Real Wedding~Puerto Rico: Chasity & John

When Chasity contacted us to help plan her wedding, we had no idea that it would end up in Puerto Rico. We were originally planning for a wedding at their family home, but the couple realized that they would rather have a once in a lifetime trip to celebrate their wedding with family!! We love to travel and we love our jobs so when she asked if we could continue planning, we answered with an excited YES!! What better combo than to get to travel to an exotic location to plan a gorgeous wedding?!! Posh Petals and Pearls planned the intimate affair at the El Conquistador Resort in Puerto Rico. The couple flew all of their guests down to enjoy a few days at the resort and celebrate with them on their wedding day. We LOVED getting to plan this wedding and traveling to Puerto Rico to see it come to life. Becca Price Photography did an amazing job capturing the wedding!! Can we go back?!! Happy 1 Year Anniversary, Chasity & John!! Check out our Facebook Album to see more of the gorgeous images!!

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Wedding Planning: Posh Petals and Pearls Photography: Becca Price Photography Ceremony & Reception Venue: El Conquistador Resort Florals: Calu Events & Floral Designs  Hair/Make: I Love Make Up & Hair, Too Ceremony Music: Allied Music Solutions Bridal Gown: Bleu Belle Bridal Travel Agent: Four Seasons Travel Savannah

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Mother of the Bride

The mother of the bride is the closest guest to my heart.

Within weeks of my engagement my mom took on a multiple roles- mother of the bride (by birth), best friend (by choice) and stellar wedding planner (by love). The last role has been a challenge. While I do not exactly fit the criteria of a bridezilla, I am not the easiest, walk in the park type of bride. I am sometimes indecisive, lovingly laid back and quick to lose focus between all the embellished possibilities. There are too many options for invitation fonts, bridesmaids’ dresses, flower choices and bridal beauty styles. I needed mom!

To be honest, during most of my mom’s perfectly posh planning I was stuck in a bridal daydream.

Enter Ina. My mom is focused, ultra organized and incredibly invested in every detail. Since there were hearts on the programs, the MOTB ordered matching hearts for the cocktail napkins and menus. My mother knew that a flute makes all the difference during the procession. Apparently, the hospitality bags need to be packed with proper nutrition and a timeline for guests. Everything was planned with an extra touch of love and effort.

Brides often babble about bringing their bridesmaids for dress shopping, trials and various appointments. If possible, I suggest bringing along mom and cherishing the time you two have together. A mother knows her bride best.

Of course, there will be laughter, moments of stress and sporadic yet very happy tears.

Mom, remember when we picked dramatically different flowers on our first trip to the florist? Thankfully, I took your advice for the final arrangements.

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A stunning MOTB with impressive taste.

Remember when we left bridal boutique six out of seven feeling defeated? Would I ever find my dream dress?

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Despite minor frustrations, we always managed to capture the moment!

Of course, you must remember when I tried on the one? We both lit up. We had found the perfect Pnina.

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We said “Yes” to the dress!

With the big day just moments away, I will soon focus on meeting my groom at the end of the aisle. With that said, when I look back on my wedding, months and years down the road, I will remember the elegant belle behind every bow, pearl and sparkle. Thank you to my sweet mom for planning a beyond fairytale wedding. Thank you for devoting your time, heart and endless energy into our special day. Although we have shared many memories together throughout the years, wedding planning with you has been a very vivid reminder of why a mother is a girl’s best friend.

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I love you endlessly mom!

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A summer, timeless bride

On my latest trip home to the in-laws in Lancaster, PA, I had the opportunity to travel back in time as a 1920’s bride.

My journey began just beside the horse and carriages of the Amish country.

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helping me in, like a true gentlemen.

JB’s maternal grandmother surprised us with a romantic ride alongside rolling hills. I was swept off my feet and shuttled with my groom as if we had just exchanged vows. Despite my tee shirt, sneakers and messy hair, I felt the breeze and royalty of a 1920’s bride. We made a mock getaway in a “just married” all original Model T. Our speed was slow, our kisses sweet and our engine just bearable. I cherished the characteristics of the car such as the wooden floorboards and its antique, fragile structure- a crank to start.

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just like this Model T– marriage takes work!

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always, always kiss the bride!

A few hours later, I was surprised yet again by another family treasure. JB’s sweet Aunt Jane handed me a copy of The Bride’s Magazine from 1945 that belonged to her mother and was read in the summer months leading up to her big day. As a writer and a bride this gift is incredibly precious and educational. On a more sentimental note, the bride behind this magazine reminds me that I am following 68-years of marriage and sacred love. Like JB’s Mommom, I am a true summer bride.

At first glance, the magazine reads as a distant, pretty feature of the past. Weddings have certainly changed. For example, a beautiful, ruffled dress at Saks Fifth Avenue sold for approximately $250.00. Although a similar, conservative style most likely exists in the bridal department at Saks, I know the price tag comes with additional zeros.

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pages 80-81.

Price aside, the value of this magazine remains intact. As I carefully flipped through the sturdy pages of this treasure, I noticed that many of the articles address me, a June bride. Every year, before and well after 1945, summer brides take a leap of love down the aisle.

I was particularly excited about one article in the issue titled, “To you Bride of summer 1945.” Three paragraphs in, George Platt Lynes writes,

“To you —the girl who’s lost her heart but still has a head for romance… and uses it charmingly with one of the engagingly new bridal headdresses, like the ones sketched below, that outstanding American milliners are creating especially for you. None of them are bridal headdresses in the conventional sense of the word…but tempting, delicious little hats that after the wedding you’ll wear happily again minus the veil.”

Despite my quick judgments of brides from this era, I found the author’s writing edgy, flavorful and fashion forward. Apparently, women in 1945 considered headdresses that transitioned from a summer wedding to a summer soiree- “just pleasantly peasant enough to look delicious at a summer wedding, and after the wedding… pouff! it becomes a baby straw bonnet to work wonders atop a dark town sheer.”

Who would have thought that Mommom, a 1945 summer bride might recycle her wedding headdress for a night out in town?

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pages 78-79.

As much as this issue pushed barriers and pressed buttons, the conversation regarding headdresses and lingerie advertisements did not mask the domestic perception of brides. I’m glad summer brides of 2015 are encouraged to venture well beyond the kitchen.

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I suppose our current Bridal magazines still include recipes. Page 109.

I wish I could take that Model T, hop on a time traveling highway and head back to 1945. With that said, based my cooking skills, or lack thereof, I would have been a single gal. Nonetheless, I imagine a blonde, sans apron, Sarah blogging from a completely different perspective. I would incorporate poetry, fashion and wisdom from each and every decade in between Mommom’s and mine. I would mimic the charisma and charm of this 1945 bridal magazine, which promises a rosy future for all summer brides.

~Dedications~

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Thank you Grandma Yost for an unforgettable ride.

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Thank you Aunt Jane for taking me back in time to meet bridal writers, editors and elegant summer brides.

Thank you Mommom for sharing a beautiful bridal treasure. I will be thinking of you this weekend, on the warm summer night of June 20th.

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Packing for Two

I know certain women who always pack for their better half. They count socks, underwear and fold collared shirts with care. It just so happens that my groom has immaculate suitcase skills, while I frequently forget items and tend to take too much. Nonetheless, the title of this article reflects packing for two days, rather than two people.

Brides should fully prepare for the big day before the getaway. There’s no such thing as waltzing into a wedding. Typically, a bride will enter her suite with a week’s worth of preparation, bustling bridesmaids and some A plus assistance.

Wedding Day

Over the course of wedding planning I have accumulated a closet worth of bridal items. My everyday wardrobe has become wrinkled and cluttered, as a wedding sacrifice of sorts, while everything for the big day remains in pristine shape. It’s helpful to designate a closet or storage space where brides can congregate all items. Below is a quick look into my bridal closet. Exclamation points indicate urgency!

  1. Gown!
  2. Marriage License!
  3. Wedding bands!
  4. Ketubah/marriage contract!
  5. Garter
  6. Ring Bearer pillow
  7. Bridesmaid gifts
  8. Bridal flats/heels
  9. Bridal jewels
  10. Tiara/hair accessories
  11. Proper undergarments
  12. Something old
  13. Something new
  14. Something borrowed
  15. Something blue

As readers probably imagine my closet has been temporarily seized for the big day. Although I have done most of the collecting on my own, I did inform one lucky lady about my bridal treasures. Even the best bridal packer must have a backup plan, better known as a reliable bridesmaid. It’s likely that I will forget something of necessity just hours before the ceremony. I can already imagine my mid-makeup shriek as I remember exactly what was buried back in my bridal closet.

Honeymoon

If brides are jet setting immediately after “I Do’s,” most packing should be done in advance. I have been told that the bride is absolutely exhausted after the reception with a happy hangover. Here’s a numerical look inside my beach suitcase- a work in progress. If brides are heading somewhere less lazy and more adventurous than my island getaway, disregard the beach items listed below.

  1. Passport!
  2. Obligatory wifey tee
  3. Sunscreen
  4. Sunglasses
  5. Sundresses
  6. Beach reading
  7. Waterproof camera
  8. Flip flops
  9. Sun hat
  10. Something with lace
  11. Bathing Suit (x a few)!
  12. Cover Up

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My shower outfit and a honeymoon hat.

Considering the several suitcases a bride may have to pack, I suggest letting the groom grab his tux and swimsuit. With less than ten days to go, this bride is busy!

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Married to your Maiden name

Since I am just days away from becoming a “Mrs.” I’ve had to answer two questions like a broken record:

  1. Are you ready?
  2. Will you change your name?

In my mind, the first question is worthy of a quick and cheerful “yes!” I’ve been engaged for over a year. As much as I adore wedding planning, and documenting each decision, I’m completely ready to walk down the aisle. I’m even more excited and ready to reverse the runway as a married woman. The walk back with my groom means our marriage is official!

The second question, however, has required more thought and reflection. I’ve always loved being a “Drew.” I am forever proud of my grandparents who arrived at Ellis Island from Poland and courageously accepted a revised surname with the hope for a bright future. Diereczinski was far too long and complicated. From 1946 forward, my family embraced Drew as a way of life, rather than just a new name.

On June 20th, the Peterman’s will be smiling from the other side of the chuppah. Not long after I met the parents of my prince, John Benner Peterman II let me in on a little family memo. The Peterman’s are perfect and perfection is intimidating!

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Pretty soon I will be sharing everything with my groom.

But, will I choose to share his last name?

So what to do?

  1. Remain married to my maiden name…I do love Drew.
  2. Hyphenate?…Sarah Helen Drew-Peterman (a long, yet wholesome choice).
  3. Drop Drew?…The most common, conservative option, I suppose.

With nine days left and three options calling my name, I have realized that this question is worth careful consideration. Since writing is my passion, line of work and pride, I have considered the possibility of keeping Sarah Drew as my pen name. I know several women who maintain their maiden title for professional reasons, personal preferences, or a little bit of both. A last name does not define a strong, fruitful marriage.

Here’s my final thought: Don’t feel pressured to make a quick decision. Names can change, but hopefully the husband sticks.

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Learning to love last minute.

In most circumstances I avoid working up until the very last minute. I write well in advance of due dates, edit to no end and embrace excess time to make a change or two, if necessary.

Wedding planners, however, often work best up until the very last minute. With less than three weeks before our guests #meetthepetermans, I have learned to offset bridal busyness with excitement. Yet as hard as I try, I just can’t seem to dash the last minute madness. I have accepted that until our special weekend comes and goes I cannot escape e-mails from my wedding planner, modifications to the venue, flowers and procession. In order to maintain sanity, I’ve decided to embrace the rush with a plan.

A couple of last minute necessities…

Finalize songs with the band.

Two to three weeks before the wedding, the bride and groom should compile a lengthy list of songs for the band to practice. Our choices are certainly eclectic. Basically, we wouldn’t mind if Flo Rida and Frank Sinatra decided to duet. This bride-to-be believes that diverse song choice makes for an interesting night on the dance floor.

Confirm all glam appointments… 

and reconfirm.

Brides who are counting down like me should confirm all appointments at least two weeks out. Make sure both the makeup artist and hair stylist are aware of numbers. How many women need beautification? There is a big difference between four and nine. Also, check with your bridesmaids regarding preferences for hairstyles. Although beautiful, intricate updos are time consuming. Lastly, I suggest introducing your stylists in advance. The big day requires collaboration from every direction.

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Meet Carolos, the man behind my mane.

PS) it helps when your hair stylist is also a wedding guest.

Discuss the procession in great detail.

Review all aspects of the aisle well before the big day. Don’t wait for the rehearsal dinner to reveal the lineup. Some bridesmaids may have preferences regarding escorts. Grandmothers like to know the scoop before hitting the runway. It’s also important to run sweet additions such as flower girls and four legged creatures by your wedding planner.

Some may prefer an aisle sans paws.

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the real best man.

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Ultimately, the aisle needs to be well thought out from flutes to timing. Although surprising, the procession has been one of the bigger bridal pains.

~Last minute bridal madness is inevitable. Learn to love it!~

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License to Wed

About one week ago, I headed to Town Hall with my fiancé to apply for our marriage license. While I’m used to renewing my driver’s license and updating my passport, I was completely clueless about the process. To make matters worse, the lady executing our paperwork did not share my wedding jitters and casual humor. When she asked whether or not the groom was also my cousin, I could hardly keep it together.

A Polish bride and Pennsylvania Dutch groom? We were surely far from family.

Rule 1: however ridiculous, answer each question with composure. Brides, bring your serious, commitment face.

Documents to say “I Do.”

Naturally, out of pure excitement, I failed to bring all of the necessary papers to our appointment. Although hard to admit, I just may need my wedding planner for everything bridal (mom knows best)!

I advise brides to read all rules specific to their Town Hall/City Hall before skipping through the doors. The bride and groom will most likely need to gather birth certificates, passports and proof of residency, among other obscure papers. These are the types of documents usually buried deep in safekeeping.

Timing is essential. 

Pay close attention to the timeline for applying and obtaining a marriage license. For example, my town requires registering no more than thirty days before the wedding date and no less than seven.

A basic bridal equation:

No marriage license= no marriage.

Bring a buddy- AKA the witness.

Pick a witness to oversee the process, initial several forms and take an oath. I suggest choosing someone of significance. After all, acknowledging a marriage is an honor. We asked my grandmother, Gladys, to sign our papers and act as the witness. While I laughed over a few of the questions, she cried tears of joy. We struck the perfect balance.

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a necessary selfie.

Brides, don’t forget to snap a quick picture with your memorable marriage receipt. It’s certainly the best $28 I have ever spent!

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Guest before Bride

I spent Sunday evening of Memorial Day Weekend attending my cousin’s fabulous wedding. Ashley and Keith became husband and wife at the very same venue where I will marry JB in just a few short weeks. My one night role reversal from bride to guest was surprisingly liberating. It was a much-needed break from wedding planning.

Since my hair will soon be flowing like the brides, with a sparkling veil, I decided to throw it up in the highest pony possible. I wanted to rock the farthest look from that of the bride.

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Mission accomplished with a slight Mohawk.

If at all possible, I suggest brides attend at least one wedding before tying the knot. On that note, it’s better to be just another guest so that you can observe the affair with zero responsibilities. Bridesmaids are busy.

Below are a few observations from the perspective of a guest, rather than that of a bride-to-be.

Cocktail hour is social hour!

The ceremony is intimate. The reception is where family and friends surround the happy couple with song, dance and champagne filled cheers. I recently learned that the cocktail hour, however, is intended for the pleasure of the guests. It’s roughly one hour where couples, families and the string of singles begin an evening of indulgence. From this hour forward they will be eating, drinking and mingling well past midnight.

At first, I was surprised to observe that the bride and groom were out of sight for most of cocktail hour. Apparently, I will be intentionally hidden too. Perhaps someone was busy helping Ashley bustle her dress. The bride and groom most likely snacked before greeting their guests. I’ve learned that newly married couples rarely enjoy their delicious cocktail hour. They are far too busy receiving congratulatory hugs and snapping pictures. Starring in your own show is hard work.

Solidify the details of special dances.

I’m not the type of bride who can cry on cue. Although moved, I kept dry eyes throughout Keith and Ashley’s beautiful ceremony. It was during the father/daughter dance, however, where I became emotional. While a familiar version of Rod Stewart’s “Have I Told You Lately” belted from the band, I looked over at my dad and imagined our dance together.

My father has always been my dancing partner. Whether we are at a family party, wedding, work dinner or just at home in the company of two rambunctious Chihuahuas, we never waste an opportunity to share a dance.

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It’s hard to make us sit still at events.

Direct the band before your big day.

The ride home from Ashley and Keith’s wedding was spent discussing music. JB contemplated a few songs for the dance he will share with his mom; he is currently deciding between the iconic Billy Joel and the adorable Jason Mraz. The band at my cousin’s wedding drew a joyful, energetic crowd to the dance floor. The beats were popular, playful and catered perfectly to both the friends of the bride and groom and those from a (dare I say) slightly older generation.

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#AshleyandKeith2015

Dedicated to the magnificent bride Ashley and my sweet cousin Keith. You two make a magical couple. Although I will soon swap places with the bride, I know we will both share the dance floor for the entire evening!

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NAVIGATION