Friday, February 29, 2008

Leap Year

Happy Leap Year!

As you might have heard, this day carries a rather odd history. In the year 1288, Queen Margaret declared that on February 29, a woman had the right to propose marriage to any man she wanted. Men who refused proposals were actually punished for saying No! The fine took the form of a kiss, or a silk dress or pair of gloves given to the rejected lady. In those days, you didn't want to be the lady with the largest collection of gloves, I would think. Just a fun little FYI I thought I'd share with you.

Car trouble

The rest of your world doesn't stop just because you're planning a wedding. The everyday inconveniences of real life do pop up when you're in a stressed-out state, so try to look on the bright side when you experience a snafu.

This morning, I was a bit of a wreck over my car that wouldn't start, but I chilled by feeding myself some better thoughts: these are professionals I'm working with who are going to help me (the very sweet lady at AAA, the towtruck guy, our mechanic); it's not snowing; my car didn't burst into flames; I didn't run over Joe in the driveway this morning when we tried to push my car out into the street; my car was overdue for an oil change anyway; I've never ridden in a tow truck before. Yes, you have to get creative, and these thoughts often come after you've done a little bit of snapping (sorry, honey!). But my car's in the shop for an overhaul, and this timing is sure to be a blessing by saving me from even greater trouble in the future. So thank you to our mechanic Richie, for your great work on our behalf, and many congratulations on your upcoming wedding!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

You'll soon be able to see it

Now that I've seen Joe in his tux and worn my own wedding dress during my first fitting, I've got the visuals that allow me to imagine snapshots from our wedding day. I can see Joe at the end of the aisle, I can imagine us dancing to our song. And it's been an amazing shift in mindset from being in planning mode, and check-writing mode, to being in visualizing mode. You *have* to let yourself see images from your big day as the wedding day draws near, because you won't otherwise have anything to hold onto when the stress hits you. So if you're closing in on your wedding day, make that first dress fitting early and go with your groom to the tux shop. With those visuals, pretty soon, you'll have 'snapshots' of your own bringing a smile to your face too!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Praise for 'The Mother of the Bride Book!'

I just came home from my wedding gown fitting (it looks phenomenal, and I got my headpiece as well!), to find this:

I had the most wonderful time at my fitting -- Alyssa Tierney, the owner of the salon and a recent bride herself made the entire experience wonderful, and she LOVED the shoes that Joe got me as my wedding gift. We chatted about what it's like to plan a wedding when you're a wedding expert, how some things are more challenging than you expected, and it was such a fantastic discussion. So, brides, don't shy away from talking with other recent brides about their experiences -- it's unbelievably comforting to hear what they went through and what they did about similar issues. That often knocks a chunk of wedding stress right out the window.

Now for a little piece of final fitting advice...make sure you bring along someone who will be with you on the wedding day, like a maid of honor or a mom, since they will need to learn how to bustle your gown, help you get into the dress, fasten it up, detach a train, and yes, help you in the restroom. This is something you might not have thought of, so if you have your final fitting booked, make sure you call your MOH or mom to invite her along. You're going to want the help of someone who knows what she's doing on the wedding morning!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Our response cards are coming in!

I'm practically skipping to the mailbox every day to collect our response card envelopes, and Joe and I have an agreement to open them together. He gets half and I get half...which makes every day of our quick wedding countdown a celebration. We've only had one write-in of an extra And Guest so far, but that one was okay...we'll let that one slide. If we get any other response card 'surprises,' I'll make the phone call to correct it. This reminds me of a fabulous family memory: for my sister's wedding, we took an extra response card, wrote in an acceptance of 8 people with a note saying "Thank you for letting us bring our cousins and foreign exchange student Sven to the wedding", and my mom was perfectly poker-faced when she brought the card to my dad. My brother and I were laughing so hard, we had to turn around so my Dad wouldn't see. We got him with that one. For our wedding now, my brother just wrote in an e-mail response to the same effect, joking about his foreign exchange student Sven. So that was a fun faux-response for me. Will we have a sense of humor a few weeks from now? We shall see...but it's a ridiculous amount of fun right now.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

A sharp-dressed man

Last night, Joe and I went for his tux try-on, and the white vest with white long tie looks amazing. HE looks amazing. I had to fight back a little tear, because that's what he's going to look like on our wedding day! How awesome to get the snapshot now...these special moments make all the planning fuss less onerous. But we're in great shape, everything's completely organized and details are set...

Brides, try to arrange it so that you're there for the groom's tux shopping trip. I can't even begin to describe how fabulous a moment it is when he steps out of the dressing room in a tux. Sigh....

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Catch me on Get Married with David Tutera tomorrow morning!

My 5 Questions segment airs tomorrow morning on Lifetime Television, and also as Episode 40 on! So be sure to tune in!

Our invitations are out now, and everyone loves the beautiful job Linda at has done with our Carlson Craft design. Joe picked out the Willa Cather quote that we feature on our invitations, and the feedback we're getting is that they're elegant and classic. Just what we were going for! I'm working on the morning-after breakfast invitations right now, in between writing my newest book. Tonight, Joe and I go for his tux try-on, and then we're parked in front of American Idol for the evening. Bliss!

Tune in to Here Come the Moms on Wedding Podcast Network

My newest segment on Wedding Podcast Network is up! Tune in to 'Here Come the Moms' to find out the latest tips for moms planning rehearsal dinners! There's a lot of new stuff going on right now, so don't miss out on the top trends and etiquette issues, budget choices and hosting advice!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Time with Pam, Ron and the A-Team

This past weekend, Joe and I had the pleasure of spending time with my college roommate and bridesmaid Pam, as well as with her husband Ron and her kids Andrew, Abigail, Amanda and Aaron (the A-team). I've mentioned in my iVillage Weddings blog that you need to spend time with the most positive, supportive people you know, in order to keep your balance during this busy time, and I couldn't have asked for a better time spent with Pam and her family! Now Pam has always been a very positive influence in my life -- during college, I'm sure my GPA went up because of her impressive academic skills, and she's been my #1 source of spiritual and religious discussions. I am so, so lucky to have her friendship, and it was amazing to see the multi-faceted personalities of her kids, the fine example of the parenting skills that Pam and Ron use. So I'll see you in a few months, Pam! Can't wait! Thanks for traveling all this way to be with us!

The $50 Fine

With just two months to go until our wedding, Joe and I have hit the wall when it comes to people giving us a hard time, questioning our decisions, and making jokes about doing something embarrassing during the reception. What's funny about that? Seriously. If you must joke about the wedding, don't tell us about it. And if you do, we've established a $50 fine for giving us any trouble with the wedding plans. Every bride and groom runs into the Trying To Be Funny friend who jokes about wedding nightmares in a 'wouldn't it be funny if...' mindset, and the one universal truth is that other people don't realize how much stress there is to planning a wedding. So jokes can fall flat a lot faster. We know that people aren't trying to hurt us, but there has to be a limit to the joking input, and to other people making plans for our wedding day. $50 fines should do the trick.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Catch me on YouTube!

My segments are up on YouTube! So check me out at and look also for my Wedding Bargains segment there as well. (Host Audra Lowe is one of my new favorite people!) My co-author Casey Cooper has a segment on our book 'What's your Bridal Style?' as well! I'll be taping 4 more segments with in the coming months, so I'll keep you posted on my future expert appearances! I've missed a few of my own appearances on, so look for those archived on YouTube as well. Monday is my interview with Martha Stewart Sirius Satellite Radio, and then I get a breather....whew!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day!

A very happy Valentine's Day to you all! Since this is the #1 day for popping the question, you might be newly-engaged right now, and just starting your exciting season of online research. I encourage you to visit my site for my featured Don't List worksheets, so that you can clear away the things you know you *don't* want. It sounds simple, but it really gives you a good foothold to move ahead, communicate with each other, and co-create the wedding day of your dreams. If you're already in the process, it's not too late to do a Don't List! It could clarify a few things between you and your partner -- it's very important to honor each other's Don'ts! And to be able to express them to parents and bridal party members who are calling you with requests and suggestions.

And now, I'm taking the rest of the day off...enjoying a cup of hot tea and smelling the 2 dozen red roses that Joe got me for Valentine's Day, along with two pairs of great little beach shoes to wear on our honeymoon. He's the greatest!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Share Your Courtship Story

Here's a great way to share your one-of-a-kind love story with your guests at the wedding, at the rehearsal dinner, or at your bridal shower! Courtship-Stories turns your love story into a custom-created book and keepsake. Check it out at

It's Wedding Central here today! I've just booked the reservations for our morning-after breakfast, the tuxes are in for Joe to try on [we'll go on Valentine's Day!], and right now I'm on the hunt for the car we want to rent for the weekend. The date is fast approaching [is it the middle of February already?!], so we have to blast through all of these tasks so that we're not crazed in the weeks approaching the wedding. We were supposed to have our Budget Summit tonight, but that's not gonna happen. I have a deep need to focus on all the fun, positive things that we can accomplish right now. Talking money will be a much better experience if the To-Do list is a little more in order. We're on it. Teamwork.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Countdown to Caneel Bay

In just a few short weeks, Joe and I will be in that hammock. And on that beach. We chose Caneel Bay on St. John as our honeymoon destination, and we really didn't even consider anyplace else! Visit to see the beach that has been voted Best in the World. We'll be there, too. I have my new white bikini ready to go!

Do you need a galloon? How about a batwing?

No, these aren't exotic menu choices from an out-there caterer, and 'Survivorman' isn't your gown stylist...they're fashion terms. As you search for the perfect dress, make sure you're up on the industry lingo so that you can request the perfect details to your gown. Having an in-the-know vocabulary is part of our system for 'What's Your Bridal Style' (which I've co-authored with Casey Cooper), and it's essential for your wedding dress hunt. So here's a fabulous glossary for you to check out:
Bretelles, anyone?

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

The top color trends for 2008

Wedding couples look to the fashion runways as inspiration for their wedding colors, so we're seeing more Yellow as a top color choice for weddings this year. That's right, yellow. Bright yellow to a soft buttercup yellow, mixed with a palette of greens and whites, even oranges in the spring.

For later in the year, we're going to see bright jewel tones of ruby red, purple, vivid blues, and emerald.

And silver is hot! Metallics are big this year, with silver ranking at the top of the list! Be careful of your skin coloring, though, since silver doesn't work on everyone. Copper might be better for you.

It's going to be a beautiful, colorful wedding season! Check out my book WHAT'S YOUR BRIDAL STYLE? at for detailed questionnnaires to help you determine the best color choices for each of your wedding elements.

Monday, February 04, 2008

We are a Giants and Dolphins household

I was raised with Big Blue, and Joe has been a Dolphins fan forever. So in this historic SuperBowl, I wore my red and Joe wore his Dolphins tee shirt. And together, we watched the most-watched SuperBowl ever, saw the heart-tugging emotions passing through Peyton in support of his little brother [don't we all *love* to see such supportive siblings who can cheer for each other' triumphs?], and saw THE catch of all time. David Tyree is now a household it should be. And I don't think any commentators will be calling Eli 'Peyton' ever again. Among the many brilliant online productions, I leave you with's perfect. That's a Cleo waiting to happen.

Friday, February 01, 2008

In a SuperBowl state of mind

SuperBowl fever is EVERYWHERE here in New Jersey as Big Blue takes on the Patriots. It's all football all the time, wherever you go. Which brings up a great posting: Check out Dan Marino's wines at to see his vintages benefitting the Dan Marino Foundation [Hey Dan, you're invited to the wedding!]. We'll have these at our rehearsal dinner...

Go Blue! Section 321 loves ya'!

A great gift for NJ-NY-CT weddings

If you or your parents have everything they could ever want, and gift-giving is a challenge, think about giving the gift of an EXPERIENCE, such as a theater production, concert, comedy special, ballet performance. I love this idea for parents' gifts -- it's a gift card that can be used in an array of cultural and arts meccas in the Garden State: The recipient can go to any show he or she chooses, even shop in museum gift stores! This is brilliant!

If you're outside of this area, check with your state arts commission to see if they have a similar program, and check into gift cards for your nearby theaters and museums.