Thursday, March 5, 2015

7 Sexy White Swimsuits for Your Beach Honeymoon

With wedding season around the bend, I know there are lots of brides out there dreaming about their big day, not to mention that long-awaited honeymoon that follows. Couples will flock to warm climates, palm-lined beaches, and coconut concoctions. If you're one of those beachy honeymoon brides, don't forget to pack that sexy, little wedding-white swimsuit. Here are a 7 that are sure to turn your hubby's head.

Mikoh Namotu Bikini

Victoria's Secret Fringe Top & Bottom
Jessica Simpson Swimdress
Victoria's Secret Cut-out One-piece
Chloe Halterneck
Marysia Scallop Bikini
Lisa Maree Lace One-piece

Friday, February 20, 2015

Honeymoon Spotlight: San Antonio, Texas

San Antonio is home to the Alamo, Riverwalk, and a really big pair of cowboy boots. Those things are great, but they're not all this south Texas city has to offer. If you're looking for a lively city with a hometown feel for your honeymoon, look no further.

Where To Stay

Arbor House Suites - An historic bed & breakfast with Victorian charm. Offers a honeymoon suite (Jacuzzi suite), private balconies, and a garden space to enjoy each morning's continental breakfast. Conveniently located near restaurants and San Antonio's most popular sites: Alamo, Majestic Theatre (sitting in a private box is a real treat!), riverboat tours, and the King William District (gorgeous historic mansions, some available for viewing).

Menger Hotel

Menger Hotel - If you want to stay in style, consider the Menger Hotel, the "oldest continuously operating hotel west of the Mississippi." Historic icons like Teddy Roosevelt and Babe Ruth hung their boots at the Menger, and it served as a meeting place for Texas titans in oil and politics. At the Menger you'll find luxurious and exquisitely designed rooms, a heated pool, hot tub, fitness center, an in-house restaurant and bar, and a spa offering couples' massage.

P.S. the hotel is considered haunted. You can learn more about its history and ghost stories over dinner when you reserve a space with The Sister's Grimm Ghost Tour.

What To Do

Market Square Dancers via CNN

I could on for days about all the things to do and explore in San Antonio. There are the major attractions like the Alamo Mission, Hemisfair Park (which houses the Tower of the Americas), and the Riverwalk (a downtown mecca of restaurants, bars, arts & crafts, and shopping).

But if you're looking for something a little more off the beaten path consider:

Market Square - Okay, so it's not completely off the beaten path, but it's worth mentioning. Immerse yourself in San Antonio's rich culture throughout the plazas of Market Square. It's the oldest Mexican market in the U.S. and features working artists, musicians, dancers, and shops selling artisan goods. You might even catch an Hispanic festival and dance to the music of a mariachi band.

Japanese Tea Garden - Take a stroll through exotic flowers, watch colorful koi, and marvel under the waterfall. Afterward, enjoy a delicious Asian dish at the Jingu House Cafe.

Helicopter Tour - see the Alamo city from the sky.

Arts & Culture - Explore the city's art scene at one of the many museums and galleries. Even the library is a work of art!

Where to Eat

The Guenther House by Kupdegra via Trip Advisor

The Cove - I have to mention The Cove because it's so unique and the food is amazing. Everything they serve, from the fish tacos to the beef burgers, is sustainable, organic, and local. What makes The Cove unique is that it's not only a restaurant, but a beer garden (with over 50 Texas beers), live music venue, laundromat, and car wash. They offer 3rd Thursday wine tastings and 4th Thursday beer tastings.

Candlelight Coffee House - If you're looking for a romantic setting, Candlelight has it. Plush seats, low lighting, and candles set the scene. Sip wine over dinner (over 60 to choose from) or enjoy a specialty coffee with brunch.

The Guenther House - Wake up early and head to The Guenther House for sweet cream waffles and seasonal fruits. Then stroll through the Guenther museum, Victorian parlor, roof garden, and arbor & grounds.

Rio San Antonio Cruises - If you prefer your meal on water, sign up for a dinner cruise and float by boat down the Riverwalk.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Bridal Party Dilemma: How to Handle a Difficult Bridesmaid

Photo Source: Wedding Dash

From jealousy to dress disgust to micro managing, it's not always the bride who goes a little crazy during wedding planning. Bridesmaids have their shadow side too, and if you find yourself dealing with a difficult bridesmaid or maid of honor, don't fire her just yet. Keep these pointers in mind.

First and foremost, keep the lines of communication open at all times. Whether it's between you and an individual or you and the whole group, communication is key. Encourage the bridal party to communicate with each other as well. Wedding planning is a team effort.

Let your bridesmaids know that if they have a problem or concern, they're welcome to come to you and discuss the issue. The worst thing you or any of the bridal party members can do is keep quiet and brush concerns under the rug. It's bound to build up and explode in a dusty mess.

Be Honest
Get your bridesmaids together and let them know what you expect from them and what your vision is for the wedding. Be honest with them about their duties, what kind of dresses you envision them in, the amount of money you think they'll need for dress/accessories, etc. Knowing up front what you want leaves less room for unwanted surprises later on. Plus, if a 'maid doesn't think she'll be able to take on certain responsibilities or afford to actually be a bridesmaid, she can kindly bow out or talk to you about her concerns.

Abby Grace Photography via Green Wedding Shoes

Stay Flexible
Even though you have a vision for your wedding that you'll share with your bridesmaids, you must also remain flexible if every little detail doesn't manifest in the way you had hoped. If a bridesmaid is late getting a particular task done or is falling behind on her duties, don't assume that she's just being lazy or doesn't care about you enough to help out. Try to understand what her situation is and where she's coming from. Talk it out. Remain flexible and open to new ways of getting things done.

Respect & Appreciation
It's easy to get caught up in wedding planning and keeping the spotlight on you. It's your wedding, after all. But many times people act out because they don't feel appreciated or respected. If your bridesmaid busted her butt putting together your paper lanterns and didn't get so much as a thank you from you, she might get upset, and rightly so.

Your bridesmaids have their own lives and you must remember that they can't always drop everything to help you with your wedding. Respect their situations and their feelings, and always, always let them know how much you appreciate their help, support, and friendship.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

6 Bridal Shower Gifts for a Bohemian Bride

Is your bride-to-be gal pal a free spirit kind of girl with eclectic tastes? Is her bridal shower right around the corner? Have you found her a gift yet? No worries! Here are some gift ideas that any bohemian bride would be truly thankful for.

Bohemian Bride Gift Ideas

1. A handmade woven blanket is an especially practical gift for fall and winter brides, but it's so beautiful that she'll want to display it all year round. Perfect for snuggling at the beach, campsite, or outdoor festival. Free People, $78

2. This soothing spell bath blend is a mix of lavender, rose buds, white willow, eucalyptus, calendula flower, sage, and juniper and can be used as a facial steam or bath enhancer. Free People, $28

3. Salt lamps are said to emit negative ions, which in turn decrease positive ions, or "electronic smog" (tv screens, computer monitors, microwaves, smoke, etc.). Having one is kind of like having your own mini salt mine or a room full of ocean air. It's a natural relaxation aid. Mystic Crystal Imports, $27

4. What bohemian woman doesn't love a dreamcatcher? This one is aptly named "The Bride" and is a perfect addition to the newlywed's bedroom. Studio Yuki, $59

5. If she's the artsy type, she'll love this watercolor print of a girl wearing the quintessential boho accessory - a flower crown! Maybe package it with a crown of her own. Pink Puddle Studio, $13

6. There's no such thing as having too many clutches, especially when they're as cute as this one. It's the perfect size for everyday use or as a tablet carrier. Summerland, $64

Thursday, January 8, 2015

6 Groomsmen Gifts the Guys Will Love

Wedding blogs talk a lot about the bride and bridal party, but what about the guys we love so much? For today's post, the ladies are taking a back seat and we're talking about the men - specifically the groomsmen. What do you gift the dudes that support hubs-to-be and play such an integral part in the wedding? Here are some ideas.

1. Tool Bottle Opener
A cheeky little bottle opener hand-forged to mimic the look and feel of classic tools. Comes in four styles: hammer, pincer, pliers, wrench. Buy the lot and pass them 'round. Poketo, $25 per tool

2. PGS Whiskey Aftershave
Here's an aftershave that has it all: essential oils and willow bark extract to keep skin clear; sea kelp extract and blue-green algae to deliver phytonutrients and sea water minerals to skin; and amber and sea salt for that pine and whiskey scent. Kaufmann Mercantile, $17.95

3. Caricature Beer Mugs
Because who doesn't want a hand-painted caricature of themselves on a beer mug? Crystal Peace Studio, $70 per mug

4. Beer Soap 6 Pack
Here's a 6-pack of beer that won't cause a hangover. Each hand-brewed soap is a mix of essential oils, natural oils, cosmetic clay and rosemary oleoresin (antioxidant), and the fresh scent of freshly brewed lager, ale, stout, and porter. Give each guy an individual soap or a gift box with the whole assortment. Uncommon Goods, $50

5. Marshall's Haute Sauce
I don't know too many guys who don't like a tasty hot sauce. These are extra special, homegrown sauces that are imbued with seasonally harvested vegetables and spices and are both vegetarian and gluten-free. Choose from Smoked Habanero BBQ, Serrano Ginger Lemongrass, Red Chili Lime, or Habanero Carrot Curry. Kaufmann Mercantile, $11.95

6. Himalayan Salt BBQ Plank
A nifty multi-tasking cooking tool that can be chilled to serve cold dishes like sushi and cheese or heated and used as a grill for veggies. Plus, the salt content adds a bit of flavor to whatever is being cooked or served on it. Uncommon Goods, $29.99

Friday, December 19, 2014

Wedding Trends for 2015

It's almost time to wave goodbye to 2014 and welcome the new year with a big lipstick-red smooch. And with that, we also say hello to all the lovely wedding trends popping up like blooming wildflowers. It's never too early to start planning and dreaming up ways to incorporate these ideas.

Calligraphy Invitations
Sarah Gluchacki | Jessica Tierney | Patricia Mumau
Move over bold typography and make way for sweeping romance. The vintage charm of a handwritten letter is making a comeback. Calligraphy prints can be as over-the-top or simple as you want them to be. Add a few lines in a simple font for a more modern look or print the whole invitation in grand lettering for that ink and quill feel.

Organic Bouquets
Jason and Anna Photography via Ruffled | Zephyros Farm & Garden | Amanda K. via Trendy Bride
Think wildflowers, unstructured, straight-from-the-earth bouquets. You can even incorporate other natural elements like wheat, fruits, and herbs. 

Mirelle Carmichael Photography via The Frosted Petticoat | Fly Away Bride | Lavender & Twine via Green Wedding Shoes
Kites as decor, kites as guestbooks, flying kites! If you're tired of giant balloons, consider the humble kite. It's the perfect accessory to a spring wedding, whether used as decoration or actually flown. Plus, they make for great guest favors. 

Flower & Moss Lettering
Emily Steffen Photography via Wedding Chicks | Vintage Shore | Paeony Floral Design
Whether it's flowers and moss or just moss used for lettering, this trend is perfect for a garden wedding or for a couple who wants a more organic look. 

Neon Lights
Rebecca Douglas via Love My Dress | Brilliant Imagery via Little Vegas Wedding | TTM Events
It's not just an 80's thing. Custom signs lit up with bright neon colors really add a pop to drab walls and dark spaces. Use mini neon signs as table centerpieces or light up the walls with some lovey dovey text.

Interactive Food Stations
Rex and Regina via Weddings Illustrated | Clayton Austin via Weddings Illustrated | The Party Dress
Food bars are an unexpected way to delight your guests. 
"No two people are alike, which means that no two palates are alike. Creating food stations or bars gives guests a way to customize your menu choices to their tastes. It's a way to cater to every kind of eater - those who don't like too much sauce or those who prefer a little more garlic. The use of stations will also get guests out of their seats, perfect for mingling and conversing." - Weddings Illustrated
And there are a multitude of options - everything from pancake bars to cocktail mixers to build-your-own pizzas.

Video Booths
The Knot Australia | Huffington Post | FD Weddings
No doubt, photo booths were a huge hit in 2014, but now it's time to shake things up and put a little twist on the old photo. Enter video booths! Have guests record a message instead of signing a guestbook or let them do their own thing in front of the camera. You're sure to collect plenty of laugh-worthy moments.