Last year on New Year's Eve my life took an unexpected turn. What I thought was a casual holiday lunch date, with my boyfriend at the time, quickly turned into the moment I would start the process of planning the biggest party of my life along with the merging and creating of a new family. With engagement season among us, my social media feeds are filled with guys on one knee and ring fingers with extra sparkle. So now that you're engaged, what do you do next?
Enjoy the Day
First, enjoy the day! You and your fiance will be surrounded by so much love and so many clinking glasses that you won't have time to think about anything else. We chose to wait until the next day to post any updates on social media, allowing us to first share the news with our family and close friends who were all coming over for New Year's Eve... and engagement celebrations that night.
Length of EngagementDeciding how long you would like to be engaged is another important step. Some couples decide to be engaged just long enough to save up for the next ring, while others choose based on the season they would like to tie the knot. We knew we wanted to enjoy the engagement and get married in the spring, so we set a day in May 2015 - one year and 5 months of engagement time. I normally suggest a yearlong engagement. This will give you enough time to nail down your preferred vendors and plan the wedding, honeymoon, bachelorette party, engagement party.... you get the picture.
Believe it or not, this determines everything. The budget of your wedding will affect everything from the guest list to the venue. Let your family decide what they are comfortable with contributing, then find ways to start saving your own money. We opened a joint savings account through Ally with a high interest rate and opted for a smaller guest list, allowing for more money to go into our honeymoon and venue.
Meet with Wedding PlannersOnce your date and general location is decided upon, start researching and meeting wedding planners in the area, especially if you are someone who is easily overwhelmed by wedding plans. Your wedding planner will listen to you, get to know you as a couple, wrap their head around your style and budget, and present you with a clearer vision of your day. This person should make you feel at ease and take on wedding planning responsibilities that are difficult for you to juggle.
Most importantly, remember to fill the planning process with love and fun! Make decisions that are based in love and practicality and you'll never go wrong. Photo credit: Lauren Louise Photography - http://laurenlouisephotography.com
Jenny of Jenny Does Weddings is a blogger, wedding planner, and stylist who can be found spending her weekdays blogging and her weekends' thrifting.