OBB Weekly – 7/23/19

Greetings from the lounge chair from the lobby of the Courtyard Marriott in Dayton, Ohio. This past week has taken being One Busy Bee to a whole other level. Long days on-site is exactly what my employer is trying to avoid and it is failing miserably. I have had a couple of nights of having eight hours of sleep or more but so far it’s been non-stop. I’m not even the one that has it the worst. But costs to travel and there are always benefits once you’re conscious long enough to appreciate them. Check out what you can expect in the triangle of Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio.

TRAVEL

AirBNB is definitely a good way to save money while traveling, especially for a group. Hotel costs can add up with taxes, resort fees, parking, etc. and are normally not equipped with microwaves should you dine out and cannot finish your meal. Our group got lucky with a great property on AirBNB in Petersburg, Kentucky. It was a block away from the river, had three bedrooms, two bathrooms, full kitchen, washer and dryer, wifi and AC. It was needed because it was humid. What a great property. I wish I took more photos.

A Dayton, Ohio AirBNB was a big dud. Going thru a part of town with boarded up windows on retail space, we parked in the driveway and walked up the steps with a very unstable railing to the front door. Upon entering, it smelled a bit funny. The padlocked closet next to the front door was the first of at least five doors locked. The refrigerator door had mold on the side and inside was a pizza box from a month ago. The ceiling was boarded up and stained with water damage, the dishes in the sink weren’t clean, open boxes of cereal bars were offered to us on the counter. The rooms were not what was pictured in the listing and the bathroom should not be used. Upon entering, the first tile slipped under my feet and only one of seven of the bulbs surrounding the mirror worked. How to turn off this one bulb was unknown to me. The switch could not be found. Thankfully AirBNB was very helpful and we were refunded our money. Good luck on your search.

FOOD

Before this post was written, I had written two posts about food consumed in first couple of days on this trip. My first full meal was from Valle Escondido in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. One of my first meals in Dayton, Ohio was at El Toro on Miller Lane just down the street from our hotel. I had the mixed fajitas again and they didn’t disappoint. The meat was incredibly flavorful and again, it was incredibly filling.

@werehungrytoo on Instagram

On the slightly lighter side, check out Hairless Hare Brewery in Vandalia, Ohio, about a 12-minute drive from the hotel. I recommend getting the Pineapple Tang, a wheat beer, and the pretzels with beer cheese. The beer has an 5.3% ABV and tasty. I typically don’t like wheat beer so this one was special. The pretzels were soft and were $4 for three pieces. The cheese sauce was $1.50. Worth it. Friendly service is also nice.

bappletree on UnTappd

EVENT PLANNING

So far, the only site I have come across that would be great for a private event would be Orchids at The Palm Court at the Hilton Netherland Plaza in downtown Cincinnati, Ohio. The art deco design and Great Gatsby feel made it amazing. The lit bar, high ceilings, well-dressed service staff and elevated platform housing a piano was spectacular. Three spaces are available. Read more HERE. Don’t forget, I am an Event Planner & Coordinator. Willing to travel!

MOTIVATION

With the lack of time to work on my own business over the last week, when I had a moment to relax, what do you think I did? I sat there outside Hairless Hare Brewery, a Ciderboys Hard Cider in hand and thought about the goals I have. I haven’t made any progress besides get a few blog posts up and I need to make more progress. If I had my laptop with me, I would have gotten started on trying to get more clients. I thought about going to explore more of Dayton but there wasn’t much to do that I could do at that particular hour. I packed up, enjoyed the country music on the radio on my way back to the hotel, retrieved my laptop and set up shop in front of the TV on the comfy lounge chair in the lobby. I participated in the weekly #InspiretoWander Twitter chat and interacted more on other social media channels. In true One Busy Bee form, I worked as soon as I was done with work and couldn’t stop thinking about it. It must mean I want it to be successful and can’t stop thinking about it. Thank you to those for your support.

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OBB Weekly – 6-25-19

Summer is here! In the east bay of the San Francisco Bay Area, it’s already warm before you leave for your commute to work. Posts of families going on vacation, summer weddings, bar-b-ques and cocktails by the pool and efforts to get that summer body are aplenty. What does summer mean to you? Do you have traditions you do around this time of year? What do you look forward to?

TRAVEL

This summer, my clients have visited Phuket, Thailand, the Maldives, Walt Disney World, and even Indiana for work. I was just in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, will be heading to Las Vegas, Nevada, London and possibly a cross country road trip to Maryland. It’s warm and my credit cards with travel benefits are ready.

Happy client is headed to Walt Disney World
Get these bands when you stay on property at Walt Disney World.
Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World
Casa Dorada, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

What vacation plans do you have?
Which credit cards do you have to help you travel?

EVENT PLANNING

It has been one year since Susie and Frankie got married at Stable Cafe in San Francisco, California. I am wishing my friend, Bride and Groom and their adorable daughter, Sophia, another amazing year together.

Have the gown but still need assistance with your wedding? LIKE my page here.

Flares Bridal, Walnut Creek, California

#WEREHUNGRYTOO

My condo complex doesn’t allow barbecue sets to be on our balconies so I don’t have a lot of experience grilling and will be without again this summer. The most memorable dining experience in regards to BBQ is International Smoke in San Francisco. It has been some time since I have been and will need to go back. I also have to try my friend’s BBQ. He does catering now. Follow my friend, Nelly! For now, I enjoy the grilled chicken on top of my salad at The Dormy House at TPC Stonebrae in Hayward.

Follow him on Instagram

MOTIVATION

How many scales have you gone thru? I am in complete denial of what my scale showed me on Sunday’s weigh-in. There was absolutely no way I gained more than I did in two weeks on my Princess Cruise to New Zealand and weigh more than I think I ever have. There is just no way. I just don’t look it or feel it. I’m giving my scale a pass and will revisit the issue next Sunday before a 10K race on Mare Island.

Ok, if that weight gain is legit, it should be a motivator and clearly I’m still at it. I’ll prove you wrong, Scale! As a matter of fact, I’m on the bike right now at the gym as I write this and will log another six miles walking around the restaurant for my second job. Because I’m One Busy Bee.

Follow on Instagram and view my stories of some gym sessions or doing what I can to work out at home on busy days. It counts.

I did 6.2 miles that day.

Until next week! Thanks for reading!

The Inn at Pasatiempo

Off of Highway 17 just before reaching the beach town of Santa Cruz, consider staying at newly renovated The Inn at Pasatiempo. Play golf nearby, finish up at the Back Nine Grill & Bar Restaurant and stay the night in a hotel room with a king size bed. For special events, they have outdoor event space for weddings and indoor reception areas with a patio.

Being from the Bay Area, I toured four venues in December 2017 as an Event Planner and Travel Agent. Location is very important. Santa Cruz is not San Francisco but couples can still have a destination wedding near the coast for a reasonable price. Every time the Sales Rep told me if there was a site fee and/or food and beverage minimum, I was shocked at how affordable it was. Do consider Santa Cruz county for your special event.

SPECIAL OFFER

The Inn at Pasatiempo is currently offering $500 off their $1,500 site fee for 2019 weddings. Let’s plan your special event!

HOTEL

During my tour in December, I was able to see a suite and standard room. They have a few buildings, a pool area and as already mentioned a restaurant and event space. Their rooms are spacious. After a wedding I worked on an April evening, I stayed in a standard room with king-sized bed. The bed was a bit stiff, the room was clean with high ceilings and exposed wooden beams. The bathroom fan was quite loud and the shower pressure strong. Parking was easy and there was one right in front. When reviewing photos and reviews on Yelp, be sure to take a look as to when it was posted. There are a lot of terrible photos of the property. Remember, they have just renovated and it’s worth it to give them a shot. Let me help you book your room. Room prices vary but for Memorial Day Weekend, a standard room is $186.00 per night or $325.00 for the suite. Travel Agents may have access to cheaper rates.

A nice touch. Thank you, Joanna.

Be sure to see my other posts on what to do in Santa Cruz, California. More to come!
Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk

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Amour

Happy Valentine’s Day to you! May you spend today with loved ones.

A special Valentine’s Day for those in an amazing relationship with their partner such as my beautiful Brides and Grooms turned married couples. I hope we celebrate your anniversaries for many years to come.

Contact me to plan your wedding and honeymoon.
While flowers and candy and cards are distributed, don’t forget to love yourself too. Past relationships have served their purpose and hopefully you have learned something from them. Continue to work on you, your happiness and well-being and you can give and love those special people in your life in an effortless way. 

Now, how will you do that?

Personally, I love my life. I am not in a long-term relationship but I have and had a lot of love in my life and I know I am very lucky. It would be wonderful to have a best friend to love and spoil, come home to and join me in all my adventures as a One Busy Bee. If it’s meant to be, the universe will make this person be known and all will work out as it should be. For now, I’m doing me. 
More travel and more yoga poses in fun places to come! I love that.

And take advantage of specials like this Alaska Airlines offer, good for today only! Let me know if I can help!

OBB Weekly – 1-8-19

It’s a new year and a lot of changes have occurred. My draft for the OBB Weekly post for December 18th was made the day before my beloved dog, Bevo, passed away. This post in a step in moving on and forward as it crushed me. A part of me will always be missing and searching for his love, heavy breathing and snoring. I have modified that posting and adapted it here for the first OBB Weekly post of the new year. At the time, we were house and cat sitting in the beachy town of Santa Cruz for friends vacationing in Mexico. From their social media posts, they look like they’re having a blast. Bevo and I always enjoyed getting out of town. Learn what you can do in Santa Cruz County! Thanks to the VisitSantaCruz Twitter and Instagram accounts for love on my posts.

Not Santa Cruz but not too far off. Bevo’s last trip to the beach. His favorite.



Travel
I have been coming to Santa Cruz County for ages. My dear cousin swam for the Banana Slugs of UC Santa Cruz, friends and I have had beach days at Seabright and dinner dates on the pier took place with sightings of sea life below us. There is so much to do!

You can camp, hike, go to Roaring Camp for a private event and ride trains including meeting Thomas the Train. There are wineries, a downtown area where you can watch the Santa Cruz Warriors basketball team and visit Capitola where I send guests to see the beach house version of the colorful San Francisco Painted Ladies. Looking to learn how to surf? This is totally the spot.


What do you expect to do for a beach vacation?

View of the pier and the Beach Boardwalk from the Dream Inn.


Concierge
Now, no longer working a desk at the Argonaut Hotel as of Sunday, January 6th, I can still provide the same products I did as if I did. Hotel guests from all over the world mostly want to visit wine country, Napa and Sonoma, when they come to California. We offer tours to Yosemite, Monterey and Carmel and Muir Woods. Sadly, Santa Cruz doesn’t get as much attention.

When guests want to do the coastal drive down to Los Angeles, I definitely recommend them stopping in Santa Cruz and visit the Boardwalk if they have children and Harbor Cafe to dine at a spot where locals go. Their huevos rancheros are delicious and they’re always busy and dog friendly. Get their peanut butter cookies for your pup.

I had the pleasure of touring the Dream Inn located right on the beach, has the tallest tower in Santa Cruz and is walking distance to the Boardwalk and the pier. Talk about convenience!

When you travel, do you take advantage of the Concierge services if they are available?


Event Planning
If you’re looking for a unique venue for a company dinner, intimate wedding and dinner reception, consider Shadow Brook Restaurant in Soquel, California. Way south of San Francisco’s cable cars, take the restaurant’s 6-person cable car down to the venue. You may take the stairs as well and enjoy the greenery and fountains along the way. 

Shadow Brook has many different rooms with a cabin but greenhouse like feel. Get married under large skylights or near the Soquel Creek, have a company dinner in the cellars room or have a romantic table for two on a landing on a staircase with a view of their stone fireplace. They do not have room for a typical standing reception and dancing but a first dance and father/daughter dance has been done in the space near their proposed sweetheart table.

More write-ups on my Santa Cruz Co
unty venue tours are to come! Plus, they are much more affordable than San Francisco venues if you’re looking to save money. You can have a destination wedding without having to book a flight.

Have you been to a wedding in Santa Cruz county?
If so, where?



Food
If it’s not a funnel cake from the Beach Boardwalk, I seem to be consuming Mexican food. Upon arrival, I stopped at El Jardin and ordered their special of the day, a pulled pork tamale with rice and beans. What I really longed for was my favorite dish already mentioned, the Huevos Rancheros from Harbor Cafe. I called in an order and Bevo and I walked down to pick it up. It was just as tasty as I remembered it.

Not hankering for a deep fried Oreo or Twinkie? Other spots worth checking out is Oswald’s, my friend’s favorite spot. The Crow’s Nest for sunset views and a busy bar with occasional live music. Lago de Como for Italian, who has the best carbonara I’ve had outside of Italy since I was there in 2016. Find out what else I thought was delicious there by clicking the link. This list of 50 Foods to Try in Santa Cruz Before You Die by Spoon University is also a great resource. Sounds perfectly fattening.

Are you a funnel cake fan?
If so, how do you like it?


Motivation
Some days I don’t talk about my blog to anyone or on social media. Then I look at my stats and I have a good day. I would say I am putting quite the effort to add unique content and using my own photos given my One Busy Bee schedule. I have had some successes but would love to have the attention of other bloggers without paying for the attention. How do I do it? I have received some tips from successful bloggers and it takes a lot of time. Reading this article of 9 Proven Tips to Get More Social Media Followers is a good reminder (Search Engine Journal). 

Almost a month ago, I invested some time in growing my Pinterest. I have 1,700 pins. Verbal Gold Blogger has 16,000 Pinterest followers. I have a sad 173. Verbal Gold Blogger pins graphics of her blog content. I don’t have a header on my blog posts. Should I? I should also update my Advertise page. 

What tips do you have to increase your followers?



ALSO, HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my late Lolo.
I miss our silly times like this. But definitely miss and think about you every single day. With wearing your wedding ring every day since you left to doing my first half marathon on Saturday in your memory (and in honor of other strong people like you.) I hope you’re proud of me and I will try to remember just how blessed I am because of your love, faith and you praying for me multiple times per day. I love you.

Honolulu Airport – 2006




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Susie & Frankie – June 28, 2018

“We’re thinking about having the wedding in Oaxaca.”

Inside I am screaming with excitement, sitting in one of the lounges of where I worked full-time. The place was killing this One Busy Bee with working 60+ hours a week and I needed something to look forward to. Susie has been a friend of mine since we had a business class together at San Francisco State University and is one of the sweetest ladies I have ever met. I remember the story of how she met her future husband. She’s happy, therefore I’m happy. And excited! However, they decided to have the wedding locally. But it turned out beautifully.

The venue was in the Mission area in San Francisco near their home called Stable Cafe. It’s a darling spot with indoor seating on two levels, an outdoor patio with fruit trees and greenery on the walls, a greenhouse area with a fireplace and a private room with easy access to the kitchen. Minah took good care us. Some rentals were needed based on the headcount but it was handled by Hil’s Cooking Catering


The wedding rehearsal was scheduled the day before and we nailed down timing, where to stand, pause, when to walk and how to stand. Their daughter, Sofia, was adorable and Nikhol, the photographer, was going to capture some great shots of this little girl. We went thru the rehearsal a couple of times to make sure everyone was positive they knew what to do the following day.

I love incorporating a moment for the Bride to have a couple of seconds to have it all about her during the procession. Susie was a little hesitant but I wished someone had recorded how loud 85 people shouted and cheered when she stepped into view as Jill Scott’s ‘He Loves Me.‘ My Brides are typically a little nervous about this moment but when I see that smile, I know they are glad they did it. Once she had her moment, her mother and father came on opposite sides to escort her to husband-to-be. 


Post ceremony, the Bridal Party, a close group of friends gathered in the cafe for a celebratory glass of champagne and group photos in the neighborhood as the guests enjoyed cocktail hour with a beautiful Latin band. It was great to see familiar faces. Susie and Frankie are very much loved. This was when we had to make sure the guests stayed in the greenhouse and dance floor area to transform the ceremony area into the reception area. Tables were moved into place from their secret areas by Stable Cafe and Hil’s. The ceremony backdrop was dismantled and stored. The Bridal Party returned, enjoyed some of the cocktail hour then it was time to line up again for introductions and start the reception. 


The buffet menu by the caterer was filling and when the head table wanted more fried chicken, it was granted. Folks enjoyed the food and I personally liked the mac n cheese, because who wouldn’t! Hil’s also had friendly service staff and handled the bar. Speeches were made and tears were shed, but laughs also filled the air.

The Bride and Groom didn’t want to make cake cutting an event so they slyly did so before they started with their very sweet first dance. You can feel the love. The cake by by Soul Desire Bakery was devoured by the guests. While guests were having a great time on the dance floor, I did what I could to stay productive and get things cleaned up.

Another beautiful event and another step in their life together was taken. So happy for you, Susie, Frankie and Sofia!


Custom artwork by the Groom, Francisco Franco



OBB Weekly – 12-11-18

Versus a newsletter, I would prefer the content to live on the internet that can easily be referred to at a later date and look back at when needed. One of my most popular posts is from years ago! This will be a weekly post highlighting picks of the week in all that is One Busy Bee Enterprises LLCTravel, Concierge and Event Planning. I hope you come back and click on the links for more information and it inspires you to book travel (with me!) and plan an event, again, with me.

With basically two weeks until Christmas, let’s get festive!


Travel
As a Certified Travel Agent and no family of my own, I took off on a Holland America cruise to the Mexican Riviera after the visits with family were done. Folks tend to escape the cold and take advantage of their children having a school break and head for warmer weather. It was great to sit by the pool on the Oosterdam and get in the water in Puerto Vallarta. Let me help you plan a getaway!

Do you escape during the winter months and holidays?





Concierge
A common gift that is given to us Concierges from vendors are cookies and wine. I am in the middle of the studying for my Napa Valley Wine Certification test and have an abundance of wine at home that I need to have a party so you can help me drink it! One of my favorite experiences recently was getting on the Napa Valley Wine Train. I had no idea the food was going to be so good, the service was great and it was a nice, gentle ride. NOT like Bart. It is also a Noble House Hotels entity, the same parent company of the Argonaut Hotel, where I am a Concierge at. Contact me to book your wine train experience with me with lunch, dinner and/or visiting 1,2 or 3 wineries. They also have special events such as Santa Train, New Year’s Eve events and tequila pairing dinners.

Does the Wine Train sound like a fun experience to do during the holidays?



Event Planning
Look up ‘holiday engagements’ on Twitter and you’ll get a mix of feelings on the topic. You will at least know one person that has gotten engaged or announced they are having a baby during the holidays. If it’s not you, be happy for them. My holiday engagement and marriage came to an end. But you might be invited to an epic party! For those planning for holiday nuptials, you may be competing with companies’ holiday parties. However, if you find a great venue like Thomas Fogarty Winery in Woodside, California, they may be already decorated for the holidays which may be less cost accrued for decor of your own. Contact me to help you plan your event!

How many couples do you know that got engaged this holiday season?



Food
Foodie, Owner of the Instagram account ‘werehungrytoo‘, former San Francisco restaurant Co-Owner and experience in the food and beverage industry for almost two decades (gasp!), I like food. And the holidays makes plenty of it available. I had two Thanksgiving dinners last month and the menus being released for Christmas dinners from San Francisco restaurants look delicious.

Which dish are you most looking forward to enjoying this holiday season?


Deep fried turkey by my Cugino.
Octopus Salad at the Cocina Del Mar at the Esperanza Resort in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
Cookin’ Cabo cooking class in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

Where to Eat Christmas Dinner in San Francisco – Time Out (12/6/18)Come get a 10% off coupon from me as a Concierge


Motivation

They say that if you aren’t working on your goals for the upcoming year, you’re already behind. And I’m one of them, and I know I’m not alone! Though I have already started promoting myself to get my calendar booked with weddings, I have a lot of work to do to reach a goal to be fully booked in 2019. I have quadrupled the weddings I have worked in 2018 from the year before and would like to do the same for the upcoming year, and travel a lot. Quarter 1 is filled with going to Orlando, Florida for my first half marathon at Walt Disney World, a familiarization trip to Fiji with Pleasant Holidays and Journese and my graduation cruise from Princess Cruises from Melbourne, Australia to New Zealand. But there are plenty of weekends left for weddings for this One Busy Bee



What are your goals for the new year? 


Happy Holidays from this One Busy Bee!

Gabe & Maria – Thomas Fogarty Winery

The last wedding of the year for this Event Planner and Coordinator is complete. I am so happy for Gabe and Maria. This lovely couple tied the knot at the gorgeous Thomas Fogarty Winery in Woodside, California on December 1, 2018.

Gabe and Maria did a beautiful job of doing majority of the work of planning this memorable event. They were very organized and stress-free and made the wedding day one of the easiest I have ever worked. I reviewed their work, brought up tasks and ideas for them to think about, put some ideas together for their honeymoon and recommended periodic status meetings to help with anything they may need. Otherwise, they did a really fantastic job. I didn’t have a lot of pre-wedding work to do and my car wasn’t filled with wedding items to where I couldn’t see out of the windows. Yes, this happens.

The wedding rehearsal took place at 10 AM the day before the wedding on a windy and chilly morning. The initial thought of how the wedding party would perform the procession was rethought during this time as it didn’t flow as I liked and there was a chance of rain the next day. We moved the starting point to inside the reception area, timed where they would start, stop for a photo, start, where to stand, how to angle themselves, how to hold their flowers and of course smile. “Don’t be that Bridesmaid/Groomsmen.” We ran thru it twice, made modifications as necessary and timed it just right. I figured out where I was going to stand, how I was going to queue the parties involved and more. We nailed it.

I relaxed the rest of the day as I knew it was going to be 12-hour day on my feet the next day. However, I was sure to pack my bag of usual goodies and items in case of an emergency – scissors, tape, markers/Sharpies, pen, lighters, lady toiletries, etc. I was out of my mini first aid kit and a mini sewing kit I had thanks to the JW Marriott in Los Cabos. Funny how that I needed both of these things on Wedding Day and came up short. I know better than that! I need to be better prepared. One thing the Bride and Groom did need were easels for their signage. I had three wooden ones and I laid down the backseat seats and loaded them in. 
As it was a rainy day and about an hour drive to the venue, I took off a little early just in case. I had time to spare so I took some time to review my timeline and other documents. Then it was showtime.

The photographers, McElvy Photography, beat me to the venue and Mike McElvy was up on a ladder adding lights to make sure the ceremony photos came out with the brighter background. I was super impressed with this husband and wife photography couple. Jack, I mean Mike, (inside joke) and Jill even came to the wedding rehearsal. They were so easy and a pleasure to work with. I hope to work with them again.

Kaitlin of Thomas Fogarty Winery introduced herself and looked incredibly relaxed. I was about to find out that it was because of their list of preferred vendors. She knew that the selected group for the day knew exactly what they had to do and knew the venue inside and out. Kaitlin was available for any of my questions and answered via text and/or came to find me with assistance. In the evening, Sherie took over and she also had the same demeanor. Over a break, (yes, I got not just one, but several!), she, Tony, the DJ and I had some time to chat. Some laughs were made but there was another reason why this venue was so great. Amazing people!
Toast Catering was also there unloading and prepping. I met their lady in charge, Mam (unsure of the spelling), and she was all over it. The schedule was taped to the fridge and things were being moved and progress was being made. I was introduced to Laura and Walter. They answered all of my questions, fulfilled my request for moving workers to the reception area to put down tables per the florist’s request and moving the heaters into place. I then later saw them running the show during the reception and killin’ it, plus making sure my Bride and Groom’s sweetheart table was perfect, they had their entrees along with their salads as requested and more. They were awesome. I even got to sit down at a table and enjoy the meal. The filet mignon and sauce was fantastic! The to go plate I enjoyed the next day of their salmon, massive stuffed chicken, veggies and rice was filling and flavorful, even as leftovers. That means something! I was super impressed by the quality, reliability and professionalism of the service staff. We had one boo boo where a tray of glasses hit the floor but thankfully nobody got hurt. Toast was also in charge of rentals. One
less additional vendor to worry about!

Tony V. with Elite Entertainment was great. He knew exactly what to do, hooked up the Officiant, also named Tony, with a mic for the ceremony even though he wasn’t aware of the need. He had a great personality and did great on the mic. He even spoke Spanish and kept the party going. He had Spanish versions of songs I didn’t know was around! I now know and want them as part of my music library. Por supuesto!
The Officiant Tony was also on top of it. He has experience and was a friend of Maria and Gabe’s. It was Uncle Tony to be exact. He was good, voice great ideas and took the lead well during the ceremony. May I also add, he was stylish in his deep purple suit.

The florist was made up of family members and were friends of the family. The arch was constructed and flowers were attached. The bouquets and bouttainaires were pretty.

TIP: If you want to save money on flowers. Fake ones are OK. Especially when they’ll only be seen for 20 minutes.

Corinthian Ground Transportation shuttled guests from the Courtyard Marriott Palo Alto to the venue. For an almost 200-person wedding, there wouldn’t be enough parking for each guest. Two trips were made and they were on time, reliable and friendly. 

The three layer cake was delivered and set in place. Only one layer was an actual cake.

TIP: The Bride and Groom were smart and saved money by ordering two sheet cakes to serve to guests. 

Walter of Toast called it a “cake weave.” I’m sure the couple’s pocketbook was A-OK with saving some money.

I love my job, my business. It is experiences like this and working with great vendors that make my job so easy. It was a pleasure to be a part of this special day.

Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart, you totally rocked. Everything was flawless thanks to you. It was a long day and yet you always had a smile on your face. Everyone loved everything and they were very impressed with how it all turned out” – Maria, the Bride.
Just want to say Thank you for everything!!! Idk what we would’ve done without you!! Sorry for the late text. But you’re the bomb!!!” – Gabe, the Groom.
Maria also says “I’ve never seen you in the zone like that before. You rocked it! Thank you!” I met Maria and most of those in the below photo maybe ten years ago through our love of music, specifically for the band Los Lonely Boys. Now she’s married! And the band Liked my Tweet to them that it was them that brought us together. I am thankful for their trust in handling their special day, but mostly for their friendship.

So happy for you, Maria and Gabe!

Wait, I’m not putting on the Bride’s shoes or bustling her dress? That’s what that silly face is for.

Money dance! Paying to dance with both of them. 
Had to do an example for the guests. Happy to be the first one to sign.

Are we in Hawai’i?

The Charles Dickens Christmas Fair – San Francisco, California

“We’re watching Mickey’s A Christmas Carol,” says a friend while being a good daddy. This Disney Certified Travel Agent hasn’t seen it, but I have been to the Charles Dickens Christmas Fair. Tickets were given to myself and colleagues thanks to a vendor of ours. The tickets were only good for the first two weekends so I made a point to make it happen during the long holiday weekend.


Do you like fish and chips?” This was the response to asking the gent that took my $12 cash to park my car at the Cow Palace of what to expect at this fair. Beyond stuffed from eating Filipino food nearby at Goldilocks, I rubbed my tummy knowing there wasn’t any room. Hey, men like women with a healthy appetite. Right? I didn’t think this would be the reason to come to this fair but he did add that if I did want to experience their fish and chips, I should go early. This is because as the day goes on, the pieces get smaller and smaller.  We did see a mom carry a tray full and they didn’t look good. 

Thinking we were early, one parking lot was already full and there were folks directing us to park as if were planes at the airport. Folks in the dressed to the nines in period costumes, top hats, feathers in their bonnets, big cloaks and cinched waists. The closest I could get to dressing up was wearing my long black, floor-length DKNY coat and to the knee Cole Haan black boots. 

Walking across the pedestrian bridge, we thought the entrance would be right under the words that said “COW PALACE.” Nope. Before moving on, we posed for a picture with the name behind us. “Say ‘Mooooo.” Kim took direction well and I should have kept the photo. I laughed all the way to the entrance.

To the right, along that building, down the ramp and to the left was the entrance. Past the ticket booth, I noticed these tickets were $30 per adult. Was it going to be worth it? Obviously this fair happens every year and there were already tons of folks there. We shall see.


Our tickets were scanned and were handed an old newspaper of events. With small print! Oh, goodness. This seems a bit intense. In the middle of the paper was a map. It was massive with shows, stores, places to eat and drink! Can you guess where our first stop was? Yes, the bar.

In the line, we observed the bartenders in their costumes and the way they communicated. They had English accents, were polite and incredibly expressive. It was going to be fun talking to all the workers here. You can’t help but smile. Given that it was a Saturday morning, we were thinking a mimosa. But the pour was the same amount of Mumm as a shot in a cocktail then filled with orange juice out of a gun. We decided to go with the red wine once I knew the white wine was a Chardonnay. I couldn’t imagine the Chard they would serve would be anything I liked. The bartender put two plastic cups in front of us and they were the size of shot glasses used for party. Can you imagine the look on my face? I paid the man $6 for our shots of red wine and tipped him $2. I know he has no control over the pour amounts. We definitely were not going to go for seconds.

The area was a bit dim, like you’re walking the streets of an English town filled the street lamps, trees and stores from hats and dresses, jewelry, places to eat and drink and even a kids’ area. One of the first stores we went into was inviting guests to send a telegram. You fill out a form, they write it out and they walk the streets looking for this person. If Kim, my roommate, wasn’t the only one with me, it’d be fun to have someone call their names throughout the venue. 


You could get old school black and white photos done, your profile drawn (including your dog’s via a picture) and even get your hair braided. It’d be great to have my hair braided but I’m sure it would cost $65. I sent a Snap (@bappletree) to my Hairstylist and friend, Justina. If she ever wanted to play with my hair, it’d be fun to get an intricate hairstyle done for the day.

For couples getting married and are Game of Thrones fans, this would be a great gift for them.

I personally enjoyed the hat stores/booths. I would have bought one but I didn’t need to spend $85.


We went down each row once and decided to head home. It was an experience and if I was in more of a festive mood I would probably enjoy it more. But go see it for yourself! The fair runs now thru December 23rd from 10 AM – 7  PM at the Cow Palace in San Francisco.


God bless, Everyone!

A Texan Elopement in San Francisco

This is why I need Bernadette!” exclaims my Bride to her new husband. He nodded as if saying “Whatever makes you happy, my Love.

What does a Day Of Wedding Coordinator do? Duties may or may not include, but not limited to: Button the dress, fluff the dress, straighten the veil, share your candy with the Bride, get just as excited when it’s time to get married (see SF Mayor Breed’s excitement too!) and much more, including try to stay out of the Photographer’s way. She also leaves them a nice note to welcome them to San Francisco.


I received a call at the Concierge desk I work at from an incoming hotel guest that were eloping from Texas. The Bride needed assistance finding someone to help on day of. “Well, I am one.” Next thing I knew, I was hired.

My Bride was on top of it! She was very organized and solely needed help finding cleaners to get her dress pressed after the plane ride, a vehicle to escort the Bride, Groom, Photographer and I around the city for photos, the ceremony and the dinner with cake and champagne. I also helped finalize the timeline and made sure her sister’s gift arrived on time and was placed at the best time and location as I saw fit. It was delivered to Epic Steakhouse with clear instructions on the boxes. I also aided with carrying whatever she needed, ran a quick errand for her and help flowers, helped her use the restroom, hold important paperwork, etc. 

I sent sneak peeks to someone special and he said I had a fun job. I do, indeed. 

Thank you to my Bride, Victoria, for trusting me with such an important day in her in life. Please contact me if you need assistance with your destination wedding. Willing to travel.

Happy Bride  = Happy Wedding Day for this Coordinator. I arrived to meet my Bride in great spirits and in even better hands with Felicia at Bun Bun Bridal on Grove Street. Felicia had my Bride’s hair styled and make up done. Felicia was friendly, sweet and personable. She gave me tips on how to put her veil in and ways to remove it. She also set her up with tools she would need for touch ups throughout the day and recommendations on products to remove the make up. I hope to work Felicia again!




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