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Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Wedding Update: January

When they say times flies, that statement couldn't feel more true as we hit 2020 and plan for our wedding late this year. Some days I almost think we just got engaged, but wait that was over a year and a half ago. Our intention was to be engaged for 2 years, so we're right on schedule. With our wedding planning in full swing, I thought it would be fun to share updates for our destination wedding and might just keep me on track for crossing tasks off.

Why A Destination Wedding

Right after the excitement of getting engaged, we started to think about all the questions we were being asked-mainly where and when is the wedding? While I was never one of those little girls who dreamed about her big wedding, I'm more of the simple (or more refined) bride. My only requirement was wanting to get married on the beach. The beach is a place I continuously feel connected to and want to start our marriage in a place that is peaceful. From there, we had to consider our budget. We're both on the same page about being realistic and doing everything to save for our wedding on our own. We had started a savings account prior to being engaged, which we imagined would be for a house. So we agreed on using it for our wedding, but would aim to have a budget of $12,000 (and $3,000 for anything that goes over). Oh, let's add in that my fiance happens to have a very large family meaning we would need to accommodate 100 guests. With a small budget and my dream of a beach wedding, it cut down our options to having a local wedding.

Flashback to 2018 on our Mexico trip around Oaxaca, we ended up doing a day trip to Puerto Escondido and completely fell in love with the incredible beaches (where we took these pictures). After we got home, we inquired with several wedding planners about costs and it fit our budget and style.

Our Wedding Planning Trip to Puerto Escondido

Based on our previous trip, we decided we would get married sometime November 2020 and would be best to go a year before to meet with our wedding planners to see, plan, and taste as much as we can. While I'm not sure how we would plan this wedding without wedding planners in a somewhat remote area, I would highly suggest getting wedding planners. Our wedding planners, Diamond Weddings, were highly responsive using WhatsApp and available to communicate in English for me. 

With months of chatting with our wedding planners, we met them over a week this past November. While we had a week, it also familiarized ourselves with the town and area (sites, food, bars, beaches, accommodations). We know have a better understanding of where guests can stay and do.

Over the week, we did site visits, three food tastings, 2 cake tastings, met with photographers, had a hair/makeup trial, and even had a photo shoot with an amazing photographer, Fredy G. Noyola, who took all these pictures for our Save the Date. While I thought we would end the trip having almost everything finalized, that was not the case. Contracts have to be written, but more importantly you have to come to agreement with your partner and factor in the budget. As of now, there are still lingering quotes we need from vendors (this is why wedding planners are great) and sitting down as a couple to make decisions.

We Set the Date!

While we have narrowed down our venue options, again those quotes and contracts, we did finalize our wedding date-NOVEMBER 14,2020. It's a bit surreal and also makes it very real. It may seem risky to have a date before locking in our venue, but we're confident in our wedding planner and securing a venue by end of week. In the meantime, I had our Save the Dates made and have been sending/giving those out. You can catch a glimpse of our Save the Dates

I Have A Dress!

To most it's shocking that I found my dress on my visit first ever to try on dresses and under 30 minutes. But I've had a reputation with knowing what I want when it comes to important dresses. Happened with my prom dress and goes back to being a little girl crying for the dress of my dreams. I'm not that surprised that I found my wedding dress within one try, but it happened so quickly and effortlessly that it still amazes me on my decisiveness. More importantly it's a big relief to have it off my mind. While my dress was not included in our wedding budget, I thought it would be harmless to head to a sample sale from Floravere, a brand I had been eyeing after for one particular dress. Because it was a sample sale (insert crazy pushing and shoving), I only brought a good friend, actually it's the friend who introduced me to my fiance. Tried on the dress that I had in mind and a few more, but it was a done deal. And, no there wasn't any madness. They organized it to keep 2-3 brides in at once and given a stylist to help you through the gowns and try-on process. 

January To-Do's:

-Finalize our venue location
-Send remaining family/friends their Save the Date
-Finalize our cater
-Decide on our wedding photographer
-Decide on our wedding invitation design

That's all the updates for now, but if you have any questions about a destination wedding or wedding planning I'm happy to help!

Monday, August 12, 2019

3 Minimal Jewelry Shops

As I've become older, I find myself refining my look more. This includes my time and looking for quality and simplicity. My jewelry collection is a complete reflection of this. Pieces that are going to work over time and effortless, but still elevate my look. They're pieces that compliment, but don't compete. They're barely there, but there. And the best places I've found have been online. So today I'm sharing my 3 favorite minimal jewelry shops.

1. AU | Rate

Quality, ethical, minimal, luxury-this brand checks all the boxes! With New York roots, naturally they have an incredible selection of timeless dainty jewelry (think pass this on to my children). While the prices can range from $100 upwards, the quality from the actual piece to sourcing to packing is nothing short of refined.

2. Mejuri

This Canadian based jewelry brand offers all the minimal pieces for the girl on a budget. The pieces vary from gold-plated to 14K sold gold, but you're guaranteed to find the perfect gold piece for you or a friend.

3. Mod + Jo

The Dallas based jewelry line is female owned and operated, so think feel good shopping that supports a small business. The pieces are minimal, but lean more trendy. However, they still have that reach for everyday appeal. 

Hope this helps you discover some new places to shop for minimal jewelry!

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Skylar Scent Club Review

Non-toxic womens fragrances

One areas of my non-toxic and natural beauty journey that has fortunately been an easy transition is in the fragrance department. Fragrance in the beauty industry is considered proprietary property and therefore does not have to be disclosed. However, traditional fragrances are compiled of all types of chemicals. I'm a firm believer that our skin should be treated as an organ and what goes on it will go into it. So the second I smelled Skylar's perfumes, I was instantly hooked knowing they are clean. They're hypoallergenic, non-toxic, and cruelty-free. Recently, they introduced their monthly Scent Club. I should also note that I am not sponsored by them and genuinely want to share my thoughts. Their Scent Club is $20 a month that gives you a roller ball size fragrance that is only available for the month.

After much debate of joining, I caved at the last day it was available in their first month (that was April). I have been a member for four months now and do enjoy the surprise factor, the cute packaging, and having another clean fragrance. If you have ever priced non-toxic fragrance, you would realize how affordable this is. The Scent Club offers more accessibility to more people that might not be able to buy (or risk) a perfume at $100+.
Natural perfume subscription

This month's scent is Salt Air. It's timely for the Summer season, which all scents have fit the season. It's one of two that have been my favorites. Each month comes with a bookmark, a box that explains the scent, and will tell you other Skylar fragrances to layer it with.

Non toxic perfume subscription

As a person who is particular on the types of scents I am drown to, this has pushed my scent collection to being open to other notes. And as someone who would not be ok with that, for $20 a month it's a price I'm willing to do. Both May and June were not my favorite and I haven't really worn. For now, I'm keeping those two for my gift stash. Overall, I know this is a subscription I enjoy receiving each month and look.

Have you ever tried a scent subscription?