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2 WEDDINGS - Spring

Left side photo: Cregg Annarino

The Westerly Sun

Princess CROWNE



Sunday, April 28, 2013



4 Steps to Finding the Perfect Engagement Ring (NewsUSA) - There are a few big purchases in life that you really don’t want to mess up — a first house, a health care plan, a new car, and especially, the engagement ring for your loved one. According to The Knot, a popular wedding inspiration magazine and planning website, the decision is so important it takes consumers more than three months to find the perfect ring, and the average cost is $5,000.

TABLE OF CONTENTS 4 Steps to Finding the Perfect Engagement Ring . . . . . . . . 3 Engaged? Start Planning Now! A to-do list for brides-to-be . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Budget-Conscious Brides Trim Bill With Destination Weddings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Five questions to ask before you 0tie the knot . . . . . . . . . . 7 A Toast to the Bride ~ Tips and sips for the perfect bridal celebration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

If you’re starting to sweat under the pressure, here’s a step-by-step guide to make your decision easier:

1. DETERMINE THE METAL • Platinum is a naturally white metal, meaning it will never fade, change color, or need to be re-dipped or re-plated. • White gold, on the other hand, is a created by adding an alloy mix to yellow gold. As the white color fades, the ring will need to be re-dipped a few times each year.

Honeymoon Tips for Lasting Memories and Relaxation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

• Platinum pairs well with all stones because its natural color will not cast any unwanted color onto the gem, plus its density makes for an extremely secure setting.

Fresh and Festive Wedding Celebrations with Tropical Flair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

• If you want matching bands, be sure to consider what your partner likes before deciding on a metal.

The wedding shoe trend for everyone: pain-free and pretty . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14


Honeymoon encore: The big move in . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

• Traditionally, round and princess cuts are the most popular.

Money and marriage: Tips to achieve financial happiness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Bridal trends transform grandma’s china from vintage to vogue . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Relax while planning your wedding with these financial and budgeting tips . . . . . . . . . . . . 20

Sunday, April 28, 2013 JOHN LAYTON, Advertising • NANCY YOUNG, Editor/Designer

• Recently, celebrities such as Angelina Jolie, Sofia Vergara and Drew Barrymore have brought attention to less common cuts such as emerald, cushion and radiant.

3. DETERMINE THE STYLE OF THE RING • Vintage: Offering a traditional look, these settings can either be an actual estate piece or a new ring with a vintage style. • Modern: Tension settings, where the diamond is held without prongs, are a popular style. Rough diamonds also offer a modern twist to a ring. • Classic: Three-stone and solitaire settings offer a timeless look. Other classic styles include pave and halo settings.

4. DETERMINE THE BUDGET • According the a 2011 jewelry study by The Knot, the bride views setting, stone cut and quality, and metal used as the most important aspects of a ring, whereas the groom focuses on stone quality, style and price. Each of these attributes factors into the price of the ring, so it helps to make sure the couple is aligned before shopping. • Platinum rings come in a variety of price points — with many costing less than $1,500 — so couples are sure to get the best value for the ring. Learn more at ♥

4 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

Engaged? Start Planning Now! A to-do list for brides-to-be (Family Features) Preparing for the big day means planning a multitude of details; everything from the flower arrangements to that something blue must be decided upon well in advance of the ceremony. Here are some tips to help ensure your big day goes off without a hitch.

THE BIG DECISIONS The decision to get married is the first of many big decisions you will be making in the weeks and months to come. Here are some things to consider right away: • Pick a date. Talk with your fiancé and family (and your fiancé’s family) about potential wedding dates to ensure the important people in both your lives will be able to take part.

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• Set a budget. Budgeting for your wedding is crucial, as this will have a great impact on every other aspect of your day, as well as your honeymoon. Plan for a little wiggle room for unexpected expenses. • Choose a location. Because most popular bridal spots are just that — popular — you may want to start searching for a location quickly. • Organize the bridal party. Make careful decisions about who you want supporting you leading up to the big day, and who will be displayed in front of everyone in your life. • Pick a style. Many brides choose wedding styles that are reflected in their save-the-dates, invitations, ceremonies, receptions and thank-you cards. Choosing a theme and color scheme in the beginning will help narrow down options later.

• Hire a caterer. Take into account the dietary needs of your guests by offering a variety of menu options, including a vegetarian dish. • Order the cake. Whether you choose a large multi-tiered cake or cupcakes, remember to keep your budget in mind-and pick flavors you and your fiancé truly enjoy. • Make the announcement. Decide how you want to let the community know of your planned nuptials. Do you want to take professional engagement photos? Do you plan to contact your local paper? Will you include a link to a wedding day website on your savethe-date or your wedding invitations? • Get the gown. On your wedding day, everyone will be awaiting a glimpse of your gown. Listen to your instincts and choose a gown that “feels right” and reflects your personality and style. • Dress your party. Once you have chosen the wedding dress of your dreams, speak with your fiancÈ about his wishes for his suit, as well as the bridal party attire. • Hire a photographer. Choose your professional photographer wisely. With a walk down the aisle, father/daughter dance and toast, your father is sure to get photographed, but your mother might get overlooked. Make sure to ask the photographer to get shots of your mother throughout the day as well. • Choose your flowers. Once you set the date, discuss with your florists which flowers are in season to help narrow down your selection. You may love tulips, but if you have a winter wedding, they may be hard to come by, and may be more expensive. • Book the entertainment. Do you want a DJ or a live band? Talk with your fiancé about your music preferences, as well as the types of tunes you want played at your reception to keep your guests on the dance floor.

BEFORE THE BIG DAY • Create a website for your wedding to keep guests informed of events and for easy access to registry information. Provide accommodation information for those guests See Engaged, page 22

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Prepare you and your wedding party for the big day! Customize manicures, pedicures, massage and facial services to a package that fits your needs and budget.



Pre-Wedding Day Packages for Bride & Bridesmaids UPTOWN COUTURE BRIDAL PACKAGE Includes upkeep facial, 30 min body massage, Shellac French manicure and (day of wedding) bridal updo for $195

UPTOWN COUTURE DELUXE BRIDAL PACKAGE Includes pre-wedding day: 60 min elemental nature facial, 60 min elemental nature body massage, Shellac French manicure, Weekapaug pedicure, and trial updo. On day of wedding Bridal updo and mineral makeup application for $245

HAPPY COUPLE PACKAGE Relax together before your big day. Couples package includes: Manicures and Weekapaug pedicures, followed by upkeep facials and a 30 min body massage to refresh and relax you with your groom to be for $310 ($155 per person) TEMPTU Airbrush makeup applications are available. Innovative cosmetics have been developed to ensure wear-ability and durability even in the most difficult conditions. Customized packages are available as well as discounts for two or more people. EYELASH EXTENSION Individual eyelash applications and Mink strip lash applications available for a long lasting dramatic eye. GREAT BRIDESMAID GIFT IDEAS! Alex and Ani bangles, Ficarre headbands and hairpieces, and JoJo of Boston’s, Swarovski crystal stud earrings. We offer all natural vita liberata spray tanning applications. To inquire about bridal and wedding services contact Talia Mortrude, Uptown Salon’s Wedding Coordinator, at 401-596-9100 or e-mail


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6 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

Budget-Conscious Brides Trim Bill With Destination Weddings

(NewsUSA) - Tying the knot isn’t what it used to be. The wedding industry is as profitable as primetime football, celebrities compete for the shortest, most gimmicky marriages (72 days or less?) and the exotic appeal of a romantic getaway has led to the widespread popularity of destination weddings.

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One in every 10 weddings features an exotic locale, or at least a location neither the bride nor groom calls home. While there’s no absolute explanation as to why destinationweddings have started a bridal takeover, the hefty price of typical weddings is reason enough for many — especially if Daddy isn’t footing the bill.

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“If done correctly, destination weddings can be a cheaper alternative for everyone. Guests don’t have to buy expensive gifts, just a ticket. All the money spent on the wedding party, venues, refreshments, cake, reception and decor is significantly reduced if not cut altogether,” explains Nini Pardo, wedding planner at Stay in Costa Rica, an accommodations and rental management company. The author of “Destination Weddings for Dummies,” Susan Breslow Sardone, says the traditional American wedding costs an average of $28,082, whereas destination weddings average around $20,600.

“Some of the cost difference is definitely a result of resorts and hotels capitalizing on the trend. Many now offer the full wedding package with wedding planners, musicians, photographers, etc. We employ full-time wedding coordinators, like myself, to craft intimate weddings at our Los Suenos Resort,” Pardo adds. “We’ve found it really appealing to budget-conscious brides.” Budget-conscious brides have become a trend as well, according to Patricia MacArthur, executive director of — a go-to authority on all things wedding-related. MacArthur says more brides are trimming expenses by taking the DIY route for guest favors and some decorative elements. For tropical weddings especially, many of the cheaper, DIY options are more easily packed into suitcases. For instance, colorful fabric is being used to replace flowers and native delicacies are replacing towering cakes. An extra tip from the experts, when considering the perfect setting to make your vows and possibly trash the dress: look at locations that are one flight away from you and most of your guests. Direct flights tend to be cheaper and less hassle. To learn more about saying “I do” in Costa Rica, visit ♥

Sunday, April 28, 2013


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Five questions to ask before you tie the knot (BPT) - “I’m so lucky I’m marrying my best friend,” is a phrase you often hear in wedding toasts. Now that you’ve found the person you want to spend the rest of your life with, make sure you protect each other by considering the bigger financial picture. According to Wedding Paper Divas, 47 percent of engaged couples spend between one and nine hours per week planning their weddings, but it’s unlikely that much of that time is spent planning for life after the big day. “Getting married is the perfect time to take a fresh look at your entire financial picture, including your insurance needs,” says Doug Smith, senior vice president of the Personal Lines division at Erie Insurance. “It’s much better to plan before the wedding so there are no surprises later.” Here are five key insurance questions to discuss with your spouse-to-be before taking a walk down the aisle:

WHERE’S MY BLING? Chances are you spent a lot of time and money picking out rings you’ll love and wear every day. But according to, one in 36 homes in the United States will be broken into this year, so it’s important to make sure you have the right insurance to cover your rings if they’re lost or stolen.

BABY, CAN YOU DRIVE MY CAR? Once you’re married, your spouse generally will be covered on your auto insurance policy and vice versa. This could mean opportunities for savings. Your strategy: Once you become a two-car home, you may be eligible for a multi-car discount. You should also consider bundling your car insurance with your homeowners and/or life insurance which can result in even more savings. Additionally, some insurance companies offer a lower rate for married couples, so talk to your insurance agent to find out if this applies to your policy.

HAVE YOU PROTECTED THE THINGS THAT MAKE YOUR HOUSE A HOME? Are you planning to move into a new home after the honeymoon? Whether or not your living situation changes, make sure your home and belongings are protected. Your strategy: Consider what new pieces will be added to your abode. If you purchase new furniture, art pieces or any other new belongings, it’s a good idea to make sure those items See Questions, page 22


Your strategy: Have your rings appraised to establish their value. Keep your store receipts

and take a picture of the rings. Having pictures and documentation helps speed up the claims process if you have to file a claim. Also, keep your rings in a safe deposit box when you’re not wearing them.


8 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

A Toast to the Bride Tips and sips for the perfect bridal celebration (Family Features) Whether it’s an engagement party, bridal shower, the reception or post-wedding brunch, professional event planner Alison Hotchkiss knows a thing or two about creating memorable bridal celebrations. As the founder-owner of Alison Events, and author of “The Destination Wedding Planner: The Ultimate Guide to Planning a Wedding From Afar” (Chronicle Books), she’s produced stunning weddings all over the world. Whether you enlist the help of a planner or do it yourself, Alison’s tips on entertaining will help you make your bridal celebration picture perfect. • Bubbles add a festive, celebratory note to any bridal celebration. I love Cupcake Prosecco sparkling wine from Italy. It’s crisp and refreshing — an affordable alternative to pricey French champagne yet equally delicious. • Food doesn’t have to be complicated to be remarkable. The finger foods here are varied and fla-

vorful — but they’re not hard to make. To satisfy all guest preferences, I always recommend 3 to 5 appetizers including chicken, beef and fish plus two veggie options (ideally one being vegan or dairy free). • A signature drink is a fun way to welcome guests and get the party off to a great start. The Prosecco Ginger Cocktail is delicious and memorable. I like to serve it in unconventional glassware and garnish with Persian cucumber “swizzle sticks” for even more impact. • A popular alternative to the traditional sit down meal at engagement parties or showers: food stations with a range of different foods offered at each. Pair a different wine with each station to create maximum variety and enjoyment as guests taste and mingle. • Factor in overall ambiance and the vibe you want for your wedding or event. Lighting is key. And when it comes to candles, more is more.




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Sunday, April 28, 2013 • Flavored vodka is another big trend I’m seeing right now. Look for vodkas infused with such exotic flavors as vanilla frosting, devil’s food cake and more. And don’t be afraid to mix spirits with wine: One of my favorite concoctions is a blend of lemony Cupcake Chiffon Vodka with muddled blackberries, fresh mint, sparkling grapefruit water and a splash of Cabernet Sauvignon. • It’s not only more fun to serve bite-sized cupcakes at your wedding but they offer more variety and unexpected flavor combinations than a traditional cake. • Be sure to have a good assortment of non-alcoholic beverages on hand as well such as bottled water, soft drinks and more to prevent dehydration and ensure that guests drink responsibly. For more tips from Alison for creating a bridal event to remember, visit

WEDDINGS - Spring Heat oven to 350°F. Spray baking sheet with nonstick spray and arrange bread slices on tray. Top each bread slice with a rounded tablespoon of cheese. Bake until cheese is melted, about 5 minutes. Remove from oven. Stand a crispy piece of prosciutto in the center of each melted mound of hot cheese and serve at once.

SHRIMP FAJITAS SALAD ON CRISP FLOUR TORTILLA CHIPS Yield: 12 servings, 2 pieces per serving 4 8-inch flour tortillas 1 ripe avocado, pitted and peeled 1-1/2 teaspoons fresh lime juice 1 teaspoon finely chopped cilantro


1/2 teaspoon finely chopped jalapeño, or more to taste 6 ounces extra small (salad shrimp) cooked and peeled shrimp, chopped (about 1-1/4 cups) 3 tablespoons finely chopped peeled ripe mango 2 teaspoons finely chopped cilantro 1 teaspoon finely chopped jalapeño 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice 2 tablespoons thin sliced green onion (scallion) tops (garnish) Preheat oven to 350°F. Use ruler to trim tortillas into 4 large 6-inch squares. Cut 24 2-inch squares from the squared off tortillas; discard trimmings. Spray baking sheet with nonstick spray. Arrange tortilla squares on pan and spray with nonstick spray. Bake until toasted golden and crisp, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool. Purée avocado, lime juice, cilantro and jalapeño in a food processor until smooth. Set aside. Combine shrimp, mango, cilantro, jalapeño and lime juice in small bowl. Spread about 1/2 tablespoon avocado mixture in center of each toasted tortilla square. Lightly press a tablespoon of the shrimp salad in center of each. Garnish with scallion slices and serve.

PROSECCO GINGER COCKTAIL Yield: 12 servings, 2 glasses per serving 1-1/2 cups water 1 cup (6 ounces) crystallized ginger 1/2 cup sugar 2 bottles (750 ml) Cupcake Prosecco, chilled 24 thin diagonal sliced seedless or Persian cucumber Combine water, ginger and sugar in saucepan and bring to a boil. Simmer on low heat, uncovered, 15 minutes. Off heat let steep, covered, 30 minutes. Cool. Purée in blender until smooth. Add 1 tablespoon ginger purée to each champagne glass. Add chilled prosecco, and stir well with swizzle stick until blended. Garnish glass with cucumber slice.

MELTED GRUYERE TOASTS WITH CRISP FRIZZLED PROSCIUTTO Yield: 12 servings, 2 pieces per serving Extra virgin olive oil 4 slices (about 3 ounces) prosciutto, cut into 1/2-inch pieces 24 1/4-inch-thick slices Italian bread 4 ounces aged Gruyere, coarsely shredded (about 1-3/4 cups) Heat 1/2 inch olive oil in medium skillet over medium heat until hot enough to sizzle a piece of prosciutto. Stir half the prosciutto into hot oil and cook over medium heat until prosciutto is crispy, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from with a slotted spoon to a side dish. Add remaining prosciutto and cook until crispy. Set aside.

BEET PURÉE WITH SESAME FLAVORS Yield: 12 servings, 2 pieces per serving 1 pound fresh golden or red beets, trimmed, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces 24 endive leaves, thick ends trimmed, separated into individual leaves 3 tablespoons reduced sodium tamari or soy sauce 1/2 teaspoon toasted (dark) sesame oil 1/4 teaspoon grated fresh ginger 1/4 teaspoon minced fresh garlic Salt to taste Toasted white sesame seeds (garnish) Place beets in a steamer and cook, covered, over simmering water, until tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool. Place endive leaves in a large bowl. Add water and a cup of ice and refrigerate until crisped, about 15 minutes. Drain and pat dry with paper towels. Place tamari or soy sauce in a small saucepan and boil gently until reduced to 1 tablespoon. Cool. Purée beets, 1 tablespoon reduced tamari or soy sauce, garlic, ginger, sesame oil and salt in food processor until smooth and creamy. Arrange endive leaves on a platter. With two teaspoons, place a mound of beet purÈe in the center of each leaf. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds. Note: Canned or cooked vacuum packed beets can be used as a substitute. ♥

10 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

Honeymoon Tips for Lasting Memories and Relaxation (NewsUSA) - The headache you’ve had for the past year planning your wedding, inviting all the guests and meticulously checking to ensure your big day runs smoothly is finally over. And, just around the corner, you can see your honeymoon in sight. The last things on your mind are planning, thinking and otherwise doing anything but relaxing, right? To ease your mind after the chaos, the ultimate Mexican getaways are offered by The Villa Group Resorts, complete with Hacienda-style villas, exotic spa treatments and palm treeframed views of the Pacific Ocean. You’ll finally be able to unwind, comfortable knowing everything you could need or want is at your fingertips. With seven different locations in four unique destinations including Cabo San Lucas, Puerto Vallarta, Nuevo Vallarta and the Sierra Madre Mountains, The Villa Group caters to a variety of interests. Each location offers unique scenery, activities and accommodations that can make your honeymoon exactly the way you’ve envisioned it. The myriad vacation options available to newlyweds are overwhelming, but noting a few key things will keep that headache at bay and your relaxation level high: • Pick a location that appeals to both of you. Where do you Cabo San Lucas

Southern Rhode Island & Southeastern Connecticut’s Wedding Specialists

see you two having the most fun? Secluded beaches, tranquil mountains or cobblestone streets lined with shopping? • Decide how you want to spend your days. Will you lounge poolside, taking in lagoons and waterfalls, or do you want to explore the surrounding area by horseback, canoe or bike? • Scope out the options in his-and-her spa treatments, such as hydrotherapy sessions, mud baths and massages. Some resorts offer ultra-relaxing themes, while others focus more on invigorating treatments. • How will you spend your evenings? Resorts often provide nighttime festivities, complete with themed dining events mere feet from your room. Or, would you rather be near a town where you can explore both the area’s attractions and what the resort provides? Whatever type of honeymoon you and your new spouse want, The Villa Group Resorts offers honeymoon packages prepared to make your matrimony celebration a once-in-a-lifetime experience. And, with packages geared toward wedding anniversaries, you can go back and have that once-in-life-time vacation all over again. For more information, visit ♥

Overlooking Long Island Sound, the Port “N” Starboard is one of the area’s largest year-round gourmet banquet facilities, catering parties from 300 to 1200 guests. The staff of “Centerplate” will exceed your culinary needs, with our Executive Chef overseeing your meal, ensuring its perfection. For smaller gatherings, we offer the same great service in The Pilot House and the Nautilus Room. For less formal gatherings, we’ll take the party out on the beach for you. Catering for corporate and family picnics from 50 to 10,000 is available in our covered picnic pavilion and on the beach.



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Sunday, April 28, 2013


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12 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

Fresh and Festive Wedding Celebrations with Tropical Flair (Family Features) Between engagement parties, bridal showers and brunches with new family and friends, there are plenty of opportunities to celebrate the happy couple. Why not bring a taste of the tropics to your celebrations with mangos? Each of these elegantly simple recipes is inspired by the color, texture and sweet, slightly exotic flavors of mangos — and you won’t need to hire a caterer to pull it off. When choosing mangos, don’t focus on color. Instead, gently squeeze. A ripe mango will be slightly soft to the touch, similar to a ripe peach or avocado. To get more fresh recipe ideas for wedding celebrations - and everyday



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Preheat oven to 400째F. Place sliced baguette on large rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and bake until golden brown and crisp, about 10 minutes, flipping halfway through baking. Set aside. Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat until fat is rendered and bacon is crisp, 12 to 15 minutes. Using slotted spoon, remove from pan and drain on paper towel lined plate. In small non-reactive saucepan, simmer balsamic vinegar and sugar over medium heat until reduced by half and balsamic is thick and syrupy, 15 to 20 minutes. Set aside to cool. To assemble, spread toasted bread with 1 1/2 teaspoons goat cheese, top with diced mango, sprinkle with cooked bacon, and drizzle with cooled balsamic syrup. Top with sliced green onions.

ROASTED SHRIMP AND MANGO SALAD Serves 8 to 10 2 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided 2 teaspoons paprika Salt and pepper 2 tablespoons lemon juice 1 tablespoon honey 6 cups mixed baby lettuces, washed and dried 2 large mangos (about 2 pounds), peeled, pitted and diced 1/4 cup shaved or shredded Parmesan cheese Preheat oven to 400째F. On large rimmed baking sheet, toss shrimp with 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, paprika, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Roast until pink and cooked through and beginning to lightly brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from oven and transfer to bowl to chill in refrigerator. In large bowl, whisk together remaining 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice and honey. Season with salt and pepper. Toss lettuce, mango and chilled shrimp in olive oil lemon juice mixture. Divide among plates, and sprinkle with Parmesan.


Note: Balsamic syrup can be stored at room temperature for up to 1 week.


GOAT CHEESE, BACON AND MANGO CROSTINI Makes about 30 pieces 1 baguette, sliced crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil Salt

Memories Of A Lifetime Begin At The Haversham House

1 pound bacon, chopped 1 cup balsamic vinegar 3 tablespoons sugar 8 ounces goat cheese, softened 2 large mangos (about 2 lbs.), peeled, pitted and diced 3 green onions, sliced thin (about 1/3 cup)

Makes 48 mini cupcakes Cupcakes 1 15.25-ounce box vanilla cake mix 1 cup water 1/2 cup vegetable oil 3 eggs See Festive, page 21

The Haversham House exudes country charm. Surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens, a fieldstone waterfall and serene koi pond, you and your guests will feel transported to another world. Step inside and discover an elegant, glass-enclosed reception room with rich mahogany walls, glowing chandeliers, three stone fireplaces and seating for up to 150 guests. Our outdoor stone patio and beautiful hilltop gazebo make the perfect setting for your ceremony, cocktail hour, and beautiful wedding photographs.

Image By:

Image By: contact our events coordinators 401.322.1717 or email


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14 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

The wedding shoe trend for everyone: pain-free and pretty (BPT) - Sparkles, spangles and color, new or vintage, whatever your preference in wedding shoe styles there’s one trend that every bride should get behind: comfort. “Pretty flats and even tennis shoes have been gaining popularity among brides for several years, and while those styles may not be to everyone’s taste, the concept of comfortable wedding shoes is good for everyone,” says Dr. Crystal Holmes, a doctor of podiatric medicine (DPM) and spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA). While an APMA survey indicates that most women do emphasize comfort over looks when choosing dress shoes, brides may consider comfort less important than style on their big day. “Brides may think that since they’re only wearing their wedding shoes for

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a day, it doesn’t matter if the shoes make their feet hurt,” Holmes says. “But shoes that hurt your feet can cause long-term problems, and make existing ones even worse. Sore feet can put a damper on your wedding, reception and even honeymoon.” The APMA offers some advice for choosing the most comfortable options in some popular wedding styles: Pumps A classic wedding shoe, bridal pumps come in a wide variety of styles, colors and heights. When choosing a pump, be aware that pointy shoes place pressure on the toes and can aggravate problems like hammertoes and bunions. Choose pumps with deep, wide toe boxes that give you plenty of room to wiggle your toes. Keep in mind lower heels are bet-

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Sunday, April 28, 2013


ter, especially if you’ll be in your wedding shoes for several hours. Ballet flats Flirty, feminine and fun, ballet flats can feel more comfortable than heels. But very flat shoes can actually be harmful to your arch and heel. Opt for a flat that has a bit of a heel, a thicker sole, and plenty of cushioning and support. Avoid flats that bend in half or easily twist. Kitten heels When it comes to good looks and foot-friendly design, kitten heels are the cat’s meow. Typically lower than one inch, kitten heels add a touch of height without placing undue pressure on the ball of the foot that higher heels can cause. They also tend to be a bit wider than the average heel, making them more stable and comfortable. Platforms and wedges Towering platforms and wedges provide height, style and endless options. But wearing these higher styles requires brides to take extra caution. Platforms and wedges may compromise your balance and stability, and very high shoes can lead to ankle rolls and falls. Look for lower platforms and wedges that feature secure ankle straps. Cork bottoms provide some shock absorption and traction.

Peep toes Popular among brides who want to show off their pretty pedicures, peep toes range from towering heels to functional flats. Regardless of heel height, peep toes may cause your toes to slip forward or overlap, or may even push nail edges into the skin to form an ingrown toenail. Avoid peep toes that are too tight, and be sure they are free of seams near the toe area, as seams place further pressure on toes. Sling backs Showing a flirty flash of heel, sling backs are dynamic and sexy - perfect for walking down

the aisle and kicking up your heels during the reception. Look for a sling back with a lower heel that will be more comfortable for extended wearing. Straps should be snug but not too tight to avoid chafing on the back of the heel. Too loose straps may cause the shoe to slip off your foot, so a proper strap fit is important. Whatever style you choose, some advice is universal: • Very high heels place pressure on your feet, shifting your entire body weight. If you plan to wear your heels throughout the entire ceremony and reception — likely more than two hours — consider choosing a heel of no more than two inches. Or, save the very high


heels for the ceremony and switch to a lower, more comfortable heel for afterward. • Brightly colored or patterned wedding shoes are in vogue now, and while color doesn’t affect comfort the material might. Materials that provide stability and stretch may be better for your feet. Avoid plastic, vinyl and other materials that don’t allow feet to breathe. • Shoes should have a flexible sole that allows toes to bend naturally when you walk and a rigid, cushioned heel counter to keep the foot in place inside the shoe. • Inserts are a great way to help cushion heels, arches and the balls of your feet. It’s easy to find inserts that work with virtually any style of wedding shoe. • When shopping for your wedding shoes, keep in mind that — like any shoe — they should be comfortable immediately. Never buy uncomfortable shoes thinking that you’ll “break them in.” And shop for your bridal shoes at the end of the day. Not only do most weddings take place later in the day, your feet swell to their largest in the evening. Buying your wedding shoes at that time of day will ensure you get the best fit. ♥


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16 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

Honeymoon encore: The big move in (BPT) - It may come as a surprise to young engaged couples, but the excitement of the wedding and honeymoon doesn’t end when it’s all over. In fact, after the honeymoon, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and plan the big move — the joining of two households. It’s a herculean task finding the perfect location with great schools, affordable taxes and good neighbors. But once you’ve signed on the dotted line for the home where you will begin your life as a couple — and maybe also raise your family when the time arrives — you’re ready to plan your big move. Many newlyweds face the chore of merging furniture, kitchen equipment and closet space from two households. To start your moving process off on the right foot, consider eliminating duplicate items and having a garage sale, or donating items, before beginning the packing process. It’s a great chance to upgrade household furnishings — especially if you received something new as a wedding gift.

Having each box labeled with contents will help prevent you and your friends from packing heavy books on top of your new fine china wedding gifts.

Then determine what size moving truck you’ll need. A good rule is to plan for 150 cubic feet of space for every fully furnished room. Many young couples moving from a small apartment or condo into a larger first home will find a 12- or 16-foot Penske rental truck more than adequate. Plan to reserve your truck at least two weeks in advance.

Penske Truck Rental offers rental discounts for AAA members to help young couples with savings. For help in making moving day go smoothly, use these tips from Penske. They’ve been in the do-it-yourself moving business for more than 40 years: • Still unpacking your wedding gifts? If space isn’t a concern, keep those wedding gifts in their original boxes, because the store packaging will help protect the items. But if space is tight in the rental truck, throw away the store packaging and carefully repack in your moving boxes — with plenty of padding to protect your new gifts. • Start early and group items together Get good, sturdy boxes of various sizes, and then fill them with items of similar use, size or design. Some traditional ways to group items are by item type (i.e. photo frames) or by contents of a room. Label each box with the room name, and the contents. Make sure you have plenty of packing bubbles or towels and cloths on hand to keep breakable items from being damaged in the move. • Save your muscles Ask friends to help you with carrying boxes. If something is heavy, enlist some help to prevent injury or strain on your muscles. • Loading the truck Load the largest items (i.e. bed, couch, dresser) into the truck first to ensure they will fit, and then start loading the heaviest boxes on the bottom and lighter boxes on top. Having each box labeled with contents will help prevent you and your friends from packing heavy books on top of your new fine china wedding gifts. Penske features an online Truck Wizard application to assist. When you cross the threshold of your new home the first time as a married couple, you’ll be surrounded by the excitement and energy of so many adventures to come in your future. Carefully unpack your moving truck, cherishing the memories of your personal belongings as you meld them to fit into your new home and life with your new spouse. ♥

Sunday, April 28, 2013



Money and marriage: Tips to achieve financial happiness Fights over finances are a leading cause of stress and divorce, yet a new survey indicates that while the average couple fights over money five times a year, they discuss finances rationally fewer than two times a month.

their combined finances. Just over one in five (21 percent) admit they sometimes hide their spending from their partner. Thirtyeight percent say they are either unaware or only partially aware of their mate's debts. Perhaps they feel that ignorance is bliss.

The survey conducted by TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation and LearnVest, found that couples today face three top concerns when it comes to their finances: Not having enough money to retire (27 percent), not having enough money to live as they wish (25 percent), and not having enough money to even live comfortably (24 percent).

More people are marrying later in life, so one or both partners may enter the union with a 401(k), IRA or other investment accounts. It's important to discuss long-term retirement savings goals, and understand how you both plan to manage these accounts. Websites like TD Ameritrade's Life 2.0 and TD Ameritrade's Retirement Planning Resource Center can help by offering access to free resources like retirement calculators and portfolio planners. ♥

Trust over money also emerged as a big issue. Forty percent of respondents do not completely trust their partner to manage

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18 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

Bridal trends transform grandma’s china from vintage to vogue (BPT) - New brides are transforming something old into something new. That’s according to the latest bridal tabletop trends. While in recent years brides have been registering for casual dinnerware, lately

industry experts are seeing brides returning to fine china. Sales indicate they’re opting for porcelain and bone china, which are more durable than stoneware because these mediums are less likely to chip.

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Sunday, April 28, 2013


White patterns continue to be strong bridal sellers, ranging in shades from pure white to ecru, with gold trim making a resurgence among millennial brides.

sentimental favorite for formal entertaining, or just as easily dress down your tableware for a casual evening with friends.”

But in an emerging trend, observers are finding vintage is vogue.

For example, Griffith says mixing in square salad plates with round shaped dinnerware creates art deco flair. Mixing different colored plates or glass can open up an entire new color palette.

“Brides are embracing heirloom patterns for a number of reasons,” says Keith Winkler, product marketing manager at Replacements, Ltd. “First of all, there’s a strong, emotional connection to those inherited pieces because it ties them to family and tradition. At the same time, vintage is huge throughout the fashion industry, and that’s impacting dinnerware trends. Brides are hanging onto Grandma’s china, but they’re also looking to give family treasures a more contemporary spin.” John Griffith oversees the visual merchandising team at Replacements, known as the world’s largest retailer of old and new china, crystal, silver and collectibles. He often hears from brides needing help transforming family treasures. “It doesn’t matter whether inherited dinnerware is decades old, patterns are timeless through the magic of mixing and matching,” says Griffith. “I suggest using your heirloom pattern as a starting point, then mixing in various colors, shapes and even other mediums such as glass or acrylics. By creating a sort of ‘retro remix,’ you can dress up your


He’s adamant; don’t be afraid to be bold and try something new. “I recently had a customer come in with an heirloom goblet she wanted to match,” he says. “We didn’t have any pieces in her pattern, so I instead zeroed in on a design element with the goblet, in this case the stem style on the glass. I added in four additional crystal patterns, all with a similar stem design. By matching that particular design element, we created a really elegant, contemporary look.”

Mixing in contemporary service and salad plates takes this heirloom pattern from vintage to vogue.

Griffith leads design seminars on creating trendy tables at the company’s retail store. Many of his insights appear on Replacements’ YouTube channel and Facebookpage at One challenge brides often encounter with heirloom pieces lies in the fact family members sometimes forget the name of the pat-

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tern. Griffith suggests taking advantage of Replacements’ free pattern identification service. Additional information is available on the company’s website, ♥


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20 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

Relax while planning your wedding with these financial and budgeting tips (BPT) - Planning and organizing a large and complex special event can quickly overwhelm a bride and groom-to-be, especially if the couple has no previous experience or training in large event organization. In addition to all the details of the invite list, the location for all activities for the big day and the special intimate details of wedding party gifts, getting to the big day without breaking the bank might seem impossible. With a few smart steps before, during and after the ceremony, you’ll ensure your bank account will remain as strong as your love for each other.

TIP 1: STRIVE TO COME IN UNDER-BUDGET Set a budget and stick to it — or better yet, come in below it. Start out the wedding-planning process with a set budget for all major expenses such as food, music, wedding attire, flowers and the cake. But don’t forget about

all the little expenses that can add up too. For example, tips for services that the DJ, drivers, hairstylist and bartenders provide can add up to hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Remembering all the details and giving yourself a little financial wiggle room should something be overlooked is a wise decision.

TIP 2: WEDDING INSURANCE EQUALS PEACE OF MIND Insurance for a wedding? It’s something many have not heard of until planning a wedding, but it should be a priority because it protects your investment should something unexpected occur. According to WedSafe Wedding Insurance, a leading insurance program dedicated exclusively to weddings, there are two types of wedding insurance to consider: First, cancellation/postponement insurance can offer financial reimbursement for unexpected events that force cancellation or post-

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Second, liability insurance can provide protection if an injury occurs or property is damaged and responsibility for the incident is placed on the host as legally liable. For example, someone slips on a spill and breaks their hip, or perhaps someone has a few too many

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lost deposits from no-show or bankrupt vendors. Real wedding mishaps can occur, and wedding insurance offers protection.

ponement, such as an illness, military deportation or sudden unemployment. It also brings peace of mind during economic uncertainty when many vendors suddenly go out of business. For example, it’s unfortunate but far from rare for a wedding venue or photographer to go out of business and not return the deposit to the now unhappy couple. This can amount to thousands of dollars. With cancellation/postponement insurance, the wedding host has financial protection against

Sunday, April 28, 2013


Festive, from page 13 Preheat oven to 325°F. Line mini muffin tins with cupcake liners. In large bowl, beat cake mix, water, oil and eggs with electric mixer on low speed about 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium and mix until smooth, about 2 minutes. Pour into prepared pans and bake until a toothpick inserted into center of cupcake comes out clean, 15 to 18 minutes. Cool in pans for 5 minutes then cool completely on wire rack. Mango Buttercream 2 large mangos (about 2 pounds), peeled, pitted and diced 2-1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter, room temperature 5 cups powdered sugar 2 tablespoons white sparkling sugar sprinkles (optional) Purée 1-1/2 diced mangos in food processor or blender until smooth, set aside (will yield about 3/4 cup). Reserve remaining diced mango for garnish. In large bowl, beat butter with electric mixer on medium speed, until smooth. Slowly add powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, mixing between each addition. Add 3/4 cup of mango purée. Increase speed to high and beat until incorporated, about 2 minutes. Transfer buttercream to a pastry bag or a large zip top bag fitted with a pastry tip. Top cooled cupcakes with buttercream. Top with 1 piece diced mango and sparkling sugar, if desired.

FROST CUPCAKES LIKE A PRO It’s easy to create these Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Mango Buttercream. With a few simple tricks, they’ll appear as though you selected them from a professional bakery. Just follow these simple steps from the kitchen pros: • Use a large, star-burst piping tip in a pastry bag or large zip top bag. • Set the bag over a tall glass or measuring cup, and fold the bag edges into a cuff over the rim of the glass. • Scoop frosting into the bag using a rubber spatula. Fill it about two-thirds full. • Take the bag out of the glass and twist the top closed. • Hold the bag just barely above the top of the cupcake at a 90 degree angle. • Squeeze the bag to pipe a spiral of icing, starting at the outer edge and working inward. • Stop squeezing and pull the tip straight up. Visit to get more tips, recipes and videos, and to join the community of home cooks and food lovers. ♥

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22 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

Engaged, from page 4 traveling from out of town. • Insure your engagement and wedding rings against loss, damage, theft or mysterious disappearance. According to a survey conducted by Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company, 44 percent of married women either don’t insure their engagement ring, or don’t know for certain whether their engagement and wedding rings are insured. For a free, no-obligation jewelry insurance quote, visit • Make sure your marriage license, travel documentation and insurance information are ready to go and stored in a safe place in advance of the wedding day. • Practice reciting your vows and speeches until you feel comfortable. • Wear your wedding heels around the house to “break them in.” Pack a back-up pair of flats to wear during the reception. • Remember to ask for help. Designate members of your family or close friends to specific assignments.

WEDDING DAY DETAILS • Provide bottled water for your wedding party. To ensure no one gets over-heated, hide water near your bridal party during the ceremony for emergencies.

• Choose meaningful gifts for your wedding party. Necklaces, earrings or bracelets are great for bridesmaids; cufflinks are perfect for groomsmen. • Create individual envelopes for tipping drivers, caterers, musicians, etc. Separate envelopes will help ensure you don’t forget anyone.

PLAN FOR WEATHER: In case of rain - Order a tent or choose a venue with indoor space for last-minute protection from the elements. Offer extra umbrellas to usher people from their vehicles to the venue. In case of heat - Place fans throughout the venue and provide plenty of water for guests. In case of cold - Space heaters can be placed throughout the space to warm up the room in advance of the event. • Over-estimate the amount of parking needed for guests.

FOLLOWING THE HONEYMOON • Open wedding gifts and keep an accurate list of each guest in correspondence with their gift. • Write thoughtful, personalized hand-written thank you cards. For more information about protecting your bridal jewelry, visit ♥

The Big Day Bridal Kit Supplies Bobby pins, elastic hair bands Hairbrush Hairspray Panty hose Nail file, nail polish, remover Baby powder Makeup Stain remover Tissues Sewing kit with scissors Ballet flats Pocket mirror Extra post-earring backs Static cling spray Antacid Pain reliever Bandages Deodorant Dental floss Eye drops Bottled water Breath mints Duct tape - for last-minute dress fix-ups and to adhere to the bottom of slippery dress shoes

Questions, from page 7 are covered in case of theft, fire, or natural disaster. You’ll also want to make sure your home insurance covers 100 percent of the cost to rebuild your home if needed. “Do your research,” says Smith. “Some insurance companies cap their coverage at a certain amount. That means you could find yourself substantially underinsured, even if you thought you were paying for so-called ‘replacement cost’ insurance.”

WHAT DO YOU NEED TO DO BEFORE PLUNGING INTO A REMODELING PROJECT? Even if you’re not purchasing a new home, two people in a house means you need more space, so you may be adding on to your existing home. This can mean workers doing potentially dangerous jobs in the home. Your strategy: When you hire a contractor, request a certificate of insurance to confirm their liability and workers’ compensation coverages. Review the certificate and your homeowners policy.


Relax, from page 20 When you get married, you may become part of a dualincome household. When this happens, you plan your future based on a new budget created by two incomes, which brings increased financial responsibility. Should something happen, surviving family members could struggle without the right level of protection. Your strategy: Make sure your spouse is protected if one income is lost. Universal life insurance provides insurance for your entire life and builds a cash value. Term life insurance provides affordable coverage for a set number of years. Some websites, including, offer online calculators to help you determine how much insurance you need. As you begin to build a nest egg, you have more assets to protect. A personal umbrella policy provides extra protection for you and your family against lawsuits arising from personal injury or property damage claims. While it’s important to plan for rain on your wedding day and to make sure everyone has a place card, it’s even more important to plan for what comes after the moment you say “I do.” Making the proper insurance and financial arrangements will be a load off your mind if something should arise. ♥

cocktails and gets into a car accident. Many venues today require that the host purchase coverage. For more information about wedding insurance and to get an instant quote, visit

TIP 3: GET ALL FEES IN WRITING Staying organized when planning a wedding can be complicated, but keeping track of all those long contracts can come in handy should there be discrepancies regarding extra fees come payment time. Didn’t know the reception site was charging you a cake-cutting fee? Reference your contracts and if there are any issues, you can address it with the vendor. Forgotten fees can accumulate fast, and by getting everything in writing and staying organized, you’ll be sure you don’t get burned.

TIP 4: PLAN AHEAD AND PAY BILLS ON TIME Once your big day arrives, all your bills should be paid in full. Check contracts and be sure to understand payment agreements so that you don’t get hit with any late fees. For many couples, credit cards will be used to streamline the payment process, but don’t forget when your monthly payment is due and strive to pay it in full. This is especially important for couples leaving for extended periods of time for a honeymoon — you’d hate to come back to a pile of late fees because you didn’t plan ahead on payments that may be due when you’re gone. ♥

Sunday, April 28, 2013



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24 WEDDINGS - Spring

The Westerly Sun

PRICE LIST McQuade’s Marketplace offers quality cakes and specialty desserts. Our moist golden, chocolate or marble cakes can be filled with a variety of fruit, pastry crème or mousse to create a custom dessert sure to please everyone. Red velvet or carrot with raisins and walnuts are also available in sheet cakes to serve with either butter cream or traditional cream cheese frosting.

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2013 Spring Weddings  

Published by Sun Publishing Co.

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