Saturday, September 24, 2016

Wedding Gifts from the Groom's Parents

When a son is getting married, parents of the groom often want to get their child and his new wife a special gift. Although there are guidelines on what the parents of the groom are supposed to pay for during a wedding, there are no real rules of etiquette regarding gifts they should get the new couple. Most couples have a wedding registry filled with items they prefer as gifts, but most parents choose to get their child something more special. Whether the groom's parents have a small or large budget, there are several gift ideas parents of the groom can utilize when looking for the perfect wedding gift.

Wedding Gift Ideas

Parents of the groom who want to give a special wedding gift to their son and his bride should give the gift to the couple together either at the rehearsal dinner, the morning of the ceremony on in the few days leading up the ceremony.


Although money seems like an impersonal gift, it is an appropriate from the groom's parents, and one that can be very helpful for the new couple. Once the groom's parents have decided upon an amount they are comfortable with, the gift can be given just as money for the couple to use to get on their feet, or for a more specific purpose. For example, the parents may give money with the intention of the couple paying for the honeymoon, or using it as a down payment for a new home.


A family heirloom is another gift that is an appropriate way to celebrate the start of a new union. Items that have been passed down from generation to generation within the family can be given to the couple. An item, such as a piece of jewelry owned by someone in the groom's family can also be given to the bride to welcome her to her new family. New heirlooms can also be given for the couple to cherish such as a bottle of fine wine or liquor that comes with instructions to open on a specific anniversary down the road.


Paying for special accommodations for the bride and groom can be a special wedding present to make the bride and groom's special day even more memorable. Parents of the groom can arrange for special accommodations for the bride and groom to get ready on the day of the ceremony, or the day after the ceremony if the couple is not leaving for a honeymoon right away. Also, parents can get their son and his wife a special hotel room in which to spend their first night together as husband and wife. The accommodations given as a gift should be special and more than just a standard hotel room. If the couple already has accommodations, a gift of surprising them with an upgraded suite or room can be given as well.

Shower Gift Ideas

Wedding shower gifts are often given at the bridal shower, where the son is not in attendance. Even though the son may not be at the actual shower, the gift should still be for both the bride and the groom to enjoy together.

Gift Certificates

Gift certificates may not seem like personal wedding shower gifts, but giving gift certificates to help the couple pay for something in lieu of handing them cash is a more appropriate gesture for a shower. Certificates for the groom to get his hair cut and the bride to get her hair done on the morning of the wedding make thoughtful gestures and make for one less thing the new couple has to pay for themselves. Gift certificates for the couple use on the honeymoon are both thoughtful and useful. Many times, the bride and groom are responsible for paying for all of the meals and activities on their honeymoon, which can get costly. Items for area restaurants or spas that the couple can use together make great gifts.

Items for the Wedding

A wedding shower is a great time for parents of the groom to give the couple a special gift that can be used during their ceremony or reception and then kept as a keepsake. Prior to purchasing a gift, the groom's parents should check with the bride's parents to make sure they haven't already purchased the same gift for the couple. Most wedding keepsakes can be personalized with the bride and grooms name and the date of the wedding. Some wedding keepsake ideas are:
  • Guest books
  • Unity candles
  • Cake knife and server
  • Champagne flutes for toasting

Gift Giving Etiquette

Some parents choose to simply fulfill their traditional responsibilities for the wedding and forgo giving an additional gift. According to most rules of etiquette, the parents of the groom are responsible for paying for the rehearsal dinner and boutonnieres and corsages for immediate family members. The grooms parents may also pay for the honeymoon, the groom's cake and the alcohol at the reception. However, many parents of the groom also volunteer to help with other expenses as a gift.


Parents who volunteer to pay for all of these items may choose to be more budget-conscious about another gift, so it is acceptable to give the bride and groom a special letter and a small token of good luck on the day of the wedding. According to common rules of etiquette, it is a polite gesture to write a letter to the bride and to her parents on the day of the wedding. The letter should welcome the bride and her family to the groom's family.

The Perfect Wedding Gifts

No matter what type of gift parents of the groom decide to give their son and his new bride, gifts should always focus around the new couple and their love for one another. While choosing a gift keep the couple's personalities in mind to make sure their gift is truly a perfect sentiment for their special day.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Wedding Songs

25 Romantic Songs to Walk Down the Aisle To (That You Haven't Heard a Million Times)

Gone are the days of "Here Comes the Bride"—the processional is now one of the first opportunities you have to inject personality, meaning, and romance into your wedding ceremony. It's also the song that will literally bring you down the aisle to the love of your life so, naturally, there's some pressure to find the perfect tune to accompany that big moment. That's where we come in: 

You want to take this already dramatic moment and find music that complements and enhances it, without overpowering it.  Ideally, the goal is to try and accomplish all of this with music that holds a special place in your heart." Another tip to personalize your processional song is to pair the song with the venue surroundings—like Bob Marley for a beach wedding, Etta James for a classic ballroom setting, or Arcade Fire for a modern space. That said, "you don't want anything too dancey and avoid things like distracting lyrics. Keep it simple and beautiful. With those tips in mind, here are 25 of the best songs to walk down to the aisle to that you haven't heard a million times before.

  1. "Something" The Beatles
  2. "Stay" Rhianna
  3. "Make You Feel My Love" Adele
  4. "Wild Horses" Rolling Stones
  5. "Hallelujah" Jeff Buckley
  6. "In My Life" The Beatles
  7. "Higher Love"- James Vincent Mcmorrow
  8. "Halo" Beyonce
  9. "Crazy Love" Van Morrison
  10. "Pink Moon" Nick Drake
  11. "Your Hand In Mine" Explosions in the Sky
  12. "Future Days" Pearl Jam
  13. "Thank You" Led Zeppelin
  14. "What A Wonderful World" Louie Armstrong
  15. "I Will Follow You Into The Dark" Death Cab for Cutie
  16. "God Only Knows" The Beach Boys
  17. "Fade Into You" Mazzy Star
  18. "I'll Be There" Mariah Carey/Jackson 5
  19. "Blackbird" The Beatles
  20. "First Day Of My Life" Bright Eyes
  21. "Sea of Love" Cat Power
  22. "Falling In Love At A Coffee Shop" Landon Pig
  23. "Can't Help Falling in Love" Haley Reinhart
  24. "At Last" Etta James
  25. "Heartbeats" Jose Gonzalez

Thursday, September 15, 2016

7 Ways to Surprise your Groom at the Wedding

1. Make a "love notes" journal. The Mr. is a published author and while I couldn’t be prouder, he isn’t exactly the king of public speaking or even conversing in a private setting. However, he knows just how to melt my heart by scattering love notes around the house. I will publish each one in a leather-bound journal, along with new letters written by me, and give it to him on the morning of our wedding day. It doesn't cost a lot, but the sentiment is priceless.

Photo Credit: Wildflower Weddings
2. Get your bridal party in on the fun. Although I adore all things mush, we all know I can’t deny my inner sass, which is why I just may have my girls flash my groom a message right before I walk down the aisle. Not only is it adorable, but he’ll never expect it...

Photo Credit: Wedding Day Dreams

Photo Credit: The Lovely Find
…or have your girls text him the message instead. Either way, he’ll be counting the seconds till you walk down the aisle! 
3. Engrave his wedding band with a meaningful message. It can be a verse, your wedding dates or something that is sure to make him laugh. (While he knows about this idea, the Mr. will not know what I choose to engrave—he will surprise me with my own engraved ring on the wedding day as well).
Photo Credit: Susan Stripling
4. Plan a private moment after the vows. We’re marrying in Italy near a lake, so after the vows, I plan on surprising Edwin with a magical boat ride for two. The guests will be mingling during the cocktail hour, so it’s the perfect time to sneak in some alone time. If you're having a fall-themed wedding, consider having a hayride, instead.

Photo Credit: Green Wedding Shoes
5. Include his favorite foods. It’s 12 a.m.—do you know where your man is? Mine is snacking away, and since food is the way to a man's heart, why not include some of his favorite munchies at the wedding? Add them in for cocktail hour if he's a hamburgers-and-hotdogs kind of guy, and you want your reception menu to be a bit more upscale. Or have a midnight lounge where you serve breakfast items like mini pancakes, quiche and donuts, to celebrate his favorite meal of the day.

Photo Credit: Family Bites
6. Have breakfast in bed the day after the wedding. Nothing is more romantic than waking up to your guy as his wife for the very first time. But with crazy events and the never-ending hosting that comes along with throwing a wedding, you may be too busy to enjoy lounging the day after. Ask your Maid of Honor or planner to send over breakfast in bed, which could be just the cure. 

Photo Credit: Zsa Zsa Bellagio
7. Take some boudoir photos for him. It’s a trend that I L-O-V-E and couldn’t be more of a fabulous gift. You don’t have to channel the vibes of Playboy, but you can make it sensual by wearing his favorite sports jersey or his 9-to-5 business shirt (and nothing else). Although most brides surprise their groom with boudoir photos on the wedding day, I plan on giving him mine either on our honeymoon or one-month anniversary so that he won't see it coming.

Photo Credit: Charlotte Boudoir