Browsing articles tagged with " Celebrations Party Rentals"

Suzanne & Chris ~ Married! {Part 2}

Dec 13, 2017   //   by Lora   //   Weddings  //  No Comments

As I mentioned in { Part 1} Suzanne and Chris was theee best couple with such a big heart and lots of energy!!  Gold Hill Gardens in Newcastle, CA offered the light-hearted elements they were looking for in their Special Day.  After the ceremony, during the cocktail hour, guests could stroll the property, enjoy a beverage, play ping-pong, cornhold, giant chess or jenga, (all these lawn games are permanent features of the venue!)  The newlyweds enjoyed a bit of photo time, along with some dee-licious grilled cheese sandwiches created by Jackson Catering & Events!




The color palette Suzanne wished for was romantic, natural, soft and “simply elegant.”  Working with the common thread of gray as the underlay, Katie with Ambience Floral Design, designed a free flowing centerpiece of greens, whites and varying heights of candles.  Very pretty.

Looking for something a bit out of the ordinary, Chris and Suzanne decided three different food stations would be fun for their guests – Loaded Mac and Cheese station, unique salads served with corn bread, and the street tacos were OUTSTANDING and a huge hit! Jackson Catering & Events knocked it out of the park!!

Two elements Chris desired was a full bar (check), and incorporating his favorite Land Park neighborhood Marie’s Donuts, into the dessert.  Looks so good, right?  I suggested an iced bucket of plain and chocolate milk to be served alongside (YES!), and displayed some donuts in the familiar pink box for a bit of whimsy.  At the end of the evening, I believe there might have been 4 donuts remaining!  After a few toasts, the dance party started with Mike Regan of Mr. DJ Event Services at the helm.

What a beautiful, fun-filled and family-centric wedding this was.  I loved every minute of planning and executing.  Thank you Chris and Suzanne for allowing me to work with you on creating probably Thee Best Day Ever!!  See you in the neighborhood… maybe at Marie’s Donuts!

Venue:  Gold Hill Gardens, Newcastle, CA

Photographer:  Beth of True Love Photo (you’re so freekin’ good, Queen B!)

Videographer: Premier Video

Florist:  Katie w/Ambience Floral Design

Catering:  Jackson Catering & Events

Dessert:  Marie’s Donuts

Rentals:  Celebration’s Party Rentals

DJ/MC/Lighting:  Mike Regan w/Mr. DJ Event Services

Calligraphy donut sign:  The Calligraphy Girl

Kelly & Lee ~ Married! {Part 2}

Aug 12, 2017   //   by Lora   //   Weddings  //  No Comments

Kelly and Lee had a beautiful, loving  wedding ceremony held at Gold Hill Gardens (be sure to go back to {Part 1} to catch up).  Following that ceremony-in-the-round, some romantic photos were taken on the gorgeous grounds of this foothill property, and then the newlyweds joined their guests who were noshing, enjoying the bar, playing lawn games and soaking up the ambience.  Thankfully the rains stopped the day before, but the clear top tent we had previously erected, provided a lovely setting for the dinner reception.

Kelly asked Ambience Floral Design for tulips – lots of tulips – in every color of the rainbow – it was a spring wedding after all, so this floral choice was perfect!  We set up three long rows of wood farm tables, laid out a lacey runner and lined the table with different vases of fun, bright flowers.  The “starburst” silver charger plate added a bit of bling to the rustic wood tables.  Kelly and Lee decided on holding a Family Style Dinner to be served to their 60 guests – Jackson Catering started the meal off with delicious shrimp cocktails, and for fun, at each of the following two courses, I had Kelly and Lee move to a reserved pair of seats at each of the three tables; that way they could enjoy conversation and mingling with most of their guests during dinner.



The lovely wedding cake created by Devine Desserts was positioned in the gazebo on the knoll.  Notice the clever hanging of the tulips from around the gazebo framing!  Love it!  After toasts and desserts and conversation by candlelight, Steve with Function 45 amped up the music, and had the guests dancing (and singing).  What a fun evening!

Thank you to all the vendors who contributed to Kelly and Lee’s wonderful wedding day, and thank you, to my sweet clients for the opportunity to plan and coordinate your special day.  Many happy years together!!

Photo Credit:  Sam w/The Red Sneaker Studio

Venue:  Gold Hill Gardens

Florist:  Katie w/Ambience Floral Design

Catering:  Jackson Catering & Events

Cake:  Devine Desserts by Aguirre

Rentals: Celebrations Party Rentals (tent, furniture, china/chargers, linens)

DJ/MC and photo booth:  Steve with Function 45 Event Entertainment

Kelly & Lee ~ {Married} ! {Part 1}

Aug 10, 2017   //   by Lora   //   Weddings  //  4 Comments

When Kelly and Lee came to me several months before their wedding date, they told me right off, that they wanted something “different” not “run of the mill.” Well, I LOVE THAT, and I ADORE this couple!! They had previously selected the gorgeous Gold Hill Gardens in Newcastle CA, and had set a date of April 23rd… hummm, my discussion following was about having a back-up plan – springtime in the foothills, after all!  Gold Hill Gardens is a fantastic all outdoor venue with gardens and expansive views, and luckily they can accommodate a tent structure, so Kelly and Lee were in agreement, and said if they had to have a tent, then they would love the clear top tent that I suggested would be perfect.

And funny… it rained all during the week, with a promise that it might clear up on wedding day. Well, we decided to be safe, and had the tent installed – it was stunning!  But it did NOT rain on their day.

Because this couple was an established pair, with a blending of children, they tossed aside tradition, and chose to have a pre-social for their guests, and Kelly would wear a fun cocktail dress (she looked fabulous). Their first look was light-hearted and informal and they got to enjoy their guests longer, with champagne in hand, and lawn games.  Kelly’s love for multi-colored tulips was carried forth in many places, starting with a fun, full and flirty bouquet.   After a bit of mingling,  I sent her up to the Inn to change into her stunning gown to prepare for the wedding.

To be “different,” I designed the ceremony in the round. Having their family and friends encircle them appealed to Kelly and Lee’s sensibilities, and at each opening in the cross section, I positioned one of their children. The views from this top ceremony option at Gold Hill Gardens are fantastic – and there are no obstructions!


Following the ceremony, Kelly and Lee wandered off for some romantic photos, starting with the new blended family. Guests continued to mingle, play lawn games and enjoy passed appetizers.

Be sure to come back for Part 2 to see more on this wedding. It was a beauty.

Thanks to Sam w/The Red Sneaker Studio for capturing all the pretties and details. Also Katie w/Ambience Floral Design, Celebrations Party Rentals and Jackson Catering & Events.

Happy 1st Anniversary ~ Becca & Matt!

Jul 22, 2017   //   by Lora   //   Weddings  //  No Comments

To sweet Becca and debonair Matt… Happy First Wedding Anniversary!!!  Your special day, held in the foothills outside of Sacramento, where the JULY HEAT was very evident, was such a wonderful, family and friend bonding day.  Becca chose soft pink tones which helped to make us all feel cooler (well, probably not, it did reach around 104 degrees that day).  Holding the traditional nuptial mass in an air conditioned Catholic church was VERY helpful, and Gold Hill Garden’s plentiful market umbrellas was definitely needed. The cattle in the nearby pasture sure enjoyed that cold watermelon slice!  But in spite of the heat, all was forgotten just watching your happiness and adoration for each other, and thankfully the sun set, the temps cooled down and thus the dance floor heated up – once again.  It was a great wedding! And I know you’ve had a wonderful first year of marriage {smile}… congrats on the new addition coming this fall!

Photo credit to Teresa K Photography , the very pretty flowers by Katie of Ambience Floral, and the dancing frenzy brought to you by Steve Schon of Function 45.

Becca & Matt ~ Married! {Part 2} The Party and Details

Oct 19, 2016   //   by Lora   //   Weddings  //  No Comments

After a perfect traditional Catholic Nuptial Mass at St. Joseph’s, Auburn, CA, the fun and frivolity began just a few miles away at Gold Hill Gardens in Newcastle, CA. It was a HOT afternoon and evening, but this venue has so much going for it… cooling blooming gardens, lawns and meandering pathways, sparking swimming pool, views of the Sierras and the cattle that lazily graze down the sloping hillside.  The venue owner (jovial and helpful Mike) sets up a variety of lawn games for the guests’ entertainment and he even gave Matt & Becca slices of watermelon so they could “entertain” two curious cows that came up to the fence.  Priceless!

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11-wedding-games-a-day-to-rememberBecca requested a romantic palette of pinks and soft colors with a vibe of Vintage French. Matt had a preference for wood, leans to a Western motif and asked that his Dad’s cool old jeep be incorporated in some way. We blended these two styles perfectly. The guest tables were a mixture of wood farm tables and soft pink draped round tables and pink cut glassware was also added. The place cards were individual planter boxes (favors for the guests) that had their “brand” literally burned onto the wood boxes.  Quite the DIY project! This same brand was used on the menu cards and cocktail napkins.  The jeep became the “gift table” and a display spot for parents and grandparents wedding photos.

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After a delicious family style alfresco dinner held under large market umbrellas on the courtyard patio, the party started! Family and friends thoroughly enjoyed themselves (I’m a softy for the daughter-daughter dance) as the evening temperatures cooled down and the sunset served for fantastic photos of the newlyweds.


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Thank you to all the fabulous vendors who helped to create the perfect day and night for Becca & Matt.  So beautiful and so much fun!

Wedding Ceremony: St. Joseph’s Catholic Church

Reception Venue: Gold Hill Gardens

Photographer:  Teresa K Photography

Florist:  Ambience Floral Design

Caterer: Real Food Caterer

Bakery:  Divine Desserts

Rentals:  Celebrations Party Rentals

DJ/MC: Function 45 Event Entertainment


Juliana & Derek ~ Married! {Part 3… and Final} The details and the p-a-r-t-y

Jun 22, 2016   //   by Lora   //   Weddings  //  1 Comment

Thanks for letting me brag about my kiddo’s wedding day.  I know three posts is excessive… but what can I say?  I am pretty proud of this event and of my daughter and new son-in-law.  As mentioned in Post 1 and Post 2, the weather was rainy all day, with a few breaks for some quick picture taking.  The Barn at Second Wind was wonderful for keeping the guests dry during dinner, and thankfully we were able to secure a clear top tent to hold the buffet, bar and the dancing portion to the evening. I can honestly say I don’t believe the 130 guests minded any of the small inconveniences.  Everybody had a fantastic time!!

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The decor and theme for the reception was relaxed, fun and whimsical.  We used Second Wind’s  beautiful custom made wood farm tables and mixed with round tables. Centerpieces gave a nod to Juliana’s gardening hobby (of which Derek enjoys also), plus Juliana is a clinical dietician so healthy food groups played into the theme –  we had artichokes, beets, grapes and garden greens and incorporated touches of feathers for whimsy.  Each guest received a jar of homemade jelly (Juliana and Derek’s mama had been busy for months cookin’ and canning). And that cake!!!  Requesting a “naked cake,” this masterpiece was displayed on a wine barrel and was admired by all… and it was delicious as well!  Fun fact: Derek’s brother made the wire cake topper (thanks Josh!)

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Our adored and uber talented DJ/MC organized the table release to the buffet by the guests ‘singing for their supper.’  HYSTERICAL!!!  These people really got into the action and were not shy.

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Once the delicious, flavorful and abundant buffet was consumed, it was time to break down those tables to make room for some dancing! The daddy~daughter dance was sweet and fun.  The rain drops and reflection of the market lights on the tent roof made for a magical evening that will not soon be forgotten.

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There was a break in the weather giving enough time for Juliana and Derek to walk across the country road to the old abandoned railroad tracks on the river levee for romantic photos!  Love these.

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Thanks all for reading THREE blog posts!!  My heartfelt appreciation goes out to:

Venue:  The Barn at Second Wind (owners are so great and accommodating, beautiful, rustic, great grounds and that barn!)

Rental Company (linens, chargers and TENTS!!):  Celebrations Party Rentals (great inventory and loved the tents)

Rental vintage touches (place card door, bar backdrop) Getting Hitched? Wedding Rentals:

Photographer:  Sam with Red Sneaker Studio (fast, thorough, light-hearted, fun and imaginative)

Florist:  Sarah Acrich/formerly of Cuttings Floral Design (dear friend, talented, great vision, clever)

DJ/MC:  Steve Schon w/Function 45 Pro DJ Service (fab entertainer, smart, funny, best DJ on the mic, sensitive, handles lighting, sound and FUN)

Caterer:  Jackson Catering & Events (Chef Chris, Chef Branden, “detail man-Events Coordinator” Evan… the greatest team! Cuisine is delicious, creative, varied, and all are so much fun to work with

Cake:  Pretty Sweet (Musarrat is an artist – designer extraordinaire; she puts her heart and soul into creating wedding cakes).

Hair & Make-up:  Jennifer Gilchrist (always on time, always quick, great hair and make-up talents, super sweet)

Day-of Coordinator:  Kendra w/Pfeiffer Event Planning (my friend, right arm, eyes-in-the-back-of-her-head and my partner in crime!)

{Part 2} Juliana & Derek’s Wedding! Wine~Butterflies~Rain~Happiness

Jun 16, 2016   //   by Lora   //   Weddings  //  1 Comment

Part 2 covers the wedding ceremony… perhaps I am partial, but it really was a lovely wedding.  Juliana and Derek were giddy, happy and all smiles, which made me smile… only a few sweet tears fell.  The clear top tent was perfection due to the fact we had showers all day and at moments there were breaks, such as when Juliana made her entrance on her wonderful (and nervous) daddy’s arm… however, as we sat and witnessed the nuptials, the pitter patter of rain drops  started up again, but it was a delight to look up into the heritage oak tree and see the rain fall on the tent roof.

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Derek’s aunt  performed the ceremony beautifully.  She included a touching (and funny) wine ceremony (the wine glass did have a few rain drops inside… befitting of sharing in the full day and life’s experiences).



Through my career, I have performed a number of ceremonial butterfly releases and our daughters have grown up with the gift Swallowtail Farms would give of a couple extra Monarchs for their enjoyment to release in our backyard.  So of course, I had to arrange for a butterfly release at Juliana and Derek’s wedding!  Due to the cool damp weather, we knew the butterflies might be sluggish, and happy to sit a few extra minutes on the fingers of the guests – what a treat!  An Indian legend says “When one whispers a dream to a butterfly, the dream will come true.”  Many whispers were made and I hope will come true.  The best part of all, two of the butterflies flew directly to our daughter, Allison’s, hair and the other went to Juliana’s bouquet and stayed on that bouquet all evening.  It was so special!

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And dear readers, you have to endure Post #3 (about the reception details and p-a-r-t-y), so be sure to come on back and check it out!

My heartfelt thank you to:

Venue:  The Barn at Second Wind

Rental Company (linens, chargers and TENTS!!):  Celebrations Party Rentals

Photographer:  Sam with Red Sneaker Studio

Florist:  Sarah Acrich (talented friend formerly of Cuttings Floral Design)

DJ/MC:  Steve Schon w/Function 45 Pro DJ Service

Hair & Make-up:  Jennifer Gilchrist

Bufferfly Release:  Swallowtail Farms

Calligraphy work:  The Calligraphy Girl

Day-of Coordinator:  Kendra w/Pfeiffer Event Planning (my friend, right arm and partner in crime!)

My Daughter, Juliana & Derek ~ Married {the Pre-Social}

Jun 12, 2016   //   by Lora   //   Weddings  //  2 Comments

{at long last, I can blog about my daughter’s wedding…sorry for the delay, readers!)

When my wonderful daughter and new son-in-law started their wedding planning (long distance from their home in Portland, Oregon), they described a relaxed vibe to their day, with lawn games, great music, delicious but non-fussy food, with family and friends sharing togetherness. They wanted a country setting with blooming mustard, a barn would be awesome, and a teeny bit of “bling” would be cool.  I suggested The Barn at Second Wind situated along the Sacramento River Delta just 15 minutes from downtown… true country, oh so convenient, and it checked all the boxes.  Love at first sight… and off we went planning.  Always in the back of my mind, with an April wedding, was the possibility of rain… and guess what?  Weather was nice all week, until the day before and wedding day – Yes, it rained!  Thankfully not a driving, pouring rain, but enough to require the last minute addition of tents and a supply of umbrellas!

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This post will cover the “getting ready” and the fun prior to the wedding ceremony. We planned for a 1 ½ hour pre-social we called “Lemonade on the Lawn” – this was the time the sun would be out, birds chirping,  horseshoes, bocce ball, corn hole and washers, and board games, however… only the hardcore Portlandians braved the drizzle (which wasn’t bad at times and they had fun!) The darling flower girls didn’t mind the weather, either!

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6GamesJuliana wore a simple short crisp-white garden-party dress and after their “First Look,”  she and Derek thoroughly enjoyed this relaxed time prior to the ceremony. We set up a creative “Pimp Your Processo” station as well as a lovely homemade jams and jellies table paired with a variety of cheeses. Juliana and Derek’s mom had been making jams for weeks – the pairing was fun and delicious!


Rain11FOUR of Derek’s groomsmen are engaged and having their wedding day within this upcoming year.  Must be a marriage trend!

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Our family.  Big Sister/Matron of Honor Allison, and Scott, were married just last year!

Next blog post will be about the wedding itself… be sure to come back and check it out!

My heartfelt thank you to:

Venue:  The Barn at Second Wind

Rental Company (linens, chargers and TENTS!!):  Celebrations Party Rentals

Photographer:  Sam with Red Sneaker Studio

Florist:  Sarah Acrich (talented friend formerly of Cuttings Floral Design)

Signs and Calligraphy:  The Calligraphy Girl

Hair & Make-up:  Jennifer Gilchrist

Rachel & Joe ~ Married! {Part 2}

Dec 15, 2015   //   by Lora   //   Weddings  //  No Comments

Rachel & Joe were married on a warm day in August at the Barn at Second Wind.  Located along the Sacramento River just south of downtown, this was the perfect venue for the vision of a “casual country vibe, with a bit of bling.”  Check out Part 1 to read about the ceremony and leading up to the nuptials.  After the wedding, guests enjoyed lawn games, and appetizers under the spread of a heritage oak tree.  Gentlemen (and a few ladies) relaxed in the Cigar Lounge set up by Trish of Getting Hitched? Wedding Rentals – Trish also provided all the beautiful white-washed chairs and rustic farm tables, much of the table décor, and other cool furniture pieces.  The beautiful flowers were created by Emily with Embellish Floral Design.  A yummy “farm to table” summer time buffet was served up by All Seasons All Reasons and a very special wedding cake was made by Joe’s mother (how cool is that?).  Second Wind is across the street from the river which offers outstanding photo ops; the railroad tracks are perfect for pictures (don’t worry, it’s a discontinued line!!)  And Oh My Goodness, my buddy Mike of Mr. DJ Event Services created outstanding lighting effects, but also caused this party crowd to take their dancing seriously.  Including a little Whip/Nae Nae!

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Thank you Rachel and Joe… you guys are great!  It was a delight working with you and I loved seeing all the details come together  at your beautiful wedding.  Wishing you the very best!  A very special thank you to photographer Lori Makabe for capturing soooo many beautiful images!

Alyssa & Austin ~ Married!

Nov 3, 2015   //   by Lora   //   Weddings  //  No Comments


On a beautiful warm summer day, high school sweethearts Alyssa and Austin married at the home of a family friend – an historic country manor estate along the Sacramento River in Walnut Grove, CA.  Alyssa is sweet, pretty, shy and kind; Austin is devoted to “Lissy,” fun loving and has movie star looks (right?)  Alyssa requested bright colors for the floral palette – a citrus theme, and Katie with Ambience Floral Design certainly hit the nail on the head.  Gorgeous!   With a lovely string quartet playing as guests arrived, the estate was the backdrop for the wedding ceremony and felt very Gatsby-esque… especially following the ceremony when guests picked up glasses of champagne as they made their way to the lovely backyard for the dinner reception.  We created a cute brick lined flower bed of alyssum plants for the escort cards (notice that tie-in with Alyssa’s name?).  This couple loves their Italian food and requested an antipasto display, which Beth Sogaard Catering beautifully executed.  Dining family-style, alfresco poolside, and then later dancing to a full party band, The Mixx, with stunning landscape lighting and bistro market lights strung about, this was a very happy bride and groom who enjoyed a fantastic {better than} Gatsby vibe wedding day!  The lovely crystal clear photos were taken by Kris Holland Photography… the not so good ones, courtesy of my iPhone!

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