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About heidilynn28

  1. Our cake (tres leches) Last dance. BEWARE: our two Mexican waiters sprayed beer all over the groomsmen and groom before the end of the night. That's why his shirt is soaked! Trash the dress the next morning in the pool. Didn't want to go in the ocean since I had to wear my dress a week after we got home for our AHR! Me and Ariadna View from our balcony, building six, facing the golden pool.. go there if you want peace and quiet Us at El Cafe one evening.. the only ones in the place! Some professional couple pics we got taken the second week we were there. We took the photosession in our Unforgettable package and used them after the wedding. We got 59 edited photos in high-res on a CD included (instead of 36 printed pics with an album). Finally.... some last pics at our at-home reception:
  2. *PIC HEAVY* Hi everybody... here are some non-pro pics from our wedding. I'll only get my professional ones at the end of September!! Getting my hair done at spa. I loved the back... had issues with the front (see next pic)! Family pic right before the ceremony in our room. I wished they could have done something more with the front of my hair! My bridesmaids The boys right before the ceremony Me getting ready to walk down with my dad. I don't have pics of the ceremony on the computer (only videos)! On our way to the beach for pics after the ceremony Pics on the beach with my photographer Our little reception setup Closeup of the tables. The centerpieces were huge! I regret not having a bit more color on the tables though. First course - caesar salad Second course - cream of asparagus soup (amazing!) Beef tenderloin/medallion with potatoes and vegetables Chocolate cinnamon mousse with eggnog cream (amazing as well) See next post for more pics!
  3. Hello everyone! We are finally back from our wedding at the Valentin and finished with our AHR the week after we got back with FI's family. I'll try and review everything.. but if you have any questions, just ask! Arrival & first day: We left Montreal at lunch time on June 26th. We had 4 huge suitcases full, two carry-ons and my wedding dress in our arms. We had upgraded to club class on Air Transat and thank God we did because it allowed us double weight allowance. All in all, we were 1KG under the allowance and were very very lucky. We carried the wedding dress on with us and it fit in the overhead compartment on top of our carry-on bags, no questions asked. We arrived in Cancun at around 4:30pm in a torrential downpour. Our private pick up was waiting for us and we were rushed to the hotel almost 30 minutes before our guests who were on a large tour bus. We were greeted at the hotel with sparkling wine, checked in and were given an upgrade from a silver suite to a golden suite (bldg. 6). LOVED this room, spacious and amazing quiet pool right behind our building. We even had time to bring our suitcases to our room and get a ride back out front to meet our guests arriving on the bus. Everyone got checked in and got to their rooms. The only downside of being upgraded for your wedding was that we were not in the same building as our guests. They were in building 2 and we were in building 6. Sounds close.. but we were really a far walk from the others and found this annoying because we were always running around looking for them (since everyone was close together except for us)! Monday morning we met with our WC Ariadna and went over everything for the wedding which was the next day. Since it was raining and didn't look like it was going to stop, we had a plan A (ceremony, cocktail and reception) and a plan B in case of rain. We brought her a suitcase of decorations (paper lanters, fishline, candles, guestbook frame, decorative crystals for the tables, silk petals for the aisle, monogram letters for cake, etc etc.) and we went over all the options in our wedding package (Unforgettable). We brought down our photographer so she was with us to find out how the wedding day would go so we could work out picture options, etc. Basically, Ariadna is amazing and everything went perfectly. She is on the ball! Rehearsal Supper: We didn't want to pay for a private rehearsal supper so Ariadna reserved us two tables the night before the wedding (it was a Monday). It was Mexican fiesta night and the hotel offers dinner and a Mexican show in the auditorium. Ariadna reserved two tables for my whole wedding group. We met in the lobby bar beforehand and we handed all our guests their OOT bags and them went for dinner and the show. There was tequila tasting and my hubby actually got up on stage and danced.. quite the party! I think it was perfect for a rehearsal supper since we were able to give the guests some verbal information in the lobby bar before dinner and their goodies, and then we got to eat and party afterwards at no extra charge! Wedding day: Woke up, went to breakfast with my girls and mother, and we headed to the spa. I had makeup included in my package but not the hair, but I obviously paid extra to get it done. I loved the back of my hair (pinned up to the side, in a nice curly bun with a white flower clipped in) but I had issues with the front of my hair. I actually broke down crying. I wanted Itzel to do my hair but she was gone on maternity leave. I have a high forehead and thought the girl could have brought my bangs down a bit to hide some of it but it didn't work out. She kept saying my hair was too short (which is a load of bull...) but anyways, my maid of honor helped out and we managed to get it to look ok. I should have gotten a trial run done.. so I would recommend it! The spa has excellent makeup brands (MAC, etc.) but, they suck at applying it. If the makeup is not included in your package, DO NOT spend the big bucks for it. Go to a MAC store, get a trial done there and buy the makeup you will need in Mexico and do it yourself. You'll end up having good quality makeup for yourself and reuse it, instead of relying on someone who more or less knows anything about professional makeup application. I ended up having to do touch ups in my room... Ariadna came to see me in the spa and told me it was sunny out to my surprise. We went ahead and had our ceremony at the gazebo, cocktail hour at the foyer (outside the auditorium hallway) and ended up having our private reception to the side of Le Marche restaurant. I was supposed to have our reception on the Mexican terrace, but we were scared it would have rained.. so we didn't take the chance. Unfortunately, it didn't rain, so we could have done it outside but oh well, what's done is done. Wedding package & details: We booked the unforgettable package. Since I brought down my silk flower bouquet, they credited me the bouquet in the package and applied it to a centerpiece. I had 3 tables at the reception and only paid for 2 centerpieces (50$ each). They were beautiful and I don't regret getting them at all. I was so worried about trying to figure out centerpieces from home, how to get them down there and everything, I'm so glad we decided to get them there. They were huge and had all white roses and other white blooms. We rented the sound system for 4 hours (500$) and hooked up my wedding playlist and my maid of honor took care of the songs playing during the evening. The microphone was handy for speeches and thank yous. The centerpieces, the stereo system and my hair are the only three things I ended up paying extra for the whole wedding. I had given the WC tissue paper puff balls that I had made and they were put on the chairs at the ceremony and all my other decorations were hung and used at the reception. It was great! No complaints, they even used more candles then I gave them. Food: The wedding dinner was sooo good! We chose the caesar salad, the asparagus soup and the beef tenderloin/medallion with potatoes and veggies. I loved everything and so did all my guests. I really had a hard time to eat all my steak since I was so full from everything before. Dessert was the cinnamon chocolate mousse which was to die for. Our cake was beautiful!!! It was a 3-tier tres leches cake and we were even delivered two huge pieces the next morning to our room with coffee right before our trash the dress session. As for the food during the rest of the trip, I wasn't THAT impressed. It was good, but not amazing. We were at the Royal in Playa del Carmen last year and the food was much better. Almost everyone (give or take 3-4 people) got the runs during the week at one point or another. I can't blame it all on the food, it could have been because of drinks and the heat, but the food just got an "ok" from me. OH, by the way, there is no buffet at night available. We found this sort of annoying. Sometimes the restaurants were so full, they'd have over an hour wait. Sometimes you don't want to wait that long so a buffet would have been smart, but there was none, only a-la-carte restaurants. If you want to have a table with the hibachi chef in the Japanese (Ginger) restaurant, be at the door at 6pm and give your name in asap or you'll never get that experience while you're there! It's a room behind closed doors in the Ginger restaurant and they do a little cooking show and you eat a set menu of meat, rice and veggies. Very good, and worth it, but your whole group needs to be there at your reservation time or you will lose it within 5 minutes. Photographer: Since I brought my photographer down with me, I saved my photo session with Blue Lens for the second week we were there and had Ashley take pictures of hubby and I around the hotel grounds for a little over an hour. I had a little white dress on and he put on black pants and his wedding shirt and tie. Mirko met us the next morning in the lobby with about 56 edited pictures ready on a CD. Since I didn't want any printed pictures, he gave us the edited pictures and that was it! We weren't charged for it since it was included in our package (we swaped the printed pictures for the CD and I can print them in any format I want). Overall hotel comments: We were treated very well, the service is excellent pretty well everywhere on the resort. We definitely tipped wayyyy more than we thought we would (leaving 1-2$ at breakfast, 1-2$ at lunch, 3-5$ at dinner, 3-5$ a day for the maid, and then tipped for drinks during the day). It was crazy! I felt bad tipping too much because I knew it was costing a fortune on top of what we paid for the wedding and vacation, but then felt bad because most workers only make 5$ a day!!! I would say, don't go crazy but tipping is sort of expected and necessary in my opinion. Some of my guests tipped a lot, others not that much so it really depends what kind of person you are. The French restaurant was our favourite, but as soon as our waiter found out we spoke French, he was talking French to us all the time (the same 2-3 phrases for two hours...) and that got annoying, even after we switched back to speaking English! haha! But it really wasn't a big deal. We didn't really attend any evenings in the plaza (casino night, bands, shows..) because we we either out on excursions or at Coco Bongo in Playa del Carmen (really cool and worth it at least once!). The Michael Jackson show is great, but the singer needs to improve on his lip syncing! We had a massage at the spa, it was great, very professional and no problems getting that booked, Ariadna did it for us! We had a fruit basket delivered to the room and breakfast in bed the week after the wedding, very good as well. They cleaned my wedding dress for 55$US which was a STEAL.. I was so incredibly happy because it was black black black and turned out pretty well perfect! Final thoughts: If I was to do it all over again, here are some things I'd keep in mind: - I wouldn't have stayed 14 days, ten days would have been plenty. We were twirling our thumbs the last 3-4 days, counting the hours until our flight.. it was just too long at the same resort. We should have changed hotels. - Do makeup myself with good quality products. They're too rushed at the spa (6 girls to do and it was too much in too little time) and have no professional courses for makeup. I'm picky about this, so maybe someone else wouldn't care! - I should have not picked a wedding date in June. It was SO HOT, my guests were sweating bullets dancing, our makeup disappeared as soon as we all sat down to eat at the reception. It must have been about 45 degrees that night. That being said, I'll never go back down south in the summer! - No regrets about bringing my photographer. I will only have my pro pics in September but I already know she'll do an excellent job. I can't say I liked Blue Lens, we paid for pictures with animals we got taken around the resort and the pictures were never developped. I had to email them twice when I got home and they finally sent me the digital prints through email... - Go to Coco Bongo with your friends, it was a blast! We got a deal including transportation to and front the hotel (see Ernesto at pool) for 60$ each! I told them it was my wedding and he shaved 10$ off everyone's entrance fee! We by-passed everyone outside in line and had a VIP booth and open bar. It's worth it to go at least once! - Do an excursion during your week with friends/family. We booked with Yucatreks and did their Tulum & Beyond tour. It was amazing! We had a full day excursion including a visit to Tulum ruins, swimming in two different cenotes, a stop at a private beach spot in Tulum and a beach picnic with BBQ chicken, gucamole, salsa and chips, fruit, etc.! It was the highlite of our week (besides the wedding of course). I guess that's about it. I'll post pictures soon.. I have to organize and upload some of them before posting! Please feel free to ask any questions.. it would be my pleasure. Have a great day everyone!
  4. Hi everybody, Well, I leave tomorrow! I have been in contact with Ariadna this past week.. she's confirmed everything for me, they're making the cake I want, we have a plan B because the weather is terrible down there right now (lots of rain, showers, thundershowers....). We are supposed to have the ceremony at the gazebo, cocktail outside the bar hallway and then our reception outside on the mexican terrace but if it rains, we will have our ceremony in the chapel, cocktail in the el cafe bar and our reception in Le Marché restaurant (private). I'm really not stressed for the rain, except for our pictures.. but what can you do!!!? I will take pictures of everything and post a review and planning thread when I get back.. no time today... I still have to assemble my fan ceremony programs, menus, guestbook card and finish packing!!! Have a great weekend and I'll keep in touch when it's all over!
  5. Beautiful!!! I'm getting excited!! 5.5 weeks to go What went on with the cake? You gave the WC a picture and they did it? Was it 3 milks? Worth it? What package did you have again? Was the centerpiece for the table included? Anything you want to warn us about? How was the hairstylist? How's the weather? Crazy hot? humid? Ahhhh I'm going nuts.. I'll start with that... thanks!!
  6. Darnit!! I wish I would have waited for flip flops until May 21st.. I bought 4 pairs for my girls .. they ended up costing me about 12$, not THAT bad. But I'll get myself a couple pairs and maybe the groomsmen if they're only 1$ WOW. Thanks! I received my mini stainless steel cocktail shakers yesterday!!! I ordered 15 of them from Beaucoup (wedding favor website). They are in California but ship to Canada. I also ordered 24 cocktail infusions (lavendar citrus, 8 per box).. the total with shipping came to 139$. UPS delivered them and I had to pay 20$ duty fees to the UPS guy.. so all that for 160$. Not too bad considering I checked everywhere online for mini cocktail shakers and they were AT LEAST 8$ each plus a ridiculous price for shipping so I'm happy happy! I'm going to guy some ribbon and little cardstock to make name labels for each shaker. I'll probably write my planning thread mid-June so I'll post the link here when the time comes so you can all check out the pics!
  7. heidilynn28

    Is it tacky??

    Kim: I was lucky enough to know a dance teacher from work.. she does medleys and choreographies. I think she'll be charging us about 40$ an hour.. which is fair I think. You can always look up "wedding choreography" or "wedding dance" on the Internet and type in the name of your city.. you'll be able to find something! We've been looking to find an activity to do together and this was the perfect chance so I'm looking forward to learning and have someone to perform in front of.. it probably won't be amazing but it's a little something special we'll keep a surprise for everyone!
  8. heidilynn28

    Is it tacky??

    It's ok Erica!!! I didn't think your comment above was rude.. I just wanted to explain myself and our 'situation'. I wish I could pay for everyone's dinner (if they choose to eat there) but yeah, we've just bought a house and everything but still wanted to have a little something for FI's side of the family + a few close friends who have kids (our hotel is adults-only) or couldn't afford coming. Our condo doesn't have a yard so a BBQ thing (although a great idea) won't work :/ Everyone talks about etiquette and all, I'm trying to stick to it, but I figure.. it's our decision so we might as well go with our budget allows and that's it. We are planning to offer everyone a cocktail and appetizers and we are allowed to bring in a wedding cake so if they don't want a huge dinner, they don't have to take it! Either way, when we officially invite everyone, it will be clear that they will pay for their own, just like at any other restaurant. We started dancing lessons tonight to Edward Maya's Stereo Love song..... and we'll most likely perform it a second time for the AHR! I'm all excited and ready to learn and practice! Anyone else dancing?
  9. heidilynn28

    Is it tacky??

    Well, I understand that inviting peope to dinner and not paying for them might be considered rude, but we are doing a DW to save money. The only reason we're doing an AHR is for my FI's family (since NOBODY is coming to Mexico from his side of the family) and we didn't want to leave them out completely. The private room we reserved in the restaurant only seats 35 people but even so, I certainly don't have the money to pay another 4000$ on food and drink for this dinner (the restaurant is quite pricey but we didn't want to compromise on food and service). We aren't asking for gifts and don't expect any. It's just a moment where we'll all have dinner together and show a short video of our wedding/vacation. Maybe calling it an AHR isn't the right wording! We aren't as fortunate as some other couples where parents offer to pay for food and drink so I like the idea about saying it's a celebration dinner instead. If people are offended that we're not paying for their meal, they can stay home and the people who really want to be there will make an effort.
  10. heidilynn28

    Is it tacky??

    Well! Glad to know I'm not the only one in this situation. We are having an AHR one week after we come back from Mexico. It's going to be in a private room at our favourite restaurant. We're bringing our lanters for decorations, I'm wearing my darn dress again and we'll put up a movie or slideshow of the wedding day for our guests to watch before we eat. We have decided to offer guests a cocktail and mini appetizers as a nice gesture and thank you for coming, but everyone will pay their own meal. I do not have the budget to buy 30-some more favors for everyone... not because I don't want to, but I am giving my wedding guests lots of goodies since they spent so much money to come to our wedding. I think just having the AHR is good enough for those who couldn't make it because we weren't going to have anything at all! Is that ok?
  11. heidilynn28

    Weight watchers for brides of 2011

    Hi girls! I joined WW last year in May.. followed it for a couple of months and lost 12 pounds. Meanwhile, gained it back over the summer and fall.... so I joined again in December. Been following the points plus program since then but I'm have a HARD time. My friend joined at the same time as me and she's almost down 45 pounds and I'm down maybe 15. I am discouraged! For budget issues, I decided to stop the weekly meetings and keep the online program only (including etools) but I am not using it. I get married in Mexico in 9 weeks and my dress is tight ughhhh I would like to lose 10 before June. I think it's do-able but with no mess ups and I have a bachelorette and two wedding showers coming up so I'm petrified! I'm 1 pound short of being under 200 lbs for the first time in about 4 years so that's exciting but I wanted to be below 190 for the wedding. Any yummy recipe ideas from anyone? I tried a good salad the other day: 2 pieces of laughing cow cheese triangles coated with crushed pecans (toast in a frying pan before placing on the salad) 1/2 cup sliced beets (can) Arugula Balsamic and olive oil dressing with salt and pepper All that for 4 points I think! I think I will try and stay low on the carbs for the next couple of weeks to save on points and fill up with protein, yogurt, nuts, fruits and veggies. Nice to finally be able to chat with others and maybe get some new ideas!
  12. Maybe it's just me, but I added a few items in my shopping cart on this website and it says the minimum order is 100$! Might want to check that out..
  13. Wow, glad to know you're all in the same boat as me (us). I had an aunt email me just the other day asking if we were registered somewhere and we're not.. so I had to write back and say that we didn't register anywhere because we didn't think we'd be receiving many wedding gifts since it's a destination wedding. I kindly wrote her that giving us a gift was up to her but not necessary and that money was always appreciated. FI and I have been living together almost 7 years and we don't need anything .. maybe some new decorations but guests can't buy that!! My bridesmaids are throwing me a shower at some point and I've pretty well made it clear that if someone is giving a gift, that money would be more appropriate since it'll help us out regardless. It's such a hot topic I sometimes don't know how to react!
  14. Hey girls! Old Navy has transparent plastic and purple transparent cups with lid and a straw for sale near the checkout counters for 5$ + tx each. I searched high and low for these cups for my OOT bags and would have ended up ordering from discountmugs BUT the shipping was ridiculous. This way, I ended up getting the clear cups for the guys and the purple ones for the girls (purple is one of my wedding colors) so it works out and all for about 125$ (for 23 cups). I'll probably just buy ribbon and tie a business card around each cup to identify what they're for since I don't think clear sticker labels will show up well on the purple cups!
  15. Hi everyone! Getting married on June 28th in Mexico. I found my dress last fall in October and placed the order.. it came in quite fast (mid-February)! It's a Maggie called Cassandra. I am supposed to go in for my first official fitting in three weeks and I'm really nervous and scared because I ordered a size 12 when I probably should have ordered a size 14 (I'm sort of between the two). I would like to lose 10 pounds before the end of June and didn't want to end up paying an arm and a leg for alterations so I went with the smaller size. Now the pressue is ON! I only have a really blurry picture from a cell phone so I'll wait until the beginning of May when I go in for my fitting to post a pic. Anyone else try on a Cassandra or order one?? Just curious.. around how much did everyone pay their Maggies? I ended up getting mine for 1550$ tax inc. I'm in Montreal, Canada so just wondering what the difference in price is between here and the US.