Since we’re talking about wedding things today on the blog, it’s only fitting I fill y’all in on this past week. This past week has been a little bit fun and a little bit stressful. I’ve been creating a loose guest list to get an idea of how many people we want, I’ve been searching for and calling on venues all week (and most are already booked for the date I want next year UGH), I’ve been doing research on bands and djs, and even more research on how to plan a great wedding on a budget. I knew weddings were expensive but DANG everything adds up quick.
On another note, we had a fabulous past weekend. Casey’s brother stayed with us and we all went up to Alpharetta, GA for the day Saturday and went to the cutest little area called Halcyon. They have shops, they have restaurants, they have walking and biking trails, and they even have residences! It was so lively and there were kids everywhere which Blakely loved.
We ended up eating at seriously one of the better Mexican restaurants I’ve ever been to called CT Cantina Taqueria. I got a rice bowl with shrimp, chicken, & veggies with queso drizzled on top (pictured below.) It was incredible!!!
We are now dog sitting for Casey’s aunt/uncle again for the next few days which is always nice to have a little change of scenery. We have fun touristy things planned for this weekend since the weather will be so warm!
This week on the blog we’re talking current favorites, a weekly photo dump, what we ate for dinners this week, all the wedding tips + advice I received from my Instagram followers and new month journal prompts to get your mind clear for March.
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Watching: American Idol. The first episode of the new season just streamed on Sunday. I don’t know why, but I am a sucker for a singing show. From The Voice to American Idol… I love them!!
Listening: Dr. Phil McGraw & Robin McGraw On Current Events, Success, & The Impact Of The Times We Are In. They interviewed Dr. Phil!!! And his incredible wife! This is a must listen episode full of fun stories, great advice, and so much wisdom.
Wearing: Gymshark Cropped Long Sleeve Workout Top. I specifically wear this top on my back + chest days since I don’t sweat as much. It is extremely flattering, breathable, and comfortable. I actually found mine at a thrift store!
Loving: Five Minute Journal. I’ve been using this journal since college (I’ve gone through a few), and it’s the number one journal in my opinion to invite more gratitude, happiness, mindfulness & reflection into your life.
Using: Solid starts app. For any mamas out there with babies/toddlers, this helpful informational app offers so much knowledge on starting solids. For Blakely at 14 months old, I use it to make sure I’m serving her the right size of various foods for her age group.
Following: Style Me Pretty blog. They have all the wedding content I’m looking for from planning and advice, to vendors and venues. I absolutely loved this blog post and plan to do something similar on my blog in the future.
2) PHOTOS FROM THE WEEK
3) OUR MEAL PLAN THIS WEEK
MONDAY: Balsamic Pork Tenderloin, Roasted Sweet Potato Cubes, & Arugala Salad Kit
Absolutely loved this meal. I found the balsamic pork tenderloin recipe from Food Network and it did not disappoint. It paired so well with the roasted sweet potato and side salad. Casey said he wanted to eat the salad for dessert it was so good!!! It was the arugala salad kit with lemon basil dressing from Trader Joe’s.
TUESDAY: Baked Penne Pasta with Zucchini
Any pasta night is a good night. I used brown rice penne pasta from Trader Joe’s and cooked it according to the package. While the pasta was boiling, I cooked the ground beef and seasoned it with salt, pepper, dried basil & oregano. Then in a baking dish, I put a layer of noodles, a layer of ground beef, a layer of marinara sauce (I got the garlic basil from TJ), a layer of Monterey jack cheese & Parmesan, and then repeated the layering process!
WEDNESDAY: Teriyaki Salmon, Fried Rice & Broccoli
Casey took over to cook this delicious teriyaki salmon and it was exactly what I was craving. Each week I hope to add some kind of fish to our diet to add some variety. And when fish is on the menu, Casey usually cooks! So as you can imagine, I love a good fish night.
THURSDAY: Pan-fried Chicken Breast, Green Beans, & Rice
So simple. But oh so good. We used our cast iron skillet for this one and I swear it makes all the difference with how the chicken turns out and tastes. Pairs deliciously with roasted green beans & rice.
FRIDAY: Dinner Out at Zama
Casey and I are meeting some friends out for dinner tonight at Zama! Zama is a Mexican cuisine an margarita bar… so basically my kinda place. We have never been but have heard great things and can’t wait to try it!
4) WEDDING TIPS FROM MY INSTAGRAM
I asked and you guys definitely answered!!! I asked on my Instagram story for all the wedding tips, and I received so many helpful tips, advice and words of encouragement. THANK YOU to everyone who took the time to respond. I’ll be sharing everything people said below:
- WEDDING PLANNER
- A few people said get a wedding planner to take the stress out of your wedding day. This is definitely something I plan on doing!
- A few people also said they did/are doing stations at their wedding. This is where the venue has servers who make the plates (kinda like buffet), but guests aren’t serving themselves. Someone said, “you basically have food out the whole time and people just get it as they want… since there is no specific time to sit and eat you only have to worry about chair and tables for 60% of guest count. Nicer than buffet, but less expensive than sit down dinner.
- Pros for buffet style is that it is so easy – everyone can just eat what they want whenever they want.
- Buy from Costco if on a budget. You can even order online and it’s a lot cheaper.
- Tons of big flowers aren’t worth it. Greenery and candles to the trick on a budget.
- ENGAGEMENT PARTY/OTHER PARTY
- Ask people to bring a handle of liquor to stock the bar at wedding. (I know some venues won’t allow outside liquor to be brought in, but this could save money if you find one that does).
- BAND OR DJ
- Someone said bands are more interactive which make it fun.
- Someone else said if you’re going for party/dance vibes DJ is best. DJ is also cheaper in most cases if on a budget.
- Have a tent rented and ready to go if wedding is outdoors.
- Tents are so expensive so if on a budget you might want to think of indoor venue.
- WEDDING FAVORS
- MANY people said these were not worth the money. It’s popular lately to have a late night snack as the night wraps up (for ex: pizza, chick fil a sandwich).
- PHOTOGRAPHER & VIDEOGRAPHER
- Spend extra money for a quality photographer.
- The majority of people said having a videographer is definitely worth it, even though it can be expensive.
- WEDDING CAKE
- People said this is an area you can save money on if needed. Someone suggested doing an ice cream bar and mini bunt cakes if the venue allows.
- Glassware rentals are not worth it if your caterer doesn’t provide it. Someone said they did nice plastic things instead and no one knew or cared about the difference.
- You can find good glassware at dollar store.
- OPEN BAR
- This was Casey’s response lol. It’s his one non negotiable of our wedding day hahaha.
- KID OR KID FREE?
- A few people said they are doing kid free, besides the flower girls and ring bearer. Someone said this decision upset a few people, but they are happy with their decision. That’s what matters!!
- Kids for ceremony, but kid free reception.
- If you’re doing kid friendly add a candy bar at reception… makes the kids feel special and they will remember.
- BIG WEDDING OR SMALL?
- Someone said they went to both their sister’s weddings- one was big and one was small. She said “the small was 100% more fun, special, and truly celebrated love. The big was just a party.”
- FIRST LOOK
- Someone recommended doing a first look so cocktail hour doesn’t drag.
A reminder: it is YOUR wedding day, so at the end of the day it is up to you and your fiance to choose how you want that day to look. Not everyone is going to agree, but if you’re happy, then your family and friends should be too!! <3
5) NEW MONTH JOURNAL PROMPTS
I found some of these prompts from Instagram and Pinterest and wanted to share in case you are looking to do a little journaling as we welcome in a new month. I answered these in my journal on March 1st and I just feel like it sets me up to have a productive month.
- Monthly affirmations: “I am…”
- Monthly goals:
- I want more…
- I want less…
- Highlight from last month:
- What are you most proud of from last month?
- Where do you want to focus on more this month?
- How can you incorporate more self care?