Friday, October 31, 2014

A Bride's Vows To Herself - Sage advice from

Sunset Beach Weddings ran across this interesting article earlier this month from website.  It was a guestpost by MONICAWESOME on Nov 9th.  As wedding planners, we have seen the phenomenon of brides putting so much pressure on themselves to have the perfect event.  Right down to the color of the ribbon on the bubbles.  Maybe MONICAWESOME is on to something here! 

This is not the most important day of my life: an Offbeat Bride's vows to herself

Guestpost by MONICAWESOME on NOV. 9TH

I wrote this as a little something to remind myself what it's REALLY about… and make me laugh at myself when I get too stressed.

  • This is not the most important day of my life. The day my partner and I realized we wanted to spend our lives together was much more significant than the day we will make it legal. I have had more important days than this, and I will continue to have more important days.
  • I refuse to pretend to be someone I'm not in order to please other people. I will not fool myself into thinking my family and friends have to drop their lives to help me with my wedding.

  • I will not put on airs. I will not kid myself or pretend to be something, or someone, that I am not. I am not wealthy, I am not a princess, I am not super-formal or cookie-cutter. I do not fit in with the crowd. I am a beautiful, elegant, unique person, and I will let my real self shine on this day.
  • I will let my worries about what other people think GO, and not be swayed so easily by what other people think (but isn't neccessarily right or the best thing). I MUST remember this, no matter how much I love them.
  • I will try to not be stressed. I will try to not be too sensitive, as I usually am.
  • I will not lose it if the flowers aren't everything I hoped for or the cake isn't the color I wanted.
  • I will not care if I cry too much and the pictures show it.
  • I will be flexible. I will not cry if the song order is wrong, or I trip on my way out of the carriage.
  • I will relax. I will take time to just enjoy all our favorite people.
  • I will take in the all the love instead of worrying about when to cut the cake.
  • I will kiss my groom whenever possible.
  • I will kiss my mother whenever possible.
  • I will think about the words during the ceremony, and feel them, and squeeze my husband's hand.
  • I will LAUGH, and HUG EVERYONE, and DANCE!
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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Are you Ready to get Married?

Here's an article we read recently from and, written by Kimberly Dawn Neumann, that outlines the 10 questions that prove you're ready for marriage.  For a quick fun read, the article does have some interesting points about your marriage and your wedding.  

If you decide you are ready to get married, a Destin Beach Wedding is a great way to do it!

10 questions that prove you're ready for marriage

By Kimberly Dawn Neumann  10 questions that prove you're ready for marriage

(photo from the original article)
Many people get engaged because they're overcome with emotion in the heat of the moment — and without really thinking through all the implications of making such a serious, committed decision. So what can you do to ensure that you're ready for marriage with your current partner and not just giving in to pressure from others? "It's important to feel that you are really certain about this. Before you find yourself shopping for flowers, photographers, DJs and a venue, it's critical that you know you are seeking marriage for all the right reasons," says Dr. Karin Anderson, author of It Just Hasn't Happened Yet..., who called off her own wedding just two months before the day the ceremony was scheduled to happen. "Take it from someone who has experienced this firsthand — it's better to think through your decision carefully before it's too late to get your deposits back."

With that in mind, we've created a list of questions you should think about before you find yourself on either end of a marriage proposal. After all, a little thought and preparation may result in your own "happily ever after" — or save you from getting divorced! 

1. Is the timing right? You've heard it before: Timing is everything, and the strongest marriages are often a result of optimal timing for both parties. According to Anderson, however, external sources (like your parents or friends) often dictate the pace of your relationship's progress, resulting in a premature proposal. "Be honest with yourself — it's better to tell your parents to back off than to marry the wrong man or woman," says Anderson. And if your biological clock is ticking? "Better to marry the right man and adopt a child later in life than to lock in a father and end up divorced and raising your child alone," Anderson advises. Have you been able to observe each other's behavior in a variety of different circumstances? If not, what's the hurry? People are walking down the aisle later than ever these days (which is a good thing, since the divorce rate plummets if the husband and wife are both at least 28 when they marry). 

2. Why this person? "Nine times out of ten, marriages fall apart because people either pick the wrong person or marry for the wrong reasons," says Dan Neuharth, Ph.D., a licensed marriage and family therapist in San Francisco and author of Secrets You Keep From Yourself. "Marrying someone primarily because other potential partners seem few and far between or because you feel you need to be married to feel OK about yourself is what keeps divorce lawyers busy." If considering marriage comes from a place of stress or fear rather than joy, then you should run — not walk — in the other direction. You're not ready to be married yet, and this isn't the right person for you. 

3. Are you focused more on marrying this person... or throwing your dream wedding?"Make sure you're in love with your partner, not just in love with the idea of being in love," says Dr. Neuharth. "You are marrying a person, not a romantic movie, and people don't follow Hollywood scripts." Really think about whether you're idealizing marriage or just the wedding. Try to have realistic expectations, because once all the fun and parties end, you have real life to contend with — and it's not always sunshine and roses. 

4. Is my potential spouse emotionally healthy and ready for marriage? It's fun to get to know people with a range of different backgrounds — maybe even date someone who you know isn't right for you. But marriage is serious; when you're choosing a lifelong partner, you need to be sure that both of you are emotionally healthy — or in the process of getting that way, at least. "Admitting your partner is a 'fixer-upper' and hoping your marriage will serve as that person's support system is a recipe for disaster," says Anderson. "Typically, once the partner gets 'fixed' he or she will move on to someone else, because the glue that held you together was the common goal of healing, which has since been accomplished." Anderson also warns that if your current relationship includes any of the three "As" — abuseanger, or addiction — you shouldn't get married. 

5. Do you appreciate all of your partner's aspects equally, and without expecting this person to change after you're married? If you think a wedding will magically transform someone into the ideal husband or wife, think again. No one's perfect, and it's vital that you walk down the aisle without expectations that you or your partner must change specific undesirable qualities afterwards. "If you find yourself saying, 'He'll become more ambitious and responsible once we are married' or 'She'll be more attentive and unselfish once I put a ring on her finger,' then you need to put the brakes on your wedding plans," says Jennifer Gauvain, a marriage and family therapist and the coauthor of How Not to Marry the Wrong Guy: Is He "the One" or Should You Run? "Ask yourself if you're willing to overlook his messy car and 'man cave' because of the amazing way he cherishes and respects you. Can you accept the fact that she will always take in stray animals because she's the most kind and gentle woman you've ever met? You need to marry the person he or she is right now — idiosyncrasies, foibles, quirks and all."

6. Do you bring out the best in each other… or the worst? There's nothing worse than walking on eggshells or feeling off-balance in a relationship. "If you find yourself avoiding difficult conversations or stressed by the hum of low-level anxiety, it's time to reevaluate," says Gauvain. "The right partner will support your ambitions and encourage your dreams. When it's all said and done, you want your spouse to draw out your best qualities and help you minimize the less-than-desirable ones."

7. Can you count on your partner to always do the right thing? It's important to look ahead and imagine what kind of friend, neighbor, in-law, parent or coworker your partner will become over time. "Be honest: Do you think your fiancé/fiancée will do the right thing when it comes to friends and family, even when it is inconvenient or something he or she doesn't like to do?" says Gauvain. "If he's selfish or she's inflexible now, think about how it will feel in the future when you can't depend on your spouse in stressful situations. Life is so much sweeter when you know you can count on your spouse to lift you up, share the load, and help out the ones you love."

8. Is fear of being alone your primary motivation for marriage? "Some singles fear loneliness so desperately, they decide they'd rather be with anyone than no one — but is that really fair to your future spouse?" asks Anderson. "How would this person feel knowing that the main reason you got married was to avoid being alone anymore?" You should only get married because you know this person is right for you and vice-versa. 

9. Is marrying this person in line with your long-term goals? Let us give you an example: "If your dream is to go to Africa and study animals followed by a year of sailing around the world and your partner is devoted to a career that involves very little travel then you will have, at best, a long-distance marriage," says Dr. Neuharth. "And if you can't imagine a house full of children but your partner gets emotional around every baby in sight, you both will have your work cut out for you." Are you willing to compromise your dreams because you can't imagine the two of you being apart? Can you both agree to forge new goals together as a couple? If not, put marriage on hold for now. 

10. Can you take your marriage vows seriously? "If you can't say your vows — or if you're only truthful about part of them — then you really shouldn't say them at all," says Anderson. "Life is long and hard. They call them 'vows' so you'll both be willing to stick it out, no matter what." 

Kimberly Dawn Neumann ( is a New York City-based freelance writer whose work has appeared in Cosmopolitan, Redbook, Women's Health, Marie Claire, Maximand more. A frequent online contributor for's Happen magazine, she's also the author of The Real Reasons Men Commit as well as the founder of 

Article courtesy of
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Sunday, October 26, 2014

An article/tip from

Here's a quick article from Sandy Malone of about the duties of a Maid-of-Honor.  Might be worth a read before you ask your BF to come to the beach to be your maid of honor at your #30a beach wedding. @sunsetbeachwed


Being asked to be the maid of honor is a big deal — even if it's your sister's wedding — the MOH is considered to be the bride's bestie, closest confidante, and the one woman she most trusts to help her get through the joys and tribulations of her wedding planning.

Maid of Honor Duties

Photo by Getty Images (included in the original article)

The MOH is responsible for making sure there will be bridal showers (even if she doesn't host one), planning the bachelorette party, and helping to corral the other bridesmaids for dress fittings and other necessary pre-wedding activities.

But there are also a number of things that the MOH is responsible for on the actual wedding weekend that no etiquette book will warn her about. These five are perfect examples:

1. Monitoring every member of the bridal party's alcohol intake on the wedding day. 
Nobody likes to be the party pooper, but sometimes the MOH has to step up to the plate and tell the girls doing shots while they're dressing to cool it before the ceremony. Giggling on the altar, or tripping on your way down the aisle, isn't acceptable.

2. Knowing where the bride's personal items are at all times. 
She'll probably have an evening bag that has her lipstick, tissues, her phone, and other personal items in it. She'll need to be able retouch lipstick during final photos and she'll need to refresh before her big entrance, toasts and cutting the cake. It's the MOH's job to have things on hand as needed.

See More: 5 Things the Maid of Honor Should Never Do

3. Straightening up the bridal suite before the reception ends. 
If the wedding venue is in the same place as the where the couple is staying, it's easy for the MOH to grab another bridesmaid and slip away to triage the bride and groom's bedroom before they retire for the evening. All the detritus of the bridal party dressing should be removed, the pillows should be fluffed and she might even consider leaving a romantic touch on the pillow.

4. Keeping safe the envelopes of cash.
Depending on the kind of wedding group and where they're getting married, there may not be a special place to put envelopes holding monetary gifts. Sometimes the wedding planner will hold them for the couple until after the wedding, but if there isn't somebody there to do that, the MOH needs to find a hidey-hole in the master suite or elsewhere to stash the booty.

5. Making sure the bride drinks as much water as she does alcohol.
It's easy for a bride to accidentally get drunk. Seriously. With the stress of the day, she may not eat even if there's food in front of her. And if the girls keep pouring champagne or cocktails and that's what she has to drink, she'll be downing it. Switching up between water and wine, so to speak, is a good way to help her make sure she's hydrated and sober when she heads down the aisle.

Owner of Weddings in Vieques, a destination-wedding planning company off the coast of Puerto Rico, Sandy Malone has helped countless couples plan their big day since 2007.

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Friday, October 24, 2014

To all of our beach wedding couples - your wedding photos are still available online!

You may not know this newlyweds, but your destination beach wedding photography is always available for viewing and print ordering in your personal gallery on our photography website - we partner with the Pros at Smugmug to view and deliver prints to you at any time.

Here's the link to our beach photography galleries: - to find yours use the drop downs by year and then month.  If you don't see the drop down for your year, use
this link but change the year to your year at the end of the link.

Photo by Sunset Beach Weddings Photography remember the coupons we offer for prints and merchandise.  Use *5off20* for $5 off any order of $50 or more and use *20off100* for $20 off any order of $100 or more!

You may also want to use the SmugMug App for Android and 
IPhone.  Give us a call if you have any problems with your photos!

Sunset Beach Weddings - Destin, Panama
City Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Okaloosa Island, Navarre Beach,
Pensacola Beach, wedding packages, wedding photography, beach wedding

Ken and Heather Delo
Sunset Beach Weddings
(850) 366-8054

Like us on Facebook for more photos:
Twitter: @sunsetbeachwed

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Have your Sunset Beach Wedding in Panama City Beach!

This is one of the beautiful settings you could have for your Florida
Destination Wedding!  This photo was taken a month ago just after sunset in Panama City Beach's St Andrews State Park.  What a beautiful wedding venue for your beach wedding!  Visit our Facebook page to see photos from all of our weddings.

photo by Sunset Beach Weddings Photography

Ken and Heather Delo
Sunset Beach Weddings
(850) 366-8054

Like us on Facebook for more photos:
Twitter: @sunsetbeachwed

Monday, October 13, 2014

Wedding Invitation Etiquette - Destin Florida Beach Wedding

The Palms of Destin - @palmsofdestin - recently wrote a blog article about Wedding Invitation Etiquette.  

We at Sunset Beach Weddings get asked questions about invitations for our couple's beach weddings fairly frequently.  This article is a quick read and well written so check it out to learn more here:

The Palms of Destin is located in the heart of Destin across the street from the beach.  They have some great reception spaces and catering for your beach wedding.  

Ken and Heather Delo
Sunset Beach Weddings
(850) 366-8054

Like us on Facebook for more photos:
Twitter: @sunsetbeachwed

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Beach Wedding in Destin Florida last year? Happy Anniversary!!

What kind of gift should you get your spouse on your first wedding anniversary?  It's a tough question.  There are some traditional ideas that have remained popular through the years.  Here's an article from Honeymoons Romantic Travel Expert: Susan Breslow Sardone that's worth a quick read.  Many of our customers choose to come back to the same beach that they had their Florida destination wedding on.  What do you plan to do?

anniversary-1500.jpg - Getty Images.
photo by: A toast to love!.  Getty Images. from the original article referenced.

What wedding anniversary gift will you choose to mark another year ? Reaching a new year of marriage is certainly an occasion worth celebrating with a memorable gift. So why not make a gift of an anniversary trip to yourselves?

Couples who can afford to get away on their wedding anniversary have the opportunity to once again frolic like kids, relax, see and experience new places, and savor time alone together -- something you may not have enjoyed since your honeymoon. And that's a gift you owe to one another.

It's even more fun if you choose a destination that symbolizes your anniversary year. Below you'll find traditional anniversary gifts, modern anniversary gifts, and ideas for travel anniversary trips.


Traditional Anniversary Gift: Paper
Modern Anniversary Gift: Plastic/Clock
Travel Anniversary Gift Ideas: Travel Gift Certificate, Airline Tickets

Traditional Anniversary Gift: Cotton
Modern Anniversary Gift: Cotton/China
Travel Anniversary Gift Ideas: Beach Towels for Beach Vacation

Traditional Anniversary Gift: Leather
Modern Anniversary Gift: Crystal/Glass
Travel Anniversary Gift Ideas: Luggage

Traditional Anniversary Gift: Flowers
Modern Anniversary Gift: Linen/Silk
Travel Anniversary Gift Ideas: Lingerie, Hawaiian Vacation

Traditional Anniversary Gift: Wood
Modern Anniversary Gift: Silverware
Travel Anniversary Gift Ideas: Airline Tickets, Cruise

Ken and Heather Delo
Sunset Beach Weddings
(850) 366-8054

Like us on Facebook for more photos:
Twitter: @sunsetbeachwed