Tuesday, December 22

Featured | San Francisco Brides Magazine Winter 2009 Article

Brittani and I are busy here at our last day at the office before our holiday vacations finishing up all the last minute details for the New Year's Eve wedding, and some of our late winter/early spring weddings. It is so nice remembering all the wonderful weddings we worked on this year, and the excitement of the weddings to come in 2010. We have so many great couples we are working with, we are truly thankful for all of them!

Before we sign out for 2009, I wanted to share this article that I was quoted in for the new issue of San Francisco Brides Magazine about the rise of restaurant weddings. They really have become a trend, and one that I don't think will fade out. Restaurants offer a lot of bonuses to those couples looking for a more streamlined celebration, and with the restaurants we have here in the San Francisco Bay Area, you simply can't go wrong with the food you will be serving your guests! I love working all types of venues, but for those smaller and more intimate weddings, restaurants are definitely a nice way to go.

You can check out the magazine on newsstands now.

Wishing you a wonderful holiday!!

Thursday, December 17

Keeping Holiday Traditions

Our little office has been buzzing this month! So many new weddings have been signed, holiday cards have been sent out, and now we get ready to close up the office next week for 12 days to take a break and enjoy this time with our families. I will be working still, as we have a big festive wedding on New Years Eve for one of my favorite couples, it is going to be a blast!

During this time of year though, we sometimes get caught up in the commercial side of the holidays, and forget the things that matter, like our families, friends and traditions. I am a huge believer in keeping traditions, and I know it can be hard sometimes to make time or spend the money on them, but in the end, it is so worth it. I thought I would share some of my traditions, since I am a self proclaimed holiday nerd, and this time of year just brings me so much happiness!

One thing that I have done since I was a little girl, and bought the same type of thing for my son when he was little, was a felt handmade advent calender to hang every year. When my sister and I were little we would literally have full on fights about who got to put santa (the last ornament) on the advent tree. It was ridiculous, but we loved it anyway. My son is 16 now, and he still gets excited when I put it up, and makes sure every morning to put the next ornament on the tree. It makes me smile to know there is still a little boy in there!

Another thing that we started doing in 2001 was having a Sunday Open House party at our home. We have a small place, but we invite everyone over to watch football, and I love it. I cook all day, put out more food then anyone would be able to eat, and always make a festive cocktail. I usually make my Reese's Peanut Butter Cup cookies, and package them up in takeaway packages. They are delicious, and usually is why I think most people come by, since I give them out a sack to take home when they leave. This year there was some dissapointment, since my baking day was instead spent in the ER having an iv in my arm to re-hydrate after an all night bout of food poisoning. The party still went on, but the cookies didn't make it!

My favorite tradition is one my boyfriend and I started in nine years ago during our first year of dating. We book a hotel room in Union Square about a week before Christmas, go out shopping, look at all the holiday windows, and then kick back for a late night dinner at one of the amazing restaurants we have here in San Francisco. We then head up to the Sir Francis Drake Hotel's Starlight Room for the breathtaking views and all around funniness that is the Starlight Room, sip champagne, and enjoy our night. We usually get up the next morning for some more shopping, as most of the stores open rather early, and then head home later in the afternoon with our loot. Union Square is just beautiful during the holidays, with the ice skating rink in the center of the square, and the light displays everywhere. It really just puts me in the holiday spirit and also let's us spend some time together before the craziness that the holiday brings with two large families.

I always feel it is fun to start a new tradition, especially for all my couples and their new lives together. This year I am "borrowing" our usual Christmas Eve tradition from my boyfriends' mom, since she is hosting Christmas dinner at her place the next day for about 40 people, Christmas Eve was going to be too much. So, I decided to take it over this year, and I'm excited to serve crab, homemade ravioli's and spanakopita.

Whatever and however you spend your holidays, we hope that you have lots of love, laughter and joy! Since our offices will be closed until Jan 4th, we won't be posting until then, but can't wait to share all that is going on at Dream A Little Dream Events in 2010!

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 15

Raquel + Paul | Tulip Garden & Terra SF | Sept 5

Raquel and Paul had a lovely day to celebrate their wedding here in San Francisco with this truly chic and urban city wedding. From starting with pre wedding photos at Hotel Vitale's clean and modern backdrop, to the whimsical ceremony at the Queen Wilhelmina Tulip Garden in Golden Gate Park, ending at the urban art gallery Terra SF. The details were perfect, the bride and groom estactic, and everything went flawlessly.

Instead of a standard sit down dinner, they opted for five different active stations of food for their guests to ensure that they could fit 200 of their friends and family in the venue. They went with very traditional ethnic foods, and topped the meal with two cakes, candies and desserts. The room glowed, and the dancing went late into the evening with everyone on the dance floor, or resting in the lounge watching their continuous slideshow.

Here is a sampling of some of the amazing photos taken by Tinywater Photography. You can view more on their blog as well. Enjoy!

The vendors that made this day happen were:
Ceremony Venue: Queen Wilhelmina Tulip Garden
Reception Venue: Terra SF
Photographer: Tinywater
Transportation: Coach USA

Happy Planning!

Wednesday, December 9

My Favorite Holiday Cocktail

It has been busy around the Dream A Little Dream Events office lately! Besides signing and planning weddings for 2010, we had our next Dream Bridal Tour tickets released, picking finalists for the SF Dream Wedding Giveaway, sending out holiday cards, and don't even get me started on all the parties!

This weekend I am doing my annual open house at my home in Marin. We just put out tons of food, watch football and have lots of beverages. I always make one cocktail that can be easily refreshed and self served, since I'm never a fan of having to offer every single liquor and mixer out there. I am still putting together the food menu, but getting some help from La Boulange Catering that just launched their online ordering catering menu. I just love when throwing a party can be this easy!

Anyway, I've decided to serve the same cocktail that I did last year. It is so incredibly festive and yummy, it was a hit at both the office and home parties that I just had to do it again. If you want a simple cocktail that you don't need to much too much effort into, I suggest you try this.

Cranberry Chill-ade - Makes about 6 servings (you can double, triple or quadruple the recipe as needed)

1 cup cranberry juice
1 cup lemon juice (about 6 lemons)
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups water
1 cup ice
1 cup vodka
1 red jalapeno pepper (we did half red and half green)

1) In a large bowl combine the lemon juice, sugar and cranberry juice
2) Stir with a wooden spoon until the sugar is dissolved
3) Add the water
4) In a pitcher, fill the bottom with the ice
5) Pour the vodka in first, then mixture over it
6) Add the peppers, stir and serve

It is so simple, and all you need is a beautiful pitcher, some festive glassware, and you are done. I always make a few batches and leave them in the fridge during the party so when it runs out, I can quickly add more ice and mixture, and I can get back to the party.

This time of the season is wonderful, so enjoy it, and if you are worried about throwing together a party or have any questions or comments, let me know!

Happy Planning!

Tuesday, December 1

Dream Bridal Tours - San Francisco Jan 24th Tickets Released

I am so excited about our upcoming fourth installment of the Dream Bridal Tours in San Francisco on January 24, 2010! We even have a fresh new website where you can find all the details you need. This is going to be our biggest and best ever, with an awesome and swanky champagne brunch to start the day. Tickets have been released today, and if you get them before 12/15/09, use code 'blog' to save $10. Get yours before the holidays when they are sure to sell out!

Visit our ticketing website to purchase your tickets, or follow us on Twitter to find out when the next tours will be and the new locations we will be coming through this year!

Happy Planning!

Monday, November 30

Michelle + Kristian | Madrona Manor | Oct 24

We were so excited to get this wedding back from one of our favorite photgraphers, Janae Shields. Brittani coordinated this wedding, as I was one of the lucky guests to be able to attend, being that Michelle is one of my dear friends. It was a stunning late October afternoon wedding in the country setting of Healdsburg at the Madrona Manor. The weather couldn't have been better, and the bride more stunning. The vendors worked together so well, and I can personally say that the food was hands down amazing. As a guest and professional, I notice everything at weddings, and this wedding could not have been more smooth and memorable. Congrats to Michelle and Kristian!

Some of my favorite images are below, but you can view the entire slideshow here.

The vendors that brought this wedding together were:

Venue and Catering: Madrona Manor, Healdsburg
Photographer: Janae Shields Photography
Florist: Dragonfly Floral
Djay: Noel with Perfect Day Music
Cake: Jill Branch from Branching Out Cakes
Harpist: Bertina Mitchell from Sound of Harp
Bagpiper: Lynne Miller from House of Bagpipes

Happy Planning!

Thursday, November 26

Happy Turkey Day!

Yay! My favorite holiday of the year is finally here, and I'm up bright and early writing on my blog!?! Anyway, just wanted to wish everyone a wonderful holiday with your loved ones, and I can't wait to share some pictures on how my table scape turns out. The place cards are absolutely adorable, as well as the candles and other goodies I got to make our family table festive.

In the meantime, this weekend is a great time to purchase your holiday cards, as we just did through Tiny Prints. From now until the 28th you can save up to $40 sitewide by using the code THANKSALE. I purchased both my personal and business holiday cards this week, and I can't wait for them to arrive! Nice thing to do as well is order the matching return address labels to really make your cards stand out, and use festive colored ink to hand address them.

Enjoy your holiday, and I will be back to blogging on Monday with the information on the ticket release for the January 24th bridal tour on Tuesday!

Happy Planning

Thursday, November 19

Giving Thanks: Making the Simple Things Special

Ever since I was a little girl, Thanksgiving was always my favorite holiday. For anyone that knows me, I love food, especially the comfort food that my Mom prepares on Thanksgiving. But, that wasn't the only reason. It meant taking the time away from the everyday grind to be with family and friends, watching football and eating and enjoying each other for an entire day. Computers aren't on, cell phones are tucked away, and the true meaning of holiday is fully embraced.

When I was 8, my Mom enrolled me in a calligraphy class to 1) try and get me out of the house, and 2) to try and get me to be right handed. Neither worked. I'm a true homebody, and I will forever be a lefty. The great thing though is that one year of calligraphy classes brought me to the career I am in today, and it always gave me the job of making the place cards for Thanksgiving and other holiday dinners. I loved it! I would grab stickers, glue, paper and all my best pens and create the dining table scape. I felt so cool, and the funny thing, my Mom actually keeps all the place cards I ever made in a drawer. It is sweet looking back at them, especially remembering people that are no longer with us.

So, the reason for my post was to remember what we are thankful for during this time of the year, and how to make the simple things special. I was inspired by the email blast I received from Paper Source with their super cute letterpressed "I am thankful for:" cards. I have purchased these for my family festivities, and I think it will be a huge hit. We usually eat around 3 or 4 in the afternoon, and when dessert is served, we always play games. We are Greek and Italian, so the competitive nature can be a bit much, so before the games this year, I want everyone to read their cards, and we can keep them in a scrapbook to look back on in years to come. Maybe it will keep everyone calm when Pictionary comes out!

The other thing I found that I cannot wait to put together are the Wheat Bundle Place Cards. Um, how cute are these?! I have picked up a bunch of goodies to make the table scape this year, and this will really add to the look of it. I love handmade, and I love it even more when it comes ready to be handmade!Wishing you all a lovely and joyous holiday with your loved ones!

Wednesday, November 18

Denise + Dean | Nicholson Ranch | Oct 9

I am so excited to share these pictures that the lovely Tara Arrowood took of my clients' Denise and Dean's wedding last month. They were on the fast planning trail, and put together a gorgeous and joyful wedding in less than four months! Great vendors, a lot of love and laughing made it come out as wonderful as it did. The best part was I got to coordinate a wedidng in my own little Greek Orthodox Church that I have gone to since I was 8.

The vendors that brought their best to this wedding were:

Reception: Nicholson Ranch, Sonoma
Photographer: Tara Arrowood
Lighting: Elle Music and Design
Cake: Laurie Lucov Wedding Cakes
Transportation: California Wine Tours

Happy Planning!