Posts

From my Hart: Asking the Groomsmen

Hey all! I’m back with more wedding updates! I’m super pleased to have a fun and quick bridal party update today for you all.

My fiance was so excited to ask his groomsmen, and he had a brilliant idea!

He asked each of them what their favorite liquor was, under the white lie that he was curious what kind we should supply for the wedding. Once he knew their favorites, off to the liquor store we went!

My fiance has a connection with an engraver, and he took the bottles to him to be engraved! HELLO HOW BRILLIANT! I’m obsessed with how great they turned out.

 

 

His groomsman all were so excited to be ask, and plan on keeping the bottles, unopened, forever! I just love this idea. It could be used for any life event. Think of a bottle of champagne engraved as a wedding gift or an engraved wine bottle commemorate buying a home! I wish I had thought of this for the bottle of pink bubbly I bought my cousin for the birth of her baby girl!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone. I cannot wait to celebrate another wonderful friend’s wedding & attend a huge craft festival that is tradition for my Mom and I. See you all next week!

Thank you to Nick at Smyth Jewelers for the feature image

From my Hart: Popping some Questions

Happy Friyay all! After a week of moving, and celebrating one of my dearest friends wedding, I come back to you with some fun, DIY and wedding updates.

It was officially my turn to pop the question!

I needed to gather my gals & ask our officiant if they would do us the honor of being part of our wedding. If you happen to have social media, which I will assume you do since you are reading this, there is a good chance you have seen bridesmaids proposals. There are so many fun way ways in which this can be done!

I knew I wanted to keep it simple, informative & save money so I could give the best gifts to my maids on our wedding day. It was important to me that the proposal set the tone for the wedding, informed the gals of the plan so far & was adorable & fun!

With some tissue paper & pretty boxes, it was exactly what I was envisioning… thanks to HomeGoods of course.

In each box was the following:

Informative: the wedding colors

the day of information: date, time, location

the goal image for the bridesmaid’s dresses

Fun: a gold bag that could be used for pencils, essential oils, medicationss, makeup, etc.

a picture frame or nail polish

a card popping the question

and finally a sweet treat!

IMG_7889

IMG_7888
For my best friend, who is gluten & dairy free, I found some delicious turmeric tea in place of the Italian wedding cookies!

 

For our officiant, I took a similar approach.

I curated a box similar to the maids boxes. I switched things up by including a notebook & inside of the picture frame was a note from my fiance and I asking her to be our officiant.

IMG_7892 2

All together, I am ultra pleased. These were so fun to make and I’m so happy with how they turned out! I’m so excited to share this idea with you all!

Next week I will share how my fiance asked his groomsman… It’s over the top!

From my Hart: Venue & Home Updates

Happy Friday once again everyone! Today I come to you with news that has been brewing since we got back from our blissful engagement in August. Today’s blog post is two fold & I’m so excited to share the news!

We bought a house!

After over a year of searching, we finally settle on our first home next week! It was nothing short of a blessing that we put an offer in that was accepted, on my cousins first heavily birthday. We’ve lost count of all the homes in which our offers were declined, never looked at, or that we lost before we could get our offer in.

I certainly never would have picked two weeks after our engagement for our home buying process to kick in, but I’ve taken it in stride as best as I can, knowing God would never give us more than we could handle. The saying is true: God’s timing, not mine.

So here we are! After a month of paperwork, phone calls, excitement, stress & all of the above, we are just four days from settlement. We are humbled and completely blown away by the amount of blessings coming our way. Our realtor / mortgage and insurance team are incredible and have made things so simple! Our families & friends are going above and beyond too & we cannot thank you all enough!

In other exciting news: we picked a venue!

We will officially be getting married in the summer of 2019 and I so look forward to sharing more home and wedding updates with you all! I’m sure there will be fun and serious posts to share; especially since we picked the venue that is closest to our families, but that has a cap on the number of guests we can invite.

With our exciting news out there- I am breathing a sigh of relief! I’m so excited to share with you guys these two huge milestones. I had planned on blogging next Friday, but I have decided to take next Friday off, both from work and blogging, so that I can clean, paint and move into our home!

I will be back on the 5th of October with more wonderful updates & insights! Thank you all for following along: let the adventures begin!

From my Hart: Wedding Thoughts

Happy Friday once again friends! Today I wanted to touch on some wedding “issues” that I’ve seen pop-up a lot over the last few weeks. These three items I’ve either been personally asked about for our wedding, or I’ve seen come up with friends of mine as they plan their big days & thought I could give my opinion! Let’s get into it.

Guest List

guest list

First up, the guest list, and quite possibly the most agonizing item any bride & groom will face during the planning process. We’ve all seen the dramatics played out in TV and movies, family members threatening not to come, feuds erupting, and people unable to sit near certain people.

In planning our wedding, the biggest road block has been the size of my family. I have approximately 196 family members, who I see on the regular. I’m blessed to have an army behind me, and love spending time with each of them.

For any bride and groom, depending on their venue, the guest list may have to be cut. We’re fairly confident we may be choosing one of to two venues: one of which is close but has less room while the other has ample room for guests but is located two hours away.

An important fact I want to stress, and cannot stress enough, is that the guest list is not a list of who is loved versus who is not. The guest list is not a list of who is loved versus who is not. Trust that the bride and groom have put their heart and minds into the guest list. They, and whoever else is involved in the planning, did not throw caution to the wind when selecting the attendees.

Also, don’t get discouraged! I’ve seen couples have a “B List” ready and waiting and as no RSVPs start flowing in, those “B list” invitations start going out. However, I have seen people get cut from the B list for how poorly they reacted after not getting an initial invitation, so please tread lightly. No guest or couple wants to deal with dramatics about who was or wasn’t invited. As I’ve mentioned above, it was most likely not an easy decision to make and does not reflect the amount, or lack, of love from the couple.

RSVP

c83ed45ae9299f47719b9d2d9f47323a

Once you get “the number” of guests, the invitations and the way in which they are addressed, tends to extend the guest list issue. I’ve written other blog posts about this issue alone, but as a quick recap:

Mr. & Mrs. Joe Shmoe = husband & wife invited (the same can be said for same sex couples)
Ms. Suzie Q = just Suzie is invited, no plus one
Ms. Suzie Q & Guest = Suzie & a date get to attend
The Shmoe Family = the parents & children are invited

Let’s not forget how important it is to RSVP on time. It doesn’t matter if you are in the wedding, or live in the bride and groom’s basement, they need the RSVP card and they need to know what you’re eating. Expect a phone call if you don’t RSVP in time, but please save everyone the stress.

Also, the line on some RSVP cards that reads “M__________________” is for you to write your name. The M is for Mr. / Mrs. / Ms. and then your name. Please DO NOT forget this- it is the ONLY way the bride / groom will know who is RSVPing back to them. Yes, some brides have tricks for tracking this, but I won’t divulge, because y’all need to do this step haha!

Also, the blank line for you to write in the number of guest(s) attending does not mean you get to fill it in with any number you wish. Please refer to how the invitation was addressed. If the invitation was for Ms. Suzie Q but she fills in the number 4, as her total number of guest- she will be getting a phone call to explain that only she was invited.

And if day of something terrible has happened and you are unable to attend, you need to let someone in the bridal party know! Also, “I don’t feel like going” is not an acceptable reason, don’t let something that would not keep you from work keep you from attending. Or at least lie and say you’ve been throwing up all day. Not showing up is just terribly rude.

Now as a disclosure- we are just beginning to review our guest list, and our final venue choice has not been made. Please remember the above is a combination of my own thoughts from my planning process as well as what I have witnessed other friends agonize over.

Unplugged Ceremony

Screen Shot 2018-09-13 at 2.00.21 PM

Unplugged ceremonies are quite a new concept but something I la-la-love! As you can imagine, cell phones have become so popular and so ingrained into our daily lives, the thought of whipping out your cell to capture a moment is knee-jerk.

However, imagine with me for a moment, you are trying to watch your best friend get married and someone’s cell is blocking the view. Or perhaps you are the bride and look out expecting to see the faces of those who you love the most as you stand next to your husband to be, and all you see is the back of cell phones. Or you get back your wedding photos and the ceremony pictures are scattered with cell phones.

Not to mention the distraction of a cell phone going off or an unwarranted and distracting flash. If this doesn’t bother you- then more power to you! I will speak for my fiancé and myself here and say, our wedding ceremony will be unplugged. Please turn off your cell phones- we want you to be as fully present in the moment as we are. Take all the pictures you wish during cocktail hour and the reception!

Final Thoughts!

Bottom line, for all three “issues” above, whatever the bride and groom request of you, you should respect. If they want an unplugged ceremony, please be respectful. If they do not give you a plus one, please do not argue or bring one anyway. If you were not invited or some other issues arises, please understand it doesn’t mean they don’t love you.

Oh- and don’t wear white to a wedding 😉

With all my love & happy planning to brides-to-be, happy FriYay everyone. Enjoy your weekend!

Feature Image from Caitlin Joyce Co
Unplugged photo from this article
RSVP image from Pinterest
Guest list image from Pinterest

From my Hart: Engagement Party

Happy FriYay all! As promised, today’s blog post will be all about our engagement party!

My godmother threw us the most incredible engagement party so my, and my fiancés, immediate family could come together and meet! Let’s dive right into it!

For invitations, my Aunt used Paperless Post to send the most adorable electronic invitations & they were free!

IMG_7624

There were balloons set in our wedding colors (navy, blush & gold) in bunches around the house. We had a photo wall that was 100% created thanks to HomeGoods. With $3 wedding wrapping paper & some photobooth props, the scene was set!

I had purchased a white Instax Mini 9, instant camera, from Walmart that I set out with the props and extra film. I plan on using this at every event leading up to the big day!

backdrop
$3 Wrapping Paper from HomeGoods

IMG_7713

We had pictures printed out in frames & on a canvas that we are going to hang up in our new home, placed around the food, photo wall & fire place. It was the perfect touch to help each room feel like it was apart of our engagement celebration.

We also had a photobook of our engagement pictures out on the coffee table for all to view. Additionally, and possibly my favorite, was a banner we had created from our engagement pictures. The prints, banner, canvas & photobook were all created via Walmart!

 

 

The food was an absolute feast! With some homemade dishes in addition to some of our favorites from Wegmans, the table was set. There was pulled pork, curry chicken, salads, pastas, a delicious cheese board, wraps/sandwiches, desserts galore & a mimosa bar! I have always wanted a mimosa bar & this surprise was the icing on the cake for me!

IMG_7716

We so thoroughly enjoyed our wonderful day hanging out and celebrating our forever with our families. Thank you so much to my godmother & grandparents for this incredibly & magical affair!

The best is yet to come indeed! We cannot wait to continue all of the celebrations to come with family and friends!

From my Hart: Gigi’s Guardians

My cousin Gigi would have turned 28 here on earth just last week- but instead she celebrated, what I’m sure, was the most incredible birthday yet from Heaven! As for the rest of us here on earth, we celebrated in her absence.

My cousin, lived her life to make others happy. If it was your birthday, she was decorating for it, if you needed your kid to be watch- she was watching it, if you needed someone to stay longer on a shift, or pick up some food for you, she was your girl.

One of my other dear & creative cousins, decided to create Gigi cards- and we set out in droves. As, what I have named ourselves, Gigi’s Guardians, we try and celebrate her giving and selfless spirit here on earth.

Gigi Cake

For her birthday, all around the United States, we paid for birthday cakes. Some of our Gigi cakes, made their way back to us. It was so wonderful to see how much cheer, a paid-for-cake brought someone. It was also wonderful to share her spirit with those whom have not met her.

40042919_1251937908281207_446256890284867584_n

Christmas Eve Eve

Our first Christmas Eve Eve without Gigi, we did something similar. My family has a wildly fun tradition of gathering at Walmart, at midnight, on Christmas Eve Eve. We wish one another Merry Christmas Eve as the clock strikes midnight & go around finishing up any shopping we still may need to complete. It is our own holiday, and one Gigi loved!

2017 was our first Christmas Eve Eve without her- & it was only 12 days after she passed. We came bearing gift cards- and passed them out to people throughout Walmart. On the envelopes, was a small note about how we were honoring her that holiday.

It was so wonderful to see peoples reactions, and even more impactful to see their reactions change once they read the note. Much was the same this time around, as we set out to pay for cakes, many of us took to Facebook to express the reactions of those on the other side of the bakery counter. It was heartwarming.

New Movement

We’ve decided to keep this thing going. Gigi spent everyday helping others and bringing others joy, so we are going to do the same. There are talks of business cards, and other items in the works so we can spread Gigi’s joy year round!

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again- I’ve got an army of a family standing behind me. The creativity and willingness to keep a movement going like this is just so wonderfully overwhelming.

Take some time to pay it forward. You you have to spend money- just hold the door, make eye contact, talk to a stranger, say hello, wave to the car that let you over, or give someone a complement!

These little gestures go a loooong way & that is how Gigi lived.

Have a great weekend & stay tuned!

I will be sure to keep you all posted on the updates of this movement & hope you all spend this Labor Day weekend really enjoying your family & friends. Give big ‘ol Gigi hugs to those you love!

Next FriYay I will be recapping our Engagement party & can’t wait to see y’all then!

 

From my Hart: Fun & Functional

Did you know I can be a bit of a nerd? Well, now you do!

Nothing gets me more jazzed than a new planner or calendar! I’ve got my planner, which is my trusty go-to. I keep important personal events, as well as daily work duties in there. Without my planner, I’d be lost. I also add the personal items from my planner to my home calendar. Unfortunately, this year the calendar I purchased, didn’t allow me to write on it in the way I would have liked.

Thankfully, while picking out a planner for my boyfriend this weekend, I found some stickers that I could not pass up! These would allow me to mark the dates on our home calendar without scribbling pen all over the place.

IMG_6999

The link to buy your own pack of these is right here! I particularly loved the variety and the consistency of the stickers. There were a ton of stickers I would use monthly, instead of just a few. As an example, lets take a look at how I’ve used them.

IMG_6998

Just as a small example, here is what was left of May when I bought there. I love the script font for holidays. The “later” tabs, which could be used for tasks, I have adapted to mark the Thursdays in which my fiance works late!

IMG_6996

Here is a more packed month! I’ve chosen to use the cupcakes to denote birthdays- the hot dog is to show that we are going to a ball game! Additionally, I’ve noted the holidays, anniversaries and special occasions- like my cousins graduation & a bachelorette weekend!

IMG_6997

In addition to more holidays, there are also doctors appointment reminders! It’s not the prettiest idea I’ve had, but I used that big ol’ “work” note is used to denote when my boyfriend will work on his usual day off. That big heart is to show that we have a wedding for one of my dear friends!

I love this sticker pack! I’ve added some of the other stickers to my personal planner, like the hydration tracker! Further, I’ve used the “what’s for dinner” notes to help keep us on tract for the nights we cook for the family!

There are also little motivational stickers I put at the beginning of each week & I’ve use the fancy bullets to help keep my tasks tidy and pretty.

It’s sure not as “OCD” as I would like it, but hey- I’m learning to let go. 🙂 I think this is a great compromise, and super easy addition to keep us on track! If you love being quirky and organized, I suggest you add these stickers to your life!