A YEAR AGO TODAY, I SAID YES!

A Year ago today, I said yes to the love of my life. A year ago today, Xavier and I made a commitment to our relationship. A year ago, my ears heard the sweetest sound with one of the loveliest questions and my heart-felt a love so graciously beautiful. A year ago today, God filled our hearts with his grace and filled us with a love so great, that we can only hope to mirror in our future marriage. Its been a while since I’ve shared any news on the blog with you all, but I felt today was the perfect occasion. Today marks the day Xavier asked me to be his future wife, his fiancé and the woman who will be by his side to share life with. This past year of engagement has been another chapter in his and I’s book, and its been all in all, a great one. We have gone through ups and downs, shared laughs and cries but most importantly we have done it all with love. We have come to the know the importance of respect, communication and love and most importantly putting God as our center. In only 39 days we will be walking down the aisle to say our I DO’s! Seeing all these pictures brought a smile to my face today, because how much we have grown and how important it is to still be smiling and laughing together on a day-to-day basis. I couldn’t be more excited for whats to come for Xavier and I and couldn’t be more grateful it will be together.

I have a lot of catching up to do with you all, but life has been busy, but will be keeping you all posted soon!

Cheers to us Baby! Cheers to a lifetime together! Love you.

Jen<3

WEDDING WEDNESDAY

Processed with VSCOcam with t1 presetIt’s wedding Wednesday guys! I have been postponing this post for quite a while! Mostly due to the lack of time I have had for “me.” But that’s ok, I know that sometimes, life get’s busy and we must attend to it! Today I wanted to start sharing with you all a little journey of mine and my fiancé’s. It’s been a mix of emotions. As many of you know, we got engaged this past October while on our trip to New York. You can read more about those adventures, HERE and HERE. Well, since our engagement, we have been bombarded with the endless questions of “when is the wedding?” “where is it going to be?” “Do you have your dress?” and “Where are you going on your honeymoon?”… SIGH! It was so overwhelming at first, because truth be told, we mostly just wanted to take in the fact that we were engaged and all the excitement we felt. But we understand that the same way we are excited, that many of our friends and family also are excited too!

So long behold, the wedding plans started that same month, mostly because we were scared. Scared because we quickly learned from many that venues and vendors book WAY to QUICKLY! AH! lol. So to be brief, I wanted a way to catch you all up on what we have done thus far… I figured I would start blogging about our wedding planning and the adventure it has been for us. So most Wednesday’s I will try to fill you all in on where we stand on our plans and our feelings thus far. Mostly because “Wedding Wednesday” sounds good and we actually will be getting married on a Wednesday! genius right? lol

To catch you all up from October, I will tell you this.. we have felt the stress of planning and of the financial toll it takes out of most planning a wedding. Don’t get me wrong, we still are VERY excited that sooner than later, we will be a married couple! But to be very honest, the amount of time, research, meetings, planning and money, it can also get very overwhelming. Let’s face it, we are not the rich and famous! lol. But thank God, that we have all that we need, along with the support and love of our family. Everyone has been so supportive, including our friends and for that we couldn’t be more grateful.

I’m most excited to be the future wife of my love.. and to be sharing our lives together. Because through all the plans, I feel we all have to remember that it’s not about the size of the wedding party or the cake or the colors, but about the marriage and love, that means more! Everything else is extra and makes it more pretty! That keeps the anxiety to a minimum for me, and brings everything back to perspective!

The journey thus far has been steady for the most part, even though having 2 other friends engaged at the same time will make you feel as you are behind on your planning! lol That’s what happens when most of our conversations turn into “wedding” convos. And we end up asking each other ‘what he have done’ and ‘what we still have to do’. Thanks Desi and Anita! lol Through it all, we have our laughs in those conversations. 

Well guys this is what we have been able to accomplish since October:

  • √  a date
  • √  a venue
  • √ an amazing photographer (Beca Companioni)
  • √ a wedding dress!! ♥
  • √ 1 of 7 bridesmaids’ dress
  • √ And a successful engagement party

Not too shabby huh? We are at 9 months of the countdown, and I know that from here on, time will move quickly. So more research is being done and more things will eventually get crossed off the list. For now we will be thankful for what he have done thus far. We are trying our hardest to keep the cost down, since we are paying for the wedding.. so research has been crucial. In further post, I will fill you in on more of what we have crossed off our list and go more into details about the “finding the dress story” and the “venue story”… and any suggestions for you future brides and grooms out there!

Here’s a little fun thing we got in the mail a couple of days ago, that made it all that much real for us… Our free wedding sample kit from minted. Made me realize that soon enough our wedding date and names will be on a invitation and save the dates! yikes! I’m so excited. The Free sample kit is lovely. A great way for you to see their quality and the variety that you have to choose from! I included pictures of whats included in the kit. Isn’t the kit super cute?=)

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Planning a wedding too? We would love to hear all about it and any advice you may have for us! Stay tuned for more of ‘Wedding Wednesday!’

-Jen<3

ENGAGEMENT & WEDDING PARTY FESTIVITIES!

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetEngagement & Wedding party festivities took place this past saturday night and it could not have gone any better! As many of my frequent readers know, Xavier and I got engaged in October while we were in New York. If you didn’t know here’s how he Proposed! Its worth reading in my opinion lol. ;P Well, since this past October, we have been in “planning mode.” I can tell you that the so-called ‘planning mode’ comes and goes, because it gets overwhelming at times. So we plan a little, take a breather and pick up again! It’s been working thus far for us lol.  It’s an exciting time for us even with the moments of stress! Because if you’ve never planned a wedding before… let me tell you, it can be time-consuming.

Part of our wedding plans also included a special little party that we had thought up. Xavier and I, have only but a couple of mutual friends and most of our friends don’t really know each other. So our plans were to host a small “Engagement Party” for the sole purpose of making it an opportunity for our friends to meet. We had to call it an “engagement party’ for the purpose of keeping it a surprise to our Bridesmaids and Groomsmen. What most of our friends didn’t know was that our plan was to throw a little party for our wedding party, to ask our closest friends to be our groomsmen and bridesmaids. We wanted it to be special and intimate because we wanted our gals and guys to get to meet (most for the first time) so that come wedding day, they would know each other. We knew that throughout the year more opportunities would have come where they would have been able to meet, but.. we wanted the first time to be special.  So along came our little “Engagement & Wedding Party Festivities!”

Xavier and I’s, closest friends are very special to us and it means a lot to us, for them to be a part of our special day! A lot of preparation went in to making our engagement party a success. Our purpose was to make them feel special and to let them know how much we appreciate them as friends. Along with how much they mean to us as individuals and as a couple.  I went to my handy-dandy “Pinterest” and started gathering my ideas for the party. To try to keep it simple for you all, just know that about 90% of our engagement party was all DIY!  We really wanted to make it beautiful and timeless at an affordable price, so most of our decor and food we prepared ourselves and with the help of my family! Because lets face it, for the average joe, a budget is of the essence!  We couldn’t be more grateful for all of those who helped us on saturday!

This is how we asked our gals and guys to be our ‘Bridesmaids’ and ‘Groomsmen’  and how we celebrated our Engagement!! We hope you enjoy!

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Before our Surprise!
Before our Surprise!
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Our little “will you be my” surprise gifts!

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This little lady was sooo excited for us! She wouldn't leave my side!
This little lady was sooo excited for us! She wouldn’t leave my side!

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My brothers and little sister!
My MINI-maid of Honor
My MINI-maid of Honor!! the love of my life!
The Groomsmen!! =)
The Handsome Groomsmen!! =)
My Beautiful Bridesmaids!! <3
My Beautiful Bridesmaids!! ❤
We're getting married!
We’re getting married!

Thank you again to all my family who were so gracious to help us this past saturday and to those who couldn’t make it but were in our hearts! We love you all!

Thank You to all our amazing friends that came to share an amazing night with us and for saying YES! to sharing Xavier’s and I’s journey into marriage by being our Bridesmaids and Groomsmen!

Even though we get overwhelmed by all the planning, we are so very excited for the months to come and for our future plans leading up to the BIG DAY and forever! We know that God will guide us through this journey and we will get through it all!

 Jen and Xavier

REMINISCING ON OUR NYC TRIP & SOME TIPS

NYCToday, we’re reminiscing on our NYC trip last month. Ive been slacking  a little with my blog post lately due to much time spent searching for “wedding stuff” and have postponed much of my blogging! Sorry in advance y’all! But today, I decided that it would be the perfect day to blog about our trip to New York, which was exactly one month ago. Mainly for three main reasons.. One, both Xavier and I woke up ‘missing NYC.’ Two, exactly one month ago, we woke up in the big city ready to take on all it threw our way. Least but not least…Today marks exactly one month that we have been engaged!!! eek! Isn’t this the perfect day to blog about or trip?? i think so!  We really felt that this was one of the most successful trips Xavier and I have taken together. We had a budget before we left home and we did amazing sticking to our budget. Well, I won’t ramble too much about our trip! I will try to get to the point. Mainly because we’re so excited to share a lot of our pictures with you all. We already shared our eating adventures with you here on Eating in the Big Apple, and now we’re excited to share the places we visited! This trip was not only fun, exciting and a big adventure, but one of the most memorable that Xavier and I will share in our lives! We truly are so blessed to have been able to have such great experiences in NY and just the opportunity to take a trip like we did! I hope you all enjoy our memories as much as we did. Since there are sooo many pictures that we would love to share with you, we are going to have to break down our adventure. The way I will be doing this, is by breaking our days spent in New york, day by day. In a way we will have a series of our NYC reminiscing throughout the next two weeks (give or take guys.) Each post will be dedicated to that day we spent in NY and what fun adventures we ran into that day. So please stay tuned! We are very excited to share them with you! NYCUS

Before we move on to the good stuff.. We wanted to share some of our little insider tips that helped us throughout our adventure there. Here are our NYC tips before we share our lovely pictures with you all. Most of these helped us stay on budget! I hope they are helpful and I hope you put them to use if you plan on making a trip there soon!

::TIPS::

-One thing that I highly recommend if you’re going to be in the city for a couple of days and want to go the more touristy areas is purchasing The New York Pass. They have over 80 city attractions that can be visited by just showing the New York city pass. By the time you add them all up at regular price you’ll probably end up spending more than you would if you were to just purchase the pass! This of course is as long as you make sure to visit it enough places so that the pass pays for itself or more, you’ll pretty much have a win win situation!

– One of our biggest tips when visiting the city is also to bunch together the different places you want to visit by districts or at least their near by neighbors. It’ll save you a lot of walking and the hassle of going from a far place to another far place! Trust me, if you’re on limited time, you’ll appreciate this!

-Another tip for anyone traveling to the city and on a budget, skip the taxi fares from place to place.. (they’ll add up) Instead purchase the 7 day unlimited subway pass! This metro card will come in most handy! It’s $30.00 pp, but so worth the buy. The subway can get tricky, and not every time you swipe will the subway entries open..what it will take is your money! So instead, the unlimited pass will let you swipe till the gate opens and it will last up to 7 days, as many rides as you’d like! Score!

-Lastly, Download the HopStop app for your iPhone (if you have one) if you’re a risk taker like us and want to get around the city ‘subway style’! Once we got the hang of it, and read the instructions, lol, it was super easy! It will tell you the near by stations and where to get on and off! Easy breezy! It will take you  to your destination by the nearest subway station close to it and give you directions from there on. Sweet!

Hope those come in handy, and just like our  previous NYC post, We would love to take you all on our journey in the city day by day! So stay tuned for the upcoming posts.. Only this time, ‘day by day’ will be ‘one blog at a time’  so that each day gets the attention it deserves,lol. ;O

 

So don’t go anywhere and stay tuned! I look forward to sharing with you all such a sweet experience for us.

..oh..and…

..happy one month of engagement to us..

..love you babe..

NYCOCT17

Jen<3

THE PROPOSAL!

IMG_7883The proposal! Yes, our proposal! It was simply perfect. Xavier and I are officially engaged and we could not be more excited! Not only are we excited but we are so remarkably blessed! Our relationship has been a blessing in disguise from the very beginning. Xavier and I met in Nursing school and to many’s surprise, he and I were not even friends in the beginning. I was a little apprehensive to start a friendship with Xavier, mostly because of his “I’m a stud and I know it” kinda walk he had, lol. According to him, he always just “wanted my attention.” I didn’t give him my attention until some semesters after in school where we actually had to be in clinical’s together. We got to know each other some more and we actually became great friends. Towards the end of nursing school our good friend Anita, aka cupid, started stirring things up for us and long behold the truth came out! We actually liked each other and we both were okay with it. Our last semester in nursing school, Xavier and I were pretty much inseparable and he asked me to be his girlfriend! That moment alone was unforgettable… picnic by the bay, asking me to be his girlfriend and dolphins swimming right by the water. No seriously, that’s exactly how it went! Just lovely. We also have been so blessed to share graduation together, passing our boards together and being hired as Nurses weeks apart!  Some months into working we even got our own place! So many memories.. and to think that we have so many more in our future together fills my heart with so much love. God has truly been watching over us and for that we are grateful.

For those of you that have followed my blog, you’ll know that Xavier and I had a trip planned to NYC this past week. That trip was ‘supposedly’ meant to be a mini-vacation to NYC and to attend an event in Madison square garden.  Little did I know, one of the most important questions in my life would be asked. On that day, Xavier and I woke up to the usual New York city noise and the hustle of the crowd. Little did I know Xavier had been planning this day for some months. Our day started by getting some very delicious breakfast and a walk in the park. After our bellies were full we headed to the world trade center memorial. From there we had plans to meet up with Xavier’s friend and his girlfriend to head to Brooklyn. After some debating on where we were really going to meet them and lots of painful walking, Xavier told me that we would meet them at the Brooklyn bridge, so we could walk across it. Lets jut say I was not a happy camper and my feet were in so much pain that I quickly told him, “I am not walking the bridge!” Well to my surprise, Xavier turned around and gave me a very sturdy and loud “WE ARE WALKING THE BRIDGE!” I was so stunned that I just stayed quiet and agreed,lol. I gave in, sucked up the pain and headed to the bridge in pain but excited to see the great Brooklyn bridge! Little did I know, this was all planned.

THE PROPOSAL: We got to the start of the bridge, Xavier stopped to put his jacket on and get his camera ready so we could take some awesome shots! I quickly followed his steps so that we wouldn’t have to stop in the middle of the bridge and hold up people who were doing the same. ( This was the moment that he very sneakily put the ring in his pocket that he had been carrying in his camera bag!) I was so blinded by the view that I didn’t even notice this! lol. Well, we walked close to the middle of the bridge were we met up with his friend and his girlfriend and we all kept walking together. To my surprise as well, they were in on the plan! Just about midway on the bridge we all stopped to take some shots. Xavier asked to use my camera so he could take a panorama shot while I took a picture of his friend and his girlfriend. ( This was the moment he took a picture of a small piece of paper with some very important words) Once again, I of course did not even notice, lol. Well right after, Xavier asked me to give his camera to his friend so he could take a picture of us on the bridge. The next part, is the best part of this story!!

On October 17, at 3:20 in the afternoon, Xavier and I made one of the best memories in our lives thus far. He asked me to grab my camera and look at the cool shot he had taken with my camera. To my surprise, and it was a very unexpected surprise! It was the most beautiful picture i had ever seen! It was him holding a little piece of paper with the best words on it… “WILL YOU MARRY ME?”  The moment was perfect, the timing was perfect and the setting was breathtaking! A this moment all I could do was cry. I literally threw myself on him while he was on one knee and ended up on my knees too! lol.  I cried out of excitement and the feeling of love that was rushing through me. It was a feeling like no other and a feeling that I cannot even describe with words.  Knowing that you will spend the rest of your life along with the love of your life, your soul mate and your lover is the best feeling ever.

It was a moment that I will cherish for the rest of my life and that when thinking back on it, will always bring a smile to my face. It will be a memory that will be in our hearts forever and a moment that will remind us of our love. Our proposal was perfect for us in every way possible. We were experiencing a new place together, doing something that we enjoy doing as a couple (taking pictures.)Our story thus far has always had ‘unexpected moments’ and this is another that will be added to our list. These ‘unexpected’ moments for Xavier and I have been the best moments and moments that show us our endless blessings.

We are so thrilled for our future ahead. I know that I cannot imagine spending a future without him. He makes me better, he supports me, takes care of me, loves me unconditionally and makes me complete. I know that we will always be there for each other through the good times and the bad. I can only pray that God continues to bless us in our future ahead. We are very excited to share this moment with all our loved ones and with you all. So here are our perfect pictures captured by Mike, Xavier’s friend. THE PROPOSAL.

ps. It was a little windy that day.. lol

love,

Jen and Xavier.

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Thanks to everyone who has already congratulated us and to our families for giving us your blessing. It means the world to us and we love you all.

A special thanks to Mike and Jisbely for helping Xavier capture this special moment in our lives.

Jen & X.

*all images are property of La Vida, life as it comes