It was a perfect fall day. The forecast called for a thunderstorm at the exact time of the ceremony but as the day went on, it was clear that it was not meant to be. As it turned out, the storm veered north and missed the wedding entirely. God continues to bless us with wonderful weather for our brides!
Jessamyn and Chad were married outdoors at the beautiful Pittsburgh Botanic Garden. Everything about the day was so special! Jessamyn’s gorgeous dress, the adorable flower girls, the handsome groom and groomsmen. Take a look at the photos and swoon. The vendors are all listed below. Call us for your outdoor or barn wedding! We’d love to assist you!
Are you a flea market fanatic? Love a good garage sale? Go gaga over thrift stores? If you can answer YES to any of these questions this post is for you!
Many a wedding or private event can be embellished with items from a thrift or resale shop! If you’re a bride or mother of the bride, don’t be surprised if you find what you’re looking for at a great vintage store. It’s worth taking a look! Incorporating gently used tablecloths, linen napkins, glass, and other barely used treasures can cut your decor budget substantially.
Since we are from the Moon/Airport West area, we’re going to tell you about the awesome choices in our own back yard.
Fenna’s Consignment and Retail Shop- Owner Kelly Cain has re-purposed her former business space into a beautiful vintage and retail shop. Opened just a few short weeks ago, we have stopped in numerous times to ooh and aah over Kelly’s handpicked selections. You will find an amazing assortment of vintage and gently used designer jeans and clothing, housewares, vintage glass, doilies, and much much more. Kelly has partnered with local women artists and offers one of a kind necklaces and other jewelry items as well. Do yourself a favor and stop by Fenna’s Grand Opening this Saturday, February 4th at 10 am. The location is 7051 Steubenville Pike, Oakdale, PA. 15071. Click HERE to get to Fenna’s Facebook page.
Consignment Cottage-Owner Terry Chesky and Joanne Cain of Katherine’s Daughter Events have been friends for many years! This is one of our favorite stops for home decor and a room upstairs is solely devoted to it. There are racks of clothing upstairs and down, a shoe section, designer purses, jewelry, handmade items, and even a maternity section. You owe it to yourself to visit Consignment Cottage on a regular basis to check out the new additions! Click HERE to visit CC’s website.
EcoChic- This is Consignment Cottage’s sister store, also owned by Terry Chesky. We can’t drive into Moon Township without stopping here! There are so many great deals, interesting accessories, shoes, clothing and housewares, you owe it to yourself to make the trip. We bought the cutest purse here not long ago and it never fails to garner big compliments. Click HERE to visit EcoChic’s website.
Let us know in the comments section below if you have a favorite flea market, consignment store, or thrift store. We’d also love to hear your stories of re-purposing gently used items in creative ways!
It was a beautiful fall day. We hoped for sun and sure enough God granted our wish! Sara and I arrived early to begin the coordination of Ashley and Eli’s wedding. April and her dedicated staff at Mocha Rosewas there to place all the stunning floral arrangements. E.F. Lightingstrung twinkle lights on the greenery in Aaron Courtyard. Rachel, Steve, Bob and Mack at Rodef Shalom couldn’t do enough for us.
Common Plea was hard at work inside of the huge kitchen, preparing beautiful appetizers and awesome entrees. Eli and his groomsmen arrived first. We hid them in the temple until Ashley and her bridal party arrived. We all held our breath and peeked out the window as they took their first look. It was as if time stood still for a few magic moments.
Rabbi Stein soon arrived and the time of the ceremony grew closer. Bill Strayne and his band, In Transit, began tuning up in Freehof Hall. Gorgeous vases of flowers appeared on the dinner tables. It was time!
We could tell you more but the photography will say it all! Thank you so much to Michael Willwho captured the day so beautifully! Enjoy!
We have to admit- 2016 was a remarkable year for us! Many beautiful brides and grooms honored us by choosing Katherine’s Daughter Events for their amazing day! God is good and we are grateful for the wonderful families that we were graced with this year.
Here’s some of the awesome pics from this fabulous year!
If you are being married in southwestern Pennsylvania, the chances are you are having a cookie table! In my years of experience with weddings large and small, I would have to say almost all of my brides choose this fantastic dessert option!
When I think back as long as I can, I remember my own Greek American family offering cookies at every wedding. Plates of baklava, kourambiethes, koulourakia, halva and other specialities were usually in the center of every table, offering guests a chance for something sweet with their coffee.
These days, family members bake cookies and oftentimes the bridal couple will supplement with more from a local bakery. Brides often mix family cookies with cupcakes, regular and mini size, and some even place a small wedding cake in the middle of their table.
In my experience, most brides wish to have their cookie table available as soon as guests walk into the reception. The consequence of waiting until later is too many cookies are left over with no place to go! Guests will load containers but even this will not always help. If you are having a large cookie table consider allowing your guests access to it from the moment they arrive at the reception.
Through a recent poll on social media, I asked my friends and family what their favorite cookie table cookie was. The answers were mouth watering! Lady locks, the classic chocolate chip, kolackys, buckeyes, peanut butter blossoms, pizzelles, pecan tassies, lemon squares, chocolate truffles, nut rolls, mini cheesecakes are among the favorites. If I had to choose just one, I couldn’t!
Here’s some helpful hints if you’d like to have a Pittsburgh cookie table:
You don’t have to organize it but it helps if you do. Have a family member ask and keep track of who is baking what. Think of your number of guests and multiply that number by 6. For example, 100 guests x 6 cookies each equals 600 cookies. Divide by 12 and that is 50 dozen cookies. It doesn’t take many family members to bake 50 dozen!
How will you serve the cookies? Hotels usually offer a service where they will tray and serve them for you. There may be a small charge for this. If you purchase plastic cookie trays (with lids) from a restaurant supply place (such as Gordon Foods), you can pre arrange your cookie trays and just take the lids off at serving time. At our barn weddings, we often see individual glass serving dishes and cupcake stands with cookies arranged beautifully. My assistants and I are happy to arrange your cookie table for you.
What will guests take their cookies home in? Options are bags (stamped with the date of the wedding or plain), Chinese take out boxes, or recyclable containers made of light cardboard.
If you don’t wish to have your family members bake for you but want a cookie table, there are many bakeries that would love to help you. Best Sweet Bites or Grandview Bakery are two of our favorites!
Highlight your cookie table with lit mason jars, small led lights, or other pretty embellishments to draw attention to it. If you’re having a rustic wedding, use wooden crates or other props to elevate your platters.
With a little bit of planning, your Pittsburgh cookie table can be one that guests remember for a long time!
As I have said, God has blessed me with beautiful wedding couples this season and Nichole and Arnold are no exception! I met them through a wonderful old friend and Michelene and I worked with them for months leading up to their wedding. It was worth it! Nichole had a vision- she loved the classic book “The Secret Garden” and set out to create her wedding around this theme. She succeeded! Her wedding was at Stonebridge Nursery in Economy and the setting was just perfect to fulfill Nichole and Arnold’s dreams!
I loved the individually created centerpieces, vintage decor, and stunning colors of this wedding. Many components were a part of this day, one of which was a native dance! Arnold grew up dancing in the Bolivian folkloric dance group Alma Boliviana, which means Bolivian Soul. Nichole wanted her family and friends to fall in love with Arnold’s beautiful culture, just as she had.
I asked Nichole and Arnold to share some thoughts with me about their wedding. Here is what she said. “I loved how everything had a purpose and was a part of the story. The flowers, the colors, the decor, the secret garden theme. All of it was intentional. There is a line in Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden that goes,
“Of course there must be lots of Magic in the world,” he said wisely one day, “but people don’t know what it is like or how to make it. Perhaps the beginning is just to say nice things are going to happen until you make them happen. I am going to try and experiment.”
Our day was full of magic. We worked so hard beforehand, and on the day I just let go and let it all happen. I put my phone away, let my incredible bridesmaids help me with my dress, and 13 foot veil (that was made for me in Bolivia!!) and just allowed myself to get lost in the beauty of the day. It really couldn’t have gone more perfectly. Even the rain came on cue, not a minute after Arnold and were announced and made it to the dance floor under the tent. As it poured with all its might while Arnold explained the table dedicated to the fallen soldier, some remarked that the tears of fallen comrades were pouring down from heaven. There were so many little ways that God’s presence was with us throughout the day. Stonebridge Farm has a dreamlike quality about it that makes you get lost in the beauty of it all. The day after the wedding, when we had finished cleaning everything up at Stonebridge, Arnold and I walked hand in hand through the garden one last time, our hearts so full of love and happy memories that we thought they might burst.
Arnold said, ” When I saw her walking down the aisle toward me, I had such a wave of emotion. I’m not one to cry, but I could barely hold back the tears when I saw the most beautiful angel coming towards me. I knew without a doubt that I had made the right choice and that this was just the beginning. It felt surreal and so real all at the same time.”
I can’t wait to share these pictures with you! Nichole and Arnold, thank you from the bottom of our hearts for including us in your wedding day!!
Day of Wedding Coordination: Katherine’s Daughter Events
This season’s bridal couples have touched a special place in my heart and Tara and Jeff are no exception. Tara and I worked together for almost a year on her wedding day. She had beautiful ideas and did a fantastic job planning her details. I loved the blue with white polka dot dresses for the bridesmaids, paired with red shoes! Her gown was from David’s Bridal and it was stunning! Other gorgeous details such as mini sunflower bouquets and rustic decor wedding cake made this day something to remember for a long time.
The reception was at the South Fayette Fire Hall and boy, was I impressed! They did a fabulous job with the food, bar, and of course, the famous Pittsburgh cookie table. The icing on the cake? It was the entire bridal party doing a group shot on the big yellow fire truck!
Many thanks to Sasha Danielle for these amazing photos. The other wedding vendors are listed below, after the final picture. Tara and Jeff, thank you from the bottom of my heart for including me in your wedding day!
With so many venue options to choose from these days, a bride and groom can really have some tough choices to make. Barn, hotel, conservancy, outdoor- there are lots of decisions to make just on location alone.
Many years ago I went to a wedding on the Gateway Clipper. I remember it being magical because as the sun went down, the city of Pittsburgh lit up. It was beautiful to sit on the top level and watch the sparkly city lights go by. The water was soothing; it was a night to remember.
I recently visited the Gateway Clipper to see what’s sailing. The good news is there are lots of great wedding packages to choose from. If you’re thinking you want something different, consider calling Steve Anderson at (412) 355-7980 for more details. Visit the Gateway Clipper websiteand see the options. You and your fiance can choose to be married on the top deck as the ship sails through the Three Rivers of Pittsburgh!
This is an option worth checking out. ClickHERE to be sent to the Gateway Clipper’s Wedding page and Happy Sailing!
When I received the first early copies of my book, I gave one to the mother of my granddaughter Penelope. Jessica is my friend and the partner of my son John. She is the manager of the Habitat for Humanity Restore in Allegheny Valley, PA.
As luck would have it, Jessica, Penelope and I went on a little field trip yesterday. We visited another Restore and stopped for lunch afterwards. We talked about how to market my book and Jess offered to do a review for me. I took her up on the offer!
So here, without any further ado, are Jessica’s thoughts on “Ordinary IS Extraordinary.”
When I read Ordinary IS Extraordinary I was nursing my infant daughter, Penelope, and read most of it out loud to her.
We cried at different parts for different reasons…
I had tears in my eyes when Joanne shared her journey of rediscovering her faith and loving herself. I smiled as I pictured her as an awkward young person. Looking down at Penny while we read, I couldn’t help wondering if she would face some of the same challenges in life.
I was inspired by Joanne’s discoveries of growth, as the lens she saw both the world and herself through, changed as her experiences colored the glass.
When I closed the book..I found myself savoring so much of her insights, that I let out a huge breath I didn’t know I was holding…and with it a burden I didn’t realize was there. As for Penelope, she always loves hearing her Nana’s adventures, even when she’s hungry.
Grab a cup of Jo, your favorite snack, and devote a morning or afternoon to walking in her footsteps. I know you’ll enjoy the landscape. The writing is honest and you’ll feel as though she is sitting across from you on that lounge chair, having a coffee, sharing in your delight along the way.
From Jessica Levine
Jessica, thank you so much for your beautiful words!
Click HERE to order my book on Amazon. There’s a Kindle version too! You may want to order two books ;), one for you and one for a friend.
When you read Ordinary IS Extraordinary, I’d love to hear from you! Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts. If you are a blogger that writes on spirituality, I would be happy to send you a book to review.
“She is free in her wildness, she is a wanderess, a drop of free water. She knows nothing of borders and cares nothing for rules or customs. ‘Time’ for her isn’t something to fight against. Her life flows clean, with passion, like fresh water.”
― Roman Payne
If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you know that I believe there are no coincidences. A friend of mine likes to say, “Is it Odd or is it God?”. Spiritual paths and journeys can cross with others at any time. I’ve been blessed to have this happen to me many times.
One of those times was last fall when I was contacted by a friend of mine to discuss a business idea. Tracy and I met for coffee and we had a great talk. During that time I mentioned my blog and spiritual journey, and my quest for putting together a small inspirational book. “Ordinary into Extraordinary” was the working title of the project. Tracy told me she wanted to host an empowerment weekend for women in the spring of 2016. “Can you finish your book by then?” she said.
Always being up for a challenge (and a good kick in the butt), I said yes. At first I was editing my favorite blog posts for a compilation book. This was the initial idea but by month two I was bored, restless, and trying to decide what to do. Enter my fellow blogging goddess, Sunday’s Child. A long talk from west to east coast, lots of encouragement, and a brave idea emerged. Begin a new book, write like there’s no tomorrow, and finish it by the retreat.
As if that wasn’t enough God power for me, enter Karen of BetterBe Creative. I met her just a couple of years ago and she is another goddess. A graphic designer with a beautiful, comforting personality, she has agreed to take on the task of designing my first cover. And guess what? She knows a publisher who can print the book. I’m self-publishing so figuring everything out is up to me and Karen. (PS. this book will eventually be available through the web for purchase- YAY!)
A few nights ago I had the honor and pleasure of meeting the other speakers. Joy Bufalini is missing from this picture (she had to leave first) but trust me, she is as awesome as rest of us.
After we each introduced ourselves and told our little story, I was infused with gratitude for what God has brought together. Tracy and Mary have organized this retreat at the beautiful Antiochian Village in the quaint town of Ligonier, Pennsylvania.The dates are April 1-2. We are motivated entrepreneurs and have all been through the school of hard knocks. We will share our stories with you at the retreat and tell you how we have taken our lemon filled lives and made lemonade.
I realized at our little dinner that this will be a retreat about self love and self care. We the speakers will encourage you to lift yourself up and move beyond the blocks that may be holding you back. The friendship and love we will show you will be with you for a long time. You will be changed by this weekend I promise you.
Click HERE for the registration link to the Women’s Empowerment Weekend.
Check out the agenda!
I will be staying Friday and Saturday. Come and join us and be transformed.