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Xochitl Gonzalez

Xochitl\'s Weddings Blog

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How to Find a Wedding DJ that Wows

Monday March 31, 2014

Your wedding DJ: he or she can make or break the reception.  If you've ever been to a wedding where the DJ was a dud you know how important hiring a great wedding DJ can be in making your wedding night one to remember.  Too often couples get so anxious about hearing music they love, they micromanage their DJ or ask questions that don't offer you any insight into if this DJ will really get the crowd moving.  Instead, this article will offer you some key questions to ask when hiring a wedding DJ so that you can rest assured that you don't just have a good DJ spinning at your wedding, you've got the best person on the 1's and 2's that your money can buy.

 

5 Tips for Amazing Wedding Photos

Saturday March 29, 2014

Everyone wants to look like a number one stunner on their wedding day, but most of us want to look amazing AFTER the day too: as in, when we see those fabulous wedding photos. Sure, you can hit the gym and get a spray tan and hire a fabulous glam squad.  Truth is, all that won't hurt, but the real deal is to put some thought into how to best work the day and hire a fabulous photographer that makes you feel great.  This article has 5 great bits of advice for achieving fabulous wedding photos that have NOTHING to do with hair and makeup and everything to do with pre-planning.

Creating a Wedding Budget that Works

Monday March 17, 2014

If you are recently engaged, you probably have realized that wedding budgets are like diets- the more ridiculously strict they are, the less likely you are to stick to it.  This article presents you with a step by step guide to creating a realistic wedding budget that will actually work for you, and not against you.

All too often, couples get frustrated because they don't even know how to determine what the wedding they want will really cost. Or worse, many couples might secure a venue that is way to pricey for their overall budget without realizing all the other expenses that are out there. The first step is doing some research, and the next is asking the hard questions like how much are you willing to spend to have your dream day. Remember, establishing a budget and sticking to it might sound dull, but it can actually be a huge relief!

Can You Say No to Being a Bridesmaid?

Wednesday February 26, 2014

Being asked to be a bridesmaid is seen as a great honor amongst friends and family- but are there occasions when you might be doing the bride a favor by saying no?  In some cases, I think yes.  One reality is that being a bridesmaid often comes with a lot of expenses, ranging from the dress and shoes to travel and hosting a shower and bachelorette party or hen night.  If you know that being part of the wedding party will put you in a tight place regarding your finances, it's best to discuss it rather than you should be honest with the bride.   Most likely she's close to you and she will either understand completely, or  she will either want to help work out your participation.  What services no one is having a bridesmaid who is resentful of participating, since it drags the mood down for everyone.  Another instance where it's sometimes better to say no is if you have what some people call "stagefright".  If the idea of walking down the aisle past a gaggle of guests literally gives you hives, it might be best to back away and explain your phobia to the bride.  You wouldn't want your anxiety to affect her mood on the wedding day.   Generally speaking though, being a bridesmaid is both an honor and a rite of passage, so I don't think "no's" should be wielded lightly.   What do you think? Have you ever said no to being a bridesmaid?

Does a Big Marriage Proposal Automatically Mean a Big Wedding?

Tuesday April 30, 2013

The trend for elaborate marriage proposals keeps growing, fueled in part by tv shows like Mobbed, which has helped stage giant flash mob engagements, and viral videos such as Isaac's lip dup proposal. I assumed that such a giant amount of planning meant that the wedding would be equally elaborate. But I've now heard of several couples who chose a quiet and intimate ceremony after a big production proposal. Perhaps the couple already got plenty of public attention and love, and thus only want a private moment. Or perhaps the proposal exhausted all planning energy and money, leaving them wanting only simplicity. What do you think? Would you rather have a big proposal or a big wedding?

How to Save Money While Being a Bridesmaid

Tuesday April 30, 2013

Being a bridesmaid is expensive! Along with expected costs like buying  a dress, there are many hidden costs such as travel, accessories, and even those bachelorette party favors. Here's what it really costs to be a bridesmaid, along with some practical ways to save money.

I Love Marriage Proposals!

Tuesday April 30, 2013

You would think after ten years of writing about weddings (and fifteen years of event planning), I'd be blase about everything wedding related. But when I was editing this reader's marriage proposal story of their New Year's Eve engagement in Dubai, I teared up! I just couldn't help it, thinking about her surprise and excitement, as well as how much work he put into making the moment magical. So at the risk of completely blowing my cool cover, I'm just going to come right out and say it. I love marriage proposals! I'll never get tired of reading about them, from the simplest casual ways of popping the question to elaborate stunt proposals.

If you're thinking of getting down on one knee, be sure to read our marriage proposal ideas and the Dos and Don'ts of Popping the Question. If you're just a romantic like I am, you'll want to read all of the real marriage proposal stories that our readers have submitted. Just keep the tissues handy!

What Does a Traditional Wedding Mean to You?

Tuesday April 23, 2013

When you think of a traditional wedding, what does it mean? Depending on your culture, class, and geographic background, what you think of as a traditional wedding might be extremely different from someone else's idea! I'd love to hear from you about what you think of when you think tradition. Is it a white dress, a long aisle, and a religious ceremony? Is it formal wedding attire, and a reception at a country club? Is it bridesmaids and groomsmen, and the involvement of family? Is it a part of the ceremony that's unique to your religion or culture? Let us know in the comments on this blog post!

The Tale of Two Billionaire Weddings

Tuesday April 16, 2013

The plans for Facebook billionaire Sean Parker's upcoming wedding keep getting more fantastical and more expensive. He's spending a reported $10 million dollars on elaborate sets, costumes, and lodging in Big Sur, California.. Guests will get outfitted by the Lord of the Rings costume designer, and entertained in a bespoke fantasy land that includes faux ruins, waterfalls, bridges and a gated cottage, all created especially for this wedding. We're sure the wedding weekend at The Ventana Inn and Spa will include plenty of spa treatments and outdoor activities.

Contrast that with Facebook founder (and fellow billionaire) Mark Zuckerberg's wedding last year. He and Priscilla Chan turned a backyard graduation party into a surprise wedding. They served Mexican food from their favorite local restaurant, and the decor was natural and simple.

The comments on today's news stories about Parker's elaborate wedding plans include criticisms of wasted money, and playing dressup. Yet when billionaires have a less expensive wedding, it's rarely because they plan to donate those millions to charity. Instead of just socking the money away in the bank, Parker's wedding is supporting artists and craftsmen, and creating jobs.

Last week, we saw what a $9000 wedding looks like. Now, we see the flipside with this wedding and other outrageously expensive weddings. If money were no object, what would your wedding look like? Personally, I'd start with treating all of my loved ones to a beautiful and fun vacation, and I'd bring along some incredible musicians and artists to add to the celebration. Let's be real, I'd throw in some fancy jewelry and probably an extra dress change, but otherwise my wedding would look much like it did. The things that make a wedding truly special don't cost money - it's the people who are there and the vows and ceremony that you create together.

Creating Beauty After Violence

Tuesday April 16, 2013

Dear Readers:

My heart is aching for Boston right now, and I'm sending my love and prayers to all those affected by this horrible tragedy. As a New Yorker who lived through the fear, heartbreak, and and confusion of 9/11, I know how surreal and devastating these days must be. I hope there is healing in your future. Our Go New England website has a list of resources that can help you get information, change travel plans, and find vigils and memorials.

It's times like these that weddings can be an oxymoron. They seem both incredibly frivolous and incredibly important. They're a moment for love and positivity, and for bringing people together. Creating beauty in a harsh world seems more important than ever.

I hope this website - in its own small way - helps you create beauty, bring people together, and find healing.

With love,
Nina Callaway

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