Fab Find! Essie’s Winter Nail Polish Collection

Winter is coming – and with it, a lavish lineup of the season’s nicest necessities in six smashing shades, from Essie’s fabulous collections of shades perfect for your winter wedding, engagement party, rehearsal dinner or any other special celebration that lets you style yourself in glam color.

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Fabulous Wedding Toasts! Who Can Make Them, and How to Make Them Unforgettable

What could be more wonderful than an amazing wedding toast? Lots of them! It’s those amazing words and wishes proposed to you that add so much heart to your wedding celebration, and there are so many opportunities all through your wedding season and wedding weekend for fabulous words to be spoken.

[My book Your Special Wedding Toasts is available now on Kindle, so get my tips, sample toasts, questionnaires to help you write your toast and other ideas now!]

Yes, it’s tradition that the Best Man makes the first toast at the reception, with the Maid of Honor speaking immediately after him, but great speeches may be added to many wonderfully worded moments that take place at all of your wedding-related celebrations.

Today’s brides and grooms are letting their best man and maid of honor know that they’d like them to speak at the reception, and they are also asking the parental hosts of the rehearsal dinner and even the morning-after breakfast if they’d like to make the ‘official toast’ of the event. When parents are hosting these important celebrations, it’s a big Don’t for anyone but them to give the first toast, so keep that in mind before you clink your fork against your glass to stand up and speak. Many couples have been stunned to find their parents fuming about their big moment being ruined.

Toasts are yours to make at events you’re hosting, such as a luncheon with your bridesmaids, and the wedding morning breakfast, and others in which you have the big spotlight.

So how many toasts are too many? Stick with one to two toasts per non-wedding event, two toasts at the rehearsal dinner (the first by the hosts, the second by you), and three or four toasts spread out over the course of the reception – the first being the best man’s and maid of honor’s, a later one made by or to the parents, and the last one made by the two of you as your celebration closes.

Here’s a list of the top events that invite special toasts made to the two of you – and perhaps also made by the two of you, as you thank your parents, bridal party, guests and perhaps even your kids:

–Your engagement party

–The first planned meeting between your parents

–A luncheon or get-together when you invite your friends to be your bridesmaids

–The luncheon that precedes your first gown-shopping expedition with your bridesmaids, maid of honor and the moms

–WEDDING showers

–Planning lunches or brunches with your bridal party members (thanking them again for doing such a great job for you!)

–Bachelor’s and bachelorette’s parties

–Any wedding weekend MEALS, such as brunches, barbecues or dinners at home

–The rehearsal dinner, again with the hosts speaking first, as a rule

–The after-party

–The morning-after breakfast, again with the hosts speaking first, and you then making the next toast

Don’t forget the hot new trend of the bride and groom taking the microphone right before they cut the cake, to thank everyone, from their parents to their guests, who came so far to share in their day, even to the staff of the reception hall and the wedding coordinator who’s right there taking care of everything.

And don’t forget the romance and sweetness of proposing a toast to your groom at any of these events. He may do the same for you.

Godiva Has the Perfect Engagement Party, Rehearsal Dinner or Shower Cake!

Photo courtesy of Godiva

We just polished off our first Godiva Chocolate Ganache Layer Cake, and we’re in chocolate heaven — as will your guests be when you serve this as the cake at your engagement party, rehearsal dinner or bridal shower cake. I’m thinking it would be the ideal groom’s cake, too, since so many of today’s grooms are requesting elegant, delectable chocolate cakes for their special dessert feature at the reception.

Godiva’s site says it serves 13, but it works beautifully for 16 or more. Ours arrived perfectly frozen, packaged in a secure box with a cardboard ring, and not a mark was on the smooth, chocolatey frosting when we unwrapped it. It was so gorgeous, we took pictures of it!

So if you’re looking for a rich alternative to the standard sheet cake, and want your guests to think you spend a fortune on an upscale cake (even though you didn’t,) this is the special wedding event cake for you.

Want to dress it up? Pipe on a starburst of fresh whipped cream and sprinkle with raspberries, then pipe a little swirl of raspberry sauce or chocolate sauce on each serving plate. Perfection.