The thing that happens when you get engaged is that everyone (and their mother and my mother… Hi Moms!) asks you how the wedding planning is going. Since I have been working in the wedding industry for over a decade (man, I sound like a dinosaur!), there seems to be a lot of expectations on our big day. I have had people say, “Well you have seen it all so you must have a real set idea of what you are going to do for your own wedding!” And initially my reaction has always been: well, not really. Not really because I am not that super uptight kind of bride. I’m just not that super uptight kind of anything.
Except that the more that I have been thinking about our wedding, the more I realise that I do have a firm set of expectations for that big day. I still think that a wedding should not be the focus of all that is life. I know that it is just one day in the span of our lives together but I am realising that it is a pretty important one. Not because we will be looking top notch or because we will be officially joined for life but because it’s our one opportunity in our lives to have those that we love the most in one big room and that is pretty darn special.
Before we got engaged, we talked about what we would do for our wedding. We dreamed of something small and intimate at one of our favourite local bars (called Pharmacy, in case you were wondering). We were thinking forty people maximum could fit there comfortably and it would be low-key and fun. Then we got engaged and I was Skype-ing with my sister in Mexico. She asked what we were planning on doing and I told her the above to which she replied, “But how can you do that? You guys have so many friends!” We sat down that night and began compiling a guest list and she was right, we have a lot of people in our lives that we love. Her family alone would be 1/8 of the wedding guests if we were to stick to our original dream wedding idea. So began our new game plan.
When compiling the guest list I made two rules 1) Unless they live outside of the province, we both have had to have met them before and 2) Not including those who live out of province, they have had to have been to our house before. Why? Because that means that they are actually a friend. We love to host friends at our home (evidence here and here) and if at some point, you did not accept one of those invitations, well then maybe you just aren’t that close of a pal. Maybe that is harsh, I am not sure. With those parameter, soon our guestlist was over three times what we had originally dreamed of. But you know what? I am okay with that. Looking at that list make my heart swoon a little. We have some awesome people in our lives.
Having said that, I have to say: weddings are expensive. I have been hearing this from clients since I began photographing them in 2003 and now I fully grasp those three words. Weddings are expensive. Given that we are paying for the great bulk of it ourselves we are being very cautious about where we are putting our hard-earned bucks. We are smart and thrifty and I know that we got this thing. Yes, the whole point of the shindig is that we are joining together in holy matrimony (Josh will love that I wrote that) but really it is just an excuse to throw a killer party which we are starting to get really excited about. We are going to do things our way, just as we want and I think that it is going to all come together quite well.
So how is our wedding planning going, you ask? Well, currently we have confirmed a venue, photographer, DJ and officiant. I have always said that all you need is an officiant to make it a wedding and the rest is extra so with that, we are officially having a wedding! A couple of weeks ago we sent out Save the Date cards because we wanted to give our guests fair warning that yes, we are getting married on a Wednesday in April (it’s no joke!). Yesterday we hit the seven months away mark so I am feeling the need to get going on having more things confirmed. I want to book (and pay for!) all that we can as early as possible so that in the last couple of months we are not scrambling. I’m a virgo, I like to be organised. Next on the list: hiring a coordinator and getting our chefs in line.
P.S. The above photo was taken by my favourite photographer, Chris Buck. I have admired the man since I was a Ryerson student when I saw him give a lecture at the AGO in clown shoes. A few years ago we met and I photographed his family and he has been a friend since. This summer we spent time together and while he was in the city, he photographed us. It’s a strange and fun thing to be photographed by your favourite photographer and I feel honoured that we all made it happen.