March 30, 2008

Sandals Weddings

“Sandals Weddings”

Sandals Weddings are truly a dream wedding. The moment that my husband slipped that sparkly diamond ring on my finger, my mind was already planning my perfect wedding. Most girls have their idea of a fairytale wedding when they are still children. I was one of them. I’d spent years and years saving ideas and pictures of cakes, flowers and dresses that I wanted for my own wedding. After I started to plan my dream wedding, I realized that it was nothing but a complete mess. I barely had time to breathe. After a few weeks of driving myself and my fiancé crazy, we decided to elope. A friend of mine was a travel agent and she suggested that we look into having a Sandals wedding where we’d not only be able to exchange our vows but also be able to have our honeymoon at the same time. It was a great idea to save money and save ourselves some major grief. We talked to our families and all agreed that we would have a Sandals wedding. My parents quickly said that they would definitely fly to whatever destination we chose. Our best friends all said the same thing. Before we knew it, there would be 8 people attending our small wedding and I was ecstatic that we had such a wonderful support system.

I started to do my research on having a Sandals wedding and we decided to go to Jamaica. It was affordable and looked very promising. Immediately, Sandals put us in contact with a wedding coordinator who told us that all we had to do was to show up. We would have several places that we could choose from for having the ceremony and they would provide a few items. A bouquet would be provided as long as the officiant. Some photos were included as well. The evening of our romantic Sandals wedding we would have a candlelight dinner in the nicest of the resort restaurants. I thought that it sounded incredible.

Finally, after months of waiting and planning, our time arrived. Our Sandals wedding was only days away. We arrived in Jamaica a day after the island had a major storm. The beaches were littered with seaweed and debris that had washed ashore. My hopes of getting married on the crystal white sandy beaches were ruined. The coordinator suggested that we choose another location. We ended up choosing the garden and it turned out perfectly. I wouldn’t have done anything differently.

I didn’t get my fairytale wedding that I’d always dreamed about. But, my Sandals wedding actually offered me so much more than I’d anticipated. I wasn’t stressed about having to take care of a million details at the last moment. It was hassle-free, simple and yet, romantic. An hour after exchanging our vows and having our small reception that the resort provided, we were in our swimsuits and floating in the pool. I love the fact that my Sandals wedding didn’t leave me a stressed out bride. My husband and I are hoping to go back for our 10-year anniversary and renew our vows at the same Sandals resort. I can’t wait.


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March 26, 2008

Wedding Planning Checklists

“Wedding Planning Checklists” One way to have a stress free wedding is by using wedding planning checklists. Planning a wedding can be very stressful, and everyone needs to be organized properly. The first thing to do is to plan well in advance. They may put together a wedding in one week on the TV soaps but it’s not a good idea. Give yourself plenty of time and try to relax. There is a lot to remember, so make wedding planning checklists and a budget plan. One will work with the other, hopefully in harmony.

Whilst the bride and groom usually decide on the basic thrust of the wedding, it’s usually left to  the bride’s parents to work out the details. Firstly, decide on where you want the ceremony to take place. You may want a traditional church wedding or a civic one. Couples get married in all sorts of wacky places these days, in sports stadiums and on roller coasters. Up mountains and on the beach. Draw up a short list of possibles on your wedding planning checklists, and remember that these places are sometimes booked years in advance.

The venue for the reception will also have to be decided early, although you may decide to have it in a private home. If that’s the case, you could hire a marquee or two for the garden. You may want some live music on the day. Try to choose a singer or group that are versatile, then all the guests will be happy. This brings us to the guests, who are a vital component of any wedding planning checklist. Decide on who is to be invited, send out the invitations and organize a seating plan. It’s not as easy as it sounds, seating plans can cause friction for years to come. Do the best you can, you can’t please all of the people all of the time.

Other considerations are the flowers, for the arrangements at the venue and the bridal bouquets. Cars need to be booked to take the various parties to the ceremony. The food for the reception must be decided on, as well as the wedding cake. Exhausted yet? The men need their morning suits, the ladies need their hats and the bride needs her wedding dress, (oh yes, the bridesmaids need their dresses too) It’s a satisfying feeling when you start to tick things off your wedding planning checklists isn’t it?

We haven’t finished yet! The bride and bridesmaids will want hair appointments at the hair salon and don’t forget to arrange the rehearsal dinner. There are just a few things left now on the wedding planning checklists. Presents for the bridesmaids, buckets of confetti, and table center pieces. The couple need to distribute their gift list. After it’s all over, it won’t just be the bride and groom that need a honeymoon. Of course, you could just hand over the wedding planning checklists to a professional wedding planner. They get paid to stress.

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March 15, 2008

Irish Wedding Dresses

Irish Wedding Dresses

Irish Wedding dresses are some of the most beautiful wedding dresses in the world. A lot of my friends tease me about my obsession with all things Irish. Ireland does not even fit in my ancestry, you see, yet I can not get it out of my mind. I love Irish necklaces, Irish music, and Irish beer. Most of all, however, I love Irish wedding dresses. I can not get enough of them. I have been to Irish weddings, and they took my breath away. All of the women looked as beautiful as medieval princesses, and the men acted like princes. If I ever get married, I want to wear an Irish wedding dress. I do not care what my friends say.

I have been looking at wedding bridal gowns for several months now, and comparing the different styles. This is how I came to my current obsession with Irish wedding dresses. Up to that point, I wasn’t even aware that such a thing as an Irish wedding dress existed. I figured that all styles of weddings had basically the same bridal wear.

Boy was I was I mistaken! The Irish wedding dresses look nothing like the traditional western style that I am used to seeing. They are more decorous, more ornamental. The look is at the same time more down to earth and more ornate. Many Irish wedding dresses convey such classical elements as corsets, often neglected in modern American wedding dresses. They really do flatterer a girls figure, especially if she has curves like mine. Even the Irish plus size dresses look fantastic, and the mother of the bride dresses turn an old woman into a girl!

I always try to take my boyfriend out with me to look at Irish wedding dresses, but he always feels uncomfortable on these outings. For the life of me, I cannot understand why. After all, he has always felt at ease among women’s fashions before. We have gone clothes shopping many times, and he helps me pick out my clothes. But there is something about Irish wedding dresses that puts me off a little bit. We have only been going on for a few months, but I thought he would be more comfortable hearing about my interests. Until I started talking about bridal shower wedding days, he was. Now, for some unknown reason, his whole attitude has changed. I don’t want to dump him for some reason as trivial as refusing to go looking at Irish wedding dresses with me, but his behavior seems so silly and arbitrary that I may have no choice.


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February 28, 2008

Examples of Wedding Vows

Examples of Wedding Vows

Examples of wedding vows are often the best way to write your own wedding vows.

Choosing the Right Wedding Vows

More people are choosing their own wedding vows rather than leaving it to their priest, pastor, Rabbi, or other religious leader to decide which vows the bride and groom should make to one another.  Many more people are taking an active role in this decision.

One way to choose wedding vows is by faith.  For most people, getting marriage is a commitment of body, soul, and faith.  Getting married means marrying the whole person and that person’s family as well. Therefore, making the wedding vows reflect their deep commitment to each other and the life they will build together is a good idea.

Common American Faiths

is the most predominant religion in the United States, and as a result many people prefer to vow to their future life partner in the name of God and their church.  There are many faiths considered to be Christian and each individual branch may have somewhat different wording to their particular vows.

Non-denominational wedding vows will hit many of the traditional points of commitment between two people, omitting the direct mention of God in any form. People being married by judge or justice of the peace may prefer to use nondenominational vows if, religion is unimportant to them. Or this could take place if each person practices a different faith and they would prefer that neither religion was the focus of their wedding ceremony.

Jewish wedding vows are commonly given when the rings are exchanged.  The focus of the vow is a commitment to be wed to that person by the laws of Moses and Israel. In addition to this is the promise of love, honor, and appreciation of each other for the rest of their lives.

Muslim wedding vows are more of a contract between two families which state the conditions desired and expected by each family and a commitment to uphold those conditions in the name of Allah.

Buddhist wedding vows give the two people an opportunity to voice their love, dedication, and future hopes for their lives together with respect given to their shared religious beliefs.  Their use of meditation and contemplation to make their lives and marriage stronger is an important part of their vows to one another.

Pagan wedding ceremonies are often preformed by a priest and/or priestess, which will join the couple under the name of the deities of their preferred branch of faith within the heading of Pagan religions.  Many Pagan wedding vows will require the couple to commit to each other as partners in life until love ends, rather than until death separates them.

Wedding vows are a personal choice that can only be decided by the people to be married. The bride and groom can choose traditional vows of their faith, to write their own wedding vows, or to allow the person performing their marriage to choose the vows.

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February 23, 2008

Traditional Wedding Anniversary Gifts

Traditional Wedding Anniversary Gifts

Finding just the right wedding anniversary gifts can be difficult sometimes. Which is why Traditional Wedding Anniversary Gifts are often the best gifts to give for Wedding Anniversary Gifts. In fact, remembering that special couple on their special day has been a tradition for centuries. In fact, a long time ago, it was decided that certain gifts should be given as wedding anniversary gifts depending on the length of time a couple had been married.

Traditional Wedding Anniversary Gifts
For example, a gift made of paper should be given for the first anniversary. In modern times, this has been changed to giving the celebrants clocks as wedding anniversary gifts. For the traditional fourth anniversary gift of something made of linen or silk, now we give appliances as gifts. I guess somebody figure out that after four years, that microwave oven given as a wedding gift would need replacing.

Traditional gift giving for the seventh year is something made of wool or even copper. For the 21st century, you should give the happy couple desk sets as their wedding anniversary gifts. Other traditional anniversary gifts include ivory for the 14th year, now replaced by gold jewelry, and wrist watches instead of crystal for the fifteenth year of marriage.

However, if you want to ignore the customs for wedding anniversary gifts and find something different, there are many companies that specialize in these kinds of gifts. For example, some travel agencies are unique in that they arrange trips for couples as either wedding or wedding anniversary gifts. If you give this as a gift, you can be guaranteed that the couple will be treated like royalty to celebrant their special occasion.

Treating your special couple to a fancy night on the town always makes a great gift. However, think about something different. Everyone knows one of those restaurants where you need to make reservations months in advance to get a table. By doing that, you have told the anniversary couple that they have been in your thoughts for some time.

Personalized wedding anniversary gifts are sometimes the best. It does not take a great amount of time and effort to purchase bath towels or bathrobes with names embroidered on them. And all of these anniversary gifts are available through the click of your mouse.

However, personalized gifts do not have to mean matching house slippers. How would they feel if you had poetry written especially for them or an artist painting their picture as a gifts?

There is an almost unlimited variation of wedding anniversary gifts if you search a little bit and use your imagination.

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February 20, 2008

Wedding Reception Music

Wedding Reception Music

Wedding Reception Music is the key to having the perfect wedding reception. In fact Wedding reception music can set the whole tone of the reception.

It seems like we go through so many stages in our lives. First you are growing up and adjusting to be part of the family that you are living with. Then you need to adjust to being out on your own and responsible for yourself and then, if you choose to get married, you need to adjust to forming your own family unit. Each stage brings new challenges as well as joys. It seems like only yesterday that I was adjusting to making a home and life with my husband, and now we are helping our daughter with her wedding plans. The circle of life moves around very quickly.

My daughter is a very organized person. She is also a perfectionist. It seems that she has taken the best skills of my husband and I. Her dream is to have a simple wedding that the guests will enjoy, and she wants all the details to be perfect. Her greatest worry in the planning this week is the Wedding Reception Music. She has most of the other details worked through, but music is a very important area of her life.

My daughter majored in music and teaches music at the high school level. She plays the piano very well and also has a lovely voice. She has many friends that are musicians so I thought the Wedding Reception Music would be a simple task. Her problem is the strict priest at the parish where she is holding the ceremony. Their wedding is scheduled for late Saturday afternoon. They wanted an evening wedding, however that would interfere with the regular Saturday evening mass. The priest told them that the latest they could hold the ceremony is four o’clock. This will allow the church and parking lot to clear prior to the seven o’clock mass. For the wedding music my daughter wants a string quartet as well as a pianist. This will involve rearranging a small area in the church. The priest is telling her no, because he does not feel that the area will be rearranged in time for the regular mass. Also he said he would need to approve her wedding music selection. My Daughter and her fiancé have a friend that is a priest who will be performing the ceremony, so she does not understand why she has to deal with the parish priest at all. I told her that she is learning the life lesson that it is sometimes easier to ask forgiveness than to ask for permission. She should have just had her friends come in and set up the day of the wedding, without talking to the priest first. She is now getting the help of her priest friend to get permission for the wedding music. I am sure that it will be a wonderful celebration, but it is unfortunate that the personality of one person has to add additional stress into the planning process.

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February 9, 2008

Wedding Registries

Wedding Registries

There are a lot of decisions which go into planning a wedding, but one of the most fun may be deciding where you want to setup your wedding registry.  The standard rule of thumb for wedding registries is that you want to give you guests a number of different options for gifts, but you don’t want to overload them with choices.  Registering at only one store isn’t enough, but registering at ten of them is probably too many.  Another important factor to consider is the cost of the items you’re registering for.  Though some guests will be more than happy to pick up the tab for the $500 knife set, not everyone is able to be so generous.  So when you register for gifts make sure you have a range of different prices ranges covered, and if you want to register for a large gift like a computer or entertainment center see if you can allow people to chip in for it as a group gift.

A Target wedding registry (Club Wedd) is a good place to start when setting up a Wedding Registries, since a Target wedding registry will allow you to cover most of your basic items, as well as giving you a wide range of price ranges and items to choose from.  In addition to setting up a Target wedding registry, you’ll probably want to set up a couple others.  Popular choices include Crate & Barrel or J.C. Penny, but it’s largely a matter of personal choice.  Don’t feel restricted to stick to the standard china-and-flatware sorts of Wedding Registries either.  My fiancée and I are both outdoor enthusiasts, so we registered at R.E.I. in addition to setting up a Target wedding registry and another at Crate and Barrel.  Though fine china is a pretty standard wedding gift, we realized that we would probably get a lot more use out of a 3-season tent than we would out of a set of gold-rimmed dishes.  Luggage is also a nice registry item, since it’s something you can use for a long period of time.

If you’re strapped for cash, another nice way to work out having the wedding of your dreams on a budget you can afford is to allow guests to register for components of the wedding like paying for the limo or chipping in for the flowers.  This is especially popular with couples getting married for a second time, since most of these couples already have the standards like flatware and china and don’t need to register for them again.


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February 6, 2008

Wedding Packages

Wedding Packages

Wedding packages  are the best way to get great deals while getting everything you need for you wedding.

After spending a few weeks making plans for my dream wedding, I was tired of looking at menus and reception sites. Nothing seemed to be as easy as I’d hoped it would be and no one in the family could agree on things. My fiancé and I were exasperated. He joked around about running off to Vegas and while I hated the mere thought of that, it was beginning to sound tempting.

A co-worker told me that her daughter had gone to Hawaii to get married. She said that she’d taken a handful of people and exchanged her vows on the beautiful beaches. The idea of ditching the wedding plans and going someplace exotic appealed greatly to me. So, my fiancé and I secretly met with a travel agent. Our agent calmed us down and told us about many resorts that have wedding packages for people who want to do exactly what we were hoping to do. She showed us all of the resorts and islands that had wedding packages in our price range. Whether we wanted to get married far away in the mountains or on an exotic beach, there were wedding packages galore. Now, my biggest decision would be which island we wanted to wed on.

We planned on his parents and my parents to join us, and hoped that they would all agree on it. Many of the resorts didn’t just have wedding packages, but had discounted packages for our family members. Our travel agent and I exchanged many phone calls over the next few weeks getting all of the details worked out. We finally decided on getting married in St. Lucia at Sandals. Their wedding package sounded wonderful. Not only could we get married on the beach, but they took care of the flowers and photos, and had a small reception for us as well. We’d get a cake and champagne served after we exchanged our vows. There were many other wedding packages in other destinations that sounded incredibly wonderful, but were a bit out of our price range. Hawaii was one of them. All of the wedding packages sounded like a fairytale but would put us into debt in starting out our lives together.

When we told our families about the wedding packages and what we’d decided, they weren’t very thrilled at first. After we invited them all, their mannerisms changed. My father could still give his daughter away. My mother would be able to still take tons of pictures. And afterwards, we could all work on our tans. Everyone was happy and it was all because our travel agent took the time to show us all of the wedding packages that were offered in every destination imaginable.


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February 2, 2008

Used Wedding Dresses

Used Wedding Dresses

When it comes time to get married, your budget will highly determine where you have your wedding, what type of wedding you will have, and what type of dress you can afford to buy. If you can find a great deal on a dress, you will have saved a lot of money that can go towards something else you need to pay for. Many women opt for used wedding dresses because for the most part, these have only been worn once, and they are always a great deal and in excellent condition.

You can find used wedding dresses in a lot of places, and perhaps you should look to your mom first. If you like what she wore for her wedding, she will most likely love to have you wear her dress for your wedding. You can get it altered to fit you, and if your mom doesn’t mind, you can get it altered a bit in style or add a little something extra if you so choose. Though you may not think of this as getting a used wedding dress, it most certainly is a great way to save a lot of money and honor your mother all at the same time.

You can also find great used wedding dresses in consignment shops. These may be local stores who specialize in wedding and formal dresses, or you may find these on the Internet. You might want to shop for your used wedding dresses locally first however, because when you do this, you have the opportunity to touch the dress first, and you can then try it on for size. If you get used wedding dresses online, you won’t be sure of a fit until it has arrived at your door.

You can also find a lot of used wedding dresses on eBay. The great thing about this is that you may get an amazing dress at a very inexpensive price. If on one else is bidding on the dress you want, you may get it for a steal. Also remember that some of the used wedding dresses that you find on eBay may not be used at all. There may be many cases when a wedding was canceled or the bride may have changed her mind about her dress but was unable to return it. You might be able to get a brand new dress for a used wedding dress price.


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February 1, 2008

Online Wedding Planner

Online Wedding Planner

One of the best and fastest ways to plan a wedding is with an online wedding planner.

The Internet has proven to be a lifesaver of sorts in all areas of our lives. We can handle all of our finances online, buy a house online and now even plan our wedding online. With an online wedding planner all you need to do is fill in some standard information and you’ll be well on your way to a happy and successful wedding day.

The way these programs work is fairly straightforward. Depending on the size and location of your wedding you can use an online wedding planner to help you choose the venue as well as plan the meal. An online wedding planner can even compare the cost of dresses or tuxedo rentals, which helps you save not only valuable time in research but also money as well.

A calendar is essential when it comes to planning an event like a wedding. Of course picking the actual date of the marriage is the first step, but you also need to jot down other notable dates including when to send out the invitations, when to confirm the menu with the caterer and when wedding dress fittings are scheduled for. An online wedding planner can take care of all of this. In fact your online wedding planner may also have a feature that sends you automatic email reminders of notable dates so you don’t forget a thing.

If you are utilizing the help of a family member or perhaps a maid of honor, you can send them the link to your online wedding planner too. They’ll be able to quickly check what needs to be done and add anything you may have overlooked. A wedding can be a stressful time for the bride-to-be so having someone else with access to your online wedding planner looking things over will ensure that the day goes as smoothly as possible.

One feature that some planners have is the ability to keep track of who is and isn’t attending your wedding, along with their contact snail mail or email addresses. This is such a help when it comes time to send out all of those thank you notes after the big day. You simply log into your online wedding planner and you’ll have the guest’s name, their address and what they gave you as a gift. It makes the process of saying thank you so much easier.

Finding one is easy with a simple search. It’s a great idea to begin using one early in the wedding planning process as it’s better to plan earlier rather than later. With the aid of an online wedding planner, the only hitch that day will be the one between you and your fiancée.

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