Archive - Entertainment RSS Feed

Band, DJ, or iPod? How To Choose

Last week, regular reader and all around awesome bride to be srah asked for advice on deciding whether a DJ or an iTunes set up will be better for her wedding. I’m going to freely admit that I have little personal experience with using an iPod or similar sound system for a wedding and my experience with DJs has been less regular than that of most regular wedding attendees. After all, I married a musician. I move in musically artistic circles. Most of the weddings I’ve been to either have had live music or were held well before iTunes had been invented.

Nevertheless, I’ve done a bit of research this week looking for ways to break this down for you, srah, and anyone else facing a similar decision. And since I am a little bit prejudiced in favor of live music whenever possible, well, I opened up the question just in case someone else is thinking along those lines and wondering what to do about it.
(more…)

Kid Week: Keeping Small Guests Happy

Welcome to day four of Kid Week at Manolo for the Brides! Enjoy your stay.


(Illustration via Yuba City Wedding Photography)

There’s an art to keeping wedding guests happy, but it’s really not that difficult once you know the trick: think like a guest. Think about what has made you feel welcomed and happy, and then do those sorts of things. Think about what made you feel bored, confused, or unwelcome and avoid those things. It isn’t 100% foolproof, of course, since where one person finds something charming and inviting… another finds it hokey or off-putting. Still, thinking of the comfort of other people puts you well ahead of the game. A much higher percentage of people will come away having enjoyed themselves if you’ve made their happiness a priority.

The thing is, that goes double with children.

They’re smaller, so their physical needs may be more demanding. They have less patience and stamina, so one needs to consider pacing and opportunities for rest. They’re less experienced, so their concerns about things that are too unfamiliar need to be addressed.

But don’t panic. A few simple choices can help you make sure even your youngest guests feel welcome and special.
(more…)

It’s All Happening At the Zoo


When it comes time to pick your wedding/reception venue, we all know the choices, right? Church, hotel, charming country inn, someone’s backyard, the beach at Aruba, the local VFW hall… yeah, same old, same old. But have you ever considered your local zoo?

On a recent episode of Four Brides, one of the couples in the competition held their wedding and reception at the zoo. I was struck immediately by how charming a spot it was for celebrating. When guests arrived, they got to play at the zoo for a while before heading to the ceremony location. Once the couple had been pronounced legally spliced, the guests took a scenic tram ride to the reception area, where a giraffe peered over the wall into the festivities as if to request its own slice of wedding cake. All in all, it looked like a fun time. In fact, that’s the couple that won the honeymoon prize. I feel sure it was in significant part because of their fabulous location.
(more…)

A Different Reason to Trash the Dress


Kevin Cotter is trashing the dress… his ex-wife’s wedding dress, that is. Over and over and over again.

You see, Cotter and his wife got divorced last year and she left her wedding dress behind. She apparently didn’t feel the need to get it back and Cotter was at a loss at first what to do with it. According to the interview he did last month with The Man Registry, he brought the question up at a family dinner and asked for suggestions.

Luckily, he rejected the first entirely crass suggestion from his brother… but he did get inspired to play with the idea of all the ways he could use the dress in non-traditional ways. Thus the blog My Ex-Wife’s Wedding Dress was born.

So far the uses have included things like: place mat (hmmm… looks more like a tablecloth), draft stopper, kite, Darth Vader scarecrow, and my personal favorite, Christmas tree skirt. Cotter even wore it as his Halloween costume last year. That’s the picture at the top, incidentally.

What do I think of all this? Well, it would seem Mr. Cotter has found a creative way of exorcising his personal demons. It’s juvenile and a bit ridiculous, but sometimes that’s what it takes to get over a sad end to a hopeful beginning. I think if his ex-wife had wanted to keep the dress safe, she would have done well to take it with her when she left. I think some people are getting a cheap thrill out of the fact that someone else is doing something they wish they could do or had done.

And I think if Mr. Cotter ever remarries, his new lady ought to think carefully before leaving a wedding gown to his tender mercies if things don’t work out.

Oh, and I’m thankful that Mr. Twistie and I remain ridiculously contented with one another.

Good and Bad Ideas Plus a Caution from Four Weddings

If there’s one wedding reality show I find myself really enjoying of late, it’s Four Weddings on TLC. For those unfamiliar, four brides getting married in the same area around the same time attend one anothers’ weddings and score them on the gown, the venue, the food, and the overall experience. The bride whose wedding gets the highest aggregate score wins a fabulous honeymoon to a surprise location, and the other three, well, they get to be on TV and attend three weddings without having to come up with a gift and being utterly free to snark or gush about whatever they please for the nation at large.

The two episodes I watched last night were particularly interesting to me, in that they included some really brilliant and some really, really questionable ideas. Take a look after the cut to see what I’m talking about.
(more…)

Always a Bridesmaid’s Dress

“You can totally wear it again!”

How many times have bridesmaids been told precisely that as they cringe internally? I was told it about a dusty rose acetate taffeta (with matching polyester lace, no less!) high-necked, long-sleeved, full-skirted, tea length number once.

At least it was cheap. It never saw the light of day again. Then again, nothing in dusty rose ever would from my closet. It’s one of the few colors in the world that I detest and I look as though I’m in the final stages of terminal jaundice in it. I did, however, have better luck with the next two bridesmaids dresses I wore.

This week on Project Runway, Season 8, a group of women who were all told The Lie showed up to have their unfortunate polyester and acetate monstrosities turned into clothes they actually would want to wear again (but wouldn’t be able to after the runway show, because all designs on the show become the property of the show and are auctioned off at the end of the season).
(more…)

Do You Want to Invite Kids?

This is one of the most contentious questions in wedding planning, for some reason. I’m really not quite sure why it makes so many otherwise perfectly reasonable people froth at the mouth and arm themselves with the verbal equivalent of thermonuclear devices. It’s just a question and there honestly is no universally right or wrong answer to it. Even Miss Manners et al agree that it is perfectly proper to make either decision.

And yet one side claims that allowing children in the door is tantamount to turning your wedding into Romper Room, leading to social disgrace and a miserable married life while the other side claims that anyone who wants a kid-free celebration hates all children and therefore has no business getting married.

Both sides have blown the thing entirely out of proportion. That’s right, I said it and I stand by it. I’ve been to a metric buttload of weddings in my day, and you know what didn’t determine whether or not it was a nice wedding? Whether or not children were invited. On this question, I am Switzerland… and a Switzerland that feels way too many other countries are being entirely too overwrought to make much sense.

The fact is, there are plenty of reasons to make either choice that do not include failing to take your wedding seriously or hating children. Even if you do have a preference for the less adult things in life or really do think children should be put into stasis from birth to age 21, it’s really your decision. You get to make it, and it’s okay.

But what if you’re not sure which way to go on this one? How do you decide? Take a look after the cut and see.
(more…)

Page 1 of 3123»