May 2017

Consider a Maine wedding venueThis entry is from our Expert Guest series where wedding and honeymoon professionals share their best tips on creating memories that last a lifetime.

There are only a few necessities when it comes to planning a wedding these days. Almost all elements of a wedding are completely optional, but the one key choice that must be made when planning your nuptials is the choice of wedding venue. If you don’t have a dream location in mind from the start, finding the perfect spot to say I do! can be challenging.

Here in Maine, there are so many different kinds of wedding venues to consider, and they all offer their own set of advantages and disadvantages. Take it from us here at French’s Point Estate, finding the right venue takes time and patience. To help you in your venue search, here are a few helpful tips for finding just the right spot for your wedding.

Talk to your intended about wedding planning

Talk To Your Intended About Your Ideal Wedding Venue

Before you ask your family and friends for input on what kind of a wedding experience they think you should have, head to your favorite restaurant or bar and have a heart-to-heart discussion with your love about wedding venue. Compare your vision of the experience you’ll be offering your guests, discuss your priorities, define the geographical regions to be considered, establish a rough guest list size, and determine a budget for this event before you do anything else. This will help you stay true to what you want for this experience, help you save time, help make your search far more focused, and allow you to both participate in the process as you can find a venue the suits you as a couple!

Talk To Your Friends And Read Reviews

Chances are, someone you know was married recently or maybe you recently attended a wedding.  Ask friends and family for the names of locations that they have experience with or know about. There is nothing better than first-hand knowledge from someone you trust when making a choice like this. The next best thing is to get feedback from other couples that have been married at the venues you’re interested in. Take the time to read real reviews from past couples.

Work with your wedding planner

Talk to Wedding Planners

Once you have narrowed in on your choice of preferred geography and have a sense of your vision, budget and priorities, reach out to a wedding planner for help. A regional wedding planner has excellent knowledge of the available options in a location, especially if you are not familiar with the landscape.  Experienced planners can make easy work of the wedding venue search. Some planners like Heather Cuzzi of Maine-based Cairn Events offer the wedding venue search as a stand-alone service, so you don’t have to commit to a full planning contract if you are unsure of the location and date for your event.  In Maine, we have an incredible community of Maine-based wedding planners you can use as a resource to start your search.

Examine sales materials

Review Sales Materials

Take the time to review the website and read the emails and documents you receive from the venues you inquire with before you schedule tours. You may save time and energy if you avoid exploring options that do not align with your needs, vision, and budget.

Schedule Calls

Before you schedule a tour of venues you have interest in, schedule a call to talk with the sales office for these venues you are considering. This is a wonderful way to determine if your expectations and needs can be met by a venue. If a venue is slow to reply to your emails and calls, will they provide you with the attention and service you deserve on your wedding day? Are they willing to invest time getting to know you and do they care about your vision for your celebration? Do they offer the capacity you need for your wedding event, rain or shine? Do you have good chemistry with the person you are communicating with?

These considerations will all be important on your wedding day if you choose to work with this venue.

Examine wedding venues

Make a Short List

Make a short list of two to four venues and take the time to tour them in person, if you are able.  If you have family or friends in the region being considered, and you can’t tour yourself, ask them to visit for you. At French’s Point, many of our couples reserve our venue sight-unseen. They can do so with confidence after viewing our virtual tours, website, checking out our Pinterest boards, and talking with us.

Send out save the date cards

Reserve your Date

Once you have found the right location, don’t delay! Book your date so you send out save-the-date notices, and so your guests have time to make their travel plans to join you. You can enjoy a good selection of available vendors for the rest of your vendor team if you book your venue early.

There is a perfect wedding venue for every couple. Now that you have the tools to find your perfect fit, we know you will enjoy the experience.

Looking for a convenient way to finance your dream wedding? Consider a honeymoon registry from Honeyfund.

Author Bio:

Jessika Brooks-Brewer, is the owner of French’s Point, a beautiful oceanfront estate located on the coast of Maine. She strives to assist her couples in crafting memorable, meaningful celebrations that mirror their vision of the experience they wish to create for family and friends to enjoy with them. When she’s not working with couples, she is working with the Maine wedding community in an effort to connect business owners with resources to help strengthen those businesses, to provide better experiences for couples and promote growth and opportunity for Maine as a domestic destination wedding region.

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Look great for your big dayThis entry is from our Expert Guest series where wedding and honeymoon professionals share their best tips on creating memories that last a lifetime.

Getting engaged is so exciting, and this truly is one of the best times of your life. You’re getting to spend the rest of your life with your best friend, and really, what could be better than that? As you plan your wedding, you’ll find there are so many fun things to work on – guest lists, decor, gifts, menu selection, cake tastings¦

Cake tastings for the big day

…oh no. Cake tastings! You are certainly not going to pass that opportunity up, but you also want to make sure you’re getting in shape for your big day. Don’t worry! You can still go to all of your cake tastings and be your best, fittest self for your wedding day. Use these 5 key ways to get in shape, and make sure you look and feel wonderful on your wedding day.

5 Ways To Get In Shape For Your Wedding Day

Prepare good food

1.     Start in the kitchen.

Despite popular belief, working out and still eating whatever you want will not help you tone up or lose weight. Weight loss starts in the kitchen. Once you’ve cleaned up your eating habits, you’ll start noticing a change in your energy levels, and you’ll be more motivated to hit those workouts! So, what to eat? When you’re cooking, think about filling your plate with a palm-sized amount of protein, a bit of healthy fats, and the rest of your plate with leafy greens and vegetables. Believe it or not, all fruits and vegetables are carbohydrates, so these are what will fuel you throughout the day! Healthy fats are ones from natural sources – think animal fats, avocados, or naturally occurring oils. Stay away from highly processed fats like vegetable and canola oil.

Know where your food comes from

2.     Know your food

Do you know where your food comes from? Do you know what’s in it? If not, it’s time to find out. Start reading your ingredient labels. Better yet, use food that doesn’t have ingredient labels! If there’s something listed that you can’t pronounce, can’t buy in the store by itself, or don’t know where to find it, it’s not food. Toss it. If you bought it somewhere in the middle of the grocery store, and it comes in a plastic bag, cardboard box, or other processed packaging, it’s not food.

While there are exceptions to this rule, it’s a good general one to follow. The most important thing is to read those ingredient labels and know what is in your food! You’re looking for nutrient-dense, whole foods with ingredients you can pronounce. And when it comes to treats? Make them count. The Oreos aren’t worth it, but the made-from-scratch cakes at your tasting certainly are.

Exercise to stay in shape

3.     Add in exercise.

 And by exercise, I don’t mean walking on the treadmill or the elliptical at the globo-gym while watching a TV show or reading a book. That is not exercise, that is recovery. You want to aim for 3-4 high-intensity workouts a week to burn fat and build muscle. You don’t need weights or a gym for these type of workouts – just a park or some open space, and a commitment to yourself for a healthier you. Use your body as the resistance weight and work on exercises like pushups, situps, burpees, and squats. If you’re not sure where to start, or would like assistance with developing a program that’s right for you, don’t hesitate to contact me! I offer personal training and fitness classes for brides virtually worldwide.

Sleep to become a well rested bride

4.     Get good sleep at night.

Does it take you awhile to fall asleep with all the wedding plans running through your head? Maybe you need to find a white noise machine, maybe you need to go to bed 30 minutes earlier. Regardless, getting enough sleep will help you to lose weight, have more energy, and be all around more alert and present for your day-to-day. You should be catching 7 ½-9 hours of z’s each night. People often discount sleep when they are stressed and busy and don’t make it a priority – don’t make that you! Give your sleep priority so you can be bright and shiny on your wedding day. It truly does benefit your overall health, and encourages weight loss.

Don't sweat the scale

5.     Ditch the scale.

I know, I know, you have a goal weight for your wedding, right? Well, hold onto your seat, cause I’m about to tell you something. I don’t even own a scale. What does that tell you? I run a food blog, I am a personal trainer, and I don’t know exactly how much I weigh. Nor do I care to.

Here’s why: the scale is just a number. It doesn’t tell you anything other than your relationship to gravity. When you start eating like this, and exercising regularly, you’ll start to see changes in your body. Your clothes will fit differently, you’ll feel differently. But I’m here to tell you, you might not see that number go down. You might even see it go up – muscle weighs more than fat, but takes up less space! In my first 3 months, I lost 3 pants sizes, but I didn’t lose a single pound. Don’t worry about the scale. Just keep eating well, exercising, getting good sleep, and the results will follow. You’ll feel better, and love the way you look, and won’t even worry about your relationship to gravity.

Implement these 5 small techniques, and I guarantee you’ll be in shape for your big day in no time!

More Help To Prepare For Your Wedding

  • Need healthy recipe ideas? Check out my food blog at PaleoScaleo.
  • Need personal training for the big day? Contact me at scullyj@mybhiwedding.com.
  • Set up a Honeyfund honeymoon registry to help finance your honeymoon.

BIO

Jessica Scully is an avid cooker, eater, and the blogger at www.paleoscaleo.com. When she’s not cooking, eating, and blogging, she spends her time coaching CrossFit, doing personal training for brides all over the country,  and planning weddings over at A Day at the Beach. Finding the paleo way of eating changed the way she looked at food, and she wants to share that with you!

She believes that paleo is simply a framework, a starting point for figuring out what works for you and your body. If you’re curious about her way of eating, and want to learn more, check her out over at www.paleoscaleo.com. She even has a FREE library of paleo tips, tricks

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