Wedding Planning: The Venue

So many people told us “Good luck!” and “Try not to stress too much!” when it came to picking a wedding venue. They clearly don’t know me very well!

My fiancé proposed to me on November 9th, 2017. We had our venue booked by December 3rd

I wanted to start the process right away and I wanted to make sure I found a place that we could make our own! So, I started doing research.

Too many venues in Westchester and NYC are very plain and all have the same décor and they don’t let you customize things too much. On top of that, they are extremely expensive! The average for a moderately sized venue for just under 100 guests in Westchester County is about $140/person, before all the taxes and fees and so on.

If you’re looking into NYC and Brooklyn, forget it. There is a beautiful venue called The Foundry in NYC. It almost looks like a giant greenhouse, and since we are having a very boho-inspired wedding with lots of greenery, this place looked perfect. BUT, the cost for food & beverage was $150/person and that didn’t include chairs, tables, linens or any entertainment whatsoever. After all the chair rentals and linens and so forth, you’re looking at almost $200/person or maybe even more.

We wanted something different. So we thought outside of the box. We wanted a place that had a beautiful view, not a window that looked at NYC or a brick wall. We wanted a place where we could bring in any décor we wanted (as long as we didn’t put holes in the wall). So, we looked a little more north.

The further up north (away from the city) we looked, the more that we discovered there were these tucked away gems of venues that offer amazing packages. We also thought about all the people that would be traveling to the wedding. Some from upstate and some from Westchester, where we live.

After only 3 weeks of looking and researching, we went to Cove Caste in Greenwood Lake, NY. Greenwood Lake is about 30 miles west of the Tappan Zee Bridge (I will never call it the Cuomo Bridge). We went and saw that this place was BEAUTIFUL! It has a restaurant with an outdoor bar downstairs, along with a stage on a mini beach for live music! Upstairs was the room for the reception. It is incredible! It has these beautiful big windows that look right out on to the lake. The ceremony has an altar down near the water on a stained wood platform. What was the really great part was the difference in cost and what we got out of it. They include all the tables and linens and chairs and even wedding cake. They offered a signature cocktail we can make for our wedding and they are letting us do any kind of décor they want! They even own a 2 bedroom apartment across the street where they have the brides and bridesmaids get ready!

We just went to our tasting with our parents and ate on the water, and we couldn’t be happier that we chose this place. It actually is less travel time than having to get down to Brooklyn on a Saturday night, which worked out better for all of our guests!

The main point of all this is that if you plan ahead, do your research and know what you want, there is no reason to settle for a regular venue that overcharges. A wedding is your day and you are the one that makes it memorable.

You may think three weeks is fast, but it could be worse. It only took me an hour to choose my wedding dress!

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Tips for Organizing a Pantry!

This weekend I decided it was time for me to actually figure out a neat plan for my pantry. When I first moved in I bought a couple baskets and jars. But, everything still just ended up looking messy. When things are messy it gets so hard to find things that you need and things get forgotten.

Brace yourself! This is the before picture and I don’t even know how it got like this!

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I definitely needed to get more baskets, smaller jars and a shelf so I would be able to see everything I have without moving everything around.

I went to homegoods and Marshall’s to get most of the stuff I needed. It’s way cheaper then The Container Store and I think they have really cute stuff!

This is what I came up with!

 

 

As you can see, I dedicated the top shelf to my little furry child. I found these super cute white and black cat baskets that I used to store her extra food and treats. In the middle, I found this Rae Dunn jar that just says meow and that holds her everyday dry food! So cute!

The next shelf I did all my jars, they still don’t all match yet but we’re working on it!

I bought these from IKEA a while ago and it makes pastas and rice look a lot better in glass jars rather than boxes!

I found a white metal shelf that’s originally for plates but it works so well to be able to see all the jars at once.

Next I decided to put all my canned goods. I bought this 3 level shelf to put everything in order and it made the biggest difference!

338FD2E0-9CDB-4941-8EC8-C6EA469F9991The last two shelves I used baskets also black and white to tie in everything.  I used these to store snacks, bread and all of kitchen tools! It just makes everything a lot neater and clean-looking and I’m so proud of how it came out!

What to you think?! Let me know in the comments below!!

xoxo

 

A Day In Brooklyn​

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Chris and I went to Brooklyn just to hang out and walk around.

We stopped at this really awesome market that has all handmade items!

Fad Market  

 

 

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I bought this bracelet! Some of the money went to planned parenthood, but they had others that went to different charities to help women’s rights and even the environment.

Check them out!

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We also got these amazing handmade cups and I’m living for them! Aren’t they the cutest?! I was in love with the indent that helps you hold the cup!

The guy that made these was amazing he even had some really cool bowls that I think im definitely going to get soon!

Check him out! Jonathon Castro Designs

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What To Do In Cancun Mexico!

I just got back from my 5 day trip with my friends in Cancun, Mexico and I wanted to share some of my experiences and activities I did there.

Resort: The Oasis Palm

Pros: This is an all inclusive resort so that means food and drinks are included, which is great because going away and buying 3 meals a day can really add up.  There were 2 pools and they also had a great kid section if you travel with kids. The resort was right on the beach so all you had to do was grab a towel and jump right in!

Cons: Some things I didn’t like about this resort was little things were extra money. For example, the safe in your room and also the sodas in the mini refrigerator. They had a gift shop in the resort which was pretty pricey if you needed to buy extra sunscreen, meds, etc.

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Activities: Beach 

Pros: The first and probably most popular thing to do in Cancun is to enjoy the beaches! The sand is white and the water is clear and blue what else could you ask for?! So get yourself a drink and lay out and enjoy the sun.

Cons: SUNBURN!

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Sailing: Isla Mujeres Luxury Sailing

Pros: My favorite thing we did on this trip took a boat to the island Isla Mujeres. We got to snorkel in the middle of the ocean before getting to the island. We saw the most beautiful tropical fish and also an underwater museum!  After that, we were given lunch and drinks on the boat before docking and exploring the island. We were given 2 1/2 hours to do our own thing on the island, we rented golf carts and motorbikes and set off to see what this island had to offer. The island was filled with shops, people and street art. After that, we went back on our boat for some swimming, paddle boarding and drinks. On our way back to dock we got to witness the most beautiful sunset I’ve ever seen so if you do this make sure you get the later time because you won’t regret it!

Cons: It seems like a lot of tourists go here so things can be a little pricey if you want to buy some things at the shops but you can definitely haggle to get a lower price.

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Water Park: XEl-HA

Pros: We took an hour and a half car ride to Xel-Há in Riviera Maya to experience a natural water park. They offer so many activities for everyone to do. We snorkeled, swam in caves, cliff jumped and even enjoyed floating around in a lazy river. The food and drinks are also included at this park as well!

Cons:  Its a lot of walking! After lunch, my friends and I had to rest because our feet were hurting from not having water shoes and walking for so long. But they do have hammocks where you can lay out and maybe even take a nap!

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Overall I had a great time in Mexico and really enjoyed seeing a new exciting place ❤

Sur La Table Cooking Class With The BF

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Chris has always loved cooking so when it came to picking out a gift for him I thought taking a cooking class would be super fun.

I booked this class online at Sur La Table in the Ridge Hill shopping center. The class was about 2 hours and 30 mins long, which flies by once you start chopping away.

fullsizeoutput_1045fullsizeoutput_1051fullsizeoutput_104cfullsizeoutput_1048The first thing on our menu was

  • Tuna and Avocado Ceviche with Plantain Chips

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Next was:

  • Roasted Corn Salad with Chile, Lime, and Cotija Cheese (which was my favorite!)

IMG_8788fullsizeoutput_1055fullsizeoutput_1059The main dish:

  • Char-Grilled Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

fullsizeoutput_1057 Last was the dessert:

  • Mayan-Spiced Chocolate Pudding With Whipped Cream

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Our Teacher Jessica Woodford was filled with information and eager to help us and she also made it fun, light and funny.

At the end of the class, your group (groups of 4) gets to eat everything you just made, which is probably the best part of the whole thing!

The whole experience was so fun, you get to meet new people and learn hands-on from a chef. Most importantly, you get to bond with whoever you go with. Chris and I had a great time laughing and working together to make a great meal. We’re already looking forward to more classes, maybe baking but that might be a disaster, haha!

Have you ever been to a cooking class?? What did you make?

xoxo

My Favorite Places To Eat In NYC During Spring!

Chris and I took a little trip to NYC to get some tasty treats and have a little date and I wanted to share it with you guys!

We stopped at Taiyaki first to get this adorable and delicious ice cream!

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Location:

119 Baxter St
New York, NY 10013

b/t Canal St & Hester St
Little Italy, Chinatown

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I got The classic which is vanilla, custard filling, strawberries, wafer, and chocolate drizzle because I’m basic hah. It was amazing, I think the best part is the wafer. It looks hard but its actually soft more like a pastry and man was it good!

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Chris was more adventurous and got Straight Outta Japan which is matcha sesame swirl, red bean filling, machi and a wafer!

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After ice cream, we walked around Soho and took some photos for my New York State Of Mind OOTD. When that was done we wanted to get some pizza like every New Yorker, hah!

Went to one of our favorite places, Artichoke Pizza!

Location: 114 10th Avenue
New York, NY
10011

We ordered 6 slices and shared them. The waiter thought it was way too much food, but we proved him wrong by only leaving crust at the end!

Slices we had:

Artichoke – Spinach & cream sauce, artichoke hearts, mozzarella & pecorino romano cheese

Margherita – Plum tomato sauce, olive oil, fresh basil & a blend of Italian cheeses

Vodka (Sicilian Style) – Vodka cream & tomato sauce, a blend of Italian cheeses (my FAV)

Meatball Parm – Homemade meatballs, mozzarella & reggiano cheese, cooked tomato sauce

Crab – Lobster Sauce, surimi crab meat & fresh mozzarella

White – Ricotta, fresh mozzarella, pecorino romano & reggiano cheese

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What’s your favorite place to get pizza or ice cream? Comment and me know! ❤

New York State Of Mind OOTD

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Hello, my favorite internet people!

Today I decided to do a fashion post! Which is rare because to me I dress pretty simply, but I had a great backdrop for some photos and I decided: why not?

Location: Soho New York City

Top: American Eagle

Jacket: Marshalls

Jeans: New york and Company

Bag: Rebecca Minkoff

Shoes: Forever 21

I feel like my fake leather jacket is a big staple in my wardrobe, it can really help put an outfit together and bring a little extra something to my look. Soon it will be too hot and I won’t be able to wear it, so I’m going to over wear it while I can!

What’s your favorite spring outfit? Is it mostly black like mine? Haha

Brittany