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Vendor Review: Mac's Liquor

19 May

Grade: (Solid) A

As you probably are aware, it’s been awhile since my last post.

That said, I had a few jobs to do for the wedding and thought I’d get the ball rolling on the reviews of our vendors from the wedding.  I know the Bride is prepping several more of these, but I’ve got time on my hands.  Plus, I could talk about beer all day.

We used Mac’s Liquor in Hopkins for all our beer.  Mac’s is right off Highway 169 and Excelsior Boulevard.

The service at Mac’s was fantastic.  They always called back when they said they would and they worked with us to come up with options based on what we wanted. 

The trick for us was that our site required 3.2 beer.  Many vendors told us they didn’t carry it or only had a limited supply, but Mac’s went the extra mile, called their reps and gave us a whole host of options (Blue Moon comes in 3.2!!!).  We might have even snuck a keg of regular stuff in there, but… of course we didn’t….

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The other real differentiator  for Mac’s was the flexible and inexpensive keg delivery, which was a HUGE relief during the morning of the wedding.  Finding a vendor who delivers kegs, much less at an affordable price, was not easy.

Mac’s prices are right in line with most of the liquor stores around the metro.  The cost was much less than we thought it would be and the delivery charge was pretty much negligible (I’m tight fisted on tipping vendors and I tipped our delivery guy because it was so cheap).

Mac’s does offer to pick the kegs up, but it wasn’t necessary.  I can’t say enough about how nice it was to work with a vendor that was responsive, courteous and delivered on their promises.  As you’ll learn, that wasn’t always the case….. 

Stay tuned to find out how it all went.

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Living The Sweet Life

29 Feb

All I could think of the moment I put in notice at my old job was getting some time off without work nagging in the back of my mind. I was obsessed with a week at home with the pup and the BTB.

I had a whole list of things I was going to do…

*Watch a few movies

*Catch a few college basketball games

*Spend some QT with the BTB and the puppy

*Catch up with a few people

Now, the week has come and, for the most part, gone. I’ve managed to get in a half a basketball game, watch *A* movie and have found a new job. I’ve managed to spent lots of time playing with and training the pup (on a side note, you should see our little girl ring a bell to tell us when she has to pee. I’m a proud papa indeed.).

I’ve also spent time filling requests for my lovely bride-to-be. I’ve grocery shopped, painted a closet and “gotten organized.”

Transitioning from the life of a bachelor to the life of a (more or less) married man isn’t going to be easy. Where did this week go???

This Puppy is THE BEST

23 Feb

The poop patrol marches on, my friends.

We’ve been talking about a number of methods for training our little Stella, but the focus of the work has been on potty training.  She seems to get that she’s supposed to go outside by now.  She also seems to want to hold it for when we let her out.  That said, she’s still having issues with letting us know.

We’ve decided to teach her to use a bell that is attached to the door and we’re finding a little success.  I still think it’s a coincidence right now and that she’s really ringing the bell just for fun.  Let me tell you though, there’s nothing more exciting than watching your puppy poop after she uses the tools to let you know.

Potty training is tiring, but trust me, it’s rewarding.  If anyone has any tricks of the trade, let me know about ’em because I’m actually enjoying this.

New Hobby

19 Feb

I love our puppy. I do. She’s cute, she makes me laugh and she’s very laid back.

This is a drawback though, she’s a pooping machine. I swear she expels more than she intakes and the timing is completely unpredictable.

So, I spent most of my time at home on Sunday on poop patrol. Any time she got remotely close to her “poop stance” I would yell and jump up out of my chair.

I put up a new rod in the closet… with one eye on the pup.

We watched some family guy… with one eye out for a squat.

I talk to the BTB… while I determine if the sniffing is merely searching for treats or a lead-up to something more smelly.

Never in my life have I spent more time talking about the act of pooping. Never in my life have I celebrated the act of pooping more. Never in my life have I scolded a living being for not properly pooping.

Long story short, I have a new hobby and it’s puppy poop watching.

Momma Said There'd Be Days Like This

13 Feb

Bad days are the worst.  No one likes having a bad day and when you’re in the middle of one, it seems like every little thing is just another step into the gloominess that is an awful day.

What really sucks though is when you and your beloved end up having a bad day on the same day.   I mean, after your boss basically wastes your entire day because he’s avoiding his work and you don’t get any answers to the questions you most need answered, how can you come home, look your better half in the face and say, “Oh, don’t worry, everything is going to be fine?”

I’ve decided that the only thing worse than having a bad day is not being able to help cheer up the one you love after they have a rough one.  Anyone have any “old faithful” tactics?  Anyone got any tips on ways to always cheer up the one you love?

I’m desperate.

Pack Rat

7 Feb

OK, I admit it. I have a problem. I can’t stop, I can’t control it and I need help. I’m desperate for a 12 step program thatold_dresser.jpg can save me from myself and this addiction.

I love stuff. Lots o’ stuff. Oodles of it.

I don’t know what it is. I see a sturdy box and I think to myself, “Self, now there’s something that’s just plain going to come in handy.” Who knows when I’ll be moving next? Who knows when I’ll have a gift to give that would fit perfectly into a box that size? I’ve got a whole basement now, surely there’s enough space to save this until I find a need for it, right?

I also have a hard time saying good-bye. Call me sentimental, but that dresser I’ve had since before I can remember was a good friend and hurt a little to just throw out in the cold while it waited for someone to claim it from the alley. The poor guy deserved better.

But, she’s moving in and I’ve got to find a way to make her feel welcome.  I also need to make space for her. She’s been amazing about downsizing the amount of stuff she has so it’s only fair that I do the same.

So, goodbye, old friend. You served my brother and I well throughout the years. You’ll be missed.

Superbowl Parties As A Couple

7 Feb

When I was single, I never watched football with more than 1 or 2 people. Even then, when I did, I arrived with, at a minimum, a six pack in one arm and a bag of chips in the other. The event was simple, everyone was guaranteed a good seat and the focus was on the game. Rude comments about the refs and players you dislike weren’t just tolerated, they were encouraged.

Now, I go to superbowl parties. This was a first for me. We arrived with nothing to drink, stuffed mushrooms and pickles wrapped in ham and cream cheese (don’t knock it until you try it… really).

The girls nearly outnumbered the guys which means a few things:

1) I felt like a jackass the two times I yelled at… the TV. Yeah, I’m that guy.

2) I gave up on hearing the announcers. A closet favorite hobby of mine is ripping on the poor saps in the booth.

3) The commercials were ruined due to the chatter level.

4) Most of the conversation focused on Justin Timberlake and explanations of what “Bud Bowl” was.  Yes, you heard that right, there were actually several people at the party who had never heard of the bud bowl.

I think the only benefit of the party was that because of the largely female crowd, very few people questioned the fact that I wasn’t drinking at the party. I also wasn’t ridiculed for being on the south beach diet. That said, a big part of me missed watching a football game and not taking crap for being completely whipped. As a man, I need that from time to time. I thrive on being ripped on by a couple of my buddies.

I remain baffled as to what all this means. I think it might take me months to fully understand…

Photographer World Tour

31 Jan

OK, this has officially gotten out of hand. I’m in over my head and I’m burning out on wedding crap.

Last weekend I had some errands to run and I was none too excited about it. Little did I know, that was nothing. This coming weekend we’ve got a small tour of the state planned and all we’re planning to accomplish is finding a photographer.

This is all because the BTB is a researcher. You give her a topic and she’ll know everything about it in a matter of minutes. I swear she could find your name without you even telling her. I should have known I’d end up reviewing every web site devoted to weddings before this was over.

So, after hours of research, we’re visiting with 5 different photographers. FIVE. We’re going to Shakopee, Roseville and Lakeville. If you don’t know where any of those places are, don’t worry, neither do I. I shouldn’t have to. I live in Minneapolis. Everything I need is in Minneapolis.

When my friends ask me what I did for superbowl weekend, I’m going to lie. I have no other choice.

Marketing Plan

31 Jan

I’ve gotta hand it to these guys, they’ve got it figured out.

The BTB has been bombarding me with web sites, options and more options. I’ve looked over cakes, photographers, fabrics, and food. I’ve discussed what will hang from the ceilings and the best style of dress. I’ve glossed over more times than I can count and we’re just getting started.

Long story short, I’m lost.

One thing I know for sure though is that these sites and stores all have one thing in common. They all focus on her and it’s obvious in every little thing I look at.

The photographers have songs about love and romance on their sites. They have more pictures of the bride’s shoes than they do of the groomsmen.

The men’s wedding bands are practically hidden and the bookstores pile up books with flowers and lace on the covers. Hell, even the caterers focus on foods that women typically like.

I’m trapped. I have no way out. It really was over before it even started.  She’s in seventh heaven and I’ve fallen into the seventh circle of hell.

Still Working On That Ring

30 Jan

I’ve been told I tend to be methodical.  It’s a nasty habit of mine that I tend to drag things out longer than they need to be.  I can’t help that I like to be thorough and like to follow-through on things when I know I’m ready and I’ve done my homework.

Friends have told me that they bought their ring, more or less, overnight.  I’ve heard the stories of shopping in a day and buying the following day.  I’ve heard of friends who basically just got quotes and went with the best one.

I just can’t help that I’d never be able to do something like that.  I want to be sure.  I don’t want to think I cut a corner or that I didn’t ask for something I should have.  I’ve had buyer’s remorse enough in the past to know I don’t want it again.

So, I’m making Landmark work for our money.  I’m making them do every step I’ve read about and every step they’ve offered up.  I’m going to ensure that I get the ring we both have in mind without her even knowing what she wants.

My apologies, Brian, but you’re going to have to keep jumping through these hoops.  You’re going to have to fulfill my every last request until you’ve convinced me that this ring will be what I have in my head.

So far, I can’t complain a bit.  So far…