Wednesday, April 26, 2017

10 Wedding Favor Ideas

Although favors are not required, they are a nice touch to your wedding. Set aside a small portion of your budget for favors. 

Below are ten fun favors that guests will actually use and enjoy.

1. Lip Balm 

2. Candy

8. Coffee

Monday, April 24, 2017

Cherry Blossoms | Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Spring is officially here. And it shows at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

New York had a late start to spring this year with some surprising snow last month.

Finally everything is in full bloom. It's the perfect time to visit. 

Pro tip: Brooklyn Botanic Garden offers free admission on Tuesdays & Saturday mornings [10AM-12PM].

My favorite flowers in bloom are tulips & cherry blossoms

Have you been to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden? Will you be checking out the cherry blossoms this year?

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

10 Ways To Save Money For Your Honeymoon + FREE Honeymoon Planner

Weddings are expensive enough. Now let's throw in an extravagant trip...

There are a few simple ways you can save for your honeymoon. Don't forget to download your free honeymoon planner

Without further ado, let's get into the ways to save:

BOOK AT THE RIGHT TIME: Booking your flight in advance can save you tons on your airfare. Two and a half months prior to travel is the ideal time to buy. Flights often tend to be priced better during the week [you may have heard that tip to buy on Tuesdays!]. 

CASH BACK: I do the majority of my shopping online. This allows me to save time and money. I use Ebates to get cash back on purchases. Ebates offers a Chrome plugin and pops up whenever a site offers cash back. Every few months, they will mail you a check or offer a higher value gift card. This is a great way to save money on purchases you'd already be making!

PENNY CHALLENGE: The Penny Challenge is a fun little way to save some money over the course of a year. Set aside one penny the first day, two pennies the second day, and so on. This 52 week challenge will help you set aside $668. For extra savings, have your partner do their own penny challenge. Double the savings!

POSTPONE YOUR HONEYMOON: Weddings are so expensive. Joe and I were planning to go on our honeymoon a couple months after our wedding but have decided to postpone it. This will allow us time to save up and hopefully have more vacation time to use. 

CONSIDER A HONEYMOON REGISTRY: There are a number of sites that offer honeymoon registries. Joe and I went with Honeyfund. This allows your guests to gift money towards various honeymoon expenses [i.e. $50 towards airfare, $30 towards a couples massage, etc.]. 

SET PRIORITIES: Consider what's important to you for your honeymoon. Does a room with a view matter to you? Could you utilize public transportation or would you be more comfortable taking taxis? What excursions do you care about most?

COMPARE COMPARE COMPARE: There are tons of websites for booking travel, especially at a discount. My starting point is usually Expedia and I will compare rates elsewhere after. You may not always get a better deal but you may get more included in your stay. 

CREDIT CARD POINTS:  If you can, sign up for a credit card that offers points or miles--Joe and I both signed up for the Chase Sapphire Reserve in January. This card does have an annual fee attached to it ($450) but it also includes a $300 travel credit, up to $100 reimbursement for TSA Pre or Global Entry, extra points from travel & dining, and a bonus for spending $4000 in the first 3 months [currently they are offering 50,000 points for spending $4,000 in the first three months]. I promise this isn't sponsored [I wish it were!] but this is one of the ways we are affording so many flights this year. I also want to note that we already had a bunch of wedding expenses and needed to spend some money this year anyway. I wouldn't want anyone to get into debt over trying to get some travel rewards.

FREQUENT FLYER MILES: Sign up for frequent flyer programs and stick with the same airlines [especially if you fly regularly]. I use American Airlines and United [mainly because my dad signed me up for those years ago!].

RESEARCH: Spend some time researching everything you want to do while on your honeymoon. Figure out if there will be any unexpected expenses. Joe and I visited Costa Rica a few years back and were surprised with an exit tax for leaving the country! I like creating a budget and loose itinerary before any trip so I know what to expect. 

Where are you planning to go for your honeymoon? Please let me know in the comments!


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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

What To Buy At The Sephora Spring Sale 2017

Stop everything, because Sephora finally announced their spring sale and it starts now.

Everything is 10-15% off in store and online [discount depends on your beauty insider status].

Everyone qualifies. No exceptions. No minimum.

Keep reading to get all the details and figure out what to buy!


To get the 15% discount, you must be a VIB Rouge or VIB member:

To qualify for VIB Rouge: You need to have spent $1000 in one calendar year.

To qualify for VIB: You need to have spent $350 in one calendar year.

To get the 10% discount, you must be a Beauty Insider:

Sign up for the Beauty Insider program here.


April 18-24: VIB Rouge gets 15% off in store and online. Use the code ROUGESPRING at checkout. 

April 19-24: VIB gets 15% off in store and online. Use the code VIBSPRING at checkout.

April 20-24: Beauty Insiders get 10% off in store and online. Use the code BISPRING at checkout.

You can use the same code as many times as you'd like through April 24th!


Can't decide what to buy? I've got you covered!

Since Sephora only offers a couple sales each year, this is an excellent time to invest in skincare gadgets, hair tools, and that gorgeous new eyeshadow palette.

I've broken my suggestions down into three categories: skincare, makeup, and hair. 

Check out my recommendations below:






Use Ebates to get cash back on online purchases. Sign up here so you can start saving!

What do you plan to pick up from the Sephora sale? Anything else I need to check out?


Monday, April 10, 2017

Washington DC in One Day

On Saturday, Joe and I took a day trip to Washington DC for the Cherry Blossom Festival.

I thought it would be helpful to breakdown our day in case you are interested in making a day trip to DC [especially if you are located in New York City].

Here was our timeline:

5AM: We used Gett to get from the Upper East Side to Penn Station
6AM: Our Amtrak train departed for DC
9:30AM: We arrived in DC 
10AM: We checked out the Cherry Blossom Festival Parade

10:30AM: We wandered through the National Mall towards the Washington Monument, Reflecting Pool, and Lincoln Memorial

12PM: We met Joe's cousin for lunch at the Old Abbitt Grill [and snapped a picture of the White House on the way]

1:30PM: We picked up Astro Doughnuts & headed to Tidal Basin

We took our time walking around and enjoying Tidal Basin

We even recreated one of our engagement photos [with the addition of some gorgeous cherry blossoms].

The majority of the cherry blossoms were damaged due to unexpected snow and rain but we still found a few beautiful trees.

4PM: We headed to the Smithsonian National Museum of American History [free!]. The line to check bags [required] took about 30 minutes. We mainly went to check out Julia Child's kitchen. There are a number of different Smithsonian museums and most are free. 

5PM: We walked to Oyamel for dinner. I have mixed feelings about this spot. This Mexican restaurant has delicious food but the hosts were horrible and we had to wait forever for a table. 

6:30PM: We walked back to Union Station to catch our 7:20 train back to New York City

All in all--the day went smoothly and we saw everything we really wanted to see. 

Transportation: We walked everywhere [13+ miles!] with the exception of one metro ride from Union Station to Metro Center [Red Line] for the Cherry Blossom Festival Parade.

DC does have Lyft if you want a faster/easier way to get around.

Cost: We are on a tight budget and needed to make this trip affordable. We only ended up paying for Amtrak tickets [they do offer student and AAA discounts], food, one Metro ride, and one Gett ride. Overall the cost was reasonable for us.

Next Visit: We obviously couldn't see everything in one day. Next time we want to check out Capital Hill, Holocaust Museum, and Georgetown.

Did I miss anything? Please leave a comment if there are other spots I need to check out.

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