Thursday, May 30, 2013

{Wedding} How to be the most awesome bride ever.

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This (rather long) blog post, is dedicated to any girl who is currently a bride, any girl wishing to be a bride and any girl who ever dreams of being a bride. If there are any men reading this post (hello.... how you doin? - just kidding, I'm married) you should pass it along to your all lady friends because I'm here today to tell you how to be the most awesome bride EVER.

How do I know how to be the most awesome bride EVER? To be honest, I knew it long before I stepped into my wedding dress and long before this wedding day crept up on us - but if you don't believe me and my humble biased opinion - you can read this.

And now - here are the steps to being THE MOST AWESOME BRIDE EVARRRRR:

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Weddings are emotional. I cry at other people's weddings and your own wedding is by far the most emotional of all. There are all kinds of feelings flying around. You will wake up in the morning and feel excited, nervous and expectant. Your bridesmaids will make jokes and you will feel so youthful, jubilant and jovial. You will think of all your guests arriving and you will feel blessed and honoured. You will think of your fiancé and you will feel overcome with love and eagerness. You will put on your wedding dress and feel radiant and anxious. You will walk down the aisle and feel completely and absolutely overwhelmed.

It's an emotional-rollercoaster of a day and you will probably cry before 7am.

In your cornflakes.

The pictures above was taken the morning of our wedding - my amazing friend Keri had organised the most touching gift for me. It was a surprise and I was completely humbled by all the time, love and effort that had gone into this gift and I sobbed. Not pretty dainty little-wedding-tears, but big rolling, full-of-emotion, snot-fueling giant, heaving-tears. I let myself be absolutely absorbed by all the haywire-emotions and let myself completely feel everything that there was to feel. It was indescribable.

Walking down the aisle with my dad, hearing the music I had chosen and seeing Warren's good-lookng (little-wedding-teared) face waiting for me at the end of the aisle, was by far the most emotional part of my day. I am not sure if it was seeing Warren, or walking with my arm in my dad's or that I had envisioned walking down the aisle - to this (carefully chosen) song - so many times before or that the realness of it all just hit, that made it so emotionally charged, but I was pretty much an emotional nut-case at this point.

I mean, look at these pictures?
Am I laughing? Am I crying? Am I laughacrying?

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Who knows?

But I felt it. 
And I let myself feel it.
Every last little snotty-teary-laughy-smiley-joyous-weepy-milisecond.

(The Dad did try and tell a few jokes coming down the aisle- to stop me from crying-a-river
{and ruining the make-up he'd paid for})
Too bad I didn't hear any of them on account of all the screaming emotions.

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When you've gotten control of the emotions (ha. lol) use them to be in every moment. When it is time for you to be an elegant, beautiful and composed bride, BE the elegant, beautiful and composed bride. When it is time for you to greet your guests, BE the gracious, humbled and appreciative host. When it is time for you to be witty and charming and deliver a speech from the heart, BE witty and charming and deliver your speech from the heart. When it is time for you to be the life, soul and rockstar of the party, BE the life and the soul and the rockstar of the party.

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(this picture: totally legit. totally on the toilet. Number 1 in case you were wondering.)


When you think of yourself as a bride, you will think of yourself as a beautiful shining-princess floating along with a radiant glow mingling with your adoring subjects guests. When you put your dress on, on your big day, you will absolutely feel like a beautiful glowing princess. It is impossible NOT to feel like a beautiful glowing princess - It's the innate power of the perfect wedding dress.

When you think of yourself as a bride however, you will not think about how heavy that dress is going to be - to lug around the whole night, you will not think about how you are going to eat or drink without ruining your perfectly-bridely make-up, you will not think about what's going to happen if you get some rogue spinach stuck in your teeth and you will certainly not think about the absolute MISSION it will be, to attempt a toilet-break in a dress that's twice the size of you and weighs the same as fully-grown midget. Let me tell you - it's a fekken HACK.

But, these are the real parts of your day. The parts that bring floating-princess-bride back to the real world. And let me tell you - getting married is the most real thing you will do in your entire life. Real Feelings. Real Emotion. Real People. Real Families. Real Decisions and Real Life.

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How gross are these pictures of me?

Totally gross.

But you know what?

There was a piece of chicken stuck in my teeth and I needed to get it out.

Yes, I could've asked people to "please-not-take-pictures-of-me-while-I-fish-this-chicken-out-my-mouth-because-I'm-in-a-wedding-dress-and-brides-don't-do-this" OR, I could be like a real person and say "there's a thing in my tooth! Can you see it? is it gone?". Your professional photographer will capture all your princess-like moments, all your beautiful memories and your bridely smiles. For the rest of it - be a real bride - because I can guarantee you, 40 years from now - you will only remember yourself as the perfect beautiful princessly-bride. So embrace the chicken-fishing, toilet-hustling real life moments of your day while you can.

And, if you marry the right man, I can guarantee that he will make you his beautiful-floating-princess in real life too.

(And No, it's not actually KFC that I'm eating in that picture, but Yes, we did have actual KFC holders - but more on that to follow).
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Dance with your father, Dance with your mother, Dance with your baby brother, Dance with your husband. It's a given, really. And I don't think I even need to include this, in this post because you will no doubt do it anyway - but these pictures are awesome and you really should dance your TRI-TONE shoes off.

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The mom and I - probably an ABBA hit,

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The brother teaching me his moves.

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As difficult as it may be to believe, there are probably some little people who are even more excited about the big day than you are. I was a flower girl for my aunts wedding when I was about 5. Generally my memory is shocking but I remember that day with such absolutely clarity. The flower girls had been instructed to have their hair curled. My mother crimped my hair. CRIMPED. Yep, Crimped. circa mid-eighties. I arrived at the wedding to see the other two flower girls with beautiful big curls and I had the crimp. It was traumatic. I silently cried about it for weeks after. I can also so clearly remember the ballerina slipper shoes I wore and the fairy-dress my gran had made. I remember dancing on the shoes of some of the "big boy" friends of my aunt and the basket of rose petals I had to throw - which is, of course, the most important job of any wedding. Never before in my life up to that point had I experienced such undiluted fairy-tale excitement.

For little people in your wedding, it's like the biggest most wonderful birthday party they will ever go to. They get to wear beautiful dresses, stay up like, dance with the big-people and eat wedding cake. They are just bursting with excitement. 

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"Che, this is the best party I've ever, ever been to" - actual words.

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Make time to party with your little people.

Because they will remember dancing with that beautiful princess-fairy-bride forever.
I promise.

(and lol warren in the background of those pictures)

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There will be plenty of family and friends who will have traveled very far to celebrate your wedding day with you - and of course will you celebrate with them - they make your wedding. Then, there is a whole entourage of "big people" who really make your wedding. The caterers, the waitrons, the photographers, the venue co-ordinators and every other "big person" who has had some influence in the smooth running of your day. Thank them. Take some snaps with them. They will appreciate it.
You will always always be able to take pics with your friends. They are your friends of course - but these "BIG PEOPLE" are the people who really make your wedding. So get involved.

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{Warren and I sneaking into the kitchen to thank the staff.}

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It sounds like an obvious thing. But really, there may be things that go wrong at your wedding - (in fact - there probably will be) - so make a conscious decision to let nothing bother you. If something even threatens to ruin your awesome-vibe - SQUASH IT. KILL IT. Build a bridge and GET OVER IT. Trust me you will be glad that you did.

Example: In the picture above I was crouched on the floor (I needed a front row seat) watching something spectacular (lol - I'll have to do a whole post on what we were watching). My friend Sally (in the yellow) was standing right behind me. Somebody bumped her. She accidentally tipped her entire glass of wine on my head. It wasn't a splash, it wasn't a bit of spillage. It was the entire glass. It went everywhere.

All over my head, all over my dress, all over my face, all in my eyeballs.

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It looks like I'm crying in this picture. 
I'm not  - I'm just trying to remove the wine from my eyes.

Because let me tell you, wine = ACID.

and ACID in your EYEBALLS.

Warren and the mom came to the rescue - they are trying to use kitchen tea-towels to dry me off. But there was so much wine - it was not enough. I had to go to the bathroom to use a bath-towel.

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Now, I could have let this totally bum me out and ruin my awesome vibe - and let me say having a glass of wine tipped on your head on your wedding day, in your wedding dress is NOT ideal - but it is also the only wedding you're ever going to get - and there are no "do-overs"if you get to the end of the night and realise "mmm I probably shouldn't have reacted like such a bitchy-diva-bride" so instead, I soaked off as much wine as I could, said a little "Well at least it's not red!", clipped back my acid-wine-hair and emerged from the bathroom ready to re-join the celebration of LOVE!

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It also gave Warren a great excuse to lick alcohol off my chest:

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Silver lining: tick.

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Getting married is a serious business: agreed. But by accepting a man (or woman's) proposal - you would have already factored all the seriousness of that question into your response. Your wedding (and especially your reception) is a celebration of the life to come that you will share together - don't take yourself too seriously - or better yet - just be yourself. I'm generally a happy/fun/comical type of person so when the minister asked "if there is any person present who has any reason for these two to not be joined in matrimony" I turned around to give the congregation a 'friendly' death-stare. People laughed and it made everyone relax. They thought I was joking. I wasn't. {And as a side note - you are much more receptive to taking everything in when you are relaxed: see point 1}

The three pictures in this section - are right before we entered the reception venue: Warren and I were waiting outside for our MC to introduce us. We were joking with each other that "wouldn't it be funny if this door was locked and we were stuck outside?". Turns out, the door wasn't locked - but it did get stuck on a floor mat on the inside of the door. Warr and I spent a good 2. 5 minutes struggling to break into our own wedding venue - we resorted to 'fake' bashing down the door until someone came and removed the floor mat on the inside. It was hilarious - if, of course, you choose to see the lighter side of it and decide to not take yourself too seriously.

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And... finally - we made it inside!
{Warren: turning the flushing-shade of pink}

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{laugh with your whole self}

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You will hear this from everybody.
It's true.

One of my favourite moments with Warren was right after our wedding ceremony. We opted to have the bridal party leave the church first, followed by the congregation and Warren and I leaving last. I can't tell you how much I loved this arrangement for several reasons -

  • The flower girls had rose petals that they wanted to throw. They left the church first with the bridesmaids and groomsmen - which gave the bridesmaids enough time to help sort out the rose petals for the flower girls - before the congregation led out. 
  • The congregation followed and could file out and take rose petals on their way out.
  • The music we had chosen as a recessional was very important to me and we got to hear it for the longest time.
  • When Warren and I left the church we had a crowd of smiling happy people to walk into.
  • And most importantly, Warren and I could spend those first few quiet minutes together right after the ceremony, as husband and wife - while the bridal party and congregation left the church. (pic above)

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Soak up all the husband-wife moments.

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This is the one day when you can be absolutely in the thick of everything. Embrace it. Get fully stuck into ALL the things. You won't regret it.

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Warr, his cousins, me and my mom, on the floor - photo-bombing.

And - when I saw my bridesmaid's boyfriend getting down with a set of push-ups on the dance floor - 
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I joined him.
To a crowd of cheering guests

And I hope there is a shot of this that emerges somewhere - because, it happened -

in a wedding dress weighing more than 5kgs and all -
Man push-ups people,
MAN push-ups.

{I'd say I managed about 20?
Stu... maybe you hit about 12?
It's ok, you can blame the wine.}

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This is one day in forever.

After opening up indieBerries a series of guest contributions while I was in the final stages of wedding planning - I received an email from Marita giving me her wedding advice - one of her pieces of advice was to "eat breakfast in your wedding dress". I thought this was the most epic piece of advice I've ever heard - so the Sunday morning after the wedding (when all the family and friends where coming over for a big breakfast fry-up), I got Warren to help me get back into my (dirtied-up-all-partied-out) wedding dress. Lace-up an' all. We had scrambled egg and bacon breakfast rolls out on the lawn in the sunshine, with all the kids, family and friends -


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After eating breakfast in my wedding dress - I took it to the next level. Once our big family breakfast had ended and the family had started heading back home - We decided to go out for lunch with some of Warr's Australian mates in the Midlands.

I totally wore my wedding dress.

because this is only one moment in forever - and why ever not?

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eeeee Sunday post-wedding-adventure-excitement!
 ...and Look at that handsome man in his wedding suit!

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We arrived at Sapore in the midlands in our wedding attire - (and i did almost chicken out-warr convinced me not to) the big group of people having their Sunday lunch couldn't believe they were seeing a bridal couple in their full wedding attire from the night before - they sent a bunch of free drinks to us for being awesome

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Me - smashing ribs in my wedding dress.
The Sunday After...

I (reluctantly) took off my wedding dress at 5pm the day after - right before we opened pressies with all our folks and went out to dinner with "the in-laws" before they headed off back home -

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So to sum up -

I let myself be overwhelmed with happiness and emotion. I was poised and elegant when necessary, I was a rockstar-push-up-champion when needed. I got wine in my eyeballs/dress and hair without letting it ruin my vibe. I laughed loudly and whole-heartedly - I never took myself too seriously and I never pretended to be a prissy-untouchable-bride. I allowed myself to be giddy with excitement. I danced with the flower girls, I thanked all the waiters, I jammed with the photographer, I partied with my brother. I danced with my father. I savoured every. single. glorious moment with my amazing new husband. Oh, and I ate Sunday Lunch ribs in my wedding dress... NOBODY may tell me I was not the most AWESOME bride. 



You can look forward to some posts about -

  • Why we had KFC holders as part of our canapes.
  • The thing I was watching when I got wine in my eyeballs.
  • The amazing gift from Keri
  • And plenty more wedding tips, DIY crafts and awesome ideas that went down.

Now go share the love.