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Things To Think About When Planning An Elopement


After this morning’s wedding graduate post, Lindsey is back talking about the things you should think through if you’re planning an elopement (and frankly, the questions you should ask if you’re trying to figure out if an elopement is right for you). I’m beyond delighted about this post, because we get asked rather constantly at APW, “Should I elope? Will my family be mad?” and I’m never sure if those are quite the right questions. So here is Lindsey, telling you how it is.

Things To Think About When Planning An Elopement | A Practical Wedding

Now, things to think about before  your elopement and/or shotgun wedding.

If a tree falls and no one is there, does it make a sound? When you elope, you don’t have an audience.  This means there was no one there but L- and me to say, in a few months, “Remember at the wedding when….?”  Since our witnesses were strangers, the only people we could talk about our wedding with was the other person.  Because of this it was really important for me to have our wedding documented by a photographer.  I wanted to be able to tell the story to our friends, family and future child.  I wanted to have it recorded.  Our parents were also really happy to see the pictures and hear us tell the story; it helped them feel like they were there.

During our honeymoon we sat down and wrote out, independently, our thoughts and memories from our wedding.  The little things that could easily be lost in the busy-ness of life.  We sealed them up and will read them sometime, maybe in 10 years.   If you plan to elope, make sure you think about how your day will be remembered.

Be prepared for strong reactions from others. The thought of upsetting close friends and family is probably what holds most people back from eloping.  No matter how much you try to anticipate how people will react, there is no preparing for what will actually happen.  Some people may surprise you with their reactions, for others it may be better or worse than expected.  When my dad chose to leave just after our announcement, I had to realise that it was his decision, much like eloping was my decision.  Neither of us agreed with the actions of the other person, but they were, for better or worse our decisions.

Be prepared to explain why you decided what you did, but don’t feel the need to justify. Acknowledge the feelings of the hurt party and realise it may take them some time to share your joy.  While I had 8 years to slowly change my wedding plans, my dad had very little warning.  Now, almost a year after the wedding my dad is very accepting of our marriage, happily calls L- my husband and seems to bear no grudge.

Be prepared for unexpected feelings from yourself. In the weeks after our wedding, I was worried we had done the wrong thing.  I felt guilty for making my dad feel so sad.  These immediate feelings passed, especially when I realised we had done the right thing for us, even if it left some people unhappy.  Even when I was certain I had no regrets, at a wedding a few months later there were moments where I felt a bit sad.  I felt sad that I wouldn’t walk up an aisle with everyone I loved surrounding me, or that I wouldn’t get to make a speech.  I recognised that sadness as simply being sad over a choice not taken.  When it would hit me, I would remember the choices we made, and why we made them and the feeling of sadness would pass.  We are married, that is what’s important.

To post-party or not? Having a post-elopement party seems to be fairly common (at least between the two people I know who have eloped).  Seven months after our elopement and six months after our daughter was born we threw (with the help of both sets of parents) a “marriage and baby party” for about 130 people in my parents backyard.  There were signature cocktails, delicious foods, bunting, speeches, and oh yes, stress.  In many ways I imagined it to be similar to planning a traditional wedding, except happily we only had to focus on the party part.  Having the “marriage and baby party” allowed me to enjoy some of the trappings I missed from a regular wedding.  I got to give a speech and see (almost) everyone I loved smiling at me, I even got to make favours.  I had the best of three worlds.  A private ceremony, an intimate dinner and a big party.  But truthfully, when I look back and think about our wedding, I think about the private city hall ceremony.

(And if you’re eloping shotgun-style, also consider the following:) Babies = highly unpredictable. Originally, our post-party was planned for when Eleanor was three months old. Just before her birth I panicked because I was worried we would be so sleep deprived and out of it that it would be a disaster.  So we pushed it back until she was six months old, thinking we would have it all figured out by then.  Ha.  In retrospect, having the party when she was three months would have been perfect because at the start she was an amazing sleeper and we were rested and feeling on top of the world.  When party time did arrive, we had been dealing with a baby who, for the past three months had not slept for more than two hours at a time and were pretty much at our lowest parenting point.  If you do plan on having a wedding/party immediately (and by immediately I mean within twelve months of birth) post baby, don’t assume anything.  Do it whenever works for you. Your baby will either cooperate or not.

And in conclusion: One of my favourite people, 90 year old Bea said it best; “my first wedding was arranged in four days and we were very happy until he was taken from me. My second wedding only had five people and that was extremely happy also. So you see you do not need all the fuss to be happy.”

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  • http://whyareweallsostupid.com sarahdipity

    This is great advice! We were considering eloping and I was worried about upsetting my mother. I wish someone had pointed out that my wedding decisions weren’t guaranteed to not upset her even if we didn’t elope. With most adult decisions you run the risk of making a choice someone you love might not like; weddings are no different.

    • Kristen

      Even if you did have a wedding, your mother could be upset about how you did or did not do something. You can never make everyone happy, so it’s best just to make yourself happy.

    • Lori Woods

      Our 19 year old daughter eloped with her now husband who is also 19 and a marine . They did ask us the night before for our blessing. We told them we could not give that to them , they are too young and we want them to start out on the right foot . Our daughter said they were old enough , wanted to see how we felt though. We told them we would love them what ever they do. Other parents were thrilled! Really did not think they would. We were devastated!! So many things go through your mind, my husband cried saying ,” what about walking her down the isle?” My daughter and her husband say this is on paper only, are not living together and still want a wedding. Which I am actually glad about . But from a parent let me just say again , ” we were devastated , I wanted to hurt myself , lost 20 lbs, nightmare. It has been 2 months now . Much better, and I pretend all is well . Most of my sadness has been fear that they made a massive mistake. Other than that , for other parents facing this , this is what they will be upset about if they are not at the elopement is the Father not getting to walk their daughter down the isle, the mothers pre wedding private talk and just last min stuff , maybe passing on an heirloom. Just wanted all that known , thank you :) Now my prayers are my daughter never has a day of regret!!

      • luminosity

        This comment Lori, is exactly why I am eloping. I’m almost ten years older than your daughter- but I am disheartened at your words. All the focus on conventions, traditions- you place the expectation on your daughter for her to bring you happiness. This “prayer of no regret” sounds like something my mother would say, and it does not sound kind. It sounds ominous and condemning. You should pray for their relationship, with God, and with each other. You are responsible for your decisions, she is responsible for hers. A marriage is between two people, and spectators have no bearing on the strength, quality, or endurance of the vow taken or the bond formed. I hope someday you are able to realize peace, the same thing I wish for my own mother.

        • Alden

          Well said! Reading your comment gave me goosebumps.

  • Eat Broccoli

    “you do not need all the fuss to be happy”
    *le sigh* if only everyone else understood that.

    • http://realizingself.wordpress.com Krista

      Exactly! However, then all the people that run the bridal shows would be out of work. Those things are terrifying.

      • Lauren B

        Can I just say that I am “pre-engaged” and was working a booth at a huge bridal show because I am a make-up artist (as well as an Esthetician and Massage Therapist) I immediately came home and told my man that I’m not ready to be engaged because wedding planning stresses me out.I want no part of it.

        Oh and HEEYYY! I’m in St. Louis, very fairly priced, and I can give shoulder rubs on game day!

    • http://www.missgiggles.com/blog Giggles

      And not just wedding fuss, but just fuss in general. I need to start cutting fuss. Sometimes the fuss is just stress and not happy.

    • Shotgun Shirley

      90 year old Bea is awesome.

  • http://nickandnoragettingmarried.wordpress.com/ Annie

    Excellent advice. My college roommate and very close friend eloped, which was definitely the right decision for her. (If she’d had a wedding, her mother would have made it a huge event, which is what my friend always said she’d never wanted.) It’s caused trouble between my friend and her sister, but whenever my friend talks about getting married, she sounds like it was a very happy and intimate experience. Other people I know who were forced into a big wedding say it wasn’t really their day, which is so sad.

  • Hypothetical Sarah

    Another fantastic post. Thank you! Two quotes really struck me:

    “During our honeymoon we sat down and wrote out, independently, our thoughts and memories from our wedding. The little things that could easily be lost in the busy-ness of life. We sealed them up and will read them sometime, maybe in 10 years. If you plan to elope, make sure you think about how your day will be remembered.”

    and

    “I had the best of three worlds. A private ceremony, an intimate dinner and a big party. But truthfully, when I look back and think about our wedding, I think about the private city hall ceremony.”

    Right now, the boy and I are in the hazy middle ground between our elopement (more by necessity than by choice, though it was a choice… only our immediate families know) and our wedding (which isn’t until next May). I’m so caught up in the in between, in not telling people, in trying to plan the wedding, that I’ve forgotten to think about the after. That someday I’ll want to remember all those little details of our elopement (thankfully we took pictures too), that someday I too might look back at our private ceremony as our wedding.

    Thanks for the perspective from after.

    • http://www.missgiggles.com/blog Giggles

      Within two months we’d both sat down independent of the other and written out how our wedding was. It was so interesting to see it from his point of view and what stood out to him. And the act of writing it all down (it was MANY pages for both of us) made it stick in our memories better.

    • http://linseykitchens.wordpress.com Linsey

      OMG!! Spell check. Me so happy!

      Yes, I love this idea, too, about writing down the day. All those little details get lost or hyperbolized when the memory goes. How wonderful to have it scrawled out, honeymoon fresh.

      I love Bea. Can she be my friend too?

      • http://linseykitchens.wordpress.com Linsey

        AND an edit button? Died and gone to heaven… Nice work, Team P!

  • http://www.patrickpike.com Patrick Pike

    I love the idea of writing down your memories from your wedding and sharing them ten years down the road. I need to pass that on to my clients :)

    • meg

      Please do!! I did this before we got our pictures back, and I think everyone should. I love our pictures, but because they are so amazing, I think that my memories of the day would slowly become supplanted by the pictures if I hadn’t done this. I think it’s really important to record your own point of view of the day, before you get someone else’s view.

  • http://webecomeus.wordpress.com Caitlin

    Even if you’re not/you didn’t elope… there’s a whole lot of wisdom in this post:

    “I recognised that sadness as simply being sad over a choice not taken. When it would hit me, I would remember the choices we made, and why we made them…” Yes, yes, yes. Exactly.

    Also, a wedding time capsule?!?!? Best idea ever.

  • http://bondingcarbonunits.wordpress.com/ the Sarah formerly known as Sarah K.

    This is wonderful!! So much wisdom here. I have a friend who is thinking of having a courthouse/shotgun/elopement/wedding, and I’m absolutely passing this along to her.

    • Eloping cindy

      My fiance and I are planning on eloping in October (we are both reserved and the thought of having 200plus people staring at us brings unnecessary anxiety) and i am mortified at what my parents will say. I know my mum dreams of mine and my sister’s weddings but we are both taking different paths. When I told my siblings of my decision to marry at city hall, they seemed ok with it but im constantly finding myself justifying our decision. Reading this article gives me some comfort in knowing that these concerns are normal. At the end of the day, we are looking forward to the marriage and not just the wedding.

  • http://bride-sans-tulle.blogspot.com Sharon

    This is such good advice for brides, eloping or not. U especially like what you say about your dad being allowed his feelings and decisions. That is such a mature and wise perspective!

  • http://ourlovebinds.us Jessica

    I got married at San Francisco City Hall and my partner and I brought 6 family members. I wore a red dress because it was New Year’s Eve and wanted to look festive.We then ate at our favorite vegan Mexican place. It was one of the best and most simple days of my life.

    I would highly recommend a small wedding/elopement to everyone because it brings to focus what really matters and allows you to spend more thought and energy on the impending new stage in your relationship.

    • erin

      have you talked to meg about writing a wedding grad post? that sounds like a wedding i’d love to hear more about.

      • http://ourlovebinds.us Jessica

        That makes me feel all warm and fuzzy to think that people I don’t know may care to hear about my wedding.

        I didn’t consider writing a wedding graduate post because my wedding was super simple and REALLY frugal. All the posts here seem to have amazing professional photography with perfectly captured moments.

        I guess I’ll give it a go anyways. =)

  • http://jolynn.wordpress.com Jo

    This is exactly what was needed!

  • Carreg

    You know, with the tree that falls with no one to hear it, I don’t disagree about photos, and writing it down and everything but… I think maybe how much one needs to do that depends on personality.

    I mean, even if no one hears the tree fall, next time someone passes, they’ll see that the tree has fallen. And the tree knows it’s falling, and knows it’s horizontal afterwards. Well it doesn’t, because trees aren’t sentient, but brides and grooms are… So does it matter if no one hears it?

    Don’t listen too much to me, since I haven’t eloped and I’m not going to, but I think maybe if I did, I’d take the view that we can tell that we got married, because lo and behold, we’re married. And I certainly take a lacksadaisical attitude to photos. I’m more keen on writing an account afterwards; I’ll do that.

    It probably depends on how you draw a Q on your forehead, and that sort of thing.

  • Kate

    My parents “eloped” because they were pregnant, poor, and their parents didn’t approve. They went across state lines because the neighboring state didn’t require a blood test and was a cheaper marriage license, then they “honeymooned” in the mountains for the weekend before coming back to work on Monday.

    Now I’m in a weird place in the world of romance and commitment and I can’t possibly imagine planning a big wedding or a long engagement or anything like that. I totally see myself eloping… albeit with parents in tow (I like them and we’ll probably need a DD).

    • Shotgun Shirley

      I took my parents along on my (pre-wedding) city hall “elopement” and my only regret is that we didn’t have time for In’n’Out after. He had class and I had work, oh well. I brought cookies to work to celebrate.

  • http://bullinachinashopmama.blogspot.com/ Tina

    This is a great post! I eloped 6 months into planning a very large wedding and I am so happy I did. I realize it’s not for everyone, but it was the best thing for us. This is all really great advice!
    Best,
    Tina

  • april

    “…you do not need all the fuss to be happy.” ~Bea.

    And with that, 90-year old Bea has just become one of MY favorite people, too!

  • Raqui

    Congrats on making it all happen!

    We are having around a 6-month engagment and then doing a city hall elopement type thing. I would also like to have a party with both of our families down the road.

    The marriage part feels to me so deeply private. I feel that if I did that part of it in front of too many people I would either get into semi-hostess mode or semi-performance mode and might miss all the quiet things really going on in my heart.

    • http://www.twitter.com/kahlia kahlia

      (I had a 150-guest wedding, ceremony+reception on the same day.)
      Honestly, I totally did the “hostess/semi-performance mode” thing, but did not miss any of the true emotions throughout the ceremony or the busy party. They were just mixed in, fit in between the talking to people and having our picture taken (again!).
      Of course, the “hostess/semi-performance mode” occurred after the ceremony, during the party. During the ceremony I actually didn’t notice anyone but my partner & the officiant, except when he said “We’d like to thank you all for being here” and we turned around and grinned at the hill full of people watching.

  • http://koruwedding.blogspot.com Koru Kate

    I love the sentiment in this post to stay true to yourself. When you elope, people may not be happy. When you have a wedding, people may not be happy (lesson learned for me). As long as you & your partner are happy, that is the heart of the matter.

    And I adore the thought of writing down your thoughts & memories of the wedding day. I got so busy in the last days before the wedding & afterwards returning to reality that I haven’t had the time to sit & reflect. I must do this ASAP!

  • http://www.oregoncoastweddingofficiants.com Maureen Thomson

    A tip–make sure you bring some cash along with you–especially small bills. You never know what you’ll find spur-of-the-moment on your way to your elopement ceremony. A street vendor selling flowers (or hot dogs!), a street performer who will sing you a love ballad if you ask. When my hubby and I eloped, we end up taking a last minute horse and carriage ride after we tied the knot (we didn’t have enough cash on us, so the horse and carriage stopped at the ATM–it was hysterical!).

    Moral of the story–bring enough cash. You might want to tip your spur-of-the-moment witness too!

  • Jenny C.

    This weekend, after being engaged almost two years and attempting to plan a wedding in three different locations, we put a deposit down – on an elopement package in British Columbia. Needless to say, this post is divine timing in my world.

    We are choosing to elope because it’s what we want to do, plain and simple. We can afford a wedding, we could (probably) deal with the stress, and we would still be happy and married at the end of all that. But, in our heart of hearts, along with the speedbumps and the common sense, led us to wanting a private, intimate weekend, where we could share our vows to one another.

    Our planned elopement, as I’ve coined it, has our parents blessings. Our friends knew it was coming and support it. The hardest thing was telling my best friend, who is a Peace Corps volunteer in Moldova (yeah, I had to google it too) that I wasn’t having any bridesmaids, because I wasn’t having a one-day wedding (and thus no bridal party). Instead, our wedding will consist of a private ceremony of my beau and I, and two parties in our respective hometowns. I hope those will be full of sentiment, cheers, dancing, and stale beer.

    (Thanks for the tips on writing the memories, and the cash. Will do, ladies, will do.)

    • Emily

      Go Jenny!
      I’m excited for you :-)

    • M

      Hi Jenny
      My fiance and I have booked our elopement in Greece. We are considering whether to take parents or not. I am an only child and my Dad especially would love to be there on our day. However, my partner’s mum would have to save very hard to go and would bring along his sister.

      We had decided to elope as it is so romantic and we can do a photo tour which will make the day even more special. Now I am in two minds… it would be nice to have my mum there to see me get married and my dad to walk me down the isle. Although doesn’t this take the romance out of it? Especially since the mother-in-law to be hasn’t been very nice in the past to any of the daughter-in-laws to be. What do you think? It’s a hard decision…

      • Jenny

        Hi M – How exciting – Greece will be beautiful!!!
        I would say do what is in your heart. Your wedding is not an imposition, so if she has to save a lot to attend, she can make it work. This was hard for me to understand, but people really love being there (whether a friend everyday, or a parent at a wedding). Invite who you truly want there, and/or how you want the day to go. Just think, that either way, they will still love you and support your marriage.

        It IS a hard decision. By eloping, I wasn’t deciding to *not* have my loved ones there, but deciding to have a private ceremony… I think it makes it easier when we do not frame it as a ‘we decided to NOT’ and instead ‘we decided to’.

        It will be great, whatever you decide. Best of luck!

  • Lauren

    I’m Lindsay’s SIL. I’m so proud of her posts here! My own evolution of wedding desires sort of crossed hers going in opposite directions – I never expected to get married and thought brides were inherently twisted, and ended up wanting a wedding.
    We got married for our families, which suits us, 8 months before L&L, also shotgun after common-law (our poor parents!) and had 50 guests and a 3-week engagement whereas they had 0 guests and a 6-week engagement. I liked parts of my wedding a lot (the venue and afterparty) and parts not at all (how I looked, the bossy photographer, and that almost none of my husband’s family could make it) but you know what? I enjoy the marriage and that was always the point.
    Here’s the moral: know your reasons and priorities – whatever they are – then double your planning time and minimise your input static and you’ve got the best chance of grinning elation on the day AND when looking back.
    Oh, and get a good photographer!

  • http://loveyourway.net lizzie

    The fuss! Exactly! We are planning a wedding, but it’s fuss-free so far. I’ll not be bothered with things like linens…who the hell ever thought we’d be talking over linens?! FIGHTING over linens?! I love your decision…and think it was perfect for you.

    • http://www.twitter.com/kahlia kahlia

      The problems (at least for me) didn’t arise because we cared about linens, but rather because we didn’t care and still had to make a decision. I was able to pass a lot of that off on other people—my wonderful mother went to the linen rental place with the knowledge that I would like 1. white, 2. deep purple (NOT eggplant), or 3. lavender, in that order… and came back with eggplant, since that was all they had. I said, “Thank you so much for doing that for me!” and was over it. Apparently she was very worried that they only had the one color I’d specifically said I didn’t want & spent like 10 minutes doubting the decision… which is precisely why I didn’t want to go in the first place!

  • JUST JENCIL

    Beautiful post, such wise words. Kudos to words about recognizing people’s reactions and accepting them, just as your actions need to be accepted as well.

    Personally, if an elopement is the way to go for you and your partner and its within your comfort zone, it would be nice to throw a small party with close friends and family after the fact, or let others throw one in your honor! It provides an opportunity for people to come together and celebrate, something which the importance of is often overlooked. As someone who is the first to get married around her, the only opportunity to come together as a larger family unit and community has been funerals over the past few years, bittersweet moments that mostly celebrate the past. Weddings provide moments for those around you to celebrate the future and hope, which might explain strong reactions from those who missed out on that opportunity for a large gathering.

    But its important to do what makes you and your partner happiest. Others have to learn to have a little more Bea in them, be happy for the happiness of others.

  • http://whatcanyoueatblog.blogspot.com/ Sara

    Thanks for these tips. I had always wanted to elope and after 10 years of going out my husband and I took a trip to Jamaica and got married there, just the two of us. Jamaica was amazing and I wouldn’t trade my wedding in for anything, but then I came home. My parents were very happy for us. I was worried about my dad (having his feelings hurt) but he was overjoyed and my mom kinda knew already so things were fine there and so were things with his dad. (we made a surprise movie and had his dad and brother and my mom dad and brother over) However, I would have never expected the reactions from everyone else. We sent out these awesome witty cards letting everyone else know that we eloped and after I sent them out I waited…and waited…and waited. 2 months and no “congratulations,” no cards, no presents, nothing. It felt like no one cared, and these were our best friends and extended family. It hurt so bad, still does 8 months later. I still have a whole huge set of custom made thank you cards, and only sent out two. I will never regret what we did (although it would have been nice to been proposed to) but I will no longer feel the same about 46 out of the 50 people we sent our wedding messages to. Elopements really let you know who cares about you.

    • Alden

      Sara, I know that it’s been ages since you wrote this comment, but it really struck a cord with me. I wanted to read this post over again to help remind me of why my fiance and are are eloping. This is exactly what both of us want, but I feel so guilty when I think about my parents and sister. I am expecting the same sort of reaction, or lack thereof, that you received from my extended family. I don’t know them very well, but when they found out that we got engaged they all got really excited about the thought of a “family reunion” at my wedding. So I am expecting some judgments from them.

  • http://clarekrmiller.digitalnovelists.com Clare

    This was a really useful post to me! I’d been thinking on and off about eloping (my fiance, darling man that he is, mostly just says “whatever you want to do”–I’m hoping and expecting he’ll get more involved as we get more into actual planning, since right now we’re in the “thinking about it” stage), mostly because the stress of planning a wedding seemed really overwhelming. Reading this post–especially the first question–made me realize that eloping isn’t what I want. Hopefully I can still deal with the stress! ;)

    I love Bea’s advice, too.

  • http://www.thedenverdiaries.blogspot.com April P.

    This post could not have been more dead on. My husband and I eloped at the San Francisco City Hall in October (you can read about it/see the video here: http://www.designspongeonline.com/2010/11/weekly-wrap-up-beautiful-elopement-video.html)

    I did not expect the rush of emotions I would feel after eloping, and like you, I had a rush of “oh no- what just happened?”. Now, three months later, all of the reactions and feelings have calmed down and I have nothing but gushy happy memories and feelings about our perfect wedding day.

    i think it also helps that i’m in the wedding industry and get to be a part of about 25 big weddings a year. i see the stress and the chaos and sometimes the brides on xanax, and i just didn’t see myself in all of that. there’s nothing wrong with the big wedding, if that’s you. for us, eloping was perfect.

    thanks so much for sharing your story and tips, Lindsey! I think this will help a lot of people.
    -April

    side note tip: hire a videographer! it was the best money we spent and allowed our friends and family to feel like they were there. not to mention, it helps us remember all the love we felt that day. we rarely realized Britt (video guy) was around. he was great.

  • Sarahkay

    Sigh. Elopements are so romantic. My grandparents eloped and they’ve had one of the happiest, longest marriages I know of. I wanted to elope with my beloved, but he said no :( So we’re doing a destination wedding instead with maybe a few family members and friends.

  • Bea

    One thing I’ve found works like a charm to quickly explain your choice to people who ask why you eloped instead of having a “real” wedding is to mention the cost – especially in this economy. Everyone who knows anyone who’s gotten married, let alone done it themselves, knows that weddings can be monstrously expensive affairs. My friends who have eloped usually tell people that they did it because they would rather have put the money they would have spent on a wedding towards a down payment on a house/a retirement fund/paying down debts/something else that would help them in their married life. Whether that’s the true reason or not, it’s quick to explain and pretty hard to argue with.

  • http://www.cureendometriosis.com Melissa

    Another wonderful post!
    My partner and I just got engaged in December – YIPPEEEE!
    We have always wanted to do the shotgun elope to an island kinda wedding. We announced it at Christmas and to be honest we were quite disappointed at everyone’s reaction. It seemed to stir more emotions in our family than we perhaps realised and it didn’t feel like they could put their own stuff aside and be happy for us. A little sad! Some felt that “marriage wasn’t that important”, others felt like a “proper wedding” would be more suited.
    We had no idea we would get such diverse reactions.
    We are so happy though that we have decided that on the day, it will just be the two of us! It is after all OUR celebration :)

  • Rebecca

    I have been planning back and forth around from small wedding to big wedding to the two of us and back. This has been helpful and great decision making advice. It answered every question I had in my mind. Great writing!
    Best
    Rebecca

  • Julie soontobeGreen

    Great page for truly things to think about when eloping!

    This is a 2nd marraige for us both, we’re almost 50 yr old, and just made a decision to elope.
    I feel more relieved and excited about driving to Galveston , getting married on the beach( his original request was a beach wedding) and then boarding a ship for a 7 day cruise!

    Much better than spending the same amount of money for a 3 hr party and NO honeymoon.

    I think my fiance is thinking it will upset his best friend & wife, not to know and be there , but he himself also said “they’ll get over it ” . And I said if we are eloping, let’s do the whole tthing… tell no one. Then we will call our grown kids and BM and MOH ( and his best friend) just before we set sail.

    I’ve already found an affordable photographer, and plan to get some great pictures so we can share them with everyone when we get back. We’ll have all the photos on the cruise and excursions too … then later after my house sells and move his land , we’ll be able to have a big housewarming and reception and dinner and dance and party at the new place. We could even almost recreate the beach scene haha

  • SP

    I’m trying to plan a post-wedding/baby-on-the-way party and am having a tough time wording the invitation! My parents are throwing it for us and it’s turning into basically a wedding reception (plus baby shower on the side).

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  • Katie

    How did you deal with your father and his feelings? My fiancee and I want to elope, he has social phobia. My mom has said to me on numerous occasions that it would be unforigable if we did elope (we hadn’t even discussed the idea with her yet). We have been working on a quick city hall wedding and our date is July 11! However, trying to appease everyone and not offend people is causing us stress we were trying to avoid. We should be happy right. And nowI am not looking forward to it.
    We offered for my parents to come, since we did that we had to ask his parents to come. The trouble with that is his/our only niece will be out of school and at her grandmothers (his mother).
    His niece has been the biggest cheerleader of our relationship telling my fiancee that i am a catch if he doesn’t marry me soon hes going to lose out b/c im too good for him. So it would make sense to have her there.
    With feeling my parents would be offended that his niece came and i didn’t invite my sister we asked for her to come aswell. And then to even it out, we extended it to his sister.
    Immediate blood realitives only. Which my fiancee has accepted as the most that can come. Its already too big for him. My parents are mad that we did not extend it to my sisters on and off again boyfriend now turned fiancee.
    I do not understand why weddings are so stressful when really it is to be between us, the two people who are standing up to announce our love and promise to love and cherrish eachother.
    I just needed to vent b/c people think that we are being horrible people not inviting my sisters fiancee and his sisters second husband.

  • Sierra Schluchter

    Hello all I’ve been toying with the idea of eloping and had everything booked until today when I decided to even be more practical and get married at a local court house- then after telling my mother I was going to have a courthouse wedding instead and plan a huge party after, she started in with her two cents about how we should be married by a preacher and that God should be incorporated into our ceremony- mind you I am from oklahoma and it’s the bible belt which my fiancé and I are believers but we don’t do the church thing well. Now 2nd this is my second wedding and his first which we both truly hate weddings and it’s more of the stress and tension it puts on everyone. I need people’s advice cause I don’t want to upset my mother or my groom to be but I am totally stuck! We would rather save money and put it towards a down payment on a home then have a huge over done over stressed wedding.

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