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Old 03-28-2013, 04:03 PM   #31
mariapicardikenyon
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Just joining in! You have such a beautiful story! I love it! Can't wait to hear more and good luck in your dress shopping!
Love your photo!
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:50 AM   #32
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Thanks for the support ladies!!!

Dress shopping was...interesting. I've at least narrowed down the types of dresses I won't wear so I guess that's good. I'll write up a whole thingy on it after Monday. We're going to Alfred Angelo on that day so I'll have more to say.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!!!

~Cristina
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:59 AM   #33
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Narrowing it down helps big time! I had an awesome consultant that asked what I didn't like about each dress. I would tell her and then she wouldn't bring me any more with that aspect. It was super helpful. Good luck! I know I found it slightly stressful to dress shop, which I know seems odd. I felt like there was so much pressure on finding this one dress! Good luck!!
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Old 03-30-2013, 02:31 PM   #34
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Thanks for the support ladies!!!

Dress shopping was...interesting. I've at least narrowed down the types of dresses I won't wear so I guess that's good. I'll write up a whole thingy on it after Monday. We're going to Alfred Angelo on that day so I'll have more to say.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!!!

~Cristina
Hi just joining in ! I am interested to see how your experience was with Alfred Angelo! I was getting very frustrated dress shopping. I don't have an family or really close friends near me so I brought my closest friend that is my coworker. Didn't go very well. I went to David's Bridal twice and Alfred Angelo twice. Finally I went to a small local bridal boutique an hour south of me and I'm so happy I went. The owner was helping and she was wonderful. I found my dress that day!! Good luck

Jodi
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Old 03-30-2013, 04:42 PM   #35
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Thanks Summer! I can definitely relate to the stress.

Jodi, I actually haven't gone to Alfred yet... we're going Monday at 12. I'll definitely let you know how it goes. I have some high hopes because I like a lot of their designs. We shall see!
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Old 03-31-2013, 01:02 PM   #36
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Twas The Nightmare Called "Room Block"

First and foremost, a very Happy Easter for those of you who celebrate it. Today Mom, Andy & I will be driving to my brothers home for dinner and I'm happy to say that the only thing I've had to cook was stuffed mushrooms (yum!).

After the big decision, I immediately became a research machine. The first thing I came across were these boards and they've been SO helpful! This was where I learned about Carrie's book "Passporter's Disney Weddings & Honeymoons". She's an invaluable source of information and if you don't have the book yet definitely buy it!

We decided to have a Wishes wedding (there was no way I could narrow my guest list down to 20).

Details:

Jan. 5th, 2014
2:30 Ceremony at the Wedding Pavilion
3:30 Cocktail hour at the Grand Floridian
4:30 Reception at the Grand Floridian

Total number of Guests Invited: 59 adults (not including plus ones), 4 kids (under the age of 8)

We've also recently decided to have a Dessert Party the night before as a welcome event for our guests. We booked Lochside at Epcot and I have to say, I think I'm more excited about this than the actual wedding!

The most stressful aspect of the beginning stages of a DFTW is the infamous room block. Seriously, this bad boy stressed me out! I had no clue about the amount of people who would show up let alone how many would stay at a resort.

The hotel choices were easy. Each time Mom and I go to Disney we wind up staying at Riverside... we've stayed in other resorts but this one has been our favorite so far. SO we went with Riverside, Pop Century & The Floridian given that we want to stay there the night of the wedding.

I decided on Pop Century because I researched bus reviews for the value resorts and Pop Century had the best ones. I read that sometimes the buses for the other resorts (music, sports, movies) are shared and pop century always has its own bus.

When I tackled the room block the only people I had in consideration were my friends who I knew without a doubt would be there and my immediate family members. SO initially I blocked out 25 room nights only. We wanted to reach the minimum so we could qualify for a free room night for ourselves the night of the wedding.

I sent this to Disney and their response was that I should up it to 62 simply because of the time of year we're getting married and the fact that at the end of the day, we can bring it back down to 25 nights. SO... that's what we did.

Below is our actual room night block so you can see how we put it together. OH... and we're going to upgrade to a suite in the Floridian for our free night and just pay the difference.

This really was a daunting process. I was most worried about having to pay for the rooms that were not taken BUT DF has reassured me (multiple times) that given the amount of guests we think we're going to have making 25 nights shouldn't be an issue.

Having said that, I'm not a magician, I don't have a crystal ball and there was no way to predict who would stay where (if they'd stay on the grounds at all). The way I rationed it was that the majority of the guests would probably want to stay at the same hotel as us. For that reason alone, I placed most of our room nights in our hotel. The other thing to consider is that you guests don't have to stay in the hotels you've chosen, if for some reason you go over your room night allowance that's okay... they can still book if there are rooms available in other hotels AND get the discount. Also, you can always lower the amount of rooms blocked so you can reach your overall minimum. Wrap your head around all of those factors and you won't freak out as much. Once you accept this, the process seems a bit less crazy.

Our wedding is on a Sunday so I have rooms from Wednesday through Sunday night. I'm almost positive no one will stay past Sunday night.

Wednesday: (5 total nights)

3-Riverside
2- Pop Century

Thursday: (8 total nights)

5- Riverside
3- Pop Century

Friday: (11 total nights)

6- Riverside
5- Pop Century

Saturday: (18 total nights)

3- Grand Floridian
10- Riverside
5- Pop Century

Sunday: (20 total nights)

3- Grand Floridian
11- Riverside
6- Pop Century

TOTAL Nights: 62

I hope this has helped you a bit!
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Old 03-31-2013, 01:22 PM   #37
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I TOTALLY hear you about the room block! I felt like if I could tackle this bad boy, the rest would fall into place eventually.

The other point that gave me less anxiety about the whole thing was being able to release any rooms I didn't feel we would use 60 days prior to the wedding in writing. That at least felt like a kind of 'eraser'! I'm sure they have to know that we can't anticipate EVERYONE that will show up! 80% of the rooms booked we have to fill... and with your guest count, I agree with the DF! I definitely think you can do it

Hope the mushrooms are delish and you enjoy your Easter!
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:36 AM   #38
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Love your story!! I also love that one of the reasons you couldn't move back home was because of the pizza lol. I'm from Jersey and there really is something about Jersey/NYC pizza & bagels they just can be beat!
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:36 AM   #39
mariapicardikenyon
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Love your story!! I also love that one of the reasons you couldn't move back home was because of the pizza lol. I'm from Jersey and there really is something about Jersey/NYC pizza & bagels they just can be beat!
I'm with you ladies. From NJ and can't imagine leaving. Love NYC and so convenient. The bread is amazing!
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Old 04-01-2013, 04:49 PM   #40
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Nicole... yes... the eraser aspect was defintely helpful! (Mushrooms came out great btw)

LeeLee and Maria... I'm telling you... I have NO idea what I'm going to do about pizza and bagels when we move out of NYC! We'll most likely come back to Florida with in the next year and a half and I just don't know how I'll handle it. We've been in S. Florida all week and I badly miss my favorite hole in the wall Italian place in Queens. Eeek!
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:25 PM   #41
leelee9878
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You'll have to visit via Napoli a lot, I feel like that's the only "real" pizza in Florida! I lived in Orlando for a bit and couldn't find any good places. As for bagels I can mail you some haha
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October 2008- Trip w/Josh (bought DVC!) CBR
December 2008- Disney Wonder, 3 Night Bahamas Cruise
January 2009- 1st DVC Stay - SSR
March 2009- Suprise Parents at Disney - SSR
December 2009- Crazy Family Trip #1 AKV Kidani
May 2010- Disney Magic, 11 Night Med Cruise
September 2010- Last Minute Birthday Surprise BWV & BLT
November 2010- Disney Wonder, 3 Night Bahamas Cruise
December 2010- Crazy Family Trip#2 BCV
November 2011- Disney Dream, 4 Night Bahamas Cruise & SSR
December 2011 - Last Min Trip - OKW
January 2012 - Hawaii - Aulani!!!
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Old 04-01-2013, 06:40 PM   #42
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Nicole... yes... the eraser aspect was defintely helpful! (Mushrooms came out great btw)

LeeLee and Maria... I'm telling you... I have NO idea what I'm going to do about pizza and bagels when we move out of NYC! We'll most likely come back to Florida with in the next year and a half and I just don't know how I'll handle it. We've been in S. Florida all week and I badly miss my favorite hole in the wall Italian place in Queens. Eeek!
LOL! I totally agree with you guys. I was born and raised on Long Island and have lived in 3 other states! Where in S. Florida are you? I lived in Ft Myers for almost 6 years and found a REALLY Good pizza joint! My mom still lives there so it's a spot we always go back to. The pizza is definitely up there with NY

Jodi
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Old 04-01-2013, 07:35 PM   #43
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LeeLee... our hole in teh wall is actually called Napoli!

Jodi my mom is in Miami and we've yet to find a good enough pizza place. Luckily Andy & I are heading back to NYC tomorrow. :-D
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:26 PM   #44
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A Preacher Man

Like I said, I became a research machine. We'd conquered the Battle of Blocking Rooms... sounds like a movie title...

<insert deep movie preview voice here> ... in a world of darkness and unpredictability... it is one woman's quest to block the perfect number of rooms for an unknown number of people in a time period 8 months from today. Will she succeed?...

My top 4 things to accomplish:

Officiant
Photography
Hair/Make up
Save the Dates (affectionally known as STD's--hehe)

Disney has a list of preferred "vendors" for officiants. I looked at that list, researched the boards and narrowed my choices down by googling and checking out the websites for the officiants we thought we would mesh with us the best. I narrowed the list down to 3:

Tim Herring
Jack Day
Kevin Knox

After researching a bit more, I learned that SOME brides (certainly not all) had an issue with Rev. Herring. Their complaint was that he wasn't as flexible as he claimed to be with his ceremonies and though they made the changes they wanted incorporated, he didn't implement them. This worried me because in no way will we have a set ceremony. We want it to represent our personalities and relationship. A cookie cutter ceremony just isn't going to cut it.

He was nixed.

Rev. Jack Day came recomended to me by a family friend. He had performed both of her sons Disney weddings. This gave me a good source of comfort so I decided to contact him. Along with that, he has pretty good reviews on the disboards along with other wedding websites.

He received an email.

Rev. Kevin Knox has fantastic reviews on all the wedding websites. I think the only complaint I saw was based off of one brides experience as far as payment goes. She said he demanded payment on the day of the wedding. Obviously, this is a turn off but it was just this one girls experience and I knew that I'd be very specific about payments up front.

He received an email.

I got immediate responses from both Rev's. but they were those generic "hey thanks for contacting us we'd love to perform your wedding" yada yada yada...

Rev. Jack's email said he'd send us a "jack pack" via snail mail and we could go from there. I liked that and sent a quick thank you in response.

However, shortly after Rev. Kev's initial automatic response email, we received an actual message from him. This impressed me and we started communicating back and forth with questions about pricing, ceremonies and protocol. He sent us a pdf of all the ceremonies he offers along with extras that we can add on along with ensuring us that we can change whatever we'd like. Within this pdf were little video snippets of him performing ceremonies. This was important to me. You can only get so much from an email.

A few days later and I still hadn't heard anything from Rev. Jack and Rev. Kev (and his wife Teresa) were very quick with responding. Communication is key and we were at that point leaning very heavily towards using his services.

The following week Andy & I planned a phone date with Rev. Kev so we could get his vibe and possibly make our final decision. He was very sweet on the phone and we liked him from the get go. What really sold me though? We learned that Rev. Kev not only lived in my hometown but he's related to my moms neighbors and he actually knows our house! Hellooo small world! I was hooked and we sent him a deposit that night.

I think it's important to say that this is a very personal choice and I definitely don't want my opinion to dictate what you decide (if you're still trying to figure this part of your ceremony out). Surely, all of these men are good people and even if I didn't feel comfortable going with them personally, it doesn't mean they may not be right for you. Do the research and come up with your own conclusions. I know you'll make the right choice!
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:30 PM   #45
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We chose Rev. Kevin Knox as well! DF watched the videos and I really liked the flexibility of, essentially, creating our own ceremony. There is so much information, but I was able to cut/paste together a ceremony that fits us.

DF spoke to him on the phone and we're meeting him after our planning session. I think we're both excited about that.
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