I had such a fun time at my bachelorette party. It started with a mani-pedi with my then soon-to-be sister-in-law and my mom.

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My bridesmaids wore purple shirts (our wedding color) that said “Bride’s Besties” on them, and I wore a white shirt with “Future Mrs. Petty” on it in gold glitter lettering (our wedding accent color).

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First, we went on a brunch bay cruise in San Francisco with bottomless mimosas, a DJ, delicious food, and even some special complimentary pink drinks to celebrate the occasion! My hashtag was #Amberlee’sLastSailBeforeTheVeil – too cute! We had an amazing view of the bay and the bridge, and got some fun photos.

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After the cruise, we walked down the pier and took some more fun photos (my sister-in-law has really come in handy with her camera and photography skills)

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Then we came across a fire truck outside of the station. What started as a quick question to the fireman sitting on the bench (we just wanted to take a photo on the truck) turned into an hour with a bunch of firemen! It was hilarious, they took us in and gave us a tour, showed us (and had us get on) both fire boats (not the easiest thing in the world), cracked jokes about who was going to be the biggest trouble maker that night, and then – get this – they fed us freshly baked banana nutella bread. It was delicious. We ducked out before they made us get into their uniforms but we did get some great pictures and I think they really enjoyed the company.

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After the firehouse, we stopped for a quick drink.

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Then headed to meet up with the boys for a group dinner at Yard House (Cody had his bachelor party on the same day – don’t worry, that post is coming soon).

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After dinner each party headed to the hotel where we had separate rooms – my mom had helped decorate mine earlier, and the girls had all written reasons why they loved me and put it in a heart shape on the bathroom mirror – so sweet!

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I ended up with a migraine, and one of the other girls ended up not feeling too well at the end of the night either, so we really just relaxed and played a game and pretty much passed out from all of the walking and boat hopping. My bridesmaids and especially my Matron of Honor, my sister-in-law did an amazing job planning a fun but chill day and I honestly couldn’t have asked for anything better than to be surrounded by my best friends, drinks, and the ocean.

Tell me what you did for your bachelorette party in the comments below!!

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Cody and I are taking a mini vacation a couple of days to the beach this weekend with my family and that means wearing a bathing suit and hopefully relaxing by the water. Unfortunately, my summer workout plans have not gone accordingly…as in I’ve barely done any working out at all aside from a hike or two and a lot of yin yoga. We have both been busy at work, running around to different commitments, spending time with family, and trying to eat healthy, but probably drinking a bit more alcohol than our guts would approve of.

But there are a few things that I’ve been able to stick to pretty closely, and will be abiding by all week to help beat any extra bloat before the beach.

  1. Celery juice
    I heard about the many major benefits of celery juice through the wellness grapevine, tracing back to the Medical Medium. Not only does drinking 16oz of celery juice every morning really help clear out my system, detox my body, and noticeably improve my gut health – which in turn has been helping to chase away my stomach bloat – but there are so many other reasons to give this a try. You can read about how amazing celery juice is for you and your body here.IMG_1453.jpg
  2. Warm lemon water (& sometimes adding in some ginger or ginger tea)
    Lemon water is a natural diuretic, assisting with digestion, cleansing, and chasing away bloat. I sneak in some lemon juice anywhere I can – in water, dressings, hummus or guacamole recipes, etc. As for the ginger, it’s “a particularly effective carminative, helping to alleviate gas, bloating and cramps, according to James A. Duke, author of “The Green Pharmacy Guide to Healing Foods.””
  3. Sipping kombucha or a taking a good probiotic
    If you’re sensing a gut health theme by now then you’re completely right. A healthy functioning gut is key to a flat tummy and beating that pesky bloat. “Probiotics are live bacteria or yeasts found in fermented foods or supplements that, when consumed, take residence in the gut and improve health.” Kombucha is delicious and has built-in probiotics, but these bubbly drinks can also get expensive. Sometimes I opt for a little bouch, but lately to save some money I bought some good quality probiotic pills that I keep in the fridge and take daily.IMG_1451.jpg
  4. Drink lots of water
    I find that at first, of course, I tend to gain a bit of water weight and bloat, but after a week or so of drinking around 64oz or more of water a day my body evens out and my system clears, giving me more energy and a flatter tummy. It can be hard to remember to keep drinking water throughout the day, but once you get into the groove it becomes second nature. I opt for room temperature or warm water because I find that it’s better for my body and my gut.
  5. Limiting dairy products
    As much as I love cheese, dairy just does not agree with my gut, causing discomfort and major bloat. Dairy products are highly inflammatory, so I’ve cut out many dairy products (except when I really need nachos or a cheese and wine combo of course). But when prepping for a beach trip or big event I steer clear of all dairy products at least a week in advance and I find it to be very effective.

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I hope you found some of these tips helpful! I’d love to hear what you do to beat bloat or prep for a beach vacation in the comments below!

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For our rehearsal dinner invitations, we wanted something a little more playful since everything up to this point had been so elegant and themed. My mom actually found the cutest invitations – the Best Tomorrow Rehearsal Dinner Gatefold Invitation from PaperSTYLE. We loved them and we decided to use cute and funny photos to mix it up.

In the photo below, there are three invitations out so you can see all sides – the top is the front of the invite that opens up into the middle that you see there, and then the bottom is the back of the invitation.

We were lucky enough to find photos of both of us, sitting in pretty much the same position at around the same age (3-4ish) and used those on either side of the open fold. Then for the back we chose one of our favorite funny photos from a couple of years ago at one of our favorite restaurants go to when we are on vacation (see bottom photo).

They turned out super cute and we really liked the change of pace to lighten the mood and set the tone for a fun evening after our rehearsal – look forward to a post on the rehearsal and the dinner coming soon!

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Welcome to another Wedding Series post! This one is pretty special.

I thought long and hard about these traditional things a bride is supposed to have on her wedding day. I knew I needed something of my grandma’s, I knew I wanted a crystal by my side, and that I wanted to include my mom somehow. Once I narrowed it down, between my mom and I we checked my something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue off of the list pretty quickly.

My something old was my grandmother’s opal ring. We were extremely close when she was alive and to be able to wear something of hers on the biggest day of my life so far meant the world to me. I even wore it when I was in my cousin’s wedding just recently! Something about that ring makes me feel like I have a little piece of her with me, even though I know she’s always with me regardless.

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My something new was my wedding dress, of course.

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My something borrowed, is a pretty funny story.  I actually ended up with two something borroweds! (Extra good luck?) I wanted to wear something of my mother’s too, but we couldn’t think of something that would go with the dress and the vibe, and I was already wearing my grandmother’s ring and had pearl earrings picked out to match my necklace and dress. So a couple of months before my wedding I got my ears pierced a second time so that I could wear my mom’s diamond earrings that my dad had given to her in those new holes.

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THEN, my necklace broke at the last minute as I was putting it on, I (completely out of character for me) was calm and said the dress didn’t need a necklace, and proceeded to take our wedding photos without one. But then right as we were finishing up our photos, my Aunt Lisa came and found us and she just happened to be wearing a pearl necklace that matched my dress perfectly! She had heard about my necklace breaking and offered it to me, so I wore that for the ceremony and the rest of the evening.

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My something blue is pretty special as well. Thanks to Penny at The Ruby Dragon in Morro Bay, I was able to get my hands on a heart-shaped Amazonite pendant from Brazil, blessed by John of God himself (if you’re into crystals and spirituality you’ll probably know who that is and how special that was to be able to get). When I went to the Ruby Dragon and told Penny I was looking for my something blue (I would settle for blue-ish, any shade really) and I really wanted it to be a crystal that would bring the right vibe of love and calmness to my wedding day, she suggested Amazonite. Among being know as the “hope stone” and being strongly connected to the heart chakra, “Amazonite powers enhance romantic relationships with their ability to facilitate compassionate, rational thinking, in keeping with amazonite meaning. The pale green mineral rock can facilitate the establishment of a new romantic relationship. Amazonite also strengthens marriages with all of the amazonite benefits at the heart of amazonite meaning.”

My mom sewed it underneath and between all of the layers of my dress so that it was with me for the day. To our surprise, when we went to undo the pendant later on, it was gone. Somewhere between the photos, the vows, and the dancing, that little stone had done its job and is forever lost among the vines of Murrieta’s Well.

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Everything worked out as it should have and I felt so lucky to have such special things with me on my wedding day.

If you’re married, did you follow this tradition? If so, what did you have as your something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue? I’d love to hear your special stories in the comments below!

Professional Photography: Karey at Hazy Lane Studios

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