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I spent two summers while in college working as a waitress at a dude ranch in Colorado. The experience was nothing less than incredible. Years later, I have wonderful friends that I still keep in touch with as well as an amazing husband. I still think back to those summers because I learned how hard work really pays off and how much I enjoyed putting together all the food events for the guests. The ranch always hired staff from the South because the owners said they always received compliments on their friendly service from guests...My boss' response was "It's just Southern Hospitality." It was not until I began planning my wedding that I realized how I had missed my calling. I wish I could say I am a successful event planner living my dream, but I am not just yet and hope that collecting my ideas and sharing them will be a start (thanks Molly). Enjoy!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Fall Wedding- Tuscumbia, AL

Yes, this is very overdue but better late than never! I was very fortunate to have a good friend I grew up with call me to help with his wedding.  Heath and Mary married on October 30th in Tuscumbia, AL.  Their ceremony was at First Presbyterian Church and the reception was at Locust Hill.  The church and venue were very unique.  First Presbyterian is one of the oldest Presbyterian churches in Alabama and Helen Keller was baptized there.  Locust Hill has been renovated and hosts numerous events every year but long ago it served as a conferderate hospital during the Civil War.www.locusthillevents.com

Wedding details: 
-Paper Chase in Decatur, AL did her invitations and programs, http://thepaperchasedecatur.com
-Armosa Studios did her photography and videography-They did such an amazing job and were such a nice couple, http://armosastudios.com/?s=mary+and+heath&x=0&y=0
-Jackie Hendrix with Party Pros in Florence set up the tent outside in the yard and took care of the other rental equipment, http://partyprosusa.com
-Rhoda Plain, with Rhoda P's Catering, did the delicious buffet, http://www.rhodapscatering.com/index.html
-Lola's Gifts and Flowers did an amazing job, http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lolas-Gifts-and-Flowers/158599527495310?sk=wall
-They did cute white personalized cups for beer, www.discountfavors.com, and beige personalized cocktail napkins, www.foryourparty.com
-To embrace fall and Halloween, Mary made cookies with candy corn topping for wedding favors and her guest book was two artificial pumpkins for guests to "carve" their name on
-Out of town guests stayed at the Marriott Shoals Hotel & Spa. Heath's mom made welcome bags for guests by filling cute pumpkin boxes with goodies

Baby boo pumpkins were even incorporated in the fruit arrangement!
Thank you Heath & Mary for letting me be a part of your day.  Also a special thank you to my assistant that day, Molly Wallace...could not have done it without you! 

“Expect the best, plan for the worst, and prepare to be surprised.”
-Denis Waitley

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Fall is Here and I Love Pumpkins

If you are getting married in the Fall, maybe some of these ideas will encourage you to use pumpkins!  It is a great way to save money and be festive! 

You can use pumpkins as vases for flowers
Fall Decor Crafts and more creative crafts projects, templates, tips, clip-art, patterns, and ideas on marthastewart.com

I love this one...Using a pumpkin as a cooler- Serve a seasonal beer too!
Ideas: Samuel Adams- Octoberfest, Blue Moon- Harvest Moon, or Leinenkugel- Oktoberfest

Use baby pumpkins for place cards

Carving pumpkins is not just a fun thing to do for Halloween-
Be creative...carve an initial or fall leaves

This is one of my favorite ideas and would be great at the entrance to your rehearsal dinner or reception.  Urns are easy to find or you may already have one that you can use from your own front porch.

If your rehearsal dinner or reception venue has a fireplace place pumpkins, gourds, and fall foliage around it for a great festive and cozy look.

Other fall arrangement ideas

Use baby pumpkins to hold pumpkin soup or a cranberry-raisin bread pudding that you serve at your rehearsal dinner or reception 

Unique idea...pumpkins are used to line the path from the parking lot to the reception

Use baby pumpkins as votive candle holders in a fall foliage chandelier or just use the pumpkins as votive holders and place them on tables at your rehearsal dinner or reception (great size to have on bistro tables at a reception)

If you are not a big fan of orange, you can find pumpkins in various colors.
These baby boo pumpkins are great to use for a wedding

You can also put these baby boo pumpkins in a tall vase layered with green hypericum berries

Nailheads could definitely give pumpkins a new look! 

Placing a variety of pumpkins on steps is a simple but great look and most venues have a few steps in the front, inside, or back

“Four steps to achievement: Plan purposefully. Prepare prayerfully. Proceed positively. Pursue persistently”
-William Ward

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Each Begins with the Letter "C"

From the article "Building a strong marriage takes work" by Dr. Billy Graham

My husband and I were thinking back to what we were doing this time last year.  We were packing to move from our rental house to our first home.  We were excited to say the least.  Everything had gone very smoothly with finding our soon-to-be home, getting approved, making an offer, etc.  But our smooth ride came to an abrupt halt.  At the end of this October, we will have been in our house for a year.  Gosh a year, but what a year it has been....from living in hotel after hotel for a month, changing jobs,  fixing up our home, starting a blog, buying a boat, to continuously learning about each other (and our dogs!) and much more.  
My Mom gave me an article a few months back she had saved about building a strong marriage.  After my discussion with my husband about our past year, I felt the need to find this article.  It is short and sweet but says so much... 

How to build a strong marriage in four simple points....Each Begins with the Letter "C"

1. Cherish
God gave you to each other; you are God's gift to your spouse.  Take time to express your love, both by your words and by little acts of thoughtfulness- a surprise gift, a special time away, a favorite dinner.  
2. Communicate
Let each other know what's going on in your life at home or at work.  Don't clam up; don't nag or only express yourself when you're upset.  The Bible says, "A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver" Proverbs 25:11
3. Compromise
The greatest enemy of love is our selfishness, but in marriage you can't always have your own way, so learn to compromise with grace.  The Bible says, "Love does not demand its own way" 1 Corinthians 13:5
4. Christ
Make Christ the center of your lives and your marriage every day, by committing yourself to him and his will.

I am going to add a 5th point to make this my own
5. Caldwell
I have learned that it doesn't matter what type of home you have or where you live to begin your marriage/ life together...It's just being together that makes everything worthwhile.  

Can't wait for what lies ahead! 

“Unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes; but no plans.”
-Peter F. Drucker

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Rolling with the Tide...Wedding Reception at "The Zone"

One of my friends got married at the beginning of August in Tuscaloosa, AL.  Of course I was excited to go because I wanted to see my friend get married, I love weddings, and of course I had to see a wedding reception in The Zone.  For those of you that have not been able to attend an Alabama Football game in The Zone,  this area is very large and packed with large banquet tables of food, popcorn and stadium dog stands, many tables and chairs, and of course people!  The Zone is a great addition to Alabama's stadium and numerous events have been held there since it was constructed.  Needless to say, I had to see how my friend was going to turn this area into something other than a place to watch football.  I took a few pictures to capture flower arrangements and such, but I mainly wanted to show how adding nice gold bamboo chairs, ivory sheen tablecloths, and flowers can really change a venue.  If you ever come across a venue that you are not sure about because of the carpet, accent colors, etc. please do not give up hope! The Zone has red carpet, yes red, and I seriously did not notice it!

She used the bar area that was already provided as well as an additional bar on the other side of the room.  The bars had personalized koozies for everyone to grab and use right then or take with them.  The flower arrangements were assembled differently throughout the room and had a wide variety of bright colored summer flowers- perfect for August.  There were numerous tall arrangements on the main 60 inch round tables which were all towards the center of the room.  These tall arrangements immediately caught my eye as I entered the room.  The tablecloths were an ivory sheen that complimented the colorful flowers.  The food tables had a large arrangement in the center that was gorgeous.  Towards the back of the room there was a potato bar and many small tables.

The reception was a lot of fun. Good food, good friends, good times! The band was awesome and had everyone dancing.  I especially loved the spacious dance floor.  The room was so large that my friends and I had our own little dance party towards the end of the night! Another great aspect was that you could actually have a conversation by just walking ten feet away from the band.  Many venues cannot provide the greatest space for all the tables, chairs, food tables, bar, stage, band, lights, etc. My next tip- Do not be afraid of a large room.  Find the pros instead of the cons. The room will eventually come together, I promise!
There were sparklers for everyone to take by the exit.  The sparklers were in two tall glass vases filled with glass marbles on the gift table.  All the guests lined up by the stadium's entrance and the happy couple ran through our sparklers and left in a limo. Very picturesque!!

“Expect the best, plan for the worst, 
and prepare to be surprised.”
-Denis Waitley