How to Take Care of Your Pre and Post Wedding Planning

Today's guest post is all about wedding planning. Tell me in the comments... how long did it take you to plan your wedding? We started in August and got married in May! 


Your wedding is said by some to be the best day of your life. While this might well be true, it’s also true to say that weddings are notoriously stressful. There is a lot of planning to do in the lead up to the wedding, and also afterwards. While many people focus on the former and give very little attention to the latter, both are important, especially regarding your mental wellbeing.

Read on for some pre and post wedding planning tips.

Pre wedding planning
Post-wedding planning
Look after yourself

12 months prior to the big day, book your wedding venue and your reception location. Also start to research suppliers of important products and services such as florists, photographers, hair and make-up artists and cake makers. Spend a month or so looking into your options and then book your chosen selection of professionals. Start hunting for your wedding outfits.

When you have 8-10 months to go, book your DJ or band for your wedding reception. Also look into accommodation for guests and either book it, or let guests know what they need to do. Now is also a good time to book your honeymoon. Doing it in advance will ensure you get what you really want, and you’ll probably also get a better deal.

6-8 months before the date, order your wedding dress and start planning your bachelor and bachelorette parties, if you’ve chosen to do these. Alternatively, go modern and arrange a pre-wedding party for everyone to be together.

With 4-6 months to go, choose your wedding party outfits, organise the legalities for the marriage, and book wedding transport.

2-3 months before the day, send out invites, buy your wedding rings and gifts for the wedding party. Finalise your catering plans.

At 2 weeks to go, finalise your guest list and seating plan, and confirm all of the previously made arrangements.

Spend the next two weeks treating yourself to spa days and preparing for your big day.

·       Ensure you’ve cleared the venue of your personal possessions
·       Pack for your honeymoon
·       Drop your wedding dress at the dry cleaner
·       Write thank you notes to your guests
·       Make a wedding album

Following the mayhem of a arranging your marriage, and indeed getting married, you may suffer from post wedding blues. It’s normal and understandable to feel lost after the wedding is over, not to mention tired and overwhelmed from the metaphorical rollercoaster of emotions. It’s important that you allow yourself to feel whatever you’re feeling. Talk to those close to you about your emotions.

There are ways to avoid or combat post wedding blues. After all the excitement, you may feel lonely, even though you have your new spouse by your side. To help take care of yourself, arrange to see friends regularly and perhaps take up a new hobby to fill the gap of planning a wedding. Treat yourself to some of the beauty treatments that you booked in before the wedding. If you’re feeling low or anxious, or have concerns about your mental health, seek help from a doctor or specialist center such as

Most of all, try to relax and enjoy your new marriage. Remember why you spent all those months planning to marry the person you love. Now it’s all done, you can enjoy your next chapter and all the wonder it will bring.

Meal Planning Monday

I honestly don't know how we got here, the past several months have flown by. Blame it on the ultra busy student pastor life... we are running quick. 

Somehow though, it's nearly the holidays. It's cold. And last I checked I had a newborn but that isn't the case anymore. I blinked and it's mid-November. 

Monday | BBQ Pork Shoulder, Balsamic Brussel Sprouts, and Sweet Potato Casserole - all from Aldi

Tuesday | leftovers

Wednesday | 45 Minute Coq Au Vin that I never got to last week.

Thursday | Red Beans & Rice

Friday | Leftovers

Saturday | Eating Out

Sunday | Church Thanksgiving Dinner

Meal Planning Monday

It's another one of those weeks. Mama has had a virus and been sick forever and I am finally just not eating real food today. So the delay is strictly based on the fact that thinking of food wasn't my jam over the weekend. 

I probably need to either quit being sick or change our meals a bit. We had our health screening and my HCL was low. I've eaten saltines or rice for days now. My blood pressure was also low, but I was programmed to do deep breathing every time I saw a nurse while I was pregnant with Harry and my BP was insane... now I can drop that puppy real easy. Oops! Next time I won't deep breathe like I'm trying to knock it down from 149 again... it was only 100 today. Anyway... more walnuts and fish (but I don't like much fish). 

Monday | Chicken Picatta

Tuesday | Taco Tuesday with the youth group

Wednesday leftovers

Thursday | Marry Me Chicken with Mashed Sweet Potatoes and Brussel Sprouts

Friday | Leftovers

Saturday Creamy Bowtie Pasta with Onions, Spinach, and Mushrooms

Sunday 45 Minute Coq Au Vin 

Elliot | 1 Year Old

Elliot's Current Stats:

❊ Age – 1 year old! 
❊ Weight & Height – 24 lbs and 28 inches long. He's wearing a size 5 diapers and 12/18 month clothing. Mainly for width... the legs have to be rolled. 

❊ Eat – Elliot is showing his picky side. He prefers carbs. Rice. Grits. Potatoes. Maybe it's because this mama was dead to the world and didn't go full blown baby led weaning on him like I did with Harrison. He has many more preferences than his brother did. 

❊ Sleep – Sleeping through the night! 

❊ Recent Milestones – Cruising all over the place. He says bye bye and waves, Elliot will also say mama but only when he's upset and trying to get my attention. Sadly the little crawfish baby still hasn't figured out forward in his walker lol! 

❊ Special Moments – He is obsessed with Harrison and follows him everywhere. He watches Harrison when he's eating and tries to go behind him and take any spoon left behind and use it the same way Harrison did. We had a good laugh recently too, if you haven't heard Elliot's laugh you are missing out. I was smacking Harry with a pillow and he was dramatically falling over, Elliot was absolutely dying laughing at Harrison. 

❊ Mama’s Experience – Slowly but surely right? I'm much more for the ease of the newborn phase or anything after 18 months. This clingy one year old baby is rough on a mama who likes to go and do. He has demands and makes them very clear. 

❊ Comparison - You aren't getting the fully edited Elliot photo but here is a look at just how different they truly are. Same shirt and photo backdrop, but totally different faces, skin tones, and hair. Lucky for me Elliot also got the pretty baby curls like his brother had. 

Life Lately

Elliot's one year post will be up soon, I've just been editing  photos here and there as I get a chance.

Bare with me, I've been sick as a dog since Sunday afternoon. The kids at school think I'm nuts because I also haven't worn makeup... but why where it when you're about to blow your nose constantly.

Harrison had a blast on Halloween as per his usual. This child loves a holiday and one that allows you to gather candy is even better. We just went to the Trunk r Treat at church and that was plenty of tricking and treating for this mama. 

Elliot meanwhile, he isn't allowed to laugh in photos anymore. The child does not have a pretty laugh. He's a full on tossing your head back, turning beet red, and ceasing to breathe kind of laugher. 

Jeremy had the idea that we should all dress up this year... I doubt this becomes a yearly thing. Mama is apparently not a medium in an adult onesie. Found that out the hard way. 

The birthday cake, it was great and quickly turned into mom's daily treat after work. If you haven't made this layer cake... you need to. 

It's officially been cold enough that frost has hit. It was so cold the first of November that my car actually still had frozen spots when I got to work. Not to mention Jeremy's trunk wouldn't even open for me. 

Heaven for this winter lover! 

It's been staying chilly and that is something we don't see on the regular in South Louisiana. 

Plus... hello open doors! 

Oh, and with the coming of November has also come the end of nursing our youngest baby. I was ready for it to end this time. I think had we not moved I wouldn't have felt this way, but this new phase of life has thrown me off enough that I didn't enjoy stressing over milk. If anything I've learned a few things I'll do different when and if I have another. When I took a break from pumping this summer my supply tanked and it was a hot mess from then off and I never recovered. 

But with that I am able to get back to using Retinol. Just so happens that back when I was pregnant I ordered a bottle of Buffet serum from The Ordinary and they accidentally sent me their Retinol 1%, I was told to keep it and I've hoarded it away in my beauty drawer. This week I busted it out and am using it nearly like I did RetinA. 

Granted RetinA was twice a week, but I am using this every other day... washing my face, waiting about 10 minutes, putting Retinol on, waiting 20, putting on my moisturizer and then going to bed. I can't find a good post anywhere about how to use The Ordinary Retinol so I thought the safest way would be to mirror my use with RetinA. The squalene in this is supposed to make it much more gentle on your skin and you won't see the RetinA peeling. 

As soon as I'm done with this bottle I'm ordering tried and true RetinA though. 

Fall Picture Outtakes

I wanted to do our yearly pumpkin patch photo but it was an absolute bust this year. With the patches being open on the weekends here it limited the time we could go. 

It only took me looking outside and seeing the orange glow in the trees in front of our house to stop stressing and just plop the kids outside our front door. They turned out so good it might actually become our Christmas card this year. 

Elliot can't just laugh. He belly laughs and throws his head back, making him particularly awkward to photograph. I thought this turned out cute though, everyone was copying Jeremy. 

Elliot was done, and leaving. Harrison had a cute face.

They need to coordinate this better. 

Elliot looked adorable. Harrison was mad that I even suggested we take photos. 

Teary eyed but cute. 

And last but not least of the outtakes... Harrison picked up the blanket and said "That was 3 minutes Mama, you said 3 minutes."

And we were done.

Meal Planning Tuesday

Y'all these fall temps just make me want to skip work, open the doors, drink coffee, and cook all the soup. 

I've got some disagreement about the "all the soup" portion, but in the course of 50 years I should get soup once in a blue moon... needless to say that moon is happening twice this week. 

Monday | Bacon Cheeseburger Skillet with a Caesar Salad

Tuesday | Keto Sausage Balls with Omelettes

Wednesday | Beef & Vegetable Soup

Thursday | Ordering a Pumpkin Pizza from Papa John's!

Friday | leftovers

Saturday | Chicken Scampi with Garlic Parmesan Rice

Sunday | Creamy Mushroom & Chicken Wild Rice Soup

Lunch this week is Buffalo Dill Chicken Salad with Mary's Gone Crackers. These crackers are seriously so yummy! I've wanted to try them for ages but our grocery didn't carry them, but they have them here. Breakfast (which isn't actually breakfast because I do intermittent fasting and I eat this in the afternoon is a Orgain Protein Shake. Just realized I could get them cheaper at Sam's Club... so there ya go.

Simply Earth | The Monthly Essential Oil Recipe Box

I recently got in my Simply Earth Essential Oil Recipe Box as well as their Bonus Box that includes all the goodies I'd need to mix up any essential oil recipe they send. 

Needless to say it's been a gloomy week in Birmingham so excuse the photo quality. But with that said nothing makes me want to run my diffusers like overcast cold weather. They've really taken the place of candles in my home. 

Let's get to the bottom of the November Simply Earth Box - I received 4 essential oils, 3 of which I've never used before. Recipe cards. A linen bag for one of the recipes. Powdered milk. Lavender buds. And finally labels for any recipes I made.

My Bonus Box included beeswax, solid and liquid coconut oil, almond oil, as well as roller and blend bottles for any recipes I made.

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10 Wedding Invitation Ideas to Get People to Read the Whole Invitation

Today's guest post is all about wedding invitations. I can honestly say that was one of my favorite items to pick our for our wedding and still love getting them in the mail. Who doesn't love beautiful snail mail in any way, shape, or form? 

Did you know that around 10 percent of people who RSVP your wedding invitation probably won't even show up?
This can extremely expensive if you have already paid for everything for the guests who didn't attend.
Did you have any tough choices? You could have invited other people who you couldn't squeeze into your guest list.
If you want to ensure that your wedding guests read every detail about your wedding day, check out these wedding invitation ideas for help below.
1. Make Sure Everything's Easy to Read
Cursive fonts are beautiful and elegant. They are also extremely popular for wedding invitations. And yet, they're not always to easy to read. Is that the letter "F" or a "Y" at the end of the word?
You shouldn't give your guests so much work to do. Focus on ensuring that the text is simple and easy to read without any effort.
It's not only about the font. You need to consider how effectively the color of the text stands out against the background. Ensure that the background contrasts with the text so that it instantly grabs the reader's attention when they open up the wedding invite. 
2. Select Your Words Carefully
The words you use in your wedding invitation are extremely important. You don't want to confuse the reader with complicated sentences.
There is also a traditional format for the invite. Start with the name of the happy couple at the top of the invite. Include the relevant information, such as date, time, and venue of the wedding events.
You may also want to include an empty space to handwrite the name of the guests who you invite. There are also classic phrases, such as "request the honor of your presence" to make your guests feel important.
3. Proof Read Your Invites 
If you send out a bunch of wedding invitations with a typo or spelling mistake, it can look really bad for you. Definitely don't get your husband or wife's name wrong.
Nobody wants to spend time reading an invitation with numerous errors. You can ensure that you rule out any mistakes by double-checking everything.
You could even ask someone else to read through your invite to make sure there are no embarrassing errors in it.
4. Don't Add Too Much on the Card
If you want to ensure that your wedding invitation is actually read by the guest, you shouldn't clutter the page with too much information or decoration either.
Of course, there is important and relevant information. But, anything that doesn't need to be said should be removed from the invite.
People often wonder — should I include directions to the venue? Should I add potential accommodation options for guests?
You don't need to include everything on your wedding invite. You can encourage guests to visit your wedding website or give you a call for more info.
5. Send the Invitations Early 
If you send your wedding invitations at the last minute, you cannot expect the guest to RSVP in time for the event.
But, if you send the invitation too early, they may think it's too far in the future to read the info now. Even if they read it, they'll probably forget the details.
You need to send the invitation around eight months before the wedding. This gives them enough time to prepare for the big day.
6. Encourage RSVPs 
If you give your guests something to do, they're more likely to read everything on the invite. A call to action always works!
Tell your guests to RSVP within one month to make sure they read the invite from top to bottom. You want to get the number of guests counted early.
If you give your guests a few months to reply with an RSVP, then you can bet they'll take the extra time. 
This could cause you problems when you need to give the chef details about how many dishes they need to prepare in the kitchen on the day.
7. Make the RSVP Easy and Quick
If you include your own address on the wedding invitation, you can ensure that they reply quickly to your wedding invitation.
Your friends and family will be excited to tell you that they cannot wait to come to your wedding. Give them the chance to RSVP quickly with your address on the envelope.
8. Stick to Online Invitations
People quickly lose a piece of card. You need to ensure that your invitation is read and RSVP'd straight away.
If you produce online wedding invites, you can ensure that your guests are just a click away from giving you the go-ahead.
When they forget the date or the venue, they don't have to call you up to find out from you directly. They'll just be able to search their email for your invitation. 
9. Send Invites for Households
You can expect to invite many households. You probably don't just invite one person in the house, but the whole family.
So, you can keep your wedding invitations simple by only sending one invite per household. Address to the "Jones Family" not "Charlie, Racheal, and Seb."
This makes sure everything is included in a single card. But, if you're sending online invites, you need these to be sent per person. Unless your friends and family have shared emails. 
10. Always Order Extra Invites
If you're sending your guests invites with physical cards, you need to ensure that you always order extra. 
You'll find that you cannot order the same invitations more than once. This can extremely expensive when you run out.
When it doubt, just order 20-30 more invitations. If you realize that you have missed someone off your guest list, no worries.
Wedding Invitation Ideas
Getting your guests to absorb every detail on your wedding invitation is always a struggle for engaged couples.
You need to keep things as simple as possible to ensure that they have no excuse to skip the RSVP or forget where the wedding is held. Follow our wedding invitation ideas to make sure they catch everything.
If you want more wedding and post-wedding life advice, check out our blog for much more!