Today’s Mini Moon feature comes from one of our favorite photographers in the South, Nina & Wes… 

When I first came to Kentucky from Upstate New York, I knew virtually nothing about it. I knew that some fried chicken restaurant was started there by some colonel….I knew that the people spoke with that southern drawl that we northerners so often poked fun at….but beyond those few trivial things, Kentucky was a mystery to me.



Nearly 20 years later, I now proudly call myself a Kentuckian. I went to college here. I got my first career job here, and I met my husband (of almost 12 glorious years!) here. I even seemed to collect a little bit of my own southern drawl here…and I’m okay with that. And aside from a three year stint in South Carolina, I have called Central Kentucky, home, all this time (we tried giving South Carolina a chance, but we missed our beautiful Kentucky home too much, and she welcomed us back with open arms).

Some people may wonder why they should make a visit to our small city of Lexington, Kentucky. Well, Lexington is known largely for basketball and horses. So let’s start there.

University of Kentucky men’s basketball is more than just a sport here. It is a tradition. It is a legacy. Some may even call it a dynasty (I know I do!). Kentucky Basketball is a way of life. We are the winningest basketball program in history, and arguably the best program since the inception of collegiate basketball (okay…so maybe I am a fan). One of the first outfits a baby of a Kentucky fan receives, is a Wildcat Onesie. It is inevitable.



When it comes to Kentucky basketball and its fans, there are no strangers. You could be walking the streets of Jerusalem wearing your favorite Wildcat t-shirt, and inevitably someone will shout out, “Go Big Blue!”, because Kentucky fans span the globe, and when they find you, you are considered a friend (this may have happened to us while we were in Israel). When you make a trip to Lexington, try to visit during basketball season, and see our beloved Rupp Arena covered in a sea of blue, as fans come out to support their Cats, who are basically Kentucky royalty. There is nothing like it in college basketball. Yes, we have some crazy fans out there (what team doesn’t?!), but for the most part, you will find that Kentucky fans, while passionate, are a happy lot (especially when we are winning), and will welcome you in to enjoy a game with them. So you get my point….We love the Kentucky Wildcats.



Horses. Everywhere you go in and around Lexington, you will see horses. There is a reason they call Kentucky the Horse Capital of the World. They are beautiful and majestic creatures, and they are the royalty of the animal world here in Kentucky. You will find that many horses here in the Lexington area have better homes than we do. I’m only a little jealous. No visit to Lexington is complete without a visit to Keeneland Race Course, which has been running races here since 1936. Keeneland has made appearances in movies such as Sea Biscuit and Secretariat, and its spring meet offers several preps for the Kentucky Derby. So if you come to Lexington in October or April, you need to make a visit to Keeneland’s live race meets. You may just meet a future Triple Crown Winner. If you visit the track any day of the week from 6-10am, you can watch the trainers/jockeys circling the tracks with their equine partners, training for their next race. And don’t forget to make a stop at the Track Kitchen. You just may find yourself eating breakfast next to a famous jockey.



And right next door to Keeneland, you could stop by and snap a shot of our one and only castle, The Castle Post. But that’s all you’ll get out of it. It’s not open to the public, so unless you’ve scheduled a meeting there, or pay top dollar for a wedding or special even there, you won’t be getting past those turrets.



And just past the castle, you’ll find old Pisgah Presbyterian Church, which was built in 1784. It is a beautiful old church, and draws many visitors from all over as it is surrounded by breathtaking views of vast horse farms and the roads are lined with Kentucky’s historic dry-laid limestone rock fences.



So we’ve covered horses and basketball (although to be honest, I could go on about those two things for days!). Let’s move on to the every day of life here in Lexington, KY.

Kentucky summers are hot. Not only are they hot, but they are sticky. If you have kids and you need some relief from the heat, you could drive to the outskirts of Lexington and head to the Jessamine County Aquatics Center. They have slides and pools for all ages and its very affordable. But if free is your game, then you can simply park near the courthouse downtown, where you will find fountains in the square, where adults and children alike have fun in the crossing spurts of water.



After cooling off in the fountains you can drive a short distance over to Manchester Rd. (passing some super cool art work on the way), one of the newer food scenes in Lexington, and grab a scoop of delicious, hand crafted ice cream at Lexington’s own Crank & Boom. Honey & Bourbon flavor is my favorite!



Once you finish every last bit of that creamy treat, take a 50 foot journey over to Kentucky Knows. There you will meet Tony. He is a passionate artisan who takes extreme pride in all that he does. He loves taking his customers through the history of his company. He takes old bourbon barrels and brings them back to life by turning them into functional pieces, such as bottle openers, cutting boards, plaques and Lazy Susans. And, as he is very quick to point out, he is not there to push his products on any customer. He is there to share his passion for what he does, and integrity in business. You will not be disappointed with a visit to the little gem. If you have a mind that loves to learn, and a heart for people, you will love meeting Tony and hearing his story. He also makes delicious bourbon infused coffee beans, as well as bourbon infused charr that will bring your grilled burgers and steak to life.



If you’re still in the mood for libations –  you don’t want to miss taking a pub crawl tour on a 15 passenger pedaler!



Now for the food. There are so many amazing restaurants in Lexington, and it seems more and more are popping up every day. Here are a couple of my favorites.

National Provisions. This restaurant is housed within the walls of a former soft-drink bottling plant at National and Walton Avenues. It includes a bakery, brasserie-style restaurant, Beer Hall, wine shop and a large market with fresh, locally produced food and delicacies flown in from around the world. This place is full of atmosphere, and gives you a taste of Europe which most certainly comes from the French owner. This place wins my heart with its brightly lit glass cases, filled with pastries and fresh meats and cheeses!



Wines on Vine. This restaurant is my newest (new to me, but it’s been around for years) favorite in Lexington. I could seriously eat here every day! The owner has made this place feel like home. You will see regulars here all the time, because they are treated like family. If you love wine, the sommelier, Mick, is top notch. And the chef, Bryan, is amazing! He will come out and visit, and take special care of you. Be sure to get the cheese plate when you visit. The raspberry chutney is like christmas in a ramekin, and when paired with the cheese and baguette, heaven on earth will be experienced. And for the main course, the Kentucky Proud Filet Mignon is food bliss for my soul.

And then if you want to finish off the night with a little entertainment, try the Kentucky Theatre (originally called simply, the Kentucky), a Lexington landmark since 1922. You can watch current blockbusters, or smaller independent films at this beautiful old theater.



If you want to venture just a little ways outside of Lexington, you should visit Shaker Village. This is one of my favorite spots in Central Kentucky, and it is home to about 3,000 acres of gorgeous Kentucky landscape. It is home to 34 original Shaker structures, and the largest National Historical Landmark in Kentucky. It is a great spot to take your family and learn about the way of life of the Shakers, including activities like sheep shearing, wagon rides, and soap making. It is also home to a beautiful restaurant, The Trustees’ Table, which serves seed-to-table southern food, meaning much of their food comes straight from their land and the surrounding farms.



And finally, before you leave Lexington, and before you leave Kentucky, make a few stops on the Bourbon Trail (if not all nine stops!). We Kentuckians are proud of our horses, we are proud of our basketball, and we are proud of our bourbon! Take a tour of Woodford Reserve Distillery and you might just see the guide shed a tear as he passionately explains the history of their bourbon, and all the drive and passion that went into making it a reality. Makers Mark is another favorite of mine, where you can even dip your own bottle of bourbon into that iconic red wax. The distilleries are often found on beautiful pieces of Kentucky landscape and the scenic drives alone are worth the visit.



And if you are just passing through Lexington, if nothing else, hopefully you’ll catch a glimpse of one of our magical Kentucky sunsets. I’ve traveled the world many times, and I’ve seen the sun set over many different landscapes and oceans. But this is where I find the most special kind of beautiful sunset, and it’s what always calls me home when I’ve been far away.


We hope to see you soon in Lexington, a hidden gem in the South.


This Mini Moon post was written and photographed by Nina & Wes.  See more Mini Moon posts right HERE. 




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There’s nothing like a refreshing gimlet and this week Paula LeDuc Fine Catering is here with their amazing Garden Gimlet to add to our signature cocktail series.  Photos by Josh Gruetzmacher.



The Garden Gimlet


•  Glass – small coupe (or any glass with 4.5 ounce capacity)
•  Method – muddle; shake & fine-strain
•  Garnish – thyme sprig
•  4 large basil leaves
•  .5 oz. bar syrup
•  Muddle lightly
•  .5 oz. fresh lime juice
•  1.5 oz. organic gin or vodka

Instructions: lightly muddle the basil leaves with bar syrup in the bottom of an empty mixing glass. Add lime juice and vodka. Add ice last. Cap the mixing glass with a shaker tin and shake hard for 10 seconds. Strain through a small, fine mesh strainer (helps catch those little pieces of basil and ice chips) into your cocktail glass. Garnish with a lime wheel.

Sip. Savor. Repeat.


We’d love to see your creations! Share your homemade Garden Gimlet on Instagram and tag us @snippetandink for a chance to be featured.


Josh Gruetzmacher and Paula LeDuc Fine Catering are Snippet & Ink Select vendors. 

This post contains affiliate links. 

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To celebrate their nuptials, Brien and Leigh Ann knew they wanted to keep things simple – as the bride says, “We didn’t want a ‘wedding.’ We wanted a Dinner and a Marriage.” What a great way to think about it! They chose a the stunning Sunstone Winery for their venue, the bride carried an armful of olive branches instead of a traditional bouquet, and dinner was served in a candlelit wine cave.


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Did you have something old, new, borrowed, blue?  I did! Old and borrowed was an heirloom bracelet of my mother’s, the dress was new, and the shoes were blue.

What was the best advice you received as a bride?  To try and remain present throughout all of the festivities because it goes by so fast. Also, to let it all go come Friday morning. I’ve done what I can and the vendors will execute the rest. I did and I’m so thankful! I truly enjoyed the ride and every minute of it.


Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink
Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink


What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Don’t get lost in the details; it’s about the marriage and nothing else matters.

If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently?  I would have hired a videographer. I’m terribly sad not to have it to watch.


Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink


“When we started talking about our wedding we decided we didn’t want a ‘wedding.’ We wanted a Dinner and a Marriage,” says Leigh Ann. “We enjoy dining and wine and wanted that to translate into an incredible meal with fantastic wine shared among family and friends. Naturally, that would be the celebration of the marriage but we didn’t want a wedding per se with all of the rote traditions (bridal party, tight-round bouquet, bouquet toss etc.). We didn’t want any of that; just a marriage and an elegant dinner to celebrate.”


Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink
Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink


The Ceremony

“We’ve been going up to Santa Ynez because my family has a home there. We wanted an outdoor venue with oak trees and beautiful surroundings, and Sunstone has all that and a wine cave too. Plus Brien proposed to me there! It was our first and only choice for our wedding.”


Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink
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Your ceremony in three words.  Meaningful, intimate and warm

Who officiated your ceremony?  Henry Kaney, our pastor, was a long-time family friend, who had also married my sister.

What was your ceremony music? Readings?  Anthony Ybarra strummed Canon in D on his guitar, and my sister-in-law read a poem called These Hands.

What were your vows like?  We exchanged traditional vows, in addition to writing our own to each other.


Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink


What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  We asked our guests to stand with us during the ceremony and I have never felt more surrounded in love in my entire life.

Is there anything else that you’d like to share about your wedding ceremony?  We asked our guests to put away their phones during the ceremony and remain present with us. You could feel the love, hearts and presence of everyone there.


Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink
Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink


The Reception

“Our reception was amazing, warm and relaxed. It was a warm, summer’s eve surrounded by the beautiful Santa Ynez Valley and our family and friends. The food was amazing, the ambiance spectacular and the band was fantastic. We were relaxed and thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it.”


Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink


What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  The surrounding environment which we loved! It’s filled with old oak and olive trees and I knew I could never compete with it so I simply tried to complement it.

What was your first dance song?  Ho Hey by the Lumineers

What was your wedding menu?  We had an amazing chef who created shared plates and a family style meal. It was very contemporary with a farm-to-table menu. Our guests still talk about the food and go back to our chef’s restaurant (Industrial Eats) repeatedly. We do too.

What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  A very small wedding cake with lots and lots of little pastries, cookies, etc. There was not a bite left and Brien and I didn’t get any! We actually went back to the bakery the next day to buy a box of what we’d served so we could have some!

Did you have a signature cocktail?  We made sangria from Sunstone’s chardonnay for the cocktail hour.


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Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink


Are there any DIY details you’d like to tell us about?  Because we were inspired by the environment and because we love trees, our friends made slices from tree stumps which we then burned the names of formative places in our relationship into them.

What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  Amplified music was not allowed after 10pm so we asked our band to come into the cave and just play acoustically. They said they’d never done it before but it was the most amazing memory from the whole evening. The cave was candlelit and we all sang together and swayed arm-in-arm. I’ll never forget it as long as I live.


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Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink Michelle Warren | Snippet & Ink
Photography: Michelle Warren / Venue: Sunstone Winery & Villa in Santa Ynez, California / Event Planning & Design: Tara Bassi Party Design / Floral Design: Toast Santa Barbara / Dress: J Mendel / Shoes: Jimmy Choo / Veil: A Stitch in Time / Suit, Shirt: Hugo Boss / Shoes: Ferragamo / Stationery: Minted / Hair, Makeup: Sheila Raye Stone / Rentals: Town & Country / Officiant: Henry Kaney / Ceremony Music: Anthony Ybarra / Reception Music: Ry Bradley Band / Catering: New West Catering / Cake: Solvang Bakery
  • Intimate Wedding at Sunstone Winery by Michelle Warren

    4 August 2015
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    We’re kicking off the week with Tiana and Bora’s Oakland wedding inspired by the style of the 1940’s Cotton Club. If you’re looking for a touch of retro inspiration, you’ve come to the right place!


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    Tiana’s accessories fit perfectly the 1940’s Cotton Club theme that she and Bora followed for their wedding – they even asked guests to dress in 1940’s attire to get everyone to feel part of the day.


    Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink


    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  The best advice I received was to continuously show appreciation for my bridal party and during the wedding steal 15 minutes of private time with my new husband.

    What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  My advice to couples is to not let planning interfere with the beauty of being engaged. Also make sure your wedding is a reflection of you both and not someone else.


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    Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink


    Do you have any budget tips for other brides?  From a budget standpoint I would suggest tapping into creative people within your network of friends and family. Is someone you know a florist or a baker? Use them! It will help you save in the end.

    If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently?  Nothing! I really loved it.


    Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink


    Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  Choosing The Terrace Room in Oakland for our wedding was a no brainer. It tied in with our 1940’s Cotton Club theme and looked out on Oakland’s most cherished site, Lake Merritt. We wanted to limit commute time for our guest so we decided to have the ceremony and the reception in the same location. Keeping everything at The Terrace Room maximized time and saved on cost.


    Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink
    Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink


    The Ceremony

    “We both agreed that our ceremony needed to be quick but meaningful. We created our own template and made our own rules. It was important that our wedding be custom and a reflection of us as a couple”


    Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink
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    Your ceremony in three words.  Short, sentimental, non-traditional.

    Who officiated your ceremony?  Our officiant was my aunt. Family participation was key for us and my aunt was a crucial part of my upbringing. We couldn’t think of anyone more suitable.

    What was your ceremony music? 
    Processional (groom and parents): “Night & Day” by Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald.
    Processional (bride and bridal party): “Dream A Little Dream” by Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald.
    Recessional: “LOVE” by Nat King Cole

    What were your ceremony readings?  We asked Bora’s sister Seda to give a reading and she surprised us by reading a quote from Bob Marley. It was flawless.

    What were your vows like?  Our vows were so incredibly different and in my opinion equally powerful. We both wrote them ourselves. I started writing mine a year before the ceremony while riding the New York metro one day; Bora wrote his while out on a terrace staring at the Oakland skyline, the night before the wedding.


    Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink


    What was your favorite thing about your ceremony?  The best part of the ceremony to me were Bora’s vows. He got about 15 seconds into them and began to cry uncontrollably, but through the tears he sang Bill Wither’s “Lovely Day” to me. It moved me beyond deeply. I felt so enveloped in love – everyone else disappeared at that moment.


    Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink
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    The Reception

    “Our reception was a beautiful blur and an absolute blast! Lots of laughs, tears, and smiles all around. Everyone’s energy was palpable and we both felt immense joy. We wanted our guests to engage and feel part of our important day, so we created a 1940’s themed wedding and asked our guests to dress up. We offered inspiration from musicians like Jospehine Baker and Duke Ellington and it worked!”


    Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink


    What was your first dance song?  We danced to “So Amazing” by Luther Vandross.

    What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  My favorite moment was dancing with my father. We’ve never danced together before. I will treasure that moment forever.

    What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  We’re not big on cake so we enjoyed personal banana caramel cheesecakes and eclairs. I’m obsessed with cheesecakes from Divine Slice and Bora can never pass up an éclair. EVER!

    Please tell us about any other special details or moments from your reception.  Another incredibly moment was when our fathers gave speeches. My father told a story from my childhood when I ran around the house with a roll of toilet paper. Bora’s father doesn’t speak English so as he delivered his speech in Turkish one of Bora’s cousins translated for him. I loved the dynamic.


    Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink Your Dream Photo | Snippet & Ink
    Photography: Your Dream Photo / Venue, Catering: The Terrace Room in Oakland, California / Officiant: Mary Ella Davis / Dress, Jewelry: Burnbaum and Bullock / Shoes: Elie Tahari / Bridesmaid Dresses: Dessy / Suit, Shirt, Tie, Groomsmen Attire: Fabrika / Shoes: Aldo / Stationery: Zazzle / Floral Design: Nicki Martin / Music: DJ Crimson / Cake, Dessert: Divin Slice Cheesecakes, La Farine Bakery

    Dessy and Zazzle are Snippet and Ink sponsors. 

  • Oakland Wedding at The Terrace Room by Your Dream Photo

    3 August 2015
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