Get Hitched without Breaking the Bank

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When thinking of weddings, we immediately think of the damages. It will cost us the venue, guest list, gowns and suits, invites, food among other things. Then, there’s the theme to think about. A whimsical wedding at Blue Gardens, Quezon … Continue reading

Here’s a Mini Checklist Before You Walk the Aisle

This is a simple checklist to keep your head in the game. Preparing ahead of time is key to pulling off anything. Don’t sweat the small stuff and make sure no details are missed on during the big day. Continue reading

Four Reasons to Hire A Wedding Planner

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“Weddings are not about spending the least amount of money or the most amount of money; they are about spending good money on the elements that are most important to you and your partner.” -Kristi Richardson

 

Planning a wedding is no easy feat. There are a lot of aspects and elements to consider that a bride would feel by the overall logistics that are involved in simply pulling off a grand event. After all, this would be one of the momentous and biggest events in a woman’s life; it is only right that she be extra meticulous when it comes to hashing out and planning the details. For this reason, many brides would elect to avail of the services of a wedding planner, and you might not just know it, but it could potentially be your best investment when it comes to your wedding day. Without a doubt, careful planning and execution are two essential aspects that can make or break a wedding—an expertise of many wedding planners. So, if you wish to have a wedding to remember for years to come, you might want to hire a wedding planner.

Other than ensuring that everything goes seamlessly on your wedding day and assisting you with the planning, there is a myriad of reasons why hiring a wedding planner would be advantageous. Here are four reasons why:

1.) You deserve everything to be perfect on your wedding day

Most brides have envisioned what their ideal wedding would be like at a very young age. In their mind, they have already mapped out how their big day would look and feel like. Unfortunately, translating your perfect wedding is not as simple as you wish it to be—especially if you are undertaking the planning alone. This is where your wedding planner would be helpful. Planning a wedding takes a lot of hard work and time to put together perfectly. Your wedding planner has the necessary expertise and experience to pull it off as they have organized the same event over and over that it has become somewhat of their specialty. As a consequence, with their constant practice comes perfection.

2.) It helps you stick to a budget

One of the most integral aspects of planning a wedding is your budget. A wedding no matter how big or small will inevitably cost you and if you bungle your budget and receive the bills, you might find out you just spent more than you initially bargained for. A wedding planner doubles as a financial adviser by realistically telling you what you can do with the budget you have. More often than not, they offer you affordable alternatives or would ask you to compromise to ensure that each aspect of your wedding is top notch.

3.) Wedding planning should be enjoyable, not stressful

Regardless of how much planning goes into pulling off a wedding, it should be an enjoyable process. Furthermore, while you are planning a wedding, you should never neglect to spend special time with your special man and groom-to-be. After all, days leading up to your wedding should be filled with bliss and anticipation, not anxiety and stress. Hiring an excellent wedding planner will help you with that, and they have all the necessary skills to deal with everything on your behalf.

4.) You have a day job

Having a 9-5 job and hashing out the nitty gritty details of what you want to happen in your wedding just would not mix. Planning a wedding takes a lot of commitment and effort, and if you have a day job, it might not be as easy as it would be had you just hired a wedding planner. Your wedding planner would function as your personal assistant whose job is to look for potential vendors for you and basically do all the running around for your wedding.

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Birthday Bash: Children’s Birthday Party Checklist

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“To be in your children’s memories tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today.” -Barbara Johnson

 

Throwing your child a birthday bash is the perfect way to show him or her that they are being celebrated. After all, children themselves are gifts in our lives and one way to show them that is to commemorate their birthdays appropriately. However, while throwing a birthday party for a child may seem straightforward and easy enough, there are a lot of things you have to consider. After all, if you want your event to be a success, you need to plan accordingly. From selecting the best theme of your child’s birthday party to doing a headcount of your prospective guests, here is a checklist of the things you need to do if you intend to throw a birthday bash for your little tots:

1-3 MONTHS BEFORE

1.) Discuss with your child what kind of party he or she wants

Does your child want a ranch party theme? Then you better look up some fun ranch party packages beforehand. Is he or she more interested in having the party at home? Then try to see in which part of the house you can hold the party in. Regardless of what it would be, discuss with your child about the party, they want to have. You may dream up a lot of plans, but this is their party after all. Let them decide what they want, and you can plan from there.

2.) Come up with a guest list

Prior to coming up with a guest list, ask your child who they would like to invite to their party. From there, do a headcount so that you can appropriately plan how much food you are going to be serving your guests. Are you planning to invite his entire class? Or just a few select friends? Deciding on a headcount is crucial as not only will this give you an idea of how much food would be needed, but would also help you in selecting an appropriate party activity for the kids.

4 WEEKS BEFORE

1.) RSVP Important Guests

By now, you should already have an idea as to which guests your child is going to look forward to seeing during his or her big day. Call them up four weeks prior to the birthday party and ask whether they could make it or not. Your child is not likely to appreciate it if he finds out that his or her best friend would not be there the day of his or her party.

2.) Send invitations

Design written invitations and make sure they align with the party’s theme. Send them out to your guests and indicate whether parents are invited as well, and ask them to RSVP.

3.) Make a schedule of activities for the party

Children have short attention spans. Considering this, you have to find a way to ensure that 2-3 hours of the party would be filled with energetic activities or fun entertainment—something to keep a room full of kids occupied. In addition to that, you should think of games that are appropriate for the age of your child and his guests.

4.) Plan the menu

Know what you want to serve to your child’s party guests. Make sure to incorporate some of your child’s favorite foods as well. Remember to keep it simple and something that would not cause too much of a mess. Pizza, chicken, sliders—these are things that kids love and are easy to prepare.

ON THE DAY

1.) Clean the place

Spruce up the house—especially the areas where the party will be held. Display the food a couple of hours before the guests are set out to arrive. Cover them to make sure no outside elements contaminate them and to ensure freshness.

2.) Give parents who are staying some tasks

An extra helping hand would always be appreciated. If some of the parents are staying over for the party, give them a set of tasks to help you out.

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What to Ask Your Wedding Planner

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“A good wedding planner will invariably save the bride money. Everything is negotiable in this business.” -Richard Markel

Planning a wedding can be one of the most exciting things you can do in your life. Unfortunately, if you are the bride, it can potentially be one of the most stressful as well. To alleviate your stress levels and help you have a better execution of plans during your wedding day, it is highly recommended that you employ the services of a wedding planner. These planners are already well-experienced in your field and have the necessary expertise to deliver as you expect them to. More often than not, the success or failure of your wedding event hinges on how well your wedding planner can execute your plans and put them into action. With this in mind, it is pivotal that you have a constant correspondence with them and maintain this professional relationship until your wedding day.

To ensure that your wedding planner can properly deliver, here are some things you should ask and discuss with them:

1.) How do you keep in touch with clients?

Wedding planning inevitably entails making a lot of decisions, and there are some of these you might want to gloss over with your wedding planner. As a result, you can expect to be in regular communication with them. Seeing as regular correspondence is paramount to the fruition of your wedding plans, it is essential that you ask prospective candidates as to how they will be communicating with you months, weeks and days leading up to the meeting. Make sure that the method they prefer is one that sits well with you. Would you like to do it over the phone? Or would you like to have regular sit-down meetings with them?

2.) What services do you offer?

In order to have an objective comparison among your prospective candidates, it is best if you ask what services their wedding planning entails. Sometimes, the venue you choose already comes with a coordinator but they would not probably meet your expectations or would provide an extensive list of services. Select someone who can cover the rest of the details of your wedding planning and someone who can meet all of your planning needs and expectations.

3.) What type of experience do you have?

Seeing as your wedding day will be one of the most momentous events you will ever have in your life, it would be best if you select someone who has had a lot of previous experiences. Know when the planner was in business and for how long and find out whether he or she is doing this freelance or is employed by a large company. Additionally, it would not hurt to have them describe some of the best weddings they have previously planned and coordinated—especially if the wedding is similar to yours in terms of size, budget, location or theme.

4.) Who are your preferred vendors?

You are going to need a lot of vendors for your wedding if you want it to resemble anything like you have dreamed it to be. From the florist to the caterer, your wedding planner might already have a list of potential vendors you can hire. More often than not, these are vendors she or he has already worked with before and can be trusted to pull everything off during your wedding day. However, do not just stop there, leaf through their portfolios and compare before you select the vendors you do want to service your wedding.

5.) Can you help us stay on budget?

Your budget is paramount to your wedding plans, so it is only right that you ask your planner whether or not they can help you stick to yours. A good planner would be able to secure enough vendor discounts to offset his or her services. Have a talk with your planners about your budget and see what you both can work with. Furthermore, steer clear from planners who are not entirely committed to your budget.

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Four Things You Can Consider to Have a Budget Friendly Debut

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“Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen.” -Albert Einstein

 

Turning eighteen is one of the most important milestones a girl experiences in her life. For some, it can be considered as the pivotal event that signifies the transition of a girl from a simple maiden into a woman. As a result, many girls would see their eighteenth birthday soiree or debut as a grand event they want to execute flawlessly. With this in mind, they could spend weeks to months meticulously planning every detail to make sure that everything goes perfectly. However, more often than not, budget constraints would set them back from having that dream debut they have always wanted. This should not be a cause for concern however as there are innumerable ways to make sure that you can still have an elegant debut sans the exorbitant expense—the key is to think out of the box and stay within your budget.

From selecting a budget friendly debut package to doing some things on your own, here are a few ways you can stay on budget while still having the debut of your dreams:

 

1.) Opt for an outdoor venue instead of an air-conditioned one

More often than not, an outdoor venue would cost you much cheaper to rent for the night than an air-conditioned one. This is because an air-conditioned venue would require you to pay for the electricity needed to power the air-conditioning systems as opposed to having the natural breeze of an outdoor venue which you can rent at a lower rate. You can save a lot if you book a venue that is mostly outdoor and just has an open tent or pavilion for the tables. Furthermore, this will give your party an enchanting touch of having the natural drapery of the night skies.

2.) DIY menu

You can break the mold by opting to have a tea party or midday brunch theme for your debut instead of the traditional dinner time party. Considering that the time of your party does not necessitate a full meal for your guests, you can easily style your menu to fit the time of the day—one which you can easily do yourself. All that is left for you to do is to find caterers who would accommodate such a request. Alternatively, if you have a lot of spare time on your hands and have a slew of people to help you out, then, by all means, cook for your party. In doing so, not only are you treating your guests to a homemade meal, but you are saving a lot as well.

3.) Make your own décor

Party décor by itself is not too pricey. But for major parties that would need a lot of decorations, the expense can easily accumulate to a hefty sum. To cut some costs, you can always opt to make your own décor. If you have a particularly artistic eye and skill, you can easily execute this—especially since you already know what you want to see in your party. Additionally, there is nothing more satisfying than seeing your vision come to life which is one of the reasons why you should consider this alternative as well. If you are having trouble with décor ideas, you can easily find inspiration online in websites such as Pinterest or several groups in social media that specialize in debut events.

4.) Get creative with the invites

Another way to minimize costs is to get creative with the invites. Besides, if you needlessly spend for party invitations, it would only go to waste seeing as guests are more likely to just glance at them and forget about them by the time your party is over. Instead, get creative and play around with your invites. If you want to go green, you can digitally make your invitations by creating a video and tagging all of your guests in it. Alternatively, if you want to take the traditional route, consider what your theme is and incorporate that into your invitations.

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Caterers 101: Four Things Your Caterer Wishes You Knew

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“Food is symbolic of love when words are inadequate” –Alan D. Wolfelt

We might think their jobs are easy enough and straightforward, but the truth is, a caterer’s job is quite complex. Whether they may be providing the canapes for your daughter’s eighteenth soiree or providing all the courses to your elegant wedding, catering for an event is not as simple as creating a menu and cooking whatever is selected for the menu. The truth is being in your caterer’s shoes can be quite an overwhelming and daunting experience. In fact, there is a myriad of things your caterer would want you to know, so that the next time you are thinking of hiring one, you would have a better understanding of what goes on behind the kitchen doors.

Additionally, it would not hurt to know a few of some insider caterer’s secrets that might be helpful in aiding you make better decisions for the catering of the party you would be hosting next. So, before you start scouring for potential catering services in Bacoor, Cavite or elsewhere, here are some of the things you might want to know:

1.) Guests will drink more than usual

Guests tend to indulge themselves more at parties by drinking in excess and far more than used to. More often than not, this is because celebratory libations are free and of course, parties have an aura of euphoria to it which would prompt guests to drink. As this is the case, estimating the amount of alcohol needed for a particular event can present a challenge, but it is not impossible. Keep in mind that as your guests tend to imbibe more drinks than usual, so if you want them to indulge their drinking desires, buy more than necessary, or you can alternatively avail of cheaper packages.

2.) There is no need to create a menu around special diets

Some of your guests might be vegan, and there might be a few who might be allergic to gluten, this does not mean however that you have to bend over your back and design an entire menu to suit those preferences. Your caterer can always provide a dish or two for the guests who have particular or strict diets. Remember, you are feeding every single one of your guests—not only a fraction of them with specific diets.

3.) The kitchen at your site matters

One of the major snags a caterer would hit when it comes to catering for an event is a small kitchen—or worse the lack of one. Even if the food for your party is prepared off-site, a kitchen would still be ideal in order to reheat the food or keep it warm. In any case, having your caterers operate in a site sans a kitchen would result in creamy food being congealed and food losing its crisp. While this is not the case all the time (as you can always plan your menu with food that does not necessarily need to be kept warm), having a kitchen on the site would still be a good contingency plan.

4.) Pinterest is not always realistic

Some brides-to-be would come up to their caterers and ask them to imitate a particular food or cake they found off Pinterest and expect their caterers to mimic every detail. While Pinterest is a good website to inspire ideas for an event, not everything on the website is necessarily realistic. Apart from relying on the skills of your caterer, you also have your own budget to keep in mind. More often than not, the praise-worthy posts you have seen on Pinterest were probably created by food stylists who have employed innumerable inedible things (from shaving cream to glue) just to make food look the way it was advertised.

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