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Avens' Mayan Rivieria Planning Thread! - 12.01.12

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Okay! Where to start. I'm being a rebel, and posting this a week after my wedding, instead of the week before - but now my ducks are all in a row.

 

1. Location

 

The first thing we did was pick a location.  Due to the nature of the group of people we assumed would come, we wanted somewhere "easy and safe" (we didn't have many world travelers, and for many this was their first trip anywhere) and somewhere accessible, as we had people coming from multiple locations in Canada and the U.S.

 

We decided on the Mayan Riviera (we had been to Mexico before and loved it) and after much ridiculous research and sleepless nights we decided on the Barcelo Maya Palace. It was big enough that we felt people could have their own vacations if they wanted, and look really nice.

 

It was gorgeous, and a good choice for a destination wedding.

 

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2. Dress

 

I went on an epic dress hunt that spanned two provinces and at 5 bridal salons, plus a wedding show.  I'm not really a girly girl, and had no idea what I wanted. Or at least I thought I knew - but I didn't.

 

I had a dress in my head - and after the initial dress shopping excursion, I decided to order it sight unseen.

 

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From my experience - unless you're desperate.  Don't do this.  Once I got the dress at home, I was so disappointed.  It really looks nothing like the photo.  Luckily, there was an issue with the stitching - and I was able to return it for a full refund (from NetBride, they were really great).

 

So the quest started up again. Now with no idea what I wanted - I tried on anything and everything until we had an idea.

 

Something simple, not blingy, no weird poofy bits, fitting up top to keep me on, and frolicky on the beach.

 

Almost made the cut

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I quite liked this one, but it was poofy. Also the model looks like an alien.

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I loved the skirt on this one, but the top just didn't do it for me.

LL

 

Finally we found it!! 

 

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Some of you may have seen my thread a few months ago, when I was starting to doubt my dress.  We had a big move to Alberta - and I hadn't seen it for a while.  Luckily that was just my brain being silly - and it turned out to be the perfect dress.

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In the midst of my mid wedding dress crisis. I started looking for a new dress.  Partially to make myself feel better, and partially to find something for the TTD since my mom had decided it was a travesty to wreck my real dress.

 

I found one on Kijiji for just over $100.  It worked perfect! I can't wait to get some pro pics back

 

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Back at it!

 

3. Flowers

 

I am a botanist and ecologist by trade and training, so flowers were important to me.  I knew I wanted Green Cymbidium Orchids. 

 

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However, upon further inquiry, they were crazy expensive in Mexico (at least at my resort).  $25 per flower!  So I opted to go the "real touch" route, because that particular flower meant a lot to me.

 

After much research and quotes and planning, I went with Bloom Bridal based out of the GTA. Reasonable prices, in Canada and most importantly, I liked their orchids!

A few other places were nice, but since I was doing real touch for the orchids, I needed them to be botanically correct.

 

My inspiration bouquet was this

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Judy from Bloom Bridal was great, she re-worked my bouquet at least three times until I was happy. I was really pleased with the results, and its currently sitting on my computer desk for me to enjoy.

 

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More photos are here on her facebook page.

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4. Invitations

 

I wanted boarding pass invitations.  I loved the idea from the start.  I took a couple photos that I liked off the interwebs, and photoshopped them to my liking and theme.  I had a couple crafting days ( and adventures at the scrapbooking store) and somehow made them myself. 

 

My "in detail" thread on them is here

 

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5. OOT bags

 

These were not exactly support by FH.  I don't think he quite understood why I was doing them.  He didn't discourage me, he didn't really help either. At the resort, everyone was raving about what a great idea they were, and how helpful some of the items had been.  He graciously gave me credit, and apologized for doubting the awesome.  He's a keeper.

 

Here was the final result. I pared them back a bit, and tried to only include things I thought would be useful.  Having been at an all inclusive before- I wasn't sure if snacks were really needed - as there was always food.  Plus mini bar in the room for late night cravings.

 

 

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Wet Bathing Suit Bag - FH and his buddy got clever, and filled it up with ice, and put a few beers from the mini fridge in our room in them.  Saved them going to the bar.

Koozie - When I was ordering my bags.mugs and lanyards from Oriental trading, I happened upon these for $0.99 a dozen. I figured I couldn't go wrong. I wouldn't have paid any more for them, I saw a couple people using them, most used the mugs though.

Customized travel mugs - more information here, post #12.

Aloe Vera from Avon

Calgon Coconut body lotion from the Dollar Store!

Playing cards, I put one of our stickers on them (Michaels, I got some for $0.45, and the rest for $0.75, great place for cards with fun patterns)

Sewing kit from Michaels

Hand sanitzer from BBW (after Christmas and clearance, $0.50 each)

Two personalized lip balms, one vanilla (extras for sale) and one SPF.  I mostly used the SPF from avon, I ran out at the end and bought a couple packages of Blistex.

Lens cleaners with alcohol.  $1 for a pack of 20 at the dollar store.  I bought 3 packages and divyed them up.

Kleenex - I have allergies, so very handy on the beach when they acted up!

Seashell Bottle opener - more of a typical favor, and hopefully something they can use at home

Hibiscus tote back from Oriental trading.  The bright colourful bags were great, you could always see where our group or someone from the group was sitting.

Green badge holder with lanyard.  Everyone LOVED these.  The best idea ever, since bathing suits almost never have pockets.

 

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Badge holders in action!

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Sampling of travel mugs

 

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Bag and travel mug in action

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6. Craftiness

 

Other assorted craftiness included making all of the bouts for the groomsmen, our dads and brother, and corsages for our moms and grandmas.

 

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My dads and stepmom

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I did a few other things that I didn't get photos of - like wrapping raffia fans with ribbon, and making barefoot jewellery for bridesmaids (I know our pro photog got some pictures of it), hemming my TTD dress, and doing a fix on my shoes since they were to loose.

 

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7.  Cake

 

Dun dun dun

 

Here's one of the only things that went wrong with our wedding.  They kind of wrecked my cake.  Granted, it was delicious!

 

I bought butterflies off of etsy to decorate my cake.  I had visions of beautiful butterflies flying.

 

Something like this

 

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Unfortunately, the language barrier happened, and when I said "make sure you don't put the butterflies in the fridge", it didn't quite happen.  They got refrigerated, and the condensation made them wilt like soggy bits of paper. The chef guy was pretty upset. He didn't speak english, but he told my friends that spoke spanish it was beautiful beforehand, and the butterflies were flying.  We didn't let us get it down (though I risked bursting into tears for a moment).

 

Top layer was strawberry, bottom coconut both delicious

 

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