The real photos on your wall

Came across this on FB today and loved it!!!
You will take a lot of photos on your wedding day and while the more traditional ones will go to your mother and grandparents and his mother, the ones that make it to your wall probably be more along these lines!

42 Impossibly Fun Wedding Photos!

My 2 favorites from our big day are also posted below
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I would love it if anyone is willing to share theirs


One down….

Year one!!!! Done!!!! Technically I don’t think we are Newlyweds anymore but it sure feels like we are still in that phase….
My advice after the first year of marriage…teamwork! Put your partner first and approach everything as a team. My husband and I both have insanely busy schedules and finding time for each other has always been a challenge but we have doubled our efforts over the last year to make sure that we get at least one night a week for the two of us. It’s not always easy but it’s definitely worth it, we are on to year 2 and I couldn’t be more thrilled.
Good luck to everyone struggling to find the time,

The hairy truth!

O.k. so you have spent all this money on your dress (which looks amazing). You’ve booked a gorgeous space for the reception, you have kick- a*! shoes, he looks fabulous in his tux and you ask your girlfriend to do your hair and makeup!  WHAT!!!! ladies this is a major no-no…. unless your girlfriend is a licensed cosmetologist with a chair at a reputable salon or like my girlfriend Nicole… licensed but works from home, then what are you thinking!!!!!!!!!!  You just spent literally thousands of dollars on this one day and you won’t kick in the extra loot to ensure that you look amazing? crazy!

Your best girl that does your hair before you head out for a Friday night is not the person who should be handling your locks before your big day. Find a professional who specializes in nothing but hair and make a minimum of 2 appointments. The first is a run through of your big day (make sure to take pictures) and the 2nd is for the morning of your event. Don’t stop there, your regular make-up is not going to cut it for your wedding neither is your best friends stab at a “smoky eye”. Go and see a professional make-up artist to ensure you look as amazing as possible, throw down the extra money and get airbrushed so that way you look as good at 1am as you did at 10am. Your hair and make-up for your wedding day is nothing to mess with, you have to look at these pictures for the rest of your life do you really want to look back and regret you didn’t trust it to a pro? You have already scrimped and saved to make everything else amazing do yourself a favor and set aside a few extra bucks to make sure you look and feel smokin on your wedding day.

Trust me it’s worth it.



We’ve come to a decision.

Thanks to everyone who weighed in on my blog “HELP” last week. Shawn and I gave it a lot of thought and considered all the good advice and we are going to skip a wedding reception. You my readers were right, I was only doing it because I thought it’s what everyone else wanted but it’s not what I wanted. We decided instead to hold a house-warming bbq on our 1 year anniversary. I think it’s the best way to enjoy our first year together as a married couple. What better to have good food and good company in our new home! We decided to take the money we would have spent on a reception and to have a true honeymoon before we start trying for kids.In the grand scheme of things you would look back on and regret, I feel like that time alone together means more to us than a big reception and I would not want to regret missing that.

Note * to all my reader who are friends and clients, I am NOT knocking big receptions!!!! I just didn’t think it was right for us!!!*

Thanks again for all the good advice!

follow your heart…


Wide world of flowers

Today’s topic is for girls like me, let’s call us “Brides on a budget”. If florals are what you envision in your centerpieces than below is a quick and easy color guide to let you know what’ sin season during the month of your wedding. If you stick to these flowers your budget with your florist will be significantly lower. Anytime you order florals that are out of season or not grown local your price can skyrocket! A helpful hint get pics of things you like and a color scheme you want then let your florist do the rest. Remember they are professionals in what they do and they have a better knowledge of flowers and what will and will not work well. I walked into my floral appointment and said I want flowers in a long low rectangle shaped vase and I want them in all blues and whites, that was the extent of my involvement with the florals. I trusted my florist knew better than I did and below is the finished product!

My table before it was set. My table before it was set

Summer Flowers
Alstromeria- Orange, pink, yellow and cream
Chrysanthemum- White yellow, orange and pink
Gerber Daisies- Pink, yellow, orange, red and white
Hydrangea- White, blue, purple and pink
Statice- Purple
Sunflower- Yellow
Zinnia- Red, Orange and Pink

Fall Flowers
Aster- White and pink
Chrysanthemum- White, yellow, orange and pink
Dahlia- variety of colors
Statice- Purple
Zinnia- red, orange and pink

Winter Flowers
Amaryllis- Red and white
Bells of Ireland- Green
Poinsettia- Red and white
Ranunculus- white, pink, red/coral, lavender/purple
Tulip- Many colors
Jasmine- White

Spring Flowers
Anemone- Blue, red, pink, white
Casa Blanca Lily- White
Delphinium- White and blue
Peony- Pink or white
Sweetpea- white, pink, red/coral and lavender/purple
Hyacinth- Purple, Pink or white.

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The list above are just a start, for more info on seasonal flowers check out type in seasonal wedding flowers. They have a more complete list.
Most importantly find a florist who listens to your budget and trust them to do the rest!

Have fun!


The day I married my best friend!

The day I married my best friend!

Dear readers,
I know I am still fairly new to this blogging thing and I am supposed to be a wedding pro but I have come across a question of my own that i just can’t seem to answer. My husband Shawn and I chose to do a small, quick wedding back in June, we got engaged in the end of March. There were a lot of reasons to why we didn’t want to wait more than a few months to get married and to why we wanted to do a small wedding ( think 20 people small). I will never regret that decision and that day was the best day of my life but we did give up certain things and missed out on a few moments. That being said it’s been expected that we have a reception on our 1 year anniversary so that we can celebrate with the guests that didn’t attend the ceremony and also it allows us the opportunity to get back special moments ( first dance, toasts ect..) that we missed the first time around. When we first discussed doing a small wedding we always intended to hold a large reception a year later, that was the plan! However after over half a year of marriage it is starting to seem unimportant. Things like buying a house and having a baby are more pressing issues and I am having a hard time justifying the money for a reception when I am a year deep in my marriage. The problem is all of our friends and family that weren’t invited to the ceremony already feel slighted and I don’t want to cause anymore hurt feelings then I already have. What to do in a situation like this?
I find myself at a loss and considering I almost always have the answer when it comes to this type of stuff I feel like I am traveling foreign waters.
Comments and suggestions are most appreciated especially if anyone who follows has been in a similiar situation, and to my family and friends please don’t hesitate to be honest.

Thanks for the help!

Buying the Dress Part 2

So here I am 2 weeks from my wedding, no dress and in the throes of a complete meltdown. Where was I going to find a dress that didn’t require weeks of alterations and more importantly how much was this going to cost me?  Off to David’s Bridal we went, they were the only place you could buy off the rack and take it with you that night. Walking into their lobby I finally started to get emotional about what exactly we were there to do, I was buying my wedding dress!! MY WEDDING DRESS!!!!  where did I even begin? Hours of parading back and forth in front of my dad, mom and sister (via I-phone) finally led me to what I had been looking for all along, how did I know this was my dress? I couldn’t stop crying while I was in it!  Dad had tears in his eyes, mom was all choked up and my sister kept chanting “That’s the one, That’s the one”. The dress made me feel gorgeous it fit well, hid the parts I hate and enhanced the parts I love but most of all I knew that it was gonna stop Shawn dead in his tracks. Thank God my mom was waiting for this moment so her and Dad were prepared when I looked in horror at the price, quick stop at the Universal Bank of Amazing Parents and the dress was mine! The best part of the story is the dress fit perfect so all it needed was to be hemmed up for my shoes (I wore flats because I am a baby!). I got lucky, really, really lucky this story could have ended so much worse but didn’t. The moral here? be honest from the beginning and get started early and you won’t be having a mental breakdown on your mother 2 weeks before your wedding because your dress is hideous and the idea of wearing it in public makes you feel pukey!

Good luck and happy shopping!


Buying the Dress Part 1

Buying my wedding dress was a fiasco, I am sure that not only did I make my mom nuts but also my sisters and my best friend though I went off the deep end. Let me backtrack, when Shawn and I got engaged back in March we decided that we didn’t want to wait to get married. We had been together for almost 5 years and as he s eloquently put it he didn’t need a big party he just needed me to have his last name (hallmark moment!). The general consensus was that because of what I do for a living my own wedding would be some huge over the top party, but that couldnt;t be further from the truth. I never really wanted a big wedding I had always envisioned us alone on a beach somewhere with a judge and a few handfuls of friends and family. I was so tempted to do a destination wedding but I didn’t want to put that kind of financial burden on the people I loved especially because we would not be giving them adequate time to plan and prepare. I knew I wanted a wedding this year so I began looking at open dates at our hall as far as I could tell I had 2 options either June 8th or Dec 22nd. I needed to plan around the hall’s schedule because obviously mom and I would be gone also Kelly would be attending the wedding as well and that left no one to look after Farina’s. I wanted December 22nd but was overruled because it was to close to christmas, so we settled on June 8th.  because we were doing a very low-key intimate party (the guest list was 21 people including us) I didn’t think much a bout a dress.I knew we were planning on hosting a large party on our 1 year anniversary and was going to wait to purchase “the dress” so I went online… cue the scary music. From the start I downplayed the importance of my wedding I was so focused on the being married part that I forgot about the fun included in the getting married part. My mom knew from the beginning that I wasn’t making choices based on what I wanted but based on being practical but she wisely stayed silent. I decided no cakes, no centerpieces, no linens and no dress. I just didn’t want to burden anyone with the financial responsibility especially since I was trying to get this all done in 3 months, anyway fast forward to 3 weeks before the day. My dress had arrived about a month prior but I didn’t try it on, I was losing too much weight to fast and I wanted to wait till just before it went in for alterations to see how it would look… HUGE MISTAKE! I tried it on in front of my mom and best friend and instantly hated it. I don’t mean dislike I mean hate as in get that ugly thing away from me, what was I thinking,  there’s no way in God’s green earth I m wearing that hated it but I forged on. I plastered on a smile and try to look for things that I liked, I truly believed I had my mom and Kelly convinced that I loved it. That night I went to bed miserable, I hated that dress and now I felt stuck, the next morning I admitted defeat, at 8am I called my mom and in hysterical tears told the truth. I hated the dress! I did want centerpieces! I needed to have chair covers and I couldn’t live without a wedding cake! I was sobbing like a child in the middle of a full-blown meltdown and she starts laughing and says Finally!!!!  I have been waiting for you to get emotional about this. She hated the dress, Kelly hated the dress, my dad hated the dress and everyone agreed Shawn would really hate the dress.

Time to Shop!


Always @Farinas!

Blogging! Ok here it goes!!!!  After much thought and debate the name suddenly popped into my head Brooke@Farinas… of course its perfect because I always seem to be @Farinas!!!!  Let me start by saying, I am not a writer… never have been, so please be kind when reading my blog because I am sure mistakes and errors in grammar will be abound.  The decision to do a blog came after my own wedding back in June. Going thru the process myself has given me a whole new perspective on my clients and what they go thru while planning their own weddings. I thought being a planner for a living would make it easy but there is a whole world of problems and issues I had  no idea about. My hope with my blog is t o give realistic suggestions and ideas (as well as opinions) on how to navigate the murky waters of throwing a large-scale event. Along the way I would like to throw in Tips, suggestions and ideas as well as a few funny stories! If you are looking for David Tutera style magic or Bridezillas drama, this blog is not for you but if honest advice, real life experience and some good old-fashioned humor is what you need then feel free to follow along!!!

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Thanks for reading!!!!