Wedding Season 2012 Wrap Up

Well, it’s been quite the wedding season this year!

Wedding season opened up with my husband and I driving to Phoenix, Arizona, for one of my best friend’s weddings. ¬†I was honored that she asked me to officiate ūüôā

Photos by Jennifer Bowen Photography

 

Photos by Jennifer Bowen Photography

Courtney’s wedding was followed up with a Memorial Day Weekend wedding in Fullerton, California. ¬†This great couple found the Love Letter and Wine Box idea for their ceremony, which I absolutely loved.

Next up was my first gig as a second shooter for my husband, which was awesome. ¬†We got to work together all day, and with a truly amazing couple. ¬†You can see some of those photos over on Jeff’s website, here.

The month of June saw three more weddings for me.  One was in Dana Point, CA, and curiously enough in the same location as the first wedding I ever performed for Shirley and Seth.  It was pretty awesome to come full circle almost a year to the date from when I embarked on this adventure.

The next June wedding was for a great couple that got married on the US Marine base down in Oceanside. ¬†This wedding was special because I’ve known the groom’s sister since I was 14 or 15 years old. ¬†I actually met her while she was pregnant with her first son, who just started high school this year. ¬†Talk about time flying! ¬†Chuck and Anne were absolutely great to work with, and came up with vows idea on our blog.

Photo by Steven Theis

The last day of June was a very, very special occasion. ¬†Dana, a great and amazing friend from college, married Aaron, who is also a great and amazing person. ¬†This couple is one of those that I wished lived next door to my husband and I: we absolutely adore spending time with both of them. ¬†Although Dana and Aaron already had an officiant in the form of a rabbi, they asked me to be their day-of coordinator. ¬†I’ve already documented this incredible experience on the¬†blog, but I will say it again: I loved it!

Fourth of July weekend Jeff and I were invited to a wedding in San Francisco, for my college roommate, and we had a great time being guests with zero responsibilities, but we couldn’t help but scope out the competition! ūüėČ

The rest of July built up for my second job as a second-shooter with Jeff, and I gotta say, it turned out great.  This was a pretty challenging wedding due to the location and lighting, but Jeff worked really hard to make these pictures beautiful.  You can check out pictures here and here.

The month of August didn’t see any weddings for The Merry Ministers, but it did involve a lot of work: I have four weddings booked for October, and being that I’ll be on vacation the whole month of September, August was the month to meet with clients, prepare ceremony transcripts, and make sure everything is ready for when we get back! ¬†October will see me at Strawberry Farms in Irvine (a BEAUTIFUL venue), a beach wedding in Laguna Beach, another wedding in Beaumont, California, and wrapping up the month with a wedding at a stunning venue in Santa Paula, CA. ¬†October will be a busy month, but I’m so excited to meet all these new couples and explore some new areas in California!

Until then…happy planning!

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This and That, kind of

When I started this website I wanted to share new and exciting ideas that I came across on various blogs and forums¬†with all of you. ¬†It’s a little time consuming the way that I’ve been doing it, so I don’t get around to it as often as I’d like.

What I do quite often, however, is pin stuff to my Wedding Shenanigans, Wedding Photo Ideas, and Party Ideas boards on Pinterest. ¬†I’m trying to figure out how to link it to this blog, but until then, feel free to follow those boards on Pinterest so you can find cool ideas for your wedding day!¬†

And if any of you have the technical know-how to get those linked to here, I’d be forever grateful ūüôā

New Services: Event Coordinator!

This past weekend I had the wonderful opportunity to coordinate a wedding for a very good college friend of mine. ¬†I can’t thank her enough for really encouraging me to take the next step in what I hope is a long and fruitful career in event planning and coordination.

I’m not sure that any other paid job has felt as perfect of a fit as this did. ¬†With every other job, there are things that I like about it, and things I absolutely hate, and like most people, I did it because the bills needed to get paid.

The bills still need to get paid, but I really really enjoyed the coordinating, running back and forth, and generally making every one else’s life a little easier in any way that I could. ¬†It also helped that my husband was there to help with certain things, like putting up lights and keeping me sane, haha. ¬†What was great was that it started out as a super small favor, just helping the bridal party know when to walk down the aisle, etc., but it turned into a full blown wedding coordinator job (including handing out payments to the DJ, photographer, and rabbi)–I love that they trusted me with all the little details that needed taking care of.

I realized right away that I loved my clipboard and time line, and I enjoyed rounding up people for the photographer, getting the bridal party in line for their grand entrance, letting people know what they had to do next, etc. ¬†I probably went up to my husband at least four times and said “I’m loving this!”

I loved being able to tell the nervous and anxious mothers of the bride and groom: “don’t worry, I’m gonna take care of everything, you just relax and enjoy the wedding.” ¬†And I did, and they did, and all was great!

My favorite part, hands down, was the AMAZING emergency kit that the bride made for me, with future events in mind.

This thing has e-vry-thing, including a mini hot glue gun!  Which totally came in handy when one of the flower clips for the flower girls came apart.  Sewing kit?  Yes.  Mints and gum?  Yes.  Bobby pins?  Yes.  Bandaids, floss and tums?  Yes, yes, and yes.  This little thing came in handy more than once on Saturday!  And it all conveniently stacks up:

Pretty neat, huh?

Granted, the day wasn’t perfect, but it’s a wedding and some things are bound to happen or go slightly astray. ¬†Like one of the ring bearers running off to frolick in the trees (there was a back up ring bearer who did a fantastic job by himself), or the valet guys leaving before I had a chance to give them their ca-a-ash (the caterer knows them and was able to take their payment to them). ¬†But for a first time event, I’d like to think I did all right.

I can’t thank this couple enough for the opportunity and allowing me to explore another side of weddings and event planning that I had never really considered before, but absolutely loved! ¬†As a close friend, I am so incredibly excited for them and know they will continue to be an absolutely amazing couple, and as their wedding coordinator: I couldn’t have asked for a more organized, prepared, and laid back couple!

Mazel tov!

Short and Meaningful Wedding Vows

I love this idea, and I’m keeping the samples used by a client ūüôā

The Bride/Groom says three things they love about the other.  For example:

  • I love you because you’re a snappy dresser
  • I love you because you killed that spider
  • I love you because you’re nifty
Then three things they will do because they love each other:
  • Because I love you, I will complement you on your snappy dressery
  • Because I love you, I will kill the spiders
  • Because I love you, I will take a shower every day

Like I said, short and sweet, but I love the uniqueness of it, and how absolutely endearing it is!

Love Letter and Wine Box Ceremony

Here is what you will need:

  • A wooden wine box
  • a bottle of your favorite wine
  • two love letters sealed in separate envelopes
  • a small hammer and several nails
  • Optional: a polaroid camera to snap a shot of your guests and include in your box

Wine Box Options:

A few weeks before the wedding, take some time to each write a letter to one another, expressing your thoughts about the good qualities that you found in your future partner, the reasons for falling in love with them and your hopes and dreams for the future. In other words, you write a “love letter” to each other and place it in a sealed envelope, with the name of your partner on the outside. Do not read what the other has written.

Be creative with the box by putting foam inside to support the wine bottle. Line the inside with satin material. You can also include CDs of your favorite music, favorite pictures of you together, and other mementos making it your own romantic time capsule. Keep the box in a place of honor as a constant visual reminder of your love and commitment to each other. The box can be a life preserver in years to come.

The Wine Box should be opened on your 5th wedding anniversary.

There is only one other reason the box should be opened before your anniversary. If there should come a time when you hit a bumpy road in your relationship, before you give up or make any irrational decisions, open the Wine Box. The hope is that there will never be a reason to have to open the box except on your anniversary!

Hit a rough spot in your relationship? Sit down together, open the box, uncork the wine and unseal the envelopes that you wrote for one another before your wedding, go to separate rooms and quietly read the love letter.

Even if you are not seeing eye-to-eye at that very moment, it will remind you of all the reasons you choose this person as your partner and all the things that helped shape the life they’ve created together. Never take your blessings of being together for granted.

The romantic sentiments you wrote, the declaration of love, the clear thoughts about why you chose this person as your life partner will help put you back on even ground. This is the perfect ritual to remind you of your wedding day and your intention to love and cherish each other in good times and bad for as long as you both shall live.

Toward the end of your ceremony the Officiant will state the purpose of the “Love Letter & Wine Box Ceremony.”

The Officiant will elaborate on the reasons for the sealed love letters, place the sealed envelopes in with the wine bottle and will speak about the exercise that you went through. It should be emphasized that the letters have not been read by the Officiant or by anyone else.

The box will then be nailed shut (or locked). The Officiant begins with the first nail, followed by the Bride and Groom sealing the box shut. You can have each member of your wedding party step up and nail the box shut.

If you use a custom made wine box with two keys, the bride and groom each use a key and lock the box.

Your guests will be pleased to have been a witness to something so unique and different at your wedding ceremony.

The Hand Ceremony

This was a great idea used by a couple recently.  They did this in addition to having a commemorative part to their ceremony, but I think it could easily be used as your commemorative portion.  I absolutely love the meaning and language!

 

And now, Bride, if you would face Groom and hold his hands palms up, so you may see the gift that they are to you.

These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and vibrant with love, which is holding yours on your wedding day, as he promises to love you all the days of his life.

These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future, as you laugh and cry, as you share your innermost secrets and dreams.

These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, for a lifetime of happiness.

These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes: tears of sorry and tears of joy.

These are the hands that will comfort you illness, and hold you when fear or grief overwhelms you.

These are the hands that will tenderly lift your chin and brush your cheek as they raise your face to look into his eyes; eyes that are filled completely with his overwhelming love and desire for you.

Groom, please hold Bride’s hands, palms up, where you may see the gift that they are to you.

These are the hands of your best friend, young and carefree, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as she promises to love you all the days of your life.

These are the hands that will hold each child in tender love, soothing them through illness and hurt, supporting and encouraging them along the way, and knowing when it is time to let go.

These are the hands that will hold you tight as you struggle through difficult times.

These are the hands that will comfort you when you are sick, or console you when you are grieving.

They are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, for a lifetime of happiness.

These are the hands that will give you support as she encourages you to chase down your dreams.  Together, as a team, everything you wish for can be realized.

A Little Bit of This, A Little Bit of That

I love veranda’s and plantation style¬†homesOutdoor chandeliers, yes please.

Stunning Winter wedding

Vintage photo wall

Photo Booth Save-the-Dates

A wedding with a view

Love the yellow door!

Great “first sight” idea, and great pictures!

Pillows on haystacks ūüôā

Are you a coffee lover?

Love the men’s attire and all the little details

Rustic wedding with personalized beer glasses

Trees, lanterns, and mason jars!

Who doesn’t want llamas at their wedding venue?!

Barns and converse

A nice vintage-ey DIY project

Love this color combo!

Yellow, lace, winnebago, suspenders, and DIY details

Pie pops, yum ūüôā

Beautiful entrance

Great photo ideas

Ice-cream bar

Baby’s breath bouquets are in!

DIY chalkboard idea

Together, we can climb walls!

So many cute things going on here!

Central park elopement, it’s the simple things in life ‚̧

Ceremony under a tree

Who says you have to “walk” down the aisle?!

Adventures in Wedding Planning: Sparklers for your wedding

Sparklers for your wedding

New Years was a week or so ago, but don’t put away those sparklers just yet!

There is a use for them besides just celebrating the arrival of the new year! Incorporating sparklers into weddings is something we just love!

And they make for some seriously fun pictures!

via Adventures in Wedding Planning: Sparklers for your wedding.

Help us pick a logo!

I’m not sure why I posted this originally on my personal blog rather than here, but alas, it’s done. ¬†And rather than having two separate comment sections going (if I can be so lucky), I would ask that you please click here and vote for your favorite logo!

A massive shout out to my friend Rama who designed each of these. ¬†She’s pretty amazing.