Category: Coffee and Confessions

What Being A Bridesmaid Has Taught Me

Some of you may notice I am posting this on a Monday instead of a Friday and the reason for that being so is because I was extremely busy this weekend! On Saturday, one of my best friends got married. This wedding was extremely special to me because it was the first wedding that I wasn’t just a spectator to-in fact I was a bridesmaid.

A lot of people don’t realize the work that goes in to put together a wedding: the blood, sweat and tears so to speak that go into each and every detail. Having been married myself for 3 1/2 years to my high school sweetheart, I know the process and the planning that goes in to creating the perfect wedding. My friend Ashley and I were very lucky to be in each others’ weddings, she was in mine and I have now been in hers.

My friend Ashley & I at my Wedding in 2016.

Being a bridesmaid has taught me quite a bit, I have grown as a person from the experience. A lot of people asked me ‘aren’t you worried that you’re going to get a bridezilla or something?’ And my answer is simple and heartfelt when I reply, ‘not at all.’ For being a bridezilla it’s not in my friend’s nature in the slightest.

Without further ado I’m going to tell you five things I’ve learned from being a bridesmaid.

Getting a front row seat celebrating love is MAGICAL.

1) Be Prepared To Shed A Tear or Two

I wholeheartedly embrace the fact that I am a very emotional person, and I cry when I’m happy as well as when I’m sad, but weddings are so different. You literally get a front row seat to watch two people, who are madly in love, be able to profess their love and make it completely official in the eyes of God and the state.

It’s an even more emotional experience when you stress over the details of the wedding, and you’re nervous the entire night before, and then you finally get to see it all together. The bride in her dress. The groom waiting at the altar for her. I’ve learned that it’s impossible to be standing up at the altar with the bride and groom and not shed a tear (or two!)

Some pre-ceremony ‘waiting for the veil’ selfies.

2) Not Everything Goes According To Plan & That’s Okay!

No matter how much you prepare for the wedding day, it’s impossible for everything to go perfectly. For my friend’s wedding her sister the Maid of Honor (who was also in charge of our hair and makeup) missed the rehearsal because she left the supplies she needed at home. She did make it to the dinner itself after having to drive halfway back home to get the makeup and hair tools that would make the wedding go off without a hitch. Minutes before the ceremony was set to begin, the bride also left behind her veil. So after much scrambling, and a five minute delay to start the ceremony the veil was brought to her and the journey to the alter began. As a bridesmaid, your job is to make sure that to the bride everything seems okay, and that’s exactly what we did! We kept her smiling, laughing and joking the entire time but mostly we kept her relaxed. As long as the bride is healthy, happy, and the groom will be there when she’s ready to walk down the aisle, then everything is perfect. I’ve learned not to sweat the small stuff!

My husband & I at the golden hour, the day FLEW.

3) The day will FLY by.

You put so much time and energy (and money) into this wedding and before you know it, it’s 10:30 pm and you’re preparing to head back to the hotel. Between getting ready, the ceremony, wedding photos, and the actual reception, there is no time for a break or to even look at the clock. But don’t worry, time flies because you’re having fun too, especially when you dance your heart out at the reception, which leads to…

We took a break from dancing to visit the dock.

4) You Get To Dance To Your Heart’s Content

Of course, everyone at the wedding, not just the wedding party, gets to dance, but as a bridesmaid this is your chance to just let loose and have fun! You got your best friend married now you can party it up. My husband and I were literally on the dance floor most of the night, every time we heard a song that we wanted to jam out to we stopped what we were doing (whether we were eating or taking pictures) to dance. I learned that the bridesmaid dress, whether you love it or not (which luckily I did, so much so that I’ll wear it again!) gives you a certain authority to dance to your heart’s content without judgment. You earned that moment, so make the most of it!

My friend Ashley & I at her wedding Saturday.

5) Female Friendships Are Truly Extraordinary

Choosing my friend to be in my bridal party, was super special, but being chosen to be by her side too on her wedding day was nothing short of extraordinary. I can’t put into words what an honor it truly is, and every bit of anxiety spend leading up to that day is totally worth it. To know that someone thinks you’re so important that they want you to be part of their special day is truly the most gratifying and humbling experience. Most people only have one wedding day, and helping to make it extra special is a really cool thing to experience. If you’re a bridesmaid, don’t forget to take a deep breath and enjoy the magic of love. It’s a really amazing thing.

Ryan, Ashley, Myself & Tom ( from L to R)

I’d like to wish my friend Ashley and her new husband Ryan all the love, happiness, and health in the world. Being a bridesmaid was super special but being their friend and being able to watch through the years how their life together will unfold-now that is the greatest gift of all!

Happy 4th of July

In honor of the 4th of July this coming week I’d like to dedicate and wish a very happy Independence Day to all of my readers both here and abroad. I thank God every day to live in a country where I can chase my dreams and have my entrepreneurism encouraged and supported. Also, I would love to give a shoutout to those who’ve served and those who continue to serve in the military. We’re truly the land of the free because of the brave men and women like you who selflessly protect our freedom.

While we all have different backgrounds, religions, racial ethnicities and YES even different political beliefs we must always remember how lucky we are to voice our differences because we live here in America.

Happy 4th of July, God bless you all!

Inside Brittany’s Makeup Bag

Hello!

With June approaching to a near close as well as my friend’s wedding weeks away. I wanted to share with you all my favorite “go to” lip products since I’m obsessed with bold, sexy, red lips. It’s very flattering for all types of skin tones and is a timeless classic look that paired with a smokey eye is perfect for a night out or a paired with a neutral eye is perfect for a mid morning brunch. The great thing about red lip is that you can dress it up OR dress it down depending on the rest of your makeup.

Red lips look AMAZING on real dark hair and light eyes; as well as dark eyes and light hair it creates the popping effect that photographs really well and makes your teeth and skin look brighter. 

So without further ado I give you my top 3 red lip choices:

1. Rimmel Exaggerate full color lip liner (022 Rapture) I use this in all my pictures as my lip liner because it’s really a bold but not overpowering lip liner that sets the tone for dramatic lips.

2. Revlon color stay ultimate liquid lipstick (040 Brilliant Bordeaux) 

3. Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks (Outlaw)

In the picture I posted earlier I used the Rimmel liner and Revlon color stay lipstick first. Then I waited till the latter dried before adding the Revlon lipstick on top. It gives my lips the rustic rose lip look that’s in my photos. Don’t be afraid to mix lipsticks to get a color that screams you and your style. I really love Revlon and Kat Von D liquid lipsticks because they literally last forever. I usually have to scrub them off with my nutragena makeup remover towelettes so if you’re going to a wedding or even to work you can count on these lipsticks to go the distance with you.

How do I grade the quality of these 3 products?: A+ their color is spectacular and they last at least 12 hours which makes them worth every dime!

How do I grade the price of these 3 products?:  B- $34.14 (for all three) sure there are plenty of more productive things you can buy with $34.00 and change, however, you’ll be hard pressed to find the quality and any quantity at the level of these three products. Each product has lasted me 6-8 months per product so if you switch them up and out you’ll be hard pressed to need to go shopping anytime soon.

STILL while the Rimmel and Revlon products are very cost efficient, the Kat Von D product is a little pricey ($20.00) but they are worth spending the money so that’s why I gave it an overall B-. 

Happy Product Playing! If you do try these please take a pic and use the hashtag 

#insidebrittanysmakeupbag so I can check it out on your gorgeous self😁

Happy Father’s Dad!

This picture is brought to by 2001…I’d like to wish all the Fathers, Grandfathers, Stepfathers, and even you Mothers who wear both hats, a very Happy Father’s Day!

There a few things in life more precious then the bond between parents and children. I was very blessed to have grown up with such an amazing set of parents but since it’s Father’s Day I’m only going to discuss one. My Dad, and I’d like to tell you all a little about him (if ya’ll don’t mind).

My Dad is a man of many hobbies: he’s an avid hunter, proud member of a gun club, he’s golfed, scuba dived, built and flew model airplanes and still fishes to this day but if you asked my Dad what his favorite hobby is-it’s spending time with his family and that’s been the most consistent hobby he’s had.

My Dad passed on his work ethic, his morals and values to my brother and I. He taught us the value of working hard and believing in our dreams. He often went without and worked overtime to provide my brother and I with the nicest/newest things and he helped us achieve the very best opportunities in life. My Dad has a wonderful sense of humor, he’s a loyal friend, and would give anyone the shirt off his own back.

As a child, you groan sometimes when people tell you that you look or act just like your parents. I have the same shape eyes as my Dad, his smile, his ears, his forehead and eyebrows not to mention a ton of his mannerisms. I am often told I resemble my Mom the most but my at my deepest nature, I am my Father’s daughter. From his love of football (not the Jets for me, sorry not sorry Dad), hockey (you were successful in making me a die hard Devils fan), to his sense of humor and love for travel and adventure. Mostly my Dad gave us something irreplaceable and invaluable: his time, work ethic, values & unconditional love.

Happy Fathers Day to all of the Fathers, Grandfathers, Stepfathers, Uncles who are Father/Grandfather Figures, Godfathers, and even you wonder women who wear both hats of Mom and Dad. Your role in your kids’ lives is truly irreplaceable, your love is unending, your sacrifices are appreciated, and you make more of a difference then you’ll ever know!

Lore Olympus: A Review

Hello and Happy Friday Loves!

I’m feeling refreshed and I’m also feeling really excited to give you a review of the website I came across called Webtoons. If you are a comic nerd like myself you are really going to enjoy the review that I have for you today! I’ve been noticing a lot on Facebook and Instagram this comic Lore Olympus being advertised. Anyone who truly knows me knows that I’m totally obsessed with Greek culture, if past lives actually exist I’m pretty sure I was Greek in at least one of them. I particularly enjoyed the story of Persephone and Hades so of course when I saw this advertised it peaked my interest. Naturally, I had to check it out and boy am I glad I did!

Lore Olympus is a modern take on the story of Hades (Lord of the Underworld) and Persephone (Goddess of Spring) by Rachel Smythe. What I really love about this comic is it tells the story in a way that totally adapts it to today’s society and culture.

Having read Superman, Wonder Woman and yes, even the Labyrinth Coronation (the back story of Jareth from the Labyrinth) I will admit that when it comes to comics, I’m super judgmental and picky about the art. It is probably the only time you can get. However, the artist (and writer!) Rachel Smythe really captures her reader’s attention by using colors very deliberately in every panel. Color schemes actually become their own characters and reflect the tone of the story in a way that’s so simple somehow it conveys complexity. 

Keeping with the pattern of contradiction, the art is simultaneously unfinished while being refined. Loose lines bleed into line-less colors which is very unique & creative. What I love about the art is the way it fits the way the story ebbs and flows. It, too, bleeds from loose lines into line-less, whimsical memories of the past. 

The story is very creatively told and hits on many topics such as first love, jealous, sexual assault, and even insecurities about one’s appearance in relation to one’s peers. The author and illustrator, Rachel, is not afraid to shy away from tough topics without being too graphic. She tackles them in a very respectful manner that makes it both easy to relate to and not uncomfortable to read.

This webtoon comic updates every Sunday, with paid members getting fast access to it on Saturday’s. Honestly, the only downfall about this particular comic is you have to wait a whole week until you can find out what happens next. The story is both funny, tragic and engaging it leaves readers wanting more!

You can check it out here: https://m.webtoons.com/en/romance/lore-olympus/episode-56/viewer?title_no=1320&episode_no=60&webtoon-platform-redirect=true

A Million Sentimental Reasons: A Memorial Day Open Letter Tribute to an Old Friend.

Dear Nick,

This weekend can’t go by with honorable mention to, you, old friend. I can’t believe it’s been nearly 8 years since you’ve lost your life in Afghanistan….8 Years is a long enough time to settle into a different kind of normal since you left but I live in fear of one day forgetting the sound of your voice or laughter. I try to keep my memory sharp.

While I believe there are heroes among us everyday, I was blessed to have known a real one. Looking back on it, we wouldn’t have gotten to know each other if not for the church volunteer work we did through the years at St. John’s because we were in different grades and had different friends but I’m glad we did truly get to know one another. You had such a huge heart, you cared what everyone had to say, nobody’s worries or cares were too big or too small for you to offer your thoughts and opinions on the matter. Also, you had the most contagious smile and laugh, I find myself chuckling to myself even now as I write this cause I can picture you shaking your head with a grin at “sentimental Brittany”.

I can’t help it though, I miss so many things about you, from the sound of your voice, the mirth in your bright blue eyes when you told a joke, to the way your head would tilt back and laugh heartily if I managed to tell a joke worthwhile to you. You were giving, kind, funny, compassionate and handsome on the inside and out.

You were one of the few people in my life who made me feel like it didn’t matter what caste society lumped you into: nerd or jock, drama/choir gleek (that was me) or cheerleader, honor student or delinquent you were a friend to all. Nobody was better than anybody in your eyes, you saw beauty in everyone not a label. I never got to tell you how much I loved and valued your presence (though it was brief) in my life, I don’t have a picture of us together partying it up (because we came from different social circles), but I always thought that I’d see you again, that there would be time for that, a drink and catch up at a local bar for that, after all I had memories along with those who volunteered with us.

As I watched the sunset through the cracks in my vertical blinds on August 10th 2011, I sobbed-not just because I realized I would never get to have that catch up drink with you- but because I lost a friend, all of our small Jersey Shore town did the day we lost you. We lost a friend, your family lost a son and brother, and our town lost a shining star.

Thank you Nick Ott, for your service and your ultimate sacrifice. Keep watching over us in heaven, big guy, we all miss and love you so much.

Photography Fun

I am no photographer, but I enjoy the anesthetics of a good view and the modern conveniences of having a smart phone which allows me to capture the moment at large.

I’m not someone who goes out drinking, usually when I go to bars I find myself people watching. Interactions between friends, lovers, and small families are often more fun then a hangover the next morning.

You get to see the best and the worst of people. The selfish and selfless. Often I contemplate what a casual observer thinks when they look at me: do they thing I’m alone when I’m, in fact, happily married? Do they think I’m a secret millionaire who longs for things like a large group of loud friends (which I have but cannot always make it out with)? People never cease to amuse me.

Take for instance the guy who’s telling an over the top story for the young woman watching with rapt interest at what he has to say. He’s nervous, I can read him like a book, every two seconds his hands reach up and ruffle his own hair. Or the old man sitting alone in the corner watching the two with a wary secret smile of his own. Everyone has a story to tell, everyone has habits and patterns which say more about the person then anything they could tell you about themselves. The woman who hurried past and looking down, is often self consciousness and feeling out of place. It’s amazing what we see when we stop and watch.

What is your favorite out and about activity? Leave a comment below and tell me what you think!