Our Wedding Weekend: Part 1

Hello lovely bloggers! I know it’s been a while. Things got pretty crazy over here, so I wanted to take the chance to let you all know what we’ve been up to, and why I’ve been so MIA.For those of you who follow me on social media, you know by now that Kyle and I got married on October 28th!  It has already been a couple weeks and we’re still living in dreamland, reminiscing on how amazing everything turned out, and how happy we are. But I’ll go back a little further, since it’s been so long..

The big decision..

In some of my other posts, I had announced that we had to change our wedding venue and date due to Kyle’s military obligations. I didn’t go into too much detail, and I still can’t explain all of it. But after much contemplation on what was best for us, we decided to move the date up so that we could still have our special day. And by move it up, I mean we made it 8 months sooner.. Crazy, I know.

The Venue

Wedding dates are chosen primarily on when your venue is available. If you’ve found the perfect place, you accept whatever date they have that works for you. But obviously our situation was a little different, and we had to make some major changes. So, after getting our deposit back from our original venue, we started doing some research. I wasn’t willing to give up my idea of the perfect day because of the military. I was going to hold on to every detail for as long as I could.. and I did.

My parents just built a beautiful home on the side of a hill, overlooking a quiet little lake. All around their house, the land was already leveled out, and there’s tons of space for parking. After realizing all of this, my parents immediately offered their home as a venue, guaranteeing that we wouldn’t need to worry about the date. Some minor landscaping needed to be done, but we came up with a plan and got to work right away. By this time, it was early August.

The Bridesmaids

I had chosen my girls back in January, so that was no problem. Now it was time to get everyone together and decide on their dresses. We had chosen navy blue, since it works in any season and looks great on everyone. All 4 girls tried on about 20 different dresses before we narrowed it down to 2 final choices. We decided to go with the choice that was a bit more comfortable for everyone, while still being very elegant. It’s hard to justify spending $200 on a dress that you’re probably going to wear one time. But my MOH kept everyone on the right track, and we had a blast.

The Dress

I never wanted to make finding my dress a huge spectacle. I think the more people I have, the less likely I’ll find something that I truly love. Too many opinions, and too much stress. So my mom and I headed to a bridal shop a few towns over, just the two of us. I had already looked at some of their bridesmaid dresses back in March, so I knew they had beautiful choices. They escorted us up to a private area, with hundreds of dresses hanging on each rack. Needless to say, it was overwhelming. I thought I would be there for hours.

I gave them all of my preferences for color (white/off-white, eggshell, ivory, etc.) and style, and after taking measurements, they disappeared to find some options to try on. This bridal shop didn’t carry the “bright white” that some brides love. They had mostly off-white, which was exactly what I was looking for. They came back with 3 dresses, and we narrowed down what I liked and didn’t like as we went. By dress 5, I had found “the one”. It might sound cliché, but the moment I put my feet in and pulled it up past my waist, I knew. Before I even glanced in the mirror, I felt like a bride. It was everything I had been dreaming of.

The strangest part about the dress, is the story that came with it. It was a custom order duplicate, meaning another bride had sent in specific measurements and alterations, and it was accidentally ordered twice in their system. And by some chance, it fit me. I didn’t know any of that until we had already purchased the dress, so I couldn’t help but think that it was meant to be.

The Bridal Shower

My bridal shower was about 1 month before the wedding, in late September. We had an extremely warm fall here, so it turned out being about 80 degrees. I had my hair trial that morning, so all I needed to worry about was what to wear. I was completely surprised and overjoyed with how the shower turned out, and all the hard work that my mom and bridesmaids put in to make it special. By the end of the day, we were all exhausted.

The Minister

Choosing the right officiant had been a real challenge for us. I didn’t want a Justice of the Peace, because I felt like it lacked that personal appeal that we wanted. It was really important that our officiant knew our story, and knew us. We found a minister in the town that I grew up in, and she was everything we had been searching for. She had us meet with her 3 times prior to the wedding rehearsal, and each time we would talk about a different aspect of marriage, love, family, and all of our aspirations. She helped us discover new things about eachother, and brought out our most honest selves. I really believe that she brought us closer, which was such a blessing in all the craziness.

The Bachelorette Party

I’m not gonna lie, we went all out. I’m not a big drinker, but there was no avoiding it with these ladies. Let’s just say we had one of the best nights ever.

The Rehearsal

Our rehearsal dinner was organized by Kyle’s parents, and we scheduled it for the Thursday before the wedding, allowing us to spend Friday decorating. It was held at my parent’s home, since the wedding would be there anyways. And it was pouring rain. Not the normal kind of pouring either; this was like a monsoon. The tent doors kept blowing open, and we had to tie everything down. The driveway was a mess, and we started to worry if everything would dry out by Saturday.

We got through rehearsal, which was a bit of a challenge because everyone was so wound up and excited. When the hard part was over, we finished up the night with some drinks, food, and the typical story-telling. At one point in the night, I took a moment to look around the room at everyone. All these different personalities and walks of life, and they all loved us enough to come together. We have some truly wonderful people in our lives. People that I know will be around forever. I think that night is when it really hit me that it was all happening.

Wedding-Eve

I didn’t know this was a thing, but the day before the wedding I kept getting texts saying “Happy Wedding Eve” so I guess we’ll go with it. We had reserved the day before to do the rest of the decorating, and pick up some last-minute gifts. Kyle and I bought gifts for our parents as a thank you for all of their help, and something they could remember the day by. We also bought each other surprise gifts and cards that we would exchange on the wedding day. We ran around picking up some other “emergency” items, and then we headed to Kyle’s parents for another small dinner.

At the end of the night, Kyle dropped me off at my parent’s house where I would spend the night so we could get ready in the morning. He spent the night at our apartment with my brother, smoking cigars and celebrating. I, however, spent the night re-doing our entire seating chart because we realized we were missing five people. FIVE. Don’t ask me how we did that, because I still have no idea. But by 11ish, we all finally got some sleep..

Tune in next week to read about our wedding day and honeymoon!

What did you do to prep for your big day? Were you a stress-free bride/groom, or just the opposite?

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