Baby, it’s cold outside!

Baby, its cold outside!

Are beach honeymoons overrated??? Well… probably not, they’re pretty great actually… but is the sun-kissed, salt-tanged vibe the only way to go for a wonderful honeymoon? We think not! And so we’d like to dedicate this blog-post to the Winter Wonderland Honeymooners out there, with…

5 Great Reasons to Honeymoon in Winter!

  1. Snuggling up together. Nothing like the cooler weather to give you a great reason to share body warmth with your loved one!
  2. Open fireplaces. They flicker mesmerisingly. They crackle gently in an otherwise silent room. And they provide an outlet for the low-level arsonist tendencies of the modern male. What’s not to love?
  3. Mulled wine. You just don’t get enough reasons to make this stuff in your day to day life, but it’s a beautiful, beautiful thing.
  4. Hot tubs. Enough said.
  5. Skiing (or snowboarding; whatever works for you). After all, how much time can one couple spend lazing around being loved-up?! Skiing gives you a fantastic opportunity to get your daily buzz on your holiday (as well as some healthy exercise!) and then snuggle up with your newly-minted spouse in front of a crackling fireplace in the evening. And don’t forget your glass of mulled wine!

Winter weddings are often cheaper too, and you may find it tricky planning dates for both the wedding and the honeymoon that fall into a particular time of year if you’re going overseas (if so, you might want to take a look at our post on When To Travel).

So there you have it – the alternative to the beach shack you maybe hadn’t considered, but perhaps you should! Check out our sample registry for more ideas, or click here for more info on creating your own honeymoon registry. Happy planning!

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Crossing to the dark side: those who nap through jetlag

Crossing to the dark side: those who nap through jetlag

This may well be the most controversial blog post I will ever write, because as everyone knows, you don’t do it. You don’t ever take a nap in the middle of the day if you have jetlag, you stay awake until whenever night time is in the country you have flown to.

So here’s my confession: I nap. On purpose. And I highly recommend it!

Why? Well, let me talk you through my jetlagged history. The first time I ever flew across so many timezones that I arrived at my destination the day before I left, I held to the maxim that one does not nap during the day if one is jetlagged. Unfortunately, we’d arrived in Rome at 6am, leaving a yawning gulf of time between touch down and sleep time. All the same, I bravely battled on despite having achieved only about 2 hours of broken sleep on a plane over the past 24 hours. I began the day with less than ideal muscle co-ordination, tripping over cobblestones, my own shoes, and, once, a parked scooter. The day wore on, and I ignored my aching limbs and red, throbbing eyes to feign interest in various statues and fountains in an attempt to distract myself until bedtime. Exhausted from my ongoing efforts to remain upright, I checked my watch. Roughly fifteen minutes had passed.

And that’s when it dawned on me: no good could come out of this day while I was so thoroughly dysfunctional. I was wasting an entire precious day of my holidays! And why? Because “The Rule” is that you don’t nap when you have jetlag. Well, I thought, it’s my holiday and I’ll nap if I want to. And so I napped... and then I enjoyed the rest of the afternoon, and slept that night as per normal!

There is, however, a careful technique that I follow when engaging in this most dangerous of first-world-problem pursuits.

  1. Don’t oversleep. It’s a power-nap only. Set the alarm on your phone to maximum loudness. Allow yourself no more than 20-40 minutes on the clock (depending on just how bad the calibre of sleep on your flight was)
  2. If necessary, set a second alarm to go off at the same time, and place it a couple of metres away so you have to get up to turn it off.
  3. This is the tricky bit: when the alarm goes off YOU GET OUT OF BED. DO NOT PRESS SNOOZE. DO NOT ALLOW YOURSELF EVEN A MOMENT LONGER TO REST.
  4. Immediately go and take a hot shower. This is necessary because it prevents you from falling back asleep, makes you feel a bit less crappy, and also gets you clean.
  5. Coffee. Strong. Black, if you can take it.
  6. HAPPINESS!!!

I should be honest here, and say that when that alarm goes off after 40 minutes you will be dragged from the murkiest depths of unconsciousness and you will not feel remotely like getting out of bed. Your brain will try to tell you that you need more sleep, and your brain will be very persuasive about this, BUT this groggy phase passes in about 15-20 minutes, after which time you will feel completely non-jetlagged! And in doing so, you’ll have gained back a whole day from your holiday that would otherwise be spent moping around willing the day to be over.

So. I nap through jetlag. And have not, to date, been struck by lightning for so doing. Just a little idea to roll around while you’re planning your honeymoon, folks. Check out our sample registry for more ideas, or check out our home page for more info on how Our Honeymoon Registry works. Happy planning!

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Adding your own choice of photos to your registry

Adding your own choice of photos to your registry

Weddings should be beautiful. It is a truth universally acknowledged! That’s why at Our Honeymoon Registry, we’ve worked so hard to make our registries the most beautiful in the business, laden with stunning images to capture the essence of what you want your honeymoon to look like (and make all your guests jealous!!!).

Since it is such a personal aspect of what you dream of in a honeymoon, it was important to us that people making their registries would be able to personalise it and can choose which images they want to use throughout. You might like some or all of the images we suggest for you (that’s the much quicker option), but it’s fun to put in at least some of your own choosing.

Some tips on choosing images for the main welcome screen:

  • This is a big screen shot so you really do need a high resolution photo. Shots from phones invariably come out grainy and dull in tone. It’s worth getting a good, clear photo for this one, because when you get it right, it’s a stunning sight to dazzle your guests with.
  • Look for images with a lot of “clear space”. The text (if you choose to have text) will take up a portion of the screen and for ease of reading, it’s good to have a background which isn’t too busy. Visually, these big shots with one clear focal point also pack the biggest punch, even without text.
  • Any image of the two of you which is high resolution and has a lot of clear spaces (think big skies, sandy beaches, brick walls, fields of grass, etc) looks great. Some options that might work for you include:
    • An image from a professional photo shoot, if you went for this option when you got engaged
    • An image of the two of you in a place which is special to you, like the place you met, a favourite holiday spot or where the proposal took place
    • A pic of your honeymoon destination
    • A pic of your wedding venue, for example if it’s going to be in a beautiful garden, or at the beach
    • An element from your wedding invitation

... and now for some tips on choosing images for the gift items:

  • The images will all be resized into a landscape style rectangle, so if you choose a portrait style image it’s likely to look oddly compressed when it shows up on your registry. If you really want to use a particular portrait style image, think about cropping it down using software like photoshop or picmonkey (www.picmonkey.com).
  • The final size of the image will be up to 480 pixels high depending on which layout you choose (the width will be adjusted to stay in proportion with the height), so if your image is smaller than this, it’s also likely to become distorted and grainy when it shows up on your registry.
  • It can be nice to use a literal representation of the gift if you know exactly what you want (eg, if you’ve chosen a specific luxury hotel, sometimes you can use actual images from their website, often for accommodation, but also spa treatments, and restaurant meals), OR
  • Sometimes people like to be a bit whimsical in their choice of pictures, such as:
    Adding your own choice of photos to your registry

    Scuba diving lessons

    Adding your own choice of photos to your registry

    Transportation around the island

    Adding your own choice of photos to your registry

    Donation to charity for saving endangered animals

Check out our sample registry for more ideas, or click here for more info on creating your own honeymoon registry. Happy planning!

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Top Five Tips for the Groom

Top Five Tips for the Groom

In the past, grooms haven’t often had so much to do with wedding planning. They might have been relegated to dealing with things like transportation and the reception band, plus the odd thank-a-thon speech. These days expectations about the involvement of the groom are changing, especially from many of the grooms themselves! For those of you out there who feel a little lost at sea regarding how much to do and what the main faux pas are, here’s a little list to set you on the right path.

  1. Register together
    Yes, this might take you an entire afternoon or two, but at least with a honeymoon registry you won’t have to stand there with your hands in your pockets shopping! You’ll regret the decision not to be involved in the planning if you arrive at the destination and all the gifts that you’ve been given are for activities you couldn’t care less about... and they are scheduled to take up your entire honeymoon. Get involved, and really think about the things you love doing when you travel. You can look here and here to get some ideas from other couples who used Our Honeymoon Registry. It’s surprising how many people feel compelled to have a certain type of journey just because it’s a “Honeymoon” – but that’s a mistake. It’s more important to stay true to yourselves and your style of travel. If you both love a muddy trekking adventure-type holiday, then go wild with that because that’s going to provide you with the most fantastic memories for the rest of your lives.
  2. Ex-girlfriends do not belong at your wedding.
    Need we say more?
  3. The bride is always right, not the parents or future parents-in-law.
    Remember that this is you and your fiancée’s wedding, not your parents’ wedding and not your partner’s parents’ wedding. Make sure there are not too many people sticking their opinions in regarding the wedding as it will fry your fiancée’s nerves.
  4. Keep the romance alive
    Be careful not to get snowed under with the planning and organising, so that you forget to have fun and enjoy the excitement that should be there for your upcoming wedding. The little things count here. Try to have some wedding-planning-free time together in the lead-up to the big day. On the day of the wedding, maybe surprise the bride by getting a friend to bring over a fabulous breakfast treat for her, or pack a little gift to surprise her with on the honeymoon.
  5. Speeches, speeches, speeches!
    Get it right, and you’re the heart and soul of the party. Get it wrong, and people have spent all evening waiting with great expectation… to hear you say a bunch of thank-yous and then walk off. Be wary of the thank-a-thon speeches! Yes, you should thank various people for their involvement, but if that’s all there is to it then it’s not the funny, emotional story that everyone hopes to hear. A little anecdote here, a little history there… it’s not so hard to make it special. How did you meet? What did you think when you first saw her? Did you ever try really hard to impress her and ended up with a very different story to tell? Remember to PLAN and PRACTISE the speech!!!!! It will be worth it, we promise!

So, lots of things to think about and fun times to be had by all (Heheh! I can almost hear everyone groaning about that advice on speeches!!). Happy planning to our lucky grooms-to-be!

Check out our sample registry for more ideas, or click here for more info on creating your own honeymoon registry. Happy planning!

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Choosing WHEN to honeymoon: To travel now… or then?

Choosing WHEN to honeymoon: To travel now… or then?

Are you planning on going on your honeymoon straight after the wedding? It used to be a given that that’s how a honeymoon was done, but increasingly couples are choosing to delay their travel plans until a few weeks, or sometimes even a few months after the wedding. Why would they do that, you ask? Well, let’s take a look at the pros and cons:

Delaying the honeymoon after the wedding – PROS:

  • It gives you time to relax! Be under no illusions here, weddings are a BIG day and you’ll spend the entire time posing for photos and mingling with guests. You’ll love every minute of it, but by day’s end the beautiful bride’s feet will ache from those fabulous shoes and she’ll probably be wishing that stunning gown wasn’t quite so well-fitted... Going straight to the airport and dealing with queues and jetlag may be the last thing you want to do.
  • Less planning. Even those with outstanding organisational skills will be rushed at the end – it’s unavoidable with so many things that need to be checked at the last minute. Then there are bridesmaids coming over to have hair and make-up done, relatives milling around your home, pre-wedding photos… do you really want to try and organise your packing at the same time? Do you want to be wondering where you’ve put your toothbrush on the day of your wedding?
  • Getting the season right. This is a big factor in the honeymoon-delay rationale. If you’ve always wanted to go to Venice on your honeymoon, there’s no point going in winter when it’s flooded, even if that time of year is perfect weather for a wedding where you live.

Delaying the honeymoon after the wedding - CONS:

  • Where’s the buzz?! After the massive high you’ll be on from your wedding, it’s not much fun to just go home afterwards like it wasn’t a life-changing day!
  • A holiday, or a honeymoon? If you delay the trip by too much, you run the risk that it will feel like a “normal” trip instead of a honeymoon.

Tips for choosing when to travel if you don’t want to delay the journey

  • Give yourselves a day to recover. If you’ve got a long flight ahead of you, consider staying locally for a day at a gorgeous hotel in your own city to relax and recover from the wedding before heading off to the airport.
  • Can you plan the wedding date around the honeymoon? If there’s somewhere you REALLY want to go for your honeymoon and certain seasons are off-limits at that destination, try to choose a wedding date that falls in the right season for visiting.
  • Let the destination suit the season. Be ruthless! If the seasons really don’t match up for the wedding and honeymoon destination and you don’t want to move the wedding or delay the trip, then go somewhere else instead! You’ll thank us for this tough love approach one day!
  • Plan to take it easy when you get there. It’s a good idea to schedule those easy-going gifts like massages and theatre tickets for the first day or two of your honeymoon to give you a chance to wind-down, and leave the horse-back riding and scuba-diving for later on. We’ve got some ideas on how to choose gifts here.

A few ideas to think about, anyway.

Check out our sample registry for more ideas, or click here for more info on creating your own honeymoon registry. Happy planning!

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