  I talk to my parents at least once a day, we get together not only for holidays but sometimes just because we want to see each other. Will also has a very close-knit family and I just love that!  I have heard that when you marry someone you aren't just marrying the other person, but you are also marrying their family.  I am glad to say that I had a great time with my new family and can't wait to meet the rest of them.

11.04.2010

Bainbridge Bound!

Currently in the car on the way to Bainbridge, my hometown. I can't wait to see friends and family and of course for dad to meet Beth. Pictures and details to come soon! If you are in town we hope to see you there.

11.03.2010

Our version..

[caption id="attachment_260" align="alignleft" width="640" caption="Trees at Piedmont Park taken by Anna Kinchen"][/caption]

You may have seen this picture on our engagement session link and wondered why we are holding this picture (or at least who the picture is).  Well the picture is of my Grandmother and Paw-Paw Willis from right around the time they were married.  In college I took a photography class and found some old negatives in my Grandmother's house.  I took the negatives, developed them and found some pictures that even my Grandmother had never even seen!  My Grandmother and I now have an album full of old pictures that I still cherish to this day.  This picture happens to be one of my favorites from the album.  Will suggested that we take the picture with us to our shooting session and ask Anna if we could mimic it.  I was immediately on board and just fell in love with the idea.  (I guess I'll keep that boy around for a while-he's just full of great ideas)  We showed it to Anna and she also loved the idea and we headed for the trees to create our version.

Don't tell my Grandmother (she doesn't have a computer in case you are wondering)  I plan on framing this picture and giving it to her for Christmas.

Miss Willis to wed Mr. Burke

Our first official engagement announcement was published today in the Bainbridge local paper, The PostSeachlight.  Here is a link to the announcement

Rodney and Debbie Willis of Williamson, Ga., announce the engagement of their daughter, Elizabeth Anne Willis, to William Burke of Bainbridge.

ENGAGED: Elizabeth Anne Willis and William Burke
The bride-elect is the granddaughter of Mae Willis of Williamson, the late Herbert Willis and of the late Myrl Grant and Perry Grant.

She is a 2001 graduate of Pike County High School and of North Georgia College and State University with a degree in computer science. She is self-employed.

The future groom is the son of Dean and Thea Burke of Bainbridge and grandson of Betty Larson of Jasper, Ga., the late Patricia and Dewey Lawrence Burke and the late Harold Inman Hall.

Mr. Burke graduated from Bainbridge High School in 2001 and from Kennesaw State University with a degree in accounting. He is employed by Element Funding in Sandy Springs, Ga.

The wedding is planned for Jan. 1, 2011, at Strickland’s General Store in downtown Concord, Ga., at 6 p.m. Invitations will be sent.

Engagement Pictures Sneak Peak

[caption id="attachment_252" align="alignright" width="199" caption="Fox Theatre taken by Anna Kinchen"][/caption]

We had our engagement pictures taken on Saturday, October 30.  It was SO much fun!! The morning started off kinda crazy, I couldn't figure out what to wear so I had to call in the troops (best friends, Katie and LT) for some help in picking out clothes to

[caption id="attachment_250" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Piedmont Park Picture by Anna Kinchen"][/caption]

wear.  They calmed me down and Will and I were on our way to make our first pictures at Piedmont Park. We weren't too sure what to expect or where all we were going to go but as soon as we arrived at the park we meet Anna and began shooting right away.  To all the people in the park that day - you are welcome for the free entertainment.  Taking pictures in very public places is a little embarrassing because everyone is looking at you, watching every move and smiling.  From the big field we went over to the dock, from the dock over to the pavilion, then under some trees (which I will blog about later).  Then we packed up and

[caption id="attachment_251" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="The dock at Piedmont Park taken by Anna Kinchen"][/caption]

moved to Inman Park area where we took a few shots at the beginning of the Beltline.  From there we went to the Krog Steet Tunnel and Krog Street where we were able to take some

[caption id="attachment_253" align="alignright" width="199" caption="54 Columns taken by Anna Kinchen"][/caption]

industrial shots with some graffiti and ivy walls.  We took some at the 54 Columns art structure and at the Jackson Street bridge with the beautiful skyline.  We were also able to take one at the Fox!  Last night Anna told us that she put some of the pictures up on her blog and we will get the others in about three weeks.  You can check out some of the other pictures here a: Will + Beth engagement session with Anna Kinchen
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