September 2023: A season of transition

My musings…

 I always think of September as a transitional month, even more so than January. It’s the time kids go back to school and a sign that summer has ended and fall starts up. Warm weather *should* start to cool. For a lot of businesses, it’s the kickoff to a busy season after a slower summer of vacationing and early-release Fridays.

My transition is going from somewhat sane to totally insane! 😉 Although I joke, it has been quite the chaos – the good kind – for these past couple of months. Just like many other businesses, our busy season is starting to tick up. While our first event isn’t until October, we have received more inquiries, tours, styled shoots, bookings, and planning sessions with booked couples in these past couple of weeks.

I have also been neck-deep in helping to plan a multi-day forum for business owners through my volunteer work with Women for Success Nonprofit. If you do not follow us on Instagram, where I have been posting excitingly and incessantly about this forum, you may not know that I am a board member for Women for Success and that our annual conference, titled the Female Founders Forum 2023, is NEXT WEEK.

 I joined Women for Success earlier this year at the encouragement of my close friend and entrepreneurial queen, Alejandrina Aguilar. Although the logic side of my brain screamed that my plate was full enough as is with two new businesses, a new marriage, and stepmom duties, the emotional side craved the exact community of business owners helping business owns, women collaborating with women that this organization fosters.

 In fact, one of the reasons I left my corporate wealth management position in January to launch my own financial planning practice (coming soon!) was because of communities like Women for Success where I was inspired and motivated by other women to find the courage to take the dive into entrepreneurship. Owning a business can feel lonely, but it doesn’t have to be.

 This forum, September 20-22 at the Coral Gables Woman’s Club in Miami, is the culmination of the efforts put forth throughout the year by Women for Success in its mission to support female founders through free workshops, resources, and grants. Business owners who attend the conference will hear from industry experts on topics to help them uplevel and grow their business, have ample opportunities to connect and collaborate with other founders and funders, and unwind over bubbly in The Rich Girl Mindset Lounge’s sip & shop experiential market.

 It’s going to be high energy and loads of fun, and I’m so proud of the work our committee has put into building this forum. If you’re in Miami and would like to join us, I have a 40% off discount code for our TGWM community: TGWM40.

Now, enough of my musings for this month and onto the venue. With feedback from those of you who graciously filled out my survey from last month, I have added in a new section to our monthly newsletter that talks about what we’ve been up to in the venue!

 Happenings around TGWM…

 Events: While we shut down in the summer (mid-June through the end of August) for events due to Miami’s awful summer weather and our need to have time to do improvements around the venue, we did have one gorgeous wedding in July. It was hot and humid, as expected, but it was stunning, nonetheless. We also just wrapped up an incredible gothic-inspired styled shoot designed by Nathalie of A Very Lovely Wedding and Margarita of Forever Belle Fleur Design. It was a luxurious, romantic, sexy, unique spin to a traditional wedding scape. Finally, we have had more couples and families take advantage of the venue for photoshoots to capture some of their treasured milestones!

Upgrades: We finished landscaping the front of the venue where guests first enter and our valet sets up! Before, it was filled with shabby looking grass, and our valet would have to pitch a pop-up tent. Now, the area has been landscaped with a variety of plants added, gravel and mulch has replaced the grass, and a pavilion was built to give our valet a more convenient, nicer-looking space to welcome guests. We also added new mulch throughout the venue. Finally, Mike has begun to make additions to the bar. This summer was so hot, humid, and rainy, it made it quite challenging for him to work long days outside, but the facelift has commenced.

 Inventory: We added some fun things to our inventory list! We got in a load of “forever” candles, which burn a real flame but use fluid instead of wax to burn, allowing them to theoretically last forever. We also added to the inventory some “forever” floral arrangements in white and sage green for the couple who is on a tight budget. Finally, my brother and his wife, who just celebrated their wedding in Michigan in early August, also kindly donated these lovely wood carving centerpieces to our inventory. (For our clients: I will be updating the inventory list shortly!)

Offers: One of our fabulous preferred caterers, Table for Two Catering & Events, is allowing couples to put down a smaller deposit on catering reservations this month, which can be supremely helpful when you’re trying to book multiple vendors at once and need to place multiple deposits.

 Updates for TGWM…

 These next months, we plan to:

  • Host at least two more styled shoots
  • Continue to work on some of the projects we have around the venue, such as the Live Oak Bar and the Woods Tribute Library
  • Officially launch our new website along with some amazing resources and materials for party hosts and engaged couples
  • Brainstorm ideas for hosting more community events in 2023 + 2024
  • Share more tips and advice on our Instagram page
  • Get our Pinterest page back up and running (this has been on here for MONTHS…any Pinterest tips out there for someone who is dragging their feet on this?!)

 Our Asks…

 This wouldn’t be a community space without the help from, well, our community! If you can assist us with any of the following, we’d greatly appreciate it.

  • If you have been to our venue and enjoyed your experience, a review for us would go a very long way! If you feel inclined, these are the sites on which we get the most traffic: Google, Wedding Wire, and TheKnot.
  • Please follow us on our social media pages: Instagram (@thegardenswm) and Facebook.
  • Please engage (share, like, comment, save) with our posts on social media. Let us know if there is any content you’d like to see more of from us!
  • Help us brainstorm events we can host in our space outside of private parties (e.g., wellness events, art galleries, concerts, gaming events, etc.).
  • Book a tour if you’re in the area and would like to see our space!

 Thanks for tuning in this month!

-Emily, Co-Founder, The Gardens of Weber Manor