Tuesday, March 20, 2012

wedding planning confessions

Will and I have been engaged now for a little over two months. We planned right away to get married in the summer of 2013 so that we wouldn't have to rush on the planning side of things. Besides, I always said I wanted a long-ish engagement so that I could relax and enjoy the planning process. I've loved watching wedding tv shows, reading wedding blogs, and even have had an account on the knot.com for longer than I would like to admit. When I first joined pinterest last summer, one of the first boards I created was a wedding themed boards. Basically, I love weddings. I even had pretty strong feelings about my thoughts on weddings. I frequented sites like 2000wedding., intimateweddings, and offbeatbride. I was totally convinced that a wedding's focus should be about the meaning and intentions for the relationship. Of course, I love pretty wedding things, but I loved the idea of a wedding that avoided the commercialization of "The most important DAY of our lives" and instead focused on this being the first of many great parties we'll throw as husband and wife. With a motto like that, so much pressure would be relieved. I wouldn't be one of those people who turned into a huge stress ball about planning a wedding. Mine would be simple, and meaningful, and effortlessly Will and Jessica.

And then, I started actually planning a wedding.

Not just pinning pictures of sweet little birds on top of lovely cakes...

or lusting after pictures of wedding ceremonies in charming and offbeat locations...

Source: google.com via Jessica on Pinterest

Or saving pictures of big white dresses without a care for the price tag

Not just those things anymore, but actual real wedding planning. Now I'm looking at prices, searching for unique locations that will accommodate our growing guest list (don't even get me started on this.....), reading contracts and small print, and realizing that, hey....real wedding planning is not as much fun as pretend wedding planning. Having a wedding that doesn't follow tradition and trends is actually a whole lot harder than having one that does! All of my ideas pre-engagement about avoiding the wedding industrial complex have been sharply turned on their head. If you don't want what every wedding banquet hall has to offer, not only do you have to find less on the beaten path kinds of places and services, but you have to figure out what you want to be offered by these places! I've honestly reached a point several times in the last few months where I was ready to tell my mom to plan the whole thing, or go running for the nearest "we do it all" banquet hall.

And by no means do I think doing those things would make our marriage any worse, but it's just not what I want. And on that note, it brings up another difficulty of real versus pretend wedding planning. I'm not the only one planning it. When I pin every bird/branch/babies breath adorned item I can find to my wedding pinterest board, I'm not consulting Will. In real wedding plan, he matters too! I have a lot of ideas about what I want our day to be, but so does he! Imagine that ;-)
Luckily, he has some really great ideas. While I focus on details like ceremony chair set up arrangements and invitation color combinations, he's thinking up creative ideas for how we're actually going to celebrate, and what we'll be DOING in this room that will look like my pinterest board come alive. 

I hate to admit that I've already shed a few tears in this wedding planning process. When I get frustrated, it helps to turn to offbeat bride's wedding manifesto page. It's filled with posts that bring me back down to earth, and help me slowly step away from the wedding craziness.

Some of my favorites:
Your Wedding is Not a Contest
Simple Wedding Planning Wisdom
Walking On Egg Shells: The Challenge of Serving Many Communities

And my favorite of all:
Construction is always more difficult than demolition 
A snippet from the post above-  "It's easy to point at things other people have done and shout No! No! No! as you stamp your feet. It's easy to react against stuffy traditions, family expectations, and a wedding industry that shoves its "you gottas" down your throat. But you know what's much harder? Creating what you want."

Yes, yes, YES it is much harder. Worth it? Hopefully. I'll let you know for sure in 2013.

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