I don’t know if there are enough words to describe how much I love my husband, how I love him so completely, so deeply. How he teaches me patience and perspective. How we encourage each other and tell the other that it’s okay to be afraid, take risks and want more. I selfishly love this time – when it’s just me and him (and the dog). I know we’ll look back at these few years and reminisce about the weekend projects, the adventures and the Sundays spent cuddling, when time was just something to fill. I can’t help but ask for more years just like this – two years is a scratch on the surface, and I want more.
Since I was one of the first in my friend group to get married, I often get called on for advice when a friend begins planning his or her wedding. Here are the top five things I tell my friends again and again. As advice goes, you don’t always have to agree with it or take it, but these are my personal lessons learned.
1. It’s not about you.
You might think a wedding is for the bride and groom, but you’d be wrong. Just like a funeral isn’t for the deceased, it’s for the grieving. This is for those celebrating, those uniting because of the two of you. This may be the only time in your life where your entire family is together. In the future it will be about what holiday is spent at what in-law’s – enjoy being with everyone you love in one place.
2. Hire a day of planner.
I can’t recommend this enough. I’ve been to a lot of weddings of DIY brides, where they plan to do everything themselves and hang their families with to-do lists. There is nothing wrong with this, unless it interferes with their enjoyment of the wedding day itself.
Sure, have your dad build you a dance floor, have your aunt do your alterations, emboss the hell out of those invites, but do not have Cousin Shirley pass out toasting drinks. If she’s important enough to be there, she’s important enough to toast right along with everyone else. And you know all those decorations you made by hand and put up? Someone has to take those down. The same people who got up at the crack of dawn to help put them up. The people who care about you the most are the ones willing to put in the work. Don’t let them. These people deserve to be 100% present on your wedding day, let someone else carry the burden of the details and the schedule.
3. You’re not wearing this dress for one day
You’re wearing it for the rest of your life. If you’re spending any money on photos, I bet it’s because you’re going to be printing these off, gifting them to friends and hanging them in your home. This dress will be on your walls, your kids will ask to see them, your aunt will pull them out when her friends come over. These pictures will immortalize your gown and you’ll be haunted by it. Pick a damn good one.
4. Take pictures of your dress
When shopping take photos of you wearing the dress before you decide. You may love the idea of one, but the subtle lace might not show up in pictures and instead be a little blah. I was split between two dresses but when looking at cell phone photos, there was a clear winner. Again, these photos will be around forever, so make sure it photographs just as pretty as you remember it.
5. Photos take longer than you think they will
Schedule a ton of time for photos – a ton. Also, write down in detail who you want your photos with, do this for your family photos and everyone else. I got a lot of group bridesmaid shots, but missed out on getting them one-on-one, this was a big bummer when I got them back (in defense, I didn’t know I wanted this until after the fact). If you can manage, schedule a day after photo shoot with your husband, it makes it so you can spend all the time you want capturing great shots, with that handsome fella, in that gorgeous dress.
I’m sure I could come up with many many more do’s and don’t’s, but I’ll leave it with these five for now. Do you have any wedding advice you feel like you give over and over again? Please share!
(psst, if you’re in the midst of planning your wedding, check Seattle BHLDN’s wedding fair this Thursday, April 23, 2015 it’s bound to give great ideas and serve as great eye candy!)
I feel like this year is the first year I’ve been truly inspired and refreshed by the turning of the calendar. Our house has been a wreck for weeks. Our house is small and the work on the kitchen floors meant a constant mess we had to live in. dust, tools, appliances in the dining room. We decorated for holidays and I think that this year we probably shouldn’t have. Our home was constantly in flux, a temporary state of chaos that stretched into eternity. With the move-in and out of decor it added a lot to our stress list. But save for a few finishing touches our floor is done, holiday decor is stored for another year and we have finally stabilized. Whew! As much as I love the holidays, I have never been more happy to be back to normal life.
With the new year we’ve taken the chance to sit down, evaluate and make some changes.
- We decided to go vegan again, at least for a few months. When we were on a vegan diet, we ate more at home, were more inspired to cook and didn’t have to think too hard about what was ‘good’ and what was ‘bad’. I’m excited to feel the energy, loose the pounds and lethargy.
- Second, we have been lucky that we’ve been able to pay for Billy’s flight education out of pocket thus far. But we never budgeted for it and just made it work; we’ve restructured our budget to add in an official aviation education line, I feel so much more confidant in the future now that there’s a plan and goal in mind.
What changes are you making for the new year?
I feel like the clock speeds up in December. I want to soak in every little bit of Christmas and yet the days fly by and disappear.
I’m a self-proclaimed city girl – but that doesn’t mean I don’t love the country too. The state of Washington is just amazing, while the Seattle boats and skyscrapers have their allure, the rolling hills and grassy plains have an air of magic to them. We went on a little road trip last weekend to visit my brother. His family moved from Maui to a small farm a few months ago, seeking a slower, organic life. We ate fresh strawberries and spinach from the garden and the meat eaters ate meat they had raised. It’s a delicious life, where 9 to 5 doesn’t rule your life, where family comes first and the dirt never leaves your fingernails.