3 Steps to having an Amazing Wedding Day

One of the greatest gifts to receive on your wedding day is be able to be fully present, to live in each moment and soak in all the joy and excitement of the day.  I feel so blessed to have been able to live that day to the fullest, and when I look back I still feel that peace in the freedom to feel all the emotions of the day. Sound like something you want? Here are a few things I did to help me get there:

1. Trust – your vendors, your planner, your family. These are the people in your life who care about you and are there to help. Trust them to give you recommendations, to delegate tasks to, to be your support. Of course you are free to make your own decisions, but there are lots of people around you who are willing and able to help when you need it.

2. Planning your Timeline–  Blah! Planning is so stressful, you may say. It can be, but it does not have to be. And, doing the planning ahead of time will pay off in the end when everything is in place on the big day.

It can help tremendously to talk to professionals who have done this before. We always give our clients a couple of sample schedules and then work together with them on the details of their timeline. The sample schedule shows them exactly how much time most wedding day activities take. For example, having a receiving line? Please plan for at least 30 minutes. Is it important to you to have a lot of different family portraits? Please allow 3 minutes per photo. Whatever is important for you to have on your wedding day, you should have it. And proper planning will allow you to have everything you dreamed without adding unnecessary stress on you to squeeze it all in or cut things out.

By the way – at our wedding we had a receiving line, we had lots of family photos,  we did not see each other before the ceremony, and I really wanted to attend the cocktail hour. Not something every couple can do. But we did it. We also had a very large chunk of time between the ceremony and reception which allowed us to have absolutely no problem fulfilling every one of those desires.

3. Letting Go– I am so thankful that on our wedding day I was given the advice to let everything go once I left for the ceremony. Because at that point I would enjoy myself more if I just went with the flow instead of fixing details. And just being aware that I wanted to do that in order to keep my peace went a long way.

*Carolyn

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Never Stop Dating {At the Zoo}

It’s no secret making time for each other is important and good for your marriage.Never stop dating” is still one of the best pieces of advice we were given during our engagement. Now that we’ve got a little one, we sometimes have a “family date” and include him at times too. A couple weeks ago we spent our day off at the zoo and we had a great time just enjoying each other’s company. We got to listen to Paul talk to the monkeys (he does a great impression), and watch our son explore as I incessantly sang “We’re going to the Zoo”.

I thought about recording myself singing the song, but decided to spare you my tone-deaf version for a much more pleasant & nostalgic version

The zoo may be thought of as a kid’s activity, but we would have enjoyed it just as much going child-free. Anytime we can do something fun or silly together, I’m all over it. Especially when it includes Paul doing his monkey impression – it’s part of how he wooed me. Really, it does not matter so much what we’re doing, just as long as we are having having fun together. I love my wonderful husband and our son, and I love soaking up as many good times with them as possible. As you may have guessed my love language is quality time. Which means I would love to hear about your date ideas. What do you and your fiance(e) enjoy doing together? If you want to share, tell us in the comment box below.

*Carolyn

ps. Thank you to the kind family in front of who snapped the above photo of us on the train.


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May 25, 2012 - 12:50 am

Laura DePasquale - Too Cute! I’m singing “going to the zoo” in my head 🙂

Monday Marriage Moments {Never Stop Dating: Wedding Planning vs. Dates}

-We love marriage just as much as we love weddings. Take a moment to prepare not just for the wedding, but for the marriage-

“Never stop dating” is one of those great marriage tips I heard when we were engaged. As a matter of fact, it was offered to us as an engaged couple. Because wedding planning is a lot of work, while it is fun, it also can be all consuming. When Paul and I were engaged, it seemed like every time we were together we were doing something for the wedding. Paul’s good friend who had been married for a few years gave him this advice not just for after the wedding but for before too: to make sure that we spent time together without wedding planning. So we did. We tried to balance our time spent together between wedding planning and dates. One great way that we did this was when we set up meetings with vendors, we would go out on a date immediately before or after the meeting. This was not only great because we ensured we were having non-wedding talk, but also because our vendors were not all in our neighborhood so we got to do some exploring. And one of the things Paul and I love to do together is to find new romantic restaurants, places to walk around, and take pictures (of course!) So this was a great opportunity for us to do just that without letting the wedding to-do get too piled up. It was a huge blessing to our relationship and marriage, and one of the ways we chose to invest in and prepare for our marriage.

We took these photos during our engagement on one of theses dates. We went to Paterson Great Falls in Paterson, NJ after we met with our DJ.

Circa 2007.

Now we still take this advice and make sure that we have date nights without talking about “business ” (which does not just mean photography business, but also things like bills, chores, schedules, etc.) –Instead we talk about funny things our son does, the way God is working in our hearts, hopes and dreams for the future, and just joke around and do fun things together. – – We still have meetings and still need time to do work together so while our son is still with loving caregivers we take the opportunity to go out for a date after our time spent working on “wedding planning ” (now for others instead of ourselves!) and it is essentially the same thing – continually dating each other. Life gets busy, heck, life is busy and will be for a long time. So don’t let to-do lists get in the way of the most important relationship in your life. Ferris knows what I’m talking about…

*Carolyn

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