Dangerously Daydreaming

"All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible." ~ T. E. Lawrence

The Soon-To-Be-Bride Survival Guide

‘Tis the season, and no, not Christmas. It’s that time of year when lovely ladies are getting engaged, wedding planning is in the air, and Pinterest has bulked up their servers to withstand the onslaught of DIY centerpieces being pinned.

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With my own wedding just recently behind me*, I wanted to share some things I learned from the experience – some of these I figured out the hard way, some were passed on to me from wiser women. May your wedding day be everything you dreamed! And I hope these tips help.

  • Decide what really matters. This is a great one to figure out with your fiance. As I was planning my own wedding, my husband and I realized that a lot of wedding traditions didn’t mean anything special to us. Keep the things that are important to you both (and anyone who’s helping foot the bill) and don’t sweat the rest of it.
  • Don’t DIY everything. Be kind to yourself with this one. Take a look at all the things you’re planning to make for your wedding and then figure out what you can actually do. There are some irresistably cute ideas out there but don’t overbook yourself. Planning a wedding and all the other activities that go with it is stressful enough. And if you have narrowed down what you can really DIY, make it a party and ask some good friends or family to help you. It’ll make it much more fun and you’ll get to create some wonderful memories with the ones you love.
  • This day is NOT about you. This goes against the grain of everything you see and read on bridal sites and in magazines. Your guy is a key part of your wedding day and it’s a major milestone in his life too, so make it about “us”. Try to include him in some of the decision making, consider his opinions, and let this day reflect who you two are as a couple. He may not want to be involved with every detail, but I’d bet he has some ideas and wants to help.
  • This may not be the best day of your life. Sometimes it feels like everything hinges on this one day. Don’t let the hype of your wedding day overwhelm you. You have so many precious and priceless memories behind you and there are so many incredible moments ahead of you. The “perfection” of this day does not set the tone for your relationship or your future, so take a deep breath. It will be beautiful, memorable, and will springboard you into so many other spectacular life moments – the birth of a child, an epic adventure, a timeless love – your future is bright!
  • Don’t break the bank. I know that gorgeous, designer dress is tempting, and who wouldn’t love to have that sweet, live band for their reception. But going into massive debt is a rough way to start out your married life together. Make a budget and stick to it. Your future self will thank you.
  • Get a day-of coordinator. Hiring a wedding coordinator might be out of your budget but a day-of coordinator is critical. If money is an issue, find a trusted and competent friend to help you on your wedding day. Have her (or him) help keep you on schedule, hang on to the important documents (read: marriage license, vendor contracts, etc.), and run interference with any difficult guests or vendors. This will free you to enjoy the day, your hubby, and your guests. Give a gift as a “thank you”.
  • Let go. Realize right now some of your perfect planning will come to naught on your wedding day. It’s just the nature of a large event that involves lots of people and details (take it from someone who has professionally planned large events). Things may not all go as you envisioned, something will slip through the cracks, so take a deep breath and choose to enjoy yourself anyway. Besides, no one else will notice that one tiny detail that was out of place. Soak up this day, treasure the memories, and have fun!
  • Three Things to Remember: All you really and truly need on your wedding day is your man, your marriage license, and the rings. Everything else is an awesome bonus, so celebrate! And congrats!!!

Any other married folks out there have words of wisdom for future brides?

Our Las Vegas Wedding on 11/15/13

* J and I were married on Friday morning, November 15th, 2013 in a small chapel in downtown Las Vegas with 25 of our family and friends in attendance. We had our reception at the Hard Rock Cafe and spent all weekend celebrating our nuptials  and J’s 30th birthday with our guests before roadtripping through Nevada, Utah, and Arizona for our honeymoon.

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7 comments on “The Soon-To-Be-Bride Survival Guide

  1. storiesbywilliams
    March 6, 2014

    Sage advise, and oh-so not bridezilla-y!

    • Audrey
      March 7, 2014

      After being a bride, I started to realize that “bridezilla” can simply be a poor woman who’s taken on too much, is worried about so many details, and completely stressed out. It can be rough out there!

      • storiesbywilliams
        March 7, 2014

        It sure can and I’ve seen it happen. My good friend was a bit useless when he and his wife were marrying, and our mutual best friend became a total dick just because he had to be Best Man. Cost him his relationship at the time too. But of course, this is also why I have no pity for brides who can afford to do it all their way, hire all the help they need, and still find the time to take it all out on everyone around them.

  2. Shay
    March 7, 2014

    This is definitely fantastic advice as I am planning a wedding. I definitely think that we let too many other people get swept up in our moment and yet, its just a moment between Chad, me and God. Love this post!

  3. whatimeant2say
    March 9, 2014

    I think you covered all of the bases!

  4. Troy at Ad-libbed
    March 10, 2014

    Well said. One should never let the details get in the way. :)

  5. betunada
    March 17, 2014

    well, not having been a bride (yet!) — i still don’t think you’ve left anything out. you got it covered, kid!

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This entry was posted on March 6, 2014 by in Relationships and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , .
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