After my “HELP!!” blog a few days ago, i got some links & ideas from various people for The Engagement Shoot … I had a look at the sites recommended, and found a bunch of really nice stuff :D

There was a suggestion that we take the beagles to the shoot – but I’m not totally sold on that idea… dont get me wrong, you all know how much a ADORE my boys – but they are quite a handful… and we are going to a place we haven’t explored before, so I’m a bit nervous to take them along… BUT i was thinking, maybe later in the year we can do a “family” shoot – the 4 of us at a nice park or something… I’d like that a lot!! :)

Anyway… back to the task at hand …

I saved a couple of pics that I really like – for some reference etc… hmmm, is this like the start of wedding planning?? eeek!! i don’t need to be thinking of that kinda stuff! Sheesh!

Oh well… here are some snippets of photos i liked :) … there’s not really a particular “feel” that i like more than another – i seem to like everything – the fun shots, tender/romantic and the more abstract stuff…

Off Christine Meintjies site, I really loved this shoot – particularly the pics of the couple lying in the grass: (more on the site)


Off Rock ‘n Roll Bride I liked this fun pic


I found a lot of sweet, romantic tender pics…

I really like this one off Rock ‘n Roll Bride (I think its my favourite pic i found)


also off Rock ‘n Roll Bride – i like how it looks so natural, not posed at all… like the photographer snuck up on them :)


Then, I like these more abstract type ones too:

Rock ‘n roll bride (Thanks Angel, I think I’m becoming addicted!)


I think this is super cute


Then, we must get a couple of shots of the #Sparkly!! Most of the shots i could find are REALLY cheesy… like her hand resting lovingly on his… I mean, I know that the whole idea probably is quite lame… but i managed to find a few that weren’t that awful ;)

This one is a little cheesy, but not too bad, hey?


This one I like – it’s different and something new


and then this one is a lovely shot – maybe it would look cheesy if the ring wasnt so pretty ;) but u can almost see the movement here – it doesn’t look staged – which is cool.


And then, Jeanette sent me some links of shoots that couples did with their dogs :)

- like i said, maybe we’ll do that later in the year – I would really like to!!

Take a look at the doggy-friendly engagement shoots here, here and here… it looks like it could be a lot of fun… but The Beagles are quite naughty little buggers sometimes…! But ever so photogenic! :)

So – I’m really looking forward to the shoot… which is just over a week away. Thanks to everyone who commented and sent me some inspiration :D much appreciated!!

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I’m starting this post in Mid-Jan 2010, but will only post it around the end of Jan…

I don’t usually do New Years Resolutions… but I want to make a list of things to work towards, and hopefully get them to become a habit and part of my life. It may be boring to read, it’s mostly for my own benefit and to serve as a reminder – so feel free to skip it :)

2010 resolution-type-things:

  1. I want to try a new recipe once a month. I am rather unimaginative in my cooking, and i often read delicious recipes on philly_girl’s blog which i always mean to try – and never do!
  2. I must sit up straight and keep my shoulders back. They say that standing straight makes you look thinner (and is obviously better for you)
  3. I want to have my hair cut more often. It looks and feels so good, and is so much easier to manage. I’m aiming for every 6 to 8 weeks (like a normal person… not every 4 months!)
  4. Who doesn’t wanna lose a bit of weight!?
  5. I must work hard at promoting my business and getting it off the ground PROPERLY.
  6. With regards to work…  I’d love to get a new Website Design job at least every 2 months (more often would be awesome, but let’s not aim too high!)
  7. *sigh* i need to be more patient and not lose my temper for small things.
  8. I would really like to go on an Adobe Illustrator course this year
  9. More of a goal for THIS year… planning on going on a big holiday this year – I’m keeping more details under wraps for now
  10. I would like to do a mini detox once a month (or maybe every second month)… this is a tough one, as i have NO self control with food… but I can notice a difference in my body and my skin when I cut out sugar and processed stuff… I will try :)

So… there you I have it. Some things to work towards this year.

Wish me luck!!

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I’ve seen this on lotsa people’s blogs… The first one I read was Laura-Kim’s and I decided to come back and do it just before New Year…

so here goes:

1. What did you do in 2009 that you’d never done before?
I turned 27 – it was the first time I’ve done that!
I bought a house
I grew a wrinkle… from a smooth smooth forehead.
I got engaged!!

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions and will you make more for next year?

I don’t normally make New Year’s Resolutions, so I probably didn’t do any last year.
Will I make NYR this year…? Ummm – I need to work on my patience

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
One of Peter’s friends had a little baby boy

4. Did anyone close to you die?

5. What countries did you visit?
Thigh-Land and Singapore

6. What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2009?
More patience
More clients
Less internal tension

7. What date, from 2009, will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Definitely 24 December 8pm-ish :) why…? read this

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Is buying a house an achievement? I guess so :)

9. What was your biggest failure?
When I burnt chocolate chip cookies ;)

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Um, no… not even flu! I had a little cold once this past year, and I had my foot slammed in a door by an Asian in Thigh-land

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Our House, for Shizzle. My other favourite thing I got this year is my Blackberry…. But I didn’t *buy* it – it’s on contract

12. Whose behaviour merited celebration?
Is it wrong of me to say that I’m really proud of my beagles and all they have achieved this year? I really am so proud of those little 4-legged pooches <3 From their agility to their hunting achievements.
And, also, as usual, Peter continued to amaze me with his endless patience with me, especially on those days when I was particularly down. I remember one day, very early in the year – something small went wrong and i LOST it… i was in hysterical tears and angry and sad and furious all at once – complete nut job! He got me into the shower to try and calm me down… and I just stood there and sobbed and shook and sobbed and shook… he climbed into the shower with me (i think he even had his clothes on) and just held me really tight and stroked my back and head. I don’t think I will ever forget that. Not many No man will ever understand a woman when she is being completely irrational and crazy… but there are a select few who will *try* to understand and *try* to fix it.

13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
Shoo – i can’t think of anyone off-hand – i’m in a good head space at the moment and love everyone… can I come back to this on a darker day?

14. Where did most of your money go?
The deposit for the house completely emptied all my savings :)

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Lots of stuff – small stuff mostly.
I remember the night before our first beagle hunt for the season this year, I couldn’t sleep!
I was SUPER excited to go on holiday to Banana Beach (KZN South Coast) for my Birthday with some of my favourite peeps… Peter, Snowgoose and The Ginger.
I am always EXCEPTIONALLY excited to come home after going to Thigh-Land!

16. What song will always remind you of 2009?
Sherbet… that’s a tricky one! Maybe Taylor Swift…

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
Happier or sadder? Happier!!
Thinner or fatter? Fatter
Richer or poorer? I probably have more money in my bank account than I did… but I also have a lot more debt!

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Swam… not that I have a pool.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Lost my temper for silly things – gotta work that one out.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
Well… Christmas Eve was with my stukkie and The Sparkly!
Christmas Day was with my Future-Family-in-Law
Boxing Day was with my family at my brother’s house
The 27th was lunch with newly made friends and Pinocchio at the Theatre!

21. How will you be spending New Year?
NYE will be a braai at home – looking after the beagles (closing their ears for the fireworks). We haven’t invited anyone over… so if you want a braai and some Rock Band goodness… give me a shout!!

22. Did you fall in love in 2009?
Numerous times :)

23. How many one-night stands?
A few -  always with the same hottie though!!

24. What was your favourite TV programme ?
Lost, Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice and anything on Series Channel on Friday night between 7 and 9pm (bachelor, Project Runway, Tim Gunn etc etc)

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Hate is a strong word! – i am very annoyed with people…

26. What was the best book you read?
I read the Twilight Saga this year – pretty enjoyable.
And I re-read one of my favourite books again this year – The Autumn Castle

27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
I am really liking Taylor Swift! And i am SO happy that Boys like Girls released a new album… AND they did collaboration with Taylor Swift!!

28. What did you want and get?
To make it through the year in one piece ;)

29. What did you want and not get?
A six-Pack :)

30. What was your favorite film of this year?
Oh hell – i suck at remembering movies!! Harry Potter was this year right? That was cool.
I also enjoyed New Moon
And Up.

31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
My birthday was The Shiz!! I turned 27 and was at the coast with my fave peeps… Peter, Heidi and Shaun. Day at the beach and Heidi made us pasta for dinner – eaten on the little stoepie listening to the ocean. There was wine too… and presents. Was really great – thanks guys!!! x

32.What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
If I had the balls to do my own thing – work wise… but there is next year for that!!

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2009?
Comfortable and not very elegant!

34. What kept you sane?
My Stukkie for sure!!

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Wow – Taylor Lautner is HOTT!!!! But is like 10 years younger than me, and still a teenager, which is totally embarrassing!

36. What political issue stirred you the most?
Meh – i’m not into politics… Barack Obama was made The Pres this year wasn’t he? That was pretty big.

37. Who did you miss?
Most days – no one… but sometimes i miss my sisters… although, Facebook makes it easier to stay in touch, and I love reading my sister’s blog!!

38. Who was the best new person you met?
Hmmm, I’m afraid no-one new made a really huge impression on me… BUT there are quite a few people who I met last year, from Beagle Hunting, who we have become a lot closer to… and I am looking forward to building real friendships with them!

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2009.

When you have too much of family – it is a bad thing.
And playing Rock Band with my friends makes me happy!! – is that a life lesson? It should be!

40. Quote that sums up your year.

2009 – year of the house, the wrinkle and the sparkly!


so… my sisters have been hounding me on Facebook for all the gory details etc about the events that took place on Christmas eve, 24 December, 2009 … at about 8pm :)

I suspected NOTHING! Getting married is something Peter and I have spoken about once or twice… but at the last count the consensus was “when we have more money” … which is certainly not now, as we just bought a house!

So, anyway… i was carrying along with my life very merrily, trying my best not to attack everyone who keeps hassling me with the “so when are you guys getting married” questions… It isn’t something I have given too much though to, and I never expected that I would have to give it any thought for a while to come!

So, come Christmas eve… Peter decided that we would have a nice quiet evening at home, just the two of us (and the beagles) … as Christmas day was gonna be with his family, and Boxing Day with my family… I didn’t think spending the evening at home was suspicious at all! I am not one of those people who gets all into the Christmas spirit and stuff (Peter is very much that kind of person tho!) … so I thought this was for my benefit – a compromise… quiet at home, and then two days of crazy family stuff.

So, he bought a little leg of lamb from Woolies, and some veggies and salad and dessert etc… I went to jump in the bath, and when I got out, the table was all beautifully set: (ok, it looked way better in real life!!)


Our dinner was delicious… i was so full (and full of wine too!).

Peter had also decided that we would open 2 presents each on Christmas eve… and the other one the next morning (we each had 3 prezzies, so it worked out well :) ) … the deal was: I could choose one from him for me, and he would choose the other one for me from him (and visa versa).

I chose a super light one that I had been eyeing out for days… it was quite biggish and the weight of a feather! He chose for me a “set of presents” to open… he said the 3 boxes were all part of one present that went together in an order: green box, red box, white box (they were also very light)… so I opened my first present that I chose and it’s a nice leather pouch for my Blackberry :) yay – i have been wanting a nice pouch since i got the phone.


so, i can’t remember the exact way things went down after that… but then it was my turn to open my set of 3 presents…

first box was quite big, and sounded like cereal when i shook it… i opened it up, and inside was a keyring with pink ducks on, a gold beaded bookmark and 3 little christmas tree decorations – silver presents about the size of a matchbox – just square. Interesting,…. a keyring and a bookmark. I was a little dissappointed, I wont lie! peter is usually really good at getting me awesome presents, but he has had a few bad ones (like the time i got a pen for christmas a few years back).

so, next present was a slightly smaller box… opened it up – 3 candles – star shaped and covered in red glitter … weird. and another 2 silver present decorations. he says to me “the candles are for your bathroom”…. i say “thanks honey”… but think to myself – ummm, my bathroom is PINK – why do u get me RED candles…??

next present… open up, and its 2 more silver present decorations. wow – great – i got tree decorations for christmas! then he says to me, look, one present is heavier than the others… and gives it to me. I unwrap it:


now i’m a little nervous as i am guessing it’s jewellery, and well… our taste in jewellery is VERY VERY different – although, the last few pairs of earrings he bought me were really nice.

I open it up and see this:


now i am confused… it is looking at me with all sparklies and bling and i’m thinking it looks really expensive and stuff… and suspiciously like a You-Know-What-Ring… but it can’t be!!?!??  I have no idea what i did or said… but he took the open box, got down on his knee and said the magical words… “Tanya de Ville, will you marry me…?” – again, I dont know what i did or said – other than sitting there staring at him with a bit of a frown – i was totally confused (too much wine maybe? yes, let’s go with that!)
Eventually he got a yes out of me – when i found my voice! :) he he! and then he asked me which hand it goes on, coz for the life of him, he has never known and probably never will know! <3

so – yes, the ring is HUGE and sparkly and beautiful! it would be something i would have looked at in a shop, but glanced over very quickly and gone for something smaller and plainer – but it is beautiful!!! one big-ass round diamond in the middle, with 3 smaller (note i say smaller, and not small – as even the smaller ones are big!) diamonds on either side…

It’s elegant and classical and shiny and wonderful. oh, and it fits!! can you believe it! it actually fits my fat sausage fingers! like a glove… no, *better* than a glove! :)


so – that is the story of the sparkly!!

Thanks to everyone for all the twitter and facebook love :)

and thanks to my stukkie, who is amazing beyond belief. Anything, everything and more that any girl could possibly want! Kind, funny, generous, caring, loving, patient, gentle, strong, sensitive, motivated, understanding, supportive,  friendly, interested and interesting, hard-working, fun-loving, Tanya-loving… oh, and he is really handsome too!! I love you honey bunch… so very much xxx thank you for everything!