Beach Wedding Tips

The sun on your face and the sand in your toes are wonderful additions to any wedding day.  Part of what makes a beach wedding so fantastic is that your guests get to go on a mini-vacation with you, whether it is a destination wedding or a local beauty.  There are many aspects that require attention; public vs private beach, bare-feet vs sandals vs heels if you are adventurous, and how you are going to keep your guests from melting in the sun.  If you are looking to have a beach wedding, I hope these tips help with the planning of your special day!

1. Time it Right

If you are planning a beach wedding please have the ceremony take place during the day.  The view is the reason you picked this gorgeous backdrop, right?!?!?  Avoid busy times; take into account the time of year, especially if you are planning to get married on a public beach.  Also, try and avoid the heat by planning an mid afternoon to early evening ceremony.  Track weather and prepare for the instability of an outdoor event; wind, rain, tide and heat.  Always have a backup plan!  When combating the sun, some options to offer guests for protection are sunscreen, handheld fans, decorative umbrellas, or a covering so your guests can focus on your wedding and get a break from the heat.

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2. Beat the Heat

Take the heat into account when planning your wedding decor.  From your food to flowers, it is important to utilize heat resistant items.  Flowers like plumeria, orchids, and succulents are beautiful and will withstand the heat. Also consider using local floral; this will add to the authenticity of your wedding decor and is a great way to highlight local sources. Be sure to avoid hydrangea and roses, both will wilt in the heat and require a lot of water to maintain their beauty.  Using heat resistant candles, such as outdoor or flameless candles, is a great way to transition from ceremony to reception.  For dessert, try fondant in place of cream for your icing; it is less likely to melt.

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3. Be Heard

Crashing waves and that salty breeze are a big part of why the beach is so magical. However, the waves and wind make it hard for other sounds to travel.  Use a microphone for the ceremony so that guests can enjoy your ceremony, and have a sound system set up so your ceremony music can be heard.  If you plan on having live music, mic them as well.  Be sure to use a wind screen on your mic to spare your guests the sound of wind overpowering your vows. You can easily find a wind screen online for under $10, typically made of foam. Just place it over the mic to ensure your ceremony is heard by all.

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Feet in the sand

4. Dress the Part

Beach weddings tend to be more relaxed, especially with the sand, bare-feet and sunshine.  It is important to dress appropriately and comfortably so that you both can enjoy your day.  Silhouettes like an airy sheath cut work well with a beach setting, especially in fabrics like cotton, linen, and crepe.  Dresses in a blush or pale blue will pop against the beach background and work well for a wedding gown or bridesmaids dresses.  Be wary of elaborate veil styles; you don’t want it to end up wrapped around your face courtesy of a lovely gust of the ocean breeze.  If you have your heart set on a veil, save it for dramatic wedding shots with it blowing in the wind.  It will be easier to control in that setting as opposed to when you are walking down the aisle.

There are many factors to consider for a beach wedding including weather, clothing, and flower and food spoilage.  Seasoned vendors are sure to help you ensure that your day runs smoothly and beautifully.  No matter what, enjoy your day alongside the crashing waves; it’s your wedding day!

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Weeknight Spaghetti Squash

Thanksgiving and Christmas have come and gone, and I am still struggling to wake up from my food coma. After inhaling all of the holiday southern food I am looking far something different for my tastebuds.

I love Italian food!  It’s a fantastic comfort food, that is great for a mid-week dinner.  As a gluten intolerant individual it is not always easy to fulfill my craving.  Thankfully there is spaghetti squash to help create gluten-free friendly Italian dishes.  One of my favorite ways to prepare this miracle squash is with pesto and veggies

1 Spaghetti Squash

1 7oz container of pesto

1 container heirloom cherry tomatoes

2 yellow squash

3 garlic cloves or 2 tsp of minced garlic

Olive Oil

Salt and pepper (to taste)

Garlic Powder (a pinch)

Preheat oven to 400°.  Cut the spaghetti squash in half, make sure that cut away from yourself (safety first!).  Drizzle olive oil on each half, about a tablespoon per half, lightly sprinkle salt and garlic powder on squash.  Place on pan and roast at 400° for 45 minutes, or until tender (to check poke with a fork).

While the spaghetti squash is cooking, halve the tomatoes and dice the yellow squash.  Sauté the tomatoes and yellow squash, for about 7 minutes so veggies are al dente, with olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.  Place pan to the side until spaghetti squash is done.

Allow the spaghetti squash to cool somewhat and get ready to shred!  It is easier to use a kitchen towel to help grip the roasted squash while holing the squash at an angle and shredding it with a fork into a large sauté pan.  Sauté the shredded spaghetti squash with a teaspoon of olive oil and the minced garlic for a minute, and then add pesto.  Cook until all flavors are incorporated, which should only take about 5 minutes, then mix in sautéed veggies.  Top with parmesan and enjoy!

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Holiday Togetherness

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year!”  Holiday season is here!  Christmas decorations are everywhere the Thanksgiving fixings have been picked over and the busiest traveling, shopping and eating season is upon us.  Sometimes with all the lights and presents we lose sight of what this time really means.  One of the challenges of this season is combining holiday traditions. Whether its friends, family or colleagues every group has its own way of celebrating and staying connected.  I have learned that by speaking up, compromising, and making a genuine effort to trying something new you can have a fulfilling and stress free season.

When I began dating, my now husband, I immediately was introduced to the world of sports and the outdoors.  At first I was extremely self-conscious of how I sounded when I tried to talk sports, or how out of shape I was. Being exposed to their family traditions allowed me to awaken a side of me that I had not to fully develop.  During our last visit to Colorado I opened myself to each experience, letting go of any self doubt.  I was able to knowledgeably support my husband’s alma mater, rush the field, and shoot a gun and loved every second of it.  When those opportunities for a new experience pop up grab onto them!

 

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For me the holidays are made extra special by scents and food.  Just catching a whiff of fresh pine, warm spiced sider, or fresh pumpkin pie transports me to childhood memories. So when I found out my husband is anti-tree murder, I was crushed.  While the adult in me understood that cutting down trees simply to decorate and then throw away is incredibly wasteful and bad for the environment, the child in me wanted to throw a tantrum and scream “you cant have christmas without a real tree!”.  Thankfully the adults in us have found a solution!  Fill the house will soy spruce and pine scented candles and have a fake tree.  We both were able to speak up and say what makes the holidays special to us without ignoring the other’s viewpoint.

It is really easy to get caught up in self imposed or assumed societal standard during the holiday season.  When it comes down to it the real purpose of the holidays is to enjoy each other to the best of everyone’s ability.   The best part of combining traditions is creating new ones, and celebrating the life that you have created with the people you have chosen to spend your life with.  As a new sports enthusiast and food obsessed individual I love when we can create ways to honor both of our backgrounds and traditions. Remember that the holiday season is about being together, and however you chose to celebrate it.

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