Laramie’s Alibi Wood Fire Pizzaria & Bakery has been open & cranking out delicious food & live music events while undergoing an impressive renovation this year. Laramigoes have been heading to “the Alibi” for years for food, libation & frivolity — and we were thrilled to feature their catering in our Cheyenne & Laramie bridal expos in 2019! If you’ve got an event coming up, wedding or otherwise, give them a buzz at 307.745.9738, find them on Facebook, or visit their website. OR! Even better yet, when you’re in Laramie go grab a bite for yourself and see what the buzz is about — head to 404 S. 4th Street and save us a slice …
p.s. Congrats to the Alibi on being a 2019 local’s choice winner from The Laramie Boomerang!
you ready for what happens after the rings and reception? As you look forward
to a lifelong commitment, it’s easy to feel a mixture of excitement and nerves.
You have probably heard the odds about divorce and you’ve probably heard
that relationships take work. Love isn’t always enough to sustain a marriage.
do people do in healthy, long-lasting relationships? To answer that, I
have to share the knowledge and wisdom of my go-to guru on healthy
relationships & marriage. Dr. John Gottman is a therapist and researcher
who has studied couple relationships for decades. This man can actually predict
divorce. He doesn’t have a crystal ball; he has identified the
destructive habits that cause marital demise. Most importantly, he figured out
the key habits people engage in on a regular basis to do work in their
relationship. These habits are effective–we have decades of research to prove
it. The great thing is these habits are things you can do right now, on a daily
basis, to help your relationship thrive over the years.
what’s the secret? Put simply, couples in happy long-lasting relationships are
best friends and treat each other accordingly. That foundation of friendship
means that partners know about each other’s current lives. Here’s the key with this
one: the person you marry will change. Perhaps in small ways, but maybe in
major ways. For instance, if you become parents together, that role will change
your worlds in big ways. It’s important to keep yourself updated on your
partner’s life of which you share a large part. Dr. Gottman calls this concept
“Love Maps.” He stresses the importance of knowing your partner’s inner world
by having regular conversations about their life. What is their favorite way to
spend their time? What is their biggest fear? What personal improvements are
they trying to make? What’s going on with their friendships? Answers to these
questions give you a mental picture of your partner’s world. We’ve all probably
heard a person regretfully say, “we just grew apart,” or, “I just don’t know
who they are anymore, they’re not the person I married.” Keeping up-to-date on
your “Love Map” is just one way to prevent that from happening and keep a
strong foundation of friendship.
friends listen to one another and deal with conflict in a generally respectful
way. Part of listening to one another involves including your partner in big
decisions. Dr. Gottman found that partners (men especially) who accept
influence from their partner have greater satisfaction in their relationships. Accepting
influence means including your partner in major decisions, valuing their
opinion, and listening to their ideas. Want to buy a new car? Thinking about
applying for a new job in another town? Talk about the decision with your
on to that sticky subject of conflict — in any discussion about healthy
relationships, it’s bound to get some attention. Did you know that happy
couples fight as much as unhappy couples? Yes, you read that right. Research
shows that it’s not how much you fight, it’s how you fight that
counts. Contempt, criticism, and
explosive anger will all eat away at that
foundation of friendship. Unfortunately, our biology works against us when we
face conflict. When you become angry or emotionally aroused, your brain is
actually flooded with chemicals that render you useless in solving problems and
seeing your partner’s point of view. It’s easier said than done, but the best
thing to do when you’re emotional or angry is to take a break and come back to
the conversation when you are both calm and have a clear mind.
long-lasting couples don’t just deal with conflict when it arises, they do so
much more to express appreciation and affection. John Gottman found that
stable, happy couples had a ratio of five positive interactions to
every one negative interaction. That is, these couples still argue, say snarky
things, or snap at one another. But, they also share inside jokes, hug, laugh,
listen, and compliment each other more than they fight. It’s like filling up
your love bank account with positive experiences so that when you take a
withdrawal, you’ll be okay.
many things in life, you get out of marriage what you put into it. The hard
work that goes into a lasting marriage pays off. Satisfied couples are happier,
mentally and physically better off, and (especially men) are likely to live
longer. Happy couples also make better parents. Notice that the key word in
those statements is happy. Unhappy couples don’t fare so well. It’s not
simply being married that is beneficial–it’s being in a satisfied, emotionally
connected relationship. So, as you look forward to a lifetime together, keep in
mind these habits for a healthy, happy relationship.
Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work” by John Gottman
For new parents: “And Baby Makes Three” by John Gottman
About Alyssa McElwain …
Alyssa McElwain, PhD, CFLE is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family & Consumer Sciences at the University of Wyoming. Dr. McElwain received her M.S. in Marriage & Family Therapy from Purdue University in 2008, and her Ph.D in Human Development & Family Studies from Auburn University in 2015. Her approach to teaching her classes at UW includes active student participation & discussion, including role playing activities and critical case analyses. “Step into one of my classes and you will clearly see that teaching is my passion,” Dr. McElwain writes. “I strive to provide an engaging educational environment where students actively participate in their learning. My belief is that learning can and should be fun. I also believe the best learning occurs when people work hard and practice using the information they are learning.” To learn more about Dr. McElwain’s professional & personal pursuits, visit her website,https://alyssamcelwain.weebly.com/
Congrats to Rachel & Dyllon on their beautiful Casper wedding that was held June 10, 2018. Thank you to Ardent Photography’s Rick & Stephanie for sharing this wedding full of special details … I’m in love with that backdrop to their ceremony, the musical tie and the bouquet …
You have a love story. You found the love of your life, the person you want to spend a lifetime with. And now you are planning a wedding! You get one day to celebrate the love you and your fiance share, and it has to be amazing!
are a million questions to ask and just as many decisions that have to be made
to make one day the perfect day.
Where do you even start? How do
you know which vendors to trust? How can
you find exactly what you want? The list
goes on and on. That is where LUXE comes
need a planning company that fully understands your story and can create an
event that is completely personalized to your lives; who you are as individuals
and couples. You deserve a company that makes every effort to create an event
experience that embraces what you both enjoy and wish to share with your
At LUXE, we do all of this and more. We become true friends with our clients and we fall in love with our clients’ love stories. We become emotionally invested in not only our client’s event but also our clients’ lives. Our clients aren’t just people we plan events for; they are people we care about. It is that relationship that paves the way for truly wonderful, personalized events that are a mirror of our clients as people and their hopes for the future.
Thank you to Deanna & Nicholas and their photographer, Macy Carter of Macy Carter Photography (website at macycarterphotography.com and IG handle @wanderingambition) — for sharing this beautiful day with us! Deanna and Nicholas were married May 4, 2018 at Schwabacher’s Landing in Grand Teton National Park near Jackson. “We were going to get married at Mormon Barn, but Schwabacher’s Landing was a last minute change, and totally worth it,” Deanna says. “The first time I went to Grand Teton National Park was with my family in 2013 and I immediately fell in love with it. I was determined to get Nicholas there and for him to enjoy it as much as I did!”
I’ll let Deanna tell you about the adventure that was their big day …
“In 2016 we graduated college with our bachelor’s degrees and decided to treat ourselves. So as a graduation gift we designed a national park oriented road trip.
We drove for three months, over 15,000 miles and visited 23 National Parks and hiked over 67 miles. Wyoming was our number one most memorable state. The landscape, wildlife, and untamed magic in the air made us want to go back. So on June 6th, 2017 Nicholas proposed to me in Havana, Cuba and my first vision for the wedding was with the Teton mountains behind us.
Starting on April 19, 2018 we drove from FL to WY in our tiny 2017 Chevy Cruze with my brother in the back seat and everything needed for us to relive our last journey. On May 4th we were joined by my mom, dad, brother, uncle, aunt and cousin. The officiant was a childhood friend of my mother’s and his wife came too. The photographer, Macy, and her now fiance, were there as well.”
Deanna and Nicholas were married at 5 pm, just before the sun set. Deanna steals my heart as a DIY bride, making all of their boutonnieres, bouquets and invitations. The couple also added a special, unique touch to their unity ceremony. “Our unity ceremony was our vows in a wooden box that contains a bottle of wine which we will drink on our one year and reread our vows and then replace the wine,” Deanna explains. “The box has our name and the date of our wedding engraved in it.” (LOVE! And have I said yet how much I LOVE Deanna’s dress?!)
The couple resides in Seattle now, and we wish them the very best for a life full of love and continued adventure… Thanks to Deanna, Nicholas and Macy for sharing these beautiful images with us!
Perhaps it’s because Ceira (the bride) was one of our former dance teachers at our Laramie Dance & Arts Center that we also own … perhaps it’s the historical flare she and Bryce chose when they selected their engagement shoot venue to be the Pioneer Museum in Lander … perhaps it’s the emotion Virginia Ruth captured in this beautiful shoot … or yeah, maybe it’s just all of that. Whatever it is, I LOVE these images … I can’t wait to see their wedding pics!!
Congrats to these two lovebirds, and thanks to Ginny of Virginia Ruth Photography for sharing!
Congrats to Jenelle and Clay, who were married May 27, 2017 in Douglas at the Wyoming State Fairgrounds! Thanks so much to Lacey Dale Photography in Lusk, who shared this gorgeous wedding with us. She had a lot of fun with Jenelle’s desire for black & white photography (although she threw in some color too for us, which I LOVE!), and she loved the emotion in their day. “Clay was the cutest groom ever!” Lacey exclaimed. “He was like a little kid when he saw her for the first time by the river.” (Say it with me — awwww!) 🙂 “They were so family oriented throughout the whole entire day,” Lacey added. “Their friends and family meant everything to them.” LOVE!
Wedding Rentals – Make sure you have all the needed items!
Having an outdoor event or using a venue that doesn’t provide every item needed (or the
items that they provide don’t meet your style)? Well let’s talk rentals!
The starting point:
● Check which vendor provides what –
○ venue to see what they include in the price.
○ caterer to review what they include in their price. If you need to provide rentals for them, what do they need and will they unpack and repack the rentals?
● Contact a rental company with your total guest count, the budget you would like to work within (be realistic and honest, as a truly professional company will guide you to the best options), and if you have examples of styles that you like, provide those too!
Some items you may want to consider and discuss with your wedding rental company:
● Outdoor wedding:
○ Do you need a tent? Is it the main venue or will it just be your backup plan if the weather is unpleasant?
■ Will you want fabric draping, chandeliers, or other specialty decor?
■ You may also want to consider heating or A/C depending on the season and weather forecast.
○ Will you need power? Will you need generators to provide electricity for the DJ, band, caterer, and lighting? (These are a few suggestions that will need power, it’s not an exhaustive list!)
○ Restrooms? If you’re outdoors will you have adequate restroom facilities? Estimate around 4 stalls for women and 3 stalls for men per 150 guests.
● All venues:
○ Tables and chairs: You will also want to check if they are provided and meet your expectations at any venue you choose. Remember to include ceremony seating and any special situations like musicians that need seated while playing. In addition to tables for your guests you may need
tables for buffets, cake, and gifts.
○ Dance floor. If you are outdoors this may be a necessity, and if your
venue doesn’t have one or you dislike the one they have you will want to
make sure you have this in your list of rental items.
○ Linens and napkins. There are an array of fabrics, patterns, and colors to choose from, and linens are a wonderful way to customize your wedding and showcase your style! Renting linens ensures that they arrive clean and pressed and that you won’t have to deal with the hassle of cleaning/storing/selling them after the wedding.
○ Dinnerware, flatware, and barware. The best way to figure out what you need here is to start with the venue, caterer, and bartenders to see what they provide and any recommendations they will provide. Your wedding rental professional will answer any questions and assist you with
recommendations and suggestions.
— There are other rentals that may appeal to you depending on the look and atmosphere you would like to create from lounge furniture to ceremony decor like archways. Check with your local wedding professionals to learn about the options you have available.
● If your caterer is placing an order with the rental company, see if they will add your items to their order so that the wedding rentals are all delivered at the same time. This will keep you from having to pay multiple delivery fees, and if all rental items are from the same company you won’t have to keep the orders separate to make sure that they are returned to the correct rental company.
● Inquire if the company charges damage waiver fees and what these fees cover and, just as importantly, what is not covered.
● Review cancellation policies, deposits, retaining fees, and payment arrangements.
Written by & images provided by:
Carol Thomas, Professional Wedding Planner with A-One Weddings & Events event
rental specialist providing rentals throughout Wyoming, Nebraska, and Colorado