Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Are Engaged

The British royal family is getting a new member Meghan Markle. She and Prince Harry are engaged! Clarence House announced today, after months of speculation, that the couple will wed in spring 2018.

Meghan Markle’s engagement ring designed by Prince Harry using a piece of his mother’s jewelry is giving us some serious #relationshipgoals! The stunning three stone engagement ring holds one diamond from Botswana and two stones from Lady Diana’s personal collection!

This is why one should NEVER STOP dreaming. Your origin is not your story. You are the only author of the chapters in your life. Congratulations Meghan Markle and Prince Harry.

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Discover Jamaica With Your Wedding Guests

Getting married in Jamaica and want to plan some day trips and adventures for your bridal party and guests?

Come and Discover Our Jamaica with Us

Let us proudly show you around our home. From our great houses to coffee factories to rum distilleries to our favorite places to eat – see Jamaica through our eyes.

We are customized tours at the highest level, perfectly tailored to suit you.

Your Jamaica tour experience is our number one priority, ensuring you are comfortable and satisfied. When you book with us you can expect that we will pay attention to details, we are never late and we always open to customizing your tours. We are not a large company and we don’t have a large fleet of buses, that leaves us with enough time to manage your trip more intimately – we have frequent communications with our guests from the moment you book, through your time in Jamaica to the day you return home.

A guide is ready to take you on a tour of Jamaica’s historical places and cultural highlights, while helping you see the real country thriving outside the resort gates.

Contact us at  tours@discovermyjamaica.com for details or call us at 541-7772 or 718-880-4066 for available packages or let us help you create your own.

DIY Centerpieces

IMG_2275Having an office party or entertaining at home this upcoming holiday season? On our Facebook page jamaicaweddings and on this blog each week we will featuring DIY Centerpieces and party decor ideas for this upcoming season. To sign up to receive notifications of when we are doing a love video please visit http://www.celebrationsjamaica.com

Below are some black and white themed DIY centerpieces we did this week. Please note all these centerpieces can be easily done, you don’t need to be a florist to do the centerpieces shown.

Also all the items shown are available for rent from us and the water pearls or beads shown for these DIY centerpieces are available for sale from us:

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Things To Do As Soon As You Get Engaged

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If you just got engaged, Congratulations! We know you are excited and may do a number of things from calling family to doing cart wheels. But don’t get overwhelmed. Below are our top things to do to get your wedding planning into high gear:

1. Share The Great News – Contact all the persons important to you first before even sharing it on social media. You don’t want your parents, BFFS and siblings hearing it from other or reading it on social media first.

2. Get a Manicure ASAP – You fantastic ring and hands will be on display for the next few weeks and you want it to look your best.

3.  Share Your News with the Rest of The World – If you are a private person you family and close friends may be enough but if you are not and want to share the fantastic news with everyone go right.

4. Wait 2 weeks to 1 month before you start planning – Let the news and everything sink in first. Enjoy this period. There is enough time for wedding planning.

5. Get It Sized – If you ring is fitting correctly great if not you can get it sized.

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6. Money and the budget is so important before you start wedding planning so decide as a couple what your budget is.  Here are tips on how to create your wedding budget and stick to it http://jamaicaweddingsblog.com/how-to-create-a-wedding-budget/

7. After you have decided on the budget. Set the date. Good vendors and locations are booked up early and you need the date to book any wedding location or service.

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8. Decide if you want a bridal party and if yes who will make the cut. Make a final decision together before you start asking friends. Why Some Couples Decide Not to Have a Bridal Party

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9. Decide if you will be bringing on a Wedding Planner to help with planning your wedding. You will need to do your research and ask for references and set up appointments. For the vendor referrals alone, a wedding planner is totally worth it. Check out the Reasons Why You Should Hire A Wedding Planner

10. Create your wedding planning website, you can use any of the templates or even start with something like Pinterest to figure out what you want and what your wedding style is. You can set your board to private as you want to avoid sharing your big day stlye amd decor with everyone. You can invite your wedding planner, mom and bridesmaid but limit the many views of what you should and should not be doing.

11. The Wedding Dress – If you are planning more than 12 months in advance you don’t have to make a mad dash to the stores just yet. But you want to start looking to see what you would prefer for your wedding day style before you make a final decision.

Along with working your planner and the tips above you should be well on your way. Congrats again and happy planning.

8 Great Reasons Not To Have a Bridal Party

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Many couples are choosing not to have a bridal party for a variety of reasons. Think of all the movies with bad behavior from bridal party members for various reasons or do we even need to go to the movies to see sometimes the challenge of choosing certain friends over others to be members of the bridal party. Sometimes it may be more pain than pleasure. Here are a few reasons you might choose to do the same:

1. Budgetary Contraints – Having a bridal party can be expensive and if you are on a tight budget you may not want to spend money on flowers, or hair and make up and other expenses that may come with having a bridal party.

2. You Don’t Want To Hurt Anyone’s  Feelings – Having to choose a group of friends over others can be a challenge and may ruin long term friendships. So some couples opt not to put themselves under pressure to make that choice or to hurt any of their friends.

3. You dont want to obligate your friends to spend money for your wedding – Being apart of a bridal party can be expensive and many couples have opted not to force or have their friends and family members spend money on purchasing dresses, suits and other expenses that comes with being a member of their bridal party.

4. You are Having a Small Wedding – You may be planning a small wedding and having a bridal party with half the guests standing beside you may look weird.

5. You Want All Your Guests to Have a Good Time – You dont want your friends to feel pressured to give speeches, to spend money or to get the feeling that you are giving them work to do.

6. Its Your Second Marriage – You may have done the big bridal party the first time around and this time you want it to be low keyed an intimate.

7. You want the wedding day to be stress free – Sometimes having to worry about id a bridesmaid or groomsman is on time and did what they were suppose to do or even just the sheer confusion of so many persons being in the room with you on your most special day you may opt for peace and tranquility and some alone time.

8. No Bridal Party Equals Less Planning – Nobody but you and your finace to coordinate with. No waiting on the bridal party to start the rehearsal etc.

Jamaican Destination Wedding Checklist

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Planning a destination wedding in  Jamaica is like planning any other wedding if you were at home. It contains all of the same elements, a cake, wedding ceremony and reception etc. But then there are the differences, like finding an officiant and helping your guests make travel plans. Below are our checklist of things you must do:

1. Devise a Budget

2. Hire a local wedding planner to help you pull all the details together – You will need someone to do the groundwork for you. So do your research and select someone with expereience in planning and executing destination weddings and someone thats the right fit for both of you.

 

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3. Decide on a date and place – These two go hand and hand.  You need esearch weather patterns so you don’t inadvertently choose a date during hurricane season. The location will be one of the hardest decisions during the entire process so give yourself enough time to do the groundwork. If you can visit any sites you’re interested in, go for it; if not, call prospective resorts and talk to their event planners. Don’t just rely on photos and details on their websites. (Make sure your cell phone plan includes international calls, if relevant.)

4. Come up with your guest list – Start out with your dream list but then be realistic: Will your elderly relatives be willing and able to fly to Jamaica ? Or keep the list small from the start if you have a modest budget.

5. Know your wedding marriage requirements

6. Make Your Travel Plans

7. Create A Wedding Website – It’s the perfect place to keep your guests informed. Update your site whenever you have more details to share, such as hotel accommodation info.

8. Mail Save The Dates  – Do this about nine months before the big day. Give the date and location of your wedding and your wedding website address.

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9. Pick Your Bridal Party – Pick your favorite friends – this is no different than if you were marrying in New York, the only difference is that: If anyone will be very pregnant on your wedding day, she may not be able to fly and can they afford to travel.

10. Work with Your Planner To Find Suitable Vendors – You’ll need recommendations for services like a photographer, musicians, florist, and officiant. If you are working with a resort planner,  do your research, before booking anyone, make phone calls to each vendor rather than putting all your trust in the hotel’s suggestions.

11. Get a Passport or Visa –  If you’re getting it for the first time, apply at least 12 weeks ahead of your departure since it could take months to process, especially during the busy spring and summer seasons.

12. Book a Block of Hotel Rooms or Villas if That is Your Preference –  For hotel rooms ask for a group rate if you guarantee a certain number of rooms..

13. ORDER YOUR DRESS

Think about the climate on your wedding day. If you’re getting married on the beach a full ball gown may look out of context. Order your dress about nine months ahead so it arrives in the salon with plenty of time to get all your fittings done before you hop on a plane.

 

14. ORDER THE BRIDAL PARTY ATTIRE

The girls’ dresses should be ordered about six months ahead and the guys’ outfits about four months ahead.

 

15. BOOK ALL VENDORS

Get signed and countersigned contracts from the musicians, caterer, baker, etc. Everything you discussed and ordered should be listed.

 

16. SEND OUT INVITATIONS

Do this eight to 12 weeks ahead of the wedding.

17. GO SHOPPING

Your to-buy list includes wedding rings, favors, bridal party gifts, and honeymoon clothes.

 

18. HELP GUESTS PACK

Add a section of packing tips to your wedding website so guests will be prepared. They may know to take bathing suits to a beach destination but may not pack a hoodie for when the sun goes down and the wind picks up. If you’re planning any special dinners, they’ll be dress-code-ready and won’t show up in shorts and tees when dressier attire is expected.

19. PLAN GUEST TRANSPORTATION

You can use local transportation which your planner can help you arrange and which is always cheaper or you can have a hotel van pick up guests at the airport to shuttles driving them around to different wedding events, providing reliable transportation is just one way guests will feel cared for by you and glad they made the trek.

 

20. CONFIRM EVERY DETAIL WITH EVERY VENDOR

If you are not working with a planner two days before the wedding, call the officiant, caterer, photographer and all other vendors to make sure everyone knows arrival or delivery times, addresses, and what they’re doing/bringing to the wedding. Give them your groom’s and maid of honor’s phone numbers too.

 

Wedding Games

Wedding games can be so much fun. Below are some popular wedding games:

Shoe Game

This is a great ice breaker, and gets everyone involved. I found this game originally browsing youtube and it works great for weddings, anniversaries and engagement parties.

Set two chairs back to back in the middle of the dance floor.
Ask the bridal party to stand about 10′ in front of the chairs… brides maids/maid of honor on one side and groomsmen/best man on the other.
Have the bride sit in the chair facing her bridesmaids…then have the groom remove both of the brides shoes.
Have the groom then sit in the other chair facing his groomsmen and remove both of his shoes as well.  Trade one shoe each so both the bride and groom have one of each of their shoes.

Now you will announce “This game is to show how much the new Mr./Mrs. John and Jane Doe really know about each other… I will ask you a question and you raise the shoe that you think best fits the answer to the question… alright here’s a practice question…”Right now, who has the most cash on them?”

Sometimes you’ll see some great hesitation faces like their really not sure, or even better when you ask a question like… “Who wears the pants in the family”… Sometimes the bride will put up her shoe, and the groom will put up his. It’s hilarious. You’ll get high fives, and the families laughing.

Below are example of some questions

1)     Who wakes up first in the morning?

2)     Who takes the longer shower?

3)     Who spends the most time getting ready to go out

4)     Who is more into their looks?

5)     Who is the biggest flirt?

6)     Who is the more serious person?

7)     Who is more creative?

8)     Who is the jokester?

9)     Who is more outgoing?

10) Who is more likely to get injured?

11)Who made the first move?

12)Who said “I LOVE YOU” first?

13) Who’s the better cook?

14) Who has the wackiest family?

15) Who’s the better driver?

16) Who’s the faster driver ?

17)  Who spends more money?

18)  Who is in control of the checkbook?

19)  Who wears the pants in the family?

20)  Who is always right?

21)  Who is in charge of the remote?

22)  Who is more organized?

23)  Who will be doing most of the yard work?

24) Who is more likely to take care of a spider in the house?

25) Who is better at keeping secrets?

 

 

Bride & Groom Wedding Trivia Questions

1. Where did the bride and groom meet?
2.  Where was their first date?
3.  How long have they been dating?
4.  When did the bride and groom kiss for the first time?
5.  Where and how did the proposal take place?
6.  Where are they going on their honeymoon?
7.  How many pets do they own, what type, what are their names?
8.  When did the bride and groom’s parents meet for the first time?
9.  What is the bride and groom’s nicknames?
10.  How many siblings to the bride and groom have?
11.  What was the first weekend getaway or vacation they have taken together?
12.  Who picked the engagement ring?
13.  What are the middle names of the bride and groom?
14.  What is the bride and groom’s favorite sport?
15.  How many kids to the couple plan on having?
16.  What was the first job in their life?
17.  What college did they attend , what major?
18.  Who does all of the cleaning where they live together?
19.  Who travelled the furthest to get to the wedding?
20.  What is the couples favorite style of music? Dance?
21.  What is the couples favorite drink?
22.  What is the couples favorite food?
23.  What is the couples favorite color?

Love Counts

For this wedding game, you will need bags of Hershey’s Kisses, a bucket or box, and the arms of the bride and groom. In this game we’ve titled, “How Much Love Can You Hold For Me?”, the goal is to guess how many Kisses the bride and groom can hold in their hands! This simple game is perfect for a reception of any size.
Round up all the guests who would like to participate in this game. Have the groom dip his hands into a bucket full of Hershey’s Kisses to grab as many as he can. With the Kisses still in his hands, the guests must now guess how many Kisses he is holding. As the groom patiently waits and balances all the Kisses still in his hands, have all the guests help in the counting process. The one with the closest guess to the final count will win a prize. Now, it’s time for the bride to see how many Kisses she can hold!
Modified versionHave the bride try to pile on as many Kisses as she can onto the groom. She can place them wherever she wants to but he cannot drop them! In this modified version, all the guests can be involved cheering the bride as she piles the Kisses higher and higher onto the groom!

 

Play that Tune

This is a great game for smaller intimate wedding receptions where many of the guests are familiar with one another. Before the wedding day, create short song clips using favorite tunes enjoyed by the bride and groom.
Round up a group of guests and divide them into two teams. One member from each team will have a “play that tune” face off. First one to recognize the song can shout out the answer.  The winner of each round proceeds to the back of the line and continues to play. Others, less fortunate, sweeten their departure from the game, with a sweet gift of candies wrapped in cellophane. Final winner receives a grand prize!

Stick the Kiss

This wedding game is an easy way to get a lot of guests involved with minimal effort from them. All they need to do is peel and stick!  Enlarge full body photos of the bride and groom or draw a cartoon version of the married couple. Using stickers with hearts or kisses, number each one and its backing. The goal for the guests: where does the bride and groom want their first kiss as a married couple to be?  Have the newlyweds write their answers down on a secret piece of paper. Encourage guests to approach the photos and place their stickers wherever they please. You can imagine the possibilities of where the kisses may end up, especially given all the choices! The guest whose sticker is closest to the answers from the newlyweds wins a prize. At the end of all that, make sure to have the bride and groom demonstrate their answers!

Tribute to the Best

Give a little something back to your guests at the wedding reception. This is a fun way to start the evening off and helps to warm up them up for the more interactive wedding games to come as the night progresses.
To celebrate the beginning of your new journey with your husband, why not celebrate the triumphs and ‘bests’ of your guests? Have your MC announce a “Tribute to the Best”! Give a lavish gift to the couple that has been married the longest (is that not inspiring?), the most loving couple, the most active couple, and any other couples you admire.  Fancy twist: During this segment of the night, why not also pay a special tribute to both sets of parents with a little video montage of their lives?

When is Your Birthday?

This is a simple wedding game aimed to help the bride and groom give away their beautiful centerpieces to the guests.  Have the MC announce that the person at each table with the birthday closest to the bride and groom’s wedding day will become the proud owner of the centerpiece at his/her table. Jazz up this game by using birthdays to select your guests for a raffle draw! Other ideas: Hide a trinket under one chair at each table; place a special sticker under one plate at each table; first person to sing at each table; first person that used the bathroom at each table…and the list goes on, but you get the idea.

Artists at Work

Bring out the hidden creative talents of your guests with this fun game called “Artists at Work”. Gather a group of willing guests who will instantly be transformed into the next Picasso.
Give each a sheet of paper and a large tip marker (allowing seated guests to see the final products). The objective: to draw a picture for the newlywed conveying their well wishes in 30 seconds! The bride and groom will choose the two finalists and the rest of the guests can choose the winner by applause!

Bride or Groom?

This wedding game really helps to liven up the atmosphere at the reception since it requires the participation of the entire wedding party. Guests are sure to love this game. The women form one team and the men form another. Each receives two signs, one with “BRIDE” and one with “GROOM” written on them. Ensure the signs are large enough for your guests to see clearly. Have a list of “who” questions such as, “Who do you think will snore the loudest?” or “Who is the neatest?” or “Who will hog the bed?” The entire wedding party raises the applicable sign in answer to the question. Imagine the varying answers you may get!

Choose modest questions that will not embarrass the newly married couple too much in front of close family, co-workers, and young children (especially if they are relatively private people). You know them best!

Can’t Touch This!

Inspired by the classic children’s game of musical chairs, this wedding game requires guests with quick hands and a rhythm for juggling! You will need to create small bags of candy using cellophane and ribbon (or any other trinket) and an energetic song to mimic the up-tempo pace of this game (our title may give hints to a possible song choice).  Have all the participating guests stand in a circle. The objective: at the sound of the music, guests will have to quickly pass the candy around the circle. When the music stops, everyone stops moving. The person with the candy is eliminated and returns to their seat. Let him/her keep the candy as a sweet token for playing the game. This continues and the last person left receives a prize!

Feed Me, Feed Me

Marriage is all about teamwork. This hilarious game is perfect for the wedding reception and requires the new bride and groom to communicate and work together as a team. Begin with the bride sitting in a chair while the groom is blindfolded. Place a piece of banana into his hand and spin him around once. Now, listening only to the directions given by his new bride, he must make his way over to her and feed her the banana!  Once he is successful, switch positions. This time, give the bride a nice juicy piece of wedding cake topped with whipped cream. How well will the groom do in guiding his bride to feed him? A few notes: since the bride is wearing all that lovely makeup, make sure to give the groom a food item that isn’t too messy or it may ruin her look and possibly her wedding dress too. Have the wedding party shadow the bride and groom while they are blindfolded to avoid any accidents.

Guess Who?

This is another wedding game for the reception that aims to place the bride and groom in the spotlight using one very simple prop: a blindfold.  To test how well the groom knows his new bride, have him blindfolded and seated in a chair facing all the reception guests. Now comes the fun part. Round up as many guests as possible, from the young to the old, men and women.  The objective: can the groom figure out which one in the lineup is his new bride? In the tame version, the groom can shake each guest’s hand to find his new wife. Remember to play some fun and upbeat music during this game!  Other possibilities: Have each guest kiss the groom on the cheek; the groom must feel each person’s leg (particularly fun if there are a lot of men in the lineup!).

La La La La Love Song

Liven up the wedding reception and get the guests involved! Inspired by the “Shake Shake Shake” game, guests will have to sing a few bars for the bride and groom to kiss.  Determine what songs can be used. You can choose a theme, such as songs that contain the word “love” or songs from the 1980s or have guests sing for a certain amount of time. The point is to have fun and enjoy the entertainment (and to get the bride and groom to kiss, of course)!

Marriage Advice 101

This is a great game to play at a small wedding reception with close friends and family. Raise the laughometer with this simple yet fun game of “Marriage Advice 101”.  Provide guests at each reception table with index cards and pens. Their task: to come up with the best marriage advice they can give for the newlyweds. Read out some of the highlights during the night. Award gifts for “The funniest advice given”, “The best advice given”, and any other category you can think of.

Piggy Back

This wedding game requires a strong groom and a spacious hall. Rather than carrying his bride over the threshold of their new home, this bold groom is going to bravely perform a piggyback ride in front of all the reception guests!   Have the Master of Ceremonies (MC) announce this brave feat of strength as he piggybacks his new bride around the reception hall, symbolizing their new journey together as husband and wife. Make sure to have the guests cheer on the groom. Safety comes first, so please prepare accordingly if you plan on using this game!  Another possibility: Tell the groom he must get from point A to point B in the reception hall with his bride but her feet can’t touch the floor! This version tests the crafty wits of the groom and will bring just as many laughs from the guests as the original game.

Shake Shake Shake

Want the bride and groom to lock lips during the reception? Guests will have to do a little moving of their own in this wedding game we call, “Shake Shake Shake”.  Create a CD with a variety of fun and upbeat songs (Chicken Dance anyone?). Guests who want to see the newlyweds kiss will have to do a quick boogey on the dance floor! This is a great wedding game to play with a lively group of guests. Children can get involved too!

Aloha hula hula

Have your guests doing a lip hip action with this fun and hilarious wedding game! This game is all about making your guests work for that golden kiss from the bride and groom. All you need is a hula hoop and leis for participating guests.  During the reception, have the MC or someone in the wedding party announce a special hip twist to the night’s festivities. If anyone would like the newlyweds to kiss, he/she must hula with the hula hoop for 30 seconds! Now you know this game will produce some laughs!

Celebrate with a Bang!

What’s a wedding reception without a little fun aimed at the bride and groom? This wedding game is ideal for any reception.  Celebrate the wedding with a bang! This silly game requires one balloon and the bride and groom. The objective: the new Mr. and Mrs. must work together to pop the balloon using any body part except their hands and feet!  Hmm… this game sounds very interesting. Remember to have the guests cheer on the newlyweds!  Modified version: if you want to see the game go faster, use a bag of ice!

 Cherry on a String

Now this is one wedding game for the reception that really aims to put the bride and groom in the spotlight. It receives a “spicy” rating because, well, the newlyweds are really going to have to work during this game!  This game requires one bride, one groom, and one cherry on a string held by a willing member of the wedding party. The goal: using only their mouths, the newlyweds must work together to eat the cherry. Begin by positioning the fruit within close reach of the married couple. Raise and lower the treat to add suspense and much laughter! The game ends when the cherry is gone.

Garter the Gander

The saying goes, “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander” and what better way to show this off than with a gender switch on this timeless ritual!  For this wedding game, pre-arrange to have the groom put on the garter (without anyone noticing, of course!). Sometime during the reception, gather all the single men and announce that the garter toss is about to begin.  Have the groom act as though he will be revealing the garter on the bride. Now, flip the switch! Play frisky music as the groom begins to pull up his pant leg and hear the guests roar with laughter! Let the bride slowly take the garter off the groom…and the rest, they say, is history.

Key to His Heart

This wedding game really tests how well the new bride and groom work as a team. The only materials required are a long strand of ribbon (enough to wrap around the groom a few times over) and one clean generic house key.  With the groom standing up, have him hold one end of the ribbon while his groomsmen wrap the rest of it around his body. One groomsman continues to hold the other end of the ribbon while the bride is given the ‘key to her groom’s heart’.  The object of the game: the groomsman strings the key onto the ribbon and the bride must now move the key around the groom until she reaches the end that is in his hand. The catch: the bride can only use her mouth to move the key!

Leggs Work Together

For this wedding game, you will need one relaxed wedding reception, one hard-boiled egg, one daring groom, and one bold bride.  The objective: with patience and concentration, the bride tries to transfer the egg up one leg of the groom’s pants and over to the bottom of the other pant leg, all without dropping the egg!

Putter Up

This is another great way to have your guests moving and swinging at your reception. All you need is a golf club, some putting green, and guests with a good swing!  Let family and friends know at the onset of the night’s celebrations that the newlyweds will only kiss if someone can get the golf ball into the hole! There will be plenty of laughs as guests attempt to putt their way into wedding bliss history! For an added touch, bring along a green jacket (homage to a famous golf tournament) to be worn by the first person to get a hole-in-one!

Show Me Your Love

Rather than the traditional tapping on dinnerware to have the bride and groom kiss, this wedding game requires a little more effort from the guests.  As family and friends begin the classic ritual, have the MC announce a special twist to the night’s festivities. Since imitation is the greatest form of flattery, guests who would like to see the newlyweds lock lips must first come up and show everyone how the kiss is done. The newlyweds must then re-enact the same kiss! From the romantic peck on the hand to the fiery passionate hair tossing liplock, what will your guests brave to demonstrate?

 

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