Monday, August 31, 2009

Beverage Monday

Today's Beverage Monday is about Fire. Or the brave men & women that are working hard throughout Southern California today, because when it gets hot here we catch on fire.
My son at his pre-school field trip to the fire station.

2 1/2 oz
4 oz cranberry juice
2 oz peach nectar

Everything must be ice cold. Pour vodka into glass, add cranberry juice and peach juice, in that order. No ice, no shaking or stirring. If you did it right, you'll understand the name.

Fire Engine
1 part Jagermeister®
4 parts red soda

Pour it in a highball glass with ice. Should be served cold.

Fire Fighter
1 shot Bacardi® 151 rum
1 shot Fire Water cinnamon liqueur

Mix 1 shot of Bacardi 151 and 1 shot of Fire Water together in a glass over ice. Strain into shot glasses and serve.

recipes courtesy of

Friday, August 28, 2009

~Friday Shopping~

Today we are featuring Something for the Guys.

Cufflinks to fit your personality. Instead of having the boring cufflinks that come with the tux/suit, why not get some cool ones to stand out from the crowd, after all it is the groom's day, too.

Wedding Day Cufflinks

Letter A Alphabet Cufflinks

They come in letters A~Z & they can be ordered in two different letters. So you can have the frist initial of both of you on each cuff, but you need to order at least two pairs. One for the groom and one for each dad.

Here is one for the guy that loves playing pool.

8-Ball Cufflinks

Or likes to fish.

Fishing Reel Cufflinks

Or is a sports fanatic

Baseball Cufflinks

Basketball Cufflinks

Football Cufflinks

Soccer Ball Cufflinks

Or Vegas, Baby!

Roulette Wheel Cufflinks

So many fun ones which one to pick?

Thursday, August 27, 2009


Natural Goat Milk Skin Care, soaps, facial cream & bath salts. All made from hand milked goats. They also make a vegan lip balm. The farm is located in Southern California, just a little south of Santa Barbara. The name of the company means goat in Spanish. They also use herbs from their garden in the products.

I heard about them when Lauren, the co-founder, came to an ABC meeting in Orange County earlier this month. We received a bar of soap as our favor. Which is in the photo below. The reason she was there was to promote favors for weddings or showers. They can custom blend scents and make a custom label for the items. They will also stamp them. Our bar was lily of the valley with a tree stamp. They do need at 60 days to make these since they are hand made, but for a unique favor or welcome basket gift, that will be used, this is a great item.


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Venues of the Southland~The Viceroy, Santa Monica

The Viceroy in Santa MonicaThe hotel is on the corner of Pico & Ocean Avenue. It is "an urban retreat at the shore" or so says their website. It has a cool vibe and the style inside is British/Hollywood Regency with lots of green, white, black & gray. The top three photos are from them and the rest are mine.
The twin plunge pools. You can buyout the poolside and outside dining rooms for a wedding of 180. This is an outdoor dining cabana. It is permanent so you have to adapt it to your event, but so cool.This is part of the Bristol Patio. The Bristol dining room holds about 70 guests.

I took these to give you a sense of what it looks like at night. They are not the best but you get the idea.
These plates are outside by the dining room.These are lined up in the lobby

I always love that when I see I new property they take us to see the rooms. This one has just been remodeled.
I love the guest bathroom.
This green restroom is off of the lobby. What a great restroom!
I love the look of the hotel. If you have a small guest list and are looking for a hip place, than this is a place to look at. One of the other coordinators on our tour talked about it looking a little South Beach. Judge for yourself. I like the vibe of the place. Alison Montgomery is the person to talk to about planning your wedding at the Viceroy.


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A Day in the Life of a Wedding Planner

Today, I am going to start telling you the multi-part story of what one wedding planner {me} did on the day of the wedding at a luxury resort. It was a daytime wedding. The ceremony started at 11am and the reception was over at 4pm. The ceremony and reception were at the same place. The Bride, Groom, wedding party and parents all stayed at the hotel the night before.

  • Wake-up. Shower & dress, in casual clothes. Say bye to my little boy who woke right as I was leaving.


  • Left home. I wanted to leave at 6:45-7:00 but, oh well.


  • Stop by a fast food drive through. Not sure when I will have time to eat later.


  • Arrive at the venue. Almost missed the off-ramp. I am so not a morning person and thought I was driving to San Diego, oops!


  • Park, go to the bell desk to retrieve the wedding stuff from the Catering Managers office. Too much for one bell cart need to call another bellman.


  • Get to the ceremony & reception site. Everything will be outside today. Photographer’s assistant arrives and we go over to the bride’s dressing room. She has been to this venue before and know the trick to get in without a key. Another photographer calls. She’s on the way. Their original photographer went into labor that day. There is confusion about which photographer is going to be with the bride.


  • Go see my Bride. So beautiful! She’s a bit nervous. Talk with the Maid of Honor. She just had a baby two weeks before the wedding and couldn't make it to the rehearsal the previous night. I gave her a rundown of what she needed to do. Told everybody that they needed to be ready by 9. One of the bridesmaids argued that she couldn't be. OK, not your wedding. Except the bride. The photographer’s assistant was loaning her BMW for the get-away car and the Mother of the Bride wanted to decorate it. So I get them together.


  • Start setting up ceremony & reception. They are within a few feet of each other. Checked in with the Banquet Manager, confirmed floor plan and table set-up. Started putting together their candy bar. Realize I don’t have the glue dots. Go to the Groom’s room. The groomsmen are rocking pink ties. The guys are so very restless. Had them go out to the lobby to wait for their photographer; Call the photographer to let her know that she needs to meet the guys in the lobby. Walked over to the bride's room to get the boutonnieres. The bride's photographer was taking shots of them so I asked her assistant if she could bring them to the lobby when she is done. Go to the lobby to let the guys know what's going on. The go back to the wedding area.


  • Continue the set up. Florist is working on the ceremony area, great. Met the Banquet Captain. She is fantastic and helps me A LOT! plus, she brought me some ice tea. The drink of the gods! She helps me set up Candy Bar. The first person of the string trio arrives. Concerned there isn't enough shade. So ask if we can get another umbrella over where they will be playing.


  • Continue setting up.


  • The DJ arrives. I introduce myself. You email and talk on the phone but you don't always meet the other vendors till wedding day. Hear the the guys yell out the DJ's name as the drive off for their photos.


  • Guestbook Attendants & one of the Ushers arrive. Let them know what their duties are. I also give them a timeline to look over. Get officiant and the trio together so they can discuss the cues for the ceremony. Finish setting up. Cake is there. I didn't even notice it arriving.

Part 2 will be next Tuesday.


Monday, August 24, 2009

Beverage Monday

Dog Days of Summer

Fuji Devil Dog Cocktail Recipe

1 oz gin
1 oz vodka
1 oz peach liqueur
1 oz peach schnapps
1 oz cranberry juice
1 oz orange juice
1/2 oz grenadine syrup

Combine all ingredients (except grenadine) and pour over ice in a Collins glass. Add a splash of grenadine for color. Decorate with a cherry and serve.

Red Dog
1/2 oz vodka (orange)
2 oz whisky
3 oz ginger ale
1 1/2 oz orange juice
1 1/2 oz cranberry juice

Pour vodka and whiskey into a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Add orange and cranberry juice, and shake vigorously. Pour over ice in a frozen or chilled Collins glass or tumbler. Slowly add the ginger ale, garnish with a maraschino cherry or orange wedge, and serve.
Caribbean Bulldog Cocktail Recipe

1 oz coffee liqueur
1 oz Caribbean cream
2 oz half and half
4 oz cola

Build the the coffee liqueur, Caribbean cream and half-and-half over ice in a tall highball glass. Add coca-cola and stir gently.
Dog photo courtesy of Greg Mankiss
Recipes courtesy of 1001 Cocktails

Friday, August 21, 2009

~Friday Shopping~

Mini Beach Ball Save the Dates

Aren't these cute? Little beach balls that your guests blow up to reveal your Save the Date. What a great way to start off your beach wedding. They are available through Lola's Big Day.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Venues of the Southland~The Shorebreak Hotel

The Shorebreak Hotel, Huntington Beach View from the hotel room we toured

The outdoor deck
It has different levels for intimate gatherings
These doors lead into the Ballroom

Gotta love the sand on the deck & the photo on the door, below.
The room even has a bean bag chair

The bathroom

The shower has dual shower heads

These images are ones I took at the Shorebreak Hotel. Remember, I showed you the fabulous food last week? It is an "upscale, lifestyle boutique hotel" located on PCH & 5th in Huntington Beach. They have been open for a couple of months, now. Their food is fantastic. They call it a hip, Huntington Beach Hotel. The banquet room doesn't have a view. They save that for the hotel rooms. And they don't have a pool since the ocean is just a stones throw away. The hotel doors have photos of random people at the beach with a little bit of loss sand added to them. The deck is cool, great for cocktails or a ceremony. There is beach grass, sand and fire pits. The deck doors lead into the ballroom.
If you want a cool, California casual place for your wedding then this is it. Stacey Hofflich is the person to see for weddings. But this week she is a bride.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Beverage Monday

Raspberries!!How about some raspberry flavored beverages for a Summertime treat?

Raspberry Martini

2 oz raspberry vodka
1/2 oz DeKuyper® Razzmatazz liqueur
1 oz Sprite® soda

Pour all ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well, then strain into a martini glass, and serve.

Cool Raspberry Love

1 1/2 oz raspberry vodka
1 scoop raspberry sherbet
1 tbsp frozen raspberries

Mix together in a blender with crushed ice until desired consistency. Serve in hurricane glass with fresh raspberries.

Raspberry Kiss

1 oz cream
1 oz brown creme de cacao
1 oz Chambord® raspberry liqueur

Pour ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake until completely cold then strain into a chilled martini glass.

Rose of the Ritz

3 oz Champagne
1 oz cognac
1 oz raspberry liqueur
1 tsp lemon juice
15 raspberries

Blend all ingredients (except champagne) well in a blender and pour into a wine glass. Add champagne, and serve.

Photo courtesy of
All drinks courtesy of

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Good Times

Here are photos of the great food I was served at a luncheon for the Association of Bridal Consultants Orange County on Tuesday. It was held at the new Shorebreak Hotel in Huntington Beach. I will talk about the venue and other vendors in another post.

The salad was made with endive, watercress and apples. It was served with a herbed goat cheese crostini.

The entree was an onion smothered rib eye with potatoes. Yummy and done just right.

And this fabulous dessert was a Peach Galette with Creme Fraiche. Oh My, it was served warm with the flakiest of crusts.

Happy Reading,