Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Turn your home into a sanctuary

Every woman deserves a personal sanctuary in her home-- a place to read, listen to music, meditate or just be by herself with her thoughts. Here's how to create one of your own:
  1. Select a spot. Find a quiet area where the light appeals to you. If you have a whole room to use, great; even if you don't, you can use a small area such as a window seat or a corner in your office.
  2. Take away all unnecessary objects. Creating a sanctuary is all about carving out a space where you don't have to accomplish anything. Only keep those items that help you unwind.
  3. Take a deep, sweet breath. Including a few sensory features can promote an ambiance that's different from the rest of your home. You can treat yourself to fragrant flowers, candles or aromatherapy oils. Additionally, think about installing a great piece of art or interesting photos, some CDs that take you away and a velvet pillow that's a pleasure to touch. Give yourself the luxury of tuning into your senses daily-- even if it's just for 10 minutes.

Source; Photo Credit: amenews.net

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Tips for planning your honeymoon

Budgeting & Brainstorming. Don't get in debt trying to finance your honeymoon. Determine how much money you have (or what you can save), and use that as your guideline. After you do that, you can begin talking about where to go. Try to predict what you and your spouse's state of mind will be after the wedding. Yes, all couples are thrilled, but some feel physically and emotionally exhausted after experiencing this life-changing event. Keep in mind that you'll want to make time to enjoy each other on your honeymoon.

Research. One Saturday, visit the bookstore, peruse travel books and magazines, and jot down names of places that seem interesting. Also, Surf the web, and get tons of info on places to stay and things to do. Several countries and states have official websites, and many times you can request maps and brochures. However, you shouldn't anticipate deciding where you'll go overnight; take a few weeks, and have fun thinking about it.
When you've narrowed your search, begin checking prices and determining transportation availability and accommodations for each trip. To do this, you can continue your search online, begin making calls, or utilize a travel agent. The good thing about a travel agent is that he or she can deal with the details of the trip: booking flights, lodging and any needed ground transportation.

Confirming your plans. When you're ready to reserve plane tickets, hotel rooms, a car and other necessities, think about making reservations for activities like going to a theater or museum or even scuba diving. If you plan to stay in a hotel or resort, contact the location a couple of months before you get there and ask if there is a concierge.

For more tips, check out our source, Planning Your Honeymoon.

Photo Credit: Honeymoonallinclusive.com

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Beauty rules all brides should follow

Here are some beauty commandments from TheKnot.com to be sure you look "ridiculously good" on your big day:
  1. I will not over-accessorize. Select one memorable piece (like a birdcage veil or heirloom earrings) instead of piling it on. Work simple accessories around it for a balanced look. And remember, your veil, bouquet and the embellishment of your gown are accessories as well.
  2. I will play up my best features. You are aware of your best feature, so maximize it! If you have glowing skin, accentuate it with light-reflecting lotion. Open up your beautiful eyes with a few, loose false lashes. Another tip from The Knot: Even if you never wear makeup in real life, think of your wedding day as an exception. A little of bit of mascara, blush and gloss goes a long way in making your features pop in your photos.
  3. I will wear metals that match. The accessories you decide to wear should depend on your wedding dress hue. So if you're wearing a bright white gown, don't wear gold (which could clash); wear platinum and/or pearl. For a diamond (slightly off-white) gown, gold and silver works best. And if you're wearing an ivory wedding dress, try gold and warmer metals. One exception: Don't get rid of your engagment ring if it doesn't match.
  4. I won't slouch at the ceremony altar. All eyes will be on you at the wedding ceremony so be sure to pull your shoulders back and stand up straight. You want to make sure you look beautiful and confident, not uncomfortable.
  5. I will not crash diet. Yes, you may shed a couple of pounds in the weeks before the wedding because of all you have to do and jitters, but think of that as a bonus. Don't try to lose any more than that at the last minute. Crash dieting will wear you out; no number on the scale is worth not being able to handle wedding day demands and enjoying the excitement.
For five more tips, check out our source.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Tips for planning your wedding on a budget

Want to plan a fabulous wedding but don't want to break the bank? Check out the following tips for ways to plan your wedding on a budget:

  • Get married in off-season months: January, February, March and November.
  • Get married on any day but Saturday.
  • If you can't afford a designer gown, think about renting one instead.
  • Most big bridal shops have big sales each year. Be sure to take advantage of this.
  • Using silk flowers can save you lots of cash, and best of all, they're already preserved. The bride can use fresh flowers, but no one else really needs to.
  • You can use silk flowers to decorate the ceremony and reception venues as well.
  • Check out dollar stores when shopping for candles and candleholders. Additionally, dollar stores and places like Wal-Mart have many items you can use to decorate.
  • Try to choose one person who can do both hair and makeup.
  • Hire a caterer that provides everything you'll need such as glassware, plates, tablecloths, etc.
  • Try to find a venue that will let you bring your own alcohol.
  • Wedding coordinators can save you money; they are aware of additional ways to save money, they know what to say and ask your vendors, and they have connections in the industry.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

5 Ways to Boost Your Confidence

We can all use a boost of confidence from time to time. Here are five ways to increase yours:

  1. Smile. "There's lots of research that suggests if you smile, even in a fake way, it will indirectly lift your mood," and that makes you feel safe and relaxed, says Nancy Etcoff, clinical instructor of psychology at Harvard Medical School and author of "Survival of the Prettiest: The Science of Beauty." If you don't believe it, try holding a pencil horizontally between your teeth to imitate the effect.
  2. Disregard stereotypes. Women are likely to get worse at things when they're aware a task is "typically male." For example, women did well on math problems in a Dartmouth College study- until they were reminded of the belief that men are better with numbers. Forget that type of thinking before beginning a new project.
  3. Learn something new. Maybe you want to learn a different language or how to make a cake from scratch. "The better you become, the more confident you'll be in general- not just when you're doing that thing," Etcoff says.
  4. Meditate. In a study at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, people who meditated at least five days a week improved their self-acceptance. What did they do? They sat quietly, paid attention to their breathing and thought compassionately about themselves or someone else.
  5. Move away from the mirror. When women spend more time on their looks than other things, they're less happy, according to a study at the University of California, Berkeley. That's not to say you shouldn't care about your looks; however, going overboard can distract you from other aspects of life.

Check out 17 more tips from our source, 22 Confidence Boosters.

Photo Credit: minisites.contentthatworks.com

Thursday, August 12, 2010

DIY Wedding Favors

Want to do some of the wedding crafts for your big day? Consider making your own wedding favors! Not only are they a great way to show your guests how much you appreciate them, they are easy and inexpensive to make.

Your wedding favors can be a momento your guests take home, one your guests can eat before the wedding dinner or something that will help them join in on the celebration like noisemakers.
Some ideas for DIY wedding favors include:
  • Candy buffet
  • Cookie buffet
  • Homemade soap
  • Personalized matchboxes
  • Homemade activity books (for the kids)
  • Scented bath scrub
  • Personalized CD
For more tips and ideas, visit our source.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

4 diet "I don'ts"

Before their big day, many brides want to shed a couple of pounds or lose a few inches, and some will do it by any means necessary. However, that's not such a good idea. Here are four things you should not do when it comes to losing weight for your wedding (or any other time for that matter):

  1. Don't skip meals. Skipping one meal frequently leads to overeating at the next one. Instead, eat four to five times per day: maybe three meals and two snacks. Try to include foods that are rich in protein and fiber (such as an apple or a handful of nuts) every time you eat to keep your hunger under control.
  2. Don't dramatically cut calories. If you don't get enough calories, you could lose energy, and you don't need that to happen. Trim calories by taking fewer bites at meals, eating a whole-wheat English muffin instead of a bagel or using only one slice of cheese on a sandwich instead of two.
  3. Don't over exercise. You can really burn out if you overdo it at the gym. Instead, pump up your regular work out routine a few months before your big day.
  4. Don't avoid carbs. Your body needs them for energy so be sure to include them in sensible portions daily. Select whole grains like oats and whole wheat bread. Additionally, be sure to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables.

From Bridal Guide Magazine, written by Susan Schneider

Photo from: madbrewlabs.com

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The importance of Chelsea's wedding

I came across this post on ChocolateBrides.com talking about why Chelsea's wedding is important (she also mentions other celebs who got married this weekend).

I decided to share it with you all because I think the post has an interesting perspective. Check it out: Why Chelsea's Wedding is Important.

Photo Credit: anorak.co.uk

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

3 things to consider when choosing a wedding venue

Deciding on a wedding venue yourself can be a little difficult. But here are three things you should consider before choosing the one:

1. How many guests do you want, and how mobile are they?
Do you want a small or huge wedding? The answer might determine your location; yes, the day is about you, but it's about your guests, too. For instance, if you have several older relatives, can they make it to your beach wedding safely? Keep in mind that you can't please everyone, but you should think about making one or two compromises if it means the ones you love will be there.

2. Do you desire to have a religious ceremony?
In 2007, 53 percent of couples wed in a church. Some things to think about include:
  • If you're having a traditional religious ceremony, you might have to have it in a place of worship; make sure you ask up front. If you do, reserve the date at your place of worship before booking your reception location. Additionally, some religious institutions disapprove of intricate decorations or flowers and skin-baring dresses. Be sure to get info about these details.
  • If you and your groom-to-be have different religious beliefs, think about having the ceremony at a neutral place such as a reception hall. Speak with both of your families early on about your choice.
  • If organized religion isn't a factor in your lives but you want to include spiritual aspects, consider having the ceremony in a natural setting like at a beach or park (make sure to ask about any permits).
3. How much work will you or do you want to undertake?
Depending on the settings, you might have to do some heavy lifting. Before committing to this, consider the pros and cons of these locations:
  • Unique location:If you're trying to have your big day in a 'picturesque barn,' for instance, you have to think about who's going to clear out the hay, bring in tables, move the cows to the pasture, etc. You also have to think about Mother Nature. If you plan to have an outdoor ceremony or reception, you need a backup plan for inclement weather which make twice as much work.
  • Reception hall: The location generally has a 'one-size-fits-all feel,' but the staff is more than likely prepared to handle the dirty work for you- this may include post-party cleanup.

For more tips on finding the perfect venue, check out our source.

Photo from: weddingchaos.co.uk