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So this weekend I traveled to Philly for my cousin Lisa’s wedding, also my second wedding of this year’s nine.  It had all the things I love at weddings: A short ceremony, a beautiful bride, wonderful food and open bar.  But also, really beautiful centerpieces.  Lisa’s pretty crafty and I have to give her credit for some very original and beautiful spring programs for the ceremony and really great reception favors.

I wanted to share her centerpieces and favors with you all because I thought she did such a great job.  The centerpieces themselves weren’t very big, but a clear vase full of beautiful bright colors against white looks FANTASTIC.  Orange Gerber daises, bright pink french tulips and purple calalilies burst from the center of the table, with half bottles of wine surrounding the flowers. Now, a lot of brides place the favors near the place setting rather than around the centerpiece, but here they were really a part  of the centerpiece and worked so well.  Plus a beautiful homemade tag goes a long way.  Printed quotes on love from songs and poems were pressed onto brightly colored paper and tied to the bottles with raffia.

I’m a big fan.

By Kerry Reichs

The Best Day of Someone Else’s Life
Due out May 6, 2008

Special Price $11.16 on

There’s a new book due out in May that takes 27 Dresses and combines it with the wittiness of Jennifer Weiner’s characters in In Her Shoes and The Guy Not Taken: Stories, and the sassy friendships and relationship antics of Candace Bushnell’s Sex and the City and Lipstick Jungle.

I thought it was just going to be another Chick Lit book, which I’ll admit, I do like, but it sat on my bedside table for awhile before I gave in. But, it’s not half bad. Predictable? Yes. Enjoyable? You bet.

As someone who’s attended several weddings and is and will be gracing the aisle for several more, this book makes light of the nonsense you come across while planning, buying, and attending someone else’s wedding and looking for love for yourself in all the wrong places.

It’s easy to identify with the 27-year-old heroin, Kevin “Vi” Connelly, who is literally a serial wedding guest/bridesmaid and takes us through the hilarious and sometimes trivial requests of her closest friends. But she loves the romance of weddings and despite being inundated with one after another, she tries not to lose site of the real reason for it all.

This is my favorite sum up of the book from the back cover.

“Eleven weddings in eighteen months would send any sane woman either over the edge or scurrying for the altar. But as reality separates from illusion, Vi learns that letting go of someone else’s story to write your own may be harder than buying the myth, but just might help her make the right choices for herself.”

I have eleven weddings in eighteen months. I feel like this is my story too, and I can only hope it ends the same 🙂

It’s definitely worth checking out.

Some valuable advice gathered from some wedding guests from a recent wedding my friend went to. Take notes.

  • Lighting Matters
    If your friends are thinking about getting married anywhere that has flourescent lighting, BEG THEM to do candles on the tables. Ambiance is everything, and flourescent lighting doesn’t make anyone look good. Plus, who wants to dance when it looks like they just turned up the lights at a 7th grade dance. Ever heard of a dimmer switch. Use it.
  • Photo Booths are Fun
    Yes. I firmly recommend these. I think they are a great expense and if you don’t have room in your budget don’t worry, BUT they are really, really fun and serve as a nice guest book substitute. That is, if you’re willing to give up one of the better photo’s on your strip to the bride & groom’s book.
    P.S. Wouldn’t it be cute if someone proposed in a photo booth… it would be like capturing the moment in 6 frames. If you know someone that happened to, please make them post pictures here.
  • Hire a Planner
    Unless the friend of the bride who happens to do events on the side is willing to either work the wedding- either for free or for money- make your bride hire a wedding planner. Don’t grab someone in the middle of the wedding and whisk them off to participate unless they’ve already agreed to do so. Wedding planning is fun when you’re aware of everything going on ahead of time, and works much better if you haven’t already had five Gin & Tonics. There’s no reason you should be waiting for 5 minutes for the bride-to-be at the end of the aisle because she doesn’t know her timing, unless she decided she wants out altogether. Do your job girls. Tell her when to go, and then take her phone away. No aisle dialing. Not allowed.
    Don’t skimp on music. It should be on always, always, always. When people arrive, their should be music. When people are enjoying their cocktails, there should be music. There should always be music. It’s one of those things that people don’t notice when it’s there, but if it’s missing, it can kill a party. Fast. ( Good music is better than Bad music) It’s worth mentioning
  • Don’t forget the Lemons
    If you’re bride and groom decided to buy their booze wholesale to try to save some cash make sure you remind them to get the lemons and limes too. Vodka Tonic does not taste the same with lime juice as it does with a lime. In fact, it’s gross.

    In other news…Wedding one is done. One down, Eight to go. It was the first time I didn’t bring a gift to the wedding itself. Usually I bring a money card, and once I lugged a blender or something to that effect to the actual wedding, never to be done again. But, I have to admit it was kind of liberating. Now, I just have to remember to actually send them a gift. You get a year right?

Ok. I am not an atheist, but in truth, I’m not a very good practicing Catholic. I go to church on Christmas Eve and Easter and any occasional Sunday I find myself in my hometown sitting next to my parents. It’s not because I don’t believe in God. I do believe in something, I just don’t think I necessarily need to show up every Sunday to prove it to to the world. I have a very good idea of my own faith and really, that’s what I need to get up everyday. So we’re all good.

Plus, the last few times I’ve gone to church the deacon did a whole lot of screaming about why we’re all bad people for not coming to mass enough, so me and the deacon…we’re takin’ a little break. After all, a good priest can make or break your Sunday mass right? I had a great priest in Boston… Father John. Now, HE was a good guy. Almost brought me back…. I digress. The reason for this religious rant is that there’s a new book out by Candice Watters called, “Get Married. What Women Can Do to Help it Happen.” Now, something tells me you’re not going to find this next to “He’s Just Not That into You,” or my new favorite book that’s set to hit bookstores next month, “The Best day of Someone Else’s Life.” (You’ll get a review on that one a little later). But, I thought I would share a few of Ms. Watter’s pointers which she directs toward “single [I’m assuming practicing, Christian] women who want to marry,” with you and give her some of my own bridesmaid banter.

  • Live a godly life, devoted to loving and obeying God.
    I love men. I don’t obey them, but I love them.
  • Stay out of debt.
    Marrying for money’s out?! Damn.
  • Watch your attitude about men so it doesn’t become too critical.
    WAYYYY too late for that.
  • Openly express your beliefs about marriage.
    Preferably on the first date so you can get everything out of the way right there at the beginning.
  • Be a good steward of everything you own—your body, time, money, attitude.
    Ok- I’ll give her that one. No one likes a girl that doesn’t give a shit.
  • Stay far away from premarital sex—it isn’t going to help you marry well.
    About that…
  • Don’t procrastinate, assuming that it is as good to marry at 32 as it would be at 22.
    Pretty sure people marry at lots of ages all the time. Can we cross check the divorce rate with this one?
  • Don’t aim so high—not every one marries their “soul mate.”
    Yeah, it’s a much better idea to settle. Please girls… lower your expectations.
  • Develop a multi-generational network of people who may be able to introduce you to potential gentlemen.
    So you better not wait till you’re 32, but be open to dating men anywhere from 16 to 92. Oh wait.
  • Include your parents in your network, and ask them to pray with you about finding a husband.
    Parents are doers. Let’s be honest. Praying isn’t gonna do it for them. If they find you a potential husband, you’re gonna hear about it.
  • There may come a point in a relationship when you have to force the issue—don’t let a guy hang around too long without stating his intentions.
    Marry me or we’re done. Anybody see that movie, “Love Stinks.” I don’t think that works out so well.
  • Don’t stay in a going-nowhere relationship, even if it means being alone for a while.
    True. Get out and move on to bigger and hotter things.
  • Pray boldly. Don’t pray like you’re apologizing for wanting the good thing God created.
    God created A LOT of very, very good things… But, we’re supposed to be praying for just the ONE right?
    Everyone’s entitled to their own opinion. This just happens to be mine. Take it or leave it. But try to laugh…. You can’t take yourself too seriously. There are no deadlines for your life. If you’re too busy planning things for later you tend to miss a lot of the important things happening right now. Hope the planning is going well girls.

    It’s kick-off weekend for the start of my own personal wedding season Saturday and this one promises everything from photo booths and caricature artists to an open bar and a full 500 person guest list to enjoy it with!

    It’s going to be like going to a bar mitzvah at Six Flags! More on Monday!

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