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What I would and wouldn't do again...

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Yes...I sure do!!!

 

Things I would do again (besides marrying my best friend and true love!):

 

1) Stay a second week at the resort on our own.  

OHHHH YES, DO IT!!!  That first week with everyone was so busy...if I had had to leave with everyone else I would have been miserable.  Honestly, that first week was no holiday for me! 

 

2) Get a bit of a "base" before I left for the tropics.

I had never tried a tanning bed before, but after seeing a friend's wedding pics (she's fair like me...and had some bad tan lines which I also knew I had...eeeep...no thanks!!!) I decided it was time to try it out.  I started three months before the wedding...didn't do it to "tan" but just to get a hint of colour and even everything out.  It was slow and controlled...never a burn...just 2 or 3 times a week.  No one ever commented before I left or asked "have you been tanning???" which was good.  I got a tiny bit more colour before the wedding when we were on the resort, but I'm super happy with my skin colour (i.e., lack of tan lines in my strapless dress!) in our photos.  

 

3) Beg my FI and his daughter to NOT get sunburned before the wedding.  They listened...enough said.

 

4) Hand out the wedding week survival (OOT) bags ahead of time, but save a few special things to give out at the resort.  We had so much stuff to take with us, there was NO WAY I was dragging all of that other stuff down.

http://www.bestdestinationwedding.com/t/76768/mjkh-wedding-week-survival-bags-are-done-lots-of-pics

 

5) Use 3 large (72L) Rubbermaid containers (sealed well with packing tape!) to transport our wedding stuff down to Mexico.  The airline didn't charge us for the excess luggage...the totes were super sturdy and cheap ($3.99 on sale) and we just left them behind.

 

6) Arrive at the airport well before everyone else (almost 3 hours) to get rid of all the luggage and be free and breezy to greet and help our guests as they arrived!

 

7) My FI was happy that we spent a bit of extra money for private vans (USA Transfers) to transfer us from the airport to the resort, rather than using the transfers included with our Sunquest packages.  We got to the resort quickly and didn't have to make X-number of stops on the way down to drop people off at other resorts.

 

8) Have a Mexican trio or Mariachi play during the cocktail hour when we returned from our photos. One of our favourite memories of the wedding day is making our way back to the reception after photos and finding three large Mexican men all dressed up, getting out of their 20 year old white Chrysler sedan in the parking lot, straightening themselves out and putting on their hats.  They actually played us back on to the beach...their timing was perfect!!!  It was sooooo fun and festive!!!

 

9) We decided, at our photographer's encouragement, to see each other before the wedding and take photos.  That was, HANDS DOWN, the best moment of the entire day...it was just us and the photographers.  I can tell you all that if it was up to us, we would have just eloped...we wanted to be married but we didn't want to have a wedding.  In the end, we had this wedding for our parents.  But...when we were alone to see each other for the first time...that moment was just for us...it was so emotional and spectacular!  I can't wait to see the photos : )

 

10) NOT wear a veil!  It was quite windy the day of the wedding and that thing would have been whipping everyone in the face had I worn it.  I did have a really inexpensive one that we used for the TTD the next morning.

 

Things I wouldn't do again:

 

1) Order maracas from a certain etsy seller.  That was a waste of $300.  They're still in my basement...smudged, wrong colour...soon to be thrown in the garbage.  Order from Amols!!!  The same maracas on Amols were available in Playa del Carmen, but were really roughed up in these huge baskets the shops keep them in and customers rummage through.  Amols has excellent customer service...one of my biggest regrets was not ordering through them.

 

2) Stress about what people think/do/say...I actually had certain people (who shall remain nameless) e-mailing news reports to my parents about things happening in Mexico (two thousand kilometers away from the resort that we would all be staying at).  Shame on them!  I wish I had had the guts to say, "If you have hang ups about your own personal safety, and your desire to never travel to X, keep it to yourself.  Don't ruin this experience for the rest of us!!!"  I am happy to report that all 32 of our guests left Mexico LOVING it and wishing they could have stayed the second week with us! 

 

3) Not sit with my FI on the flight down.  Yes, if you can believe it, the airline actually had us sitting 7 rows apart and the flight was totally full.  Saaaaad...I felt like an idiot when the flight attendant announced "So, where are our brides and grooms to be?  Hands up!!!" and the two of us weren't sitting together.

 

Things I wish I had done:

 

1) Spent time at Sephora (or a major department store) finding my perfect wedding lip colour.  The girl that did my makeup didn't have a whole lot of options and we had to try 4 different colours before I found one that I kinda liked.  But then I didn't have it for re-applying the rest of the day!!!  I also wish I would have asked the girl if I could have applied my own mascara.  I'm SUPER picky about my mascara and I HATE when it's clumpy (which it was...so I had to waste time working it out).  Actually, I wish I had done a hair and makeup trial at the resort spa before the wedding...I think it would have been money well spent, especially when "glamour/updos/etc" is not my day to day look!

 

2) We hired Elizabeth Medina to take our photos for 8 hours on the wedding day and for a TTD the next morning.  I only wish we had asked Elizabeth to shoot for 10 hours the day of the wedding and start earlier.  As hard as I tried for the day not to feel rushed, it did...and I think more time with a photographer before the ceremony would have helped that.

 

3) Get after the DJ to JUST play our playlist that we had spent hours compiling on our iPad (as it was I had to get after him twice!).  Instead, he chose some HORRIBLE tunes and seemed to lack the intelligence/intuition that a DJ requires to look out at the dance floor and say to himself, "Huhhh, well that song isn't really working for anyone!".  We should have sent him home and just played tunes off our iPad.

 

4) Trusted my gut more...when I did, things worked out great!  When I left it to someone else, notsomuch!!!  

 

5) Taken time one night before leaving for Mexico when I was by myself to compose a really nice letter to my husband to be.  But I ran short on time and had to write him a sweet little note instead.  It's amazing how people and events eat up your time once you get to the resort!

 

6) Hopped on to BDW earlier to see all of the amazing resorts in the Riviera Maya and read all of the reviews before making a decision...we likely would have chosen another resort rather than going back to a resort we had already been to.

 

Here's hoping these little tidbits will help some of you out with your destination wedding!

 

 

 


 

Originally Posted by Tlseege View Post

This really is a great thread!  Come on recent brides, have an opinions on what you would or wouldn't do again?



 

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I thought of a few other things I wish I had done:

 

11) Ask the wedding planner to see the officient's ceremony "script" prior to the wedding.  My FI wanted to keep things short and sweet, so we didn't add anything to the ceremony to personalize it (honestly, I wish we would have).  But, besides that, the officient mentioned something about "raising children" and we have no plans to have children, so had I known that piece was in there I would have asked for it to be removed.
 

12) Sent my BFF out to the ceremony site prior to everyone arriving out there.  We were running short on time and I told her "don't worry about it...I'm sure everything is under control".  Well, our chair sashes were the wrong colour, and by the time she realized that, our guests were there already and it was too late to remove/replace the sashes. 

 

13) Kept an ongoing master list of things to talk to the WP about...had I done that, I would have remembered to ask little things that had popped into my head as I went thru photos and reviews on BDW...like to ask the WP NOT to serve seafood canapes during the champagne toast...and to ask that they set the tables in the palapa with the white dishes and not the southwest-printed dishes that we ended up with.  But I'm a type A...and a stickler for details...and I tend to over-analyze things to death...so don't be surprised if this isn't my last entry on this thread! ; )
 

Originally Posted by MJKH View Post

Yes...I sure do!!!

 

Things I would do again (besides marrying my best friend and true love!):

 

1) Stay a second week at the resort on our own.  

OHHHH YES, DO IT!!!  That first week with everyone was so busy...if I had had to leave with everyone else I would have been miserable.  Honestly, that first week was no holiday for me! 

 

2) Get a bit of a "base" before I left for the tropics.

I had never tried a tanning bed before, but after seeing a friend's wedding pics (she's fair like me...and had some bad tan lines which I also knew I had...eeeep...no thanks!!!) I decided it was time to try it out.  I started three months before the wedding...didn't do it to "tan" but just to get a hint of colour and even everything out.  It was slow and controlled...never a burn...just 2 or 3 times a week.  No one ever commented before I left or asked "have you been tanning???" which was good.  I got a tiny bit more colour before the wedding when we were on the resort, but I'm super happy with my skin colour (i.e., lack of tan lines in my strapless dress!) in our photos.  

 

3) Beg my FI and his daughter to NOT get sunburned before the wedding.  They listened...enough said.

 

4) Hand out the wedding week survival (OOT) bags ahead of time, but save a few special things to give out at the resort.  We had so much stuff to take with us, there was NO WAY I was dragging all of that other stuff down.

http://www.bestdestinationwedding.com/t/76768/mjkh-wedding-week-survival-bags-are-done-lots-of-pics

 

5) Use 3 large (72L) Rubbermaid containers (sealed well with packing tape!) to transport our wedding stuff down to Mexico.  The airline didn't charge us for the excess luggage...the totes were super sturdy and cheap ($3.99 on sale) and we just left them behind.

 

6) Arrive at the airport well before everyone else (almost 3 hours) to get rid of all the luggage and be free and breezy to greet and help our guests as they arrived!

 

7) My FI was happy that we spent a bit of extra money for private vans (USA Transfers) to transfer us from the airport to the resort, rather than using the transfers included with our Sunquest packages.  We got to the resort quickly and didn't have to make X-number of stops on the way down to drop people off at other resorts.

 

8) Have a Mexican trio or Mariachi play during the cocktail hour when we returned from our photos. One of our favourite memories of the wedding day is making our way back to the reception after photos and finding three large Mexican men all dressed up, getting out of their 20 year old white Chrysler sedan in the parking lot, straightening themselves out and putting on their hats.  They actually played us back on to the beach...their timing was perfect!!!  It was sooooo fun and festive!!!

 

9) We decided, at our photographer's encouragement, to see each other before the wedding and take photos.  That was, HANDS DOWN, the best moment of the entire day...it was just us and the photographers.  I can tell you all that if it was up to us, we would have just eloped...we wanted to be married but we didn't want to have a wedding.  In the end, we had this wedding for our parents.  But...when we were alone to see each other for the first time...that moment was just for us...it was so emotional and spectacular!  I can't wait to see the photos : )

 

10) NOT wear a veil!  It was quite windy the day of the wedding and that thing would have been whipping everyone in the face had I worn it.  I did have a really inexpensive one that we used for the TTD the next morning.

 

Things I wouldn't do again:

 

1) Order maracas from a certain etsy seller.  That was a waste of $300.  They're still in my basement...smudged, wrong colour...soon to be thrown in the garbage.  Order from Amols!!!  The same maracas on Amols were available in Playa del Carmen, but were really roughed up in these huge baskets the shops keep them in and customers rummage through.  Amols has excellent customer service...one of my biggest regrets was not ordering through them.

 

2) Stress about what people think/do/say...I actually had certain people (who shall remain nameless) e-mailing news reports to my parents about things happening in Mexico (two thousand kilometers away from the resort that we would all be staying at).  Shame on them!  I wish I had had the guts to say, "If you have hang ups about your own personal safety, and your desire to never travel to X, keep it to yourself.  Don't ruin this experience for the rest of us!!!"  I am happy to report that all 32 of our guests left Mexico LOVING it and wishing they could have stayed the second week with us! 

 

3) Not sit with my FI on the flight down.  Yes, if you can believe it, the airline actually had us sitting 7 rows apart and the flight was totally full.  Saaaaad...I felt like an idiot when the flight attendant announced "So, where are our brides and grooms to be?  Hands up!!!" and the two of us weren't sitting together.

 

Things I wish I had done:

 

1) Spent time at Sephora (or a major department store) finding my perfect wedding lip colour.  The girl that did my makeup didn't have a whole lot of options and we had to try 4 different colours before I found one that I kinda liked.  But then I didn't have it for re-applying the rest of the day!!!  I also wish I would have asked the girl if I could have applied my own mascara.  I'm SUPER picky about my mascara and I HATE when it's clumpy (which it was...so I had to waste time working it out).  Actually, I wish I had done a hair and makeup trial at the resort spa before the wedding...I think it would have been money well spent, especially when "glamour/updos/etc" is not my day to day look!

 

2) We hired Elizabeth Medina to take our photos for 8 hours on the wedding day and for a TTD the next morning.  I only wish we had asked Elizabeth to shoot for 10 hours the day of the wedding and start earlier.  As hard as I tried for the day not to feel rushed, it did...and I think more time with a photographer before the ceremony would have helped that.

 

3) Get after the DJ to JUST play our playlist that we had spent hours compiling on our iPad (as it was I had to get after him twice!).  Instead, he chose some HORRIBLE tunes and seemed to lack the intelligence/intuition that a DJ requires to look out at the dance floor and say to himself, "Huhhh, well that song isn't really working for anyone!".  We should have sent him home and just played tunes off our iPad.

 

4) Trusted my gut more...when I did, things worked out great!  When I left it to someone else, notsomuch!!!  

 

5) Taken time one night before leaving for Mexico when I was by myself to compose a really nice letter to my husband to be.  But I ran short on time and had to write him a sweet little note instead.  It's amazing how people and events eat up your time once you get to the resort!

 

6) Hopped on to BDW earlier to see all of the amazing resorts in the Riviera Maya and read all of the reviews before making a decision...we likely would have chosen another resort rather than going back to a resort we had already been to.

 

Here's hoping these little tidbits will help some of you out with your destination wedding!

 

 

 


 



 



 

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Great info! I was wondering about the mirachi? maybe Ill just put some mexican flavor on my ipod :)



 

Originally Posted by gkashmira View Post

I just thought it might be helpful to know what i thought was worth doing and what was a waste of time/money/efforts. I think if I had known these ahead of time I could have saved money in some areas to spend on things that were more important...

I WOULD DO IT AGAIN:


Writing our own ceremony - this made it really special and I truly loved every minute of it!

Bouquet - I didn't think it would be important but I loved it. It was so bright and beautiful and it gave me something to hold onto for dear life when I thought I was going to burst into tears (of joy).

Video - Even though I don't have the whole thing yet I love watching the teaser video that Marci sent me. Plus it's great for those friends who weren't able to make it.

Welcome Dinner - Everyone had such a great time at Baja Cantina for our welcome dinner that I wasn't sure we were going to be able to top it for the wedding.

Bus for Welcome Dinner - the best decision ever. I have no idea how people would have found it or gotten there if we didn't have the bus.

DJ for our iPod - thank god we also hired a DJ to run our ipod. When the iPod froze half way through the reception he had music up and running off his system in less than a minute.

Chuppah w/ fake flower garlands - I loved the way this looked. Plus it provided us some shade on a very hot and sunny day.

Getting Married in Cabo - Ok, maybe this was the best decision I made (but the bus is 2nd!). Everyone had the best time and a number of people told me it was honestly the most fun they have ever had at a wedding.

Maye Cortinas - was awesome and she was able to hire vendors who were much more affordable than the ones the hotel provided.

Polaroid Guestbook

I WISH I HAD SKIPPED IT:

Cupcakes/Cake - no one ate them they were too full or drunk.

Beach bonfire - it was pretty unnecessary and people only sat down there for about an hour.

Believe it or not... My gorgeous (and expensive) dress. I ended up stressing so much over how it would look. Plus in order to afford it I am selling it so I don't have it as a keepsake. I loved how it looked and I felt beautiful... but there was so much time, money and stress involved in getting it and having it look perfect that if I had to do it all over again I might skip it. Don't get me wrong - if I could have kept it then my feelings may be different.

Mariachi Trio for ceremony and cocktail hour. I don't know if anyone could really hear them - they were really soft and in retrospect it would have been cheaper to just have music played through the sound system.


 

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Ohhhh...we LOVED our Mexican Trio...they were fantastic...they took requests from the group, played a mix of fast and slow songs...and one of the best parts was how awesome they were at inviting my 7 year old nephew with his sombrero and little guitar to play along with them.  The pictures and videos are priceless!  At least 1/2 of the group were up dancing with them at any given time.  Our guests would have been no further than 20 feet from the trio...and most of the time we were hanging out and dancing right next to them.  

 

Maybe it just depends on your space and the group...
 

Originally Posted by Smoylan View Post

Great info! I was wondering about the mirachi? maybe Ill just put some mexican flavor on my ipod :)



 



 



 

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Ok, I didnt see your comments in the thread for some reason! I love your letter to your husband idea. I owe him big time already (for putting up with my moods and want for it all to be over) I cant even imagine what the next three months will bring. I will def do that, and look into the Mexican Trio!
 

Originally Posted by MJKH View Post

Ohhhh...we LOVED our Mexican Trio...they were fantastic...they took requests from the group, played a mix of fast and slow songs...and one of the best parts was how awesome they were at inviting my 7 year old nephew with his sombrero and little guitar to play along with them.  The pictures and videos are priceless!  At least 1/2 of the group were up dancing with them at any given time.  Our guests would have been no further than 20 feet from the trio...and most of the time we were hanging out and dancing right next to them.  

 

Maybe it just depends on your space and the group...
 



 



 

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Well this thread officially just made me book my TTD!! We originally wanted to but weren't totally sure!!
Also we will be buying the Bose iPod docking station for our music!

 

Thanks for all the tips ladies!

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After spending time cleaning out wedding items in my basement last night, I'd like to offer up one more piece of advice to brides...

 

VISTAPRINT...I'm so happy with all of the items we utilized over the course of the last year.  Their customer service was excellent...if something wasn't printed to my satisfaction (blemishes on the paper, etc.) they reprinted the items and sent them express post every time so that I had replacements a week later.

 

Here's the problem...it's really easy to get "caught up" in their promotions and order way too much too soon.  I ended up throwing into recycling last night a whole bunch of personalized cards, etc. that we didn't use...for lots of reasons...my vision and plans changed over the course of the year, new ideas for items popped up on BDW threads, one of our flower girls (and her family) did not end up coming to Mexico (and it would have been too awkward to have given her the personalized bag, notebook, etc. after the fact).  Rest assured if you sign up to receive their e-mails/specials, you will get sent out a number of them each week.  Really take your time and plan out what you will need and how you will utilize your printed items.  When I was waiting for an e-mail from Vistaprint that offered free 7 day shipping, I ended up picking up the phone and asking one of their representatives if she had a current offer in the system that would meet my needs, and she made it happen!  Don't wait around for an e-mail...call them and tell them what you're looking for and they try their best to make it happen.  

 

So, don't leave anything to the last minute, but if I had to do it all over again, I would design my little heart out and save the items in my porfolio.  Then as my plan really came together 2 or 3 months before the wedding and the guest count was solid, I would start to order.  Just something to think about...
 

Originally Posted by MJKH View Post

I thought of a few other things I wish I had done:

 

11) Ask the wedding planner to see the officient's ceremony "script" prior to the wedding.  My FI wanted to keep things short and sweet, so we didn't add anything to the ceremony to personalize it (honestly, I wish we would have).  But, besides that, the officient mentioned something about "raising children" and we have no plans to have children, so had I known that piece was in there I would have asked for it to be removed.
 

12) Sent my BFF out to the ceremony site prior to everyone arriving out there.  We were running short on time and I told her "don't worry about it...I'm sure everything is under control".  Well, our chair sashes were the wrong colour, and by the time she realized that, our guests were there already and it was too late to remove/replace the sashes. 

 

13) Kept an ongoing master list of things to talk to the WP about...had I done that, I would have remembered to ask little things that had popped into my head as I went thru photos and reviews on BDW...like to ask the WP NOT to serve seafood canapes during the champagne toast...and to ask that they set the tables in the palapa with the white dishes and not the southwest-printed dishes that we ended up with.  But I'm a type A...and a stickler for details...and I tend to over-analyze things to death...so don't be surprised if this isn't my last entry on this thread! ; )
 



 



 

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