Thursday, August 16, 2012

Love You Letter

After watching the News 12 NJ clip on Yogi Berra's love letters to his wife before they were married I thought it would be a cute idea to use instead of a wedding sign-in book or even at the bridal shower. Friends and family members are always asked to participate in games and activities, well why not give them a chance to share a fun/loving/fond memory with the bride and groom in the form of a love you letter. 

Almost any office supply store has scroll like printer paper if you wanted to go more vintage love letter, you can choose paper reflecting the couple's theme, or just pretty paper that the bridal party or bride agrees on. You can set up a stand near the guest tables or near the gift table, or simply set up a little kit on each table with instructions. I like the kit idea or a little note per table asking for the guests help creating a LOVE YOU LETTER so that each guest has enough time to think of a memory they want to share.  The bridal party can put all the letters into one album or if the bride and groom approve scan each into a slide show to play at the rehearsal dinner or in an area during the wedding. 

I'm adding the link to the Berra's interview/ report as some inspiration, it is a beautifully amazing story! 

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Big Day Meet & Greet

Meeting and greeting your wedding guest is always something important no matter your venue, location or time of year. How will you do it? Never fear, their are plenty of options when deciding how to say thank you to everyone in attendance.

Receiving Line:
You and your hubby can have a receiving line after the ceremony, greeting everyone on their way out. Even if you are having the ceremony and reception in the same venue chances are you and your bridal party will be exiting for a grand entrance as the party gets started. Simply post up near the exit, smile, hug & be thankful. These people took time out of their day, schedule and own families to be here with you. The receiving line makes it easier on you in the long run. You won't have to go table to table while your party is going on or your food is being served. You may have a few guests who didn't make the ceremony but not nearly same number to meet and greet at the reception.

Cocktail Hour Mingling:
You and the bridal party were ushered off to the bridal suite or out to take pictures at the conclusion of the ceremony, so you opt for the cocktail hour greeting. You still want to give thanks to all of your welcomed guests, but don't want it to impede on your party after you have been introduced as husband and wife. You and hubby mingle with your guests moving section by section through the crowded cocktail hour, snagging some snacks with your guests. The plus is you have your pictures and greetings completed before the main event and you are free to dance the night away! The downside, you might get caught up in chit-chat that keeps you from making your rounds. And inevitably bride and groom are divided while you visit your friends and family and he visits his.

Reception Round Table:
You were not able to have a ceremony receiving line or cocktail hour greeting for one reason or another. No harm, no foul, but now your greetings will be made between your first dance and the end of your big day. You and your groom need to make the rounds to all of your guests or the few remaining you may have not had a chance to greet earlier in the evening. You want to enjoy the dinner you have picked out for your guests, and dance the night away but you have to properly thank everyone in attendance first. You may want to start this as soon as possible, right after the first dance and toast, so you can have time to yourself to enjoy the party you have arranged. If you aren't able to get to everyone in one try, grab a bite to each, resume your greetings when you are finished with dinner or ask the wait staff to set aside your dish for later. And of course you can always politely excuse your self from a long conversation buy being dreadfully hungry with a need to resume your meal.

No matter how you greet your guests or when you choose to do it, formal greets are the polite respectful way of welcoming and thanking your guests for attending your wedding day. You may want to ask the serves to set an additional plate aside regardless for you and your groom, chances are you will be side tracked by the entire event and not eat much during the night no matter how you plan to greet your guests. Whether you pick one and stick to it or combine them it isn't a one size fits all deal. Your plan may go smoothly or have a few hiccups, but being prepared may help relieve some of the greeting pressure & will certainly relieve any grief over missing someone who shared your day.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Weddings on the Go?

I was on Facebook earlier and saw a post from the Knot asking fans how they felt about a "Wedding on Wheels".  It was a picture of "Wedding on Wheels" van. Apparently you can pay $99 for a quick and easy wedding ceremony that comes to you. It is fast, and definitely costs a whole lot less then your average wedding. When I first saw the picture I was upset over it, thinking back to the long drawn out process of wedding preparation I went through and how these couples are missing out on the whole experience. But as I thought of the whole experience it kind of made me go back on my initial feeling. I can't even count the number of times my husband said we should just go away somewhere and get married in a small setting, and that was before the wedding actually happened. Don't get me wrong we were supper happy everyone was there, and had a great time but if this Wedding on Wheels idea would have been brought up when we were getting married who knows where we would have gotten married.
How do you feel about a wedding van that comes to you for $99 ceremony and your done?

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Dress Post-Wedding

Your big day, THE B-I-G day that you have been planning for months or years has finally come and gone. The honeymoon is over and you are coming back to reality of your normal life. You may have a room full of wedding left over items that were instrumental in your big day success story or your living quarters may be filled to the brim with wedding themed items in every nook and cranny. Any which way you have it, your post wedding items probably include many items. One very special post wedding item being your wedding dress. The dress that made the day feel real, the dress you walked down the aisle in, the dress you took your first look photograph in. This special item has sentimental value, and was probably not cheap either. So what do you do with this essential, wedding day item once your big day is done?
I have had my wedding dress in the bag since my husband and I came home after our wedding day weekend. It moved from our old house to our new house in the bag. And has hung in our spare room ever since. I contemplated bringing it to a bridal store to be boxed but have heard so many horror stories about dresses falling apart too long in a box. I guess I am kind of just scared to do the wrong something with my dress, a dress that I fell in love with, a dress that I wore when I finally made my dreams come true. Leaving my dress in the bag hanging in my spare room is obviously NOT the right choice but it is a temporary solution until I can choose what to do.  Most of my family has kept their weddings dresses in boxes in the attic never to be seen again. Some friends and family friends have kept their dresses and had them made into christening outfits for their children and grandchildren.

However, those more traditional solutions may not fit your life and style in today's society. Another more recent alternative is to sell your very special, very perfect wedding dress if you don't have another solution. Yes, it is YOUR wedding dress but why can't it be someone else's perfect, special, wedding day dress too? Think about it. If the only use you have for your wedding dress is to take up space in your closet or attic is it really useful to you or just a waste of space?
In recent years I have heard of more and more wedding dresses being sold on ebay or other online selling sites.  You don't exactly get your money back but if your dress is in good condition you can ear a little extra cash and closet space while making someone else's wedding day dreams come true. In our ever evolving online, tech savvy society almost everyone now has access to the internet. The internet intern provides access to online shopping sites, online decorating tips and much much more. Some tech savvy brides & grooms may have outfitted and decorated their entire wedding using online resources, so why not apply the internet to your latest conundrum...what to do with your dress after the wedding day?

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Sand Art

I took this picture this afternoon while at the beach. I was thinking of changing some of the pictures I have in my living room & just happened to be at the beach today. My husband and I met while I was in college right down the street from the beach. He lived a few towns over at the beach, and when we moved into our first house we were literally at the beach. Our house was on a side street but were were two houses off of the main ocean road with a beautiful view of the beach. We were outside looking at the stars and listening to the ocean, the night my wonderful husband asked me to marry him.  And our engagement pictures were all taken on the beach. With so many amazing memories having been had with the beach as the perfect background I thought it fitting to take a few beach pictures to frame and hang as a reminder.

If you or someone you know is having a beach themed wedding or shower a couple of cute beach pictures in the sand could be the perfect decor. Drawing table numbers in the sand in a heart is a cute way to incorporate your beach theme into your table settings. You can also write simple love or wedding themed words in the sand in place of table numbers. Just be sure to clearly define the lines of your letters or numbers.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Thank YOU: We Reached 500!

I just wanted to share a little about my adventures on Etsy and say thank you to everyone who has helped me reach 500 shop views. I can't express how much I appreciate your support on Etsy, Facebook & of course this blog!

First off, if you don't know what Etsy is, it is a site where people can advertise, buy and sell handmade or vintage products. Their are a lot of really creative people out in the world who have A LOT of talent, and Etsy allows people from all different places post their products for a small fee per product post. The site takes all different types of works of art, and allows each unique artist to display their pieces in their own way by writing their own shop pages, creating covers, and featuring their products.

I found Etsy through a few friend and family member recommendations. After making my first few gift diaper cakes to bring to baby showers I was attending my cousin told me about this awesome site that allows each seller to have their own shop for people to buy their handmade products. She had made a few purchases through Etsy Shops and loved the idea of handmade gifts that you could buy right then and there or custom order to fit your needs, and since each shop owner was different she was able to find the perfect fit for her regarding shipping/timing needs of the products.  I received a few more similar recommendations and decided to check it out.

When I signed up I had very little experience in the area of selling, let alone selling online. The Etsy team was ready and willing to help right from the start. They provided a new seller handbook with advice on creating a shop, keeping true to your style, and how to best feature your talents and products. A little reading and few days down the line my shop was ready for business. I have had my shop open since March of 2012. It doesn't seem like a long time but I am excited to say I have reached my 500th shop view! Through the help of Etsy staff and sellers, my Etsy Teams & Members: Etsy NJ Team,  New Jersey Etsy Team, The Wedding Shop Team,  Etsy Today Team, & Etsy at the Jersey Shore Team. And of course everyone who has shared, liked, favorited, posted, or just visited my Etsy Online Shop, my Facebook page, and this blog!! I have offered a coupon code starting today to celebrate and say thank you for your support & help. Visit my Facebook page for the code & details! :)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Sunday Fun Day Pets

I have two small dogs, a Mini Daschund and a Papillon. They are my fur-children. They make me laugh, smile and I love coming home to them day after day. They meet me at the door, and no matter how bad of a day I am having they are happy to see me. As far back as I can remember I have always had a dog in my life.

We got our first dog when I was 4, a Rottweiler we named Gamble because he got sick right before were were able to bring him home & almost died. Thankfully when we were able to bring him home he was happy and healthy and lived a long life for a large dog. He did everything with us, and we did everything with him. We dressed him up in bathing suits in the summer, and sweaters in the winter. We played tug-o-war with him, he always won even though it was 3 on 1. He pulled us around on our sleigh in the winter. Whatever we ate he ate, where ever we slept he slept.
He was my best friend, and I think I can say the same for my brother & cousin who grew up with us. He was a gentle giant, always protecting and looking out for us. He protected us so well that we couldn't get in trouble in front of him, if anyone raised their voice or got too rough with the rough housing near any one of "his" kids Gamble would jump in the middle and put himself between them and us.
Gamble was my first pet, my first of many chores-though I was so young I couldn't do much. I remember helping feed him, making sure he had water, and helping to give him a bath. Those little things I remember doing with him and for him as a child, a young child built up so I was ready for my next pet, and the pet after that leading into my current fur-children/pets. I couldn't imagine a childhood without my dogs, starting with Gamble. Having him taught me to be gentle, firm yet kind and gave me a sense of responsibility at a young age.
I see my friends children, young children learning the same things with their pets. A close friend's little one is under a year and LOVES their dog. She makes him smile and laugh, and is just as gentle with him as my Gamble was when I was a child. My pets are a part of the family just as much as any other family member & they play a vital role in my life. I hope everyone can have an experience with a pet of any kind like I did and still do with my dogs.