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Everything posted by raisinblur

  1. Thanks for a great post. Very helpful. I googled and ended up downloading this: Free PDF Creator - Convert to PDF from Any File You Can Print - PrimoPDF It got good reviews, works great and is free! After you install it, the program automatically shows up as a printer option, so just open the file you want to PDF, select the PDF maker as your printer, and voila, you'd got your PDF.
  2. Just started playing around with Lumapix recently (trial version) and it seems like a great piece of software. Can't wait to start designing our photobook with it. But I too was wondering about what margin to allow on each page, if I plan to upload it snapfish? (I was also considering My Publisher, since I've read good reviews on that.) It might be better to err on the side of having a thinner margin (1/8"?), and allowing part of the edge to be cut off, as opposed to having a margin show. It may also depend on how many pages you have in your book. Any advice on this? Also, I read a great detailed review for Lumapix Fotofusion here: Gorgeous Photo Layouts with LumaPix's FotoFusion v4 - Thoughts Media Forums But I'm totally confused about what he says about PPI/DPI with the Essentials version. I tried to google this topic, but got even more confused. All I want to know is, if I just get the Essentials version, will I be able to print a good quality 12x12 photobook? The article says I will only get 166ppi on a 12x12 print which doesn't seem so great. But I've also read other articles that say ppi doesn't matter. Please help... I don't want to shell out $120 for the Enhanced version.
  3. Wow... beautiful pics! You guys make a gorgeous couple. And I loved the shape of your dress. Do tell.. who was the photog?
  4. Thanks for all the nice comments! I can't stop staring at my pics... is that normal?! LOL. I was going to just do a quick photobook on snapfish, but after looking at all the stuff Morgan is doing with her pics, my photobook is starting to feel a little inadequate. So I'm starting all over with that. Probably going to buy Lumipix fotofusion and play around with it to see what I can come up with. Quote: Originally Posted by tvt Those are great pictures! I love LC wedding pics! I love the one of the bridal party on the rocks with the ocean behind, awesome! I never get tired of seeing LC pics either! And I LOVE the one with our party on the rocks too. My poor sisters had to climb and stand on those rocks barefoot though, and they had lots of sharp bits. I just told them to suck it up and smile. LOL. No one got hurt so it was all good. Looking back on it, I totally wish we had done a TTD too.
  5. Hi LC gals, I've finally posted my pro-pics by Elizabeth Lloyd. I loved the way they turned out; I wouldn't hesitate to recommend Beth if anyone is still looking for a photog. http://bestdestinationwedding.com/fo...191#post484183
  6. Ok, that's the last of the ones I'm going to post here. It was so hard choosing my favorites; there were so many to choose from! Hope you gals liked them, and if you have any questions about Beth, please feel free to PM me.
  7. Here are our pro-pics by Elizabeth Lloyd from our LC wedding, May 24. Beth was so easy to work with; we had an absolute blast. And I love love love all our pictures. I would recommend her in a heartbeat. The only negative thing I can say about her was that it took about 6 weeks for her send the photos, which seemed like an eternity. But, in the end, it was worth the wait. We got about 900 pictures on a DVD (plus another 900 duplicates in black & white). I managed to whittle them down to about 600 which I uploaded onto snapfish. You can see them all here: Snapfish: Share:Registration_Opt2 Here are some of our absolute favorites (in case you don't feel like going through all 600 pics...) The Details
  8. Welcome back! I love all the pics at the hotel pool and beach. I feel like I was reliving my stay as the Royal Decameron again! (Especially when I saw that dancer guy with the neon green/orange skirt and blond wig, ha! He was running around during our welcome dinner too!) Anyway, you looked gorgeous in your gown and the wedding seemed like a lot of fun. Loved, loved your sunset pics too.
  9. I think PVadventures uses several photogs and stylists, so it all depends on who Nicole recommends for you. (May depend on who's available on your wedding date also.) My hair/make-up was done by Fernando from Stylo Estetica. He has a salon in Bucerias (in NV). I think Kelley recommended him because I wanted to do a trial, and my hotel was very close to his salon. (If you want to do a trial and are staying far from Bucerias, this may not be an ideal match.) But I was very happy with the way my hair/make-up turned out. I think he did a great job. His English is not great though, so it may help to brush up on some Spanish. And he showed up to LC about 30 minutes later than he was suppose to. He called Kelley to let her know, and she let me know, so I wasn't stressed about it. But if this sort of thing would get you stressed out, you may want someone else. As for photography, I also used Elizabeth Lloyd and I thought she was great to work with. She was reasonably priced for our wedding, but she may have increased her rates since then. I haven't gotten the pro-pics back from her yet (she said she mailed them today!), but I did an engagement session with her, and I would definitely recommend her.
  10. I found these threads that may also help: http://bestdestinationwedding.com/forum/t1728 http://bestdestinationwedding.com/forum/t12963
  11. Cole5worm just got married there this past weekend. Hopefully she'll come back to write a review and post lots of pics. I didn't get married there, but we did stay there during our wedding week. Here's my review with a link to photos of the complex: http://bestdestinationwedding.com/forum/t23548 Good luck!
  12. Yes, super cute! And practical too, since they can wear them again. I agree with Rachel, I don't think the wind will be too much of a factor.
  13. Hair/make-up Review, Fernando of Stylo Estetica in Bucerias I had a local PV stylist come over to LC to do my hair and make-up. Kelley recommended him to me. It worked out great because his salon was about a 5 minute cab ride from our hotel, which was convenient because I had to go to his salon for my trial the day before the wedding. To be honest, after the trial, I was a little nervous because I was not crazy about how my hair or make-up turned out. My hair looked a little bit sloppy, and my curls flattened in like, an hour. My make-up was ok. And I had a hard time communicating with him, because he only spoke a little bit of English, and my Spanish is pretty much non-existent (even after 3 years of Spanish in HS!). But… day of the wedding, I ended up being really happy with the way my hair and make-up turned out. I think he was just a lot more careful because he was doing it “for real”. The lighting in the LC casita was also much better than in his salon, so I think that helped too. (Natural light at LC vs the artificial lights in his salon.) I didn’t look too made-up, which was exactly what I was going for. Be warned about the humidity though! My hair is very straight, thick and heavy and with the humidity and everything, my curls got flat by the end of the night. I think it still looked ok, but I would have liked it to stay more curly. Fernando said that he used a really strong hair spray to get my curls to stay longer, and it helped a little. But with my hair being so thick and heavy, I don’t think there was anything Fernando or I could have done, except maybe pick a different hair style (like an all updo). So you may want to consider that. Or I could have tested more hair products beforehand to make sure they would hold up in very humid weather. That being said, I was still very satisfied with Fernando’s work and very glad I ended up hiring someone to do my hair and make-up. I was considering having one of my sisters do it (not pros at all), or doing it myself. In the end, I’m so glad I let a professional take care of it. The extra money was well spent to relieve the stress on that day, and it could have been a total disaster if I had to do it on my own. Another thing to consider is if your future hubby has oily or shiny skin, you may want to think about having him wear some powder. I know it sounds kind of weird to put make-up on a guy (and he might object), but I think it would make a big difference in the pictures. We only realized this after I looked through all the pictures and noticed the “glow” on DH’s face. :-) Not a huge deal, but definitely something we would have done if we had known beforehand.
  14. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that the hotel uses small little plastic cups for the drinks, so definitely bring your own travel mug. And also bring some floaties for the pool. You can inflate them in the gift shop for a dollar each (which is a rip-off, quite honestly, but I guess it's just a dollar). We brought a bunch for our guests and we all put them to good use at the pools.
  15. We got married at Las Caletas and not at the hotel. But you can see wedding pics here (link at bottom of first post): http://bestdestinationwedding.com/forum/t23542 Coleworm, don't worry, you won't regret booking at the Decameron. We still had a ton of fun, despite the little things here and there.
  16. Thanks for all the nice comments! I did have a stylist come to LC to do my hair. I will post a more complete review later tonight. Here's my review of our hotel: http://bestdestinationwedding.com/forum/t23548 As for the sea sickness... yeah, it kind of sucked for our guests, but they still had an awesome time. They couldn't stop raving about the wedding as a whole, so I wouldn't let that keep you from having an LC wedding. Lots of LC brides have also said the boat ride was super smooth. So it's just a matter of luck with the weather. My guess is, if you avoid a wedding during the summer months (like during May - October), the boat ride will be a lot smoother. I'll definitely post our pro-pics once we get them.
  17. Royal Decameron Hotel & Resort DH and I stayed at the Decameron from May 21 – May 28 for our wedding at Las Caletas on May 24. All of our 50 guests also stayed here. It located in Nuevo Vallarta, close to the town of Bucerias. It's about 20 minutes north of the airport, 40 minutes north of downtown PV. Overall, we were very satisfied with the hotel. At about $55/person/night for an all-inclusive, it was about the best deal we could get. The hotel is definitely on the “budget” or “value” side, but it totally met the needs of all our guests. DH and I had to pay for 9 family members, as well as the 2 of us, so cost was definitely the biggest consideration for us. And we knew some of our friends were on a tight budget too, so we wanted things to be affordable for everyone. The beach by the resort was nice and sandy, perfect for sunbathing, swimming, kayaking and boogie boarding. (The resort provides kayaks and boogie boards for guests to use.) There are also plenty of beach chairs under palapas for lounging. No one ever had any issues with getting a beach chair any time of day. There were also plenty of lounge chairs by the pools. We liked the adult pool the best. There were lots of families with young kids vacationing there; also, a lot of locals. The resort was pretty big, so it was great for my dad who likes to just walk around. The grounds are kept very clean, with nice green grass and pretty flowers. The buildings are also vibrantly colored. We always saw hotel workers cleaning or painting. The rooms were pretty basic, but clean and comfortable. No one spent that much time in their rooms anyway, except to shower and sleep. To that end, there was plenty of hot water whenever I showered and the beds were very comfortable. There’s an AC in every room. But if you want to use the room safe, you have to pay $2 per day. Now for the things we did not like about the hotel: The food – the food was just ok. We all got tired of the food at the buffets after a day or two. It all kind of tasted the same after a while. The food wasn’t bad. It just wasn’t great. However, the two a-la-carte places we tried, Rodizio Grill and Piccolo, were pretty good. It was just annoying that we had to wake up really early (8am) in order to make reservations at those restaurants. And at night, the restaurants would sit half empty because people don’t show up for their reservations. If you had a party of more than 6, they would make you sit in different tables, instead of pushing tables together for you, which was annoying. One more thing, don’t order the steak from Piccolo. We went with 2 friends who both ordered their steaks “medium rare” and they both came completely well done. They weren’t even pink in the middle. But I had risotto and DH had a pasta dish, both of which were good. The red wristbands – ugh, the horror of the red wristbands. We had to wear our red plastic wristbands the whole time. Of course, I made our bridal party cut off the wristbands for the wedding, but a lot of the other guests kept their wristbands on during the wedding. I didn’t want to make everyone cut it off, because then I would risk having some people lose theirs, and then have to deal with the hotel to get them another one, and convince them not to charge us for it. (The hotel said they charge $45 for each lost wristband.) So I just let people keep them on. So in our wedding photos, we see a lot of red wristbands. I was so so annoyed. But what can you do. It’ll just be another thing to remember our trip and wedding by. No night swimming and no hot tubs – A friend of ours actually jumped into the pool at night after a few too many tequila shots. It was hilarious. But security quickly came and told him to get out. It would have been fun to do some swimming at night and relax in a hot tub. Hotel taxis ripped us off – Not sure if this is normal for all hotels, but our hotel taxis totally overcharged us. One afternoon, we had a big group and we took 2 taxi vans to downtown. We agreed to a charge of $42 for each van. But when we arrived, our driver insisted on a charge of $48. We had no choice but to pay him, and we paid him tip on top of that too. Then we learned that the other taxi driver charged $60. wth? And on the way back, we found a taxi van that only charged us $35 to get back to the hotel. We were so mad. I would recommend just taking the bus to downtown. It’s only $2 per person. Not the most comfortable ride, but an adventure all by itself. Another thing about the taxis. We had an unfortunate incident with the taxi drivers that made me even more mad. We arranged for airport transfers to/from the hotel when we booked our travel through our TA. On Tuesday, we had a smallish group leaving for the airport, and a big tour bus came to pick them up from the hotel. As the bus was trying to leave the hotel, the hotel taxi drivers blocked the drive-way and prevented the bus from leaving the hotel. We had no idea what was going on. Apparently, the taxi drivers have a deal with the hotel or the travel agencies which says that for groups less than 15 people (even though we had exactly 15 people), they must ride in their taxis, not on an outside tour bus. The guests wouldn’t have to pay the taxis for the trip, since they already paid the travel agency, but then the travel agency is suppose to pay the taxis what the guests paid them, and they would get the tip for doing the actual driving as well. So basically, the taxi drivers wanted everyone to get off the bus and ride in their taxis, so they could get paid. Our group absolutely refused to do this. (They had already loaded all their luggage on the bus, and honestly, the bus would be a much more comfortable ride.) Then a 30-minute stand-off ensued, with us yelling at the taxi drivers to let the bus through, and they were just standing there blocking the way. Long story short, there was a guy there (who doesn’t even work for the hotel or our travel agency), who was able broker a deal between all parties. I’m not even sure exactly what happened, but after another 15 minutes, the taxi drivers walked aside and the bus was able to leave. We were so mad at the taxi drivers, because first of all, they had ripped us off (see above) before. And also, we had the required 15 people on the bus. And we had a group of 52 people stay at the hotel and people took taxis into downtown every single day. I know it may not be entirely their fault, especially if they did have a deal with the hotel or travel agency, and it wasn’t being upheld. But still, it just was not pleasant having to deal with them and feeling cheated the whole time. In the end, everyone made it to the airport safely and on time, so I’m thankful for that at least. Ok, I know I’ve gone off on all the things I don’t like about the hotel, but honestly, it’s a nice place. Considering all of our circumstances and budget constraints, if I had to do it all over again, I would still choose to stay here. It’s a great value for your money. The beach is beautiful. There’s a small spa with cheap massages. There are tennis courts and bikes for guests to use. And a nightly show that my parents really enjoyed. However, if we were to go back to PV with just DH and I, we would probably spend a little more money and stay at a nicer resort. Hope that helps! Also, the first half of this photo album has lots of pictures of the resort. All the iguana pictures and after are not of the hotel. Kodakgallery.com*Join now and receive beautiful photographic prints from your camera
  18. I finally wrote my LC wedding review! http://bestdestinationwedding.com/fo...542#post431652
  19. Here's my long overdue (and just plain long) review of our Las Caletas wedding on Saturday, May 24, 2008. Las Caletas Wedding, Kelley as WC DH and I had a fabulous time at LC. It's just a beautiful place. I totally trusted Kelley to take care of everything for me, so all I needed to do was relax and enjoy the day. So let's start from the beginning. I got a cold like a week before the wedding. I couldn't believe it because I hadn't gotten sick in years, and of course I get sick a few days before our wedding. I think all the stress and nerves were getting to me and weakened my immune system. Luckily, the worse of it was over by the wedding day, and I think maybe the excitement of everything helped me get through the day. At least I was able to eat, drink, and dance the night away with no problems. The night before the wedding, DH and I could not sleep at all we were so nervous. We kind of threw tradition out the window, and decided to stay in the same room the night before and he also came with me and my BMs to LC in the morning and hung out with us all day. And he got to see me in my dress before the ceremony. I don't regret this at all because it was nice to have his support the whole time, and I just felt calmer with him there. And I was glad to share the entire experience with him. So the 6 of us (me, DH, 2 bm's and 2 of DH's friends) rode out to LC that morning. We didn't do a site visit beforehand, so the 6 of us went with no additional charges. I met with Kelley 2 days before the wedding at our hotel to go over the final seating chart, and other details. I thought it was fine not doing a site visit since I had read so much info on LC (thanks, LC brides!) that I knew pretty much what to expect, and wanted to experience it for the first time on the big day. And we didn't want to spend time away from our guests anyway. The morning boat ride was pretty smooth, except for the last 20 minutes or so, when it started to get rough. I occasionally get sea-sick, but I was totally fine this time. My sister (a BM), however, got really sick and threw up several times. But the crew was so nice to us, especially Nicole who met us in the morning, giving us water, ice, clean barf bags (gross, I know) and always asking if we needed anything. They all took care of us so well. But, we were happy to finally touch land again. The bridal casita was so cute. Smaller than I thought it would be, but still very comfortable (might start to feel pretty cramped with more than 6 people though). One sister and I had a massage. Another went snorkeling (she yelled at me for not telling her there would be a yoga class, because she didn't know to bring her yoga pants). DH took a 2-hour nap. His friends also took short naps in the hammocks outside, and otherwise just wandered around. We lounged in the Jacuzzi for a while. Everyone said it was so beautiful and relaxing, and I totally agreed. It was a great way to spend a wedding morning. Then we went to eat lunch, which was soooo delicious. BBQ ribs and paella and the best lemonade ever. It was sooo good. I was hoping they would have the exact same food for dinner. (They didn't, but dinner was still very yummy!). Then Kelley came and we did a walk-through with her. Basically, she showed us where the ceremony and dinner would be set up, and where we'd be walking, etc. The whole time, I felt very confident that Kelley had everything under control, and she did. It was nice not having to worry about anything. Elizabeth Lloyd, our photog, came around lunch time but didn’t start taking pictures till later, around 3. Fernando, the stylist Kelley had recommended, came and did my hair and make-up at around 3. Everyone around me starts getting dressed, cleaning, packing up the suite, etc. And then Kelley starts giving me these play-by-plays every 15 minutes, like, “ok, your guests are now at the port waiting to get on the boat… ok, your guests are now on the boat, the waters are very rough… ok, your guests will be here in 20 minutes… your guests are here! etc. etc..†At this point, everything just becomes a big blur to me. It’s like, everything was happening all around me and people are just telling me what I need to do, cuz I have no idea. It’s the weirdest feeling, but I just went with the flow and everything miraculously fell into place… all our stuff got packed and moved to where they needed to be, everyone arrived safely and on time, I got to where I needed to be on time. Kelley just worked her magic. So about the afternoon boat ride. All our guests told us that it was very choppy. And from our wedding video, we could see how windy and rocky it was. The boat crew made everyone take Dramamine before the ride, but a few people still got sick, including DH’s sister, who threw up several times. We also had guests who sat close to the boat’s edge and they got soaked by water that splashed up on them. I feel bad for them, but it’s the weather, so what can you do? Everyone still had a blast despite the bumpy ride, but a lot of them told us they didn’t go so crazy with the alcohol because they were scared of the boat ride back. But Kelley assured us that the boat ride home would be much smoother, which luckily turned out to be true. The ceremony went smoothly. But the microphone kept cutting out because it was so windy. Our guests said they couldn’t hear much of what we said, but that’s ok. The waves were crashing very loudly, so even if the microphone did work, they would have had a hard time hearing us anyway. Everyone said it was a gorgeous setting though, and my sister said it looked straight out of a wedding magazine. Dinner was also delicious, although I didn’t eat that much. With everything going on, it’s hard to chow down no matter how good the food is. The only thing I was kind of disappointed with was the cake. It tasted fine, but I had wanted chocolate with a strawberry fruit filling. Instead, it was a cinnamon spice cake with a jam filling. Again, with everything going on, I didn’t even notice that it wasn’t chocolate when we did the cake cutting. And in the grand scheme of things, it totally wasn’t a big deal. But if I had to do it over again, I would probably just skip the cake altogether, and save ourselves a few hundred dollars. The rest of the night went by way too fast. We danced the night away. The firedancers are amazing… and boy, does it get hot when they get close to you. Definitely worth every penny. And on the boat ride home, it took a while for people to let loose again, because they were so worried about whether the ride would be choppy or not. But after some friends and I started that conga line, people started partying again, haha. And luckily no one got sick. All in all, it was just an unforgettable day. Coming up in the next few days (I hope)… reviews of our hotel (Royal Decameron), Fernando the stylist (wish I knew his last name), and Elizabeth Lloyd the photog (and her assistant Nathan), and various excursions we went on. Oh yeah, how could I forget. Here’s a link to some of our non-pro pics. There are over 200 pics so make sure you have more than a few minutes to spare before getting started! Kodakgallery.com*Join now and receive beautiful photographic prints from your camera
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