Monday, September 30, 2013

Alternative To Bouquet Throw & Garter Toss: Human Chairs!

Since there’s always a little risk for the lads and lasses determined to get the garter and bouquet in their clutches, we threw the idea of bouquet and garter throwing haha. Nah, seriously, because of our ages, our "not so young" single friends at our wedding reception may find it awkward to be invited to join in the traditional bouquet and garter throws. Besides, it would be quite difficult to throw my magic wand bouquet at that!
So, we played the HUMAN CHAIRS instead. And we're so glad we did!
We called the Groomsmen [who was supposed to approach the stage dancing “Gentlemen”]and called in the Bridesmaids & Maid of Honor who danced to the tune of "All the Single Ladies".
We asked the men to form a circle and to be in a sitting position as if they are “proposing”. Music is played. The ladies go around the circle while dancing and when the music stops, the ladies have to sit on the men’s lap. The lady who doesn't have a seat have to leave the dance floor, and will pull one of the single guys to leave, and so on until only two girls left. The last girl who is not able to sit on the last guy's lap receives the bouquet and she picks a single guy of her choice who should receive the garter.
Ping Olivare was the last girl standing and her chosen partner is Jomar Ramiso. Let's see if they will be the next to tie the knot!!

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Cash and Unique Gifts For Our Wedding!

For our wedding, we were thrilled that many of our friends chose gifts from our Bridal Registry with SM . But of course, we are very grateful to some friends who gave us generous cash gifts instead like my best friend Dearie Tan & family, Mayor Joel and Atty. Brenda Ruma, ninang Loida Morante, client Josie Atento, my friend Leily Tumulak from Colorado, Atty. Jeanne Serrano from California, Sister Fely Santos and my friend Judith Mayocyoc from Baguio. The cash gifts we got is significant enough to let us afford an LED 40 inches TV, LG home theater, 3 - in - 1 Canon Printer, Scanner and Copier, micro fiber pillows and still looking for what we truly need for our new home! We also appreciate many guests who "went off-registry" and gave us a special, personalized, unexpected gift.
Water Purifier and Ozone Food and Water Sterilizer from Taiwan are two unique gifts ideal for our healthy living and these are courtesy of my friend, business partners Ms. Doris Chen and Ms. Cristy Antonio. They will also be hosting us for our honeymoon in Taipei.
Speaking of honeymoon, we missed our ninong former Senator Joey Lina at our wedding because of an illness, but he texted us to say he is giving us an overnight stay with buffet breakfast at the historic Manila Hotel which he manages. We availed of the gift on my birthday [October 1] and so happy to stay at a Superior Deluxe room at the Presidential Suite floor with view of Manila Bay. We surely love the lavish room but what I really like is an LCD TV in the bathroom - and of course the sumptuous buffet the next morning!
I love this decorative shell mirror especially knowing how this gift journeyed all the way from Tacloban lovingly carried by my good buddie from law school Ms. Mia Arteche. She arrived early at the Manila Temple [but venue for wedding ceremony was changed to Estancia Hotel in Tagaytay] and so she missed my wedding all together. I owe you a visit soon!
Thankful for the stainless sauce pot and whistling kettle from my high school friends sisters Anne Banlalay and Maribel & kids. They were the very first items we've got to use with our induction stove gift. We also truly appreciate the glass dessert set from our wedding singer Alenea and her husband Herbert Furio.
I was thrilled to get a honeymoon gift from soon - to - wed [now couple Nilo and Lei] which was perfect outfit for our Manila Hotel mini-moon and fits perfectly in the native handbag and jewelry box given by my bridesmaid Del Ocado. A big thanks also for my law students Jon and Mitch Bernardo for the multi-purpose kitchen steel organizer and for the meaningful gift from Casimiro family - a framed picture of Jesus Christ for our kitchen! Surely, the gifts we received are wow-worthy and we truly appreciate the effort and the generosity of our givers!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Cupcakes and Cake Topper by Sofia's Cakes

Since our journey cake designs and adornments are all edible, we thought of having a cake topper that we can take as wonderful memento of our special day for years to come! We were thrilled to know that Sofia's Cakes, our wedding supplier for our cupcakes also does personalized wedding figurines. 

Cake Topper

We want the cake topper to be consistent with our picture - framed wedding invitations and photo wall so we choose a design where the couple are holding a picture frame. For a personalized look, the bride's dress was designed to look like my original wedding dress design and color of bouquet reflect our Philippine Flag motif colors of red, blue, yellow and white. For the groom's attire, it would have been better if it looked more formal since Raymond wore a vest with his suit. 


Since we already have our journey cake from my friend Raquel Delos Santos, we thought of replacing the 3-layered fondant cake included in our wedding package with Estancia Hotel with 100 pieces of chocolate cup cakes . This way, our guests will have a taste of our wedding cake and can easily take it away as celebratory souvenirs. To be consistent with our Philippine Flag motif, we had a mixed of blue and red butter cream cupcakes with a nice white and yellow flower design in the middle, while the yellow and white butter cream cupcakes have red and blue flower design in the middle.
I like how the cupcakes look like and how they were displayed in the cup cake tower. But most importantly, I love how it taste since my niece Shanara saved me two (2) boxes of cupcakes which I ate much later after the big day.

Friday, September 27, 2013

SM Bridal Registry and our Wedding Gifts!

Our wedding paved the way for me  to learn about the concept of bridal registries, and frankly, whoever thought of this idea is brilliant!

Gift Registry conveniently let us choose the gifts we want that agree to the budget of our guests, while letting the guests still choose to give "cash" or other gifts. Having a Gift Registry ensures that no same gift items is repeated, or in case of repeated items, we can exchange them for store credits and get the ones not bought for us.

I chose SM Bridal Registry (over Ayala Mall and Rustans) because SM has many stores nationwide. I set up our registry online as Mhe-anne & Raymond Nuptial with GR Code 0009-021136, and made our gift list from Sta.Mesa, Sta. Rosa and Bacoor, Cavite SM branches. The staff of these SM Branches are very helpful, and accommodating as we chose our gifts. A staff accompany us, take a picture of the gifts we liked and upload them online within 24 hours. We were given Registry Cards that fit perfectly inside our wedding invitation.

How It Works:

When guest is in SM Branch to purchase something for us, the guests proceed to the SM Bridal Gift Registry Section and present the card we included in our wedding invitation (or simply give our names and GR Code). The SM Gift Registry staff provides them with the list of our choices / gift lists. Once the guests have made their choice (from among our list), the staff brings the gift to them and wraps it for free. Also the guests are given a 10% discount for regular items and credit the SM Advantage points both to the guests and our card. The guest could also choose to have the gift delivered to our registered address.

This is what our bestman, Franco Advincula & his wife Minnie have done. They purchased us a gift at SM Megamall and we got a text message from SM Registry staff informing us about it.

What we got from the SM Gift Registry:

We got a handful of gifts from our wishlist and those are what we really like and were thrilled to see them when we opened the gifts! We love the Tornado Mop (from Richard & Ionie Baquiran), Kyowa Electric Convection Oven (from Mayor Tony and Cindy Carolino), Kyowa Induction Cooker (from Atty. Bogs & Bubbles Caingat), Turbo Swirl White Westinghouse Ceiling Fan (from Cong. Lawrence & Therese Fortun), King Size 4-piece Canadian Linen bed sheet (from Atty. Doug & Janice McAllister),  Kyowa Blender (from Grace & Alex Capitulo), Hosh 10-piece dinner set (from my bridesmaid Tes Calingacion), and Hosh 20-piece dinner set (from my good friend Grace Gannaban). Super thank you everyone for your thoughtful gifts!

For the cash gifts that we received, we will be using them to buy those gifts in our wishlist that were not bought for us! Another convenience brought about by having a Gift Registry!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Our Principal Sponsors

For LDS weddings which is usually held inside the temple, there are only two witnesses who signs the marriage contract. So when we handed out our invitations, we hand-picked sixteen (16) of our friends VIPs to sit at the Principal Sponsors table during our planned ring ceremony and wedding reception.  They will be special witnesses and include my high school scholarship sponsor former Senator, (1Atty.Jose D. Lina, Jr.; Pres. Sergio Osmena High School Alumni,  (2Ms. Loida Morante from Australia; incumbent Congressman of Cagayan de Oro City and my boss at the Bureau of Immigration and dean at the San Sebastian College of Law, (3Atty. Rufus Rodriguez;  incumbent Representative of the Second District of Zambales and my former classmate (4Atty. Cheryl Deloso – Montalla; Philippines Area Legal Counsel of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter – Day Saints, (5Atty. Douglas McAllister and his beautiful wife, (6Ms. Janice McAllister; incumbent Congressman of the First District of Agusan Del Norte, (7Atty. Lawrence Lemuel Fortun with his wife (8Ms. Therese Fortun; incumbent and the outgoing Municipal Mayor of Sta. Maria Laguna, couple (9Atty. Antonio Carolino and (10Atty. Cindy Valdecantos – Carolino; re-elected Municipal Mayor of Rizal, Cagayan, (11Atty. Joel Ruma with his beautiful wife, (12) Atty. Brenda Ruma; sponsor of our wedding invitations and photowall, (13Mr. Ruperto Delacruz and (14Ms. Susie Delacruz and last but not the least of our couple pairs of sponsors is (15Mr. Manny Baul and (16) Ms. Theresa Baul.

But three (3) days before the big day and without yet the sealing clearance to allow us to marry in the temple, we were constrained to have a civil wedding ceremony instead of just a ring ceremony, in the same venue. This means that the eight (8) friends VIPs sitting at the Principal Sponsors' table, regardless of age, suddenly become our instant "ninongs" and "ninangs" officially.
L-R Ms. Therese Fortun, Mayor Cindy Carolino, Ms. Loida Morante, Ms. Janice Mc Allister
Atty. Douglas Mc Allister, Mayor Tony Carolino, Mr. Pert Dela Cruz & Cong. Lawrence Fortun
We are so happy and privileged to have these distinguished and honorable friends as our "godparents", whose marriage we will emulate as we go through our married life. We will keep their advice to heart so we can be together ... forever. 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Our Journey Cake by Raquel Delos Santos

photo by Alain Atienza Tagpuno
The wedding cake has always been the star of every wedding since it is believed to be a fertility symbol. It became a tradition to pile up several small cakes, one on top of the other, as high as they could, and the bride and groom would kiss over the tower and try not to knock it down. If they were successful, it meant a lifetime of prosperity.

While I do not want to be traditional, I really like our wedding cake to be a star and reflect our story. I thought of a Cake  that will showcase our two decades journey as a couple. 
Photo by Mc Joseph Casimiro

So Our Journey Cake was born! It was a love gift from my baker friend Raquel Delos Santos. I have always love Ate Raquel's cakes (and she even taught me how to bake), so I was thrilled that she is gifting us our wedding cake! 

The idea is to have a four - layered white fondant cake, with a road to symbolize our journey. In each layer is a vehicle in our color motifs - Philippine Flag of red, blue, yellow and white. On the first layer is a blue jeepney since Raymond and I met on June 12, 1991 inside the University of the Philippines Diliman campus and the UP Ikot jeepney there was blue. After two decades of separation, we met again on June 29, 2012 and Raymond visited me at home with his white motorcycle. Since then we have been together aboard our red SUVs and our goal is to buy a yellow Genesis coupe as Managers of Forever Living!

Thank you ate Raquel for this thoughtful and meaningful gift!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Guestbook Alternative: Guitar

Our Guitar Guestbook Alternative

Music played an important part of our dating years. Raymond used to bring me to Yamaha World Band Explosion concerts in 1991. He is also a lead soloist of the band Radio Crave and plays the guitar very well. When we met again last year (July 2012), he serenaded me and composed songs for me that truly brought back memories of yesteryears. To incorporate music in our wedding events, I thought of a Guitar as Guestbook alternative.

Bridesmaid Aimee Fernandez with our Guitar Guestbook.
 Picture taken by Groomsman Mc Joseph Casimiro
I have an old guitar I wasn't using much but didn't want to let go, do the trick. Then got some pens from National Bookstore that could write on all surfaces like wood. Viola, I have a guestbook that doesn't cost anything but was a sure hit! 

Our Guitar Guestbook Always Put Us In Tune!

More, I don't need to find a place where to store it since I can line it up with Raymond's guitars and could right away reminisce our big day!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Supplier's Review: Estancia Hotel Resort Tagaytay

In front of the Hotel Lobby.
Estancia Hotel Resort Tagaytay is the venue for both our last-minute wedding ceremony (instead of just a ring ceremony) and our wedding reception. We couldn't be happier with our choice as it lives up to being the perfect venue as we thought it would be when we stumbled upon it in July 2013!

Wedding Ceremony
As a hands-on couple, we decided not to hire a wedding coordinator before or during the wedding. We wouldn't be able to pull it off though without the huge help of Tracy, the Estancia Hotel coordinator. She was our contact from the very start and she is such a darling. 

Reception Venue Design

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Pre - Nup Video With Our Theme Song "All of Me"

The pre-nup video was made by our official photographer/videographer Alain Tagpuno Atienza and he gave me my own DVD copy. But since I'm no techie, I didn't know how to upload it on this blog so I'm using the video taken on my cellphone when this was shown during our wedding reception last September 21, 2013.

When I heard "All of Me" by BLAKE, I knew right away that this is our wedding song!  It talks about making vows for eternity and that "This life is short and precious, A one way ticket ride. I thank you for the journey, I know you're on my side. And we are only here once, I'm glad we shared this day. Of knowing something special, That will never go away". Ahhh, that makes me blush --

Here's the complete lyrics!


The first day that I met you

I think I always knew
That you were meant to be the one
And then the feeling grew
With God and friends my witness
Our love will never die
I take the gift you gave me
Don't need to question why

For all the faults I'm made of
For all the wrongs I do
I'm not asking you to judge me
Just be true

All of me
Is what I give to you
And everything I have
I wanna share with you
And with this ring
For all eternity
I make this vow
When I give you all of me

This life is short and precious
A one way ticket ride
I thank you for the journey
I know you're on my side
And we are only here once
I'm glad we shared this day
Of knowing something special
That will never go away

For all the faults I'm made of
And all the wrongs I do
I'm not asking you to judge me
Just be true

All of me
Is what I give to you
And everything I have
I wanna share with you
And with this ring
For all eternity
I make this vow
When I give you all of me

All of me
That's what I give to you
And everything I have
I'm gonna share with you, yeah
And with this ring
I give for all eternity
My love
I make this vow

All of me
Is what I give to you
And everything I have
I wanna share with you
And with this ring
For all eternity
I make this vow
When I give you all of me
I give you all of me

My Wedding Day Looks by The Ellis Effect!

photo taken by Alain Atienza Tagpuno at our
Executive Room in Estancia Hotel Resort
Getting sick a few days before our big day added a ton to my already overwhelming wedding related anxieties.  My eyes have dark circles and are puffy due to a week-long sickness. Worst, I am not fond of make ups and have not worn any mascara or false eyelashes before so I was all teary - eyed when I had my make up trial run with Xairene a week before my wedding. Unfortunately, the trial make - up duo did not set in well as it was quite heavy according to my friends.

I became more worried. My eyes are worst than they were during the trial run, so I'm not sure how Xairene would be able to hide the bulges. She gave me another trial so she could work around my heavy eye bags. One of the looks was already acceptable to friends if I remove my false eyelashes.

photo courtesy of Tyrene Ellis Orais

Two (2) days before the event, Xairene got a job offer that made her unavailable on our wedding day and she was constrained to back out. Luckily though, my hubby-to-be Raymond, came across with his former office mate at Convergys, and she now happens to be an accomplished make - up artist.

Tyrene Ellis Orais is a freelance make up artist behind The Ellis Effect.She lives and works in Cavite & Manila, and has worked with top models, celebrities and clients for their bridal look. I only met her on the actual wedding day at Estancia Hotel Resort but the connection was instant! She is very pleasant and pretty. I had a first taste of an airbrush make - up, and her colleague Mary Praisen Obrique did my hair. 

picture taken by our official photographer Alain Atienza Tagpuno

I feel really beautiful and confident with my looks. Tired eyes are gone and I truly feel like I am a star of my wedding!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Parting and our Wedding Date Two Decades After!

Raymond was called to serve a mission in Philippine Cagayan de Oro Mission from September 23, 1991 - September 23, 1993. After his mission, I was already in law school and he felt I would be better off without him so I have not seen him since then. It was only last year, June 29, 2012, when we saw each other again because of Facebook. When we met , we both felt we haven't lost touch! It was like seeing him again after returning from mission and took off where we left off. We got engaged last June 12, 2013 so the wedding is September 21, 2013!

On This Day...

"On this day", anniversary of Martial Law, join us as we start out our life together like we always dreamed and start a new journey, a journey that would lead us to forever…