Ever since I saw Amy do this post after her wonderful wedding a few months ago, I knew when the time came for me to start wedding post planning, this one would be high on the ‘to-write’ list!

It goes without saying that every wedding is completely individual, we all have different priorities and choices of interest, but here’s what we chose to spend, and save on for our wedding…

 

WHAT WE SAVED ON:

Transport: As I was staying at the venue the night before, and we live nearby, we didn’t have any transport costs. Dan did look at hiring a nice car for him to drive on the morning of, but it was too expensive to justify for less than an hours use.

Music: Neither me or Dan envisaged having a band at our wedding, it just wasn’t really something we were super interested in, so we had the venue’s DJ (we did have to pay for him though) who ended up being such a lovely man, and I don’t regret it one bit. Plus, we had a great time dancing all night anyway!

Favours/gifts: I know this might sound a bit controversial, but I have quite the strong dislike to favours. I’m sure in some instances they are lovely pieces for guests to take home, but I knew I wasn’t going to make anything by hand (my sister did that and she said she regretted it), and for 60 people it was going to add up for a couple of love-heart chocolates. In our eyes (hopefully) us choosing them to join us on our day was enough! I don’t think anyone noticed them missing.

 

WHAT WE SPENT ON:

Flowers: I LOVE flowers, and I knew from the start that I wanted them to be a main focus in our venue styling. I don’t think we spent a ridiculous amount, and I think they looked amazing so I would still make the same decision. We had some around the garden folly too, which I think made a difference in how nice the outside looked too.

Photography: As I’ve said previously, photography was a big cost for us but once I saw Emily’s portfolio, I knew there was no going back! A few family members offered to help out but I really had my mind set on the whimsical, fairy-tale style Emily specialises in. I think I would of really regretted it if I ended up choosing someone else where I didn’t love their work as much.

Venue: When we first got engaged, we originally wrote our venue off as too expensive, but after looking around it soon became apparent that 1) wedding venue pricing is ridiculous and 2) if it’s important to you, you just have to spend it, unfortunately. We did save a bit on this by getting married on a Sunday, but I think what we saved there was also the extra cost of getting married outside, which was something that was really important to me particular. We did get the food provided though which everyone said was delicious, and we had the whole of the outside venue for people to sit down in the sunshine after the ceremony was over too which worked out great.

 

I hope you enjoyed reading a bit more into our personal wedding decisions and maybe if you are planning you’re own wedding, you found it interesting.

If there’s any more wedding specific blog posts you would like please let me know 🙂

 

 

 

 

It’s a few weeks since I posted our wedding posts, so I asked on Instagram if any of you had questions, and thankfully some of you got in touch (along with my mum!). I thought this would be a great way to talk about the day more informally, so let’s start shall we?

 

What was your favourite moment of the day? This one was asked a number of times by different people!

I’d have to say my favourite moment of the day was probably before I walked down the aisle. I had a moment when I was stood with my Dad, where I just felt overcome with happiness and emotion, it was quite magical and I’m sure I’ll always remember it. Walking down the aisle itself was a favourite moment too, I was so happy to see Dan.

 

Did you keep your veil and fancy shoes on all day, or did you get changed into something comfy?

I actually wore flat shoes on the wedding day, because I’m not a heels person and I wanted to be feel like myself. So I ended up keeping them on all day and night, and I think I did the same with my veil too! I didn’t want to take none of it off!

 

Was there anything you spent money on that in hindsight you wouldn’t do again? 

Ooh this one made me think! I’m not actually sure that there was. The most expensive part of the wedding (apart from the venue) was probably the photography. But I really did choose Emily to do our photos for a reason because I am so in love with her style, and because I knew these pictures would be ones we would cherish forever, I was happy to spend it.

 

What’s your advice on choosing a venue?

I’d say definitely have a tick-list in mind of what you already want. Whether that’s an outside space for the ceremony, or a place that provides its own food. In terms of budget, it is important but I think depending on certain days/seasons it can make it more affordable. Look around and make sure you’ve visited all potential venues before you make a decision!

 

How did you stick to a budget without getting caught up in wedding planning?

This was definitely something we both had to be careful of. We were in a very fortunate position where we did have help from our parents, but we really wanted to pay a large majority of the costs ourselves as it felt more comfortable, it was our wedding afterall. I think we did pretty well in that we didn’t go overboard, and cut down the costs by not including certain traditions, which I’m planning on speaking about in a blog post soon! I would say definitely have an overall figure in mind that you want to stick to, and work from there.

 

Were you nervous?

I actually wasn’t nervous at all on the day! The week before and especially the morning of I felt quite nervous, but nothing too extreme and more excitement really.

 

I hope you enjoyed this wedding post, and as I said earlier I do have another one planned, so hopefully I’ll see you back here for that!

 

From a little girl with a big imagination, to a former nerd in high school who loved her English lessons, writing has always been something I’ve felt connected and drawn to. I used to love the lessons where we could make up our own stories, and I’ve always found it fascinating what our minds can conjure up when we get in the writing flow. To me, there’s nothing quite like it. It’s a meditative practice.

Creative writing isn’t something I have even thought about in years, never mind something to go back to. To be honest with both of us, I thought stories were for high school, and pointless when we reach ‘adulthood’. (Another post for a later date, I’m sure).

However after listening to Sara’s podcast episode on the Hashtag Authentic podcast with Megan Hayes, I felt compelled to order her book, Write Yourself Happy: The Art of Positive Journalling.

I’ve had a journal for years, but over that time it’s become more of a gratitude practice. Which is completely great don’t get me wrong, but it wasn’t a place where I expressed myself in my writing. In the book, Megan talks about different positive emotions we experience, and asks the reader to write their thoughts about them, for example, joy, hope, serenity.

I’ve nearly finished the book and I can’t believe how much I’ve enjoyed tapping into that creative writing flow, and describing each different emotion and what it means to me, personally. I’ve completely fallen back in love with it.

I’m a bit nervous to share the following, but I really wanted to, so here goes! These are a few of the sentences that I wrote.

JOY: Joy is finding spare change, that hint of luck you never knew you needed. The gesture of a loved one, showing you their appreciation, no matter how big or small. Joy is puppy kisses, hot salty liquid on your nose, excited squeals and wagging tails. Joy is where life leaves you speechless, you want to soak up every detail. Joy is where you can feel the magic.

GRATITUDE:  Gratitude is a hot cup of tea on a cold winter day. Gratitude is something you always forget you have, it’s finding out that maybe that insignificant thing didn’t matter all along anyway. Gratitude is mother nature welcoming us with open arms, kindred souls uniting together, neither one realizing just how much the other was needed.

HOPE: Hope is the song lyric that resonates with you. Hope is powerfully brave, it is the knowing that it may not be easy, but still showing up anyway. It is the courage to keep calm, and carry on.

I definitely want to learn more about creative writing, so hopefully it’s something I can continue to share on here with you all.

 

Will you be having a go at positive journaling/creative writing?

 

It’s time for another one of my favourite posts to write! Here’s what’s made me happy lately: edition 4…

 

  1. Porridge! Maybe it’s the cosy weather we’ve been having, but I’m a sucker for porridge with banana and of course, all the drizzles of honey! It feels oh so comforting, and it fills me up too which is always a winner in my book.
  2. Consuming content. I am loving the online blogging world at the moment, and the fact that there is such a plethora of content for me to gobble up. I’m loving podcasts as much as ever, and I’m signed up to some great newsletters that I am loving reading on a quiet evening. It definitely has me contemplating on whether I would like to share my own newsletter, but it doesn’t seem like the right time right now. Let me know if you’d like to see a post on exactly what and who’s blogs I’m obsessed with at the moment and I can share them with you!
  3. Getting my hair done. I’m not a frequent visitor to the hairdressers, because lets be honest, who likes to sit and just stare at themselves for hours? But I loooove the finished product, and you feel so fancy and polished after, which isn’t a usual feeling for me!
  4. Instagram engagement! Hopefully I’m not jinxing myself here, but I’m really happy with the Instagram engagement I’m getting lately. I feel like I have such a wonderful community on there and I love chatting away and seeing everyone’s inspiring pictures.
  5. Creative writing. I won’t bang on about this too much as I have a full post coming up all about it, but after buying Write Yourself Happy, I’m so into the world of positive journaling and expanding my creative writing. It feels so good and I always feel uplifted and rejuvenated after.
  6. New books! I’m definitely on a book buying hype lately but I just can’t stop myself! I’ve got Crazy Rich Asians on my next to be read list, but I’ve also got my eye on a few others too. I love getting stuck into a new book, the bigger the better I say.
  7. Work. My day job isn’t something I talk about a lot on here, but incase you didn’t know, I’m an accountant/administrator for a family business where I work 4 days a week, usually in the mornings and early afternoon. I’m at a place where I feel my confidence is constantly building, and I’m not as intimidated to try my hand at new areas like I once was. Plus, we have 2 dogs in the office too which is always a bonus!
  8. A new winter coat. My mum treated me to a new winter coat the other day, which I’m very happy with! I chose a cream/beige parka from H&M and it came to around £35, very similar to one I saw in Next which was triple the price. I’m excited to wear it when the weather gets cooler.
  9. Girls trip! When I’m writing this, me, my mum and sister, are all headed to Sheffield this weekend for a bit of shopping/spa trip. I’m very much looking forward to it!
  10. All the good TV shows. A bit of a silly one, but I’m loving all the good stuff we’re watching on TV recently! We recently watched Stacey Dooley’s BBC documentary on fast fashion which I would highly recommend, but then I’ve also been loving Strictly, Bake Off, Made in Chelsea etc. I love having time off from scrolling on my phone and getting glued to a tv show. Any recommendations on what else I should be watching?

 

What’s made you happy lately? I’d love to know, so feel free to share in the comments below!

 

In my opinion, everybody should have their own well-being toolkit. Each tool can provide a different thing in supporting you. They are things that you can reach for when you feel out of balance, or even just a little down in the dumps. I reach for mine when I feel like I’m flagging or need a bit of restoration, kind of like a manual restart that you’d do to your computer.

What’s in my toolkit?

Yoga and meditation practice. This is something I’ve been working on for years, with its ups and downs. It definitely isn’t something you can get straight away, but with patience and regular practice it can become such a great, calm force in your life. Even just a 10 minute meditation can make me instantly feel more grounded. Yoga makes me feel more connected to myself than I ever have, and with that it encourages me to be a little kinder to myself too.

Nature. Going outside and getting fresh air has always been something that’s worked wonders for me. I remember as a teenager going through a bad break-up and the only thing I looked forward to was my daily walks with my family. Nature reminds me of something greater than ourselves, and that we all are on the same journey in the end anyway.

A support system. I feel very lucky to have a great support system, and people who can help guide me, and give me advice when I need it. Plus a great puppy who is always up for cuddles and kisses!

Journalling. Writing down things I’m grateful for every evening has become part of my daily routine, and it honestly does make such a difference. Especially when I make an effort to look for the super simple stuff, like a phonecall to my dad or making myself a cup of tea.

Creative play: Life without this wouldn’t be the same for me. I need time to draw, colour, paint, photograph to be happy.

 

How to work out what you should put in yours:

  • Things that make you feel happy.
  • What calms you down and makes you feel chilled?
  • What’s your favourite thing to do in your spare time?
  • Are these things that involve other people, or can you do them alone?

 

 

Whats in your well-being toolkit?