On the morning of our wedding I was at my Mum’s house; I stayed there the night before our big day as her house is nearer to our venue and Dan wanted to be traditional and spend the night before apart. It was an absolutely BEAUTIFUL day; it was a crisp, fresh day but we had bright sunshine – I don’t know what I thought the weather would be like as I hadn’t really considered it, but I wasn’t expecting perfect weather! My sister drove me to the venue where we met the makeup artists; Hayley from Flame Beauty and her assistant, Hannah. Hayley started on my hair first and once all the curls were pinned up I was free to put the final touches to our venue; for example, getting the cakes out of the boxes and putting them on cake stands, and making sure everything was in the right place and was ready to go.
Up until the last hour I felt the morning went really slowly; I was very relaxed and calm and there wasn’t really anything for me to do so I just chilled out on the sofa. But then things got a little busy when it hit 1pm!
I was supposed to get into my dress at 1pm, have some photos with my Bridesmaids, be ready for my meeting with the registrar at 1:45pm and then go get married at 2pm! However, my Mum was very stressed and emotional and so she didn’t end up getting me into my dress until 1:50pm! Which meant I missed out on a lot of photos with the Bridesmaids which was a shame. I was also 15 minutes late for the ceremony! Ooops!
The ceremony itself was very emotional. I’d been perfectly calm all morning; that was until I linked arms with my Dad ready to walk down the aisle. And then the floods opened and I cried! The ceremony went really fast although it did feel very surreal that is was actually US getting married after a massive 906 days since getting engaged. I couldn’t stop grinning by the end of the ceremony; especially as Dan messed up a few words and that broke the ice and made us feel relaxed – though I’m not sure that anyone else other than the registrar knew why we were laughing!
After the ceremony we had one of the cocktails we’d chosen; I had winter Pimms and Dan had hot chocolate with brandy and we chatted to some of our guests. We then started on the group photos with friends and family outside. My dress and veil got filthy during this time as we walked through lots of mud and grass to get some of the shots in the grounds of our venue and the train of my dress was speckled with colour from the rose petals as the ground was wet after the torrential rain the day before.
After the photos finished, all our guests were seated and our DJ introduced us to the room and we made our way to the top table. Apparently the food was really good; I didn’t really get to eat any as my dress was so tight so all I managed was a small piece of vegetable lasagne! Following on from our main meal we had speeches. My Dad went first and then Dan and then our Best Man. All the speeches were great and got a lot of laughs from our guests. Dan’s speech was particularly heartwarming, especially when he started to talk about his feelings for me. It set the whole room off crying; even Dan broke down half way through which made me cry even more!
After the speeches dessert was served and this finally gave me a chance to get out of my ceremony dress! I cannot tell you the relief I felt when the lacing was undone and I got the dress off!!! It was like I’d changed into PJs!! I also popped my ivory slipper socks on as I didn’t fancy wearing heels all evening and I wanted to be as comfy as I could for the rest of the night!
Shortly after that, our evening guests started arriving and we took time out to greet them as they came through the door and filled them in about our day so far.
At round about 8:30pm we had our first dance. We chose Jason Mraz’s ‘I wont give up’ as our song. Dan had been begging me for weeks to practise it but everytime we attempted to we started laughing and gave up. But on the night it didn’t matter at all; we just did the ‘awkward shuffle’ and it went fine! We got half way through the song before the DJ invited other couples to join us and the dance floor was filled which was really nice.
Following the first dance the evening buffet was served and we also opened up the s’more bar and our photobooth. They went down quite well with our guests but we’ve still got loads of marshmallows and biscuits left over from the s’more bar so we’ll be eating those for months!!
The rest of the night went quite quickly. Things started to wrap up about 11:45pm-12am which worked well; in all honesty I was SO shattered and was glad for an earlier night than I had expected! Once our guests had left we stayed downstairs popping bits into boxes so that there wasn’t as much to do the next morning. I got chatting with some of the staff who said (and I quote) “In all the years I’ve been working here I’ve never seen a wedding with a theme like this!”. I’m not sure whether that was a compliment, but I’ve taken it as a nod to our originality!
The next morning we woke up at 5am as the cleaners came in to pack all our stuff up and they were quite noisy so we made a cup of tea and sat in bed eating wedding cake before getting ready to meet our family for breakfast downstairs.It was really nice to be able to chat to our parents and family about the day before and catch up on all the gossip we missed!!
After breakfast was finished and we’d squeezed all our boxes and bags into our families’ cars, we made our first car journey as Mr & Mrs! Our doggies had to stay in ‘kennels’ (they are not kennels as such – check out the website!) so we left the venue and went to collect Stanley, Milo and Daisy from the Essex Pooch Palace where they’d been spoilt for 24 hours and headed home! As soon as we got in, we got changed into our PJs, made a cup of tea and snuggled up on the sofa with our puppies!