Eternal Love

Hello there!

Since today is Valentine’s day, I thought I would share a little love-filled image to brighten your computer screen, smartphone, or tablet. Here ya go.

If you’re anything like me, you probably let out a giant “awwww” after looking at these two couples. While the couples are so different in age, setting, and color palette preferences, one thing is the same- love. While the bride and groom on the top just got married (see the Style Me Pretty album here), the radiant couple on the bottom has been married for 63 years (read about their story here).

63 years…wow. I’ve only been on this earth a mere 18 years; it’s ridiculously hard to fathom being alive for that many years, let alone spending it with someone who means the world to you. Seeing the elderly couple so madly in love, this many years later, made my heart swell up with happiness.

This is love. It’s young and innocent and the butterflies you get on your wedding day, like the couple on the top. But it’s also about living out life and growing old together, like the couple on the bottom. Love is real. Love is alive. Love is eternal. How do I know this? Because our God is love and made love.

“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.”- 1 John 4:8

“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.” -1 John 4:16

Friends, this is real. God loves us so much that He not only gave His one and only Son to die for us, but he created us to be wired with love too. It runs through our veins, it keeps our heart beating. Love is our family, our friends, and those who matter. Love is your creative talents, your God-given gifts, and your passion to make a difference.

Valentine’s Day may celebrate love, but I think love can and should be celebrated everyday. Praise Him for love, show others how much you love them, and use your talents to spread love to the world. It may sound cheesy, but the truth is that with God all things are possible. And since we talked up above how God is love, that means with love anything is possible. A difficult relationship, that crazy-cool-terrifying idea you have in the back of your head, a difficult week ahead, tests, exams, work… whatever it is, I reassure that it is possible! Love is so cool. It builds us up, comforts us, and makes us feel special.

So, if you’re feeling lonely this Valentine’s day, I urge you to reevaluate your definition of love. While love is a relationship or marriage (if you’re waiting on that like I am, remain patient! Love is worth the wait), it is not limited to a husband and wife bond. Love is a way we should life live. It’s certainly the way Jesus lived out life on earth. Demonstrating love to others, to our work, to our surroundings, and even too ourselves (YES- you are so lovable even when you don’t realize it) is a crucial ingredient to living life the way God intends us to.

We’ve established the powerful truth that God = Love. And since God and His Kingdom are eternal, that means that love is eternal too. Just like the elderly couple’s love and the newlyweds new journey into life together, the message remains the same: love lasts forever. 


Since it’s important to love, I want to end this post with 5 things I’m loving recently:

1. My new internship! I will serving as an intern for Jen Rios Weddings this spring and I am SO excited! More to come on this soon… the position officially starts in one week and I can’t wait to get started.

2. Bethel Music’s new album, We Will Not be Shaken. This album is too wonderful to describe in words. I recommend you download it on iTunes asap to start enjoying it. My personal favorites include “Ever Be” and “You Don’t Miss a Thing”.

3. My Her Campus progress! To keep it brief, I am in the process of becoming a Campus Correspondent for Her Campus, an online magazine for college women. I have advanced to Round 3 of the application process and am feeling so thankful to see hard work pay off 🙂

4. My family! I get to see my fam in less than one week and I can’t wait.

5. Books. Two life-changing books have truly re-ignited a fire in my heart. I’m almost done with them and recommend them to anyone. The first is Love Does by Bob Goff and the second is Make it Happen: Surrender Your Fear. Take the Leap. Live on Purpose by Lara Casey.


I hope you have a wonderful weekend! Take some time this Valentine’s Day to show others how much you love them. Always remember that you are loved, God is love, and that love isn’t going anywhere. It’s eternal. Happy Valentine’s Day!

xo- Allison

Fort Worth Bridal Show Review

Hello there!

This past weekend I took a break from homework and took a step into some new territory- bridal shows! I attended the Fort Worth Bridal Show on Sunday, February 1 in downtown Fort Worth. The event was put on by Bridal Shows Inc and was located at the Fort Worth Convention Center. I naturally wouldn’t be my wedding-obsessed self without spending three hours at the show, so I had fun and learned a lot along the way. Here is a recap of the wedding-filled day!

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Why did I attend a bridal show?

Because I love weddings, obviously! Of course I am not a bride-to-be (yet!), but I still wanted to take a step outside of my comfort zone to check out the event. Since I am so passionate about the wedding industry, I thought it would be fun, inspiring, and educational. And it was all that and more- yay!

I also knew that bridal shows would be flooded with wedding trends, gowns, and vendors that I could learn more about (and later obsess over online, like one of my favorites from the day, George Street Photo and Video). Pretty much, I went to have a fun afternoon and surround myself with brides, vendors, and all things wedding related.

Who did you say you were?

I wanted to go in being 100% honest… meaning as tempting as it was to pretend to be engaged to some mystery guy, I was myself and admitted to anyone who asked that I was solely attending the show for fun since I hoped to work in the wedding industry.

I had no issues with this until I was summoned into a tuxedo booth. I purposely didn’t approach the booth on my own since I had no need/interest in investigating tuxedo rentals at this point in life. But, the saleswoman pulled me and I was stuck. I told her my line- I wasn’t engaged and I was just here for fun. Well, she didn’t seem to understand. So there I was, filling out forms for a tuxedo discount code for a wedding date “in the near future” because I felt bad to leave the saleswoman. I left the booth holding back laughter and soaking in just how obsessed I am with weddings… you gotta do what you love, even if it means getting roped into tuxedo booths!

What was the bridal show like?

Since this was my first show, I had no idea what to expect. Essentially, you walk into a large convention center room lined with tables of vendors who are separated into booths. The vendors all customize their booths to express their services and styles. I unfortunately couldn’t take photos inside the show, but I will you tell you some booths were very cute (think white picket fences, colorful tables, and large photo boards).

Once you entered, attendees had the freedom to visit as many booths as they chose. I did a few laps around the venue to make sure I at least saw every booth, even if I didn’t chat with the vendors.

Vendors at this show included: wedding venue locations, caterers, bakeries (hello free cake samples!), planners, photographers, DJs/bands, tuxedo and men’s wear stations, and luxury car services.

Brides spent long periods of time at various booths, chatting about prices and potential dates open for availability. In fact, almost every time I approached a booth I would get asked, “Do you have a date yet?” Of course, I would say no and explain why I was there. But, I learned that vendors bring their calendars and hope brides do too! Vendors are not only there to publicize themselves, but to perhaps secure a deal on sight. So if you do visit a bridal show in the future, I recommend bringing your calendar (and maybe a checkbook!) to be efficient with your time.

Towards the end, there was a short fashion show that showcased 8 gowns from a bridal boutique.

How much did it cost?

My ticket cost $10, which I bought online via Bridal Shows Inc. I’m sure very high-end bridal shows are more expensive, but I would say this is an average price for your standard bridal show.

What was your favorite part of the show?

My favorite part of the bridal show was chatting with photographer Ashley Rains, who owns and photographs for her company AR Photography. As I explained that I was solely there because I loved the wedding industry, we got to chatting about how she started her company. I learned that Ashley had graduated from college two years ago and started her business immediately after graduation… and was making good money! Her mom was there with her and reassured me she was able to provide for herself and business was steady.

Speaking with Ashley made me excited and motivated to follow my passions. Her story inspired me to never give up on my dreams of starting my own company shortly after college.

Another highlight was stopping by the Brides of North Texas booth. Brides of North Texas is a magazine that covers wedding trends and real-weddings in the Dallas area. I was blown away by the magazine and will definitely be a devoted reader to their brand from now on.

Are bridal shows necessary in the wedding planning process?

Of course not! Not every vendor in your area will be at the show. In fact, a lot of my favorite Texas vendors I’ve found online were not present. But, bridal shows are a great place to start. For brides-to-be, you can great ideas for what you want at your wedding. And for businesses new to the wedding world, it’s a great place to get some exposure.


In conclusion, I highly recommend bridal shows for anyone- engaged or not! Go to explore, have fun, or prepare for your own wedding. Be honest, be yourself, and most importantly don’t get roped into a tuxedo discount booth.

Have a fabulous day!

xo- Allison

Hayley’s Wedding!

Hello there!!

The post is finally here where I get to share photos and details from my cousin Hayley’s wedding- yay!!

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Get ready for a whole lot of gorgeous photos to indulge in. But first, let me tell you about the details.

The Couple: Hayley and Brandon

Wedding Date: January 3rd, 2015

Ceremony Venue: All Souls’ Episcopal Church, Oklahoma City

Reception Venue: Oklahoma City Golf and Country Club 

Rehearsal Dinner location/ lodging: The Skirvin Hotel

Number of Guests: 325

Photographer: Josh McCullock

Wedding Planner: Judy Lehmbeck

Flowers: Trochta’s Flowers

Dress: Martina Liana, style 527 (the belt was sewn on separately)

Food: Various food stations around the ballroom, inducing pasta, comfort food, and a carving station.


First things first, Rehearsal Dinner. Before the big day, close family and friends all gathered at the hotel for an intimate dinner and celebration (a dance party even broke out!). Here are some photo highlights from the Rehearsal Dinner.

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Top left: My mom, brother, myself, and Hayley. Top right: The cousins all pose for our famous photo position- pointing! I love how the photographer captured my dad and aunt taking pictures of the funny moment.

Bottom left: The bridesmaids and the beautiful bride! Bottom right: Hayley and I!


Rise and shine- it’s Wedding Day!! The girls of the family started the day off at 10am, getting hair and makeup done and enjoying time with the bride. Here are some photo highlights!

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Top left: Hayley getting finishing touches on her makeup. Top right: Hayley reading the scrapbook from all of us bridesmaids!

Middle left: Hayley opening her scrapbook and monogram necklace. Middle right: Bridesmaids and the lovely bride!

Bottom left: The girls bring it in for a group hug before Hayley headed out to greet her man for the First Look! Bottom right: Hayley showing off the monogram necklace with her new initials!


Meanwhile, Brandon was getting ready!

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Right before Hayley went to meet him, the Matron-of-Honor, Ashley, and I adjusted Hayley’s dress one last time! Can we just appreciate the dress for one second?  Its’s out of this world!

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My mom and I got some time with the dress too as we helped the photographer display the dress for Pinterest worthy photos.

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First Look time!! Check out this awesome couple seeing each other for the first time.

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Ceremony time! It was a traditional Episcopalian service, with traditional vows, the “tying of the knot”, and even communion for the bride and groom. Here are some highlights.

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After the vows were exchanged, it was back to the country club to celebrate! Here are some images from the Reception.

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The fabulous night concluded with a rose petal toss exit, as the bride and groom set off for a life of happiness (and a killer honeymoon in Turks and Caicos!).

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I hope this beautiful wedding was inspiring and day-brightening! This wedding is one for the books 🙂 Congratulations Hayley and Brandon!

xo- Allison


Thanks so much for reading about Hayley and Brandon’s wedding! To read more details about my experience as Maid of Honor, click here. To read all posts pertaining to Hayley’s wedding, click here.

All photos on this post are courtesy of Josh McCullock.

I Knew

Hello there!

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I just got back from my cousin’s wedding in Oklahoma- SO much fun! It was amazing to be with family, to support my cousin, and to experience all the happiness and joy in everyone. The full run-down of the wedding will be in my next post (with lots of behind-the-scenes photos, don’t worry), but I first wanted to document and share a very, very cool moment that happened.

January 2nd, 2015. After giving my speech as Maid of Honor at the Rehearsal Dinner and the rest of the toasts concluded, a mini dance party broke out on the dance floor. I was dancing with my parents, my cousins, my aunts and uncles, my brother, the bridesmaids, and other extended family there for the bride and groom (the fan-favorite of the night was Uptown Funk). And then I knew. I looked around and saw how happy everyone was, including myself! After we had all just poured out hearts out in speeches, everyone came together to celebrate and have a wacky, goofy time together- bad dance moves and all. I knew that I wanted to work on weddings for the rest of my life. In that moment I knew I could never have another career. I knew that I was made to be a wedding planner.

I guess I had never realized the power of weddings until that Rehearsal Dinner night. Not only do weddings unite husband and wife, but they bring the people you love most under one roof. I hadn’t been with all of my cousins in one place in three years. I had never danced on the dance floor with my 78-year-old grandma. But weddings make that happen. Weddings bring people together, families together, and create a happiness and excitement that is incomparable. I want to be a part of making that happiness possible for people for the rest of my life. I will forever remember that moment, smiling and laughing on the dance floor and just knowing that this is what God put me on this earth to do. So look out wedding industry, I’m comin’ for ya.

xo- Allison

Timelines and Tinsel

Hello there!

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! After a break from weddings the past few weeks with my final exams, Christmas, and family gatherings, I finally got some time today to dive back in… and I’m sure glad I did. This blog post is kind of all over the place but I tried to keep it focused on two things:

1. Timelines- An update on my preparation and planning for my cousin’s wedding.

2. Tinsel- A beautiful winter wedding, inspired by Christmas and hues that mesh perfectly with snow.


I’m currently in Northern Michigan with my family at our cabin. Even though I’m not a great skier, being surrounded by snow sure does put me at peace. While I don’t hit the slopes with my brother, I find ways to keep busy 🙂 I took a trip to a nearby spa for a fabulous massage and I’ve been enjoying time by the fireplace reading, blogging, and assisting with last minute details for Hayley’s wedding!! Hayley is my cousin and I am serving as the Maid of Honor at her wedding (to read other posts about Hayley’s big day, click here). The wedding is on January 3rd (only 5 days away!) and I’ve been helping my aunt with a lot of the final details. It’s become more and more obvious as the hours go by and texts come in that is literally crunch time.

One fun thing I’ve helped with (all within the past 24 hours… phew! I’m ready for another massage!) is a lot of timeline making for the bridal party and family members. I’ve made documents that detail when and where bridesmaids, groomsmen, and family need to be on the day of the wedding to make sure everyone arrives on time to keep things running smoothly. Some may call it obsessive, but I call it organization– a definite must for any wedding. Also included on these documents are packing lists, addresses, important phone numbers, and more.

Assisting with a lot of the details, scheduling, and communication has shown me that I can do this. These past few days have given me a real taste of what wedding planning would be like… and I am in LOVE. At times when I have doubts about my dream of opening my own wedding planning business, I remind myself that weddings are where my heart’s at. I know God put this love of weddings in my heart for a reason and I think I can do big things in the wedding industry, not only for couples but for Him- glorying God and His beautiful creation of marriage in everyday of my work. Being able to gain some hands-on practice with planning the past few days has shown me that this is something I love and I’ m actually pretty good at. Of course I’m still learning and I have a long way to go before I “open up shop”, but making these timelines and checklists has reminded me that I am capable of following my dreams. I’m going to be taking lots of notes (both mental and typed on my phone when I catch a break) during Hayley’s entire wedding weekend to observe how the behind-the-scenes aspects work, how to avoid drama, and how to keep things on schedule. There will be a blog post don’t worry. I’m pretty pumped. Experience is key and although this is no formal internship or job, this is a real wedding. A real couple and a real love. A wedding for my cousin that I love; a day of celebration and a chance that’s given me hands-on wedding experience that I’m so thankful for.


Alright, switching gears to a mock-up I made today!

Being by all of this snow made me realize that weddings can be beautiful in any season- sunny or snowy. The snow is special because it’s so crisp. White is a blank canvas that offers a variety of color palette options. While you probably don’t want summery colors invading your winter bash, you can still opt for pops of color like this couple did.

This couple chose a fabulous shade of red that wasn’t quite Santa Claus red, but it certainly fit the couple’s Christmas color scheme of red and green. Their color choice appeared in the flowers, cake, and paper invitation suite. I’m in love with this wedding because it’s not cheesy red and green with candy canes; it’s elegant and sophisticated, while still drawing in Christmas hues that remind guests what season they’re in. This red hue actually reminded me of Marsala, Pantone’s 2015 Color of the Year that was just announced.

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I personally don’t know if I could deal with the Michigan snow for a Christmas-themed wedding of my own. But, if I ended up saying “I Do” in frigid temps, I would easily be drawn to a great bold redish/wine color similar to the wedding above and the Pantone color. It’s a bold and powerful color. Paired with white snow, sugar cookies, and warm smiles, this wedding may just make me want to pull out the tinsel and Christmas goodies when I consider my next wedding mockup 🙂 Tis the season everyone!

xo- Allison


Inspiration Board Link: Couple/Invite

Worth the Wait

Hello there!

I stumbled across this beautiful “Worth the Wait” banner on Style Me Pretty recently. The banner (real calligraphy)  hung above the couple’s ceremony site while they said their vows.

This happy couple actually isn’t from the same wedding with the banner, but the black and white elegance, along with the way they’re looking at each other was just too perfect to pass up. This couple showcases something very vital to remember about love, weddings, and life in general. Their look at each other tells everything- they are so in love. They are made for each other.


Many times, I find myself getting caught up in the worry and pressure of finding “the one” for me… right this very second. I constantly wonder when I will meet the man God made especially for me. Surrounded by media, friends, and family who are all so happily in love, it’s easy to feel like I’m doing something wrong. Or that something is wrong with me. Or that I’m unlovable. But, then I remember the Almighty, wonderfully amazing God I serve.

He knows. God knows who I’m going to marry, what I’m going to do with the days of my life, and what paths and experiences are ahead of me. When I get stressed or feel lonely, I just have to slow down and remember this glorious truth. He makes all things good and right in His timing- He knows exactly what we need and when we need it. Even when I don’t know. This is so scary but also so comforting at the same time. Even though we don’t know what the future holds, the guy who knows how many hairs we have on our head (Luke 12:7) and who knew us and our life before we born (Jeremiah 1:5) knows it all!!

He makes all things good in His timing, as Ecclesiastes 3:1 says ” There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under the heavens”. This verse is a great reminder to remain patient. Even though patience is hard and waiting for the perfect guy may seem like ages in the making, I know my God and I know He will fulfill His promises. So, don’t fear if you’re single. Don’t stress if you’ve been waiting for quite some time. God’s timing is perfect… so enjoy the period of waiting and see it as a gift to get to know the Father on such a deep level. When the perfect guy does come into my life, according to the Lord’s plan, I know I will be so glad and thankful for this period of waiting. God is good. Trust that His plans are far better than any you could imagine.


This beautiful set of photos showcases couples that I thought just radiated love. Love that only happens when two people are made for each other. After all of the waiting in their lives, they found each other- the one to spend their lives with. I’ll leave you with a saying that I find myself saying to myself whenever I’m confused/overwhelmed/ anxious:

don’t know, but God knows. And that’s awesome. 


Some other Bible verses to inspire you about this topic:

“And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man…Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and clings to his wife, and they become one flesh.”- Genesis 2:22-24

“For if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.”- Romans 8:24

“For we know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to His purpose.”- Romans 8:28


So, don’t stress. God’s got this. One day, I know I’ll have my own beautiful wedding and amazing Christ-centered marriage that follows the wedding day. And I know it will be 100% worth the wait. 

Trust Him in the waiting.

xo-Allison


Inspiration Board Links: Banner/Couple, Couples

Hues of Gold

Hello there! I write to you with a chocolate chai latte in hand, microeconomics papers spread out in front of me. Sure, I should be studying, but I’ve been at that for 5 hours now. I thought I’d reward myself with a break and let my heart dive into the beautiful world of weddings… aka my happy place. I created this mock up a few weeks ago from a beautiful wedding in Hawaii that I found on Style Me Pretty.

A few things I loved about this wedding (check out the full gallery here):

Small size. This wedding only included close friends and family and made the occasion seem more intimate something really special about that in my opinion.

Location. This one is obvious. A Hawaii backdrop, beautiful sunset, ocean breezes… ahhh take me there! I can practically feel the salt in my hair and the warm sun on my skin.

Simplicity. No need to add extra pizzazz to this already gorgeous setting. I liked how the ceremony decor was kept simple and clean, with a nice flowy white backdrop and not much else. The scenery and the adorable couple stand out beautifully.

Gold. What instantly stood out to me in these photos was the gold. I love gold- it’s such a meaningful color in my opinion. Not only is it warm, but it’s powerful. It’s a hey, look at me kinda color. Gold is confident, powerful, and treasured. The gold decor used throughout their reception was also a nice tie-in.The sunlight hitting the couple is a wonderful shade of gold- making their love story look even more magical. Take a look at what I’m talking about!

Gold also reminds me of Jesus. Britt Nicole’s song Gold tells us we are worth more than gold with Christ- pretty cool. If gold is so precious, we are even more beautiful and precious, all because we have a Savior who treasures us. It’s not doubt that God’s love was shining down at this wedding, just like He shines down on us every second of everyday. So friends, don’t forget to remember that you are golden. Just like the shades of gold in this beautiful wedding, you can always be reassured that God is shining on you always.

xo-Allison


Inspiration Board Link: Gold