Now that you've taken a few days off to relax & enjoy eachother without the craziness of thinking about wedding planning or other stressors involved, its time to begin talking about where to begin with your planning. First thing first, talk to your fiancè and separately write down the top 3 most important things that each of you want for that special day. On the same sheet of paper each of you write down any & all considerations you can think of when deciding on a date & time of year. For example, when we began our planning the 3 most important things to each of us was 1) photographer...no not a coincidence, my hubby & I treasure photos very much and wanted to make sure that we had good wedding photos to remember that day & of course to show off to everyone later, lol. 2) I wanted my nephew there and that also ment considering my hubby's niece, both of which are quite young & live on the east coast so we needed to be cognisent of their school calendar in picking a date. And finally 3) was mine...considering we live in Hawaii I desperately wanted a toes in the sand beach wedding (which proved to be difficult but we'll get to that later.)
Once you have an idea of what's most important to each of you discuss these with one another and if any of them contrast find a compromise before trying to plan further and causing things to be overly stressful before they need to be. Once you've found common ground, put all accept for the date considerations & location specifics asside. For now those are the only 2 things you should be concerned with. These can prove to be 2 of the most difficult or hopefully in your case the simplest things to plan. For us this was difficult because although it would have made our lives easier to have the wedding in autumn to give more planning time, we needed to push it up so that the kids would be able to come in on their summer holidays. Then came the idea of our "toes in the sand." Living on an island in the middle of the pacific with some of the most beautiful beaches in the world you would have thought this would have been a simple request right?....wrong! Wherever you are getting married PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE DOUBLE & TRIPLE CHECK THE LOCAL LAWS BEFORE GETTING YOUR HEART SET ON A LOCATION!!!!!! I desperately wanted Waimea Bay because that was where we met. And then came the gavel that ended all thoughts of that, we found out that in 2008 Hawaii had made it illegal to get married on the beach if you had any chairs for guests or anyone at the ceremony were being paid. If someone was willing to compromise the grass area above beaches apparently were fair game, but it just wasn't the same so that meant finding a private beach who would rent the area to us for the ceremony & for us we did not want that to be a resort. Once you know these legalities & local specifics you can move forward easier without the sudden let down that we faced(I actually cried in one of the wedding shops where we found this out. I tried so hard not to but could not control it and tears just streamed down my face.) Once you've found the place where you are both happy with contact them to find out the specifics (times available for weddings, requirements, dates available ect ect). Some places fill up very quickly so be as flexible as possible. When we found our spot there were only like 3 dates open the entire summer. In addition to all of this think ahead to where you plan to go on your honeymoon & when you want to leave as well. If you plan to fly out that day or the next and are going somewhere remote you may have to rething the date or when you will leave. We initially planned a Saturday wedding then we realized there was only one direct flight out per week to our honeymooon destination which was also on Saturday. We wanted to leave the next day and since we were having a small afternoon wedding & with the kind of careers many of our guests had we could easily move it back a day to Friday and not be too much trouble.
Next comes thinking about the reception. I also would have loved to have the reception at the same location as our ceremony, but it just wasn't feasible due to exorbitant fees for doing so. So we found an alternative that worked out quite well. Think of the overall theme you want for your wedding & reception in choosing the location for both the ceremony and the reception. They should mesh closely if possible, but it is your wedding so you decide. Be sure to reserve this area as soon as possible as well. Now with both locations chosen get all details possible from the owners if you are renting the location. Some places require specific venders to be used while others are very flexible. You cannot procede further until you have this knowledge because you don't want to book your own venders to then find out you're required to use someone else. I know this all seems a bit daunting, but you can do it! For us this was absolutely the hardest part of the planning.
Now go get that location & date sorted & come back next week to get more details on how to proceed....This step could easily take a few weeks so do not be discouraged if this takes a bit longer than you expected. It will all come together. Keep ignoring the questions trying to rush or pester you into answers or locations that you do not want. Remember this is your day and no one elses, if someone doesn't like when or where you choose then they don't need to be there! Remember when things get crazy & stressful take a few minutes to relax, breath, & destress then push forward. Have a lovely week of planning! Aloha!
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