I am here today to bring you another "Life post" on being a "Teacher-Bride"...no, not a Princess-Bride, but a Teacher -Bride. Now, this is a "keepin' it real" kind of post that is based solely on my experiences (well, and some of my friends), so you will not hear me say "Oh, the days leading up to the wedding are just pure bliss"....NOPE...if you are looking for lemon drops and rainbows this is not the place to find it, folks!
Here is the honest truth...
I am 8 days away from the happiest day of my life and while it is SUPER exciting...it is also very overwhelming. No one tells you about the little tiny details that keep you up at night or the ugly, hot-mess break downs you can have at the drop of a hat...seriously...I was just crying over a pedicure the other day....A PEDICURE!!! UGH! Seriously, this time in your life is a whirlwind of emotions, but I am not here to vent out my wedding woes to you today. I am here to give you a few tips that can help and prepare you for what is to come.
Let's do this!
#1- Things will go wrong and it is OKAY-
If you are sitting there going, "Oh, yeah! I totally can handle that, I do it every day in my classroom. Pssshht, I got this!"... EEHHHH!!! (that's my buzzer noise) I did the exact same thing and let me tell you...there will be things that make you lose your mind! Reception venues will be changed, deposits will be lost, overbearing family/in-laws/ bridal party members will push you to your breaking point, dresses will be lost or back-ordered, etc. The list goes on and on. Guess what...IT IS OKAY! ...well, it won't seem okay, but it will be! Sometimes "things going wrong" actually turn out way better than you had planned to begin with.You know those moments where you trot off your lesson plan and your lesson ends up being WAY longer than you had planned, but you and your students loved every moment of it? It's kind of like that! I mean, you probably won't "love" every moment of the chaos that you are in the midst of, but it will make you and your relationships stronger. Just remember...DEEP BREATHS (and maybe some wine).
#2 Stay organized!
I think this is a given, but I will give you some suggestions that have helped me! If you don't know, I am in LOVE with Erin Condren (well, not her personally, but her products). I have used my Life Planner throughout my entire wedding process and it has saved my life. I can color code (a teacher's dream) my appointments, make to do lists and keep "normal life" events all in one place! I also have the carry-all bag that I keep receipts, gift cards, thank you's etc. in for when I am on the go. (I have a video about my EC life planner...just click here). Click here to get $10 off your first purchase!
Another thing I have used to keep everything organized are those GIANT clear totes from Target. THEY ARE AMAZING! I have one for all of our groomsmen and usher gifts, another one holds my bridesmaids gifts, one holds all of the items that need to go to my wedding planner the week of the wedding (yes, I have a wedding planner and I am so glad I do...I strongly suggest one!) and one more tub to collect gifts from our wedding. Yes, it is a lot of totes, but it keeps my mind at ease and it helps me keep everything together.
#3 Let your opinion be heard...within reason
This is a hard one for some people, not me, but I have had some moments where it has been difficult. It is very easy to get caught up in thinking about your guests, bridal party, family etc. while you are planning. The important thing to do is to be able to voice your opinion without coming across like a total "Bridezilla" (you catch more flies with honey). When voicing your opinion here are things to keep in mind:
1- Listen to what your planner/mother/friend/whoever is saying that way you get all of the information
2- Take a deep breath and collect your thoughts. Make sure you think all the way through the plan or proposal they gave you. Keep breathing
3- Say "Okay... what if..." or "Okay...sounds great!" or "Okay...I have a concern/question" in a very calm voice.
4- State your question or concern.
Now, I always preface my statements with "I am still very confused about this, would you mind explaining it again?" or "Okay, so let me make sure I have this correct...(repeat what they told me and get feedback), what if we were to....?" These small phrases and deep breaths have kept me from completely blowing a gasket many times!
#4 Think like a Bridesmaid
This is one of my biggest pet peeves when it comes to weddings. I have seen many Brides come in to planning with this "you owe me" kind of attitude. Now, let's get something straight...NO ONE OWES YOU ANYTHING just because you are getting married. Yes, it would be very nice if people would help or be your shoulder to cry on, but don't demand it from people! That's just...well, ridiculous! When I got engaged and we began looking at our wedding party, I tried to keep in mind all of the things I had experienced as a bridesmaid (the good and the bad). I made a list of the things I wanted to keep in mind for my Bridesmaids and I stuck to it as much as I could.My list included the following things:
- Keep the dress cost reasonable (around 130-180)...I started shopping for Bridesmaids dresses right away and got exactly what I wanted!
-Find reasonable shoes (cost and height) something that can truly be worn again. (No stilettos!)
- Gifts that can be used again! (Follow me on Instagram or my blog to see gifts will be posted on June 11th!)
- DO NOT demand that they pay for multiple gifts, showers, etc. They are already paying for a hotel, taking time off of work, a dress, shoes and a gift on their own.
- Get bridesmaids input. I had my sister and best friend close by anytime I made a final decision. I made sure that they were honest with me, but understood my side of things. My mother was also a very large voice of reason when it came to decisions. This was extremely helpful.
*I also made (quiet a few) google forms to collect dates from my Bridesmaids, opinions etc. I may have gotten a little too happy with the google forms, but they worked!*
#5 Take it all in and be thankful
It is VERY easy to get caught up in check-lists and lose sight of the overall outcome. Remember to take moments to soak it all in. If you are like me and you have a hard time taking a step back...keep friends on speed dial that can help pull you back. These people are the ones that you will need in the last few days before your wedding and they are hard to come by. You will only get to do the planning for this wedding once, so enjoy it (even the difficult ones, because you will laugh about them later).
Take moments to thank the people that have listened to you vent or handed you tissues when you were crying. The people you have surrounding you at these moments are people that you will want in your life for year to come...cherish them.
There ya have it! Those are the things I have learned throughout my personal wedding process. I hope you find them helpful! Just for fun...I have attached my wedding itinerary template! Creating is my outlet and late at night when I am feeling overwhelmed I create and play with my TPT stuff! So...here ya go! (Click the image to download)