Back in October I realized that I was exactly one year away from the wedding. ONE YEAR AWAY and I freaked.
See what happened was I did what a lot of brides do: I started moving away from my dream wedding and to a "WEDDING". When I first pictured my wedding it had a very strong DIY element. I want to make the invitations, cake, favors, etc... I want folks to show up in jeans. I want to wear my $3 thrifted dress with the neon turquoise Docs. It would be a short ceremony with no long reception and it would be cheap. No bouquet toss, or garter, or toasts, or dancing.
Okay -- hold that image in your head..... got it?
Seemingly doable ... until you realize that nearly 150 people will be at the wedding.
My introvert's dream of a small wedding looked impossible. I want to be able to hang-out with the people I love. So what happened and how did my dream start turn into a TLC special?
My problem is that Sam and I love a lot of people -- despite putting on a curmudgeon act. When you add in both of our families (and extended families), all our coffeeshop loafing friends, college friends, high school friends, coworkers, etc.... the numbers move up. I was paranoid about leaving someone out. Oh, and then toss in everyone's significant other. And kids, I want a kid friendly wedding so there will be tons of kids.
Of course more guests mean a bigger venue, and a need to do all the rituals, and then the thought of crafting and baking for 150+ people threw me in a tizzy. Although invitations hadn't gone out people were expecting to be invited. Every conversation turned to "how are the wedding plans?"
In early November I flipped out and canceled everything. I told Sam that we would take an afternoon in January, pick Hope up from school early, and head to the courthouse. I didn't want ANYONE there -- not even my parents. I lamented the fact that I didn't plan better and get knocked up so we could use the excuse of a good ole country shotgun wedding. Sam talked me off the ledge and I did what any freaked out bride would do: I called my mom.
Two weeks later, I had my dream wedding planned. We're getting married January 16th at my Grandmother's house with less than 30 people attending. Close family and 4 or 5 mutual friends will be attending. I handmade invitations using Amy Butler paper and a John Donne poem. I'm practicing baking cupcakes. There will be no attendants, tossing of bouquets, or aisle walking. We'll say our vows, eat a cupcake, and hit the road to eat Thai food and head off to Athens for a weekend honeymoon. I'm truly excited and relaxed.
The one hitch in my calm is that I didn't know how to tell all the folks expecting invites to a huge wedding. It felt deceptive to wait and then surprise everyone with a wedding announcement. Not only that, but my coworkers knew the wedding plans changed -- I had to take some vacation time -- and then other folks on campus found out and I would DIE if one of my friends found out from someone other than me. The last thing I want is for someone to feel unloved or left out.
So there we go: in less than a month I will be Mrs. Roper. No stress, no freaking out, and all handmade.