Thursday, January 31, 2013

Dream Weddings: Fairy tales can come true

“Here comes the bride dressed all in light…” goes the traditional bridal march. Most women, if not all, probably had at one point in their lives dreamt of walking down the aisle to marry the one for whom they are intended.
We can trace this to the influence of fairytales in our lives, which many girls read during childhood. That includes me! I even had a collection of fairytale books. I grew up dreaming what many girls dream… to meet my prince charming and marry him.
As I grew older, I realized that a dream like that doesn’t happen easily like in fairytales. Still, that realization didn’t stop me from dreaming about my wedding MANY years before it actually took place.
And even now that I’m already married and the wedding of my dreams had taken place almost five years ago, weddings still give me that warm feeling every time I think of them. I love weddings because for me weddings represent the triumph of love over many challenges. It means that the couple love each other so much that they vow to stick with each other “for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health…” Isn’t that romantic? Since June is considered as the wedding month since the time of the Romans, I interviewed single ladies about their dream weddings.
Abby Guan, a bank teller, shares, “Saying YES to the man I love is one of the best feelings in the world that I don’t want to miss. I want it to be fun and full of surprises. I prefer a church wedding because I want it to be solemn. I’m not planning to spend all of my fortune. I just want a unique wedding that will not be forgotten.”
Paz Ancheta, a government employee, shares two things that she definitely wants to happen on her wedding day, “I’ll wear a pink wedding gown and my mom will sing The Lord’s Prayer.”
Ann, a business owner, says that the church and reception venue should be air conditioned. She adds, “I dream of marrying the man I truly deserve and who truly loves me and cares for me. I plan to have a simple but elegant wedding with my family and closest friends. I envision myself wearing a white lace gown with a colorful bouquet walking down the aisle with a big smile on my face, while I see my handsome groom in a barong, happily waiting for me at the altar. I’ll be the most beautiful and happiest woman on my wedding day.”

Ms. Apple Green, RRY, an Early Childhood Education Teacher, details her dream wedding, “I dream of getting married in a church with a LONG aisle, on top of a mountain or a hill, before sunset. I imagine myself marching with a long lace veil covering my face and making a long train at the back, holding a bouquet with a mixture of baby pink, apple green and white tulips, with white rose petals scattered on the red carpet, and flowers with the same color motif on the aisles.
“All the important people in my life (dressed in white) watch me as I march towards my groom with a wide smile and a radiant face, to the music of The First Time I Loved Forever played by a quartet and sang by an all male choir. The reception, in a spacious garden outside the church overlooking the beach, is lighted by torches. Tables adorned by the same flowers as in the church will have a green apple fruit in the middle of the arrangement,” she continues.
All the ladies I interviewed didn’t mention a particular month for their wedding except Hazel Rosario, a Software Quality Assurance Manager, who wants her Greek-inspired wedding with white and gold motif to be in the month of December. She further imagines, “I want to look like a Greek goddess! I want my gown to be simple yet sophisticated, no heavy lace and no layers and layers of fabric. I want it to be very light and flowing with minimal embellishments, hand-painted gold design at the trail and at the edge of the gown.
“I want the ceremony to be in an old church or chapel made of wood and decorated like an enchanted forest. It will be simple yet solemn with the people dear to me and my bridegroom present. Our family members and close friends will compose the entourage. When I look behind from the altar, I want to see familiar faces sharing this wonderful event with us. The reception will be at a private resort where our guests will party until the wee hours of the morning.”
Each one has her own unique dream wedding in mind. Each dream wedding is as beautifully unique as each of these future brides.
How about you? Were you inspired to imagine your own dream wedding by simply reading this article? Go ahead! A boyfriend or fiancĂ© is not a prerequisite to imagining your dream wedding. Don’t let your circumstances stop you. As mentioned earlier in this article, I imagined and planned my dream wedding MANY years before I had my first boyfriend. I even sketched my dream wedding gown and the gowns of the women in my entourage! I had imagined almost every detail that many of my close friends then would tell me in jest that all I needed was a bridegroom because I had it all planned in my head.

I believed that being specific in my dreams and prayers would increase the chances of my dream coming true. Just like in Cinderella’s song, I kept on believing until the dream that I wished came true on December 19, 2007. The wedding of my dreams took place as I imagined it almost up to the last detail. Almost… because as my priest-friend who officiated my wedding said in his homily, “After all the planning and hard work, there comes a time when we just have to sit back and accept everything as it unfolds, just as it is… according to the script of the Lord Himself.”
Cheers, to all future brides! And to the 2012 June Brides, enjoy your wedding day and savor every moment!

Teresa authored the book When My Bridegroom Comes. She met her first and only boyfriend (who eventually became her bridegroom) at a Valentine’s party where she launched her book. Their love story was published in the book 40 Stories of Finding Your One True Love by Bo Sanchez. To order a copy of her book and share your dream wedding in her blog, email her at or
This was originally published on June 4, 2012 at The Philippine Online Chronicles.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Ideas on how couples can nurture and improve their relationships

Let me begin this New Year post by thanking all of you who have been reading my blog and encouraging me in your own simple way to continue developing and using my gift of writing.  You are one of my biggest blessings last year.  I am amazed at the number of pageviews this blog of mine already has at this time and at year end a few days ago.  I thank the Lord for the inspiration to start this new blog around May of last year.
Now, for my first post this year...
I had been terribly busy during the last quarter of last year that I hardly had the time to update this blog of mine.  With God's help, I hope and pray I'd be able to write more often for this blog this year -- maybe at least a month.  I still have a lot of ideas that I have yet to put into writing.  I trust that if God wills it, I would be able to post them here soon.
Around three years ago, I listed in my blog some ideas on what activities couples can do on their monthsaries that can help nurture and improve their relationships.  Let me quote from my previous post and share some examples of activities I have listed for me and my husband.

"I believe that marriages these days face a lot more challenges than in the past. One big reason for this is busyness. The world we live in now is so fast-paced. Couples often find themselves hurrying from one place to another, scampering to finish one task after another. Unfortunately, with all the things we think we need to do, sometimes nurturing our relationships takes a back seat. This should not be; because no matter how so in love a couple is, sooner or later the feeling will die down and hard work should begin to continuously work on keeping the love alive."

"My husband and I are not spared from these challenges. Even with all the planning that I do, I still sometimes find myself having so much on my plate. The same is true for my husband who has a very demanding job right now – a tough job that entails him to be on call 24/7. While we are praying and waiting on the Lord to hear our prayer that he would find a new position where he doesn’t need to be on call 24/7, I made a list yesterday of activities the two of us can do during our monthsary celebrations to continuously keep our love alive and our bonding strong. I’m sharing these with you thinking that some couples out there might also benefit from them."
1.  Meet with Ninongs and Ninangs (principal sponsors) to share concerns and ask them for tips on how they were able to overcome similar challenges when they were young couples like us. It’s also a time for us to share with them our joys and victories as a couple. This could be done on a quarterly basis.
3.  Watch a love story in the movie house or at home and discuss the good points from the movie that we can learn from or adapt in our relationship.
10. Meet with single friends and inspire them with our love story.
12. Visit model houses and discuss dreams for future house and ideas on how to make it a reality. 
16. Serve each other throughout the day using the 5 Love languages.
Click here to read my previous blog post in full.
You can come up with your own list or adapt some of these which you find appealing or interesting to you and your spouse.  The important thing is you make time to keep the fire of love burning between the two of you.
Cheers to a year full of love, hope, and dreams coming true for you and your families!