Connie & Brian

*Connie, Interactive Designer & Brian, Writer*

Today’s wedding graduate post is TheBest (all one word). First, there is a letter from the Groom to his past self, which is so good I was quoting it to everyone. Second, there is the discussion of how, when you’re trying really hard to have a low-stress wedding, you can often stress yourselves out… you know… trying to have a low stress wedding. And as my groom always reminded me during my wedding breakdowns, trying to have an affordable wedding and doing it all yourself is just hard. And that’s normal. So, let’s get ready for hilarious/awesome:

From the Groom:

Dear Pre-wedding Version of Me (You),

My goodness! Much as you might surmise, I am very relieved that the planning/pre-wedding stage of my (your) relationship with Connie (Connie) has finally come to an end. I now spend every day simply enjoying the act of being married to her, instead of spending every weekend and most weeknights preparing and shopping and checking and balancing and crafting and all of those tasks you are most certainly mired in.

But I want you to know something very important: everything you are doing, whether you are enjoying it in the moment or not, is completely worth every second. It came out fantastically, living up to and exceeding the image that I (you) had (have) in my (your) head about how it would turn out. Sure, there are things I should possibly tell you to change—a few invitees here and there, things not to bother retrieving because they really didn’t come into play in the actual proceedings—but as much as I may want to do so, you and I both know that this will cause a temporal paradox that will inevitably change the timeline as we know it, like making us have a robot president, or causing pedestrians to be randomly attacked by mutant grandmothers or something, and/or make the whole darn universe explode into tiny pieces.

The advice that I can give is this: keep your calm, and remain a rock amid rough seas. Know that the pressure she feels is put on herself by A) Her motivation to excel at crafty-type ventures and B) Her desire to outdo the events of everyone she knows, for all time. Understand that she also needs you (me) to show that you care as much as she does, despite that I (you) know you already do, so support her and be willing to get frazzled once in a while.

Remember that these days only exist because of how much you love one another, and not because you are thinking of buying a Goodwill and must constantly visit every one of them to assess their wares. Continue onward, and you (I) will one day enjoy the post-marital shenanigans that I (you) treasure every day and for all time!

Good Luck,

Me (You)

From the Bride!

While we were getting ready for the wedding, in our respective rooms across from each other in our apartment, I opened a gift from Brian that perfectly summed up the entire wedding—a framed embroidery of Jessie Spano’s historical meltdown. I had been so frazzled up until that exact day that when I opened it, I almost started crying, much to the horror of my friend Melissa, who was trying to let my eyelashes dry.

We always told ourselves that we wanted our wedding to be as no-fuss as possible, as short as possible (we’re both severely shy about standing up in front of people, even if it’s dearly loved family and friends), and most importantly, drama-free.

We had seen enough episodes of (insert wedding-drama-related-show-title-on-the-WE-network) to know that we didn’t want screaming and crying to make up the year before our wedding. We still had our lives, and we wanted to look back fondly on the time planning our wedding.

Well, things like money, DIY-induced-stress (when friends offer to help you make things—oh fer the love of jeebus, say yes), and quitting your job weeks before the wedding happened. No matter how drama-less we tried to keep things, it didn’t lift the weight of the wedding off my shoulders.

What did help was having the most amazingly calm, rational, and helpful fiancé anyone could ask for, friends who were not only willing to lend an ear but also some hard manual labor hours, and a planner who never showed a bead of sweat while pulling together every little DIY idea you had in your head.

Yeah, it was worth it. You’d probably have to slap that smile off my face that day.

The Info—Photography: Michael Chan from The Image is Found / VenueMarvimon House / Dress: Dolly CoutureShoes: Vivienne Westwood + Melissa Shoes (Lady Dragon) / Hairpiece: BandoSuit: Ben ShermanShoes: Cole Haan / Hair & Makeup: Melissa KruegerDIY support: Michael’s & JoAnn Fabrics (only during the 50% off coupon days!)

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  • I just love that background , makes for pretty cool photos.
    And the dress (now I feel so superficial for getting wrapped up by the visual details).
    Congratulations to you both, and yes, all the stress is worth it, and it always ends up turning out better than you imagined. Because of the joy I dare say.

  • I also worked hard to keep my wedding drama free. I found pacing out the crafts really helped (thanks, APW, for reminding me!). I had deadlines — just rough ones, in my head — and if a craft wasn’t started/finished by that deadline, I let it go. Maybe it helps that I was in grad school and had a crazy term, or that I went home for a week the week before the wedding (for Christmas — flew back on the Sunday before our Friday wedding).

    I like Brian’s reminder from the groom about how the groom needs to help to show the bride what he already knows (that is, that he loves her). I think my husband would say the same thing. He loves me and cared about our wedding, so he did try to jump in and help, even if the details didn’t really matter for him. We did a lot of picking which things would be his task, and I (mostly) let him do them without too much micromanaging.

    Thanks for sharing your wedding with us! And, yes to the Jessie Spano meltdown. She puts everything into perspective. No drugs needed to get through your wedding? Win.

  • I just about died laughing when I saw the Jessie Spano meltdown crosstich. Best gift ever!

    Also “Amen” for the 50% off Michaels and JoAnns coupons.

    • Ha! Yes! That is the BEST gift I have ever seen! I just HAD to pin it.

  • PA

    How many of us have said, in tears, “I was supposed to be BEING CALM!!” and then broken down in hysterical sobs?

    Whatever the strife before the wedding, though, it was *beautiful* and you look radiant! Also, that is an awesome letter!

  • Hey guys! Back from a long comment vacation (but was reading every day still) I have to agree with Brian that stress is driven by:

    A) Her motivation to excel at crafty-type ventures and
    B) Her desire to outdo the events of everyone she knows, for all time.

    I would have to add:

    C) Her need to design an event that is as SPECIAL as you are to her–something that is WORTHY and equal to the specialness of your love.

    Problem is, C is impossible, so I recommend letting that one go.

    Such a great couple… my favorite part is Brian’s palpable thrill of just being married to Connie.

    • Kris

      AGREE. C is by far the hardest one to let go of! I know that I’m already a crafty-type person so most of my guests will be impressed by whatever details I end up DIYing, and I’m coming to terms with the fact that everyone has their own ‘style’ for their weddings and my wedding will never be better than how theirs feels for them… BUT… the whole “I love you so much and I want you to spend your entire wedding day laughing and loved by all of the things I did to show you how much I love you” feeling is just incredibly hard to shake.

      Beautiful wedding! LOVE that first image. And I’m glad the groom didn’t go back and mess up history. It sounds like nothing needed to change and I for one am glad we do not have to submit to our robot overlords… yet.

  • I love that you included your dog in the ceremony! We did that too and even got a cake topper made of our pup as well!!! I probably come off as a crazy dog lover but it just seems so right to not exclude such an important and faithful member of the family on such an important day! Probably my favorite photo of our wedding day is when my husband was carrying me over the threshold of our house and our dog was stepping over the threshold at the exact same time. We didn’t even know she was there… and that moment just so perfectly captures what our little fam is all about!

    • Our favorite wedding picture, the one that we ended up framing , is the one where you can see two huge, cuddly terranova dogs, that happened to be walking in the park behind us. :) I am a vet, so I love animals with all my heart.

  • I love it! This sums up more or less exactly how I felt about our wedding. We tried so hard to keep the stress down, and sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn’t, but it worked out perfectly in the end. Thanks for sharing. :)

  • Great photos, really different wedding!

  • love the letter from the groom!

  • Tamara Van Horn

    Brian gave you a cross-stitch of Spano’s meltdown!? FTW. My grad-student work-wife and I say that to each oter all the time!

  • Glad to be greeted by this wedding graduate post in my sleepy haze this morning. I had no idea you guys had a post in the works. Awesome photographs. And since I was in attendance, I can vouch for how fantastically spectacular the wedding was.

    Happy to see you happy.

  • A framed & embroidered quote from Saved by the Bell (that I act out on a pretty regular basis)?!?! I’m in love. :)

  • I love love LOVE this groom’s letter to himself; I hope my fiance feels the exact same way about all the tedious DIY projects he is doing for me (us).

  • The Groom’s letter is priceless! So are the big smiles on the wedding day :-)