Innkeeper(s): Debbie & Dan Spear, Jennifer LaRock
Love is Sweet... 19 Jan 2015, 3:00 am
The antique look of the tag matches the color of the honey, and the tag's inscription offers a fun little rhyme: "Love is sweet. Thank you for making our day complete."
Make-Your-Own Bouquets 15 Jan 2015, 3:00 am
Here was a neat idea we saw recently: one of our brides invited her bridesmaids to make their own bouquets.
The florist delivered a bucket full of assorted flowers, all chosen by the bride to fit the wedding’s color scheme and style. The wedding coordinator set up the bucket in the bridal suite in the Lodge, and once the bridesmaids had all arrived, she invited them to each assemble their own bouquet.
Each bridesmaid had the opportunity to create a floral arrangement that reflected the bride’s vision while also reflecting each woman’s uniqueness.
Once the bridesmaids finished, each bouquet was placed in a mason jar full of water to keep the flowers fresh until it was time for everyone to make the walk down the aisle.
It was a wonderful way to add a splash of individuality to the festivities!
Register Now for Our 2015 Bridal Open House 12 Jan 2015, 3:00 am
Plans are already underway for our 2015 Bridal Open House. This year, we’ll celebrate Amour á Paris!
The Bridal Open House will be held on Sunday, March 8, 2015, from 12:00-4:00 p.m. We’ll showcase our venues, cottages, and preferred vendors.
Admission is free, but so that we can make sure Chef Brad prepares enough tasty appetizers for everyone, we’re asking people to register at LoveParisOpenHouse.eventbrite.com.
The Blue Jay Gang 8 Jan 2015, 3:00 am
We have had a raucous gang of blue jays running wild across the Ridge this winter. They’ve been here all fall—some ten or twelve of them—zipping around from tree to tree like a bunch of rowdy adolescents. Their antics have been a lot of fun to watch.
Blue jays are year-round residents in most of the eastern U.S. Even when it snows, they just hunker down and fluff up a little for insulation. Their blue feathers make a gorgeous contrast against the snow.
Of course, we’ve not had snow in these parts so far this winter (knock on wood). But even against the bare branches of the leafless trees, the jays appeared like little blue splashes.
Jays are usually loud and boisterous, but so far, this gang has pretty much kept quiet, at least while I’ve been out and about. I haven’t seen them mob any other birds at Debbie’s birdfeeders, either. For being a rowdy bunch, they’re behaving with pretty good manners.
My Brother is Rockin' It with RockIT Repair 6 Jan 2015, 6:28 pmRockIT Repair, was featured in the business section of the Free Lance-Star on Saturday. If you missed the article, you can see it online here.
John and his business partner, Jim Einhorn, started RockIT Repair two years ago. They started off by repairing cracked screens on cellphones, tablets, Kindles, and laptops, but they've been growing ever since, doing more and more types of repairs. "We repair electronic devices from any manufacturer," they say. Business has been booming.
Last week, John and Jim completed work on renovations to their storefront, located at 1319 Lafayette Blvd. in Fredericksburg. On January 22 at 4:00 p.m., they'll have an official ribbon cutting to celebrate.
Congratulations to John and everyone else at RockIt Repair!
Busy, Busy, Busy with Many Brides-to-Be 5 Jan 2015, 3:00 am
The holidays are always one of the most popular times of year to get engaged—and that means the first week of January is always busy at Stevenson Ridge. Elizabeth, our head wedding coordinator, has been fielding calls from new brides-to-be who are now on the hunt for the perfect wedding venue.
As I’d mentioned a few days ago, 2014 was our best year yet for weddings, with nearly sixty couples coming to Stevenson Ridge for their big day. And looking ahead to 2015, we already have nearly forty weddings on the books. We even have a few scheduled for 2016!
Traditionally, the most popular months for weddings are May and June in the spring and September and October in the fall. However, last year, April and August also proved to be popular. And of course, there are always a few December weddings that incorporate a beautiful holiday theme.
Aside from Christmas/New Year's, the other big time of year for engagements is, of course, Valentine’s Day. That’s what makes January and February “wedding season.” There are bridal shows and open houses aplenty. Be sure to come find us at the D.C. Wedding Experience on January 19 at the Patriot Center. We’ll also be at “The Big Day” Bridal Show on February 22 at the Fredericksburg Expo Center. Plus, we have our own Bridal Open House coming up on Sunday, March 8. (Details on that are coming soon....)
In the meantime, I’m encouraging Elizabeth to eat well and get plenty of rest between all those phone calls—it’s going to be a busy year!
New Year's Resolutions 2 Jan 2015, 3:00 am
The new year offers the opportunity for fresh starts and new beginnings, and like so many folks, those of us at Stevenson Ridge have made a few resolutions for the year ahead.
Debbie (Co-Owner): My resolution is to de-clutter—and I’m starting today, cleaning cupboards!
Elizabeth (Head Wedding Coordinator): I plan to focus on enjoying the little moments. Last year, I focused on fitness, and the year before that, I focused on managing my stress. I’ve been able to stay dedicated to those things, too.
Brad (Executive Chef): I plan to expand our menu offerings. I’ll be spending time in January and February cooking up some new entrées and appetizers, especially.
Casey (Sous Chef): I want to focus more on my kids and be a better dad. I try to do that already, but it’s something I always want to be better at.
Gail (Office Assistant): My resolution is to set aside more time to spend with family and friends, doing some relaxing things like having tea or coffee and catching up with people I haven’t seen in a while.
Chris (Historian-in-Residence): I’m getting back into a daily exercise routine. That sounds so cliché, I know! I miss it when I don’t work out, though, so I’m really looking forward to getting back into a regular routine.
As for me? I’m hoping to manage my time more effectively. This is always a huge challenge for me because there’s always so much going on at the Ridge, and particularly with the inn, the schedule frequently changes at the last minute. It’s also challenging because I love my job so much, so it never really feels like work—which makes it easy to get lost in what I’m doing.
Happy New Year! 1 Jan 2015, 3:00 amHappy New Year, everyone!
2014 was our best year yet at Stevenson Ridge, and it would not have been possible without all our friends, brides and grooms, guests, and visitors.
I'm also grateful for the dedicated work of our wedding coordinators, office staff, housekeepers, event staff, landscapers, and innkeepers.
Best wishes to everyone for a wonderful 2015!
All Is Ducky 31 Dec 2014, 11:50 amWe get a lot of great guests here at the Ridge, but for the past week, we've had some particularly neat visitors—and they've been staying in the pond!
We've had a trio of hooded mergansers paddling around: two males and a female. They've been very shy and, so, hard to get a good photo of:
Mergansers are a type of duck best known for the gorgeous white crests on the males. In profile, the plumage looks like big white mohawk hairstyles fanning out from the backs of their little black heads. They also have streaks of white on their shoulders and breasts, and they have thin black bills.
The females are a dusty brown and black, with some lighter downy brown on their heads. That's pretty typical in the bird world: the males have all the fancy feathers so that they can attract mates while females have drabber plumage, which makes for better camouflage so they can better protect their young.
As usual, we also have some geese in the pond, too. We had as many as thirty over the weekend, but today it looks like there's only about a dozen of them. The temperatures are crisp, and there's a thin crust of ice in the shaded end of the pond, but otherwise the sun is out. Apparently, if you're a waterfowl, it's a good day for a paddle!
2014's Final Wedding Weekend 28 Dec 2014, 11:18 am
While many people have the opportunity to enjoy some “down time” between Christmas and New Year’s, we’ve had a busy weekend with TWO weddings.
One lucky couple tied the knot in a small, intimate affair at the Riddick House on Saturday. The second couple brought an international flair to the Lodge on Sunday with immediate family members who came in all the way from Central America.
One of our grooms is getting ready to deploy overseas, so he will definitely be in our thoughts as the New Year dawns.
We had nearly sixty couples get married at Stevenson Ridge in 2014 (including me and Chris!). Congratulations to all of our couples, and all the best to them for a wonderful 2015.