July 12, 2016

Aaron & Shauna | Belmont Manor


I must admit, this couple may go down, as the CALMEST in "Pre-nuptial History"!

"Wedding Day" began as the majority of them do..... uneventful. Not a rain drop in forecast and all of the sun & humidity that a June day could bring. The pre-ceremony vendors are on schedule and everyone is going about the normal rotation - but just as I was beginning to relax, I get a call, from the staff at the venue, that a black bear has been spotted on the property. Yes, you read that correctly - a BLACK BEAR! as in ......

          Soooo, I check the guest list and just as thought, no Mr. & Mrs. Bear
          listed. I advise the venue to staff to keep me posted, ramp up the prayers -
          x's 10, alert my staff and proceed to get dressed. What does one wear to wrangle
          a bear?!
          With traps in place and no additional bear sightings to report, I decided to move
          forward with "Plan A". I was more nervous than EVER and certain that the
          humidity wasn't the only reason we were perspiring, as all of the
          wedding events were scheduled to take place outside and NO one, with the
          exception of the Vendor Team, had any idea that there was a ummm "problem"; 
          but we were ALL ready to spring into action, at the first sighting of movement
          on 4 legs!  
          The ceremony took place in the serene Aqua Garden and it was everything the 
            couple dreamed of.

 Nope, none of the guests were wearing black fur, just checking.

            It was time for cocktails, which REALLY sent my blood pressure and 
            heart rate to a cruising altitude of 30,000 feet...surely food would draw our un-
            invited guest(s) to the party. Our staff continued to keep watchful eyes for this
            bear. We were so on edge about the bear, that the frogs on the lily pads didn't
            bother us and the musical sounds of the woodland animals were music to our

 Nope, still don't see anyone sporting a fur.

            As we moved the guests under the tent, for the reception, I began to relax - just
            a pinch. Maybe Yogi decided that it was bad etiquette to show up for dinner
           & cocktails unannounced. Or maybe he decided to save himself from a
            major fashion don't....as furs are NOT in season during the month of June.

            Whatever it was - I was ELATED that he decided to stay away! The guests ate,
            drank and danced the night away. We opted to let the couple in on our "little
            secret" at the end of the night and after they stopped laughing, they couldn't
            believe that we pulled it off.






Creative Team:
Venue | Belmont Manor & Historic Park, Elkridge, MD
Event Management | Affairs Remembered  
Floral Design |  Fleur de Lis Florist
Images | Jay Moore Photography
Entertainment | Capetown Productions 
Catering Team | Clementine Baltimore
Photo Booth | Charm City Photo Booths

July 4, 2016

That's Mrs. Bonante, To You! | Lori & Brittany


Have you ever witnessed joy happen in the life of a stranger and can't help but to feel good for them?! Whelp, that's how I felt during my initial consultation with one of our May 2016 couples.....meet Lori & Brittany Bonante.

There is so much I can say about these two, but one of the most important things I can say is that is that I witnessed a true partnership. Lori conjures up the adventures and somehow convinces Brittany to tag along - which is why they belong together! They took comfort in each other's ideas, they trusted me (even when we had to make alterations and forgo some of their dream plans), made me laugh and was never short of personality throughout our entire planning process.
"The Girls", as I nicknamed them, knew they wanted a wedding that was a reflection of THEM, as a couple.... A green / echo-friendly outdoor ceremony & reception, overlooking their favorite backdrop - The Great Falls, despite the nay-saying (I know, this is NOT a word) feedback, for taking the non-traditional route, that they did not solicit but so generously received.
The Girls couldn't wait for the sunny, warm and inviting May weather (I don't think any of us could, as we were ALL ready to shed our winter coats & outdoor accessories) and meticulously planned each detail, that would leave their guests with great memories of this May wedding.
May swiftly approached - either someone switched Mother Nature's medication or she was angry at Father Time and decided that we would pay for it....she gave us November weather, a raw and rainy day, on May 21, 2016 - not at ALL what we were hoping for. Being the OCD/Type A person that I am, I decided to enforce "Plan B" mid-week, as our ideal plans for "fun in the sun" were off! After notifying all of the guests, moving the vendors, altering the reception site, changing locations for the formal shots, rearranging the schedules & transportation itineraries, re-assuring the couple and several glasses of wine (mid week, not on the job) - we were ready! 

Guests were greeted by warm cozies and an open fire, to take the chill off of a rainy May morning. In addition to various spirits, the bar was stocked with teas, coffee and hot chocolate w/ marshmallows, which the guests REALLY appreciated. Who would've thought that we'd be tending to an open fire one weekend before Memorial Day?!
Armed with several boxes of large canopy umbrellas, that doubled as guest favors, and LOTS of praying, sometimes aloud, for respite from the rain - we set out to get both ladies down the aisle. I told good ol Mother Nature to "Bring It"! If she wanted a fight, she'd met her match. And with that warning, it was time to cue the ceremony selections.

Brittany surprised Lori with a guitarist for the ceremony!

                    Well what do you know, the rain let up during the ceremony.

Guests were treated to authentic Italian cheesesteaks & Spiedies, handcrafted by Bada Bing DC.

By this time, the party was in full swing and no one seemed to mind when the skies opened on us, again.


Looking back at these images makes me relive the day and I can't help but to hear the lyrics to "My Way" by Frank Sinatra. Hey I know I am just a planner but it is my day too, there is not a thing I would change, except the rain - of course. I hope they feel the same....Here's to you Mrs. & Mrs. Bonante - you did it "Your Way"!








Creative Team:
Venue | Great Falls National Park, Potomac, MD 
Event Management & D├ęcor | Affairs Remembered  
Floral Design | All In The Details 
Images | Sweet BeSpoke Photography 
Musician | Chris Wynton Guitar 
Catering Team | Bada Bing DC 
Bar & Beverages | Bar Stars Bartending 
Host Hotels | Marriott/North Bethesda, Cambria Hotel & Lowes Madison