You’ve arrived at monorailmike.com, the personal website of Mike Devine since 2001.
My apologies for being way
behind on this site. Stay tuned for stories and photos from my amazing wedding
, honeymoon in Hawaii and San Francisco, and plenty of other adventures since then!
In the meantime, check out my professional site at mikedevine.com
Apr. 21, 2012
In the spirit of spring cleaning, I’ve finally made some long overdue changes to this site.
I’ve removed some older and rarely updated sections, including links to other blogs, a list of my favorite albums, and a page dedicated to Penn State football. The previous teal color scheme in the headers and navigation is now a more neutral light gray. I’ve also simplified the layout of the archives index, and updated the previous “Credits” page as a more concise page called “Colophon.” Among the navigation graphics, I’ve increased the text spacing for better legibility, and added some external links for good measure.
I’m hoping to implement a more large-scale overhaul later this year. At a minimum, I need to update the current table-based layout (which has its origins in a redesign from December 2003, believe it or not!) to allow for easier maintenance. But I’m also still thinking about moving this site to a blogging platform (perhaps WordPress or Squarespace) along with a cleaner design.
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Apr. 15, 2012
Within about two weeks after Joan and I got engaged in December 2010, friends and relatives started asking us, “So, have you picked a date yet?”
I was grateful that our loved ones were excited for us and wanted to hear about our plans, but to me, that question was absurd. With so many options to pick from — and having not cheated by looking at venues before getting engaged, like many overeager young couples these days — how could we possibly coordinate a date for a church and reception venue that fast?
At this point, with less than a month to go before our wedding (which is truly hard to believe), folks are asking us, “So, with the big day coming up in a few weeks, you guys are basically done with the plans, right?”
Well, let’s see. We’re still working on a few remaining items with the local print shop (menus, place cards, table numbers, and thank-you cards), and I will design and print the wedding ceremony programs at home. Joan and I are looking forward to a lunch with my parents this week at Trattoria Giuseppe, the venue for our rehearsal dinner, where we’ll finalize the menu selections. And we still need to finalize our playlist for the band, buy some gifts for our parents, nail down some details for the honeymoon, and of course, figure out the seating arrangement for approximately 200 guests.
These are all good things, mind you. I’m the luckiest guy in the world to marry someone like Joan, and it’s going to be a truly wonderful day. I’m glad that we’ve been able to work so well together on the plans, and I simply can’t imagine a bride doing everything herself. But there are plenty of things to do until the very end, so when someone asks if the wedding plans are “basically done,” all I can do is smile and say, “Not quite.”
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Mar. 17, 2012
What a difference five years can make.
My first St. Patrick’s Day party took place back in 2007, which was also the last time that the peak of the Irish holiday season happened to fall on a Saturday. Having only hosted one other large gathering (a housewarming party in late 2004), I left a few too many preparations to the last minute, and a freak mid-March winter storm added to the challenge. Somehow, I managed to pull it off, but it was definitely hard to do everything myself.
I’ve learned plenty of valuable lessons since that inaugural bash, and I’m incredibly grateful to have my wonderful fiancée, Joan, as my co-host for the third straight year. Some earlier planning and unusually warm weather helped us get a head start, and I finally opted to have several massive 40-pound bags of ice delivered to the house. The order was worth every penny, including a well-earned tip.
And compared to our ongoing wedding plans — a process that basically involves working on a dozen detail-oriented projects at once — hosting a St. Patrick’s Day party is downright simple. This year’s event was another success, and we’re already looking forward to the next one in 2013, which will be our first party as a married couple!
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What’s not so new?
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