Today’s Real East Carolina Bride entry comes to us from Joylynn, a bride whose New Bern wedding is coming up in April 2017.
Hello again! I feel like so much has happened since my last blog. I have gotten a lot accomplished in the last 6 months and we only have 6 months to go! As brides I think we can all agree that when we go through our monthly checklists we feel so proud that we get to put a little check mark next to things like booking the caterer, ordering the cake, or buying that special dress.
Over the last few months I have ordered my dress and had it altered, picked out my shoes (who knew it would be so hard to pick out shoes!), ordered our wedding rings, finally decided what kind of flowers we wanted and ordered them, finalized how the centerpieces would look like, started working on our aisle runner, picked out how we would be displaying our seating chart, decided on what kind of seating we would be using at the ceremony, started designing our invitations and just recently met with the photographer and the baker. Sounds like I’ve accomplished a lot right? Like every girl I had things planned out in my mind of how I wanted things to be, but then when my fiancee actually popped the question I was quickly searching for the best way to implement what I wanted with minimal stress. Having 3 kids and working a full time job I knew that I would need to be able to prioritize my time wisely so that I wouldn’t get too overwhelmed. That is what I want to cover in this blog. How on earth do you juggle everything? What is the best way to eliminate stress from wedding planning? On top of wedding planning you still have to work, family and friends still expect your attention and the groom…well, he wants some of that attention too. I really don’t have the perfect answer to these questions, but I can tell you what I am/have been doing to try to make it easier on me.
First, I made a wedding binder. It has a section for budget planning, a section for ideas, a checklist, the guest list, and notebook paper and some clear sheet covers to keep all the contracts in. I keep everything wedding related in this binder and it goes everywhere with me. I have my color swatches, I have any notes I’ve taken while talking to vendors, and any other notes I’ve written down.
The second thing I did was downloaded two apps onto my phone that are provided by two main wedding sites. They provide great tools but specifically they both have a checklist that is broken down month by month based off of when your wedding date is. On those checklists I first went through and deleted any items that did not pertain to us or what we wanted. For example, I am making my own bouquets so I didn’t need to meet with a florist. Each month I then have been able to go through and check off things that we have been getting done. Like I said, my number one goal was to not be stressed and I felt that the best way to do this was to stick with whatever needed to be done for that month. Although, I haven’t done this completely, (as of right now according to my checklist I don’t have anything “due” until December) but for the most part I have been sticking to it and it has worked fairly well. I will say that one of these apps is a little more detailed than the other when it comes to the checklist. Also, if you compare a month on one checklist with the other you see that something listed on one app in that particular month may be either earlier or later on the other app. I can’t tell you why this is.
In my planning I also have at times felt like I was in a lull. A lull what?! Does that really happen? It did to me. So when I felt that way I went ahead a few months to see if there was any “small” things I could go ahead and get done now. For example, I believe that on my checklist it said we could wait until January/February to buy our wedding bands. Well, in August we decided to go ahead and see what we liked and get them ordered. We were very thankful that we did because we ended up running into some issues with the jewelry company that we had picked and ended up going through another company to get my fiancee’s.
Lastly, another good way to help with some of that wedding stress is to use your maid of honor and bridesmaids. That is part of their job description right? In my last blog I mentioned that I am a big DIYer and enjoy crafting. Therefore, I am making and putting together a lot of things myself. This is where my “Bride Tribe” will come in handy. When I am ready to assemble those invitations or make those bouquets I plan to have a girls night with some wine and music and have some fun quality time putting things together. Do you have any members of your ”tribe” out of town? That is ok they can still help! Two members of my “tribe” live out of town and one of them is my Maid of Honor. We made a Pinterest board together and occasionally I will send her an idea I have through text message and when she has the chance she will pin things to our board to give me some ideas and help me make some choices.
I hope that these tips are helpful in your wedding planning. So far, for me, they have worked wonderfully and I hope that they continue to do so the closer we get to our “big day”.
Stay tuned for an update!
Joylynn’s Vendor Team:
Engagement Photographer: A n W Photography (Web)
Wedding Photographer: The Uprooted Photographer
Ceremony Venue: Union Point Park Gazebo
Reception Venue: Stanly Hall Ballroom
Rehearsal Dinner: The Chelsea
Catering: Strange and Sons
DJ: Absolute Best DJ Service
Cake: American Dream Cakes
We’re looking for more Real East Carolina Brides like Joylynn! If you’re interested in becoming a Real ECB and sharing your stories with the brides of Eastern North Carolina, you can learn more and see if you qualify on the application page. We can’t wait to hear about your wedding!