Every Mistake I’ve Made Planning Our Wedding (And What I’ve Learned Along the Way)

Ok, so maybe I haven’t made a ton of mistakes, BUT I have made SOME. And so I thought I would share…because sharing is caring.

So, my fiance, Steven, and I are getting married in June. When we got engaged, we had approximately 14 months until our wedding day. Which seemed like a lifetime to wait. But, here we are, less than three months out, and I’m feeling…way behind schedule.

Sharing all the mistakes I've made in planning our wedding...so you don't make them too! #engaged #wedding #weddingplanning #bridetobe #junebride #bride #groom #love #catholic #edrecovery #engagement


Now, this one was a little out of our control. We had to reschedule our “shopping date” two different times due to Long Covid, but I thought that eight months would have been sufficient enough time to make a dress…boy, was I wrong.

Let’s just say that my dress isn’t going to be ready until about 10 days before our wedding…in New York.

So yes, I will have to fly to NYC less than two weeks before the wedding to pick up the dress…let’s pray that nothing goes wrong between now and then, and that they actually get it finished on time! AND THAT IT FITS!

Sharing all the mistakes I've made in planning our wedding...so you don't make them too! #engaged #wedding #weddingplanning #bridetobe #junebride #bride #groom #love #catholic #edrecovery #engagement


Yep — it turns out, that cake shops can’t just snap their fingers and have a wedding cake appear at a moment’s notice. Turns outyou have to get on their calendar. DUH, CARALYN!

Well, June is, of course, a popular month to get married, and surprise surprise, our two top cake shops were unavailable our weekend, because they already had other weddings booked. So don’t wait until 3 months before the wedding!


Are you noticing a theme here? Yep – after I booked the venue and had the dress, I kind of sat on my haunches and got too comfortable. And now, here we are, less than three months out and we’re still waiting to on our invitation proofs to approve them, print and mail them out!


Okay, you would think that this is a no-brainer. But…yes, I can be disorganized when it comes to delegation. Who’s supplying what? Who did we ask to do this or that, and have we asked them yet to do it? Little things that are able to slip the mind…do!

OK — so thankfully, all those mistakes are not huge, make-or-break “uh-oh’s.”

Now, onto the extra helpful part:

Sharing all the mistakes I've made in planning our wedding...so you don't make them too! #engaged #wedding #weddingplanning #bridetobe #junebride #bride #groom #love #catholic #edrecovery #engagement


1.) Don’t sleep on the “little rocks.”

So you’ve got your “BIG ROCKS” — aka: the venue, the dress, marriage prep, the photographer, the videographer, Save the Dates, the music, the flowers. The little rocks are everything else: transportation, the cake, party favors, invitations, seating charts, menu cards, booking your hair and makeup, bachelorette party, choosing the food for your reception. These are little rocks and are precisely the things that can sneak up on you and bite you in the tushie if you wait too long! So don’t leave them until the last minute like I did. Book them early!

2.) Everything costs way more that you expected.

Yeah…be ready for sticker shock.

3.) Dress Shopping “DO’S!”

When you go dress shopping with your shopping buddy (mine was my mom)…have them take lots of pictures! FROM EVERY ANGLE! This is so important. Not only so you can go back and look at them to help you decide, BUT you can only see the dress from head-on in the mirror. Everyone else sees it from every which way. Seeing my two dress contenders side by side in photos from the back is what ultimately made me decide on the one I chose! Also – some dresses photograph way differently than they look on. AND, some dresses look way different ON than they do on the rack!

Next, try on dress styles that you never would expect to like!

I went in thinking I knew exactly which dress style was going to be it. I thought I would try on one style and be done with it! This style is what everyone thought I was going to choose, it’s very “on par” with the way I always dress. But it turns out, when I tried it on, I thought …This looks like something I would wear on any old night out on the town. So surprise yourself!

4) Be sure to include your fiance in all the decisions!

This one I am just throwing in there for anyone who needs to hear it. I think Steven and I really did an excellent job on this one: we both feel complete ownership on the decisions we made. We did everything together…except the dress! Wedding planning is a fun thing to do together! Even when it comes to little details you may think are boring to a guy…like what the invitations look like…you’ll be surprised that they want to be included! It’s their “big day” too! So make these little tasks a date! πŸ™‚

Sharing all the mistakes I've made in planning our wedding...so you don't make them too! #engaged #wedding #weddingplanning #bridetobe #junebride #bride #groom #love #catholic #edrecovery #engagement

5) Wedding Planners don’t actually plan the wedding for you.

This, I was extremely shocked at…you mean they’re not going to do everything for me? Nope. They’ll keep you on track and your timeline up to snuff, but when it comes to making the phone calls and doing the dirty work, that’s on you, sis. They’ll be a life saver on the Big Day as your day-of-coordinator, but in the planning phase, they’ll just give you recommendations on which vendors they like to work with, and what you need to do next.


Yep, they go fast, and are expensive. So, especially if you’re going to a popular place like we are, book them early!

One other honeymoon tip: use your credit card travel points for flights/hotels! Every little bit helps! We were able to book all of our airfare using travel credit card points. So if you’re engaged, or near-engagement…save up those points so you can use them when and where it counts!


Lastly, and most importantly…remember why you’re doing this! All the stress and planning and deadlines and this and that…it’s just one day. An important day, yes: it’s the first day of your marriage. But that’s what all this excitement is really about: your marriage spending the rest of your life with your partner. I am so excited to share my life with Steven, and this period of engagement has been so huge for us to learn about each other, and prepare our hearts and our souls for this journey we’re about take take together. The wedding day is exciting, and we’re so pumped to throw the party of our lives for everyone we love, but the real excitement is for the day after the wedding. And the day after that, and the day after that and on and on for the rest of our lives.


On that note, it’s time for me to go and spend some quality time with my man. It’s now after 5, we’re both off work, and I can’t wait to sit down to a nice meal together!

Until tomorrow!

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23 responses to “Every Mistake I’ve Made Planning Our Wedding (And What I’ve Learned Along the Way)”

    • hahah thanks John – definitely not a walk in the park, but I’m sure it’s going to be so worth it! thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

    • Hi Stephanie! Oh yay! I’m glad you thought it was fun too! It’s a little outside my normal, but hey — sometimes you’ve gotta shake it up, right?! haha Right!!? I was SHOCKED at how non-“plannery” a wedding planner is! And for what they charge…..yowza. thanks so much for stopping by and sharing in this joyful season with me! Hugs and love xox

  1. Great Post!
    Stay close to the Lord; encourage each other in Him.
    One day, should He tarry, you will see 50 years will have passed!
    And that’s just the beginning!! πŸ™‚

    • Hi Myron! amen to that! Encourage one another in Him — that is the best advice of all! that is the goal! My parents are actually going to be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary here next year. What a beautiful milestone! so glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

  2. Caralyn, seeing you go through planning for this big day has me almost in (good) tears. To see the journey Jesus has led you on… when you wrote about dreaming about finding that perfect guy… and now seeing it come to fruition is very beautiful. It gives me hope, that God is SO good and that we really need to give ourselves grace, let Him lead, guide and heal us, and accept every blessing He gives. May you and Steven not only have an amazing wedding, but an amazing, Godly marriage. πŸ’–

  3. I’m glad things are coming together for you. I have to say, though, that I can’t quite relate. Julie and her mom kept telling me that we had to push the date out a ways, because planning a wedding is so complicated. I countered that there are people whose sole job is to answer their phones, book halls, set menus, schedule flowers, order invitations, etc. Guess who was right? MOI! Everything was settled in time to have made the date I originally suggested.

    Decisions. Take a lesson from acting. When you muff a line in a show, just keep moving. No one in the audience knows what SHOULD have happened, so it’s no big deal. Same with wedding decisions. No one at the ceremony or reception knows what all the alternatives might have been. They’ll just no they’re having a good time. Invitations? They get thrown away pretty quickly, so…

    Admittedly this is a GUY’s perspective, but we had a great wedding. Julie looked great. The food was superb, and my best man and I even wrote and recorded a special song just for Julie and set up his pro sound system at the hall just before the ceremony. Everything went off without a hitch and people were still talking about how great a reception it was even a year after.

    In the end, the best advice – for me – is make decisions quickly and stick with them, because it’s always possible to think of something different. At least, that’s what worked so well for us. 😊

  4. Caralyn, you are well on your way to the wedding. A few hiccups along the way are expected. Enjoy the process! Your marriage will start soon and this is where your efforts will bring the best results. Blessings!β€οΈπŸ€—

  5. https://julxrp.wordpress.com/2021/11/12/jon-linda-wedding-on-a-mountain/
    When my kid brother was getting married, they planned for a wedding in October. Yeah, October soon came. We had the venue planned, and the date. A week from the date, it suddenly dawned on the family that nothing was planned. I mean, literally nothing. And to top it off, they had no budget.. Literally no budget.
    As a family, we pooled together and made up a wedding to remember.
    I feel that we do a lot to focus on that day. And why not.. it should be a day to remember. After all, it is supposed to happen once in a lifetime.. at least that is the plan. But so often we put so much effort on the day, we forget that its the life you two build together after the wedding that is the most important.

  6. This did make me smile! It reminded me of my youngest sister’s wedding which was a big production (and costly affair). She drove us mad with all the details, she was her own wedding planner but she absolutely nailed it. So much so everyone said she should turn it into a business and offer her services to others.

  7. While the details are important, never forget what’s most important. You’re entering into a covenant with your husband. Everything else can go exactly as planned – or not. But the vow you make before the Father, Son and Holy Spirit is all you should concentrate on when the moment arrives. God bless you both.

  8. Caralyn,

    Did you choose your Mass readings yet? I know you asked for suggestions. Whether you use it or not, The Wedding Feast at Cana is one to read together. My daughter was married last June and our son (her brother) is a priest and officiated. In his homily, he said that before anyone else, our Blessed Mother saw that the couple needed help. She went to Jesus on their behalf before anyone asked her. She was looking out for them, as she looks out for us now.

    Just a thought for you and Steven. πŸ’•

  9. I planned my wedding in 7 months from proposal to vows, definitely no easy task! The best advice I got, the one thing that helped me not only survive the stress but enjoy the day, was this: Do everything in your power to make it happen the way you want up until the day before. But, decide that on the actual day, you will have joy no matter what! Nothing can be changed, everything is going to go alright anyway, and at the end of the day, you two will become one <3

  10. this post gave me ALL the feels!!! Love it! So excited for you! I hope you eventually share pics of the big day and I can’t wait to see your dress!!!!!! EEEEEEEKKKKK!!!

    • aw thank you Sierra!!! i appreciate your excitement with me! πŸ™‚ Hugs and love xox

  11. My hint to Stephen is probably too late to do him any good. My bride-to-be got me involved early in the process when we were doing this in 1989. The first place we went was a photographer. I was dizzy with choices (and sticker shock) when we left. I was only half kidding when I said “any photographer who can’t shoot a wedding in 24 pictures isn’t trying.” I suddenly found myself outside of the loop for most of the decisions after that. πŸ™‚

    Best wishes to both of you!

  12. Some very good advice for those planning a wedding in the future. It certainly is harder than it was 61 years ago when I got married!! My fiancee’ was in the army, stationed in Germany. I was in CA. He came home on Friday night. We had the rehearsal and rehearsal (groom’s) dinner Saturday night. Sunday afternoon we were married and two days later we headed off to Germany together. All the planning was done by my mom and me in January for a February 11 wedding. And it was perfect!! (Put “wedding” in the search bar on my site at http://www.janbeek.blog... I think I have a few pictures there.). God bless you and Steven and all 11 of your bridesmaids – and your mom! This is gonna be a wonderful, beautiful, blessed, memorable occasion. I know you’ll post photos for us. Thanks in advance!! <3

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