It Is Your Wedding – Not Anyone Else’s Wedding!

A wedding planning checklist is as indispensible as are checklists for buying a used car, travel, or sending junior off to a college dorm.

The first thing on your list should be to ask your friends, particularly those who recently got married, for their suggestions and advice. You could ask them if there is anything that they would do differently. Do they have suggestions on how to save some money?

Always keep in that it is “your wedding”. You should be able to make the final decisions regarding everything. It is not your parent’s wedding or your future in-law’s wedding. They may be helping to pay for it, but it is not their wedding.

Here is a very simple concept to keep in mind. The more organized you are, the more likely you are to have a great wedding day. If you are not capable of organizing a checklist and following it, find someone that is.

(My daughter was recently married. She and her fiancée were extremely organized. The result – perfect!)

What Is Most Important – Remember You Decide!

Make it “Your Day”! Keep the emphasis on the wedding and the marriage. The reception is to celebrate your wedding.

This could be the biggest party that you ever put together. Eliminate the things that you don’t want.

Get excited about the day. Enjoy the planning. Show your enthusiasm. Eliminate any stress by following your wedding planning checklist.

Please make this a priority. Your guests have traveled, adjusted their schedules, and incurred expenses to attend your wedding. Do not ignore that. Be considerate of your guests and their time.

Keep them occupied with fun things to do when you have your photographer take a few photos of the wedding party and parents. Your guests are more important than photos after all – I hope.

(My number one gripe for the many weddings that I was part of was how inconsiderate the photographer and the bride and groom were regarding their guests. It was not uncommon for the wedding party to disappear for 3 hours so that photos could be taken at some memorable place.)

The Wedding Budget!

Decide where to save and where to splurge. The budget is likely to dictate many things:

  • reception location
  • caterers
  • number of guests
  • music
  • photographer
  • wedding dress
  • transportation

There may need to be compromises and a need to set priorities. However, the wedding budget should not put limits on the wedding ceremony.

Pick A Wedding Date – Let The Fun Begin!

You should have an idea who will be your maid of honor and best man. Maybe you know who you will ask to be in the wedding party (if you choose to have one).

Consider the schedule of the people that you need to attend the ceremony. If the best man is attending college and will be involved in final exams on the date that you have selected, for example, there is a conflict.

Is the officiate available? How about the caterer, florist, and photographer? By the way, if the officiate is boring, the ceremony will be boring.

Things To Practice!

Vows – don’t want to mess up here. Practice or read your vows.

Dance – it would be nice to have a perfect dance. Take some lessons, if necessary. Break in those bridal shoes before the big dance.

Toasts – encourage the father of the bride, the best man, and anyone else who will propose a toast to prepare.

Some suggestions for those toasting:

  • identify yourself (unless everyone knows who you are); state your relationship to the bride and groom
  • make it touching and memorable, have those warm feelings show through
  • rehearse it
  • if you are not a natural comedian, avoid jokes
  • never toast if you have had too much to drink
  • shorter is much better than too long
  • end with naming the bride and groom and “Cheers” (or something similar)

Avoidable Mistakes!

Couples who fail to let their personalities show throughout the ceremony and reception are short changing their guests. It is about you. Let it show.

Don’t waste money on things that others want and you do not.

Plan for the unexpected. The weather may not cooperate for outdoor weddings.

Do not have too much to drink the night before the wedding. You need to enjoy this day without a headache or feeling poorly.


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