Tuesday, September 2, 2014

A Getaway From the Everyday - Fairmont Le Chateau Montebello

I wanted a relaxing little getaway before the summer months drifted away. Not wanting to travel far, but wanting to stay somewhere luxurious and with lots to do, I immediately thought of the Fairmont Le Chateau Montebello located in the little Quebec town of Montebello.


Only a one hour drive from Ottawa, it was the perfect little slice of paradise to escape the city, a busy job and my typical day to day life.  Just driving up to the front of the hotel is breathtaking. The cedar lodge is beautifully constructed and steeped in history.

Fairmont Montebello

The entire hotel is beautifully constructed. The main lobby boasts a floor to ceiling stone fireplace. It is the perfect spot to enjoy a cocktail, or play one of the many boardgames the hotel has on hand for guests.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Wedding Week: Things I Wish I Knew Before I Said "I Do"

Bridal Advice

There is no shortage of wedding advice out there. From bridal magazines, to blogs, to message boards. Getting engaged makes you feel like you are part of some exclusive club that talks about things you never even batted an eyelash at before. Etiquette, colour swatches, floral arrangements, varying shades of white, and the list goes on. It's really enough to make you want to call off the entire thing before you've even started.

But slowly you sift through the information. You realize a lot of it is outdated and steeped in tradition. You grow a backbone and learn to stand up for yourself and what you want your wedding day to be.

If you're like me you talk to other brides and get their advice. But even with all this advice, all the reading you do, there will still be some things you can only learn through experience. This is why, on the last day of Wedding Week, I am sharing the things I wish someone had told me before my wedding day:

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Wedding Week: Wedding Paper Goods & Minted Giveaway

Paper goods are a huge part of a wedding, but they can sometimes be a detail that can get overlooked. Until I started planning my wedding, I didn't realize how many choices and styles of paper goods were out there and how many different ways you can create things like invitations, place cards, programs and thank you cards. Even then, paper goods do not stop here. There are many other ways you can incorporate paper into your weddings like save the dates, menu cards, bridal shower invitations and games and seating charts.

I personally didn't use save the date cards so the first glimpse guests got of my wedding was the invitations they received in the mail. Invitations are a great way to give guests a sneak peek into your theme. We chose vintage and rustic inspired invitations which incorporated our colour scheme – mint and peach. We kept it light and fun, which was the vibe we were aiming for with our entire wedding. We decided to order our invitations as a digital PDF from Etsy and then print them ourselves.  I purchased our invitations from the shop Jade & Eve. Lacie, the shop owner was so easy to work with and customized the invitations until I felt they looked just right and the turnaround time was very fast.

A tip for anyone printing their own invitations: Wait for Michael’s weekly 40% off coupon and purchase your card stock there once every week. We did this and were able to cut the cost quite a bit. We also ordered mint coloured envelopes from a cheap paper stock website online.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Wedding Week: From Head to Toe, My Wedding Day Look


They say it takes a village to raise a child. In the same sense, it takes a village to prepare a bride for her big day....and by village, I mean a village full of really skilled professionals. I have to say that one of my favourite memories of my whole wedding was getting ready with my bridesmaids and mom. We had the 90s jams going, mimosas flowing and a talented team of hair and makeup angels to make us look beautiful.

Not to mention the fact that my maid of honour brought us all Starbucks. Hence why she was the maid of honour. She knew just what I need to get through a long and nerve-wracking day without me even asking. Huge shout out to the staff at Starbucks for writing out everyone's title on their drinks.

wedding day starbucks

The process of getting ready actually was really calming for me. It helped me not think about my nerves because I was having such a good time with my bridesmaids. It was fun to be able to get dolled up at my parents house, rather than a salon. I think it took a lot of the stress out of the day.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Wedding Week: My Wedding Day {May 24, 2014}

The night before my wedding I slept like a baby. I came home from my rehearsal dinner back to my parents house with my bridesmaids Catherine and Gillian. I said goodbye to Mark as he spent his last night as a single man in a hotel near our wedding venue. 

personalized bride wedding dress hanger


I crawled into bed around 10:00 pm, with my wedding dress hanging directly across from me on my closet door.  I had been reading some trashy novel that week and decided to finish the few remaining chapters before I went bed, assuming I wouldn't sleep anyway.  After I turned off the lights, crawled under the blankets, said a little prayer and closed my eyes I was fast sleep and didn't wake up until 6:00 am the next morning.

I could have slept in until 8:30 am but I had some nervous excitement already brewing. After checking the weather and seeing I would be blessed with a sunny day, I hoped out of bed to find my mom already awake and in the kitchen.

Slowly the rest of the house woke up. My brother left to meet Mark at the hotel. The makeup and hair team arrived and set up in my parents' living and dining rooms. My maid of honour Tanya arrived with Starbucks for everyone and my final bridesmaid Erin arrived.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Welcome to Wedding Week!

It has been three months since my wedding on May 24, 2014. I purposely waited before sharing all the details of my wedding on the blog because I wanted some time for the entire day to sink in. Before the wedding I had a lot of advice from brides, but nothing truly prepares you for the moment you walk down the aisle towards your husband and your future.


All week long I will be sharing details from my wedding. I'll be sharing my head to toe wedding day look, what I learned as a bride,  some of my favourite vendors and Etsy shops and sharing with you my wedding day - the laughs, the tears, the nerves and the fun.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Trace's Adventures in Dating: My Last First Date

On Adventures in Dating, we've been lucky enough to have a few readers share their last first date. You know, their first dates with their person that they would end up marrying. We had Christa share her story, as well as her husband Brad, who wrote his own account of the very same date. Adventures in Dating has also had Emma write about her first date with her husband. I love reading these posts because they let us in to the start of what would become beautiful marriages. So that is why today I am sharing my first date with my husband Mark and Mark is doing the same.  You will get both perspectives of the same date, in one post.