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Everything posted by binzer

  1. I also got a PM about the shoes, so I thought I'd just mention that you can custom order them here. They're super comfy and I still wear them! Also, it's funny to hear someone call any of the photos TTD! It did kind of turn out that way (which is good, b/c I love TTD pictures) but all the photos were taken between the ceremony and the reception, so we had to try our best to not get too soaking wet! Luckily I could hike my dress up, but my hubby didn't do so well
  2. As far as I'm concerned, Costa Rica is the best place ever! It really is the perfect combination of beauty, people, weather, and culture. It's a great spot for a wedding because it's very safe (good for nervous guests) and the people are generally so friendly and accommodating that it's quite easy to organize a wedding (and deal with any hiccups that occur while you're there...such as cancelled flights and lost luggage :S). I spent 7 months sailing around the South Pacific (Mexico, Costa Rica, Galapagos, French Polynesia, Hawaii) and when I got engaged I didn't even hesitate before picking CR. The big day is over now, and definitely zero regrets! Here are some photos on my photographer's blog, or you can see a lot more of her photos here. Good luck, and feel free to ask lots of questions!
  3. I just got married in May at Rancho Pacifico, and although it's not right on the beach, it's AMAZING. It's up in the rainforest overlooking the ocean, and the sounds and the environment are incredible. It is extremely non-commercial, but very luxury without being ostentatious. The staff knew all our names (we came to know theirs very quickly) and it felt very comfortable and homey, while still supplying 5-star service and ammenities (they'd bake us cookies and appetizers all the time too!). It won't really work if you want a big wedding, but we only had 20 people and had the entire resort to ourselves (they agreed not to book the few extra rooms left over). You can see a few of my wedding photos here Btw, what time of year are you wanting to get married, and how many people? Number of people will definitely help determine your options!
  4. It kept getting pushed to the bottom of my to-do list, but I'm finally posting my Costa Rica wedding photos! My fantabulous photographer was Julie Comfort, and I really feel like I can't say enough good things about her to do her justice. I couldn't be happier with the photos (my husband and I usually hate photos of ourselves) and she was an absolute pleasure to work with (I got many positive comments about her from my guests too). She helped me with plenty of non-photography related questions I had (I didn't use a WC, so I really appreciated it!). Even two months after the wedding I still email her about stuff and she usually responds within minutes! I never feel imposing and the whole experience has been filled with friendliness and as easy for me as I can imagine. I would highly highly recommend her if you plan on getting married anywhere in Costa Rica (which I also highly recommend!). She drove across the country to do my wedding and gave me a great deal (best money we've ever spent). I'm a bit nit-picky about art and photography, and she captured exactly what we wanted. Anyways...on to the photos, which I think speak for themselves! I was originally going to add all my favorites right into the thread, but it was taking way too long so I'll give you guys a couple options. You can go to Julie's blog here and see a few of her favorites (about 30 photos) or go to my flickr set here (about 400 of her photos that I uploaded). The slideshow version is here. These haven't been retouched, in case you're wondering! We got married near Uvita at a great little boutique hotel called Rancho Pacifico, and the awesome beach in the photos is called Playa Ventanas. It was the perfect day Enjoy!
  5. Can't remember if it's been mentioned, but "Daddy's Angel" is a pretty perfect country song. Also, for those looking for a song from the daughter's point of view, there's a song called "It's for My Dad" by Nancy Sinatra (it starts a bit slow, but gets much more dance-able after the intro). Still don't know what I'm picking, and the wedding is in a week!
  6. Quote: Originally Posted by mummergirl do what you want and don't ever worry about it being weird! there are no hard and fast rules for a DW, and even if there were, *your* wedding should be whatever *you* want it to be! i have a way formal dress for a beach wedding (some might say too formal, but i don't care because "beachy" dresses didn't make me feel like a bride). on the other hand, we're using our ipod docking station instead of a dj or band ... totally casual. keep in mind everyone will be on vacation, having a great time, likely drinking their *sses off, LOL! and for most, it will be their first time at a DW. they don't know what to expect ... so surprise them! that's true! I tend to be overly paranoid, but if I imagine my wedding as someone else's wedding, I don't think any of it is weird! At any rate, you gave me the little bit of encouragement I needed to successfully axe my insecurity
  7. I wasn't really planning on being introduced when we enter (since the wedding is only 20 people and lowkey). Is it weird to arrive at the cocktail hour, say hi to everyone, and then just randomly be like "ok, first dance time!" I'm trying to walk a fine balance between keeping it organized and casual, but not suddenly formal at weird times :S I already feel weird enough that we're waltzing at a beach wedding!
  8. mummergirl's setup sounds perfect! My extremely outgoing sister is the MoH and would be perfect for announcing it, so I'm going to copy the plan exactly!
  9. I know I saw a thread about this a long time ago, but I can't find it :S (I've found similar ones, but not the one I remember). Anyways, I need to have my dance before the dinner since my photographer will be leaving shortly after the dinner begins. For part of the cocktail hour my FI and I will be getting photos done, so should we do the FD when we arrive, at the end of the cocktail hour, or what? Our band won't be arriving until near the end of dinner (when the real dancing will begin) and we'll be using an ipod for dinner/cocktail hour. Also, how should we transition into it? It's fairly casual (only 20 people) and we don't have an MC or anything. After the dance, how should we transition OUT of it? Should I do the daughter/father dance then too? Suggestions and past experience would be appreciated!! TIY
  10. For all you ladies looking into portable systems, I wanted to suggest a cheaper version, the Altec Lansing InMotion iM7 (we just bought one). According to all the reviews my FI and I have looked at, it's actually quite a bit better sounding than the Bose (not that Bose is bad) and it's only $150! It's discontinued because there's a new model out now, but the new model doesn't sound as good because they decided to sacrifice quality for size. The only downside with the iM7 is that I think it may be a bit heavier than the Bose (not 100% sure). It sounds great though, and I actually even read a review where someone tested it on the beach with no problems or distortion (yay). Anyways, GL! For me, the hardest part is picking the songs ><
  11. Is anyone else starting to feel nervous constantly? I'm not nervous about the getting married part...there's just still so much to do!! More OOT stuff to buy, things to order, dresses to find, jewelry to make, guestbook pages to design, songs to organize...and only 3 weeks! I can't stop being all a-flutter!
  12. Quote: Originally Posted by janineg That's the only complaint I've heard so far from family is that they've heard the flight is bad, but whatever - I'm really excited!!! I totally think it's worth it!! I'm hoping maybe next year we can travel down and do a site visit to see what it's like down there. Binzer- do you know what the cost is for the paradisus from Canada? I'm trying to keep the cost below $2000.00 a week (or at $2000.00) including the flight. Thanks again everyone!!!! Sorry, no idea! It was 11 years ago and we went there on a time share my family had (not to mention that the hotel was under different ownership then). I think it's at least $500/night, although most hotels will give good group discounts, especially if you're having a wedding with them.
  13. Quote: Originally Posted by janineg Thank you so much for the information! Do any of you live in Canada? I've heard the flight is not very fun. Also-do you have any idea how much an average AI week is at the Paradisus? I'm from Canada, and it's not toooo bad a flight. If I remember correctly it's about 8 hours broken into two 4 hour pieces. The stop-over is usually in Dallas, and if you're really adverse to long flights you could always stay the night there. Regardless, it's worth it!
  14. I stayed at the Paradisius about 11 years ago (before it was a Paradisius) and the beach really is fantastic. I think if you want a big all-inclusive resort it's a great option, although I do think it's a good idea to look at other options too. CR is practically the land of the fabulous boutique hotel, and there are a lot of really neat places to go for a very personalized experience
  15. I think these threads need to have an official rule about posting where you got them from! I have been looking for months and STILL no dress
  16. I found this link here and thought it might be helpful. It's for a different spot, but it lays down all the "rules" for having a catholic wedding in Jamaica. It requires a bit of work, but it may actually be good for your dealings with your parents since it requires you to work with your priest back home. I think a Jamaican WC is probably your best resource right now (outside of ROR if ROR can't accommodate Catholic weddings). Or, as others have said, you can have two ceremonies. Whatever you decide, don't worry, your parents will show up! Especially initially your parents may be resistant or complain (because they're hoping they can change your mind) but once you have your plans in motion I'm sure they'll come around (at least enough to keep you from going crazy). GL!
  17. For those who didn't plan any speeches (which is what we're doing) did you still make your own little toast and thank everyone for coming? If so, when? My fiance and I are definitely going to do something, but neither of us are public speakers and we're wondering what others have done. I was also considering having my dad welcome and thank everyone at the start of dinner, in which case I'm wondering if my FI and I should do something different, like a toast to our parents.
  18. I did some googling and found a couple more options a bit closer to SJO airport (they're both about 20 minutes away, which isn't it a lot better than 30 ). The first is Finca Rosa Blanca and it's also a coffee plantation. It has 13 rooms, and all of them are unique (I like that). The other is Xandari Resort and Spa. The website isn't as detailed, but it has 22 rooms and seems pretty nice. Both places are pretty pricey (more than I would normally spend, especially since there are lots of nice cheap hotels in CR) but I figure it's the last night of our wedding-moon, so its ok to splurge. Anyone been to either of those places or have any alternate suggestions?
  19. Unfortunately I have never stayed at a hotel in Mal Pais yet, even though it's my top destination! I've been to some of the beaches there years ago (I spent two months on a schooner along the Pacific coast of CR) but tbh, the details are all very hazy! If you get a chance when you're going by, I recommend going to Curu Wildlife Refuge (particularly if you like hiking/walking, birds and monkeys). Besides the hundreds of monkeys throughout the refuge, there's also one very sweet monkey named Oscar who had his tail ripped off by the other monkeys (after his mom got electrocuted and he was shunned). He's pretty friendly with the tourists since he had to become partially tame to survive. Me and my fiance are also trying to figure out where to stay the night before we leave. Beacon Escazu looks like a decent option, although a little closer would be nice. We just don't want the last night to be a "throwaway" night with zero romance or atmosphere! I remember finding a good spot a few months ago, but for the life of me I can't find it again :S I'm going to look some more and I'll post back.
  20. Quote: Originally Posted by Ask.CostaRica I'm not a bride but want to give you some advice: 1st: Rancho Pacifico is way up the mountain, amazing view just make sure you plan for an earlier ceremony (leaving the hotel by 3pm) to get to the beach by 3:30/3:45. A good spot for you wedding is Dominicalito beach, good even in a very high tide (15min away -North once you get down from the mountain). Of the last wedding I heard of there, the hotel lawyer did not turn off his cel phone, make sure he leaves it in his car (it went off in the ceremony - has a hard time parting with it). Stick to Arenas del Mar, it has everything MA offers; amazing views and private beach (rock barriers on both sides make it private). Malpais is not that far really, from MA to the Ferry you are 2.5 hrs from the Ferry of Punatrenas (which now sticks to schedule) and from there you are another hour to MP. Look into Red Palm Villas in MP, I was just there - simply beautiful, self contained villas right on the beach. thanks for the tips! If we had even just one more day we'd be more inclined to head to Mal Pais, but since we have only have a few days completely to ourselves we don't want to spend minimal time in the car. We'll probably go on an anniversary trip back to CR in the next couple years though, and Mal Pais is where we'll be headed! Do you have any advice on where to stay the night before we fly out? We have an early flight so we don't want it to be tooo far from the SJO airport, but we'd also like something somewhat romantic and secluded. TIY! Any more CR brides out there?
  21. Someone already mentioned Rancho Pacifico, and although I've never been there, I AM having my wedding there in less than a month, so I'll let you know how it goes! After a week at RP we're going to Issimo Suites in Manuel Antonio for a few days, and I think it's going to be really nice (quieter and more private than the other places in Manuel Antonio). If you want to go up North, I would recommend the Mal Pais area since a lot of Guanacaste is getting pretty touristy and busy. I chose to get married at Rancho Pacifico because I wanted a quieter more "untouched" area, not to mention that I love the rainforest! I also like that it's fairly luxurious (double showers, small private pools) but not phony or ostentatious. We can also still make easy daytrips to the beach, and do any activities we want (horseback ride, atv tours, zipline, scuba, raft, etc etc). Do you have a nightly budget in mind, and what amenities are important to you? What activities are at the top of your list? Anyways, tripadvisor is your friend! Make sure to read through the individual reviews since a lot of the time the top ranked hotels are not necessarily the best! Also, the Galapagos islands are awesome, so go if you can! The amount of wildlife really is ridiculous...it's just like on tv. I went when I was working on a sailboat, so I'm not really sure how to get there as a regular tourist :S My guess is, it's very expensive!
  22. I like to like to saute minced garlic in some olive oil, and then I dip chicken breasts into the oil, so I can then dip them into a 50/50 mix of bread crumbs and pecorino romano (you can use parmesan instead). I then just cover and bake at 425 for 30 minutes (you can add spices to the bread crumb and cheese mix if you like). For really quick chicken I just sprinkle a bunch of garlic powder and seasoning salt on chicken breasts, and then cook them in a pan on on the stovetop (this is also lower calorie). Usually I make this chicken when we're just having big salads for dinner (I like to also put in hard boiled egg, strawberries, walnuts or pecans, dried cranberries, apple, croutons, goat cheese, and some balsalmic dressing). I also really like to make chicken stir-fries with authentic teriyaki sauce (made with mirin, sake, and soy sauce) but that's enough for now!
  23. Quote: Originally Posted by cdnvb9 I'll be wearing one of these two.. I have until december to decide which exact one! where are these from? That's the kind of style I've been looking for...unsuccessfully!
  24. I would go to Dance Forums and ask for advice. I had never posted there before and asked for first dance help, and everyone was super helpful! They listened to songs for me and told me exactly what styles would work My fiance and I are doing a waltz to Come Away With Me by Norah Jones, and although I know someone said she's doing a waltz to your song, I don't see how it could work. It's not in 3/4 time, and it's too fast, but I guess with choreography you can do almost anything. Some of the other suggestions will probably fit perfectly though!
  25. I just wanted to update and let you guys know that these classes work like crazy! For a few weeks I've been doing pilates about 5 days a week (one day I do the Bride to Be workout, and the next day I do two 15 minute workouts: stomach/arms and butt/back). I haven't worked out at all since I was a teenager, and I'm already starting to get very toned abs and my posture is improving drastically. Six pack here I come!
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