I can’t overemphasize how important, when it comes to weddings, the planning stage is. It is, oh well I’ll say it, as important as choosing the right groom. So think it through long and hard. Do your homework: would you buy your next car without doing any research (did you know most people spend more on weddings than they do for shopping for a car?). Be informed and read as much as you can before you begin and during your planning. Patiently ask your married friends for any advise in all aspects of wedding and planning based on what they went through. All the resources you need are available online, your local library, magazines and again, those you know.
Put everything in writing. Buy organizers and any tool you feel comfortable with to get a sense of order not only for your wedding but for all the ongoing projects in your life. Go to youtube.com and enter the search term “GTD” or “Getting Things Done” for further revelations on how to get your life organized. At the simplest level, a to-do list can start you off, but by all means Do Get Organized. There exist nowadays computer software programs, expandable file folders, or 3-ring binders that may fit the bill to get you organized.
Plan based on reality, not fantasy. Know your budget and act and think accordingly. Think about the level of formality, the style and look you want and can afford and then, only then, commit to a plan.
Use Your I.Q.
Your biggest asset is your brain. Use it wisely to avoid falling prey to high-pressure sales pitches and “too-good-to-be-true” offers. When con men and sales quacks get involved in your circle of trust, things can crumble rather quickly when they get involved in the craziness of wedding planning. Use your intelligence. Be smart and listen to your instincts.
Be Dollar Wise
Prioritize first. Budget second. Think about what you and your fiance want and ask yourself if getting or doing something makes sense, or whether it makes sense to do without it. Specially, know where the money is coming from, how much of it there is available, and budget accordingly!
Your friends and family can offer more advise than you can imagine. Seek advice and help of those in your life who have gone through the experience. Ask them what they did right and what they did wrong, and how they would do things if they were you. For fun, watch the movie “The Wedding Planner”, with Jennifer Lopez. It will give you an entertaining idea of what a wedding requires in terms of preparation. For-hire wedding coordinators abound who charge on an hourly basis for minimal consultations. In case you can’t seem to find an answer to an organizational problem, they’re the ones to consult. Most importantly, select the members of your wedding party very carefully.
Put it in Writing
Contractual agreements are the ultimate source of trust. Unfortunately honor systems have never and will never work, as one’s words get blown away by the wind. A written contract stands the test of time and will assure you get exactly what’s written on it. Read any agreement you sign very carefully, because you will get what it says in it. Do make sure the vendor signs it.
Ask, Ask, Ask
Be detail oriented and ask away, to the point of seeming obsessive, if necessary because you want to exhaust all the possibilities, all the scenarios. Try to get to know everything about every aspect of your wedding, and select only the vendors who patiently and intellegently are willing to answer every one of your questions.
Own the Wedding
Remember that this wedding is about YOU! The best weddings have personal touches that make them memorable. Set up a collage of age-progressed photo slides of you and your fiance. Add your favorite song as background music while displaying it. If you have talents, display them at your wedding. Lay out a display of poems, art work or photos done by either of you. Use your creativity. If you’re not an artist but have hobbies, display your hobbies wares, or give the wedding a “theme”. You can add personal touches to everything from the invitation cards, to the cake, to the first dance. Be unique, and above all, enjoy yourself!
You’ve done all the hard work, and everything is ready. Now just relax and enjoy the fruit of your hard labor. Take a break and regroup your energies. Take a yoga class, learn to meditate and enjoy the planning stage. Go with the flow, and let go.Gifts for the 4th of July Tying the Knot WeddingsGifts for the 4th of July Tying the Knot Weddings