If someone had told me 6 months ago that I would pick a venue, order invitations, create a theme and plan my entire wedding, only to change everything 5 months prior to the big day, I don’t think I would have believed them.
Well, here I am. New date, new venue, new budget, new timeline, new theme, new everything.
I’ve been told that things would change and new ideas would come up during the planning process, and that was completely normal. No one told me that there was a possibility of completely changing the entire wedding from head to toe. I guess because that doesn’t happen very often, or if it does, people don’t hear much about it. So I’m going to be very honest here, and tell you that it, in fact, does happen. You get a ring – that shiny, beautiful diamond ring – and your mind goes straight into wedding mode. You’re head over heels in love, everyone is excited and supporting you, you’ve got Pinterest boards full of ideas, and sometimes you get in a little over your head. You may not think everything through, you may spend a little too much money here and there, sign some contracts, and come to realize… “Dang, this isn’t working.”
Photo Credit: Love by Serena
The initial deposits we had to put down weren’t bad, the idea of renting the camp venue for two days sounded fun, not picking a color scheme seemed freeing, and I figured leaving the DIY decorations among other things ’til later in the planning wouldn’t be a problem. Then, one day, I got my invitations in the mail – custom made and beautiful! Except that there was one issue: the RSVP’s had the wrong return addresses on them. A small error, easily fixable (though it would cost more money, once I determined that the fault was my own). I broke down crying and all of a sudden felt miserable about the whole planning process. I just couldn’t figure out why such a small thing would overwhelm me so much.
I talked to Tim and our families and we got to the real root of the issue. First, I was stressed, and that stress was causing me to stop planning and put things aside. The date was coming too quickly for me and I wasn’t 100% happy with all the choices that were made. I was having a wedding in November that was only picked because it was all the venue had open, I was having a huge ceremony when I wanted a small one, I had no clue how to pay for all the food/rentals/etc required for two days worth of expenses, and I couldn’t handle it. (Wedding planning is definitely not a future career choice for me.) Second, came the issue of budget. It was seemingly larger when we began, but became much smaller as time went on due to unforeseen issues for us and my family. Now when I say my family, it’s just my mother here in Maryland and grandfather in Delaware – that’s really all I’ve got left. My grandfather happily took on most of the cost for the wedding in the beginning, but since then his health has declined a bit and like most of us these days, he’s got money problems. So taking all of this in, Tim and I had a sit down with his parents, who I figured could give us some good advice. We walked through each issue, determined what had to go, what could stay, and we eventually came up with a plan I’m really excited about.
We got half of the deposit back on our venue and the invitations were unusable so we lost some money there. But what we ended up with made the small loss worth it…
We pushed the date back to April 4th of next year, and we moved the location closer to my grandfather in Bethany Beach, Delaware. Both for his convenience, and to give him a better chance at more closely helping out with the planning. He was so excited to help that he found us a venue, and got an amazing deal on it, about two days later. A gorgeous beach house with a private beach that belongs to a friend of his – that we’ve got for an entire week! Our ceremony will be held on a Friday, and our wedding party will stay in the house with us until Sunday. Then Tim and I will have the house to ourselves for a few days, which is amazing since we didn’t plan any sort of honeymoon before. I decided on a close family and wedding party only ceremony on the beach, with a reception afterwards for the rest of the guests we planned to invite… giving the wedding the intimate feel I always really wanted but still making everyone feel included.
I then also caved and picked a color scheme that, I must admit, makes picking decorations MUCH easier than it was before. For a peek at my new inspiration, take a look at this pin! With the new date, I’ve now received ample time to plan and bring everything together, which has eliminated all of the stress I built up and once again made me completely excited for what’s to come. As any bride-to-be should feel!
The moral of my story here is that wedding planning isn’t a seamless process, especially when you’re doing it without a professional planner or endless money. Things will change, sometimes big things, and you’ve got to just roll with it. Also, make sure you don’t rush into anything. Before making big decisions like your venue, take a couple of days and be sure it’s what you want and it’s feasible for your bank account. And last, make sure to never lose sight of what’s most important, that you’re getting married to the person you love. Spending the rest of my life together with my best friend beats out any Pinterest-worthy wedding I could try and put together. Whether our new beach wedding works out, or if we end up married in a courthouse, I know I’ll be happy and we’ll be together. Which, in the end, is all that really matters.