Is or Was your Wedding a Dream Come True?

imagesCA8M10362 Is or Was your Wedding a Dream Come True?The last of the guests walk out the door, the venue staff packs up your items, and your family members are loading up the car with gifts.  You and your husband make your way out after a magical evening, stop and look back, and realize the night has come to an end.  You wake up the next morning and start your new life together.

Following the wedding, did you ever regret anything you did or did not do?  Was your dress not exactly what you planned?  Was the food and beverage not ample for all the guests?  Did everyone enjoy the venue selection?  Did the day run smoothly?

It is very normal for a bride to look back on the big day and wonder – what if?  It is perfectly okay to ask yourself a few questions, but you should not second guess any of your decisions.  Remember that hopefully, you were in complete control of the outcome, and should be very pleased with how everything worked out.  And maybe the flowers that had to be flown in from Europe just couldn’t fit your budget, but the ones you choose were probably perfect for you.  It’s really not a big deal if one of the napkins was not folded properly, but these are the little things that only the bride will notice.  Do not spend time and stress worrying about small details like that.

I’ve seen it countless times – everyone gets caught up with the word “wedding” and immediately think it has to be lavish and extravagant.  The truth is, it’s all about the people in that room and the love you will share with them.  Things like reality television, social networking, royal weddings, and the “hot trends” of the year have warped the minds of many brides into thinking they absolutely need a Cinderella experience on their big day, and it causes them grief if they cannot have it.  But it must be remembered that this can be achieved in ways other than with decorations, cakes, and a ball gown.

Do not look back on the things you “should have” done.  It really is not worth it.  Twenty years from now, when you look back at your wedding video and photos you should not see regret, but love.  And you may even have a good laugh at a few things, as trends are constantly changing.  Even my own colour selection from my wedding twenty years ago shocks me today…pink and royal blue! I would never have chosen those colours today, but I certainly don’t regret a single thing.

More important than the tablecloths or the bridesmaids’ gowns will be the love shared between the bride, groom, family and friends.  If you are feeling any negativity after the wedding, try to clear those thoughts immediately and think only of love.  You did the very best you could, and I’m sure it turned out to be absolutely amazing.

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Mother of Groom Wants to Help with Your Wedding Planning

ijsyimage1 Mother of Groom Wants to Help with Your Wedding PlanningMother of the Groom wants to help……what do you do when your future mother-in-law wants to help plan your wedding?

Weddings are a very stressful time for all involved and as difficult it can be between a bride and her own mother, there can be some tension when your future mother-in-law wants to participate.

Weddings are a joyous occasion and the mother of the bride will take part in many aspects of the wedding planning. You always hear “I’m the mother of the bride” as if it gives her the okay to take charge and yes she does have some say! If a disagreement should arise it is very easy for the bride to take her mom aside and have a heart to heart conversation.

When dealing with your future husbands mom you may have to tread a little lighter.   The wedding for her son is a very big deal for her as well and she wants to be part of his special day.  She will want to help out with whatever she can.  Do you make you feel wanted and comfortable?  Of course you do as you are now part of her family.  You may not want to give her too much to keep control on things but do pass on some smaller tasks such as making or boxing favours, helping with the invitations or perhaps baking some pastries for the reception.  She will be happy to help.

Your fiance will be also be happy that you included his mom and it will set a good tone for your future daughter-in-law / mother in law relationship.  Sure you may not agree with everything she does or says but if you have open communication you will be able to share your feelings.


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Can You Invite Guests to the Shower & Not the Wedding?

IJustSaidYes E Book Cover Can You Invite Guests to the Shower & Not the Wedding?This is one question we get all the time.  Is it okay to invite guests to the shower and not the wedding?  Actually, it is not right to invite a guest to one but not the other.

When you receive a shower invitation most will assume they will be invited to the wedding as well.  How is it proper to ask for a gift but then not send them a wedding invitation?  Once your guest realizes that they were not expected to be at the wedding they will feel as if you just wanted a present and not their presence at the wedding!

It is very important when creating your shower list that all those guests will be invited to the wedding as well.  As I mentioned in a previous blog post, people understand that weddings are smaller today and that couples are choosing to cut some expenses by inviting immediate families and closest friends.  They will not be upset with you nor should you feel guilty for not be able to invite them.  Giving a gift comes from the heart.  If someone  knows they will not be invited to the shower or wedding may decide to buy you a little something anyways.  You will see this from your place of employment where the girls get together and purchase a gift.

Whether your wedding is big or small, choose your guest list wisely.  There should be no so called “B” list.  All that are invited should be because they hold a special place in your lives and you want to spend it with them.





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IJSY Guest Blog: Why Photographers Take So Darn Long and Tips to Keep your Guests from Waiting

alicia 150x150 IJSY Guest Blog:  Why Photographers Take So Darn Long and Tips to Keep your Guests from WaitingThis past Saturdays wedding I was not-so-intentionally reminded of how planning a wedding schedule is so important. Not only for you and your photographer, but for your guests.

I had to make a pit stop at the Inn at where we had just wrapped up the days after ceremony photos. The venue was very strict on their reception start and would not allow guests to go inside until a particular time. While in my stall, a few ladies had walked in mid-conversation about how annoyingly long pictures take after the ceremony. Giggling to myself (as we had been done for over a half hour) it made me very aware about how planning out your wedding day time line can be such a tricky thing. It’s a good thing I have a thick skin because I’m usually the one blamed for things running a little long.

To a photographers defence there are reasons why we do “take so long”. If anyone has looked into a wedding photographer recently you have probably noticed that most of our styles have gone way above and beyond the standard statue poses and high flash lighting. Every day wedding photography is turning into a mater piece work-of-art, under very short time constraints.

Things to consider when you’re planning your wedding day:

- An ever more popular solution is a cocktail hour at the reception venue – consider doing your photographs nearby as you won’t keep your guests waiting as long. Music also goes a long way in entertaining. Maybe you could consider having something live like a string quartet or cover band if your budget allows.

- Ask only family members having their picture taken to accompany the wedding party and the photographer. This way you’re less distracted with people trying to pull you aside or grab a ‘quick photo’. 100 ‘quick photos’ take a lot of time, may (probably) annoy your photographer, and keep you from getting back to your own big party. It’s quite often I will have my couple stand together outside the ceremony JUST for the guests to get in a pic (to post to Facebook) and show off the new couple immediately. However, sometimes the weather or the time line doesn’t always allow for this.

- If you plan on taking considerable amounts of time for your photography, consider mentioning with your invitations nearby places to grab an appetizer and a drink or maybe a mini-golf course or something fun to do in the meantime. If you’re doing an outside or tent reception come up with some fun games, could be as simple as horse shoes, for your guests to start up on their own. Etsy has TONS of fun hand-made ideas that are sure to impress and for those on a budget – the dollar store is a wonderful place to find cost effective entertainment.

- Do first-look photos (photos together before the ceremony) to cut down the after ceremony wait. Did you know that the big reveal down the isle, although has been adopted as a tradition, originated from arranged marriages so that the couple doesn’t have a chance to change their minds? Doing your photos before the ceremony could put you directly into your party after the ceremony – how much fun would that be?! For everyone!

Things to consider as a guest of a wedding:

- Save your ‘quick pics’ for the reception. Chances are you’ll get a great shot in your Thank You card that the photographer has taken. Maybe the couple will have a photo booth at their wedding where you can get a professional shot of yourselves with the couple.

- Be proactive. Take a look at the time that the bride and groom have set aside until the reception and do a bit of homework. Is there an art gallery or a market in the area to go and check out? Maybe there is a nice patio to sit out on (with a beverage) to take the day’s events in and chat with other guests.

Because of so many restrictions with vendors it’s hard to plan a day that flows perfectly. Try to contact your venue or your photographer prior to your big day to come up with some ideas to accommodate your guests. Best thing to do is remember that the day of the wedding the only thing you can do is sit back, relax and enjoy the day as it happens. It’ll go by so fast.

Regardless your guests are there to enjoy and celebrate your BIG DAY with the two of you. If the photo portion after the ceremony goes a little long and someone needs to point a finger, blame me, I’m used to it.

Article written by:  Alicia Riley

Alicia Riley Photography –

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