How to organize a wedding and reception in a… week?!

Hey there!

As most of you know, I got married in February this year. Why am I writing this post now? I never planned it to happen but lately I was going through my older posts, I saw pictures and I remembered everything. I then realized that I never told you how things went and there was a lot of stuff happening… I hope that this post will make you smile a little. It’ll be loooong… If you’re already bored with this subject then the time now is a good time to stop reading this 😀

Date and guests

We didn’t have any special requests about the date. We just chose a day and it was February 22. From the very beginning we were talking about getting married without any parties and then after some time to repeat that with guests and with all that stuff, we never wanted to have anything big, a traditional Polish wedding – nope, I don’t approve – we didn’t want to have any big party. In general, like I said, we got married because we love each other but at the same time the truth is that if not my visa situation and my stay in the USA that was supposed to end in November this year, we’d wait with it for a while. Life is life.

However, the closer it was to that day, the more thought were coming to my mind, like, for example, darn it, maybe I’ll wear a white dress. Maybe we’ll invite a few people. And then, if we do invite them, we could organize a small dinner as well. If so, where? Our house? But then who’d cook? Not the Bride, of course. If not at home, then we’ll need to find a place! And this is how everything started and it happened only a few days before the date we chose.

My opinion: I think that inviting people I don’t know/I don’t like only because “I should” or “they’d be mad” is pointless. Why to have someone who I don’t like to be around or I just don’t want to have them? I haven’t talked to my cousins for at least 10 years now but they didn’t like the fact that I didn’t tell them anything and, honestly, I don’t have any problem with that.

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Invitations

Since Nate agreed to do something a little bigger than we first thought, we needed to create a guest list. There were only his friends from work, his mother and her brother, my friend and later I found out that Magda came here as well. In total, we had around 35 people on the list, if I remember well. Since I’m a bit traditionalist kind of a person, I wanted to give them invitations but I didn’t want to buy them… I made them myself. Each one looked almost the same and I spent a lot of time on making them but I didn’t spend much money. On Monday I went to Nathan’s office and we handed them to people.

My opinion: I don’t have anything against ready invitations! I just like the idea of hand-made ones if there isn’t many guests. I think it’s a cool gesture.

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In general, I don’t believe in things like that but there’s one thing that is stuck in my head and I didn’t want to think about it on the day like that. A long, long time ago I heard that the color red on weddings and receptions brings bad luck. As some of you know, my mom died before my 7th birthday. On her wedding she had a bouquet with red roses. I just put these two things together a long time ago and I decided to hold on to it. I don’t need any bad luck 🙂

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Venue and food

It was a tough one because I had no idea what to look for. All the places I saw were typically for wedding and they were huge! With room for a lot of people, dancing all night and so on, this was not what we wanted and definitely not what we needed. We also didn’t want to draw people all over the state or to spend thousands of dollars for several hours. I spent half of the day on this and I didn’t find anything worth my attention. I then remembered that one of my friends said that her friend moved here and she’s a professional wedding planner. She also said she’d ask her for help. I sent a message and then got a number to that woman so I called here and she recommended a place where a week before she had a party or something. We set up a meeting out there, got a menu offer, price and everything else and we were supposed to let her know the next day (Wednesday) if we wanted to get married there. And, of course, our answer was YES.

So we could use a place in a golf club; two rooms separated with a big door which was cool and worked very well – in one room there were tables, in another one our ceremony. Big windows around, nice view (even though it was February), a room for our music equipment, one more table with the cake… everything discussed. They have their own kitchen so we ordered starters, salads and a big and very good meal (no meat) and also a glass of champagne for everyone (no other alcohol). They also gave us table cloths, chair covers, candles. I also had a “Bridal suite” out there. I’ll show you a pic of food and later pics of decorated room.

My opinion: I think that a menu selection is on a couple. We had a vegetarian meal even though all of our guests were meat eaters; we didn’t want any other alcohol besides champagne. Nobody had a problem with that and some of them even wanted a recipe from the cook! I think that if something (like, in this case, meat) is against the couple’s beliefs, nobody should force them to that. I really don’t like this Polish opinion that if there’s a wedding, then there has to be a lot of meat because otherwise guests will be hungry and liters and liters of vodka… No. By the way, vegetarian and vegan diets aren’t based salads only 🙂

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Wedding

We created our vows and the whole plan ourselves. Fortunately, a person who married us is Nate’s friend from work so when I was there in their office, we could sit together and make it work. It took 2 days I guess because we had a few proposals but most of them were religious and we didn’t want any of that so it took some time to change things, add some new ones and make everything fit. At the end everything sounded perfectly and I’m really happy that we created everything by ourselves because it was more ours.

My opinion: a civil wedding can also be special and climatic 🙂

Dress

Man, here we had a lot of stress… First time when I tried on some dresses was the beginning of January and it was mostly because we wanted to have a photoshoot and that’s all. Later it got quiet and I woke up with that a week before when we had the date, people were invited, we had the venue… On the Internet I saw my dream dress but I didn’t believe that I’d find it in such a short time and that it’d be my size and wouldn’t need any corrections… You know, the dress totally in my style – bare shoulders, showing body’s figure, anything like a “princess” type of a dress which I never liked.

Below you have three pictures of me trying on some dresses.

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On Tuesday I called places we went to before and unfortunately the only dress that fit me and I liked was sold out and the rest would have to be reduce which would take around 5-7 weeks and we didn’t have time for that. In other place they had a different and really nice dress but it was too short! There was an option to order the same one from the brand website in a “tall” version which would be perfect but it’d take 4-5 weeks. I started to call some different places where we didn’t go to before. In some of them all the times for trying dresses were taken, in other ones they didn’t have any dresses in my size on hangers… And they asked me everywhere what is our wedding date and when I said “Sunday”, they laughed at me 😀  I think it was the last shop I called where a woman, after first disbelief and thoughts that I was joking, said that they did have a few dresses in my size and that I could come the next day. The woman asked me also if I had anyone to do something with the dress if it was too small or something so I said no and she answered that she never had a case like that but she told me to come anyway.

So we drove there the next day (Atlanta, 40 minutes away from our house). I chose a few dresses to try on and you won’t believe but I found the one I fell in love with on the Internet! Cool, huh? It was in the size I wear but it still needed to be smaller. I learned that it usually takes around 5 weeks but this woman called a person they work with if it comes to alterations and she said it’s an emergency and asked if she had time to do everything by Saturday. The alteration lady got surprised and even I could hear it 😉 but she agreed. We bought the dress, the woman packed it, then a quick picture with a mannequin for their website (I’m gonna post it below) and we went to the other place. More fitting out there and we left the dress. I was supposed to go there on Friday to check if it fits and then we figured out that it still needed some more fabric to go away. The dress had to be picked up on Saturday at 4PM the latest because they were closing their shop then. Okay then, 4PM on Saturday, got it.

By the way, if any of you was looking for a wedding dress in Atlanta area, I highly recommend Suite Bridal because they have an excellent staff, beautiful dresses, atmosphere… They said that I was their first client to get married with their dress so they asked me for some pics and a short note that they could post on their website and you can check it out HERE.

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Nathan’s suit

It was much easier, of course. We went to a place where they were renting suits but I don’t remember what day it was. We looked through their catalog and we chose what we liked, a worker got all Nate’s measurements and we were supposed to pick it up on Friday.

Wedding bands

I don’t even remember when we did it exactly but it was the same week. I think it was the very beginning because I remember we had a problem with dates and a woman working in a jewelry shop had to beg for making our bands and my engagement ring smaller… My fingers are so thin 😀 Fortunately it worked and I picked them up after I picked up Nathan’s suit. During the ceremony Alicia gave Nathan the band for me and I got mine from Blade who married us.

My opinion: I like white gold much more than yellow gold.

 

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Cake

I don’t remember when I went to Publix to ask about the cake but I think it was Wednesday. When I informed a confectioner that I needed a wedding cake for Sunday… she laughed so hard. She said that it usually takes around 4 weeks for that. I didn’t give up and I proposed a few changes what significantly made the whole process faster and the cake was ready on Saturday!

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A bouquet for me and fresh flowers

There were some problems here as well! I suppose that it’s not the same in the whole country but in my area all the flower shops I visited (and I visited a lot of them) they have only fake flowers and catalogs with the real ones that have to be ordered. In the last place we visited that day (Thursday) a florist asked me what I was looking for so I said I was looking for some flowers to put together in a bouquet. She asked for what occasion so I said: for my wedding on Sunday. And then she was like, oh my dear, you can’t do that, you need to schedule an appointment with our boss for a consultation, she has to think it over and she’s the only one who has “permissions” to make wedding bouquets! I got so pissed off then because I didn’t hear more nonsense in a long time and I was already stressed and tired enough so I just left. Good thing that Nate was there with me but after that he had to go to work.

In the very morning the next day, Friday, I went to a different place that I found somewhere accidentally. I went in and it was only that I could smell fresh flowers but also women out there were very nice. I told them right then that I knew they’d be surprised but I needed a wedding bouquet and around 12 small bouquets for the tables for the following Sunday. Both said that they could do it but they’re closed on Sundays… So I said well, that’s fine, I’ll take them on Saturday. I gave them small flowerpots I bought in Hobby Lobby (more about this below). They asked me about colors and what I wanted in general, they showed me what they had. Then an owner of that place came in and she said that a delivery guy was about to drive new flowers for them so she called him and told him to add some blue flowers as well (because I wanted this color) and she also said she’d bring the flowers to the venue by herself on Sunday because she wanted them to be fresh! I was very thankful!

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Decorations

After the visit in that unlucky flower shop when I got nervous, I dropped Nathan off at his work and I went to Hobby Lobby to look for some decorations for tables and rooms in general. I bought two decorative champagne glasses, some fake flowers, lights… But I didn’t have enough so I went to Michaels where I bought some more stuff and I got home around 10PM, very tired. But I had everything I needed! The only thing left then was just to decide what goes where and how but I could do it on the bed so I just took a paper and a pen and I wrote down everything.

My opinion: I reaaaaally liked looking for and picking decorations, seriously! I think this is a great thing and if you have a chance and you want to, I recommend to do it by yourself. Or with your future husband if he’s interested 😉

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Flowers around the cake are the ones me and Magda bought at the last moment.

 

Photographer

The woman who recommended the venue gave us a number to a photographer as well and she had some time on Sunday, also she takes much less than typical wedding photographers because she was doing this just for some extra money, not professionally. So we set up everything with here in two days – we chose shots we cared about the most, signed the agreement and so on.

Making sure everything is fine

First I checked if I had everything but I obviously didn’t so I had to go out and buy some more – it took at least an hour.

Later I was looking for a hairdresser! Can you believe that I realized I had no idea what I’d do with my hair on Friday? I called some places but nobody had anything available. I reached the moment when I cried and I called Nathan to tell him that I didn’t have a hairdresser… I said I didn’t want to and I didn’t have any patience anymore and asked him to take care of it. I gave him three more numbers and he promised to call and let me know. He called me back like an hour later and said that he found a place where they usually open at noon on Sundays but one receptionist and a hairdresser will come at 11 because otherwise I wouldn’t have enough time. I felt such a relief, really. I also found out that that place owner is Polish and she left me a card with some wishes 🙂

I got myself together after this information and I went to pick up Nathan’s suit, then our bands, later I picked him up from work and we both went to Atlanta for last fitting of my dress. Like I already said, I had to leave it for another night and go back there on Saturday.

After that we went somewhere to eat and then to the airport to pick up Magda who decided about coming here on Wednesday that week!

Saturday

The day before me and Nathan came up with a plan for Saturday and Sunday but it obviously didn’t work the way it should have. The main thing was that Nate was supposed to go to Atlanta to pick up my dress and at the same time me and Magda were supposed to have some lunch after several hours of looking for a jewelry which I forgot about before as well. When I had my necklace and bracelets, I called him and asked if he was ready to go to Atlanta because it was 3PM. He said he dropped Margie (his mother) off to her hairdresser and he had to pick her up (we had two cars for three small groups). I got so stressed and I told him okay so then I’ll go and he was like no, no, he’ll make it. It turned out he didn’t make it on time but he called and asked if anyone would be there. One person said she’d wait. So we could eat normally and get some energy and when we got home, the dress waited for me.

This night I packed my stuff and painted tree that was our guest book and now it’s on the wall in our hall. After I finished that, we left to my small but very nice bachelorette party 🙂

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Before midnight we were choosing and downloading songs we wanted to listen to the next day. It was a miracle that we remembered about that!

Sunday!!

Everyone got up in the morning, coffee, breakfast… Magda went to the hair saloon with me and when I stayed there, she went to a sandwich shop. When she came back, we ate them, one more coffee. The hairdresser was soooo cool! We spent a great time there. And this is the place I go back to each time I want to trim my hair.

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Right after we left that place, we went to Kroger because I thought that it’d be cool to have some more flowers and put them on tables or something. On the way there we decided what to get – white tulips and some small thingies that I have no idea how you call them – we went inside, took what we wanted (fortunately they had tulips!) and then to check out and to the car… My heart was beating so fast because the time was passing by and I had my whole hair done and a scarf on my head (it was raining) and was buying flowers for the last moment, literally.

We got to the venue exactly how we planned – at 1PM – and it was another miracle. A little breathless but we could rest in the Bridal Suite.

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I know it’s just a room with some furniture… But I liked it a lot, really!

And our photographer came there and started to take pictures right then. She said: “I’ve never seen such a calm Bride before”. I realized that yeah, at that moment I didn’t have any stress anymore and I felt well… For a while. Take a look at what I’m doing with my hands in this picture…

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We rested for a little but but we didn’t have much time so we started to put our make-ups on, I was doing my make-up by myself; Alicia was keeping us company.

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When I finished, Magda went to control the situation, what was happening and so on (and I’m really thankful for that) and when she came back, she said that nothing was done. I got nervous and called Nathan and he said that everything was under control. So I waited because I didn’t want to go there earlier. Later someone let me know that everything was ready and they were waiting for me only. I put my dress on, Magda put the veil in my hair, I checked myself in the mirror, then several pictures, I took my bouquet and got on the way…

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Nate had a bow tie with a color of our decorations 🙂

So, a little summary: a week of running there and there, driving around, being tired, nervous… And at the end everything went well, the guests liked it very much, they liked food and our cake, my dress and hair as well, they said it was very elegant and so on… Me and Nathan were happy, Alicia was happy and everything went the way we wanted 🙂 Would I change anything? No. And you know what I thought when everything was over? I thought that I was really happy that we did everything so fast. Despite the whole stress and overwork; now when I think about that I smile and I’m proud of myself that I did everything in such a short period of time. When I imagined that I’d plan everything for a year or even 2-3 years like some people do and I’d be in stress the whole time, I think the only thing I’d dream of would be the moment when everything would be over… And this is not about that, I think 🙂

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Talk to you next time!

Aga

 

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Related posts:

I said YES! 🙂

Not Miss Agnieszka W anymore…

 

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  • Belinda

    You just left me speechless with this wedding story. The photos are just stunning. And you – such a beautiful bride. Btw, I love your dress girl! 🙂 I will get my own wedding in 4 months and we just purchased wedding rings today. I’m so excited!! 🙂 We’ve chosen wooden rings just like these http://www.weddingspell.com/2016/10/20/wooden-wedding-ring/. I really really like them 🙂
    However, I hope to have such a beautiful wedding as you did.
    Have a great day!

    • Aga

      Thank you so much! And good luck with everything! I like rings you chose, they’re totally different than everyone’s, it’s really cool to have something unique.