Years ago when I was in college, my favorite professor and nun stated that to write well one should write about what one knows. Right now I know about planning a wedding. And I must say, contrary to popular belief, I found it to be fun and undaunting. Here, while they are fresh in my memory, are a few thoughts I have about planning a wedding.
1. Like many things in life, planning a wedding is as difficult and stressful as you make it. We decided early on that we would enjoy every part of this most special time in our daughter's life. We chose to work together and keep things as simple as we could. We thought about how important each aspect of the wedding was to Madison and Nicolas, and made decisions accordingly. For example, while flowers are an integral part of wedding festivities, Madison and Nicolas planned on celebrating their wedding a few hours from home and knew that getting fresh flowers from our local florist would be a difficult task. We didn't want to order from a florist we didn't know, and picking them up the day before, transporting them, and keeping them fresh was too much to deal with. Instead, Madison found an Etsy shop and worked with the owner to design the most lovely silk flowers that will last forever.
2. Recognize your strengths. And your weaknesses. In other words, do what you do, and let others do what they do. If designing and decorating is your thing, find an empty venue and go to it. If it isn't, find a venue that will do it for you. And then let them do their job. We chose a venue that provided a lovely sit down dinner. The hotel manager was pleasantly surprised when he asked Madison to tell him where we wanted things placed on the table, and Madison responded that he could do it however he thought it should be. That is what he does. So we let him do it. And it was amazing.
3. Resist the urge to fall into the Pinterest trap. Pinterest is great. And it is awful. Great because it offers so many ideas. Awful because it can create unrealistic expectations and unnecessary pressure. I encouraged Madison to let go of all those Pinterest pictures and think instead about what she and Nicolas wanted their day to look like. After all, no one on Pinterest shares their exact same ideas, interests, memories, moments, and thoughts. I encouraged them to forget all those pictures and expectations, and enjoy the day they created.
4. Relax. Really. Remember that your guests are there because you invited them. You invited them because they are special to you and to your child. They are not there to critique your choice of linens or count the different types of cookies you offer. These are the people you chose to celebrate the most special day in your child's life. Forget the stress and enjoy. I was so happy at Madison's wedding. Really happy. I was happy to celebrate my girl and her new husband. I was also happy to honor and entertain the people we chose to share the day with us.
5. Remember to enjoy all your planning. The day of the wedding, I gave Rhett my phone. I wanted to be in the moment. Each and every moment. I soaked in every single smile, tear, hug, laugh, dance, visit, and kiss. I am so thankful I did. The day passes so quickly. I didn't want to miss a moment.
I know there are many more thoughts on planning a wedding. You can find them in any wedding book, binder, and of course on Pinterest. These are just a few of the things I am thinking of as I settle back into life after the wedding. I hope someday these small thoughts help you enjoy one of the most wonderful times of your life.
Photo credit: Lydia Shafer Photography