Author Archives: Silvana

How to Plan on a Wedding on a Budget

Recently my younger sister got engaged, and of course has come to me to help her plan her wedding. Not having a big budget to work off of, she knows that my frugal skills will be able to stretch it far. This has been an interesting challenge for me, and I thought I would share with you a few tips.

Of course nothing is simple. The groom hails from Canada, and the wedding is going to take place there. This may have made things a little more expensive for us, but the money saving ideas I picked up will work if you are planning on getting married in the next country or in your own backyard.

The Guest List

The first thing I realized was that if you want to save money on a wedding, you are going to have to trim the fat. This means the relatives you haven’t talked to in years, business associates you hate, and that BFF from first grade whom you only now exchange the occasional comment with on Facebook.

Guests should only be people who are an important part of your everyday life. Immediate family and your closest of friends only. This will save you a ton of money at the reception.

The Dresses

Being frugal means that everyone saves, even the bridesmaids. Pick a color and then let them choose a gown, with you having final veto power. So long as everyone is wearing the same color your bridal party will still look put together and the bridesmaids won’t be forced to spend hundreds on a dress they will never wear again.


You should do your dress shopping off season if possible. I have learned that the prices for wedding gowns has become ridiculous. Forget designer and just look for the dress that makes you look and feel like a princess, but not one that will make you into a pauper.


This is where I gave myself a huge pat on the back. An iPod is the perfect solution to reception music if you don’t want to spend thousands on a DJ or band. Just create a playlist of all of your favorites in the order you want, and assign DJ duty to a younger guest. There are announcements here and there he will have to make, but mostly it is running itself.

The One Thing You Shouldn’t Skimp On

The photography. This is the biggest day of your life, and if you let Uncle Herb take the shots, you will regret it. We were lucky and found Calgary wedding photographers who were very reasonable. They also handled the videography and engagement pictures which was a big plus. Using this professional team of wedding photographers in Calgary was worth every single cent.

This turned out to be an amazing wedding that our family is still talking about. Without a huge guest list, it felt intimate and more like a family get together where two new families got to actually get to know one another. The dresses were lovely, the music a big hit, and of course we have hundreds of shots to prove it. This just may be a new business venture for me.

Protecting Your Jacksonville Home

While the suburbs of Jacksonville, Florida are not rampant in crime like in other parts of the country, it is still a good idea to protect your home and property. Especially when you also have young children to think about. You don’t have to turn your house into Fort Knox to do this, instead invest in some good home security devices and sleep better at night knowing that your home and family are safe and secure.

Home Security Systems

A home security system is probably the most popular way to protect your home, and the most effective, but it is usually the most expensive. If you are frugal like me you are going to want to shop around for a home security company that is priced in your budget. Remember, you are not only paying for the installation of the home security system but also for the monthly service of having it.

These systems are tied into a central base where a breach is called in to the local police for you. This type of system can add anywhere from $50 to $100 bucks to your monthly budget.


Seems so simple, but would be burglars hate to have to deal with a bunch of locks. Check that the locks on all of your home’s windows are in good working order even if they are on the second floor. Burglars have been known to use a ladder. Your front door and any other main point of entrance should be dead bolted and have a chain as well for when you do have to open the door for a stranger.

Your most vulnerable spot is at the sliding door that opens to the backyard. Not only does your yard block this point of entry from view, the locks on these doors are normally not very good. Check yours and consider either investing in another lock or another type of door that can be dead bolted.

Pet Protection

Nothing says stay away better than a growling dog. The trouble is you also have to worry about protecting them from harm. One way to do accomplish this while still protecting your property is with wireless dog fences. According to, PetSafe PIF 300s give your dog full run of the yard to the limit that you impose. This keeps the entire perimeter of your property guarded from unwanted intruders.

Motion Sensor Lights

Just imagine the look on a would be robbers face when it is suddenly illuminated by a bright light. Motion sensor lights turn on whenever something moves within their radar. Pointed at the vulnerable points of your home, this is a great way to catch a thief red handed.


Consider the level of protection you need and your budget when looking into securing your Jacksonville home. You want to give your family the maximum protection they deserve at a price that is not going to break your bank. Even if you have to spend a little, the cost of the peace of mind that having a secure home gives is priceless.

Learn More About Fishing in Florida and Catching Fish

If you are planning to go on a vacation, you may want to consider visiting Florida and explore nature at its best. Aside from the usual parks, resorts and attractions available for you to visit, you can as well find time to go on a nature trip with your family or friends and start enjoying your vacation away from the busy city streets.

florida sunset

One of the most exciting activities that you can engage with when you’re on a nature trip is fishing. In Florida, you may find a lot of people wanting to learn how to fish. Knowing that there are a lot of resources available in Florida, it is definitely a great opportunity to learn how to catch fish here. The weather in Florida makes it one of the most preferred habitats of various animals including fish.

There are various locations in this state that will allow you to get access to your first big catch. Fresh water fishing is more likely a popular activity in the lakes of Florida. Either if you are an expert in fishing or not, you will definitely find an opportunity to enhance your fishing skills through engaging in various fishing activities here.

Through fishing you will then find a variety of species available for you to catch. You may find various strategies as well when it comes to catching bigger fish and those challenging ones. The first thing that you may want to consider when it comes to catching fish successfully is the location. Although you may find different locations in terms of fishing hotspots, you will still have to research on the behavior of different fish species to know whether they have migrated to a different spot in the lake or if they have remained on the same location.

If you choose to fish in Florida, you have to keep in mind that it is not only the location that is important but the availability of the fish as well in that area. Fish prefer various breeding areas depending on the temperature of water, the availability of their food as well as the safety of the place where they can hide from potential predators. If you want to catch fish easily, you should as well consider finding the right location.

To make it easier for you, make sure that you are all geared up if you choose to go fishing with your family and friends in Florida. Aside from the usual things and equipment that you can carry on your nature trip, bring a fish finder with you handy. This will help you catch more fish easier without having to waste more time thinking that you will soon be lucky to catch even a small one for dinner.