I've been married for a year and a half now but still remember my wedding and the process leading up to it like it was yesterday. I've had a handful of posts written on wedding planning and how to go about it in the least stressful way. Now that wedding season is approaching again, I decided I would go ahead and publish them on a series I've affectionately named Wedding Wednesdays. For the next few Wednesdays I'll be sharing my experiences, tips, and ideas for wedding planning. I hope you find my experiences helpful, and for those of you already marrieds- chime in with words of wisdom!
We had some good friends get married about four months before us, and were consequently a few steps ahead of us in the wedding planning process. As we began to plan our own wedding, they wisely suggested that we set priorities for our wedding. It was probably one of the wisest pieces of advice we got during the entire process so I'm going to explain how we did it, in hopes that you will do it too!
1. Sit down separately and write down the top three things you want in your wedding.
Alex and I each sat down separately (we didn't want to influence the other's decisions), and wrote down our top three things that we valued at our wedding. For me, I wrote down the top three things I wanted at the ceremony, top three things I wanted at the reception, and the top three things I wanted for the entire wedding. I know this technically adds up to nine things, but it was easier for me to organize my thoughts doing it that way.
In a culture of Pinterest perfect weddings, you are led to believe that every little detail has to be important. While the little details are important, you should be able to determine what things are more important to you than others. My lists are down below and should give you an idea of what I'm talking about when setting priorities.
Top 3 priorities for the ceremony:
1. Communion (I really wanted Communion)
2. First look be when I look down the aisle (I was adamant about this one from the beginning)
3. Washing of the feet (I had seen this done once before and loved the symbolism behind it)
Top 3 priorities for the reception:
1. Good dancing/music (I think the dance makes or breaks the wedding reception so this was my #1)
2. People to enjoy themselves (this equated to no seating plan because who likes sitting with strangers??)
3. Good food
Top 3 priorities for entire wedding:
1. That the Lord would be glorified throughout the day
2. That the day would be low-stress and that I would remember that at the end of the day I would be married to my best friend
3. Pretty location
2. Sit down and compare lists with your fiance
Once you have your list, sit down and compare it with the list that your fiance. Ladies, I'll say it once and I hope you hear me. It is your wedding. But it is also 100% your man's wedding too. That means he does and should get a say. I know most people lean towards the bride getting her way, but don't forget your guy only gets one wedding too and it should be something he enjoys too.
I've heard of guys whose wives didn't listen to them at all when planning their wedding, and it caused a lot of resentment later on. Girls, let your guy have a say. On the opposite spectrum of that- guys, let your girls have a say and if there's things you can let go, let them go because she's probably been dreaming about this a lot longer than you have.
3. Compromise, compromise, compromise
There is a 99.99% chance that when you sit down and compare lists, they won't be exactly the same. Alex hadn't really heard of washing of the feet idea (during the ceremony), but saw how important it was to me and agreed to it. Alex really wanted to write and read our own vows during the ceremony- something I wasn't too particular about so I agreed to that. We both agreed that a pretty location was important to us, so that really played into our decision of the venue.
They say that marriage is about compromising, and that is 100% true. You can start practicing compromise when you're planning your wedding.
Setting priorities was a VITAL step in planning our wedding. It helped us determine where to spend more money (thus helping keep us within our budget), it helped keep us focused, and it kept me from being a bridezilla (more on that next week!) I will say that Alex was a very easy going groom and cared about a couple of things and let me do things my own way the rest of the wedding. If your fiance doesn't want to sit down and make a list of priorities with you, then I would tell him that he doesn't have a right to complain about something he doesn't like later on. If there's something you or your significant other care about in regards your wedding, you need to state that clearly. Setting clear expectations from the beginning will save you a lot of arguments and turmoil down the road.
That being said, go out and set your priorities! Happy wedding planning!
Do you think you'll be able to pick a top three priorities in your wedding? All you marrieds out there- did you set priorities when you planned your wedding?