What I’ve Learned in Three Short Weeks of Wedding Planning

Wow – has it really only been three weeks since I got engaged? On one hand, it still feels so new, and I still find myself staring at the ring and getting a little choked up thinking about how sweet that day was.  On the other hand, how have three weeks gone by and we haven’t made any real decisions?  Being the planner that I am, with all of my excel schedules and Pinterest Boards ready to go beforehand, I thought I would have like 95% of all of the decisions made by now!!  Somehow I just thought it would just happen, and I’m slowly realizing how many more decisions there are to make that I had never considered.  Don’t get me wrong, I am NOT complaining.  I am enjoying every minute of this! But I am a little surprised at how hard I’m finding it to make solid decisions.

I know you are all dying to know where we stand right now – and here is the list:

  • Set a date – Nope, but we’ve narrowed it down to the Saturdays from September 22, 2012 – October 20, 2012.  Gotta love that Fall foliage!
  • Found a site – Yes! We are about 99.99% sure we are having a tented wedding at my parents home in upstate New York.
  • Found a caterer/tent company – We’ve met with three caterers from Ulster and Duchess Counties, and met with the local tent company.  We liked everyone we’ve met, but there are so many variables to consider, we haven’t made any decisions yet.  We plan to meet two more caterers on our next trip upstate in two weeks before we make any decisions.
  • Found accommodations for our guests – I know most of the wedding guides don’t suggest this as one of the first major decisions, but we slowly realized this is actually the next most important decision we need to make, after choosing my parents home as the site.  There are very few hotels in Greene County, and we are actually hoping to have our guests stay at one of the many resorts in area. Transportation is a major issue, so we need all of our guests in one spot. We’re waiting to hear back from a few places this week so keep your fingers crossed!
  • Picked our colors – Yes!! Though this was no easy task – Tom and I have very different tastes when it comes to stuff like this, and lucky for me Tom actually does care about the planning and has been extremely helpful and involved.  We have come to a compromise we are both happy about.
  • Picked our Wedding Party – This was a no brainer! We are super excited for the upcoming festivities with one another!

Some things that aren’t as important this minute that we have decided:

  • Centerpieces and favors – I’ll be keeping the actual details secret until the big day – but I’ll tell you that it is a great play on how we got engaged and there are some great opportunities for crafting this stuff with my bridal party and other eager friends.
  • Table service and layout of the tent – Even though we don’t have a caterer or menu yet, we know we want to serve dinner family style – we just think its a great opportunity to get the guests mingling with each other at their tables and will add to the feeling of being at someone’s home.  We are loving some pictures we’ve seen of extra long tables, so we will probably be lining up rectangle tables to seat 20 – 30 people per table instead of the usual 8 – 10.

Some things I’ve already learned:

  • Vendors may not get back to  you as quickly as you’d like (I do sit in front of a computer all day, and chefs probably don’t!) but it doesn’t mean they won’t be perfectly capable the day of the event.
  • Everyone will have ideas to offer you about how your big day should be, and most of it is great advice, but  remember you can’t do it all! (Although we may have a bouncy house.  It might be too good of an idea to pass up!)
  • Stop looking at all the ideas out there on the internet once you’ve got a general direction you want to go in.  This might be surprising to some people.  I think this might have to do with some of the collective consciousness theories, but I found myself getting bummed out when I would see examples of something (centerpieces, invitations, etc.) that I had thought of by myself and thought I was being so original, only to find out that someone has already done it. On one hand, it’s nice to see something in an actual photo, and to know your idea worked beautifully for someone else, but I realized instead of feeling more creative, I started feeling creative-less, because nothing seemed to feel like my own anymore.  Trust me, I still love Pinterest, and I’ll keep using it to store ideas, but I can’t let myself get overwhelmed and burnt out in the first month of planning!

So that is where I’m at so far.  We’ve got some good “bones” to our wedding planning that I’m really excited about.  And yes – I’m going dress shopping next week with my mother and MOH, and I’m super nervous and super excited.  But I am still accepting any and all advice you can give me! Was their anything you realized while planning a wedding that you were surprised about? Let me have it so I’m not feeling like a crazy person for the next 11 months!

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