You look down at beautiful new engagement ring sparkling in your lives. You’ve both just said, “YES, let’s DO THIS. Let’s get married!” It’s so exciting as dreams of your life together fill your heart and mind. You feel so happy and so in love.
Then you wake up one morning and say “OMG, where do we go from here?” “You can get to feel OVERWHELMED.
If you’ve felt like that as you begin your wedding planning, here are SIX easy steps. As a wedding officiant in Southern California, I’ve celebrated over 500 weddings. So here are a few ideas.
1) SET YOUR WEDDING BUDGET. Yes…don’t be swept away with dreamy ideas until you set your budget. There are AMAZING things to do to celebrate at all budget levels. If others (like parents) are involved, then find out if they’d like to add to your wedding budget. Then just add it up.
You’re shocked that I said that cash comes first? Yes, it does. Because you don’t want to be surprised when you wake up the first morning of your honeymoon and you feel you did not get what you wanted for the amount you spent. So start with the amount you both would like to spend. Then stick to your wedding budget.
2) Decide how many GUESTS TO INVITE. If the answer is 10, that gives you a lot of flexibility for everything else. If it’s 250, your planning you’re your costs will be very different. Word of WARNING! As a wedding pastor, beware that guest lists tend to be much larger than you originally planed. So know how many is best for both of you. If your guests will be commuting from other places, keep in mind they will have to make travel plans.
3) Think about how many people will be YOUR WEDDING PARTY, bridesmaids, groomsmen, flower girl, ring bearer. It could be just the two of you or it might be up to 20 people. The answer to this question will also definitely shape your wedding.
4) Find THE VENUE that’s perfect-it’s beautiful, it “speaks” to you both and it’s a good “fit” for you and your guests. Make sure it’s not only a special spot for you both but that the amenities you want are included-chairs, tables, PA system, ceremony site? Do they cater? Do they provide a “day of” coordinator? What hours is the site available?
5) PICK A DATE when your venue is available. If you pick a simple courthouse wedding, that’s just about every weekday from 9-5. So that’s easy. Most other dates are limited to when the venue is available. The weather is another factor in picking a date. If you want and outdoor wedding with snow falling, then snow months are for you. If you’d like a certain type of flower, then your florist can suggest dates when those will be available.
6) Choose a SEASONED WEDDING PROFESSIONAL with whom you can bounce off ideas. Family and friends will give you lots of suggestions. The internet will give you TONS of ideas. It’s YOUR seasoned professional that will give you feedback that’s authentic, realistic and based on what you want. Their ONLY point of view is your happiness. So go ahead and pick one who you like and with whom you are comfortable just chatting.
I hope you enjoyed reading this blog and that you’ll leave a comment on my website. Also be sure to contact me by text, 909-730-7342, on the website, BestCeremonies.com, or by email, firstname.lastname@example.org if I can help you in your wedding planning. I’ve been a wedding officiant for many years and done over 500 weddings. It’d be so much fun to get to know you and help you move along the path to a WONDERFUL WEDDING!
Pictures taken on the GREAT WALL of China. 🙂