My wedding was beautiful and fun and awesome by all accounts, but now I have the "shoulda-coulda-wouldas" and it's getting me down. I keep telling myself I need to just remember the good stuff and accept the things I can't change — but it's hard to do sometimes. That said, please, learn from my mistakes! Here are all the things I didn't think of before the wedding:
1. Think of the people you MOST want individual photos with. Make a list and GIVE IT TO SOMEONE ELSE so they can round them up, or just TELL someone else. Don't keep it all to yourself.
2. If you're having a photo booth, delegate people to go and hassle everyone into using it. At our friends' wedding two weeks ago, my husband and I wandered around wearing silly hats and giant sunglasses and made everyone come and be silly in the photo booth. You can also tell your MC to keep mentioning it.
3. Give someone YOUR camera or mobile and let them have fun with it. When we got home on the wedding night, we found that a friend of mine had taken my iPhone and gotten snap-happy with photos of our friends, herself, my family, and us. It was so awesome to have them to look through that same night!
5. Give your vows to someone at the start of the day, so you don't do what I did and leave them behind where you were getting ready and have a mad freaking panic on the way to the wedding! (Thank jeebus I'd emailed them to myself a couple of days before.) Which brings me to…
6. Allllways have a back up. Back up copy, back up emailed version, back up printing plan, back up music.
7. Be realistic about the aisle-walk timing. We practiced walking down the aisle the night before, but on the day of, the bridesmaids walked WAY too fast and the song had to be cut off abruptly rather than playing out.
8. Delegate bride/groom drink-fetching! I was sans drink most of the night and, being the bride, I got stopped every time I tried to go anywhere and ended up stuck chatting with people!
9. Do your speeches and cake cutting early so that you can then relax more, and so that elderly/young/photographer can leave if they need to.
10. Make your informational wedding signs early. Despite talking repeatedly about all of the little signs we needed to display at the wedding, we never had a chance to make them. There was no sign telling people the flavors of the cupcakes or that there was a whole plate of vegan/gluten free ones.
11. Energy drinks about halfway through the night are a REALLY good idea. I don't think I have EVER been that tired.
12. Write a blog post like this on the Offbeat Bride Tribe to help other brides. It has made a world of difference and has truly helped me to move on and remember all the great things, and how many things DIDN'T go wrong that I should be thankful for!
13. Be proud. Look around at the work you did, at all the people who came to play, and breathe.
Here endeth the lesson.