Archive for November, 2011
Your ceremony should be special and unique to you and your groom, and what better way to personalize your ceremony than by incorporating a different reading. The “standards” that you are probably used to hearing are “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?” or “Love is patient, love is kind,” but there are others. These new options chosen by the editors at Brides Magazine might prevent your guests from a quick snooze and keep their attention.
1. Children’s book: All the World
by Liz Garton Scanlon
Excerpt: “Everything you hear, smell, see. All the world is everything…Hope and peace and love and trust, All the world, is all of us.”
by Judith Martin
Excerpt: “Anyone who tries to compete with the rest of the world, demanding to be someone’s sole source of…attention, is asking to be classified as a bore. ‘Why don’t you ever want to talk to me?’ will…never start a satisfactory marital conversation. ‘Guess what?’ will…never fail.”
3. Lyrics: “Wedding Song”
by Bob Dylan
Excerpt: “Oh, cant you see that you were born to stand by my side
And I was born to be with you, you were born to be my bride
You’re the other half of what I am, you’re the missing piece
4. Poem: “I Wrote a Good Omelet”
by Nikki Giovanni
Excerpt: “I wrote a good omelet…and ate a hot poem…after loving you
Buttoned my car…and drove my coat home…in the rain…after loving you.”
5. Prose: “The The Ent and the Entwife” (from The Two Towers)
by J.R.R. Tolkien
Excerpt: “Together we will take the road that leads into the West,
And far away will find a land where both our hearts may rest.”
So now feel free to let the waterworks flow freely. We highly encourage you to research all the full versions of the readings above. And in your pursuit of trying to set your ceremony apart from others, if you find any amazing reads that others should know about (and you’re willing to share), don’t forget to comment back to us and let us know of your off-beat literary finds. As you can see from our short list of suggestions, you never know where you can find meaningful words to express specific sentiments. So go forth and start reading everything a little bit differently. Leave no bumper sticker, kitchen magnet, or school yard song unexamined. Happy reading.
Tags: ceremony readings, non-traditional wedding ceremony, personalizing your ceremony, readings
Posted in Advice, Ceremony, Details, Inspiration | No Comments »
No one can resist the opportunity to mug for the camera when there’s a photo booth in the vicinity, which is why renting a photo booth is sure to make your guests happy. But not all photo booth rental companies are created equal, so here are the perks you absolutely must look for from the photo booth company you hire for your event:
When you’re hiring a photo booth company, you need to make sure that the company will deliver the photo booth and set it up for you at no extra cost. In addition, your photo booth company should assign technicians to your event just to make sure that if there is a glitch with the photo booth, it gets repaired on the spot.
All you really need in order to make a strip of photos memorable is one person with a very good imagination, but props definitely help. Any photo booth rental company you hire should provide your event with a number of props so that your attendees can make their photos as unique as possible. In addition, the booth itself should be technologically equipped so that attendees can view their poses and adjust as necessary. The booth should also offer both color and black and white options.
If you hire a good photo booth rental company, then you should receive a flash drive of the photos taken during the event, as well as the location of those same photos in an online gallery. In addition, the company will work with you to create a logo that’s unique to your event and that is stamped on every photo strip. Finally, the company will present you with a scrapbook at the end of the evening, one that’s full of photos taken at the party and signed by the guests.
If you’re interested in renting a photo booth for your next big event, then call Photo Loco Photo Booth. Photo Loco Photo Booth is a great San Antonio company that offers event photo booth rentals, including wedding photo booth rentals. For more information, call them at (210) 757-0146.Tags: alternative photography, Event Ideas, Favors, photo booths
Posted in Articles, Event Ideas, Favors, Images, Photography | No Comments »
Depending on when your wedding is, you might be feeling the pressure to not over indulge this holiday season. Well rather than deprive yourself of any normal size servings or whip out a scale on the dining room table to measure the perfect 4 ounces, maybe this timely event could be an option for brides and their bridal party.
Trim the Turkey Boot Camp
When: Thursday, November 24th, 2011, beginning at 9:00 a.m.
Where:B3 Body Sculpting and X-Train Fitness Community
917 W. Anderson Ln.
Austin, TX 78757
(512) 789-4268 or
B3 Body Sculpting and X-Train Fitness Community would like to invite you to be their guest at their THANKSGIVING DAY BOOT CAMP!
B3 Body Sculpting and X-Train burn up to 800 calories before you indulge in your Thanksgiving feast. The workout will leave you feeling great and help fight the holiday weight gain.
The cost is just $10 (or $15 for two) and boot camp will begin at 9:00 a.m. — leaving you plenty of time to get home to prepare for your meal.
We’re dying know how awesome this boot camp is, so if you go, drop us a line on our comment section and tell us if you would recommend this to others.Tags: Beauty, fitness, health, planning
Posted in Articles, Beauty, Bridal Events, Fitness, Planning | No Comments »
Common Wedding Budget Question
- Yes, some parents are hands off. But if your parents are springing for the entire day, ask which parts they like to oversee and present them with your five top choices, vendors, etc.
- Yes, gather photos you’re using as inspiration and any vendor estimates you’ve received. With your fiancé, explain to your family how much you can afford and in a gracious and non-threatening tone ask whether they would consider paying for a specific aspect of the wedding, cake, photography, etc.
- This is one of those few times in life when it’s not taboo to ask about money. A couple of solutions: ask parents to send payments to vendors; explain you are getting a grip on your budget.
- Yes, where there’s a bill, there’s probably some sort of surcharge. Always ask vendors about taxes and other charges. Make sure the final contract has a break-down of all the fees.
- Look for unexpected sources. If you live near a fashion design or culinary school, search on its bulletin board or contact the career services department to find a student who can replicate a designer bridal gown. Finally, when you meet with, say a caterer, bring along a reminder of some wedding expenses you feel more passionate about then food, such as photography. You’ll be less likely to splurge that way.
- Yes, but know that professionals are put off by low-balling newbies and may be glad to haggle rather than lose your business. Your best bet? Be frank about your budget and find out if there’s any way vendors can perform services for that amount. Be careful, you get what you pay for.
- Yes, if you are spending a pretty penny. Wedding insurance is smart. It covers you when something goes awry like a damaged dress or a flooded venue. Policies range from about $100 to $1,300 and can be purchased online at wedsafe.com or protectmywedding.com.
Posted in Budget, Details, General info., Photography, Planning | No Comments »
The end of this week is here, and my mind has already begun to think about preparations for next week’s Thanksgiving food fest. Yesterday the royal announcement came over the intercom that Heavenly Gourmet was catering lunch for us, to which a thunderous round of applause ensued. Have I told you how much we love those days? Especially when your stomach starts growling at 10:35 am and you swear the clock on the wall is actually going backwards.
Without fail, lunch arrived, and we eagerly stood in the proximity of our kitchen cheering on the deliverer. The aromas coming from the giant chafing pans was torture. Forks in hands, a couple of us were giddy at the mere idea of them getting ready to peel back the foil for us. To our delight, there was a heavenly chicken dish, turkey dish, and melt in your mouth mashed potatoes. It was almost like an early Thanksgiving. Slowly, one by one, we all trickled into the kitchen to make our plates and gather around our table. It’s always amazing to me the power food has in creating community. We all took a moment and just enjoyed each others company, eating rituals, plans for the weekend and who was getting seconds.
So as you’re planning next week’s Thanksgiving menu or maybe it’s your reception menu that your undertaking next week, remember that not everything has to be perfect. The turkey may not be as good as Heavenly Gourmet, the rolls may be burned, the stuffing might have too much sage, but rarely do we remember these things. Instead, what replays in our memory bank are the stories and laughter that fill our homes and the fond memories of the people that were there to help us celebrate. So maybe, call a caterer to do all the stressful cooking and focus on the after dinner board games and football, and catching up with loved ones you haven’t seen all year.
Tags: catering, food, holidays
Posted in Catering, food | No Comments »
A recent poll in Brides Magazine asked the question, “How did your best friend react when you got engaged?” I immediately thought of the movie Mean Girls. I’m not exactly sure why, but I suppose it had something to do with those who display disingenuous enthusiasm for others’ good news when they actually have very different feelings about said news. Maybe it also had something to do with the fact that I was silently recalling these brilliant lines:
Regina: Oh my God, I love your skirt! Where did you get it?
Lea Edwards: It was my mom’s in the ’80s.
Regina: Vintage, so adorable.
Lea Edwards: Thanks.
Regina: [after girl walks away] That is the ugliest f-ing skirt I’ve ever seen.
That scene pretty much capsulizes the thought process in some females heads, and is so spot on in some situations that it makes it that much funnier. This, however, is not the sentiment you, as a bride, would want to be on the receiving end from a real friend.
The magazine poll also tallied percentages and found that 42% of brides said yes, their friends were jealous of their engagement. And 11% of these brides have seriously considered breaking up with a friend over their wedding.
So how do you handle the delicate subject matter? Will it matter to you if you best friend has a problem with it? Do you truly have such a close relationship that if she does have a problem with your impending nuptials that you will take it as a “red flag” on the situation, and maybe she sees something that you do not?
Here are some responses that brides shared with us when they told their BFFs the big news.
Holly from San Diego said, “My boyfriend, Brian, took me; my best friend, Jessica; and her boyfriend on a hike. At the top of the mountain, Brian popped the question. Jessica was sobbing-near the edge of the giant cliff. She could have fallen!”
“Marisa was in a coffee shop when I called, and she started crying on the phone, she was so happy. A few days later, she drove seven hours just to celebrate with me.” – Maria from Philadelphia.
Catharine from Milwaukee said, “She threaten my now husband that if he ever hurt me in any way, she would get on a plane and kick his you-know-what. She was kidding – she’s genuinely happy for us.”
“My best friend immediately started planning a lingerie shower – which was quickly voted down by my other best friend. It was a sign of how the rest of the planning process would go.” – Emily Asheville, NC
“She gave me a lame excuse about why she couldn’t be my maid of honor: She had had a broken engagement several years prior and had never gotten over it. I still invited her, but she didn’t attend – and she forbade her family from attending, too!” – Sonya, Boston
“My fiance had arranged for all my closest friends to come to Chicago during the weekend we got engaged. My best friend, who lives in Texas, was unable to come, but she surprised me with a video of her and her family sending me their best wishes.” – Ashley, Chicago
So I believe when it comes down to it, a true friend will only want to see you happy in the long run. It may require them to bite their tongue from time to time, but if they see you being truly happy, they will (or should) be happy for you too.
Tags: announcements, best friends, bridesmaids, engagement
Posted in Advice, Announcements, Planning, Wedding Party | No Comments »
Being wedding professionals, we’ve just about seen it all. From creative attire and foot wear to color-themed reception food and candy bars, there is very little that we cannot confidently direct you in the right direction for assistance. So when we heard about a new type of wedding coach, we immediately thought, “Oh, a wedding consultant.” To which we were quickly retorted with, “No, not a consultant…a coach.” Well, we were intrigued to say the least.
Vibes Matters is a new professional to the wedding industry that is passionate about helping brides and couples work through issues before they become problems. Much like a life coach and trained from that very field, Paige Burton brings an enormous personal history that she eagerly shares with others in the hopes of inspiring workable solutions for brides/couples specific issues.
And when it come to brides, she offers several tips for the question, “Are you exquisitely engaged?”
1. Don’t Forget Who You Are:
Have you become so consumed with wedding planning you’ve morphed into a different person? Staying connected to things that fulfill and replenish you and lessen the disorientation you feel as you embark on the new chapter of your life.
2. Be Honest:
Anxiety before your wedding day is natural. It’s taboo to admit, but any self-aware person is going to experience some doubts about marriage and what it mean to him or her. Throughout the engagement, hash out fears with good friends, a “Wing Woman,” or if you’re both comfortable, your guy so you’re not blindsided by doubts.
3. Share the Load:
Many women take on all the planning stress, then resent their fiancé for not shouldering more of the burden. Make a point to address what’s really going on. The wedding should bring you closer, not further apart.
4. Remember What’s Important:
Your wedding day is just one day; your marriage will last a lifetime. Make your conversations worthwhile and not limited to the guest list and the song selection. Hashing out details both personal and professional before the I do’s will reduce the likelihood of unhappy surprises afterward.
5. Make Plans:
Remind yourself that the wedding marks a new beginning, not an end. Shift your focus by planning fun events or projects for after the big day. Give yourself something to look forward to and add a spark to your new marriage.
Ahhh, to be exquisitely engaged. Congratulations!
We’re excited to see this new area opening up in our industry. If any of you out there have used a coach like this in the past, or attempt to contact Paige, please share what you have learned. As a community of brides, we all need a little help now and then and it’s helpful for others to hear your experience.
Bridal Coaching Open House
Thursday November 17th
906 E. 5th Street Studio 111
Austin, TX 78702
Posted in Advice, Bridal Events, Consultants, General info., Marriage Education, Planning | No Comments »
Article from The Knot
You’ll spend more money on wedding food than any other aspect of your reception, so you’ll want to work with a top-notch professional. When making appointments to interview wedding caterers, try to schedule a tasting of their wares at a later point. Don’t forget to ask them the questions below, and choosing a caterer will be as easy as pie — just make sure your taste buds have a say in the matter too.
- Does the caterer specialize in certain types of food or service? (They should provide you with sample menus to review.) Find a wedding caterer who can make a memorable meal.
- Can the caterer arrange for a tasting of the specific foods you’re interested in prior to hiring? (They should.) Schedule a tasting if you get a good vibe.
- What is the caterer’s average price range? Are costs itemized depending on the foods you choose, or is there an all-inclusive flat rate? What would that include (linens, tax, and gratuity)? Does the caterer have printed price sheets for food selections? Make sure there’s room in your wedding budget.
- How involved is the caterer in a typical reception — does she work like a wedding coordinator or banquet manager, cueing the band, telling the couple when to cut the cake, adjusting the schedule if guests don’t seem ready to sit down to dinner? (You will need to find someone to fill this role — if your site manager or caterer isn’t going to do this, think about hiring a wedding coordinator.)
- Will the caterer provide tables, chairs, plates, table linens, silverware, salt-and-pepper shakers, and more? Ask to see these items to make sure they’re acceptable. Do you have to rent tables, place settings, or other equipment? Or will they arrange for the rentals? If not, find wedding rentals in your area.
- Who is the main contact? Will the same person you work with when planning also oversee meal service on the day of the wedding? (You want this to be the case.)
- Will the caterer work any other weddings on the same weekend, the same day, or at the same time as yours? (You want to be sure they will devote sufficient attention to you.) You may want to pass on a smaller outfit who indicates they have another job or two scheduled for that day.
- Does the caterer handle all table settings? Will they put out place cards and favors?
- Will the caterer provide wait staff? How many would they recommend for the size of your wedding? What will the waitstaff wear? (Top caterers say they always use their own serving personnel, even if the site’s staff is available, because they understand the caterer’s way of doing business.)
- Will the caterer be willing to include a recipe you provide, like a special family dish, or an appetizer with some sort of sentimental significance? Can they prepare vegetarian, kosher, kids, or halal meals for just a few of your guests?
- Where will the food be prepared? Are there on-site facilities, or do you, the caterer, and the site manager need to make additional arrangements? If the caterer must bring in his own equipment, is there an additional fee?
- Does the caterer work with fresh (not frozen) food?
- Does the caterer have a license? (This means her business has met health department standards and has liability insurance — make sure this includes a liquor license if you’re having a bar.)
- Can the caterer provide alcohol? Or can you handle the bar separately? If you can provide it, is there a corkage fee? How and when will you get the alcohol to the caterer? If the caterer will provide it, do they have an flexible wine list, and can you make special requests?
- How is this list priced?How will the caterer arrange the food on the buffet table or on plates? Can you see photos of previous work displays?
- Can you speak to previous clients? (Get at least two references that had a similar number of guests and a similar menu style.)
- Does the caterer also do wedding cakes? Can you use an outside baker if you desire? Is there a cake-cutting fee?
Posted in Catering, Details, food, Planning, Uncategorized | No Comments »
In my daily hunt for interesting material to inform our community on, I sometimes run into information that could only be described as a “head scratcher.” In a recent issue of Bride’s Magazine, a small blurb on the lower half of a buried page sparked my interest. The topic of discussion was: the boundaries between real and virtual life, what’s appropriate wedding behavior? I suppose this was an inevitable evolution of social media, but the content that some brides, grooms and bridal parties are now posting about does not, necessarily, make it okay.
Most brides are on board with some form of social media: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ etc. so the speed by which brides can now get and give information is at a lightening speed. So how are you using your social media as a planning tool or medium to relay information to others? As far as we’ve been able to tell, there are definite Do’s and Don’ts when it comes to your wedding day. Some are funny and others are very practical, especially for our “techie” couples. How would your Do’s and Don’ts list compare?
Use Voxer to maintain “before the ceremony” communication with your betrothed so you don’t break the “bad luck” rule.
Share your engagement photo(s) in a new album.
Guests check into the reception venue on Foursquare.
Ushers waiting in the parking lot create a circle on Google+.
Create an “Event” on Facebook as an invitation, unless you want thousands of random guests.
The bride uses her status update to tell friends how the processional is going.
The groom pauses to change his Facebook status from “in a relationship” to “married” before the kiss.
The bridesmaids tweet photos of the bride’s runny mascara during the vows.
The couple read their vows from an iPhone.
So as an added treat today, click on this link and take a look at this recent bride and her walk down the aisle. Would you do this? Would this ever be appropriate?Ettiquette, social media, techies
Posted in Advice, Details, Ettiquette, General info., Planning, Technology | No Comments »
As most couples realize throughout the planning process, it can fast become an overwhelming task. It’s best to approach your daunting list with lots of organization and hopefully a method to your madness. And above all else, don’t forget to breath and remember why you are undertaking such a monumental feat. It’s all about you as a couple and celebrating the beginning of a wonderful life together.
So when it does become a little too much for you, find a creative outlet that let’s you and your betrothed an opportunity to reconnect again. Whether it’s those important dance classes you’ve been meaning to do, listening to that “must have” band for the reception, or possibly an outing that incorporates a venue option along with some scrumptious food.
Look no further than today’s recommendation for a fun event. If you haven’t already been told, reality cooking show, Top Chef has made Texas their home this season and we’re showing it off the only way Texas knows how…BIG!
Shot mainly in San Antonio last summer, this season’s episodes show off our city along with Austin and Dallas in a big way. Hollywood and foodies alike are taking notice that our culinary palette is growing up, and we couldn’t be more excited to be in the national spotlight.
So here is the fun wedding connection…the Hilton Palacio del Rio. All season long, Wednesdays are dedicated to a viewing party at this gorgeous hotel. What a great idea for couples to reconnect, see a cool hotel, and sample some top-notch cuisine. We’re sure if you incorporate this date night event, you’re sure to get some cool foodie ideas from the show and get to know an outstanding group at the Hilton.
Over here at the Wedding Guide, we’re also marking our calendars to venture down there and rub shoulders with other local foodies who have tips to share with us. Bring your appetites, your special someone, and a big bowl full of enthusiasm. Dig in ya’ll!bridal event, date ideas, foddies, food, Venues
Posted in Advice, Bridal Events, Catering, food, General info., Inspiration, News, Planning, Venue | No Comments »