It is tough.  I am not going to lie.  Is not at all how I remember it to be, growing up in Puerto Rico, loving Christmas time!  We didn’t have much but somehow my mom managed.  She got hold of some fabric and made my sisters and I beautiful matching dresses to go with a new pair of shoes from La Gloria.  And off we were.  Thrilled!  Just as if we were going to the Oscars.  On our way to church in Noche Buena to celebrate Christ birth.  Then to visit family!  The whole Christmas day.

No, usually… there was not a Christmas gift under the tree.  In spite of my experiences from previous years, I hoped once again, delaying my desires of a Christmas gift surprise to January 6, on the Tres Reyes Mago’s day.  My beautiful display of hay I left to the camels and sometimes even some water, was not impressive enough to make the wise men stop.  But there were those glorious times where I found a dollar in my hay!  The camels might not have liked the menu but the wise men were merciful enough to leave me a tip for my efforts!

My life took a different turn than expected and today I am 1,083 miles from home.  And as I write this I long for those kind of Christmas.  Full of simplicity, family and love.

This season that inspires love and togetherness started off feeling sad and lonely.  I mean, am I alone?  Truly alone?  Even though somedays I go solo and it gets really hard to shake away that lonely feeling.  On those days that I pour out to others, when I remember that is all about giving and not receiving, those lonely feeling go away, far away.  Because, it’s the body heat that warms my heart.

It didn’t take me much to find someone that was also alone and needed a helping hand.  Since I shook my loneliness away I have taken a special friend to buy Christmas tree and decorations.  Helped and exceptional friend backstage with her two dance school recitals.  Assisted another extraordinary friend to prepare her acting studio for a two weeks live theater showcase of her performance class and gave a little extra by volunteering to help hosting the six performances.  Every experience not only exchange love and brought me great satisfaction but also gave me a purpose and a new group of friends.

There is no other holiday like Christmas!  Just reach out to another person and maybe you’ll help them get through their lonely days as well.  All they may want for Christmas is you!

At my friends home.  Her Christmas tree looks fabulous!  

Winter Wedding Inspiration

December 7, 2010

Sit back, get your cup of cocoa, grab a fussy blanket and dream of a Warm and Cozy Winter Wedding.  I am!

Yes, It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year and It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.  I know Miami Beach is No Winter Wonderland and Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer will not be stopping by.  There is no way I will be seeing Frosty The Snowman and I don’t believe Santa Claus Is Coming To Town.  But one thing I am sure of, it will be a Holly Jolly Christmas!  

There is no secret I am wishing we had a White Christmas or that at least I could say I’ll Be Home For Christmas.  But I don’t have room in my heart for a Blue Christmas, see I plan to be Rocking’ Around The Christmas Tree while humming and dancing to The Christmas Song beat. 

Oh Holy Night, I can hear Silver Bells ringing.  And The Little Drummer Boy on a Sleigh Ride singing Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!  Obviously, he doesn’t know that Jingle Bell Rock

All of these songs are full of great spirit wishing Joy To The World, Feliz Navidad and a Wonderful Christmastime!

Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas!
My FAVORITE Christmas song…  Ever!

Save The Date With Style

November 30, 2010

Now a days with families and friends having a full schedule and some of them most likely will need to plan a long trip to assist your wedding or event, SAVE THE DATE has become very popular.  The announcement typically states the date of the wedding or event, so friends and family will know to keep that date available.  Generally, they are sent out between six months to a year ahead of time.  

Save the date notification do not need to be formal, so go ahead be unique and let your personality show!  Be sure to send it to the people you want to attend for sure and not the “maybe’s”.  Save the date let’s you know that a formal invitation will follow.  

It’s easy to make it fun and interactive by including trivia questions for destination weddings, places of interest in that city, possible hotels, maps, etc.

The latest trend has been to utilize the pictures from your engagement session.  Some couples have gotten really creative and used props with their wedding date on it for their photo shoot.  Also, if you have the equipment you may want to shoot a video to use as the Save The Date.  These are some of the coolest videos I have found Josh Dick & Julia Schwadron and Felicia Marie & Sean.  Be creative, fun and to the point!

Here are some fun examples of what others have done.

Jennifer Lane Graphic Design
Letter Punch Design
Making The Moment Design

Once Wed Design

Borrow Tourquoise Design

Wedding Trends for 2011

November 24, 2010

Keeping up with new wedding trends and preparing for my next year’s brides, I came to find out that my favorite venue… the beautiful outdoors is the new trend.  Also lots of details, creativity and Rustic-Chic concepts.      Looking for examples to best relay my finds to you, I had to look no further than my own computer.   The Country Wedding that I was delighted to put together in September and strikingly captured by Patricia Dash is a great example of the wedding trends for 2011.
Whether you are into Country Weddings or not, keep this trends in mind while planning your wedding.  Just add your personality and style to have an unique, fun and elegant wedding that commemorate the both of you!

Outdoor Weddings
Celebrating out in the open is so special, unique, fun and comforting!  Even though it would be hard to predict the weather, having an outdoor wedding that fits your style and theme is a fabulous way to give your guests an unique experience.  Not to mention that it can be easier in your pocket.  The only thing is that you must remember to have a plan B, just in case the heavens would like to bless you with a little rain.
Above photo courtesy of Perfect Outdoor Weddings

Bringing Past to the Present
Vintage is definitely back!  The growing trend is to bring into your celebration details that were used in the past.  Create an atmosphere of evocative romance with vintage vases, flowers and light, including your ancestors pictures in the decorations.  If possible, recycling your grandmother’s wedding dress will not only give you a chick and unique look but it will also help your budget.  Shopping at your local vintage store for a recycled wedding dress could be another alternative.   
Simple and Beautiful
You probably heard the saying that “Less is more”.  It is true!  Country flower centerpieces can be fewer and lower in a long table creating an elegant and sophisticated look.  Also recycling glass recipients and tin cans are a growing trend to create an eco-chic and rustic ambiance, making your celebration original.  Spigot jars are so in!  Inexpensive, chick and fun way to provide water drink, lemonades and cold teas.

It’s All About the Details
Somehow they can’t go unnoticed.  The smallest detain makes a huge difference.  And this coming year, details are even more important than ever!  Everything needs to be planned from the wedding dress to the last detail.  The wedding color palates for 2011 are just bright, fun and you guested, vintage.  They should be carefully planned.  The escort cards, place cards and guest book should be original and personalized.  The tables and chairs should have your touch.  Planning some type  of entertainment or interaction for the end of the night is always a good idea.  It could be a slide show of the coupe’s life, an exit of the bride and groom under sparklers lid by all the guest, photo booth or a fun, unique and yummy late night snack.  If you do not have the time or creativity for details, think about hiring a wedding planner such as myself to transform your dream wedding into a reality.

Rustic Cakes

The cake is the highlight of the celebration right after the bride’s dress.  It should be beautiful and match the wedding theme.  The popular styles will continue to include various tears with elegance but a touch of rustic-chic.  Butter cream will replace fondant and large sugar flowers are substituted by natural flowers and sugar glazed fruits or just fun details.  A wedding cake dessert table will continue to be a hit next year.


Once In A Blue Moon

November 22, 2010

Last night I was meeting some friends on Lincoln Road for a birthday dinner.  Totally oblivious of any celestial objects, I got ready.  Since my apartment faces the water, when I opened the door to leave my home, there it was!  Beautiful and magical!  Immediately I knew something was different. 
No!  I am no moon expert but I had to research the reason why the heavens had this gorgeous display.  What I found is a “must” share information!  
Yesterday’s moon was officially BLUE at 12:28!  There are two types or categories of BLUE MOON.  The one we experienced last night is the third full moon in a season of four full moons.  We should expect the next one to happen in August 21, 2013.  The second type is when there are two full moons in one month, which last happened on December 2nd & 31st, 2009 and will repeat on August 2 & 31, 2012 and July 2 & 31, 2015.
There you have it… the moon dressed in blue!  (For all of you “moon guru” out there, I hope you enjoy the review!)

And that’s why last night while walking out of my apartment I wished I was in love.  But I am not giving up hope… maybe it will happen before the next blue moon.

Funny Wedding Announcement

November 17, 2010

The Wedding Planner’s Blog posted this wedding announcement and I couldn’t help but share it with you.  Funny  ah!  The groom was either loved dearly or not.

According to Wikipedia a guestbook is a paper or electronic means for a visitor to acknowledge their visitation to a site, physical or web-based, and leave their name, postal or electronic address (if desired), and a comment or note, if desired.  My definition would be: Leaving a mark, love and support.  A mark meaning I was there, this is what I was doing at this moment in time.  Love, just because I love you!  And support, because no one is an island.  We need to share our special moments with our loved ones and to support each other is what life is all about.  

While choosing your of guest book, be creative and add your personality to it.  Think about  things you like?  Where would you like to keep it or display it after the wedding is over?  How can you incorporate the guest book into an opportunity to “wow” your guest making it fun and unique.  

Here are some ideas of what has been done.  But remember, there are NO rules, creativity is the key!

Make A Wish… Take A Wish… 
I love this idea…  as it is said, is better to give than to receive!  Your guests can take a wish and write you a note on paper and put it in a jar.  The notes can be more intimate and no one will read them once in the jar.  And you can scrapbook them later!  

The Wish Tree
Ask your guests to leave their love and advice on this cards.  After your wedding, you will have so much fun remembering your guests while reading their wishes.

The Wedding Tree
“Leaf” a thumb print and sign your name… What an unique and fantastic idea!  

Have each guest sign a rock and after the wedding you can use it as decoration.

Let your guest write their personal message in your vintage postcards collection!  To expand the experience a little you can have the guests mail the cards in with their wishes during the first couple of months of your marriage.

Wine Bottles
Great idea for a vineyard or winery wedding.  Let each guest sign their name and wishes in a wine or champagne bottle using a silver or gold colored pen.  Open a bottle on each anniversary!

Old Typewriter
For a vintage, garden wedding or just because you love old style writing, have an old typewriter and ask your guest type their name and wishes on a Wish Paper.

Whatever your choice for a guest book is, be sure it’s unique and represents who you are.  Be creative!

On September 18th, I was surprised with a phone call from a long time friend.  He told me he was getting married and would like me to assist them with the “Day Off”.  I got so excited because he is a brother in Christ that has been single for as long as I have and waiting patiently for the right one.  How great it is to be a part of it and witness first hand what the Lord is doing in their life.  And that I did!  They were married on Sunday, November 7th.  The Lord REALLY blessed them with a FAIRY TALE wedding, just because He is sooo good like that!  I am so blessed and grateful to have been the fairy in this tale making their dream coming true!  LORD YOU ARE GOOD!
The lovely couple:  Ray & Jackie del Mar!  Separate they are beautiful people but together they are such a stunning couple… 
With only one and a half months before the big day, I knew they needed a little bit more help than just the day off services, so I had to get into a Speedy Gonzalez mode.  Andale, andale!!! 
Her dream day would have been at Disney World but instead we brought the her fairytale world to South Beach were family and friend gathered to witness and celebrate this very special union.  We meet one time per week for three weeks to plan and the execution of it all was done in only 3 weeks.  This were some of our inspirations…
We had the awesome idea of incorporating their engagement photo shoot into the wedding by adding a number so each table at the wedding would have a gorgeous picture of the couple.  This is the complete shoot by Ignacio Zancada.  Isn’t it fabulous?

I can’t wait to share this wedding with you… very soon.

Wedding Posing 101

November 1, 2010

So much goes into a wedding.  The planning feels like is for ever and when the day finally gets here… it all happens so fast.  You are married!  And exhausted.  The gorgeous makeup goes away, the dress gets dirty, the cake got eaten, and the party is finished.  Then what?  All that remains is the memories and yes, thank goodness… THE PICTURES!

Hopefully your photographer captured all those moments to remember and all your photos are in focus without crazy stuff in the background!  

For a little inspiration… This are some photos taken by some of my favorite photographers.

Jasmine Star… you got to love her!  I do!  (I really hope she doesn’t mind me showing off her awesome work)


The next two are from Diana Lupu Photography… I just love her style, the images speak for themselves!

I found this very useful information on the internet and thought… hmmmm…. some of you would have wished to have this information before your wedding photo session.  Well, here it is… if you are blessed enough to read this before your wedding, go ahead… dream on, practice and get prepared to have fabulous images.  

1. Don’t stand square in front of the camera. This is where the saying “the camera adds ten pounds” came from. Stand slightly sideways and move your head towards the camera or angle one shoulder towards the camera to avoid the bulkiness.
2. Point your nose away from the camera and look at the camera. This makes for a sexy smile that isn’t head on and flat looking.
3. Put your weight on mostly one leg. This will help you shift your weight and show off curves and angles that photographers love.
4. Go with the flow. Don’t be shy to be yourself on camera. It’s better to be extra silly and adventurous than stand there awkwardly. Remember that photographers also feed off of your energy. Photos will turn out better when you really give them that good vibe.
5. Gently place your hand on your hip. This will convey confidence in your photos as well as make you look thinner.
6. If you have a floor length gown, wear comfy shoes. Stilettos and grass just don’t mix. Also you don’t want to get your white heels dirty before the reception.
7. Be careful with black eyeliner outside. When wearing black eyeliner it’s extremely hard to look against the sun. Not only does it create a squinty look but the photos will make your eyes look very dim and harsh.
8. When you sit on a couch, your thighs automatically appear bigger. Your upper arms have this same effect when you hold them close against your body. Hold your arm slightly away from your body during photos to avoid this flattening effect.
9. Keep the drinks to a minimum. Have you ever noticed how you sweat immediately after drinking champagne or wine? Nobody wants sweaty wedding pictures.
10. Think about the shots you want to get. Are you really going to use all those photos of yourself with a half-made face while you get yourmakeup done? You also don’t need 50 family shots. The majority of the photos should be taken of you and your fiancé.
11. Last but not least, don’t overdo anything. This includes tanning, hair dying, teeth whitening and all that good stuff. It’s much easier to Photoshop on a tan than to scrub your entire body with a wire brush like Anne Hathaway in Bride Wars (2009).

As a bonus tip, this great video I found online. 🙂