Food Tasting- Love's First Kiss Menu

I ate several delicious meals this past Thanksgiving weekend!  It made me think about the big meal I had at our food tasting so I thought today would be a good day to write about that experience!

I must stress how grateful I was that we were able to do a food tasting before the wedding.  On the day of the wedding I was so full of nerves that food didn't seem very appealing so I really didn't get to eat much of the meal at our reception.   It made me very happy that I was able to enjoy the meal beforehand at the tasting. Make sure to ask your coordinator for a tasting!  I'm so glad we did!

The Food Tasting
Our food tasting had a bit of a shaky start due to an error in the scheduling.  Disney however was able to do their magic to fix the mistake and the Disney chefs that were supposed to be off duty came in just for us and made us an amazing meal in a short amount of time!  It made me feel a little better to know that if something goes wrong Disney does all they can to fix it!  

For the tasting we went into a room where they had a table set just for us! We sat down and looked at the different ways the napkins were folded and picked one for our tables at the reception.  

Then came the food!!!

All the food looked amazing and was delicious!  A different chef came out with each entree to explain the dish.  

We had selected the "Love's First Kiss" plated menu to try.  We were very pleased with it!

We started off with a bread basket but I forgot to take a picture of it at the tasting.  Here's a photo of it from the wedding!

Here are some pictures of each course!

First Course:  Petite Mache, Young Frisee, Sun-dried Cherries, Toasted pecans, with Port Wine Glaze & Shallot- Lime Vinaigrette.

I asked them if they could make the "X" into a heart for the wedding and they said they would try!  I was very excited at the reception when I saw that they did!

Second Course:  Roasted Meyer Lemon Chicken Breast with Garlic Jus, Roasted Garlic Potatoes, Asparagus Spears, Carrots, & Squash.

This was delicious!  All of us ate every bite!  So good!  

Third Course:  Tahitian Vanilla Bean Creme Brulee with seasonal berries.

I LOVED this!  The Creme Brulee turned out to be the food that all our guests told us was their favorite!

Then came the cake!  YUM!

We tried 3 flavors- all cake soaks-- Chambord, Grand Marnier, and Rum...more specifically:

-Vanilla Cake, White Chocolate Mousse Filling, Chambord Soak
-Vanilla Cake, Vanilla Custard filling, Grand Marnier Soak
-Chocolate Cake, Dark Chocolate Mousse Filling, Rum Soak

We all agreed on the same favorite- the one with the Chambord soak!  If I remember correctly, this was the larger tier of the cake, Rum was the top smaller tier, and we decided to have vanilla custard cake for the middle.

The food tasting turned out to be GREAT!  We had a lot of fun and really enjoyed it!  

I'm so thankful for those Disney chefs and staff that made it happen!  They truly did their magic to make us a great meal to try!  

Just Married!

Our wedding was a month and a half ago and it was a wonderful day!

Unfortunately I wasn't able to post my plans on here as often as I'd wanted to.  One of the things I learned was that the wedding planning really does take a lot of one's time.  I didn't have much time for anything else the closer we got to the wedding.  Now that the planning is done I have more time to work on this site. I hope to share what we learned from our experience, share the things we are happy we did, and more!  I just need to get it all organized so stay tuned!

Have a wonderful week everyone!

Budget Fairy Tale Giveaway!

My friend and fellow Disneyland bride Mindy started her own blog called Budget Fairy Tale!  I'm so glad she started it because it's awesome and I've become a big fan of it!  Her posts are so original and fun to read!  I loved her latest post called "The Knot Thinks Our Wedding is Strange, and I Do (K)Not Care."

This week Budget Fairy Tale is having their first giveaway!  It's a pretty cool giveaway too-  you could win your own caricature card from Cameoland!  All you have to do is help come up with name for the blog's mascot!

Take a look at this link for info on the giveaway.  It's easy to enter so make sure you check it out! 

Click here to read more about the giveaway:  Name Our New Mascot

Our DIY Invites!

For our invitations we searched online but couldn't find anything we liked.  So I decided I would attempt to make them!  We went to the Paper Source and picked out an assortment of items for me to play with!  We got everything in our colors- dark blue, white, and silver.  After that we made a stop at Paradise Pier and picked out some Mickey punch out items they have at their gift shop as well as some fun scissors that cut Mickey edges.  Finally we grabbed some postcards and a Disney notepad.

Here's a pic of the stuff we started out with.

Here's what we created:

The invite!

With it's envelope:

Inside first flap:

Inside (this one has no text because it was the first one I made, we printed the invite info on the rose paper in the middle):

I really love the rose paper.  It reminds me of Beauty and the Beast! 

We used an assortment of Disney postcards for our RSVP cards.  There's a pocket in the card where the postcard fits perfectly.

We also bought envelopes for the RSVP postcards.  Jared came up with the back of the RSVP on his own!  He put one of our engagement pictures on it and I love how it turned out!  

We did English ones and Spanish ones as well for my family.  We used the notepad for handwritten notes that we inserted into the invitations that went to the members of the bridal party.

I love how our invites turned out but I must admit it was a lot of work! We spent a whole Saturday with Jared printing invites and cutting silver paper into strips and me glueing & putting it together. This doesn't include all the time it took to label them all and tie the ribbon around each card.  We were so happy with the result though that the hard work was worth it!  I'm really glad we took on the task of doing them ourselves!

Sleeping Beauty Pavilion Renovations

Over the last few months the Disneyland Hotel has been undergoing a lot of construction.  It didn't affect the Rose Court Garden but the Sleeping Beauty Pavilion was completely transformed as well as the area surrounding it!  
Here is a photo of the Sleeping Beauty Pavilion and the hotel from 2010.

Here are a few photos of the Pavilion during construction.  I must admit it did make me a little nervous when it was completely covered.

Recently the Pavilion was unveiled with it's new look that matches the renovated area surrounding it.  

The changes don't bother me and I'm kind of excited by how the whole hotel is looking overall.  They also recently started doing work on the Neverland Pool which is near the Pavilion.

I am a little sad with The Neverland Pool undergoing major construction because I loved that pool.  But, with the changes that they've already made to the rest of the hotel I have hopes that it will look just as great and be just as fun when it is finished! Take a look at these other newly renovated spots around the Pavilion!

Trader Sam's across from Pavilion opened a couple months ago!

Tangaroa Terrace near the Pavilion is also now open!

The new Monorail slides next to the Pavilion

Our Disney Photo Book!

After we took our photos for the Save the Dates we decided it'd be nice to have them all in one place. Jared saw that they sell books on the Disney PhotoPass site so we started looking at that. It's pretty expensive compared to photo books on Shutterfly and other sites but we liked how the pages in the PhotoPass books could have Disney characters on them! Plus you could use your PhotoPass pictures from the parks! 

The site was really easy to use and we were able to make it look the way we wanted. You could add text and there were a lot of spaces for photos so we also used older pictures from different trips and our favorite places. We really loved the result!

Here's a few pictures of the book!

The cover:

The spine:

Inside the cover:

Some of the pages:

We really love our book! It was hard to pick what pages I wanted to post because I like them all. I think we will put our book on display at the reception (with a note that says it's just for looking at). We have silhouettes we got done at Main Street in Disneyland too so I think we might have these next to each other. We like our book so much we'll probably use the website again to put together another book after the wedding!

Disney PhotoPass site:

Engagement Shoot- Beverly Hills Photography

We booked a photographer for the wedding- Beverly Hills Photography!  They were on Disney's recommended vendor list and because they work so much with Disney, they actually have employee badges/passes for Disneyland!  They know the Disney wedding venues so well it made us feel confident they were the right photographers for us!
Lucky for us when we booked them they had a limited time deal where you get a complimentary engagement shoot after booking them for your wedding. We hadn't planned on getting a professional engagement shoot since we were happy with the photos we used for our Save the Dates but we weren't going to turn one down!  I'm really happy we were able to do one because it gave us a chance to get to know our photographer and a chance to see how their photos of us look!
I'm happy to report that we loved having them do our shoot and the pictures they took!  We picked Disneyland as our location for the shoot and although we had only a little more than an hour with them, we got many great photos!
Here are a few of my many favorites!


Dress Story- Part 2

I'm sorry it's taken so long to finish my dress story!  As the wedding gets closer, my schedule gets busier.
(To read the first part of the story, take a look at my previous post:  Dress Story- Part 1.)
After trying on dresses in California, I went to Texas to try some of my favorites with my family.  First we went to David's Bridal and I tried on some of the ones I liked there.  My family liked the same dresses I did but there wasn't one that everyone had a big reaction too.
The next day we went to Alfred Angelo after a trip to Build-A-Bear where my youngest sister got a new lamb.  The lamb went with us to shop for dresses!

At Alfred Angelo I was able to try on the Ariel and Snow White Disney dresses.  Ariel was a very beautiful dress with a lot of detail!  I liked it but it was a little too hard for me to walk in. I really liked the Snow White dress though and it became a fave.

Top- Ariel, Bottom- Snow White

I must add that at this Alfred Angelo I was paired with an awesome dress consultant.  She was so helpful and really went out of her way to make the whole dress shopping experience a special one!  She even played with my little sister's lamb and let my sister try on a big tiara!
After a couple more dresses I tried on my favorite dress from my previous visit to the California Alfred Angelo for my family to see. This was the one everyone seemed to love!  It is not a Disney dress but looks a lot like Belle's ballgown dress from Beauty and the Beast.  I tried on a few more dresses afterwards but everyone in my family seemed to agree that the Belle-like dress was the one.  I tried it on one more time and then we looked at veils and tiaras.  I ended up picking a tiara my youngest sister picked out.  I love the tiara even more because of that!
So my dress is picked out and that big decision is done! I'm not posting a picture of it because I want it to be a surprise for the wedding guests.  I'll be getting my dress in the mail in July.  I can't wait!

Dress Story- Part 1

So a couple weeks ago I finally ordered my dress!  It's sort of a long story but I will try to summarize it the best I can.
You can read about some issues I had with getting myself to dress shop here:
Where's the time gone and Wedding Dress Blues

What I ended up doing was I decided I would go to a few dress stores in California to get an idea on what I like and then I would go to Texas for a weekend to make my final choice with my family.  The few weeks went by quick but in the end I got my dress!

The first shop I went to was David's Bridal.  I was a little nervous that they would be pushy but luckily the dress consultant I was paired with was really nice and not pushy at all!  I took Jared with me because I really don't mind if he sees the dress beforehand.  He's always really helpful when we go shopping so I wanted him to be there.
I had Jared armed with both my phone and my camera for him to take photos.  He texted pictures of the dresses to my family as I tried them on.  The photos he took on my other camera I emailed to my family later that day.  It ended up working out pretty well!
The dress consultant was great- she let me try on every single dress on my list and gave me some space after I tried on each dress so that Jared could take pictures and I could get a feel for the dress.  It was a really nice experience!  There was even a dress I liked there.

Our next stop in California was an Alfred Angelo.  Here I was able to try a few of the Disney dresses- Belle and Cinderella.  I really liked these but the Cinderella dress was a bit too puffy for me and the Belle dress felt heavy.  They were beautiful dresses and so much fun to try on but they were not quite me.

This dress was beautiful but wasn't the one for me.

I did try on another dress that I really liked that actually reminded me of Belle even though it wasn't a Disney dress.  I thought it was the one but unfortunately the consultant I had was putting a little too much pressure on me to purchase it right away.  She got me to the counter to check out and place my order but I froze and told her I wanted to wait.  I'm very glad I did!
Those were the two places I went to in California.  The next two places I went to were in Texas.  I will tell this part of the story in my next post so stay tuned!

Save the Dates- Shutterfly

For Save the Dates we really wanted to do something affordable so we searched online for different options.  We looked at invitation sites and a couple of other sites that did Save the Date magnets but they were all a little more than we wanted to spend.  I started looking at Walgreens but there weren't any options on the Walgreens site that I liked.
Then one day at work I had to create an account with Shutterfly for a project I was working on.  Afterwards I started getting emails from Shutterfly every week about current deals or discounts they have.  While getting these emails and looking at the site, I saw that they did Save the Dates.  I looked them over and saw that they had a pretty good selection and when Jared and I looked at them together we found one that we liked a lot.  It was affordable, would let us use 3 of the pictures we took around Disneyland, and there was even a special deal going on that would get us a discount on our order.
The card style we selected had 6 squares on it in which you could insert 3 pictures and then use the others for text.  A lot of my family speaks Spanish so we used the middle text square for the date, another square for the info in English, and the last square for it in Spanish. 
We ordered 50 Save the Dates with envelopes and it only cost around $30.  When we got them in the mail we were pretty happy with the result.  Our only complaint was the packaging it came in.  It wasn't very sturdy and seemed slightly banged up but luckily the cards were fine.
Here is the Save the Date!  (I edited out info to keep some of it private but you get the gist of it!)

Here is the site for Shutterfly's wedding/save the date cards!

DIY Engagement Pictures

Originally Jared and I were not planning to get engagement pictures because we didn't want to do anything unnecessary that would be an extra expense.  After the 7 years we've known each other we have plenty of pictures that we love and are special to us.  We did want some new pictures for our Save the Dates though so we decided that we would try to do them ourselves. We don't know anyone with photography as a hobby so we made plans to have Jared's brother go with us to the Disneyland Resort to take pictures. The day before we went I emptied my little pink digital camera of photos to create as much space for pictures as possible.

The Camera:

We ended up doing one session of pictures in formal dress so the photos wouldn't look too much like our usual vacation pictures and then another session of pictures where we are in casual dress.  We took a lot of pictures because we figured if we took several photos there was bound to be some we liked and sure enough there were!
Here are some of our favorites of the pictures:

Not bad for photos that only cost us the mocha we bought for Jared's brother!

In addition to the pictures we took on my camera, Jared and I also got some taken by the Disney Photopass photographers around Disneyland.  Several of those pictures didn't turn out as great as we'd hoped but on our second day of taking pictures, we had a Disney photographer who was the best I'd ever met at a Disney Park.  He was in front of Sleeping Beauty's castle and he really took his time with the picture, making sure there was noone else in the photo and telling us how to pose.  We never even told him we were engaged or anything but he had us pose as a couple and the photo was our favorite of all the pictures we'd taken!

We really got lucky finding that photographer!  We really love this picture!

We got some great pictures and were able to use a couple for our Save the Dates.  We recently selected a photographer for our wedding and it turns out that they currently include a complimentary engagement shoot but I'm still really glad we took these photos!  They are all very special to us and looked great on our Save the Dates!

Update and upcoming posts!

I haven't done any posts in a while but it is because I have actually been very busy with the wedding!  Over the last two to three weeks, I have done my wedding dress shopping, ordered my dress, and decided on a photographer.  Before I start doing posts on these adventures though, I need to sort them all out and get them written down... so details on the dress shopping and photographer selection are coming soon!
I decided that until I get that done I'll be doing a post on the small photo session Jared and I did for our Save the Dates.  We went to the Disneyland Resort and had his brother take a bunch of pictures and also had some Photopass pictures taken.  We actually got some great pictures that we were happy with!
That'll be my next post coming up so stay tuned!