Family is where life begins

I’ve been living away from the county I grew up in for over 10 years, but recently I made the move back due to a job change. One of the things I realised when I arrived back was how out of touch I was with the people living in the area. Even though it’s somewhere I grew up and all the external buildings and streets are familiar, I felt like I was walking on unfamiliar territory with my friends and family who I’d lost touch with. Being so far away means you miss out on the little things that happen on a daily basis and I’d forgotten to stay in regular contact with those I’d previously been so close to. The expression out of touch, out of mind never felt so real.

The realisation hit me at my cousin’s wedding where I saw many relatives who I hadn’t spoken to in years. I left the next day feeling great after having caught up on their lives but also sad I had missed out on many moments with them.

I was determined to change this.

Making time in an active life

I’m a busy person so making time for every member of my extended family was nigh on impossible so I thought I’d start off with just one. After moving house I was closer to them, which made it easier to arrange a visit. One weekend I travelled over to see them and it was great to visit the house I’d been to many times as a young child. There were no awkward moments like you sometimes experience when meeting an old friend, no questions asked about why you hadn’t stayed in touch and most importantly I felt happy and relaxed to be around them.

I think as you grow older you realise it’s more important to have a handful of really close friends rather than hundreds of distant ones who you just say hi to on the street.

Family is one of the most important things in your life and we should treasure those we are lucky enough to have in our lives. I’m so glad I made the move to reconnect and will continue to do this when I have the chance.

Lives go fast so don’t forget those who help move and drive you along to be your best self.

The politics associated with wedding planning

In October 2017 my boyfriend proposed to me and became my fiancé. Thus started the process of organising a wedding day. For someone who hasn’t kept a wedding book nor has any idea of what they want, this has proved tricky.

Understanding the technicalities

wedding 1

We set out with the intention of only inviting people we wanted to share our day with. The words ‘it’s your day, you can do whatever you want’ were ringing in our ears thanks to our parents’ kind advice. Due to this advice it was an understandable shock to the system when the same voices expressed concern over certain people who weren’t invited. People who we don’t speak to or even worse even knew existed. ‘You’ve got to invite them, I went to the past two weddings they were at’, well if a good attendance record gets you an invite to the most memorable day of two strangers lives then sign me up!

The problem with inviting the couple who live at number 28 on the street adjoining your grandma’s house, is the cost implications. The day is already expensive and overpriced (thanks to the wedding industry) so adding two extra people on adds up to a lot of extra money. It comes to the point where you have to put your foot down and say no. This leads me on to the term ‘Bridezilla’. Is this really such a bad term? Is it not understandable when you realise how much pressure and hype surrounds a wedding day and for everything to be perfect?

Now I understand some people take this to the extreme – making obscene demands to wedding guests, however I’ve had the term thrown at me a few times when I’ve said no to requests or when I ask for certain things to be in place on the day. It’s not unreasonable to make a few demands, especially when you’re paying over the odds for it anyway. What frustrates me is when people get annoyed with me for wanting what I want. Those reassuring words about it being our day said at the start of the process quickly fade into the distance and are replaced with ‘you need to invite him because it would be unfair not to’.

Remember:

  • You can’t please everyone and more disagreements happen when you try
  • At the end of the day you’re not going to please everyone, if you do upset people due to silly disagreements then try and decide whether they’re worth having in your life anyway
  • It’s the only day you can get away with being demanding so do what you want to do (within reason)
  • Your family and friends should want this to be as special as it can be for you so make sure they rally round and support you

Current stage

We have just finished designing our website with all the details of where to be and how long it will last. This was the easier option for us as it kept the price down (no postage or paper invitations) and keeps everything in one place so is easy to track. We’re currently gathering up email addresses to send the invite to the lucky few people and then we’ll wait for the RSVP’s to come flooding back (hey we can dream!).

Things we have done:

  • Booked the venue
  • Bought THE dress
  • Decided on bridesmaids
  • Bought bridesmaid dresses
  • Chosen our cake
  • Selected our wedding breakfast (Spanish tapas)

Do it your way

To sum up we are getting married in the North East of England in a French/Mediterranean chateau with Spanish food for the wedding breakfast. If that isn’t doing exactly what you want then I don’t know what is!