Advice From A NewlyWed {Plus A Sneak Peek}

Remember me? The "California Casual" bride? Well I've finally come up for air post-wedding and am so excited to share some advice (and a few amazing photos!) with you all. I'm sitting here in my living room, surrounded by boxes, thank you notes and slightly beat up wedding decorations, reflecting on the amazingness that just occurred over the last month. I'm happy, exhausted, overwhelmed with love and excited to begin the next chapter of our life!

The wedding was incredible. The weather was absolutely perfect, the details came together and everyone had an amazing time. There was so much love during the whole weekend...from the rehearsal dinner excitement, to the magical wedding day to the lovely Sunday BBQ that wrapped up the weekend. We felt so blessed all weekend long.

In thinking about my advice for other brides, I think it can be wrapped up in one word: perspective. If you can keep the right perspective of what the day is all about, a lot of stress can be avoided. For us, the day was all about our love and the friends and family who helped us get where we are today.

At the beginning of the planning process, I told myself not to sweat the small stuff. I knew that no one would remember if we served salmon or cod, if the flowers were orange or yellow or if the bridesmaids dresses were strapless or not. This did end up putting a little extra pressure on myself for the bigger decisions such as venue and dress, but it did help me take a step back whenever I found myself getting caught up in little details.

I also found that, for each key person involved, especially parents, there was something that was particularly important to them. So let them own it! My mother-in-law loves flowers, so she was very involved in selecting a florist and working with her on designs. For me, all the printed materials became a big focus. So I took the lead of all the paper goods.

I think my absolute favorite thing we did was involve our friends and family in the wedding. My uncle and a close friend or ours shared officiating duties, which made for an incredibly personal and memorable ceremony. My dad involved my wedding party in his toast and we had two very talented friends perform our first dance song. All of these touches made the wedding feel personal, warm and comfortable, which was exactly what we were going for.

All in all, the day was incredible. It was perfect in its imperfections. And ultimately, I came out married to a wonderful man! And then we topped everything off with an incredible honeymoon in France.

Really, what more could a girl ask for?

Photos by Ken Kienow