Thursday, May 31, 2012

Last Meeting with the Decorator

Two days before the wedding I met with Carlos,my decorator, to go over some last meeting details and to give him all my DIY projects he would have to set up. He went away with a glass bowl full of Jenga pieces and purple pens, the table numbers and seating lists, the striped straws and our cake topper.

We discussed all the flowers one last time and went over flower logistics. I have hydrangeas in my bouquet which tends to be a very delicate flower so he has to make my bouquet only a few hours before the ceremony, just after he finishes decorating. Since my wedding is at 9am and there is an event at my venue the night before, Carlos will have to pull an all nighter to get everything done. The party the night before stops at 12:30 am but he can't decorate until they finish all the cleaning at 2am. He is being such a good sport about it too!

Papi Boa whipped up a super handy layout of the venue in Autocad so we could clearly define where everything would go.

A - Table by the entrance with a bowl full of the Jenga pieces that will become our guestbook after our guest sign them.
B - Where the DJ will be
C - Mami Boa insisted on putting together a slideshow so this is where the screen will be. 
D- Our dance floor
E - Where the buffet will be located 
F - Where our ribbon seating list will be displayed towards the outside
G - table for the favors (more on them soon)
H - Our sweetheart table
I - Our cake table

We arranged the guest tables so that adults in our family will be the closest to us, our friends in the middle and the teenagers furthest away. Hopefully this provides a good flow of conversation since our guests will know most of the people they are seated around.

Did you plan a layout for your venue before the wedding?

Monday, May 28, 2012

My Dress is Sewn

Now that the wedding is over, I can show you how my dress looked at my last fitting 6 days from the wedding. First off I must say, I love love love love how my dress turned out, the fit, the fabric, it;'s all perfect. The designer took some creative liberty from the original design by adding a thicker sash (which I love) and by adding a huge bow. The bow makes the dress more high fashioned or something but it was definitely  not part of the romantic vibe I was going for.

I was really torn up about what to do; Should I embrace the awesomeness of the bow and forget my past vision or stay true to my wedding vision and get the bow taken off? I liked how the bow looked and Mami and Lil Boa went totally crazy over it but something just didn't feel right to me. I turned to the weddingbee boards in search of comfort and the Hive unanimously said I should get rid of the bow. I slept on it and in the morning called the designer to discuss an alteration. I explained I wasn't feeling the bow and  that I would feel more comfortable with it taken off and a smaller more delicate looking one be put in it's place. I was really nervous about the conversation but Jose Braulio was a champ about it, saying the important thing being that I felt comfortable on my wedding day. When I went to pick up my dress (the night before) and tried it on for the last time before the wedding I ultimately decided to eliminate the bow.

What are your thoughts ; Option A:Bow 
                                         Option B: No Bow

Originally the sleeves where going to be removable but we all loved how it looked and it was decided that they would be permanently put on the dress.

The dress was tiiiigggghhhhhhhttt. I had gained 5 lbs since my first fitting by overeating over the stress of finals, making the dress super duper snug.g and I didn't get to have my dress until the night before because the designer had to re-sew the skirt to fit me. I could breathe in the dress but sitting down and climbing steps was practically impossible. Since I had to climb a few dozen steps into the reception, I had to crash diet in order to  lose a few pounds the week of the wedding. I felt like I had no other choice, my wedding was six days away, there was no time for alterations and there was no way I could by a new dress. I would not recommend this to anyone! Looking in retrospect, it would have been much smarter to start eating healthier long beforehand and learn to manage my stress without recurring to emotional eating.

Did you have to lose weight before the wedding?

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Wedding Day is Upon Us

I'm so happy the culmination of a year of planning and a lifetime of hopes and dreams is finally here! In a couple of hours, we will officially announce to the world that we have chosen to spend the rest of our lives together. I get goosebumps just thinking about it!

To the Hive: Thank you for all the love throughout this crazy thing called planning a wedding and for allowing me to share this journey with you. I'm feel very fortunate to be a part of this incredibly supportive community. I can't wait to come back and tell you all about the wedding!

I have a couple of posts scheduled for the next few weeks so that you guys don't forget about me. We will be leaving for the airport straight from the reception for our 3 week honeymoon in Europe, for which I'm ridiculously excited for but I promise to come back .... with pictures!

To Mr. Boa: This is it! In a few hours we will take the first steps into our greatest adventure yet, the start of our lives as husband and wife. This is only the beginning. I'm looking forward to spending every single day until forever by your side, being grateful every day that life put you in my path :)

Let's DO this!

P.S. My excitement is evident in my obvious over-use of exclamation marks !!!!!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

A Memento from My Parent's Wedding

A long time ago, I asked Mami Boa if I could use her wedding glasses if they were still around. She answered in the affirmative, super excited that I will be including a memento for her wedding into my big day.   I finally saw the glasses this weekend and I'm totally in love. 

Straight out of the box where they have been stored for almost 25 years.
With a little TLC, some cleaning and a little shine on the silver part they will look as good as new. We had a little scare with one of them when the cup came apart form the stem, but it wasn't anything a little glue couldn't handle.

I'm so glad my parents kept these after all these years.Iit gives us the opportunity to honor their marriage and incorporate it into our wedding in a deeply personal way. As soon as I saw them my eyes got all misty eyed thinking that in a few days I will be toasting to our marriage with the same glasses my parents did years ago. I find something about that incredibly romantic and hopefully a little of their great marriage juju will rub off on us.

 Will you be incorporating a memento of your parent's wedding into your own?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Where Will Our Guests Sit?

This weekend I caught wedding crafting fever. With the help of my awesome MOH, I finished the table numbers and the seating chart in record time. 

I wanted to utilized our engagement pictures as ur table numbers but had no idea on how to edit them in.  Lil Boa worked some Photoshop magic to put the table numbers to each of the pictures and created JPEG images of the seating lists. We printed the table numbers, the I Spy and the seating lists as photos at Walgreens.
The table number workstation
I used a simple plastic frame to display the the number and the I Spy.
Final product
For the seating chart, I was originally inspired was this beauty.
Photo by Eliza Claire Photography via Rock My Wedding
We had no luck finding a frame that was big enough to hold all our seating lists but, a little brainstorming found us a great alternative. We will be taping the ribbon, floor to ceiling, to one of glass walls that sits right a top the stairs.of the venue  The seating lists were backed by leftover Violette cardstock from the invitations and hot glued to the ribbons. 

What DIY projects did you finish at the last minute?

Monday, May 21, 2012

Super Special Mail

A very important letter arrived in the mail today and just in time for the wedding too.


It seems the Obamas won't be able to make it to our wedding. Too bad it promises to be a great time.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Take Our Picture

Two weeks ago we met with our photographers Keli and Che, from Keli Art Photography, to finally take our engagement pictures. We had decided a long time ago that we would take our e-pics at our college campus at the University of Puerto Rico - Mayaguez, where we met and have spent huge part of our relationship at. We wanted to somehow include our alma mater into the wedding and choosing it as our e-pic site happened to be the perfect opportunity. It does't hurt that the college campus has beautiful historic buildings and gorgeous lawns. We even got the school to lend us our mascot, Tarzan the English Bulldog!

Without further ado, prepare yourselves for a Boa Picture Overload ...

I love love LOVE how our pictures turned out and I can't anything but wonderful things about our photographers. It was a pleasure to work with Keli and Che! They are super easy going and made us feel really comfortable. Regardless, Mr. Boa had a bit of a hard time since he can't shake the "stare stiffly at the camera with a big smile" mentality. He doesn't necessarily enjoy posing for pictures and stiffs up when a camera is near but he had a blast taking these pictures. For that last picture, Keli asked him to relax his face and he started giggling while exclaiming "What's that supposed to mean?" "I don't know how to do that". It was hilarious :)

We will be using 12 of these pictures for our table numbers. Which pictures would you choose?
Did you have fun taking your engagement pictures?

All pictures taken my the fabulous Keli Art Photography

MOH & MOB Dress Suprise

For 85% of the year I've been engaged, Mami Boa and Lil Boa have been looking for a dress. I had given them free range on picking whatever dress they wanted as long as the chose it in one of our wedding colors. A  few weeks ago they conference called me to say that they were tired of shopping for dresses and not finding anything they liked. They had decided to call Jose Braulio and ask him to custom design a pair of dresses for the two of them. 

Most probably I will not be able to see their dresses or the design until the day before the wedding and that's fine with me. I trust both these women's fashion sense and really want them to feel comfortable and beautiful on my wedding day. There was no need for cohesiveness between the dresses since I love the mismatched look,  so I felt comfortable letting Jose Braulio design whatever he thought would suit them best.

All I know of Lil Boa's dress is that it will be gray, knee length and with lace detailing on top.
Fabric for Lil Boa's Dress

Mami Boa gave the designer free reign with her dress and he chose to make a one shoulder, slightly-above- the-knee dress in all over purple lace.
Fabric for Mami Boa's dress

There will definitely be a lot of lace at my wedding!

How much input did you have in your bridal party/MOB dresses? Will you be able to see your bridesmaids dresses before the wedding?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Spanish I Spy Cards

Way back in 2010 when I discovered all the greatness that is Weddingbee, one of the first blog spots I had the opportunity to read was Mrs. Meerkat's shortest post ever which showed off her incredible I SPY cards. I knew in that moment I just had to have them at my wedding (a whole year and half before being engaged). I had never seen them before at any event and thought it would be a great way to get our guests to mingle and have a little bit of fun (and take great pictures I can steal off Facebook)

Right off the bat, I was confronted with a bit of a situation - all of the I Spy inspiration I found were in English, a language understood by less than 50% of my guests. I had to come up with a cute line or two to explain what an I Spy Card was (There was no pretty way to translate the I SPY poem so I came up with a variation) and translate a dozen or so "photo ops" to Spanish. 

Obviously the design part of these I SPY cards was another job for my super duper paper product slave/Lil Boa/MOH/. I sent her the translations along with the following inspiration pictures.

I Spy Cards :  wedding decor diy riviera maya stationery Dsc 00103 DSC_00103
Mrs. Meerkat's I SPY cards

I SPY game :  wedding game diy spy brown green Screen Shot 2011 01 14 At 2.47.43 AM

This is what she came up with:


Use your camera to capture these special moments
First person to complete the list will get a present

Newlyweds kissing
Group photo of everyone at your table
The Bride dancing with her dad
Oldest couple
The cake
MOH laughing
Newlyweds dancing
People doing the Macarena
MOB crying
Best dressed guest
Newlyweds surrounded by friends
Floral arrangements
Most generations in one picture
Groom with his mother

I still haven't figured out what the present will be or how to display these at the wedding.

 Do you have any suggestions? Has anyone else had a photo scavenger hunt at the wedding reception? How did it turn out?

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Sew My Dress

When I decided to go the custom design route with my wedding dress I knew it was taking a risk. I had worked with the designer Jose Braulio before and knew his creative process included doing the work a couple of weeks out from the event. This means I won't be able to see Isabel (my wedding dress) until a few days before the wedding.
                   My custom designed dress, Isabel -  inspired by Tara Keely#TK2210

Fortunately I'll get to see bits and pieces before, like at my first fitting this past weekend (just 2 weeks shy of the big day). He made a muslin mock up of the short dress to make sure of the measurements and it fit like a glove. I fell in love all over again with the dress design, confirming that a convertible dress was definitely the perfect decision for me.

I'm really anxious about not having my dress done yet so he "semi-jacked me up" by laying the lace over the bodice and wrapping the uncut lining fabric around my bottom tying it up with a random piece of blue cloth. It might be silly but I felt much better after seeing myself wearing something that resembles a wedding dress made out of my fabric, it helped me visualize what the final product would look like. I just have to squint my eyes and imagine that the lace is sewn in a sweetheart shape over the bust, that the blue sash is really white and that various layers of tulle cover the lining fabric.

Another great thing happened at the fitting, I realized that the bottom edge of the lace fabric would make an awesome headband. Jose Braulio happily cut off a piece for me to DIY into a headband. I will be sewing some ribbon to the ends and maybe adding a few crystals here and there to make a matching headband, finally checking off hair accessories from my to do list.

How did your first fitting go?

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Some Much Needed R&R

Lil Boa/ MOH gifted me with a weekend getaway at the swanky Wyndham Rio Mar Resort & Casino with just a couple of my closest girlfriends. Unfortunately, my friends cancelled in the weeks leading up to the event, leaving me and Lil Boa alone for the weekend. Somehow what began as my second bachelorette weekend ended up acting as my last family vacation as a single girl. Instead of leaving for the hotel by ourselves, we invited Mami and Papi Boa along for some well deserved rest and relaxation. 

View of the hotel pool from my favorite beach chair

We arrived at the hotel on Friday around 5 pm, and while everybody went to walk around the hotel and look around, I slipped into PJs, got my Kobo and went to bed at 7pm (It had been a particularly fierce school week). I woke up on Saturday morning feeling refreshed and looking forward to lounging out by the fabulous pool all day while wearing SPF 80 (I don't tan, I just get as red as a lobster, a look I do not want to have for the wedding).

My wonderful Lil Sister and MOH
Mid-afternoon on Saturday, Mami Boa told me about the second and third gifts I would recieve that weekend. My parents had gifted me with a Swedish massage and Mr. Boa had gifted me with a facial and foot massage  meaning I had to get over to the spa asap for my appointment. Let me say that I wish I had a live in masseur! Even though I had received massages before, this was a blissful experience since I've been so stressed out about school/wedding/honeymoon/moving/job. I would totally recommend budgeting for a massage right before the wedding, it made a world of a difference to me. I ended the weekend totally relaxed and with a renewed energy to tackle finals and the last bit of wedding planning. 

Lil Boa sneeaked into the spa to snap a picture of me

Even though I didn't have the girls weekend I was originally looking forward too, I'm grateful to have spent this time with my immediate family and in a way show my extreme gratitude to my parents for all they have done for the wedding (and me). We are really really close, with me being married and living so far away after the wedding, I know I'm really going to miss them. We have a great time when the four of us get together and I'm glad we get to share this weekend as memory of our last family vacation.

Will you be having some rest & relaxation before the wedding? What can you recommend to keep my stress level to a minimum?

Sign My Guestbook

Recently I've explored tons and tons of guestbook alternatives in posts by Miss Unicycle, Miss Woodpecker and Miss Castle. There are so many great options it was a little difficult narrowing down the choices. We have tons of framed pictures, picture collages, cartoons, paintings, all of the walls of my future home are covered, eliminating the option of having a framed guestbook alternative.

I'm an hobby scrapbooker and our shelves are full of scrapbooks I've made for anniversaries, birthdays and special trips. We sit down a couple of times of year to look through all of them but most of the time they are collecting dust on a shelf (but I love them anyway). That means an actual wedding guestBOOK was out of the running too. Then in Miss Castle's post I found the perfect alternative ... J E N G A!

Images by Jennifer Roper via Oh Lovely Day

The Boas are semi-obsessed with board games, we have a growing collection of games, most of them related to Monopoly, which we play every chance we get. We loved the idea of having our wedding guests sign a Jenga piece, so that every time we play the game we'll be able to read the messages left on our special day. Through an old post of Mrs. Bee (way back in 2006) I found instructions of how to make a Jenga guestbook of my own. Using those recommendations, I bought:
Jenga at Amazon
Pigma Micron Pen 005 Purple .20mm
3 Pigma Micron Penn 0.45 in Purple at Amazon

With so many choices, how did you choose what your guestbook would be?

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Play My Music

When we decided to have a morning wedding, thoughts of a drunken all night bash where guests boogie till 4 am went immediately out the window. No alcohol and broad daylight only hours after waking up does not conduce to a party-like atmosphere. That worked out perfectly for us since we envisioned our wedding day our as a time to join our families in sharing and celebration but not in song and dance. Some brides might be looking to give their guests the party of the decade but a more laid back vibe suits us perfectly. 

After debating whether to have music at the reception, we ultimately decided it would be nice to have some background music during breakfast and maybe some dance music after without having to worry about someone manning the Ipod. We met with our DJ this week and he asked for a list of Must-have songs for the reception.  Mr. Boa and I came up with this:

Special Songs

First Dance: The much debated first dance song was chosen a while ago and we both still absolutely love it. 

Father Daughter Dance: Papi Boa took the reigns on choosing this song but I had my fingers crossed that he would chose "Y Como Es El"by Jose Luis Perales, who is one of his favorite artists. I remember the first time I heard the song, riding in the car with Papi Boa when I was around eight or nine and have associated the song with him ever since. 

Entrance: The entrance song was a no-brainer. "Marry You" has a special part in my heart ever since Mr. Boa used during our proposal and all of our friends now associate it with us. 

Cake Cutting: We identified with the beautiful lyrics of "Lucky" and felt the song should be included somewhere special.

Garter Toss: DJ will chose

Bouquet: Since I'm one of the first of my friends to marry, I'm sure I'll have lots of single ladies for the bouquet toss. We gladly chose the cheesy "Single Ladies"  because I find it to be such a fun song. 

Last Song: We will be having a private last dance while one of our photographers leads all of our guest downstairs for a big group photo. "Amazed" was the first(and only) song Mr. Boa has dedicated to me in our 5 years of dating. He was adamant of having it played at the wedding and last song was the perfect place.

During Breakfast
We left the song choices up to the DJ but suggested a few artists for the jazz/big band feel we wanted during breakfast. 

Dance Music
When it came to choosing music to play during the "dance"portion of our reception, I looked at past bees lists of Do Not Play Songs (Mrs. Cupcake, Mrs.Dew Drop, Mrs. Sloth). The Boa families are incredible cheese-tastic and while they aren't big on dancing some of these familiar old school wedding tunes will most certainly make them get up and get a groove on. My fifteen year old cousins told be that if I don't do the Chicken Dance or the Macarena, I won't be really married so we will definitely be having those. Most brides don't like these songs because it makes their wedding guests get up and dance like drunken fools. In my case ANY type of dancing would be great! 

Are you a cheesy bride like me? What songs are on your Do-Not-Play list?