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 ...or Book of Levity, Overindulgence and Galas

From time to time we have thoughts that we feel compelled to convey. They may be sporadic or come at you fast and furious in predetermined intervals. Either way, we wish you would think of our rants and philosophies to be a heartfelt shares, to be considered at your discretion.

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Prenuptial Agreement - Building a future with peace of mind

Posted on May 19, 2017 at 1:10 PM Comments comments (1)

Most people understand the reason for insurance. We spend huge chunks of income each year on life, fire, and medical insurance, and newer types of insurance such as long term care. Consider viewing a Prenuptial (or Premarital) Agreement in the same way, as a kind of insurance policy. Why?


Parties facing divorce who have such agreements in place and abide by them, have helped to insure themselves against conflict, sky-high legal bills, and dissipation of valuable assets.

Who might need a Prenuptial Agreement (PNA)? Interestingly, it is not just people with large incomes or those who own several properties. If either of the parties about to be married have been married before, or if either of the parties have children by other relationships, a PNA is a necessity. If one of the parties owns a home, business, or a financial portfolio – in other words, if that person's monetary resources considerably outweigh those of the other, a PNA is essential.




Once a couple has decided that they would like to make their relationship permanent, a discussion of finances becomes crucial. This is often difficult. Money is usually a sensitive issue in relationships and many times partners have divergent views. 

Clear understanding and agreement should be reached on the management and disposition of all real estate, income streams, deferred benefits, and all other assets whether separate or community. There are several key points to keep in mind. First of all, the agreement must be deliberately conceived and completely voluntary. Full disclosure of all assets and debits is required. It must be drawn up to give each party adequate time to carefully review. It is important that the agreement be just and fair-minded in order to insure that it will not be overturned in a legal challenge. To be safe, it is a good idea to video record the execution ceremony as evidence that it was signed voluntarily by competent parties. At The Law Collaborative we help mediate, negotiate, and review Prenuptial Agreements and Post-Nuptial Agreements. Call us for more information or visit the relationship planning section of our website.


Contributor - Ty Supancic, Esq.

The Law Collaborative, APC



Ask this from your venue coordinator or forever hold your peace

Posted on February 2, 2017 at 12:00 AM Comments comments (1)

There are 101 questions that could and should be asked during a venue consultation. The queries will be based on the type, location and scope of the setting you have selected. Do not hesitate to get the answers you need, or you might pay the price. The following is an update form a previous blog post.


We have chosen a sampling of 33+3 things to ask


● How do I reserve my wedding/wedding and reception at this location?

● Do you offer all-inclusive packages?

● Can the packages be customized to my needs?

● Can I confirm a Booking Agreement without menu selections?

● We have guests from out of town, when is the earliest we can schedule a ceremony rehearsal?

● Can our special pet participate in the wedding?

● Could I receive a breakdown (Itemized list) of all the costs?

● Is there any flexibility in the pricing?

● How much money is required for the deposit?

● What forms of payment do you accept?

● What if we need to postpone the wedding?




● When can we make our menu selections?

● What is the deadline for making the menu selection?

● Can we offer our guests a choice for their entrée?

● We have guests that are vegetarian, gluten free, as well as a severe peanut allergy – can you accommodate?

● Do you have Children’s Meals?

● Do you offer Vendor Meals?

● Can we take the leftovers home?

● Please explain the Bar charges and the various options available.

● Can we bring in our own Alcoholic Beverages?

● When is the final count due?

● The food selections are very important to us, can we taste our menu before the event?




● What is overage charge for “unexpected guests”?

● Do you have any photography restrictions?

● Do work with preferred vendors, such as officiants to perform ceremonies?

● What specialty vendors can I use?

● What time can the vendors come in to set up?

● Does the venue have restrictions on décor?

● Are tables and chairs an additional fee?

● Do you have a map to give our guests?

● Do you know of any hotels close-by?

● What can I expect in the planning timeline?

● Who will I be working with?


Outdoor Venues

● What is the contingency plan in case of inclement weather?

● Are there any sound restrictions?

● Is there plenty of lighting and can it be modified to fit the mood of the event?


Once the location is secured you can breathe a sigh of relief, then move on to handle the countless other things you will have to tackle. But it is all about checking them of the list one at a time.


Contributor - Josef Schein aka DJ Opus Unum

 

Dream a Little Dream of Cake

Posted on March 27, 2016 at 1:00 AM Comments comments (0)

According to those in the know, the Most Popular Wedding Cake Flavors 2016 will be Red Velvet, Chocolate, White Chocolate with Raspberry, Lemon, Vanilla, Coconut and Lime, Pink Champagne and finally Carrot. This however should not discourage you from creating your own one of a kind Wedding Cake. The cake artists are out in force to help you achieve just that.


Here are some Wedding Cake options that will make a lasting impression on your guests.


Cake Exterior - Your guests can begin to eat with their eyes. The overall design of the cake can spark your family and friends imagination and give them an additional peek into your desires, in cake.

You might consider slathering the cake in any of a variety of frostings, Fondant, Butter Creams. Cooked Frosting, Marzipan or Royal Icing.


Cake Interior - When finally treating the wedding party to the Pièce de résistance, create a moment that will not soon leave their memories, in a good way. A lingering delight to the taste buds can be created with a variety of filling, such as Jams, Butter Creams, Chocolate, Vanilla and various Fruits.

You can even create your own filling, or choose different fillings for each tier of your wedding cake.


Creativity - Begin with your most crazy ideas and narrow the options as you get closer to 'decision day'. Consider using Edible Flowers, Off-Season Colors and Non-Traditional Decorations to personalize and harmonize with your wedding theme.


If you imagined it, thought it or dreamt it, it is likely your baker can recreate it.


Contributor - Josef Schein aka DJ Opus Unum



 

What questions to ask your wedding officiant to get it right the first time

Posted on March 24, 2016 at 2:35 PM Comments comments (0)

It is just as important to have the right officiant for your wedding as is any other aspect. Do not doubt that. Ask your wedding officiant all that will insure that they’re a perfect match for you and your notion for your wedding ceremony.

 

This is a sampling of questions and the reasoning for asking

 

Practical - Answers to these questions will insure that your marriage will be binding, ceremony will be handled professionally and you won’t have unhappy surprises.

 

Are you registered to perform weddings in my location?

Countries, State and Counties often have very distinct rules and regulations governing the state of matrimony. Some locations regulations are right down lax. The possibility to become an Officiant or an Ordained Minister online requires additional research to insure that the credentials are recognized at any particular jurisdiction.

 

How long have you officiated weddings and what sort of training have you had?

The extent of the officiant’s experience will directly correlate to their ability to perform a galant ceremony, give off an air of respectability to the festivities and file the paperwork in a timely manner.

 

About how many weddings you do per year?

Practice makes perfect and perfection is highly desirable during your ceremony. Staying up to date with modern traditions and keeping a fresh tone to the presentation is highly favored.

 

Have you previously officiated a ceremony at ‘my location’?

While not a deal breaker, having officiated at your particular venue might assist the officiant in incorporating the environment into the ceremony. In some cases, being familiar with the location and knowing the staff might help in your guests overall experience. Bonus: No chance they will get lost on the way.

 

What are your rules as to photography?

Is your officiant camera shy? Could they be easily distracted by other professionals scurrying about? Is Godliness above even your once in a lifetime event and your right to have it documented?

 

Is premarital counseling required?

This s a very personal matter that must be discussed with your Minister, Rabbi or other trusted figure.

 

When do you suggest we sign our marriage license?

Determining your preference to sign before or after your ceremony might rely heavily on your wedding day schedule. Having the officiant coordinate with your wedding planner will insure your schedule runs smoothly.

 

What are the fees charged?

You need to maintain a budget.

 

Important note: Consider making certain that the officiant is present at the ceremony rehearsal.

 

 

 Personal - Answers to these questions can help create a more intimate experience for you and your guests. By creating a bond with your officiant the celebration will feel more of a family affair than a business transaction.

 

What’s your favorite part of every wedding ceremony?

Get personal with your wedding officiant and find out what lights them up. Knowing which part(s) of the wedding ceremony is their fave gives you an idea of how your wedding officiant thinks, feels, and will personalize your ceremony.

 

How will you make our ceremony special?

It’s important to find out whether your wedding officiant personalise their own ceremonial templates or if they write ceremonies for each couple. After all, no two couples are alike and neither should any two wedding ceremonies.

 

Why did you become a wedding officiant?

You learn a lot when you ask to find out more about someone’s stories. You discover passions and the lovely layers that makes choosing your wedding officiant easy and fun. You want to have a connection with the person that’s going to pronounce you married.

 

Enjoy the connection you make with your vendors, they will forever be part of the story you tell.


Contributor - Josef Schein aka DJ Opus Unum



Wedding Day Emergency Kit

Posted on March 21, 2016 at 4:40 PM Comments comments (0)

You have been dreaming of this day since you were a little girl and today is here.
You may expect everything to go accoring to plan, but it would be foolish to not be ready for the unexpected.

The following is a a checklist of things every bride should have on hand on her wedding day.


1. Grooming 

  • Hand lotion, Wet wipes
  • Curling iron, Hot rollers
  • Tissues
  • Hairdryer
  • Cotton balls, Cotton swabs
  • Brush, Comb
  • Makeup
  • Hairspray, Hair gel
  • Makeup remover
  • Bobby pins, Hair elastics, Barrettes
  • Nail polish in shade worn
  • Headband / clips for your hair back while applying makeup
  • Nail polish remover
  • Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Floss
  • Nail file
  • Lint brush
  • Tweezers
  • Baby powder
  • Small grooming scissors
  • Deodorant
  • Small hand towel
  • Perfume


2. Attire 

  • "Throwaway" garter
  • Safety pins, Sewing kit with thread to match bride's and attendants' dresses, Scissors and extra buttons
  • Clear nail polish for runs in pantyhose / extra pantyhose
  • Masking tape or sewing tape (last-minute ripped hems)
  • Extra earring backs
  • Club soda or other stain removal solutions
  • Flat shoes for the reception
  • Iron


3. Health/Medical 

  • Antacid
  • Bandages
  • Antihistamine, Cold remedy, Any prescription medications
  • Upset stomach remedy
  • Aspirin, Pain relievers
  • Feminine hygiene products (tampons, panty liners, etc.)


4. Miscellaneous 

  • Extra copies of directions to reception
  • Small flashlight
  • Breath mints
  • Folding utility knife
  • Cell phone and home phone numbers of all wedding participants
  • Duct tape
  • Contact information for all vendors
  • Cooler with juice,sodas, and bottled water and snacks
  • Champagne, Glasses

If think of anything else that might set your mind at ease, then by all means add it to the Emergency Kit. In many respects this is about giving you a sense of readiness, more than it is about actually putting out fires.


Contributor - Josef Schein aka DJ Opus Unum


Set a budget and don't budge from it

Posted on October 5, 2015 at 7:40 PM Comments comments (0)

If you have limited amount of funds, than you more than likely will not be spending the average of $26,444 (according to costofwedding.com) on your wedding plans. You will have to prepare a budget based on your particular situation and then stick to it.


Here are a few hurdles, obstacles and things to watch out for to not blow the budget


1. Proper budget outline

Whether you have a fixed amount of money to spend or whether you will be basing the budget on the perperson cost in your area, do not spend a nickel prior to having the budget set. Not doing so will only create havoc and leave you with a sense of regret when you run out of money too soon, or start cutting corners on the things that really mattered to you.


2. Time is money

May it be for the venue, the tables and linens or the hiring of your entertainment, remember to calculate your optimum time between a down payment or deposit and the final payments. Doing so could make the difference of making your wedding choices much more affordable, alleviate quite a bit of stress and allowed you to manage the budget much more efficiently.


3. All the small things

Especially for DIYers, forgetting to calculate the cups, glasses and napkins can put you over your budget. When planning your purchasing list include all things, even if they seem ridiculous at the time, because it is always easier to cross out an item on the list then running to the store at the last minute.


4. Do not perish the thought

When selecting a location, remember that you are working on a budget and you should never forget it. Devote plenty of time for research, because eventually you will find a middle ground between the inexpensive venue with bad location or poor décor and the really expensive venue with amazing vistas and grand décor.


5. Love is for suckers

Falling in love with the first vendor you meet, should it be a Photographers, Florists, Entertainer and alike, could turn out to be a costly mistake. When you find the quality of work that you’d like to have at your wedding, begin the search for a price you can afford. While you might want to place value over cost, it ultimately has to fit within your budget. Definitely do not pay more for the brand or name of the vendor(s).


6. Signed, Sealed, Delivered

Communication is a powerful tool that you should employ to have things done your way on your special day. Have everything requested from vendors written down and verify their understanding with signatures on every item. This is best used to get refunds and credit for items omitted, or alterations made in contrast to the agreement.


7. DIY/WTF

Do you want to and can you afford to spent hours coming up with a design, trying and failing, coming up with a new design and going back and forth to various stores for supplies...just so you can say that you did it yourself? Sometimes it is just more affordable to research stationery companies and comparing the prices of the printed invites versus all of the materials you would have bought separately. This applies to all DIY projects you might have in mind.


8. A gift in time

By all means feel free to give worthwhile and meaningful gifts to your parents and bridal party. But for the love of the budget shop early and shop often and hit every sale from here to the next city. Maybe secondhand jewelry for the ladies and watches for the gents, from an antique store, would offer more meaning at a lower cost.


9. Cushin for the pushin

Allow a certain percentage of the budget for those last minute impulse decisions. You might consider that you will have some “unforeseeable”expenses, or you will find your budget blown. Do not push any expense through if you are at your budget limit.


You will enjoy your wedding much more knowing that you will not start your life together in debt.


Contributor - Josef Schein aka DJ Opus Unum



It's my Dinner Party...and I'll cry if it sucks

Posted on September 28, 2015 at 3:30 PM Comments comments (0)

What you should know about throwing a succesful Dinner Party


Keep the theme simple

Dinner will be the Pièce de résistance but the theme will dictate the mood, the number of guests and even the guest list. Know that a more elaborate theme will cost you more and will take more of your time. So think before you theme.


Guest List and Invitations

You cannot be the only thing your guests have in common. Give thought to the ratio of lifelong friends, collegues and family members that you might want to have in attendance. To have the perfect mix of personalities attend, send the invitations no later than 3 weeks in advance with a strict RSVP deadline. Use the invitation to begin setting the mood of your event.


Drink and Food Menu

Home made is the ticket. No one goes to a dinner party to enjoy the best that can be delivered. So plan it out well in advance taking in consideration your buget, your timeline, your theme and your guests dietary needs and restrictions. Have a variety of drinks from which guest can chose or chose to experiment, throw a surprise homemade cocktail in the mix. If that is beyond you, stick to what you know. Keep the dessert small and accompany it with coffee or after dinner aperitive.


Music

Since the empasis is on the dinner and the company you keep, music must be there only to cater to that ambiance. Select a variety of artists from you chosen music genre, create an ample playlist and don't give it another thought. Maybe an online music service can help you with that.


Mood, Decor and the Table Setting

Again, keep it simple. Either tastefully complement the theme of the evening or avoid a theme completely and go for classy. Low lighting will be more forgiving if you forgot to vacuum at the last minute and fresh flowers will lend aroma and a simple understated beauty to the decor. The table setting must be mostly functional yet allow you be creative and even playful.

 

Contributor - Josef Schein aka DJ Opus Unum



 

Ideal 7 in Wedding Entertainment

Posted on September 21, 2015 at 11:55 AM Comments comments (0)

So aside from the cool DJ, here are 7 other creative and unusual ways to entertain yourself and your guests at your wedding.

 

1. Wine Tastings - Would you like some wine with that

Perfect for a wine themed wedding or just a great way for guests to entertain themselves and now have an excellent icebreaker for guests who don't know each other

 

2. Pen and Ink Artist - Make sure you get my good sides

Sit, stand or just pose for a caricature, a portrait or a mural. Have an artist immortalize your celebration on a one of a kind canvas masterpiece, or in several more personal impromptu works of art.

 

3. Dance Instructors - Don't trip when the lights go down, fantastic!

A little of guidance to help you pull of your first dance might give you the confidence you need. It might impress your guests, as well as make it more photographically interesting.

 

4. Circus Acts - Ixnay the animals

From stilt walkers to fire breathers, from contortionists to jugglers, these are performances that entertain, thrill and bring out the child in all of us. Best suited for an outdoor event with a matching theme.

 

5. Carnival Rides - Get a cheap thrill

Remember the Tobogan and the Ferris Wheel? Well, they travel. Recreate this magical ambiance for your event and add a few booths with games of chance, such as Pop a Ballon or Put a Ring on the Duckie.

 

6. Performance Wait Staff - The lunatics are taking over the asylum

One minute they are serving you champagne with a towel on their arm, the next minute they break out in song or creating situational audience participation routines.

 

7. Casino Night - Luck be a lady tonight

Think of a roulette table in a James Bond film. If that is class, than this is for you. May it be Blackjack or Craps, few well placed casino tables can make the night that much more interesting.


Contributor - Josef Schein aka DJ Opus Unum



What is a DJ and who is an MC?

Posted on March 27, 2015 at 3:05 PM Comments comments (0)

Lets start by breaking down the acronyms...DJ is a shortening of the title Disc Jockey, while MC is an abbreviation of Master of Ceremony.


The title of Disc Jockey is used to describe an artist that plays music of a prerecorded format to an audience. While there are various types of DJs, such as Radio DJ or Club DJs, this summary relates exclusively to the Event DJ.


A qualified event DJ meets with clients compiles music selection and creates playlists for use at functions for which he has been contracted. During weddings, he would play portions of preselected music for the ceremony, play background music for the cocktail and dinner hours and later maintain the guests entertained on the dance floor. At corporate functions a DJ may play music for the mixer portion of the day and later act as a sound engineer to maintain sound levels during presentations. He must be proficient with the use of his sound equipment and be adept at interactions with members of his audience.


Event DJs must be competent in the art of mixing music for dancing. They must maintain an ever growing library of music and must be knowledgeable about current hits and trends.


A Master of Ceremonies is the official host of a staged event or similar performance.


A Master of Ceremony usually presents performers, speaks to the audience, entertains people with shear personality or with jokes or anecdotes and generally keeps the event moving. He may sometimes act as auctioneer during fundraisers or a game show host during Company Picnics.


During any event, the responsibility of the Master of Ceremony is to keep the agenda flowing smoothly by: Capturing and maintaining the attention of the guests and when necessary directing their attention on to the most important proceedings the event organizers have chosen to include.


Keeping the event attendees informed so at any given moment they know what is happening. Guiding event participants, such as Bride and Groom, Speakers and Toast Makers, so they know what they are supposed to do to participate in a timely manner


Certain other skills are incorporated into any production, such as Delivering Applause Cues, Presenting Introductions and Microphone technique, Posture and Stance, Voice Inflection, Staging (or otherwise known as “where to stand”}


Be looking for our upcoming Blog Post “traits of a confident MC”


Contributor - Josef Schein aka DJ Opus Unum



 

Values You Should Expect From An Efficient Event Organizer

Posted on March 16, 2015 at 9:30 AM Comments comments (0)

If you have ever envisioned organizing a celebration on a large scale, you know that there are multitudes of stresses that can be expected. Consider all the vendors you need to contact, such as venues, caterers and entertainment. In addition to taking into account the costs and the time involved, you would think yourself fortunate to manage to have a good time yourself.


To this end hire a professional event organizer, to assure your event runs smoothly in addition to supporting you in achieving your vision for your event.


The following are some of the values you should expect from an efficient Event Organizer


• Organizers will oversee all major arrangements and minor details of the event.

• They will help clients avoid common pitfalls and deal with predicament as they might arise.

• Efficient organizers have contingency plans in place in case of emergency and might have at their disposal a large network of emergency contacts.

• They will research and reserve the correct venue with plenty of advance

• The most accomplished have connections with suppliers and might be able to facilitate the best value for the money. They are in a better position to negotiate discounts from vendors with which they have worked in the past.

• They will maintain the budget within the specified parameters.

• They are more likely to be in tune to the latest trends in the industry. The might be able to introduce you to new ideas and possibilities as options for your event.


The final decisions are always yours. So do your research, ask plenty of questions and make value the deciding factor, not money.


Contributor - Josef Schein aka DJ Opus Unum




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