Peru-tiful!

Back in February, I took a trip to Peru for two weeks with a friend to visit a couple of our besties that are currently living there. It was the first big trip I've taken and it was FUN. 

We hit up the cat park in Lima where there are, for real, cats everywhere. We spent some time at a beach town called Mejia. We bought big hats and went to the horse track. We wore ponchos and drank pisco on a rooftop.

We hiked down into Colca Canyon with a super cool guide to a little oasis of bungalows. We learned about native plants and creatures. We got up at 4:30am to hike out of the canyon (uff!).

We ate a ton of Peruvian food: new fruits, chocolate, potatoes! We thoroughly explored Arequipa.  We hugged a lot. We laughed. What a blast!

If you can make it happen, take a trip somewhere! Adventure is calling!

All photos below by the lovely Jenna Rae (except for the first one with the cats): 

Happy February! Let's get mushy.

I just noticed that one of my favorite adventures is back up on Groupon at a steal of a deal so I must share! 

Last winter, my sister and I took a trip up to Ely, MN to go dogsledding at  White Wilderness Sled Dog Adventures. It was AHHH-MAZING! Probably the coolest thing we've ever experienced. 

There are plenty of options for lodging in Ely. We stayed at the Grand Ely Lodge to take advantage of their sauna and swimming pool.

 Pro tips: 
-Unless you're certain that your winter gear is top notch, rent from White Wilderness. It's reasonably priced and it will keep you warm. 
-Bring extra socks with you on the sled trip. Wool or cashmere is nice!
-Hit the sauna when you get back if you stay at the lodge. It will warm you back up in no time!

What to expect: You'll arrive to the kennels in the morning, get suited up with winter gear and then head out to the kennels to get your dogs and hook them up to your sled. And when I say you, I really mean YOU. This is a hands-on day!

Once your dogs are hooked up, you can paper, rock, scissors with whoever you suckered into coming with you to see who gets to drive the sled first and who gets to ride. You'll trade off during your ride through the gorgeous trails of the Superior National Forest.

Midway through the day, you'll stop to warm up and have lunch. The guides will make a fire and get the food going for you. This is a good time to snuggle your dogs, grab some photos and maybe also change into fresh warm socks.

After lunch, you're back on the trails for the rest of the day. These photos really don't do the trip justice. It was legit, the coolest thing ever.

Goodnight, pups! Until next time!

Five Watt Coffee & Big Watt Cold Beverage Co. Holiday Jamboree - 12.11.15

I had the pleasure of helping out my friends at Five Watt Coffee and Big Watt Cold Beverage Co with their holiday party. They are up to big things and just happened to have an empty warehouse space for the holidays. We strung up so many twinkle lights, it was a teenage dream (and specifically, mine). We were just waiting for Freddie Prinze Jr. to show up and sweep us off our feet. 

I became friends with these guys via telling each other stupid jokes, so I couldn't help but make them some special mistletoe that fits their brand of humor -- see if you can spot it. Here are some detail shots from the night, before 350 people came and tore it up, literally and figuratively. We made cocktail tables and chandeliers out of their Big Watt kegs that they use for cold press coffee, sprinkled stocking stuffers of coffee beans and cold press cans all over the place and had a featured cocktail with their very own cold press coffee in it.

Keep an eye on these guys! Big things coming! 


The Fountain Room Wedding | Elle & Brett

The traditional wedding day selfie.

The traditional wedding day selfie.

It's fun to hear Elle & Brett tell their love story because it really sounds like they both knew upon their first encounter that they would be in each other's lives forever.

A couple of my favorite moments from their day -- During their ceremony, they took a shot of Southern Comfort together just like they had done on their first date. CUTE.  I loved that their guest book was a coffee table book with pictures of Minneapolis where friends could write about memories they had shared at the places pictured. And during the dance, Elle grabbed the mic and sang a sweet rendition of, "Can't Take My Eyes Off of You," to Brett. Cheers to a couple of musical lovebirds! Here are some photos of the day, taken by Jamie of Juxtaphotos.

Photographer: Juxtaphotos
Day-of Coordination: Bre 
Men's Attire: Atmosfere
Venue: The Fountain Room
Draping: Avant Decor
Band: The White Keys

Summer Tent Wedding | Maari & Chas

Wedding day selfie! This day was so fun!

Wedding day selfie! This day was so fun!

Maari & Chas are a couple that will do great things together. These two literally got engaged on top of a mountain and then decided to turn an empty park into a gorgeous wedding space to celebrate with 300 of their closest family and friends. 

I loved their unity ceremony where they poured soil from their childhood homes into a potted plant that they'll keep in their own home. And how about that dress?? 

Check out some of the photos below by Megan Norman

Photographer: Megan Norman
Day-of Coordination: Bre 
Venue: Manitou Island
Printed Collateral: Paper Rock Scissor
Makeup: Lacea Violet Artistry
Floral: Sadie's
Rentals: Apres // Rudy's Event Rentals
Transportation: Stillwater Trolley
Catering: Margaux's - White Bear Lake
Cake: Key's Cafe 
Band: Free & Easy

A pizza my heart

We've got a few great progressive food tours that happen annually in the Twin Cities like the TC Donut Crawl or Lake Street Taco Tour, but I have yet to see one for pizza (million dollar idea??). Taking this absence into our own hands, my buds and I thought, "Why not also dress as pizzas?" 

This goes into the record book as one of the best days ever. Cannibalism at its finest.

Stop 1: Pizza Luce Uptown - It took me the entire hour we spent here to stop laughing at how ridiculous this was. We don't have many good photos from this stop because we were too busy sending Snapchats and admiring ourselves. #narcissism

Stop 2: Pizza Nea - The pizza here was so good, and the staff was kind enough to put on our spare pizza costume and hang out with us. It was so cute to see the dudes in the group (everyone but me) blushing at the attention they were getting from passing ladies. I'm surprised they haven't started wearing their pizza outfits more often.

Stop 3: Psycho Suzis - Historically, I've known this place more for their giant tiki drinks than their pizza, but this day we had both. A lovely culinary combo.

Aaand after three stops, my untrained stomach was full. Biking home alone dressed as a pizza is the strangest feeling. To live to eat another day!

10 Reasons To Hire a Day-of Coordinator For Your Wedding

The need for a day-of wedding coordinator is often underestimated and overlooked. I think that's because it's not always clear what we actually do.

I've had enough couples say to me, "I don't know what we would have done without you," to know that you need me. So let's set the record straight:

HERE ARE 10 REASONS WHY YOU NEED A DAY-OF WEDDING COORDINATOR IN YOUR LIFE:

1.  I've been to a wedding or two... bazillion. I know how this thing works. I'll create your day-of timeline to ensure everything will flow smoothly so you and your guests can party on. 

2. How to hold the bouquets? How fast to walk? When to go? Where to stand? I'll run your rehearsal and make sure everyone in the ceremony is clear on how to not screw it up. 

3. While you're drinking mimosas and getting your hair done, I'll take care of setting up your DIY touches that you've spent hours on Pinterest figuring out how to make.

Found on: blog.theknot.com

Found on: blog.theknot.com

4. We have a great vendor community in the Twin Cities and beyond, but things don't always go as planned. If a vendor has an issue, I can step in as the on-site lead to help troubleshoot. 

5. The first look, ceremony, cocktail hour, grand entrance, reception, speeches, first dances, cake cutting and so much more! I'll ensure the day is moving on schedule so that you don't have to look at a clock once.

Found on: quotesgram.com

Found on: quotesgram.com

6. If you got a problem, yo, I'll solve it. I'm your behind-the-scenes problem-solver to fix any issues that come up so you don't even hear about them. 

7. "Go ask Bre." Is someone bugging you with logistical questions? All you have to do is point to me and say, "Go ask Bre." I'll handle it. 

Photo:  Leo Dj

Photo: Leo Dj

8. Your job is to look radiant and have the best day ever. I'll take care of reminding drunk Uncle Larry that you rented the deluxe porta-potty so that we wouldn't need to use the bushes.

Found on: 11points.com

Found on: 11points.com

9. Anything you need? I'm here to make your day amazing. Do you need me to wear glowstick mouse ears and toss party favors into your crowd? Cool.  

10. Be your own guest. You have spent so much time, effort and ca$h money on your wedding day. You should enjoy the day as the guests of honor and let me handle the details. I've got your back.

Photo:   Sarah Blesener

Fairhaven Farm Wedding | Shayla & Sean

Shayla and Sean's wedding was DIY perfection. Nearly all of the decor was self-made, from the hanging geo-lanterns to all of the tables. WHAT? This wonderfully creative couple used their skills to create several custom pieces with a very cohesive theme.

Another sweet touch-- instead of doing a receiving line, Sean & Shayla served bread baskets to every table as a symbol of gratitude. It was a heart-melting day with a lovely group of people.  

Check out some of the photos below from one of my faves, Sarah Blesener Photography.

Photographer: Sarah Blesener Photography
Day-of Coordination: Bre 
Venue: Fairhaven Farm
Catering: Barb Westman
Cake: The Copper Hen
DJ: Level 11 Events - Sarge
Dress: a & bé

Happy fall, y'all.

Today is the autumn equinox. As Minnesotans, this means that we need to prioritize spending time outside before it's too late. The season-that-shall-not-be-named is coming. Here are a few ideas for fun in the fall. 

1. Get yourself to the Tin Fish on Lake Calhoun immediately. You've only got weeks left to get a fish taco before they close up shop for the winter. 

coolhunting.com

coolhunting.com

2. Canoe the St. Croix River. This will be especially wonderful when the leaves change within the next few weeks. I've used Eric's Canoe Rental for canoe rental (duh). They offer a 10-mile or 30-mile trip.  

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3. If you can get out on a warm day, scoot over to The Wedge or The Wedge Table for a cone of their coconut soft serve. Walk around outside. Experience happiness. I swoon over the twist combo of both chocolate and vanilla.

4. Check out Franconia Sculpture Park, a big, outdoor park with an awesome variety of sculptures, sure to provide you with at least a couple of good instagram pics. If you pass through Lindstrom on your way to Franconia (via Hwy 8), stop at the Lindstrom Bakery for a doughnut. 

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5. Visit the Minnesota Harvest Apple Orchard for an apple wine tasting, sunflower maze, petting zoo and hayride. Then swing over to Minnesota's Largest Candy Store for any kind of candy you have ever wanted. 

6. Spend a night rooftop hopping in Uptown. Lynlake Brewery and Moto-i are my favorites, but to make a night of it, you could also check out LibertineUptown Tavern and Rooftop, Stella's Fish Cafe, Amore Victoria, and dare I say it, Cowboy Slims (when it re-opens). 

7. Go jump in the corn pit at Sever's Corn Maze. You will find kernels of corn around your home for days afterwards, but it's worth it. 

8. If you want to stay in the city but still get in the water, check in with the team at Above the Falls Sports for a guided kayaking tour. 

9. Take a bike ride to a few breweries. Sociable Cider Werks has an outdoor bocce ball court and Bauhaus Brew Labs has a killer patio with bags/cornhole. 

mspmag.com

mspmag.com

10. Have a little fire in your backyard and drink hot tea. Maybe listen to some Dashboard Confessional? It seems simple, but I can't get enough of it.

Let's take advantage of when it still feels good to be outside! Have fun!