People will tell you the day goes by fast. They’ll tell you to take in every moment and savor every memory. And yes, they’ll say, “Don’t sweat the small stuff.” But the one thing no one can prepare you for is just how incredible the entire day will be.
May 19 was, by far, the best day of my life. From the moment I took my first step down the aisle to the incredible feeling of exhaustion during the last dance of the night, it was beyond my wildest expectations. No matter how much planning you do and how much advice you gather, nothing can truly prepare you for the overwhelming joy you’ll experience—and that’s exactly how it should be.
When I think back to that day and all the incredible love that surrounded us, I’m truly blown away. It’s hard to believe it happened and was so perfect (even in its few imperfections). And now, it’s hard to believe it’s over.
And while I’d love to do it all again, I really don’t think we could ever recreate that moment. (And I must admit, I don’t mind having my free time back and being able to enjoy a much-more-relaxed married life.)
A few highlights from the day . . .
– Watching my mother tear up when I put on my dress.
– Seeing my groom for the first time (I snuck up behind him and tapped him on the shoulder for our first-look photos).
– Having way too much fun taking photos around downtown Minneapolis with the wedding party.
– Sharing a moment with my mom to give her the photo album I made of our long history together. (Yes, we sobbed.)
– Hearing our wedding singer (the uber-talented Reg Chapman) sing Stevie Wonder’s You and I acapella, after a technical glitch with the back-up music (again, perfect through imperfections).
– Regaining composure after a moment of emotion during our vows.
– Watching my groom choke up as he placed the ring on my finger.
– Laughing and crying (almost at the same time) during the maids-of-honor speeches.
– Dancing with my father to our song, My Girl (and learning he has way better moves than I do).
– Dancing with my groom all night long, until I thought my legs were going to give out.
– Seeing my mother having so much fun on the dance floor—and her telling me they had to leave at 11:30 p.m. because my dad was pooped out.
I could really go on and on. There were probably a thousand memorable and fantastic moments from the day—all so special and so meaningful.
And of course, after the fact, I half-wondered why I was so stressed—everything turned out just as I had hoped.
Now that it’s all said and done (and we’ve fully relaxed with 10 days in paradise, thank you, Aruba!), I leave you all with a few final pieces of advice.
1. As you’ll find out, when the big day is finally here, some of that week-before preparation and final confirmation of bridal party duties might go out the window. Get yourself a stellar personal attendant who can take charge and be your go-to “questions” guru. I had two and they were beyond phenomenal.
2. Let someone else control your cell phone. Trust me, most of the reasons someone is calling you on your wedding day is not anything you want to be dealing with. Ask someone in your bridal party to take the reins and allow them to ask for your input on the “big issues.”
3. Whenever possible, before the madness begins, sneak away for private moments with your groom. It is your day, after all. We skipped the cocktail hour, had someone get us a couple glasses of wine and instead, reflected on our ceremony and the incredible vows we just made.
4. EAT. So many people get swept away in saying hi to relatives and chatting with friends that they forget to eat at their own wedding—try to avoid that. You’ll need the energy for the dance floor!
5. Remember, certain things that may go wrong (and there will be a few) are most likely going to be completely unknown to your wedding guests. They’ll remember how beautiful you looked, how gorgeous the venue was, and how much fun they had.
6. If you want your wedding dessert to be a guaranteed hit, seriously, call Cocoa & Fig. But be sure to order extra. As we found with our guests, overindulgence is inevitable.
7. Not to sound cliché, but seriously, enjoy every second. It’s truly a whirlwind adventure but I promise, once it’s all over, you won’t regret one moment of preparation. Being in a room where you literally know everyone is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. Take it all in and it’s sure to be the best day of your life.
8. Depending on your interests, if you can, I highly suggest resisting the urge to make any plans for your honeymoon and instead, just relax. The first night we were in Aruba, I think I slept 15 hours straight. Clearly, a year of wedding planning will do that to you.
As I enter my new role as a little wife, I hope my short stint of wedding blogging was heartfelt, entertaining and maybe even a little helpful. I wish you all a wonderful wedding, followed by an incredible marriage and a life of ever-lasting love. Thanks for reading and happy planning!
Photo by Lucky Penny