Wednesday, January 30, 2008

What I am in love with today...

Illuminations has it's new spring line out and I am soooo in love with it, a few pieces to be more specific...

Date-Night Idea's

REDBOOK's new book, 500 Great Dates, has tons of fun plans for you and your guy — no matter how much (or how little) time, money, or babysitter access you have, So when the stars are finally aligned — you've cleared your calendars, you've found someone not featured on America's Most Wanted to look after the kids — you want the evening to be perfect, which practically begs for a Murphy's law moment. Don't sweat it. You can lay the foundation for lots of fun nights out (or in) by following these simple save-the-date guidelines.

First, make sure that at least every other date gets you out of the house and away from your daily life.

Second, be clear about who is doing what planning-wise, or you may end up doing nothing. Finally, take turns organizing your dates.This isn't about planning the perfect evening; it's about having time with the person you love so you can rediscover, talk, laugh, and enjoy each other.

Hera are a few of my favorites:

Dinner and a Movie With a Twist: The Saturday-night standard with these tips Turn your night into a mini-vacation by matching the menu to the movie:Kung fu action flick? Order some spicy noodles at your local Chinese restaurant. French film noir? Hit the nearest bistro. Italian family drama? Share a big bowl of spaghetti. Choose a restaurant that has small tables, or ask to sit side by side, so you can't help but rub knees.

Try brunch and a matinee: Your neighborhood's fancier restaurants are way more affordable (and just as delicious) in the daytime hours. Laugh like a kid again at the latest G- or PG-rated movie.

Go for an all-day hike: Check out for a listing of nearby treks and get lost in the woods together. Pack a picnick (bring wine)

Visit a museum: has links to thousands of art institutions in America and abroad; the Art Museum Network at lists links to the Websites and exhibition calendars of the world's leading art museums; and will help you easily locate an art venue near you. If art really isn't your (or his) thing, don't overlook other kinds of exhibits, such as the history of hockey, or even surgical equipment! One good source for the weird and wild:

Go camping overnight: There's no TV to interrupt your conversation, and the night is long, so you can retire early to your sleeping bags (zipped together, of course).

Watch the sun go down: Head to the highest point in town, or in my case any beach and when the light is romance-perfect for enhancing your sensuous mood, turn the scenic view into a background for a make-out session.

Take a dance lesson: Even if you end up stepping on each other's toes, you'll be forced to pay attention to how your bodies move together. Avoid dances that don't involve touching (like line dancing). Instead, try learning how to tango, waltz, or even square-dance. At the end of the lesson, be prepared for your dancing fool to sweep you off your feet and straight into bed.

Have a picture-perfect night:Take a camera with you and at different points on your night out, ask people to take your photo (make it a point to lock lips for some of the snaps).

Take a trip to nowhere: No packing, no planning, no idea. Just get in the car and start driving off into the sunset together. Stop when you're hungry or thirsty. If there's an interesting sight or town, pause and explore. So much of life seems to be about following the agenda. By following your heart instead, you'll recapture that exciting sense of the unknown you felt when you two first met.

Meet for a midnight snack: Nibble on whatever sweet thing is on hand or have a s'mores tent party (after the kids are in bed). Hook up a makeshift tent with a rope and a blanket, then roast a couple of marshmallows in the toaster oven and sandwich them with chocolate graham crackers. Don't worry about making a sticky mess — you can lick the crumbs off of each other later.

Plan a romantic "mystery night:"One of you makes all the arrangements and just tells the other where and when you'll meet (perhaps via a note in a lunch bag or a briefcase, in the car on the driver's seat, propped against the milk in the refrigerator, or scribbled on the kids' Magna Doodle). The destination can be anything from dinner at a nice restaurant to a scavenger hunt with you as the prize. It's not the venue that makes the evening special, but the anticipatory thrill that comes with not knowing what's coming next.

Check into a high-end hotel: Even if it's less than a mile from your own bed, you'll still feel transported to luxury land, where the only thing you need to concentrate on is each other. For one thing, there's a great big bed. For another, there is a "Do Not Disturb" sign that actually works. Lounge in the fluffy white robes, order room service and feed each other in bed, get hot in the steam room, have a randy romp in the hot tub (preferably in your room!), and sleep until checkout.

Take a class:Discovering something new together adds a layer of emotional connection to your relationship that will last long after the last lesson. Try scuba lessons, and dream about running off for a getaway at a remote tropical island; or learn a new foreign language

Go to an amusement park: A roller-coaster ride can jolt you into a "save me!" love clinch; a trip through the haunted house affords ample opportunity to sneak in some grabs or even a little necking; a challenge to a game of Shoot the Duck gets your competitive juices flowing (whoever nabs the teddy bear wins); and a communal stick of cotton candy lets you slip in a few sugary kisses as you nibble. Check out

I hope this gave you some idea's and some motivation to get up and get out of the house for a night!

Monday, January 28, 2008

For the Wives

Ladies I told you I would post this so I am keeping my word.
MSN cames out with 10 Steps to Being a Better Wife so here they are:
These 10 steps will help you re-energize your marriage and renew your appreciation for the former Mr. Perfect.

1) Take care of yourself Turns out that the best thing you can do for your husband is also good for you. Eat healthy foods, maintain good grooming, and exercise regularly. You'll look and feel better, and you'll continue to be the vibrant and attractive woman he fell in love with, no matter your age.

2) Say thank you, often When researchers ask men what they want from their wives, appreciation always makes the list. Everyone likes to be appreciated, so remember to notice the things your husband does—for you, for the kids, for the house—and thank him. You'll put a smile on his face and a little joy in his heart.

3) Keep the romance alive When was the last time you planned a romantic interlude with your husband? If you can't remember, you're way overdue. Be affectionate, write love notes, give him a backrub, plan a date, and initiate sexual play. Remind him that you still find him attractive.

4) Let him have "guy time" Everyone needs time for themselves—to relax, enjoy a hobby, or socialize with friends. If your husband loves football and you don't, don’t bug him about it. Encourage him to cultivate friendships with other men. He'll enjoy the companionship. Studies show that people with friends tend to live longer, healthier lives.

5) Make your husband a priority With the everyday stresses of work, home, and kids, it's easy to take your husband for granted. Make time for the two of you to reconnect on a regular basis. Take an interest in his work and hobbies. Let him know he's important to you.

6) Don't try to change him Are you outgoing, but your husband is shy? Do you like a clean house, but he leaves towels on the floor? Behavioral experts say you can't change others, you can only change yourself and how you react—so look for ways other than nagging to handle these situations. Compromise on social activities by making them shorter, or go by yourself. Place a laundry basket in the bathroom. And when he attends a party or puts dirty towels in their proper place, thank him. Positive reinforcement beats nagging every time.

7) Don’t make him guess—tell him what you wantIt's easy to assume that the person who lives with you every day also knows you well enough to know what you want. Not true. Most of us view the world through our own needs and desires, so don't be surprised if your husband thinks that what you want is what he would want. If you want something specific—advice, a hug, or a red sweater for your birthday—let him know.

8) Cultivate friends and interests outside your marriage Once you’re married, it's easy to shrink your social network to revolve around your husband. But no one person can meet all your needs, and it’s too much to expect your husband to be your partner, your lover, AND your best girlfriend. Make time for friendships outside your marriage. You'll have more fun and bring new energy to your relationship.

9) Let free time be free Just as you need time to relax and unwind, so does your husband. He may not define it the way you do, though; while your idea of relaxing after work may be talking over a glass of wine, he may enjoy being quiet for awhile, reading the newspaper, or watching TV. Find a compromise so both your needs are met. And give him time to recharge by not over-scheduling weekends with home projects and shopping.

10) Believe in your husband, and let him know it Men can display a lot of bravado, but like us they sometimes struggle with low self-confidence and feelings of failure. And because men approach the world as competitors, they sometimes end up feeling like losers. When he comes home, your husband needs to know that the person he values most in the world believes in him—especially when he doesn't believe in himself.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Love is in the air...

Who Loves Valentines Day?

Who Loves Red Envelope?

Who Loves 15% off at Red Envelope!!!!

I found these super cute things and just had to share some gift ideas :0)

So if you are planning a romantic weekend abroad with your sweetie, you know somewhere tropical. Than there is nothing better or more sexy (but a little cramped) than a...

Mile High Kit!!!

And after you have enjoyed all the sights and in the mood for something chocolaty and adventurous how about a

Chocolate Body Tattoo

And if he doesn't already know that he has the "Key to your Heart"

But wait!

You have to be wearing this when you give it to him!

What a great Valentines day you planned for when you open that famous red box it better have in it...
(or something similar)

And some of these close by as well

Personally I like pink roses better than red ;0)

Now before you check out make sure you put your promotion code in

Also...Hallmark has 15% off too

Happy Valentines Day to all the Lovers!!!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


If you live in or frequent the SW FL region and want your pictures taken you just must have Ashley or Sam at Ashley Brokington do it! Check out the site!!
Their work is something amazing, just look at the wonderful pictures Sam took
of Brandi and Steven, this is just about the cutest couple ever!!
I love working with them, they both have the best personalities, I cant wait for their March wedding!

Friday, January 18, 2008

Wedding Trends Im Loving!

This is my "Hot list" for 2008

Colored Shoes for the bride, I am seeing a lot of this and I wish it was one thing I would have done for my wedding, but there is nothing hotter than a bride with a secret splash of color hidden under her dress weather it be her shoes or a dyed crinoline. Loving the metallic and bright reds!!

Feathers!! I love the exotic look of them and you can use them everywhere! Bouquets, boutonnieres, centerpieces, the options are endless!

(This is one of my creations, didn't know I was crafty huh?)

Mini hors d'oeuvres!! Ok if you read my old post about mini things you know that I LOVE anything that is this is one of my new favorite things!!

How cute are these Grilled Cheese Shooters!!

Anything Vintage ~ I love this classic look, when I looking at my grandmothers wedding pictures I just love it and I love that what was old is new again!

Check out this website to find more vintage dresses like this one!

Last but not least and I always tell my brides Personalization is Key!!

Was you and your hunny's first date at a movie theater? How about some hot fresh popcorn?

Did you meet at camp when you were younger? Who doesn't love smores?!

Do you love being on the water? Serve your raw bar in a small boat on ice at the reception...minus the crazy guy in the hat!! LOL

~Happy Planning in 2008!!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

For the Men

I will be the first to say I have a wonderful husband but SOMETIMES!!! And if you are a newlywed then you probably dont know what I mean by > SOMETIMES!!! but for us out there that have been married for more than a year and the newlywed phase has passed you get it... anyways I was just browsing around MSN and found this article and as I read it I could agree with some of them so...I wanted to share, and then ladies maybe you can pass on the info discreetly, you know whispering it over and over while he is sleeping or putting cute lil post it notes around the house LOL

ok here is what they have to say...

10 Steps to Being a Better Husband
Turn off the autopilot and start feeding your marriage.
By Craig Playstead

1) Take an interest in something your wife is really passionate about.**
2) Put the kids to bed.*
3) Learn to apologize.
4) Thank her for putting up with you.
5) Clean up after yourself. *
6) Make time for just the two of you.**
7) Groom yourself.
8) Get away from the family.
9) Deal with your side of the family.
10) Don't lose your dating manners.*

Be sure to read the complete article on MSN

* Agree
** Highly Agree
***Get it?!

That about sums it up!

The other day was I was exhausted, I had 2 meeting with 2 different couples, and I felt like it could have been the same meeting twice, both couples were telling me the same thing "our onsite planner is going to take care of everything" then comes the question "Why should we hire you" while I gave a very good reason why they should, I still got the look like yeah right!

So after all that...I sat down to relax with my soft fuzzy robe, a coke and my trusty blogs and came across Kelly's wonderful blog that just so happened to be about Onsite planners vs. Independent planners, as soon as I saw the title it was as if I had one of the choirs of angels behind me singing the hallelujah know the one I'm speaking of :0)

I have to share what she wrote but please check out her wonderfully witty blog to read the whole thing!

"The best way to find out what exactly your "included" planner will do...ask. Here are a few really good questions. And yes, the crazy seeming ones, I have actually had to do.
"Hello Onsite Planner (insert name here)! I have a few questions for you. Yes or no answers please."
"Will you...

1. Call all the vendors on your preferred vendors list and see if they are available for my wedding and in my budget? And if not, will you get me 3 more options who are?
2. Create a budget for me for everything wedding day related?
3. Write and hand out both wedding party and guest list itineraries?
4. Compile all the goodies for the welcome bags and make sure all the hotels get them just before guests arrive?
5. Give me stationary and etiquette advice?
6. Keep my mother at the cocktail hour, far from me during photos, with a full gin and tonic and away from crazy Uncle Steve?
7. Schedule and attend all the vendor meetings with me?
8. Review all the contracts I'll have to sign?
9. Prepare a detailed timeline for my day as well as one for all the vendors working at my wedding?
10. Go out and find my new father-n-law size 12.5 brown leather lace free yet wedding appropriate shoes when his sole falls off during the ceremony and make sure that you're back in time for him to be introduced into the dinner reception?
11. Call and confirm all the vendors have been paid, are going to show up, if they need anything further, and that they do in fact know not to say anything about the surprise grooms cake.
12. Find a replacement tuxedo for the best man the morning of the wedding when it arrives blue and not black?
13. Help me create design options for my wedding?
14. Research and find favors, a unique escort card display and super cool fun things for my guests to do at my wedding?
15. Help me plan a welcome reception, grooms outing, bridesmaids luncheon, and rehearsal dinner? Oh, and a farewell brunch too? Oh, but not all at your site of course.
16. Figure out all the rentals I'll need, order them, and then oversee the installation?
17. Stay for the entire wedding and then check under every single table for lost shoes and purses after everyone leaves?
18. Run the rehearsal?
19. Email me when you find flip flops on clearance at Old Navy and then fight with them until they agree to send all 775 to you, even if it does clean out their stock?
20. Have an emergency kit prepared for me and my bridesmaids?
21. Make sure there are hospitality baskets in the restrooms?
22. Politely explain to the make-up artist that my eyes look ridiculous so I don't have to feel awkward?"

Thank you Kelly for letting me share this...oh and by the way I did get both of the weddings...there goes those angels again lol

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

It's Green!

I was playing around and changed the look of my blog a lil tell me what you think?

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

It's A New Year and You're Engaged!!

If this is a first for you, than it can all seem pretty overwhelming, all the thoughts running through your head...Centerpieces, floral arrangements, Caterer ect.

Well let me be the one to tell you unless your wedding is in 3 months you have time to think about all those things.

I made a list for you of 6 things that need to be done sooner rather than later

  • Figure out your budget- It cant be a pretty touchy subject but if mom & dad are helping make sure you get a good idea of where your money is coming from and where it's going to be spent. The knot has a great budget guide to use!

  • Estimate the size of your guest list- Is it going to be 50 or 150 that makes a big difference with the rest of your planning

  • Set a date - This is a pretty big one, it took me almost 2 months to set a date for our wedding after we got engaged (partly because I forgot, I was so caught up in just being engaged lol)

  • Start looking for venues and a time frame - you don't want to have to have your wedding in uncle Sam's back yard because you didn't get the perfect place booked in time, and believe me some venues book up years in advance **Read your contract BEFORE you sign it!!

  • Identify a wedding style - Have it reflect who you are and what you love in each other

  • Start looking for your dress - Learn what flatters your figure, don't take the sales ladies word every time, take the best friend, mom, mil. Someone that you know that will tell you the truth!

Ok brides-to-be here are some things to start working on~

Happy Planning!!

Monday, January 7, 2008

What do you think about purple?

This is my inspiration for an April 09' wedding...

**Let me know what you think

This is just my first thoughts :0)
(The 1st 2 shots are at the Tarpon Lodge)

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Make Them Sparkle

Check out this video to get a quick way to clean your rings if you don't have time to get to your jewelers....My advise is to take them to the jewelers when you do get a chance, because there is nothing better to clean your jewelry than the ultrasonic machine

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Post wedding Blues

I know it sounds crazy but for new newbie wives out there you know exactly what I am talking about!

You spend soooo much time planning and shopping and doing all the fun things that go along with planning the day you have always dreamt about and then it all comes to an abrupt halt and all that time that was used for planning and shopping is now taken up by endless hours on the seeing what maybride (hehe that was my screename) has posted lately and it may take time to adjust but girls believe me when I say that in due time it will wear off! (And reassure your spouse that it will too)

In the mean time here are a few tips~

-You might try renting an especially funny movie, cuddle up and watch it at home together.
- How about starting a new hobby or reviving an existing one? A new and fun project together.
- Try and make sure you're getting enough to eat, enough sleep and enough exercise. Being tired or exhausted can leave you feeling down.
- Make a date! That's right make a date to go out someplace special or visit with family and friends.
- Have a game night. Pick up a fun game and have a few friends over for a game night.
- Change your normal routine up a bit so you don't get stuck in a rut.
- Try something new together. Ever been on a hot air balloon ride? How about horseback riding?
I hope some of these ideas help you out. And remember, each and every year you'll have a very special and new milestone to plan for and celebrate. Your anniversary!!

(This past May I let my husband plan our anniversary...He did an amazing job, dinner at one of my Fav restaurants on Sanibel and he even got us a room at this adorable B&B on Sanibel and brought some of the advise cards we got at our wedding so we could read them again....yes he is awesome!!)