Wedding Wednesday….This is It!

Here we are, just three days away from the wedding. I honestly can’t believe how quickly everything has gone by. I still remember every moment of the day Darren proposed. Throughout the past 11 months, little by little, everything has come together. From finding my dress, picking out a reception location, to attending the bridal shower and bachelorette party and working on final details.

With the exception of a few minor things, everything has been completed. Now it’s time to sit back and relax in the final days before packing everything up, setting up the ceremony and spending time with our friends and family.

Looking back, I never really felt rushed or overly stressed while planning. There were a few bumps along the way but nothing major. I did have a minor meltdown when Darren was supposed to go to Brazil the week before the wedding and I didn’t think we could get everything done, but a delay in the trip calmed me down and I’ve been able to enjoy these final weeks of planning.

If you ask me how I’m feeling, I’m really not sure. Its actually quite bittersweet. I’m glad to be done planning and looking forward to the big day, but sad that what took 11 months to plan and coordinate will be over so quickly. I’m relatively calm, which is opposite of how I usually feel towards most big events, or really anything. I’m incredibly emotional, I’ve cried more times this week than I think I have in the past year. But I’m also absolutely excited! I can’t wait to walk down the aisle on Saturday to marry such an amazing man. I’ve been looking forward to my wedding day for almost my entire life, and even though it won’t be at a lighthouse in Maine or in the mountains in Colorado, I really couldn’t ask for a better day that we have planned.

So just like every monthly update, here’s everything that needs to happen in three days:

-Manicure and pedicure

-Attend wedding rehearsal

-Attend rehearsal dinner

-Decorate reception hall

-Get makeup and hair done

GET MARRIED!!

Wedding Wednesday – Bachelorette Party

Today’s Wedding Wednesday is a special post to reflect back on the amazing weekend that was my bachelorette party! With all the stress of planning for the wedding and busy schedules, I’d been looking forward to a weekend away with some of my favorite ladies. Not everyone could attend the trip, but I still had a great time and enjoyed the company.

The bachelorette party took place in Watkins Glen, New York. This place holds a special spot in my heart as we used to do family vacations here when I was younger, and it is nearby Corning, where I ran my marathon last year. So I was extremely excited to go back to a place that held such great memories.

We drove up Friday and enjoyed a fun night in; eating, drink and playing typically bachelorette party games. It was a good evening to relax and unwind after the long week. The girls even set up a theme as Chelsea’s Race to the Date, including a course map and race bibs to wear during the weekend!

When we arrived, I was asked to leave while everything was set up, so my sister and I headed into town. We went down to the dock on Seneca Lake and spent some time soaking in the sun and fresh air. We also were able to take a picture to replicate our trip from 2002.

Thankfully we aged well..... 2002 vs 2015

Thankfully we aged well….. 2002 vs 2015

Saturday was our only full day in the area, so we had a lot on the schedule. We started the morning with a hike around Watkins Glen State Park. The parking lot was still very empty when we arrived so we had most of the park to ourselves. We hiked for about 3 miles and it was absolutely beautiful. I’ll let these pictures speak for themselves.

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After our hike, we cleaned up and started on the next adventure, a six hour wine tour! We had a bit of delay, but we still managed to keep right on schedule and even added in an additional winery. Each winery was unique and as always, a great way to try all kinds of wines. The wines near the Finger Lakes can sometimes be a bit sweeter than I like, so for once I tried a few red wines and may have enjoyed one or two.

If you’re interested, here are the wineries we visited. I had visited Red Newt and Chateau Lafayette Reneau before, but that was back when all I could drink was sparkling grape juice. The trip this time around was much more fun!

  • Hazlitt 1852 Vineyards
  • Hector Wine Company
  • Red Newt Cellars
  • Chateau Lafayette Reneau
  • JR Dill Winery
  • Atwater Estate Vineyards
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After our wine tour, we came back to the house, vegged out and enjoyed our final night before heading back to Ohio. Sunday morning, I managed a short three mile run before the trip back and it was the perfect way to end the trip.

Even though the drive was long and tiring, I had such a wonderful time in the Finger Lakes. This trip was absolutely perfect and more than I could have asked for. I’m so lucky to have such amazing friends who gave me the perfect bachelorette party!

Souvenirs ;)

Souvenirs 😉

Wedding Wednesday

We are exactly one month until our wedding! 31 days remain, and I can’t help but have the wedding on my mind, all the time. I’m excited, I’m nervous, I’m a little bit of everything. It’s hard to believe that 10 months ago Darren got down on one knee and here we are just one month away!

Even with a very busy month, we were still able to get a lot accomplished. To make sure I stay on top of the rest of the tasks that need finished before the big day, I’ve created a calendar that has one wedding related job to do a day. This is helping to keep things organized and not too overwhelming…..so far.

Here’s what we accomplished this month.

-Sent out invitations

-Attended Bridal Shower

-Started seating chart

-Finalized evening transportation

-Finished bridesmaid gifts

-Set up final vendor meetings

-Second dress fitting

-Started honeymoon packing list

-Scheduled meeting with make up artist

-Worked on escort table decorations

-Decided on wedding favors

-Decided on groomsmen gifts

-Planned honeymoon excursions and schedule

One of the things I was most excited for this month was my Bridal Shower. It was hosted by Darren’s mom, aunt, grandma, sister and sister in law. It took place at a beautiful club house in Marion, decorated with a wine theme to match the wedding. It was absolutely wonderful to see both his and my family, since we don’t see them as much living close to Cleveland. I was incredibly nervous knowing all of the attention was on me, but I still had a wonderful time. We feel so lucky to have such wonderful friends and family that care so much for us.

So many wonderful people

So many wonderful people

Now only 31 days!

Now only 31 days!

Looking ahead into the final month, we’re starting to make final appointments with vendors and wrapping up all the details. The hardest part is creating the seating arrangement while waiting for the final RSVP’s to come in. You think you have it figured out, and then one RSVP can change an entire table.

I’m trying to take one day at a time, and each project as it’s own while the final 31 days quickly go by. But I’m also trying to cherish the moments of planning the next chapter of our lives. As much as I’m looking forward to the bachelorette party, wedding and honeymoon, it’s bittersweet to think that all the time spent planning will be over in such a short amount of time.

As I look into the end of July and beginning of August, here’s everything I need to accomplish in the final month.

-Wedding hair trial

-Make up trial

-Final dress fitting

-Final meeting with DJ

-Final meeting with Ceremony/Reception Hall

-Final meeting with Officiant

-Attend Bachelorette Party

-Finish escort table

-Get marriage license

-Buy box for cards

-Design and order wedding programs

-Design, order and send out rehearsal dinner invites

-Send out Bridal Shower thank you cards

-Finish centerpieces

What else am I missing that needs completed in the final month?

Wedding Wednesday

I’m not sure how, but we’re just two months away from the wedding! I’m starting to have a whirlwind of emotions and I can’t grasp my mind around how quickly things have gone since September. I’m also starting a mile long to do list on everything that needs accomplished, bought and reviewed. I’ve remained relatively relaxed for most of the wedding planning, but I feel like these next two months could be completely different.

Here’s what we accomplished this month:

-Addressed invitations

-Ordered our guest book

-Finalized formal wear

-Booked honeymoon flights

-Dress fitting

-Met with Pastor

-Bought part of bridesmaid gifts

-Continued to work on centerpieces

-Collected pieces for escort table

This past month had a lot of little projects that I knew needed to be done or mostly done. This included our invitations. I’ve had them for a while, but we finally got to bring them out, pack them up and address them. It was the first time I really had a chance to look at them, and I’m excited to send them out within the next week.

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Ready for your mailbox!

We were also able to meet with our officiant, finalized the formal wear and gather most of the bridesmaid gifts. Little projects, but the more we do now, the less we’ll need to do in the final month. I felt like we were able to get a lot accomplished this past month, which has always been a little difficult with our schedules, but I know the to do list will just keep on growing.

Here’s what I need to accomplish next month

-Send out invitations

-Attend Bridal Shower

-Finish centerpieces

-Finish bridesmaid gifts

-Meet with makeup artist

-Work on escort table decorations

-Decide on wedding favors

-Buy box for cards

I know there is more I’m missing, but if I listed everything, the post would be way too long. I’m excited to attend my bridal shower and see both sides of our families, knowing it will be the beginning of all the festivities.

Only 59 days to go!

Wedding Wednesday

This post is going to combine April and May, because time got away from me. We’ve had a busy couple of weeks with work, traveling and not enough hours in the day. Luckily, we’ve been able to get a bunch of things done. Time is going by quickly, and we’re down to just a little under three months!

Here’s what we got done these past two months.

-Ordered invitations

-Sized wedding bands

-Prepared wine bottles for painting (work in progress, always)

-First dress fitting

-Finalized reception dinner menu

-Finished our wedding registry

-Finished our wedding website

-Started bridesmaid gifts

These past two months had some fun projects like picking out our wedding invitations. I used Wedding Paper Diva, just like for my Save the Dates, and everything was very easy. They were proofed and on my front door step within a week of ordering them. And somehow, we stayed under budget!

We also had our reception dinner tasting to find out what we wanted. I have to save, it was probably my second favorite day of planning a wedding. Number one being the day I found my dress. The food was absolutely amazing, and had to pick just a few that we would be serving. It was also the first time we would see our newly renovated ceremony location. It has been under construction for the past few months, but now it is absolutely gorgeous! I cannot wait for the guest to see it.

Yum!

Yum!

With three months to go, everything will really start to pick up and time will by flying by! I’m starting to get more excited as the day gets closer, and surprisingly not stressed out. As someone who has anxiety over everything, I’m not sure how this is possible.

I know I’ll be tempted to go out and enjoy the warm weather instead of work on projects, but here’s what I want to accomplish by next month:

-Address invitations

-Finish centerpieces

-Finish bridesmaid gifts

-Meet with makeup artist

-Decide on wedding favors

-Book ceremony music

-Buy box for cards

-Order our guest book

-Prepare escort table decorations

-Finalize formal wear

-Book honeymoon flights

 

With three months to go, what should I focus on that I’m missing?

 

Wedding Wednesday

Another month has gone by and we’re that much closer to our wedding. Unfortunately I didn’t get as much done this month as I had hoped. I’m not sure how the month went by so quickly, but here we are just 5 months away from saying I do!

Here’s what we accomplished this month

-Booked our honeymoon

-Booked our florist

-Booked the officiant

-Booked rehearsal dinner

 

Our two biggest things were booking our honeymoon and booking our florist. I had been working on some florists for a few months and finally made a decision. One less thing to worry about, and hope that everything turns out beautiful!

 

Our honeymoon was something I was determined to book this month. We changed our minds a few times, but it’s book, and I’m so excited to go to St Martin! Plus this has me both equally freaked out and excited to see.

 

I’m really determined to get a lot done in the next month, mostly because I know once summer hits things will really fly by. Here’s what I want to accomplish within the next month

 

-Order invitations

-Buy or make card box

-Book honeymoon flights

-Work on bridesmaid gifts

-Prepare wine bottles for painting

-Finish wedding registry

-Finalize dinner menu for reception

-Decide on formalwear

-Decide on favors

-Order our Guest Book

-Finish our wedding website


Lots to do! What was your biggest task to accomplish? If you’ve ever been to St. Martin, any recommendations on things to do or see?

Wedding Wednesday

We’re just six months away, six months! I think this mile marker really hit home and I realized how quickly everything was going by, and how little time I still have left. I’m told that I’m ahead of schedule and that I shouldn’t have anything to worry about, but I still feel like I have a lot to do.

Here’s what we were able to accomplish this month

-Sent save the dates

-Booked the cake baker

-Created a short list of rehearsal dinner restaurants

-Designed invitations

-Booked the DJ

-Found my wedding day shoes

-Bought wedding bands

-Verbal agreement with officiant

Some things really just fell into place and have been fairly easy. Our cake baker lives down the street from us and has a mutual acquaintance, so once we had a meet and greet we knew we were in the right direction. Sending out the save the dates was pretty easy as well, with the exception of a few stragglers, but now that they’re out, I can focus on the invitations!

Some things have not been as easy, such as finding heels that will look good with my dress and also come in a size 5. Luckily I found the perfect pair, and they fit perfectly. Finding restaurants for after the rehearsal dinner has also been a little challenging as well. Trying to keep proximity, budget and non chain restaurants for consideration wasn’t as easy as we hoped, but we’ve narrowed it down, and now have to try them all out.

To keep myself from stressing out, I’ve started to make a list of what I want to accomplish every weekend. It’s helping, but I still can’t help that I’m forgetting things. Thankfully my mom and sister have done a few shopping trips to help me with centerpieces and decorations.

This was a good month for getting things done, but it’s only going to get more hectic from this point on. Here’s what I want to accomplish in the next four weeks!

-Book our honeymoon

-Order invitations

-Finalize dinner menu for reception

-Decide on formalwear

-Decide on favors

-Book our florist

-Book the officiant

-Order our Guest Book

-Finish our wedding website

-Prep wine bottles for painting

How do you break down your wedding projects? What little things am I forgetting?

Wedding Wednesday

I cannot believe how quickly each month is passing by! Just 8 months to go, and I can’t help to wonder if I’m not doing enough yet. So far no stress, but I feel like I should be doing a lot more.

Here’s what we’ve accomplished this month
-Booked Hair Stylist
-Had our engagement party
-Reserved hotel for guests
-Bridesmaid dresses picked out and ordered
-Designed Save the Dates
-Ordered Save the Dates

This month I really wanted to focus on things that don’t need to be done right away, but if I got them done, then I’d have less stress later on. One of the main things we’ve been doing is working towards our centerpieces. I’m not ready to show pictures yet, but they involve wine bottles and corks….so we’ve been doing our best to drink a bit of wine. This is sure to be an ongoing project over the next few months, but I’m not too mad about it 😉

My favorite day of wedding planning this past month was the day I was able to go bridesmaid dress shopping with my girls. It was so fun to sit back and watch them try on dresses while I relaxed. We lucked out and found a dress they all love for a great price!

That night we all attended our engagement party thrown by my Matron of Honor, Maid of Honor and mom. We had so many friends and family stop by, I truly felt so loved and fortunate to have so many amazing people in our lives. Unfortunately, I only took three pictures the entire night, but that means we were just enjoying ourselves a lot!

In our game day best

In our game day best

These ladies are the best

These ladies are the best

Can you guess who answered which?

Can you guess who answered which?

Looking ahead, I’m not sure how much I’ll accomplish with the holidays, so it will probably be mostly looking at ideas and planning the next couple of months. But just in case, here’s what I’d like to accomplish in the next month.

-Create short list of honeymoon locations
-Obtain all addresses for guests
-Book officiant
-Book DJ
-Research Florists
-Research Cakes
-Order Guest Book
-Find my wedding day shoes
-Finish our wedding website
-Start registry

 

Did you have an engagement party? Where did you go for your registry?

Wedding Wednesday

This past month flew by quickly! But luckily, we were able to get a lot done. Somehow I find myself at a completely stress free point in wedding planning, but I’m sure it won’t last forever. There were a bunch of things we needed to get done quickly, mostly finding a venue and securing a date. This may have been a bit stressful, but after we figured it out, it has been smooth sailing!

 

What we’ve accomplished

-Wedding Venue Booked

-Wedding Date Picked

-Photographer Booked

-Engagement Pictures Taken

-Bridal Party Picked

-Wedding Dress Picked and Bought

-Colors and Theme Picked

I have to say, we lucked out well on everything we’ve accomplished so far. We had three open dates to choose from and were able to secure my favorite venue on my list! We also found a great photographer and already had our engagement pictures right before the trees lost their leaves. Here are some of my favorites…

View More: http://lauramaephoto.pass.us/chelsea-darren-engagement

View More: http://lauramaephoto.pass.us/chelsea-darren-engagement

View More: http://lauramaephoto.pass.us/chelsea-darren-engagement

The bridal party, colors and theme has been picked, which will help a lot with planning ahead. But probably the one thing I was so surprised to accomplish was my wedding dress. I found the dress of my dreams at the first shop I visited. And since I cried at least 5 times while trying on the dress, I knew it was perfect. Emotion overload, but the stress is gone!

With just nine months to go, I’m starting to break down projects and figure out what needs to be done now, and what can be split up. I have a few things I’d like to figure out over the next 30 days, and hopefully they’ll be stress free as well!

 

What I want to accomplish next month

-Create short list of honeymoon locations

-Pick out Bridesmaid dresses

-Engagement Party

-Book officiant

-Research DJ’s

-Research Florists

-Research Cakes

-Design/Order Save the Dates

 

How did you tackle wedding planning? What were your first projects to accomplish?