Make Love A Verb // STAYING IN LOVE Part 1

Written with love by Pastor Dave Page

It’s so easy to fall in love, wouldn’t you agree? It’s been said, “The only requirement to fall in love is a pulse.” It’s never been easier to fall in love and I believe it’s never been more difficult to stay in love. 

In the movie Juno, the main character (Juno MacGuff) asks her dad, "I need to know that it's possible for two people to stay happy together forever?” What a great question. Why is it so hard to stay in love?

Many of us have not seen a healthy marriage relationship modeled to us. We live in a nation where over 50 percent of couples get a divorce and don’t go the distance. Many of those who do go the distance are surviving but not thriving. So how can couples stay in love and develop marathon marriages that go the distance?

This is the first part of a four-part post. Here is the first principle for staying in love:

MAKE LOVE A VERB.

We treat love like a noun. It's an experience that happened. A moment. A thing. For many of us, we focus on the external qualities of love and ignore the internal. We talk about falling in love and falling out of love like gravity has something do with it. 

In a popular wedding reading, we see a different side of love - a new definition of love.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”[1]

In this reading, we see that love is a verb, an action, not just emotion. We see what love does and does not do. Marriage isn’t just about choosing the right person; it’s about becoming the right person, the type of person who loves the other person unconditionally. 

It’s easy to love somebody who loves you, isn’t it? But real love acts and does the loving thing when your spouse doesn’t deserve it, when they don’t respond, or when you don’t feel it. Actually, acting in love when you don’t feel it is the highest form of love. I call it graduate level love, when you act loving toward a person who does not respond the same way.

Have you discovered that it’s easier to act your way into a feeling than it is to feel your way into an action? What do you do when you’ve lost those loving feelings? How do you rekindle the feeling of love again?

The good news is you can act your way into a feeling. You may say, “I don’t feel like acting loving toward my spouse.” It doesn’t matter. If you start acting in love, the feelings will follow. Why? Because feelings follow behavior

I confess, there was a time that I thought I’d married the wrong person. It’s been said, “Opposites attract and then opposites attack.” That certainly was true in our case. I was madly in love with my wife when we got married but after a few years felt she was driving me crazy. I wasn’t feeling the love. I figured I had three choices: 1) Divorce. 2) Stay together and live separate lives. 3) Humble myself and get help. I chose the last option. I went to counseling myself and eventually we both went to counseling. 

A funny thing happened. As I begin doing loving acts toward her, I began to fall in love with her all over again. I’m so glad we didn’t divorce. Today my wife is my best friend and I can’t imagine life without her. Make love a verb and stay together.

[1] 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Pastor Dave Page - Make Love A Verb // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner

Walk Me Down the Aisle

Gone are the days where traditions are followed to a tee. And while many traditions still remain in the wedding world (which I love!), these traditions aren't always used and even sometimes, are just not possible for some brides.

Walk Me Down the Aisle // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner

And one tradition that greatly various from wedding to wedding, is the walk down the aisle - that walk down the aisle with the bride and...

Who?

Who will be walking you down the aisle?

While I love that my dad got to walk me down the aisle and I wouldn't have it any other way, not every bride has a dad or a dad who is significant in her life.

But don't worry, there are plenty of alternatives to having your dad walk you down the aisle and none is better than the other. The person (or people) you choose to give you to your future-husband at the end of that aisle, should have a positive significant influence your life, first and foremost. And here are some ideas to get those wheels spinning as you plan out the most important half hour of your life.


Mom AND Dad

Many brides choose to have both their mom and dad walk them down the aisle together. Whether your parents are divorced or still happily married, this is a fantastic option to allow your mom to have a bigger part in your ceremony.

Dad is watching from above

If your dad was influential in your life but is unable to be part of your day, then you can choose another family member or even friend in your life to walk you down the aisle. You can choose a brother, a aunt or uncle, and grandparent or even a family friend. And to make sure that your daddy is still there walking with you in spirit, one of my FAVORITE traditions is attaching a small locket photo of him to your bouquet, or using one of his ties as the wrap on your bouquet.

Just me, myself, and I

Another processional idea that is not very common, is the bride walking down the aisle without anyone else. While I haven't seen it very often, it is more commonly used in second marriages or older couples. However, I don't recommend it. The person standing by your side is 1) going to be there to calm you and breathe with you, 2) will ensure you walk slowly so that your photographers have plenty of opportunities to snap the perfect shot and 3) will catch you if you fall. And yes, I've seen in happen...twice!

Walk Me Down the Aisle // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner

At the end of the aisle, your officiant will typically ask the question, " Who gives this woman to be with this man?" And that significant role model will be the one to hand you off to your new husband. So whoever you choose, choose for you. Choose the person who is a positive influence in your life, whether family by blood or not.

Maximizing Your Workout Results

Written with love, by Kim Riegel

Wouldn't it be nice to have a trainer come to your house five days a week?  For most people that is not possible. However, I want to show you ways that you can maximize your workout results and hold yourself accountable for your workouts so you can look amazing on your wedding day!

I like to get most of my clients on some kind of a heart rate monitor or fitness tracking device. While I am not here to advertise or sway you towards a specific fitness apparatus, by having one that can show your daily steps, heart rate or calories burned is one way of holding yourself accountable for your workouts.

Count those steps!

First, a device that can count your daily steps, some sort of pedometer, will give you a realistic look at how active you are on a daily basis. Roughly, people should move about 10,000 steps a day or the equivalent of 5 miles give or take. Some people would be surprised that they don't move anywhere near that on a daily basis. Others may easily achieve that in a morning run. Getting up every day and moving and burning calories and getting your steps in is a valuable way to hold yourself accountable and to make sure you are getting your exercise in. It may make you realize that you should walk more during the day, take the stairs or even get out various times throughout the day to meet your steps goal. All of this can make a big difference towards your fitness, health and bridal goals and something to take ownership of on your own.

Monitoring Heart Rate

The second reason to use a heart rate monitor/device is to make sure you're staying within your appropriate heart rate ranges during your workouts to maximize your results. If you're putting in the time for exercise, why not make sure you are getting the most out of it? I have found in many cases people either exercise too light and don't get their heart rate up high enough or exercise too high, almost anaerobically, and may feel nauseous or dizzy. Therefore, long breaks are needed to recover and bring the heart rate back down which can make workouts inefficient.

What I recommend is to find a realistic exercise range and to stick within the range the best that you can throughout the workout.  A formula to find your heart rate range is to take the number 220 minus your age multiplied by the percentages of how high and low you want to work out.

For example, a 20-year-old would end up being 220-20 = 200. 200 would be the working number. Take that number and multiply it by a reasonable lower and upper range to get the beats per minute (BPM) that your heart rate should stay between. On the low end, you can take 200 x 65% or times .65 and get 130 BPM's. On the upper range you could aim for 80% or 200×.80 equals 160.  So for this particular person wearing a heart rate device they will try to keep their workouts between 130 to 160 BPM. The formula is not always perfect and can be slightly adjusted based on the persons already existing fitness level.

Burning Fat

Another question I get is if a person should work out lighter to burn more fat?  If anyone has seen a cardio machine they will know that some cardio machines tell you to work out at a lighter intensity to burn fat and work out harder to burn carbohydrates. Wouldn't it be great to hardly work out and lose all the fat you would like? Unfortunately that is only partially correct. Initially, working out at a lower intensity will first utilize fat stores for energy. Once your heart rate begins to increase and your body has a specific heart rate, it will then turn to carbohydrates for the majority of the energy stores to burn for exercise.

Two important things to keep in mind when you decide how you want to exercise:

1) The higher your heart rate is the more calories per minute you will burn overall. So for 10 minutes of running you will burn nearly twice as many calories per minute than 10 minutes of walking where you were trying to burn fat. Lower heart rates burn less calories no matter what energy stores are being utilized.

2) Ultimately when it comes to exercise and eating, it is calories in versus calories out. So while having light exercise days may be good to try to burn fat for the workout, your overall calorie loss that day will be lower so you will have to adjust your eating accordingly.

What I recommend is to train in different intensities on different days. If you decide to have a lower intensity day you will need to exercise longer than you would on a higher intensity day to try and burn the equivalent amount of calories. It is good occasionally to have longer slower workouts which will produce cardiovascular results too. High intensity interval training workouts are great to tap into burning carbohydrates and to burn a lot of calories. Regular interval training is really good for bringing your heart rate up and dropping it back down and you can sustain a longer work out that way too.

By investing in some sort of a fitness device and using these tips you will be sure to get the maximum results and have the bridal body you want on your special day!

Sponsored Post: Andrea's for the Bride // Sister of Honor

When this amazing location was offered to Bridal Store owner Samantha Popa, she could not resist the temptation for a photoshoot. Falcon View Bel Air is a home so beautiful and with even more beautiful owners, Steve and Donna Antebi. 

The Sister of Honor photoshoot was a mix of Beverly Hills meets Alice and Wonderland. A Sister of Honor has the roles of a Maid of Honor, but a more important title. Because for those of us who have sisters or know them, there is just nothing like the relationship between family, and especially sisters. The designs by Andrea’s For the Bride come in a variety of colors for Brides who want their bridal parties in amazing dresses made just for them. 

We began the shoot with our rehearsal dinner looks - our bride staring at her beautiful ring on the couch with her amazing detachable dace bow skirt and her sister inside looking sexy and sedative in black and silver high low knock out dress. 

Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner
Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner
Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner

We stepped outside by the waterfall for our destination weddings look which was filled with gorgeous light fabrics and beautiful embellished details. These slit dresses are just perfect for a beach wedding. The bride took more of a boho chic look outside by the pool in a strapless empire waist flowing dress with a Something Treasured headpiece to complete the look.

Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner
Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner

Our glam shot of the stairway showing the glamorous see through silver and white lace train simply takes our breath away. 

Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner
Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner

We shot the short veil outside by the infinity pool surrounded by the hills in the background, capturing the essence of a modest bride awaiting her unveiling. 

Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner

Finally, the girls entered their fairytale land equipped with a mini mansion that belongs in a movie.

Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner
Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner

The final look required something special - a bouquet to fit in a world of wonderland with pink dresses and white lace. So stylist Samantha had Zina of The Four Seasons Flowers and Designs on Sunset Blvd, hand die Sun Flowers. They were the perfect touch to add to these beautiful strapless A line customized spring bridal fashions.

Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner
Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner
Andrea's For the Bride - Sister of Honor // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner

Photography: The Rose Weddings // Dress Designer: Madeleine Fig


Andrea's for the Bride Logo // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog +Southern California Wedding Planner

Halloween Wedding Inspiration

With Halloween just around the corner, we've decided to share some Halloween-inspired wedding fun! Whether your wedding is on the 31st or somewhere around it, there are a ton of great ways o incorporate the holiday into your planning. Contrary to popular belief, colors other than orange and black can be used while still pulling together this ghoulish theme in a modern way. Skulls, pumpkins, and candy are the perfect items to decorate your venue and they are sure to impress your guests!

Whether you want an all-out Halloween bash, or simply a few pieces here and there to remind you of the holiday, there are thousands of ways to plan a spectacular evening!

Wedding Day Checklist

Your wedding day is all about two things:

1. first and foremost, marrying the love of your life and

2. having fun!

And you all know that I would HIGHLY recommend a wedding coordinator for at least the day of your wedding so that you can just sit back, relax, and not have to worry about the details.

So for all of my brides out there who have followed that advice, here is a checklist for you.

Short, simple, and easy.

You shouldn't have to worry about remembering the favors or the decor - that should already be in the hands of your coordinator BEFORE the wedding day. Personally, I take all items from my brides at the rehearsal so that from then on, it is all about fun and everything is out of their hands...literally.

And if possible, even some of the items on this list can be given to your planner or a bridesmaid so that there is nothing but the last two items on this list. But that, of course, is up to you!

But whatever you do, make sure that your wedding day checklist is no longer than this list.

The shorter, the better.

Have fun, make memories, and enjoy this once in a lifetime experience. You only get this day once, so make the most of the seven hours that you have...with an ear to ear smile even if (and when) something doesn't go exactly as planned!

Wedding Day Checklist.png

Bride-to-Be Band Basics

Written with love, by Rebecca Fisher

Hello Ms. Bride-to-be!

How's that bridal prep/training coming along? I'm thrilled to announce that I am officially Mrs. Fisher as of a week ago! Woohoo! We are off packing for the start of our honeymoon adventure of a lifetime! But before I step on that plane, I wanted to check in and share some quick tips to keeping tight, as you get closer to your wedding date and start indulging in those celebrations you so deserve!

Time will rapidly speed up, if it hasn't already, so if you don't have a moment to hit the gym, do not worry! Pick up a resistance band or two! You can find them at Marshall's, TJ Maxx or any sporting goods store. These inexpensive rubber bands will be a great item to take with you on your honeymoon or for any time that you need a portable gym! And if you already have some resistance bands stuffed away in your closet somewhere, be sure to check them out prior to using. Worn out bands can cause injuries.

I love that these bands are highly effective in body sculpting without the use of dumbbells. Research has found that "you get the same muscle activation with elastic resistance as you do with free weights." (Phil Page, PhD, CSCS, Director of Research and Education for Theraband and author of "Strength Band Training.")

These bands are really useful in mimicking our natural range of movement (how you move in daily life), which is unique to exercise resistance bands compared to free weights.

Give these bands a try to maximize your training time.

Cardiovascular Reps

Simple try 2-3 sets with 10-15 reps of each exercise. Or combine the below exercised in a rapid-paced circuit to achieve a cardiovascular AND musculoskeletal workout, all in one! Just perform each exercise at a rapid pace for 1/2 minute each, with 10 seconds of rest in between.


Exercises

1. Resistance Band Squat

This exercise works your glutes and quads.

Stand with your feet at hip distance apart. With the band beneath your feet and holding each end of the band, bend your elbows, holding them into the sides of your body and raising the ends of the bands in front of your shoulders.

Lower into a squat, bringing your thighs parallel to the floor. Keep your knees behind your toes, as if you are sitting down on a chair.

Next, rise, up slowly and lift your right leg to the side, pressing against the band. Place your foot back down and repeat. Switch legs.

2. Donkey Kick Backs

This one is my favorite!

Tie the ends of the band together to make a circle and loop it around your knees. Kneel on the floor and place your hands on the floor beneath your shoulders. Keep your head aligned with your spine.

Lift your right knee, keeping your foot prone, with the heel pushing flat into the sky. Raise your knee until it is in a straight line with your hip and squeeze your glutes.

Lower your knee and repeat. Switch knees after your set is complete.

3. Push Ups with the Band

Place your body in a push-up position with your hands beneath your shoulders. Place the band across the wide part of your back with each end under each hand. The band should be stretched but not uncomfortable. Do not sag your lower back, and keep your head in a neutral position. Opt out of the band and work on push-ups first before using the band, if necessary.

Tighten your abs and glutes as you bend your arms and lower your body down to the floor. Stop before you touch the ground and press through your hand to extend back to the starting position.

Band Resistance Training // The Overwhelmed Bride Wedding Blog + Southern California Wedding Planner

Remember, there are so many great resources to find more band exercises. Use YouTube or Instagram for more videos and tips on using resistance bands in creative ways, in order to mix up your workouts! And make that time count!