Monday, March 31, 2008

Swingers Needed!

On April 12 6:30pm-11pm. Join in on Swing Dance Fundraiser
. Larry Brown's Swinglane 18 piece orchestra featuring vocalists Carroll Venable & Jimmy Winters. All proceeds will benefit individuals with developmental disabilities supported by the James L. Maher Center.

What a fun way to practice your first dance!

Officer's Club
Newport Naval Station, Newport, RI 02840

One More For the Irish, The Shamrock Ball

April 19 2008 8pm-Midnight. A black tie affair (or kilted) with Traditional Irish music by Boarding House Reach, live dance music by Roger Ceresi and The All Starz, performances by Irish step dancers & the AOH Pipes & Drums. Passed hors d'oeuvres, stations of Irish fare & delightful desserts will be served. Proceeds benefit AOH Scholarship fund. Limited space. Ticket available in advance only thru website.

Belcourt Castle
April 19th 2008
Address: 657 Bellevue Avenue, Newport, RI 02840
Phone: 401-864-3881

Dear Nancy, What's the secret to planning a perfect wedding in Newport??

The secret to a great event is about your guests over all experience!
Yes, the wedding is about you...But by looking after if you guests experience and comfort you will look like a rock star.
In the corporate arena we call it experiential marketing,
First off, look at the age range of you guests.
How man children,contemporaries, parents age guests, and seniors will be attending your wedding?
This will reflect on the king of food, activity's and music you should be arranging for the wedding.
By thinking about your guests,it will be a not just a great wedding, but a extraordinary experience that will be remembered for a life time.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Are Destination Catholic Brides not Welcome in Newport RI ?

My next catholic bride just canceled her wedding in Newport because she was told to: “Go get married in your own hometown”.

They now live and work in NYC and don’t live in their hometown any more. The family resides all over the US, so Newport was the perfect destination location for them.
40 % of all weddings are now planed as a destination,
so this is great news for Newport.

But what’s a nice Catholic Girl to do???

I’m told that some of the Middletown and Bristol churches might be able to accommodate you.
One could get married by a Judge in Newport and have a church blessing when you get home.

With many of the Parishes having only one priest,
Here is a suggestion for the “Member Only” Churches in town.
Create a “Tag on Wedding” at the end of a scheduled mass for the visiting brides. Between a church fee and an additional 100 to 200 visitors per service, it could be a great help to the annual budget.

We are a tourist town after all!

Get Invited to a Green Wedding

When looking for that perfect invite Look for: recycled, handmade, or plantable papers processed chlorine-free and printed with vegetable- or soy-based inkstree-free paper made out of hemp, banana stalks, bamboo, kenaf, or organic cotton.

Use a high percentage of post-consumer recycled content papers that aren't metallic or plastic-coated, characteristics that are hard to recycle.

Reduce the amont of paper useed by
Sending a postcard for your save-the-date
Create online invitations
Do a wedding blog to let people know about the bachelor/ette parties, rehearsal dinner, and gift registry

When it comes to printing
Less is definitely more for the Enviorment!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

A Shortbread Wedding Cake??

When bride to be Rebecca Stuard said to me “I just don’t like cake”.
So I designed and built her a “cake” made of short bread cookies.
The bride was elated!
It made the perfect Cetlic Iconic moment!

Irish Wedding Traditions

by Bridget Haggerty
There is one wedding Irish tradition that states: 'Marry in May and Rue The Day' while another states: 'Marry in April if you can, joy for maiden and for man'. When I told my daughter about this Irish superstition, she changed her wedding date so that she'd be married in April!

What began as a search for Irish traditions and customs that she could incorporate into her celebration ended up as an incredible pile of notes that eventually took on a life of its own. Long after her wedding, I was still obsessed with delving into history and folklore, looking for everything I could find on how weddings were celebrated in Ireland long ago.

I am convinced that if couples make the effort, they can have a totally Irish celebration from beginning to end - even to the pre-wedding parties. There's one quaint custom where the groom was invited to the bride's house right before the wedding and they cooked a goose in his honour. It was called Aitin' the gander — it has to be where we get the expression 'his goose is cooked!' We threw one of these dinner parties for my daughter and everyone had a great time. (The apple-potato stuffing has become a family favourite!).

Here are some more:

* Bunratty Meade is a honey wine that's served at the Bunratty Castle medieval banquet. It's from a recipe based on the oldest drink in Ireland and if you've never tasted it, it's well worth trying. In the old days, it was consumed at weddings because it was thought that it promoted virility. (If a baby was born nine months after the wedding, it was attributed to the mead!) Couples also drank it from special goblets for a full month following the wedding, which is supposedly where we get the word honeymoon. This was to protect the couple from the fairies coming to spirit the bride away.

* Lucky horseshoe. Irish brides used to carry a real horseshoe for good luck. (Turned up so the luck won't run out). You can get porcelain horseshoes which most Irish brides carry these days, or one made of fabric which is worn on the wrist.

* Magic Hanky. This charming custom involves having the bride carry a special hanky that with a few stitches can be turned into a christening bonnet for the first baby. With a couple of snips it can be turned back into a hanky that your child can carry on his/her wedding day.

* Make-up bells. The chime of bells is thought to keep evil spirits away, restore harmony if a couple is fighting, and also remind a couple of their wedding vows. Giving a bell as a gift has become an Irish tradition. You could also have your greeters hand out tiny bells to your guests to ring as you process. (You might want to let them know when they're supposed to be rung - perhaps mention it in your program along with an explanation of the custom). Guests could also ring their little bells at the reception in lieu of clinking glasses.

* Irish Dancers. Consider hiring a group of Irish dancers to hand out your programs before the ceremony. Dressed in their full regalia, it would add a wonderful touch of pageantry and colour. They could also dance at the reception later. We did this at my daughter's reception and it was a major hit.

* Music. There's so much wonderful Irish music available, you'll have no problems in finding appropriate selections for both the ceremony and the reception. The difficulty will be in deciding which pieces to play!

* Readings: My daughter had the following Irish wedding vow on the front of her program:

By the power that Christ brought from heaven, mayst thou love me. As the sun follows its course, mayst thou follow me. As light to the eye, as bread to the hungry, as joy to the heart, may thy presence be with me, oh one that I love, 'til death comes to part us asunder.

On the back of the program, she had this old Irish proverb: Don't walk in front of me, I may not follow. Don't walk behind me, I may not lead. Walk beside me and just be my friend.

* The Irish Wedding Song. Very popular at contemporary Irish weddings. We had two friends sing this at my daughter's reception while the newlyweds cut the cake. (Afterwards I thought we should have had the lyrics typed up and placed on the tables so that everyone could join in).

* Flowers. In the old days, many Irish brides wore a wreath of wildflowers in their hair; they also carried them in bouquets. For my daughter's wedding, our florist designed gorgeous bouquets that included a flower called Bells of Ireland. In Wales, brides carried live myrtle and gave a sprig to each bridesmaid which they planted. If it grew, the bridesmaid would marry within the year. If you're planning a more general Celtic celebration, this might be worth considering.

* Ancient custom: In the old days, couples ate salt and oatmeal at the beginning of their reception: Each of them took three mouthfuls as a protection against the power of the evil eye. Also, when a couple is dancing, the bride can't take both feet off the floor because the fairies will get the upper hand. Fairies love beautiful things and one of their favourites is a bride. There's many an Irish legend about brides being spirited away by the little people! For the same reason, it's bad luck for a bride to wear green. I've also heard that it's bad luck for anyone to wear green at an Irish wedding - but I think it really only applies to the bride. It's also bad luck for a bride or the groom to sing at their own wedding.

Portents and omens:

* A fine day meant good luck, especially if the sun shone on the bride. If you're a Roman Catholic, one way to make certain that it won't rain is to put a statue of the Infant of Prague outside the church before your ceremony.

* It was unlucky to marry on a Saturday.

* Those who married in harvest would spend all their lives gathering

* A man should always be the first to wish joy to the bride, never a woman

*It was lucky to hear a cuckoo on the wedding morning, or to see three magpies

* To meet a funeral on the road meant bad luck and if there was a funeral procession planned for that day, the wedding party always took a different road

* The wedding party should always take the longest road home from the church

* It was bad luck if a glass or cup were broken on the wedding day

*A bride and groom should never wash their hands in the same sink at the same time—it's courting disaster if they do

* It was said to be lucky if you married during a 'growing moon and a flowing tide'

* When leaving the church, someone must throw an old shoe over the bride's head so she will have good luck

* If the bride's mother-in-law breaks a piece of wedding cake on the bride's head as she enters the house after the ceremony, they will be friends for life.

Many other customs are interspersed throughout the book, e.g. (from the reception section) the top tier of your wedding cake should be an Irish whiskey cake which is saved for the christening of your first baby. I've also heard of another custom which just came to my attention and will be included in the next edition: a bottle of champagne is saved from the reception so that it can be used to 'wet the baby's head' at the christening.

In finally making this book a reality, my hope is that when he says to you 'would you like to be buried with my people', or you say to him 'would you like to hang your washing next to mine', you'll say yes, and then use the suggestions to help you plan an Irish celebration reflective of your roots and as romantic as your heritage.

And for all engaged couples and their families in the midst of pre-wedding chaos, I raise a parting glass: May all your joys be pure joy and all your pain champagne.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Dark and Stormy!

The drink not your day!

The Dark and Stormy is Bermuda's favorite cocktail. Made with Black Seal Rum and extra spicy ginger beer, it was brought to Newport in 1906 via the Newport- Bermuda Race. A ocean race for amateur sailors. Now known as the official cocktail for Newport sailors, it can make the perfect signature drink for your Rehearsal Dinner or Clam Bake Wedding. I like to use this as a signature drink at Clam Bake Rehearsal Dinners. Next time you are in town try one or make one at home.

1½ oz Gosling's Black Seal Rum
Ginger Beer
Method:1½ oz Gosling's Black Seal Rum, top with Barritts ginger beer.
Shake and garnish with lime
Newport Wedding

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The Cool Factor JFK's Style

JKF Style
By Kaye Betts for TIME Mulitmedia

The 35th President defined effortless American elegance

You must link over and see this slide show.
Its about JFK and how He shaped 20th century American style.
These iconic Images are something out of a J.Crew catalog or a Ralph Lauren advertisement. Michael Kors quotes "His unstudied sense of style is a constant touchstone when I design my men's collections each season"

You will truly enjoy this

It’s A Great Day for the Irish

It will be the 52 year for the Rhode Island Saint Patrick's Day Parade held in Newport, Come rain, snow, or shine, on Saturday, March 15th 2008. The parade will begin promptly at 11:00am from Newport City Hall and will proceed to Carroll Avenue at Saint Augustin’s Church in the heart of the Fifth Ward. The parade this year is estimated to last 2 hours and will include 10 Pipe Bands, 11 Marching Bands, 5 Fife & Drum Corps, 5 Clown Units, 5 reenactment units, and a host of local, state, and regional organizations including police and fire units, social/fraternal organizations, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Schools, and non-profits and maybe a great day to plan out your wedding day !

Haggle with a Wedding Vender?

Do so....... At you own risk.

Haggling for a good deal may be great for you wedding budget,
but on the day of your wedding it could be very bad news for you and your guests.

Lets face it every bride likes a good deal.
Equally every vender wants to feel they are being economical valued.
But when a wedding vender drops their profit margin too far, so will your service.
Staying that extra hour just won’t be available to you.
An additional waiter or assaitaint to make your day run more smoothly… Gone.
That extra special gross of full blown heirloom roses just flown in from California, won’t be in your bouquet. So in order not to have disrupted employs working on day of your wedding.

Here’s a few suggestions.

Have clean contracts and know what the vender is committing to what services will be reduced with the change of price.

Don’t follow industry guidelines on what you should be spending on each vender.

Buy the best talent your money can buy in your top 3 categories.

I worked with one bride that hired a Rock Star photographer but used a regional Vidiographicor.
Every one got paid well and by using a local vender she saved over $5,000.

Having your wedding not on a Saturday night in the can open up your venue budget by almost 50%.

Have your maids carry tussie-mussie vs. a standard size bouquet.

Buy a brides maids dress in white can open up your budget for a pair of highly lusted after Jimmy Choo’s.

If you not wearing a large ball gown skip the costs of a limo and hail a cab like Rhoda Mogenstein.
(your Mother will know who she is!)

A smaller group of top quality performers are better than a So So large band.

So by make the right economic choices, your wedding day can be a Win Win !

The Claddagh Ring

An bpósfaidh tú mé?
Will you marry me?

There are also a variety of legends about the origins of the ring

One tale is about Margaret Joyce, a woman of the Joyce clan. She married a Spanish merchant named Domingo de Rona. She went with him to Spain, but he died and left her a large sum of money. She returned to Ireland and, in 1596, married Oliver Ogffrench, the mayor of Galway. With the money she inherited from her first marriage, she funded the construction of bridges in Connacht. All this out of charity, so one day an eagle dropped the Claddagh ring into her lap, as a reward.

Another story tells of a Prince who fell in love with a common maid. To convince her father his feelings were genuine and he had no intentions of "using" the girl, he designed a ring with hands representing friendship, a crown representing loyalty, and a heart representing love. He proposed to the maid with this ring, and after the father heard the explanation of the symbolism of the ring, he gave his blessing.

One legend that may be closer to historical truth is of a man named Richard Joyce, another member of the Joyce clan and a native of Galway. He left his town to work in the West Indies, intending to marry his love when he returned. However, his ship was captured and he was sold as a slave to a Moorish goldsmith. In Algiers, with his new master, he was trained in his craft. When William III became king, he demanded the Moors release all British prisoners. As a result, Richard Joyce was set free. The goldsmith had such a great amount of respect for Richard Joyce that he offered Joyce his daughter and half his wealth if Joyce stayed, but he denied his offer and returned home to marry his love who awaited his return. During his time with the Moors, he forged a ring as a symbol of his love for her. Upon his return, he presented her with the ring and they were married.

Klansmen please sign in...

Pier Gustafson's Custom Celtic Sign In Boards
make a perfect wedding keep sake for you and your Klan!
They start at about $400
and can be designed with the colors of your choice with out a crest.
He is offers beautiful calligraphy services as well.