“Hello Fresh!” | Confessions Of A Newlywed

We continue our current blog series entitled, “Confessions Of A Newlywed,” where we follow my assistant’s first year of marriage. It’s a continuation our popular blog series, “Confessions Of A Future Bride!” 🙂

“So this post is a little different than past posts.. I decided to try Hello Fresh. It is one of those companies that sends you everything you need to cook a meal. Honestly, these companies are typically just too expensive for me, but I got a coupon in my email.. And I’m a sucker for coupons 🙂

So I signed up and got my 50% off. Which brought it down to $30 for three dinners.. Which I think is pretty good and made it worth a shot! You get to pick which day of the week you would like it to be delivered and pick the three meals (out of about 6 or 7 choices). 

I chose Lemongrass Pork Burgers, Rustic Beef Ragu and Roasted Pork Tenderloin. It was at my house when I came home from work on Tuesday (actually it was at my neighbors house -_- ) It was packaged with a huge ice pack to keep everything cold, which it did. And I was surprised to see it came packaged by meal.. I guess I was expecting to have to sort things outs, but they really make it easy for you! 

First, let’s go over some of my doubts going into it.. I was expecting the meals to take a while to cook. I was expecting it to be difficult to cook. And I was expecting to not have a lot of food.
I was wrong with each of those expectations 🙂 The meals were very easy to make. Each meal came with a recipe card making it super straightforward. Each of the meals was relatively fast; however, I did find that it took longer than the recipe cards said (not much though). And after each meal I was full.. Art said he wasn’t full, but also wasn’t left hungry 🙂 The only downfall is that I typically like to make meals that provide left overs for lunches the following day and with Hello Fresh that is not possible..  Also, Art wasn’t a fan of some of the ingredients.. Like the couscous.
But overall, I really loved the experience! Hello Fresh made me cook meals that I never would have thought to try before. All of the ingredients were super fresh and made the meals taste super fresh! I would most definitely recommend Hello Fresh to everyone, especially couples because it is more affordable than I feel for families and it provides something fun and different to cook!
If you are interested, click the link for a great deal on your first box!!
~Mrs. Bongiorno

I am soo glad Rachel tried this out! I was always curious about how these home delivery cooking meals worked and I’m glad that she had a good experience! I will totally be trying it by clicking that link above! Let us know if you are going to try it – we’d love to hear your experiences with it as well!!!!


On another note – who’s finished with the book of month?! If you are new to the blog, it’s not too late to join our virtual book club. Here is more information and the first book that we’ve gone through. I am soooo excited to talk about it on April 15th when we go Facebook Live!

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We Haven’t Killed Each Other Yet! | Confessions Of A Newlywed

Remember how Rachel and I started a blog series entitled, “Confessions Of A Future Bride,” where we documented her whole wedding planning process?! If you missed all of those post check this one out and scroll all the way to the bottom to see them all listed!

Well I figured, lets keep this thing going! We got sooooo many positive reviews and feedback from it that we thought it would be cool to continue and document the life of a newlywed!

Let’s read the first post!

“Confessions of a Newlywed | Post 1 | We Haven’t Killed Each Other Yet!!!


Well, here we are again… Arthur and I are going on nine months of being married! Can you believe it?! How on Earth did nine months go by?! We celebrated my first birthday as a married couple, our first Thanksgiving as a married couple, our first Christmas as a married couple, our first New Years as a married couple, and our first Valentine’s Day as a married couple. And let me tell you something… It feels exactly the same as when we were dating… Or engaged 🙂 
So let’s see, what have we been up to since the last time we spoke in June.. Not much, we are pretty boring people 🙂 The big news (and I guess only news) is that we bought a house!! AHH! Finally! As much as I love my In-laws and appreciate them letting us live in their basement apartment.. I am very happy for us to have our own place!! We closed on our house at the end of January, so we are still putting things on the walls and several rooms are still filled with boxes. Butttttt, we have done quite a bit of work on the house. And let me tell you, I am absolutely in loveeeee with our house.
I don’t think there is much else to share! Keep up with the blog as we get it kick started with more weddings and a few more posts about married life :)”

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Breakfast at Erica’s | A Beginners Photography Workshop


Have a camera but don’t really know how to use it??? Or are you looking to take better pictures of your children, pets or loved ones?? How about better photos for your business or blog? If you answered yes to any of these questions then this is the class for you!

EricaLee Photography is happy to announce their second photography workshop – “Breakfast at Erica’s!” You’ll have the chance to mingle with other newbies while eating a delicious brunch and learn some of the tricks of your camera in a nice, small intimate setting at my house! Just in time to learn how to capture beautiful memories this holiday season!!!!


Price – $75.00 (with a $25.00 non refundable retainer paid in advance to hold your spot)

Date – Saturday, November 5, 2016

Time – 11:00am – 2:00pm

Place – My Home (Middletown, NY)

Supplies Needed – A DSLR Camera aka digital camera aka not the camera that fit’s into your pocket & Memory Card

Whether your photographing semi-manually or only know how to turn your camera on and shoot there’s always room to learn more. We welcome all ranges of expertise!

Limited spots available so make sure to email me at efreitas116@gmail.com to book you spot!!

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Rachel’s Honeymoon!

Helloooo my friends! Long time no see! We’ve missed you! Last time we wrote it was a few days before Rachel’s wedding day. We concluded our “Confessions of a Future Bride” series but that doesn’t mean we will stop writing. We received such a great amount of feedback that we wanted to keep this blog alive and running.

Since Rachel is no longer considered a “future bride,” we thought it would be cool to document her first year as a WIFE! Or better yet – “Confessions Of A Newlywed!!” I [ERICA] will also be writing about my life as a wife, mom and photographer showcasing a lot of our work!! So make sure to check back here frequently as you won’t want to miss some great posts!

Art and I had an amazing time in Puerto Rico.. I absolutely loved that our hotel was right on the beach and had beach chairs and hammocks scattered down the beach.. You could find me laying on a hammock reading my book on most afternoons 🙂
Of course it was our Honeymoon, so most of the trip will stay between Arthur and me 😉 But I will share that we had a great time at the beach, the pool, El Yunque- the rainforest, the Bacardi factory and we ate soooooo muchhhhh fooooddd!! And saw lots of little creatures.. Actually the iguanas were not little at all 🙂
Enjoy some pictures from our week in paradise!

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“Confessions Of A Future Bride” | Post 37

Getting down to the wire!!!!!! 🙂

“Being at so many weddings I see lots of really great ideas for the favors. Some great ones from past weddings are seed paper with something like “watch our love grow,” jam/jelly with “spread the love,” drink koozies with one saying or another…
After scouring Pinterest {of course, what else would I do} I found some other great ideas.. Some needed lots of craftiness.. And others needed lots of money 🙂
I did some searching on my second favorite website, Etsy, and I found something that was different from what I had seen before and I absolutely loved it… Succulents! {Here’s the link for the shop on Etsy https://www.etsy.com/shop/SANPEDROCACTUS } They offer a million different options.. Different types of assortments. Some come in pretty little pots for wedding favors {but of course those cost more 🙂 } So I went with the cheaper option and if you remember back to all of the burlap I had purchased, I will be wrapping each plant in burlap :). It will be a bit of a task, but that is what I have my amazing bridal party for 🙂

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They should be delivered by Friday, so get ready girls 🙂
Almost a week until the wedding! This is all happening so fast! This week we picked up our wedding bands, met with the DJ, today I will meet with the florist and tomorrow we sit down with my brother {David, our officiant} to go over the ceremony.. And I also scheduled for me and my girls to get our manis and pedis 🙂 It has been a super busy week!”
~The Future Mrs. Bongiorno

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“Confessions Of A Future Bride” | Post 36

Let’s just call today’s post #weddingTHURSDAY just for today! I feel like this whole month is extremely busy with Rachel trying to tie any loose ends for the wedding as well as being in the middle of a very busy wedding season. This weekend is Rachel’s Bachelorette Party Weekend! Woohoo!!!!! You won’t want to miss those pictures! Make sure you follow us on Facebook or Instagram to see photos from this weekend!!!

If you are new to the blog and are just following along, here’s what you missed:

Rachel, my business partner/assistant/second shooter, recently got engaged and with us being photographers, thought it would be cool document her whole wedding planning process. Not only to keep these memories but to maybe help out one of our readers who may be a future bride as well as get suggestions from you guys. Here are the past posts that you’ve missed.

  1. Post 1 ~ We got a glimpse of how Rachel and her fiancé, Arthur met! It’s an adorable story including some very young pictures of them.
  2. Post 2 ~ We got to hear the story of how Arthur proposed in Bermuda! Check out that post to see her ring! It’s beautiful!
  3. Post 3 ~ Rachel said YES TO THE DRESS!! Check it out to see her experience at David’s Bridal!
  4. Venues! Venues! Venues! Post 4 | Post 5 | Post 6 | are her weeks in search for the perfect venue! And in Post 7 you get to hear the place that she chose!!!
  5. Post 8 ~ We are back at Davids Bridal picking out the Bridesmaids Dresses as well as seeing who she chose to stand up there with her on the big day!!
  6. Post 9 (maid of honor & big sis), Post 10 (little sis), Post 11 (cousin), Post 12 (sister-in-law), Post 13 (best friend), and Post 14 (MEE) ~This is where Rachel introduces her bridesmaids and tells us the background stories of how she knows them. There are some pretty funny moments and awesome pictures!
  7. Post 15 ~ Engagement Pictures!!!! Here, we get to see Rachel’s engagement session. I also give some tips on how to make the most of your engagement session.
  8. Post 16 ~ All about the “Save The Dates.”
  9. Post 17 ~ All about the DJ and some songs you don’t want to miss being played at the wedding!
  10. Post 18 ~ Bridal Registry! This is a fun post because I filmed it rather than photographing it!! Check it out!!
  11. Post 19 ~ Speed Round Questions with the Fiance’ himself!!!
  12. Post 20 ~ Special Valentines Day Post!
  13. Post 21 ~ To Peek or Not To Peek…That is the question!!! Will Rachel be doing a first look?
  14. Post 22 ~ Flowers, Flowers, Flowers!!! Time to talk about the Bouquet.
  15. Post 23 ~ This post is all about the Wedding Cake! mmmmmmmmmm
  16. Post 24 ~ Checklist of what has been done so far and what’s left to do!
  17. Post 25 ~ Tuxes Tuxes Tuxes!!! Arthur get’s his Tuxes! Rachel came up with a beautiful look for the guys!
  18. Post 26 ~ A Wedding DIY!!
  19. Post 27 ~ Rachel’s Hairstyle Ideas | Part I
  20. Post 28 ~ A post all about the rules or traditions that Rachel is either keeping or doing away with!
  21. Post 29 ~ The post that everyone has been waiting for!!! RACHEL’S WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER!!! WOOHOO!!!
  22. Post 30 ~ She booked her honeymoon! Check out where Art & Rachel are going!!!
  23. Post 31 ~ Wedding Bands! Soo pretty!!!
  24. Post 32 ~ Invitations
  25. Post 33 ~ Rachel’s Hairstyle Ideas | Part II
  26. Post 34 ~ Another Wedding DIY – Table Numbers
  27. Post 35 ~ Rachel’s Bridal Shower

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Which brings us to today’s post – ANOTHER DIY!!

“As I had said two weeks ago when writing about the table numbers.. I had planned to go to Michael’s to buy table numbers and a card box. So off to pick up Rebekah I went {I drag her along with everything 🙂 } We decided to go to Middletown so we would have the choice of Michael’s or AC Moore. {I honestly don’t remember if I had written any of this when talking about the table numbers, so I am sorry if I am repeating myself 🙂 } 
I went into both stores to check out the available card boxes.. The only box from both stores that I liked was $40.. And I don’t know if I have mentioned this before or not, but I am super cheap.. Like super cheap 🙂 I wasn’t in love with the box so I could not justify to myself spending $40 on it.
We happened to be walking through AC Moore and happened upon some decorative bird cages that were on sale.. On a side note, Rebekah has an obsession with birdcages.. But I was able to get a large bird cage for $12!! Much better than $40 🙂
So at a later date, Rebekah and I sat down to turn the bird cage into  a card box. We were not really too sure where we were going so we Pinterested {of course} some ideas. We had a bunch of leftover supplies from my bridal shower and such.. Twine, ribbon, flowers, burlap.. We tried a few different things before deciding on using some leftover burlap {from the table runners}, some flowers {from the centerpieces at my shower}, and paper {that will be used for my place cards} to complete the look. We did have to use a few different sheets of paper because I made Rebekah write the work “Cards” a million times before I decided I liked it 🙂

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Since everything else was repurposed from another date.. It really only cost $12!! AMAZING 🙂 

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Okay people.. We are in the final stretch! Two weeks from Friday! Ah! Scary! I have so many meetings I have to schedule with a million different people! Also, Arthur and I will be picking up our marriage license today!! :)”
~The Future Mrs. Bongiorno

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“Confessions Of A Future Bride” | Post 35

23 more days until Rachel’s big day!!! Woohooo!!!!

Oh My Goodness….. I was so surprised by my bridal shower 😉 I was semi-surprised.. I do love surprises, but I also love trying to figure out what everyone else but me knows. I’m a little {teeny, tiny bit} nosey 🙂  


I have to say, my ladies {and my man} did I really good job hiding it from me! And trying to trick me into thinking it was another date 🙂 They even went so far as to having Arthur create a fake invitation and leave it in plain site.. But little did they know, I did not even look at it! I like to figure out surprises by following the clues, not being told straight out 🙂
So anyway, my girls planned an awesome day for me and even got the help of my awesome boss to make the food.. I was really, truly shown how much everyone cares for me and how much they would do for me 🙂
My girls included some of my favorite bridal shower games including: Who knows Arthur best? and What’s in your purse? Unfortunately, I did not know who wins Arthur best.. But his mother won, so I guess I will take the loss to her 😉 Annddd I also did not win what’s in your purse; I moved over to a small purse from my massive one last year and had to condense 🙂
I received some great gifts!! My big gift, that I almost did not include on my registry, a roomba was given to me by my amazing girls and my mom 🙂 I love, love, love, love, love, love, love {times a million!!} my roomba! It is the best invention in the whole entire world.. I think I should get a cut from roomba because I tell everyone and anyone I meet that they need to get one 🙂 I also received a KitchenAid mixer from my {soon to be} mother in law! And tons and tons of amazing gifts.. Rachael Ray {my favorite} pots and pans, pyrex, towels, hampers, a waffle iron, a blender, a spice rack, a wine rack, comforters and more comforters {those who know me well, know that I have a weird love for blankets} .. just to name a few 🙂

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It was a super amazing day.. And now I am ready for the wedding.. Just kidding, I am totally not ready 🙂 AND TODAY IS JUNE 1ST!! WHERE ON EARTH DID THE TIME GO?!?!?!
~ The Future Mrs. Bongiorno

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