Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The wedding saga begins

Brent and I got engaged on Jan 25th, 2014. We were on a trip to the mountains since I always wanted to go to the mountains in the middle of winter to play in snow. Brent decided to grab the opportunity to pop the question. He did it at Dry Falls in Nantahala National Forest, and had already coordinated with a photographer to be there at the set time and capture the whole thing. Needless to say, Nick Breedlove (the photographer) did a wonderful job too! You can see the whole proposal captured by Nick on his Facebook page.

Then we took a looooong break to enjoy the engagement and practice referring to each other as "fiancé" and "fiancée," before we jumped into the whole wedding planning. Bad move. Here's why: We both wanted a Fall wedding and October seemed like the perfect time to have an outdoor wedding in North Carolina, when it's not too cold, but the leaves have started changing colors. We started with our wedding planning on Feb 14th, since Valentine's Day seemed like a good milestone to start. And then we started calling places trying to get Saturday spots in October, and much to my horror, almost all of them were all booked for all October Saturdays. For anyone planning a wedding and getting engaged less than 7 months within your planed wedding date, I would not recommend waiting like we did. Every week is important. Nay, Every. Day. Is. Important.

Very luckily for us, since we are expecting a small wedding with only about 60-80 guests, it did make it a little easy for us to find venues that worked with our dates. But after contacting 17 places, we found 5, out of which we absolutely loved two, just looking at their pictures. We are still deciding between the two, but for now I'm glad we even have options. Once we have the venue fixed, we will immediately have the date fixed, so we can send out Save-the-Date cards. Seven months seems like a reasonable time to ask your guests to save the date.

As we go through this whole process, I will go on documenting it on my blog just because I was searching for something like this on the Internet to get an idea for where to start, but didn't find anything. As my mom would say, maybe I just didn't look hard enough. Oh, well, that's what mommies say. I am lucky to have two good friends who had Fall weddings last year to give guidance, but not everyone has personal sources.

I already have my Maid of Honor and Bridesmaids picked out in my head, and I already bought the stationery to send out Will-you-be-my- cards, but I can't send them out till we have the date picked. So basically, choosing the date and venue should be your number 1 priority. Also, I have already started looking at the décor for the wedding on Google and Pinterest, and I'm not planning on getting a wedding planner and intend to do most of the décor myself. So if you are the same way, you should start as soon as you can. If you are getting a wedding planner though, now would also be a good time to start shopping around for good planners with suitable rates. Also, I forgot to mention that you should have a budget set before you even start looking for venues, and make sure who will be paying for the wedding, bride's family, groom's family, the bride and groom, or a combination of any of the above.

Also, one advice, keep a journal and document everything. Not just a note on your phone, or a blog, or a Word document on your computer, but an actual pretty paper journal. You will definitely appreciate having done that few years down the road.

Stay tuned for more updates on the wedding planning.