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LindsayBrown Photography Hudson Valley wedding same-sex couple Cedar Lakes Estates Port Jervis New York

Summer Hudson Valley Wedding at Cedar Lakes Estate in Port Jervis, NY

Summer in the Hudson Valley is a magical time. Carrie and Rebecca’s summer wedding at Cedar Lakes Estate in Port Jervis captures the summer so perfectly with vibes of camping at the lake and definitely gave their guests a taste of the “hazy, lazy, dog-days of summer” with a twist of modern elegance and rustic charm.
 

We chatted with Carrie and Rebecca and here’s there story:
 

How did you meet?
 

Rebecca: We met on Match.com! Carrie was living in NYC and I was living in Vermont. After less than a year I moved to NYC to be with Carrie and attend college.
 

Tell us all about the proposal!
 

Rebecca: Carrie didn’t hold back! We go to Park City, Utah about once a year and it has become a special place for us. So, naturally January rolled around and we were off to the mountains! One day we woke up and Carrie told me we were going snowmobiling, being from Vermont myself I was very familiar with snowboarding and very excited! The day was brisk with a light flurry. We drove to the location, got on our snowmobiles and road up a mountain with a guide. Once at the top, the guide gave us some time alone, which I later found out was planned. Carrie asked me to make snow angels with her. I, suspecting nothing, started playing gleefully in the snow. Carrie got my attention when she attempted to get on one knee, the snow was probably 6 ft deep and pulled a ring box out of her pocket. She proposed with her mother’s engagement ring that her parents graciously passed down to us. It was an insanely magical moment.
 

Describe the wedding planning process. Why did you choose the vendors you worked with?
 

Carrie: It began a few months after our engagement. We looked into a couple of venues and then was told about Cedar Lakes Estate (CLE) from a friend. We quickly went up to Port Jervis, NY and fell in love with the property and what the owners, Stephanie and Lisa, had created. We were hooked! We also loved that CLE provided a weekend-long experience for us and our guests. CLE made it very easy for us and provided a list of suggested vendors, from there we narrowed it down to vendors that aligned with our style. This process was the same with our wedding planner, Amanda Savory from Amanda Savory Events (formerly Bespoke Moments). We met with her and knew it was a good fit!
 

Tell us about your wedding day?
 

Rebecca: Our wedding day was amazing. Started with a delicious breakfast and then we and our guests took advantage of the property; yoga, pool, ‘the blob’ (a big bouncy tube in the lake) and zip lining. Our ceremony was held on the beautiful mountaintop. Moments before our ceremony a fawn walked across the seating area, creating an insanely perfect ambiance. We were married by Carrie’s childhood friend Sarah. The reception was in the barn and the food was INSANE, our guests were very impressed. Our band rocked it and it was soon time for the after party which was held in the treehouse! At the after party CLE served mini burgers and cheese sandwiches while we played beer pong and flip cup. It was the best weekend of our lives!
 

What is your advice for newly engaged couples?
 

Rebecca: Our advice for newly engaged couples would be to enjoy your engagement and not rush into the wedding. We were engaged for a year and a half before our wedding. Also, when people tell you to spend the money on food and the band they are not lying. The final piece of advice is to recognize that this event is not about the flowers or the dress or even the photos, but about you and your soon-to-be spouse. Carrie and I did a good job at this and I believe this is one of the reasons why we were able to have a relaxing enjoyable weekend.
 

We were also able to speak to their planner, Amanda Savory, and here’s what she had to say about their wedding:
 

Amanda: “When I first met with Carrie and Rebecca, I felt like we were friends already. Right from the start, our time together was very casual and informative, enough to where they felt comfortable securing me as their full-service wedding planner.
 

They were very detail-oriented and knew exactly what they wanted, but they also didn’t let the planning stress them out. Together they had incredibly good vibes that carried throughout the entire wedding planning adventure. It was so much fun to work with them which made it so gratifying to see their wedding weekend come together.
 

Carrie and Rebecca’s wedding was at the end of Pride Week which made their celebration even more special. They didn’t want it to seem like a traditional wedding, they just wanted their friends and family to have a good time and celebrate them. The food and design were super important to them because Carrie is a chef, and Rebecca is a jewelry designer. Everything from the color palette to the menu to the favor gemstones on each plate were carefully chosen. The overall design was important, but at the end of the day, they just wanted their big day to feel welcoming.
 

Their wedding day was very low key, there was not a lot of pressure. We were able to do a lot of the planning so early on and really prepare for their wedding day so that when it came to the big day it all went so smoothly. The whole weekend was a seamless process full of meeting their family, their friends, and by that point, I became really good friends with Carrie and Rebecca. It was a fast friendship where I just happened to be their wedding planner.”
 
Photos by: Lindsay Brown
 


 

Vendors:

 

Wedding Planner: Amanda Savory Events (formerly Bespoke Moments)

Event Design: Rye Workshop

Venue & Caterer: Cedar Lakes Estate

Photographer: Lindsay Brown

Invitation Designer: Suitesmith

Photo Booth Equipment: The Bosco Booth

Beauty: MG Hair & Makeup

Band: Elan Artists, performers – Suit and Tie

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Otterkill Golf Club wedding Sweet Alice Photography

Three things that make you ask “What the heck do I do with this?” at my wedding

Inevitably, there comes a point in the planning process where you’re going to be analyzing the smallest, and I mean smallest, of details for your wedding day. There are three specific things that are going to literally make you stop in your tracks and ask “What the heck do I do with this?”
 

It’s not your fault, just things you don’t really think about until that day or a few days before your wedding. If you have a wedding planner, chances are all this will be discussed with you. But if you are the majority of couples that don’t hire a wedding planner and do this all yourself, here are some things you need to know:
 
RELATED: 21 ESSENTIAL THINGS EVERY BRIDE OR GROOM MUST DO THE WEEK BEFORE THEIR WEDDING
 

What the heck do you do with your bouquet?

 

Ok, so this is kind of a two-parter here…
 

The first question should be “How the heck do I hold my bouquet?” Nope, it’s not in front of you. The correct answer is actually at your waist. You don’t want to hold your flowers in front of you because it blocks your face and your dress. Think about it. You’re not presenting the flowers to anyone, you’re just holding them there as an accessory. It drives me crazy when I see brides holding bouquets in front of their torso, but, it’s an easy, natural and comfortable move to make, especially when you’re a bit nervous. Just rest them easy at your waist.
 

The second question that comes up is “What the heck do I do with my bouquet at the reception?” Well, a lot. If you have a suite to get ready at your venue, you can leave your bouquet in there for the night. If you want to enter the reception room carrying your bouquet like most brides, you can assign a member in your bridal party, or your maître d’ to hold your bouquet while you do your first dance. Then take your bouquet and keep it as the centerpiece at your sweetheart table.
 

What the heck do you do with your engagement ring?

 

You may be thinking “wear it, obviously!” Yes, and no. The proper way to wear your wedding bands is the wedding ring first, then engagement ring on top. Why? Along with the tradition of your ring finger having a vein that leads directly to your heart, your wedding band should be worn first as it’s closet to your heart.
 

Now, if this is something that you don’t really care about, you can just keep your engagement ring on, have your spouse put your wedding ring on top of it, and switch them later if you want.
 

If you are superstitious or want to stick to tradition, however, you’ll want to wear your engagement ring on a different finger. Usually, the same finger on your right hand. Now, if you’re right-handed, your fingers may be bigger since those muscles get used more, and your ring may not fit. Same goes if you’re left-handed, the muscles on your right hand may be smaller and the ring may be too loose. If either of those is the case, entrust your engagement ring with someone you trust like a parent, who you know is going to have a small bag with them to hold it until after your ceremony.
 
RELATED: ENGAGEMENT RINGS: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW BEYOND THE 4 “C”s
 

What the heck do you do with your car?

 

Remember, you’re going to need to get home the next day. This one always makes me chuckle because this happened to us. It wasn’t until the day before our wedding when we were like “How are we going to get home tomorrow?” Trust me, you’ll be asking the same question. Your limo will be taking you to your locations, but what is your “get home” plan?
 

You have a couple of options here. One, hitch a ride with a guest. Simple. Just ask them first so they know to wait for you before they leave.
 

Another option is to see if your hotel or your venue will allow you to leave your car in their parking lot overnight so it’s already there the day of your wedding and will be there the next morning waiting for you. Usually, they won’t have a problem with that and understand your unique circumstance.
 

Do you have a question about what do with something the day of your wedding? Let us know. We’d love to answer it for you?
 

Photo Credit: Sweet Alice Photography

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Chosen Photo Nigerian wedding Vittoriaz on the Lake Jefferson Valley, NY

Hudson Valley Wedding Infused with Nigerian Traditions

Marissa and Anthony’s gorgeous Hudson Valley wedding was infused with elements from the bride’s Nigerian culture. A truly stunning wedding full of love and cultural traditions that’ll make you say “yes” to incorporating your own cultural traditions into your wedding. We wanted to learn more about the Nigerian culture, especially Nigerian wedding traditions, and so we asked Marissa to tell us a little about her wedding and how she met her husband, Anthony.
 

How did you meet?

 

We met in January 2013. Anthony’s friend and my brother worked for the same company and their co-worker was having a party that they invited us to. At one point in the night, Anthony and I played against each other in a game of beer pong. We were kind of flirty with one another while we were playing, nothing too serious. Right before he left, though, Anthony asked me to put my number in his phone, which I did. I remember I told him to text me so I can save his number and the first thing he texted me was “Hey beautiful.” We’ve been inseparable since.
 

What was your engagement like?

 

Anthony is a HUGE Patriots fan and at that point in his life he had never been to a Patriots game, so I decided to change that. As a Christmas gift, I got us tickets to a Pats Vs Jets game, which was on December 21, 2014. We planned to stay overnight at a hotel in the city after the game and have a nice romantic dinner. We had reservations at 8:00 pm so I made sure I had enough time to get ready. As I’m getting ready, I hear Anthony talking to himself, so I look over and realize he was recording a video of the beautiful view from our room. He then walks over to me as he’s filming. I asked him what he was doing he said he was bored and wanted to record me. I told him to finish getting ready because we have reservations, to which he replied: “We can’t leave yet.” I looked at him confused, and asked “What? Why not?” that is when he said, “We can’t go until I ask you to marry me.” Then got on one knee and pulled the ring out from behind him. I, of course, started crying and it took me about 7 minutes to finally stop and say “YES!” We went out to dinner and it was a very intimate setting, so I thought it was perfect. One of the best days of my life!
 

Did you have a wedding theme?

 

No, we did not have a theme. But our colors were chosen as a tribute to my Mom who passed away. Her favorite color was purple and I always wanted turquoise as my color so we made it both.
 

How did you choose the Hudson Valley for your wedding?

 

We lived in the area and so did our family. We wanted a venue that wasn’t too far for our families.
 

I love how you incorporated your culture into your wedding. Can you tell us a little about the Nigerian traditions you incorporated into your day?

 

I am half Nigerian so I wanted to make sure my culture was involved in some way on the biggest day of my life. In the Nigerian Culture, the immediate family wears the same pattern/print so all guests know they are the immediate family of either the bride or groom. My stepmother picked out the family print which is the yellow and purple print that you see in the pictures.
 

As for my dress, as I previously mentioned our colors were purple and turquoise. Our Bridal Party wore purple so I thought the turquoise would be perfect!
 

We did incorporate traditions during our reception. Before we did our first dance, I asked my dad to do a “Kola Nut Blessing.” In Nigeria, the Kola Nut is a sign to welcome someone. If you are not offered a Kola Nut, then you are not welcomed. So I had my Dad and Uncle bless it and welcome all of our guests.
 

Midway through our reception is when we did our outfit change and re-entered to traditional Nigerian music and were joined by the women of my family. We walked to the dance floor and that is when we had our “dollar dance.” This is another tradition where your guests spread dollar bills on the new couple, pretty much saying congratulations and showing their blessings.
 

So, now that you’re a newlywed, what advice do you have for couples who are currently planning their wedding?

 

My advice about planning is: This is your wedding, do not let anyone try and take over or have any input on how your day should be. Do not stress, it’s not worth it. Have fun planning, because the day goes by super fast! Anthony’s advice is to not stress every little detail, be patient planning and listen to each other’s opinions and suggestions.
 

What was the most memorable moment for you and Anthony from your wedding?

 

Anthony’s memorable moment was when he cried while I walked down the aisle. My most memorable moment was honestly introducing my new family and our friends to the Nigerian culture.
 

Photo credit: Chosen Photo

 


 

Vendors:

 
Venue: Vittoria’Z On The Lake
Photography: Chosen Photo
Makeup: The Hair Concierge
DJ: Extreme DJ Inc
Decorator: A-lyst Events
Cake: Homestyle Desserts Bakery
Dress: Leticia’s 

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