Wedding Wednesday – Engagement Photos

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One of the first things we did after getting engaged and booking a venue was booking a photographer. A friend of mine from high school is an amazing photographer and I knew I wanted her to do our photos. We’re spending a lot of money on our photographs, and it’s something The Banker wasn’t too happy about at first. However, they are something we’ll have forever, and we want them to be beautiful and we want to treasure them always.

A few weeks ago The Banker and I headed back to my hometown to have our engagement photos done. It may seem strange that we waited so long, but we knew we weren’t doing Save The Dates, so we waited so that we could do a unique shoot. We wanted to go skating for our photos, something we haven’t seen anyone else do (and we argue over who had the idea originally), but something that we love to do – The Banker grew up playing hockey, and I ringette.

We went home on a Saturday and got a few wedding related things done, and on our way back to my parents’ house I suggested we drive by the venue just to see it again and refresh our memories of the space. We could hardly believe our eyes when we saw that there was an ice rink on the exact spot where we will be having our tent! I immediately texted our photographer to see if we could do our skating shots there, and she gladly agreed.

On Sunday we went first to a park and did some photos there. It started to snow just when we got in position. It was freezing, but we didn’t care because the photos turned out to be amazing!!

View More: http://kelseywaterfield.pass.us/taylorlovesjacqui

After we did a bunch of photos at the park, we went to a beautiful church and took some pictures in front of the gorgeous, large door there. Then we finished up with our skating photos. There was only one family there, and they were very nice and stayed to one side of the rink so that we could get some beautiful photos.

View More: http://kelseywaterfield.pass.us/taylorlovesjacqui

We have one more thing checked off our list now, and I am even more excited to see how our big day will turn out. And I know this is the worst attitude for someone to have, but I would pay her 10times over to get photos this beautiful!

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Wedding Wednesday – Some exciting news

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I have some exciting news today! I went shopping this past weekend, and I said “Yes to the Dress!”

I was so lucky; I was able to have my mom, dad, and sister (and Maid of Honour) there with me while I was shopping. It was a relatively painless process. I tried on five dresses, and it was the final one that I loved. I won’t describe it here – I want it to a total surprise for The Banker! But I will say that it’s a dress that I can dance all night in!

It was right around my price point, which I was so happy about, but it ended up not to be a worry. When I was finalizing the paperwork, my mom surprised me and said she was paying for the dress. I was in shock, my parents are already giving us money towards the wedding, and I never expected them to pay for my dress as well. It was such a fun day and I loved that my whole family got to be there!

Other than that, we haven’t done much since the last Wedding Wednesday post. We blocked some rooms at the hotel in my hometown and got in touch with a florist. We also signed the contract for our photographer and put down a $500 deposit.

Our next steps are to book an officiant (this is way harder than I expected) and book the florist. We also need to look around for DJs. Hopefully we can get this done quickly and relax for the holidays 🙂

Any tips on our next to-dos?

Wedding Wednesday – The Big To-Dos

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Well, not a lot has been done since the last time I wrote about our wedding progress. However, we do have a list of things that need to get done shortly.

We have booked the caterer, and put down a deposit. We are excited about the food! We both consider ourselves foodies, and these caterers use local produce (which we love!) and are so accommodating! They had both of our favourite appetizers, crab cakes and spanakopita, are willing to give choices for the main, and they had crème brulee! That is my favourite dessert ever, and I’m so happy I can have it on my special day! It was a no-brainer to go with them, especially when I know that they have a good reputation.
This is the only money we’ve spent since the last update, and the deposit was just $200.

Our list of to-dos that need to be done quickly are:

Find and book an officiant
Neither The Banker or I are really religious. We both grew up  going to church and we have faith, but our beliefs are different and that makes it harder to find an officiant. We need to find someone in the area of my hometown (where the wedding is happening), who will do a non-denominational ceremony, and who is still available for our date. This is the number one item           I’d like to get checked off our list.

Block hotel rooms
There is only one hotel in my hometown (and it’s brand-new, did I mention The Banker calls me a hick on the regular?), so it’ll be easy to decide where to block them. We’ll likely also block out some rooms in the nearest city where they will be less expensive. We’re getting married in August, which I’ve been told is the busy season for hotels in this area, so we need to book soon!

Try on dresses
Man, oh, man, I think this is going to be hard. I have no clue what kind of dress I want to wear. This whole process has been difficult because I was definitely not the kid that dreamed of her wedding day, so I have no vision to be honest. All I know is that the wedding is simple and small, and I want a dress that will fit with that idea.
I do have an appointment for November 1st to try on dresses – wish me luck! And stay tuned to hear about my experience.

Hopefully we can cross these off the list in the next week or two and then maybe we’ll put wedding planning on the back burner for the holiday season (it’s coming up quickly!)

Any advice for the to-do list items we’ve got?

Wedding Wednesday #3 – Some Big Bookings

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It’s time for another Wedding Wednesday, and I’m very excited! We’ve done a lot this past week 🙂

What have we done?

Since the last update we’ve got a lot of the big stuff done, it’s starting to come together! We looked at a couple venues and booked one that we loved. We also booked our photographer, a wonderful friend from high school who went to school for photography and takes amazing photos. I’m super awkward at taking pictures, so it’s nice to know that they’ll at least be taken by someone that I’m comfortable with.

We asked our wedding party as well. We’re only having one attendant each (it’s going to be small, and we think it’s silly to have a majority of our friends who will be there standing up with us). I’m having my sister and The Banker is having his best friend.

We also have talked with a caterer, but haven’t officially booked them yet. We have some ideas for décor and have lists of what we’ll need to rent and take care of ourselves on the day.

 What have we spent?

We bought our invites (we’re going to DIY them – hopefully they work out). We got them so early because Michael’s had a 50% off coupon and we each bought one box, for just $31.06 each. I also spend $14.67 getting the rest of my sister/Maid of Honour’s gift (how I asked her). I’m so happy with how it turned out (look for the photo at the end of the post!).
This added to the $37.20 I had already spent gives a grand total of: $82.93

What are our next steps?

  1. Booking our caterer
  2. Blocking hotel rooms
  3. Say “Yes to the dress!”

Things are really starting to get real now. I’m very excited, but know that after these things are done, it’ll likely be quite slow for the next few months before we pick up planning again.

For anyone interested, here’s how I asked my sister to be my Maid of Honour

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Wedding Wednesday – Can’t Buys

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In order to save a little extra money before the wedding (and, let’s face it, it’s just good practice), I’ve come up with a short list of things I won’t buy until after the wedding. Included on my list are magazines, cosmetics, nail polish, and breakfast before work.

1. Magazines
I have always had a bad habit of grabbing a magazine while standing in a checkout line, or shopping for a few when I have a couple of days off.
If I were to buy just 2 $4 magazines a month, it would cost me $96 in a year. Some months I would buy more, and others less, but I thought this was a pretty good (if not low) estimate.

2. Cosmetics
Now, I’m not a big everyday makeup wearer. I’ll typically put on eyeliner and mascara, and pencil in my brows (brows are everything, and if you don’t believe, you need to go here). However, on the weekends if I’m doing something special, I like to do a bit more and I love using different products and plenty of eyeshadow colours. I already have a lot of cosmetics for the use I get out of them, and don’t need any more. I simply find it fun to browse the makeup aisles and it feels fun to grab something new. But, for now, I won’t be buying any new cosmetics unless I need them (i.e. it has to be either eyeliner, mascara, or eyebrow pencil/powder).
If I spent an average of $10 a month on cosmetics (again, a lot of times it would be lower and others it would be higher), I would spend $120 in a year.

3. Nail Polish
Oh boy, this one will be hard. What a silly thing to have a hard time giving up, but I absolutely love nail polish! I will paint my nails a couple of times a week most weeks. But, I have (I counted) exactly 35 bottles of nail polish. Somehow, I still find shades I don’t have and that I absolutely need (ya right!). Hopefully this will help me empty a couple of bottles and it’ll be extra special when I do get to buy another bottle.
This is the same as cosmetics, I might buy one bottle, around $10 each month, for a cost of $120.

4. Breakfast before work
I am horrible for this! During the week, I’m good to have breakfast at home even when teaching, but on the weekends I love to stop at Tim Horton’s and get a coffee and bagel on my way to the cheese shop. It’s entirely unnecessary, but it’s become such a habit that I do it nearly every week.
If I spent just $5 a weekend (stopping only once a weekend, which is a fairly low estimate), I would spend $260 in a year. That is insane!

This is a short list of things that I’m not allowing myself to buy, and I don’t think I’ll have trouble sticking to it. I hope to add to the list, and save even more.
As it stands now, I could be saving a minimum of $596!
It’s not a lot, but it will help, and it’s not cutting back on anything that really affects my quality of life.

What do you cut out when you’re trying to save? Any tips for me?

Wedding Wednesday #1 – First Steps

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 I’m so excited that we could share our big news with you all last week! I decided I would update our progress every week or two (or once a month when we haven’t done much), and keep track of our spending in a series I’ll call “Wedding Wednesdays”.

Even though we just got engaged a couple of weeks ago I feel so behind. Apparently everything needs to be done super far in advance. (gah! I’m not grown up enough to handle it!) Also, I have to admit, it’s been hard for us to get everything together. I’ve never been the type of girl who dreams of her wedding, or knows what she wants at all. This has made the planning process a lot more difficult. There are WAY too many options when having a wedding!

 

What have we done?

We’ve chosen a time of year, and are deciding between two venues (this will determine the date for us – the date we wanted is booked already at one of the venues).

We’ve looked at caterers, rentals, décor, and favours. (And made no decisions whatsoever.)

We’ve chosen our wedding party (but are yet to ask them – oops!).

We’ve also picked our colours, made a budget, and started a wedding binder.

 

What have we spent?

Very little. So far, I’ve spent $29.35 on a gift to ask my maid of honour if she’ll be in the wedding party. We’ve also spent $7.85 on stuff for our centerpieces.

Total: $37.20 (Hey, big spender!)

 

What are our next steps?

  1. Locking down a venue and caterer, including bar.
  2. Asking our wedding party.
  3. Trying on dresses.

 

Have any of you recently planned, or are planning, a wedding? Any tips for us?

Update – Some big news!

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So, I know I have been very absent on the blog lately. Sorry about that! It’s been a busy time, but things are slowing down now. (The start of the school year doesn’t tend to be a busy time for us substitute teachers.)

However, I have some big news! The Banker and I are engaged!! I was in complete and total shock when it happened and I had a smile plastered on my face for hours afterward! 

I returned on a Friday from a trip to Cuba with my family (more on that later), and The Banker came on Saturday (August 23rd) to spend time with my family and bring me home. My parents were at a birthday party in another town, squashing The Bankers plans to ask them for my hand in marriage ahead of time. I didn’t help, telling him that day that we had to rush back home Sunday morning for more camp stuff (way to go!). So, he waited a while and when my parents didn’t return within a couple of hours, he asked if I wanted to go for a walk before dinner. I said sure, not thinking anything of it. We walked to a park in my hometown and we sat to talk for a while. He got down on one knee and asked me to marry him! It was so exciting!! And completely unexpected. 

Cue perma-smile! I didn’t shed a tear until we told my family. My mom was in utter shock and then she cried and hugged us tighter than ever! My dad and my sister were crying too – cue my tears! We had a wonderful evening of celebrating and enjoying our time! 

I am going to chronicle our planning and financials for the wedding on this blog – so stay tuned! I also promise to dedicate more time and get back to posting a few times a week 🙂 

What’s been keeping all of you busy these past few weeks?