I know this is a controversial topic for many, but it was on my mind so I thought I would share some useful tips that have worked well for me while being in the thick of wedding planning of what I chose to be of the utmost importance in my spending.

I have tried to stay calm, relaxed, and realistic about my ideas and budget the entire time throughout my own planning process. Of course that's funny because of course I have been not relaxed and unrealistic at times! Let me just say I am a planner by nature and I already did have some things in mind right away after getting engaged from working in the industry that helped me piece together my vision for my big day. I also have no clue how anyone plans a full blown wedding in less then 6 months, that absolutely blows my mind!

I have always wanted a garden themed springtime wedding and honestly my absolute favorite things about my wedding is our venue. I'm absolutely obsessed with everything about the fact that it is everything I could imagine for an intimate garden wedding, literally right around the corner from our home, very affordable, and a hidden gem in Orange County with the absolute sweetest owners. If you are interested in a backyard wedding, check out The Wilcox Manor, the photos do not do this place justice!

Three things I could absolutely not have sacrificed: GOOD FOOD, GOOD AMBIANCE, GOOD MUSIC. Done and Done. In my opinion if you don't get to really have a say in your venue, food and DJ, your guests might not feel like your day was a memorable occasion for them and personally for me these were the most important. The last two things I cared about were of course my hair and makeup team and my all star wedding photographer knowing I wanted to feel and look my best in my photos. I know for everyone, they may have a specific thing they may by particular stoked for and I love that! With weddings being probably the most personal and non traditional they ever have been, I love seeing people make their day their own.

Something I realize when you are getting married is that everyone will have an opinion about your venue, your dress of course and the way you go about the logistics in planning. My greatest piece of advice, if you are paying for your wedding, then YOU and only you and your groom to be should be the ones making the final decisions on everything. This has been difficult at times remembering we have to please our guests and family with these decisions but also making it very personal to be about what we want at the end of the day.

The things everyone tells you will happen to you as a bride are actually mostly true. The budget definitely is one of the hardest things to stick to. Like I stated, being realistic and realizing I don't need to have it all for it to be amazing and beautiful is one of the best lessons in keeping me grounded throughout this process. I've allowed myself to feel all the feels when they come unapologetic-ally, because it is a big moment that we hopefully only live once. In the beginning, I was so overwhelmed being engaged I didn't even know how to feel. Coming down to the last three months is the most hectic but the most rewarding knowing all the hard work is coming together and is going to pay off and getting serious about thinking about what marriage will look like for me in my life and anticipating any exciting and difficult changes.

My hope for myself and all my other fellow 2020 beauties getting married this year, is we really pause to take in the day, be in the moment and forget about the silly little details, the family drama, the expectations from guests and just have one heck of a good time on our one joyous day to celebrate our love! Overall, I'm treating my day with lots of tender care, knowing I'm not the only person on the planet getting married, life is going on in the meantime and my wedding day is ultimately about a lifetime full of loving and sharing your life with your favorite person! CHEERS!