Man Monday

[note- this was supposed to be posted yesterday, and the title is too fun to change]

Buzzfeed is impressing me with the amount of wedding related articles they post (and on a regular basis). I’m always looking for articles that could catch the eyes of men since my audience is 98.5% female- thanks ladies so here you have it- a great article on how to be a Better Best Man

1. Make a list of duties.

In addition to the obvious ones, there’s delivering the fee to the wedding officiant, signing the marriage license and much more. Check out this Real Simple checklist for a comprehensive list.

2. Make sure your suit actually fits.

The groom may choose the suit style and tie color, but not looking like a baggy mess is on you.
Source: blog.next.co.uk  /  via: infographichub.com

3. Get the shoes right.
Source: pinterest.com

4. Clip-ons need not apply.
Source: jaredpurrington.com  /  via: pinterest.com

5. Wear the best boutineer ever.  For you truly are The Hand. Get it here.
Source: reddit.com

6. If you’re booking hotel rooms for the bachelor party, haggle.
Saving all the groomsmen cash with a group rate or wrangling some upgrades is a good look. Here are some booking tips.

7. Or, just use Airbnb or HomeAway.
It’ll usually be cheaper and it’s a nice antidote to the cliche “suite at the Palms” style bro blowout.

8. On the wedding day, come prepared.
Everyone else will either be too nervous or too wasted to think about maybe needing sewing supplies or Advil. Instant stain remover also essential.
Source: etsy.com

9. Don’t trust the ring bearer.
Cute? Sure. To be trusted with 2398723 carats? Nope. Give ‘em a knockoff and keep the real rock in your pocket.

10. Do not prance, cartwheel or moonwalk down the aisle.
This day isn’t about you, buddy.

11. Keep your toast to a few short remarks and drop the mic.
There’s nothing worse than a long rambling speech. Also important: don’t try to be funny if you’re not. IT WILL NOT END WELL.
Source: leodirac

12. Don’t read from prepared remarks.
It’s better to just speak from your heart if you get lost. People respond to realness, even if you flounder a bit.

13. For more speech advice, try Reddit.
Yes, really. There are a lot of surprisingly helpful tips in this thread. And only one finger bang reference.

14. Once the real party starts, have taxi service information ready.
For… overly enthusiastic guests.
Source: joshbousel

15. Don’t forget to dance with moms.
You should be the party glue.
Source: marybethtyson.com  /

16. If you’re going to decorate the wedding car, keep it simple.

17. Above all, stick to your groom.
Whenever you catch yourself having a great time, stop and make sure your best friend is having an even better time.

Source: pinterest.com


Hooray for Dads!

Wishing everyone a very happy Friday and start to their weekend.  Sunday is Fathers Day, so take some extra time to thank, hug, kiss, and be thankful for the man who thinks you are sugar and spice, and everything nice.

Happy Father's Day dads!

Source: Buzzfeed


Tiny Bubbles

Two of my friends got engaged to each other a week ago and I'm completely thrilled for them.  I haven't asked or received permission to announce an offical CL congratulations, but was inspired by a side conversation I had with the bride.  Nothing official but she expressed how nice it would be to just have a really small wedding somewhere else.... like Hawaii.  My friends are extremely hip and laid back so this would be totally up their alley.  Keeping them and Hawaii in mind, this is what came to be.

Photo Sources:  Dress, Bella Figura "Spinnerette", Sunset wedding, Flowers, garland, Radiant sandal, JCrew three link bracelet, JCrew golden twist bracelet, votive holders, scenery, postcard, don't forget to be awesome


Diamonds Are a Mans Best Friend.

Ooh whaaaaat? There’s been some debate as to how much involvement a woman should have when picking out her engagement ring. Men, lets be honest this is something that we’ve been thinking about for a LONG time.  Its something that we are going to brag about, show off, and presumably look down at every 5 minutes and gitty smile over for a while.  It’s a bright sparkly thing that we get to keep- what’s not to love?

How much involvement do you want your woman to have? Do you mind subtle hints? Pictures? Detailed-descriptions or an all-out trip to the jewelry store.

I do think an element of surprise should still exist- if a girl knows exactly what she’s receiving it takes away some of the excitement and mystery. Just a little though- you asking her is the biggest surprise, honor and joy she is going to experience. The ring is just the icing on the cake.

Obviously discussing marriage before popping the question should be something that is mutual known and agreed upon before ring shopping occurs. But when it comes up she’ll let you know. Typically a picture or a description will come your way. Then there’s a more involved process- we’re going shopping together. Ladies- trust your man to know what you want. Trust that post-it note you gave him that says “Solitaire, pave band, raised basket”.  When you are clear in your description the jeweler will know exactly what he is looking for.

I was at work last week and a fellow colleague was congratulating another girl who had recently gotten engaged and she said “This isn’t the setting, but the stone”. I didn’t get that at all. It looked like a great ring, but are you that unhappy with the setting?  She could’ve meant that the band needed to be readjusted??  I wonder as a man how you would feel if the woman you presented a ring with said, I love you, and I love the stone, but I’d like to change the setting- slippery slope! Eeek. The flip side of that is men, do your research. Know what tastes your woman has an what she’d like. It’ll help muchos.

Regarding familial rings there is a deep sentimental value attached to rings and the importance of them being passed through the family is clear.  Already-there rings should be discussed, and their importance taken into consideration. Antique rings are hard to come by- appreciate them for what they are, unique and timeless. 

Sometimes it’s the woman who has a ring. Either passed down from their parents or grandparents and this is something she will want to keep and use. This is not a sham on your man-hood or ability to provide her with the ring she wants. It’s a testament to the long standing sentimental value the ring has AND besides there are plenty of other things you can provide for and purchase- i.e. your actual wedding bands. 

Photo Source: Bride Wars


Photo Op!

Leave it to the pros (BHLDN) to show us how it's done.  I love visuals, so take it away!


Keep It In The Family

I attended my friends’ wedding in Austin, Texas in April and it was absolutely lovely. If you haven’t gone to visit Austin I highly suggest it. It’s a hybrid of Brooklyn and LA plunked in its own little pocket in the lone star state. Other than the gorgeous weather, lack of humidity, and overall scenery, Austin offers a bike and pedestrian friendly city. I digress, per usual...

Guests arrived at  The Allen House located in downtown Austin and were instantly taken away by the scene. Umbrellas and chandeliers hung in the tree branches and provided a blanket of romantic light above our heads (thank to Christina Lewis of Wedding Warriors) . As soon as cocktail hour was over, we picked our table cards and took our seats. On each place setting.... the menu!  Myself and two other friends scrolled the list of items that we thought we had to choose from. We waited for the staff to come around and take our orders and then it happened…. The wait staff didn’t bother taking orders, they just put perfectly portioned family-style dishes around the table. Absolutely delightful and Photography by the Chad + Tressie at Two Pair Photography

Romaine Chiffonade with red wine vinaigrette served with caramelized with shallot & gorgonzola croustade with fig moustard

Bronzed Tilapia on reggianno arugula with tomato fennel broth
Truffled Mushroom Beef Medallions with pomme puree

Assortment of ice cream sandwiches 

Catering provided by Austin Catering and Coolhaus

Hand served by the Mr. & Mrs. - How cool are my friends?

Each table had 10 guests and two serving platters of each dish were placed on the table (in order of course otherwise there wouldn’t have been any room). 5 and 5.  Why do I think this is an awesome idea and one I’ll probably nab for my reception:

  1. Pick & Choose... And More!  If you’re a foodie like me, you always want to try as much as you can.  Having to pick just one option leaves you picking off of your friends plate or asking for a bite.  Family lets you sample as much or as little as you like. You also don’t have to worry about remembering what you checked off on your reply card for your meal. I have trouble remembering what I ate only 24 hours ago…. 6 months prior? Forget it.
  2. Save time. I attended a wedding once where the wait staff did a swirl around the table, stop, and arm swoop as they took orders, presented plates, and cleared them away. It was impressive and looked like it had been choreographed to mimic Be Our Guest from Disneys Beauty & The Beast but it took up a lot of time because there were only 2 sets of staff for a party of over 20 tables.  You’re going to be waiting a looooong time before your swirl, stop and swoop happen. With family style, food comes out at the same time for everyone- fabulous! 
  3. Save Some Dough.  Literally and figuratively. Family style reduces the amount of wait staff you need per table which can save you dollars. Instead of having 10 servers per table, you only need 2 or 3. You also can save on food cost because you are making food quantities based on the whole group, not individual people. It sounds backwards, but completely true. Portions are more manageable but there is actually more food to go around!
  4. Be Social!  I know that when it comes to eating out with my family we all sample what eachother has. Passing around plates and forkfuls is what we love best. Weddings bring people together and so does food. Family-style is a great way for you to talk with and get to know the new people at your table.  Thumbs up Anna & Ben, thumbs way way up!
  5. Totally Rocks.  I can’t tell you how excited all of us were at our table when we realized that we got to eat all of this food. I was at a restaurant in London and the dessert selection said “An Assortment of Sorbets and IceCream”. Well, that’s what I wanted and thought that description meant there was going to be a sampling of all of their flavors on one plate. Ummm, no. The waiter came around and asked me what I’d like to have and so I said “I’d like the assortment of sorbets and ice cream”- confusion all around.  That wasn't an option. Not even close. And then he made me choose, one type and one flavor, sigh. I felt a little devastated that I wasn’t going to get this beautiful plate of melon ball- sized sorbets and ice cream. Sad. So sad. So yes, thrill your guests by giving them everything- NOM FEST! 

Spread the love a little more with a family-style your reception. Great times, great people, and great food. Hooray!


And So It Begins!

Wishing everyone a very happy, safe, and absolutely wonderful Memorial Day weekend.  Summer has arrived!

Photo Source: We Heart It



10 Things To Do Before Your Wedding

I found this great post via Pinterest from Shefinds.com about 10 things to do the night before your wedding. Love this! 

Do a face mask
You want your skin to flawless, clean, and smooth on your wedding day. Your skin needs to be in prime condition for makeup application. I always suggest going to the spa 10 days prior to your wedding and booking a “just in case” dermatologist appointment 3 days prior, but doing a mild... repeat, mild mask will do your skin some good the night before!

Avoid using anything with a peel or tingle as it could irritate and redden your skin. Stick to shea butter, aloe, and cucumber. Nothing harmful can come from those (also make sure whatever you put on your face, youre not allergic too!)

Use an under-eye cream
Help reduce puffiness, lines, and dark circles with a night time under eye cream. My personal favorite is Kiehls avacado cream.  If you have sensitive skin, have no fear! Get a gel eye mask that you can store in the freezer over night. In the morning put the mask on your face while you eat your breakfast and enjoy your coffee/tea. You’ll look a little silly, but it’ll make for some great day of photos. 
Don’t drink
Shefinds says don’t drink. I say it’s ok to have a drink or 2 at your rehearsal dinner (obvi) and one small night cap before midnight is ok. One I say. One. I know personally when I drink my face gets a little puffy if i’m dehydrated, so if you're going to have a glass or 2, make sure to drink plenty of water. 

Set a bed time
I get it. This is your wedding day. It’s like every birthday, Christmas, graduation, and tooth-fairy visit combined, but you should still try to get as much rest as possible.  Since you’ll be getting up pretty early to begin hair/makeup, getting dressed, etc. you’ll want to try to get a good nights sleep. Midnight is pretty good, but anything after 1:00 AM you're probably pushing it. Don’t take any sleep aids of any kind- you don’t want to be groggy.  If you really can’t fall asleep just settle in bed, alone, and quietly watch some tv until you doze off. 

Don’t use social media (keep this time private)
I love this rule and completely agree with it so am just going to post shefinds.com verbatim...

“The most exciting part of a wedding is the big reveal when the bride finally enters the church and walks down the aisle. You want to hear everyone oohing and aahing, so don’t give them a pre-game show with constant status updates. Fall off the radar for a day or so in order for everyone to truly appreciate you as a bride.”- Shefinds.com

No texting with the husband
Kiss your sweetie goodnight at the rehearsal dinner and enjoy the excitement and anticipating for when you walk down the aisle. Constantly texting or calling doesn’t leave a whole lot of mystery for your special day. Allow your maid of honor and best man to do any communicating that needs to happen, but try to get the details ironed out ahead of time. 

Write a letter to your husband
Love. I think the written word is a true art form and one that is terribly underused. Writing letters is not only romantic, it takes courage to pen your truest feelings and deliver them to anyone. I love seeing Vimeos where a bride and groom write each other letters about how excited they are to marry that person- it gets them and me every time. 

Have one final meeting with your wedding planner
My thought is that this should happen at your rehearsal.  Your planner will be with you when yourself, the groom, parent,s in laws, and the entire wedding party are rehearsing lining up, walking down the aisle, photo bombing each other and so forth. Before you head off to the rehearsal dinner take the time to review everything prior to you leaving. 

Check in for your honeymoon flight
Most airlines allow you to check-in online 24 hours prior to your flight. Personally, I think you should give yourself 48 hours until you depart for your honeymoon. You are going to be tired, you're not going to want to rush, and just like your wedding, it’s so much better to travel when you're refreshed and relaxed...and not hungover By all means, go on a honeymoon the day after your wedding, but if you're holding off a day or two skip down to tip #10.

Watch a goofy, wedding romantic comedy with your girls
Okay, okay. I know I said have a reasonable bed time, but it's totally a great way to wind the night down with your girls and line up some wedding-related chick flicks like Father of the Bride or My Big Fat Greek Wedding and get into the wedding zone.

Some other suggestions
The Proposal
Sex and the City
Sweet Home Alabama
You’ve Got Mail
When Harry Met Sally