3 things I should have done at my wedding

There are always things you realize after the fact but unlike other events, a wedding is something you hopefully will only do once.  Our day was a perfect reflection of how we live life: it was joyful, loving, a little crazy and as my brother-in-law says, “it was a kick in the pants.”  I think the whole wedding weekend was incredibly fun and enjoyed by all.  But if I had to do it again, I just might:

  1. Hire a wedding planner. I have planned and catered many events but on your wedding, you don’t have time to take things into your own hands.  I would hire a planner to help with a few things and to mainly manage the flow on the day of the wedding.  If there is no person in charge, you will get bombarded with questions.  A planner can intercept all the people on their way to you, making it easier for you to enjoy your day.  Hiring a planner can also save you time and money in other areas because an experienced planner will have relationships with local vendors and should know how you can save some money.
  2. Have a back-up plan in place. We had an outdoor wedding and  it rained during our ceremony.  We pushed the wedding out by 30minutes to 1hr but had to make the call in the final 30 to move the chairs off the grass and inside the tent.  To ease your stress on the day, create two alternate lay-outs – one for rain, one for sun.
  3. Not cater the rehearsal dinner myself. Perhaps the most stressful part of the entire wedding for me was preparing the BBQ Rehearsal dinner.   I planned the menu, had to run to Costco, buy all the groceries, and do all the prep.  And at 3:00pm, 2 1/2 hours before the dinner was set to start – I discovered that the salmon and meat that I had bought were FROZEN.  Someone had accidentally put all the meat and fish in the freezer. Ack! I had to thaw it all out and get it ready to grill.  It was really the last thing I should have been doing.  My friends pitched in too – making salads, sangria and grilling up some food. And it all worked out just fine but I should have had it catered.

Fix Hair Garage

I am still not sure exactly how my hair will look the day of my wedding.  I have had two trials and a nightmare or two but when I met Leah from Fix Hair Garage on Johnson Street in Victoria, BC – I knew I was in good hands.  Leah is very fun and stylish, not to mention 7 months pregnant with the cutest baby bump I have ever seen, covered in tats and has beautiful dark hair.

While I was there for my hair trial with Leah, I spotted another stylist doing a bridal do and I almost said “two please…”  It looked so good.  Seeing this other brides hair and meeting Leah made me think they have quite a few capable and experienced stylists to choose from in the Garage.  So, if you are getting married on VI, I would encourage you to book in early and check Fix out.

You can find Fix at 541 Johnson Street or call 250-386-6183

Johnson Street, Downtown Victoria, BC

Johnson Street, Downtown Victoria, BC

Time, where have you gone?

When D proposed last August, it felt like I had all the time in the world to plan this wedding.  I guess it always does when you first get engaged.  Now, I have only one month left and my to-do list is very long.   That is part of the reason why I have not posted in (gasp!) one month.

I am not stressed though.  I have planned and catered a lot of events over the years and one thing I have learned – that is not about the food, the cocktails or the flower arrangements as much as it is about how you make people feel.  I think people go over the top now trying to create the perfect wedding day. When all you really need is good music, the right lighting and the people you love together in one place to make your wedding memorable.  So, I will have my iPod ready for back-up, make sure the lights are on a dimmer and feel happy knowing that all of my closest friends and family will be together for once (and perhaps only once) in my entire life to celebrate this very special moment in time with us.   And no food, wedding favor or flower arrangment could top that.

PS. if you are going to serve wine, that better be good too!

Handmade Gifts from Etsy.com

Etsy.com has a little bit of cool everything.  From laptop bags and change purses to organic jewelry like this, I love this site.  And the interactions I have had with the designers I have emailed in the past has been great.  I may consider ordering some unique, made-to-order gifts for my wedding here.  Oh, so many options…

Bonfire under the stars

When Danny was growing up, he spent many summer days at his grandfather’s cottage on Spring Lake in the very small town of Verona, Ontario. To get there, he would have to endure a good 3 hour drive from his home in Mississauga on a hot East coast summer afternoon, wedged in the middle of his older siblings. (note: no air conditioning) But once his Mom pulled up to Grandpa Lloyd’s cottage, Danny wasn’t thinking of what it took to get there or the sticky sound his legs made when he finally pried them from the vinyl seats. He was happy to just be.

If you were lucky enough, like I was to experience this special place, you would understand why Danny loved it so. Lounging in the sun, playing bocce ball, canoe rides, water skiing behind the green monster, bbqs and bonfires are things that come to mind when I remember the cottage. The bonfires were some of my favorite times too because that is when I got to know the heart and soul of his family and fell in love with Danny even more. And the stars… Well, you would swear that you never saw so many stars in the sky. ever. We would always drive away with the hope that we would stop, look up and take it all in more. And really, isn’t that what getting away is all about?

When Danny’s parents moved west and couldn’t keep up the cottage back east, they decided to sell it. His parent’s place in Mill Bay, where we will be getting married, has turned somewhat into a cottage replacement for us. There is even a bonfire pit to make the summer nights last a little longer.

Aunt Barbie & Roger

For our wedding night, I will have to remember to stash a supply of warm blankets in baskets, an ice chest full of beverages, long sticks and a smore’s kit for the die hards (that means you) down by the bonfire. There will most definitely be a few of us up for some late night laughs, a round of the name game and the chance to catch a shooting star or two.