8 Months to Go! Wedding Planning Update

8 Months to Go! Wedding Planning Update

Since I am officially getting married THIS YEAR (it’s been almost 2 years since I’ve been able to say that haha) I thought I’d do some monthly planning updates. Starting with 8 months to go!

If you’ve been keeping up with my planning posts, you’ll know that most of the big stuff has been booked. But these next 8 months are still going to be filled with plenty of planning mayhem! Hopefully, if you’re getting married too, these posts will also be helpful!

Planning Recap

Just a quick recap for anyone new to the blog! We’re getting married at our local church, and then having the reception at my parents’ house. The barn is currently being renovated (see instagram highlights!) which is stressful to say the least!

I’ve got a maid of honour and two other bridesmaids. Euan has a best man, 2 ushers and a musher (mini-usher – my brother who will be 13). We also have two flower girls and two page boys as well!

We have sorted all the suppliers, apart from live music for the reception. Save the dates have gone out to friends but we haven’t sent the formal invites yet. I have bought my wedding dress (yay!) and we sorted the bridesmaid dresses last month (phew!).

I’ll also link to some other wedding planning blog posts at the end of this one so you can catch-up!

8 months to go wedding planning update lila bailey blog

8 Months to Go – On the Agenda this Month

To keep things as stress-free as possible, I’m focussing on one thing each month. This month is all about the boys’ outfits. We’ve chosen Euan’s kilt tartan, but we need to send the company his measurements, and the measurements of his best man & brother in law.

My brothers (his other usher and the musher) will be in tailcoats which we also still need to source, as will our youngest page boy. If you follow on Instagram stories you’ll know that I visited Mos Bros the other day. I did find a suit that I liked, but to be honest they’re incredibly expensive and I wasn’t in love with it. So, my search isn’t quite over just yet.

I also want to get our mini-moon to Venice booked this month (eek!). We booked our honeymoon to Mauritius in October, so at least that is sorted!

8 months to go wedding planning update lila bailey blog

Other things we’ve got to sort…

  • Finalising the flowers
  • Live music for the reception
  • Buying our wedding rings
  • Venue signs & decor
  • Wedding favours
  • Sending out the invites!
  • Sorting the pre-wedding meal and post-wedding brunch
  • Choosing our table wines

And I’m sure plenty else!

Barn Update…

With 8 months to go, and the barn still not being finished, my stress levels are high. (I’m sure you can imagine!). We visited the barn today and it is actually coming along beautifully. The men are working in there every day now and a lot has been done even since Christmas. So it’s looking hopeful! Keep checking in with my Insta stories too as I’m sure I’ll be posting plenty on there.

the venue wedding planning update blog post lila bailey blog
The barn this time last year – it has dramatically improved since this picture!!

Previous Planning Posts…

If you’re new to the blog, here are my previous planning posts. Starting from when we first got engaged in 2018!

Being Engaged

Wedding Dress Shopping Part 1

Wedding Dress Shopping Part 2

Local Wedding Dress Shopping

A Year of Engagement

The Venue

Our Suppliers

The Bridal Party

Wedding Dress

The Guest List

Engagement Shoot!

1 Year to go!

I’d also recommend having a read of my ‘All just for One Day‘ post, and have a browse of my Wedding Tips & Advice category too!

New Year, New Routine – Looking ahead at 2020

New Year, New Routine – Looking ahead at 2020

Happy January lovely people! 2020 is a really big year for me, what with a wedding and all!! So I wanted to focus on putting some changes in place to ensure I’m happy & healthy in 2020. New year, new routine is a common thing amongst us humans, but it’s not always easy to stick to.

Back in November I mentioned on my Instagram stories that I wanted to start putting plans in place for the new year, to give myself time to adjust. New routines don’t happen overnight, and I didn’t want to start a fresh in the new year, I wanted to go into the new year having already started.

Well, I’m not one to blow my own trumpet but what a beyond brilliant idea that was. Honestly, it’s the best decision I made in 2019! Instead of putting pressure on myself with the whole new year, new routine business, I’m simply carrying on with what I started a couple of months ago. Which has meant I’ve also got more headspace to focus on some other goals for the new year…

New Year, New Routine – The Low Down

So this routine of mine; what am I actually talking about? Mainly it’s my morning routine, but I guess a few ‘life’ adjustments too. The main aim is to keep me feeling my best and keep my head in a good place. As well as increasing motivation & productivity!

Most days (usually week days) I will get up at 6.30am, and go straight downstairs to wash my face. This not only wakes me up but also stops me from looking at my phone first thing and wasting 10 minutes lying in bed.

Next up I do a very short workout. Usually nothing more that 15 minutes, but often a lot less. The type of workout I do varies, but I like to focus on toning exercises that will put my mind & body in a good place to tackle the day ahead. *Note* this is not a weight-loss thing. Too often exercise is linked with wanting to lose weight (for obvious reasons). But, what we forget is we should be exercising to feel good and keep our bodies moving as much as anything else!

Then it’s time for my shiny new skincare routine (more on that later). I find that if I get my face ready at this time in the morning, it’s not a chore. I’m doing it to look after my skin, rather than because I’m getting ready to go out. If that makes sense… Whilst I’m getting my face ready, I’ve been listening to a number of motivational/educational podcasts. They’re amazing and I would highly recommend fitting some into your day wherever you can!

I then will sit down for 30 mins or so and do some work. Whether that’s blog writing, content planning, replying to messages/emails, goal setting… It varies each day! Having an extra 30 mins or so is super helpful and really sets you up for the day.

At this point, Euan will usually emerge and it’s time for breakfast & getting on with whatever lies ahead for that day!

Other Day-to-Day Changes

A few other bits I’ve been slotting in are:

  • Evening yoga, anywhere between 20-40 minutes depending on the day I’ve had. I won’t do this every evening, but it really helps me to unwind if I’ve had a particularly stressful/bad day.
  • Weekly meal planning, 3 meals a day. This is a relatively new change but one I’m really hoping to stick to. Over the past couple of weeks I’ve rediscovered my love for cooking, and I’m determined that it’s here to stay!
  • Just doing it! Finding excuses to not do something is so easy. Staying in bed past your alarm is easy. Not going for a run is easy. Not getting ahead of tomorrow’s workload is easy. But I am sick to death of easy. Instead, I have been making a conscious effort to fight through those feelings of ‘I’ll do it later/tomorrow’ and Just.Getting.On.With.It!

2020 Goals

As this post is already long enough, I’ll chat through some of my 2020 goals in another post. I’ve got lots of content planned for January & already some of February, so make sure you’re checking in regularly. And don’t forget, you can also subscribe!

1 Year to Go! Planning Update

1 Year to Go! Planning Update

Here we are, 1 year to go until the wedding! I actually cannot believe how quickly time has flown since that magical morning on Dartmoor in April last year.

I’m feeling pretty bloomin’ buzzed for the wedding now. And I know I’ve done plenty of planning updates, but I thought I’d do a little ‘1 year to go’ overview.

1 year to go wedding planning update lila bailey blog

Engaged to 1 year to go – What has changed?

Honestly? Almost nothing! I guess I’ve always kind of known what I wanted for my wedding. But, naturally, there have been one or two small changes…

You might remember from one of my previous posts that when we first got engaged we initially wanted to hire a marquee and have an unlimited amount of guests… Well, this never truly sat right with me. We were always going to use the barn for our drinks reception, and move to the marquee for the meal & evening reception (mainly due to the barn’s capacity, or lack of). Even that didn’t feel like ‘us’ though, so in the end we decided to just hold the whole wedding (minus the service, obvs) in the barn. It’s meant that we’ve had to be stricter with our guest numbers, but honestly that has been a blessing in disguise.

1 year to go wedding planning update lila bailey blog

Another change was initially wanting to go on honeymoon the day after our wedding, but we found this left us with relatively limited options for where we could go. And also meant we may not be able to take quite as much time off from work as we’d like to. So instead we’ve decided to go on a ‘mini-moon’ the day after our wedding, go back to work for a couple of weeks, and then go on honeymoon (probably the first week in October).

Other than those two things, everything else is pretty much the same! One of the beauties of having a longer engagement has meant we’ve had more time to make our decisions, and therefore haven’t made any that we’ve come to regret.

12 months on the clock… What are my main worries?

With now only 1 year to go, my biggest worry is of course that the barn is not finished. But, it is getting there and mostly it’s just cosmetic jobs to do now (rather than structural) which won’t take nearly as long as the rest of it has done (finger crossed, anyway….!).

The most stressful thing on my planning agenda recently has been sorting the hire of items for the catering & tables etc. But I’m almost there with it now and I will feel a whole lot better when it’s done! Have any of you needed to hire items for your wedding? It’s definitely a tick in the ol’ hire-a-planner box, if that’s something you are deliberating over.

1 year to go wedding planning update lila bailey blog

My third and final worry is the outfits for the bridal party (bridesmaids, ushers, littlies). We won’t be able to sort the bridesmaid dresses until December time (one of my bridesmaids is away until then), but I had a good look through some of the new bridesmaid collections at Harrogate this week and found some I loved. Hopefully the girls will be able to make a trip down in December and we can get bridesmaid dresses ticked off this list!

Then it’s the suits & kilts to worry about… but we’re getting there!

In Conclusion…

Making sure the wedding hasn’t consumed my life has been a big thing for me, and I’m pleasantly surprised about how little I think about it day-to-day. Mostly when I do think about it, it’s just excitement for the day itself! Nothing worse than being one of those brides who can think/talk about nothing else… Something to watch out for if you’re engaged yourself!

Whilst there are still bits to do, I’m mostly just going to enjoy this next year as much as possible. I’ve absolutely loved being engaged – it is truly the most magical time, isn’t it? Don’t get me wrong, I am so excited for the wedding, but I’m definitely going to make the most of my last year as a fiancĂ©e!

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Professional images by Freckle Photography

Early to Mid Twenties… What no-one told you

Early to Mid Twenties… What no-one told you

So I thought I’d write a little more personal post today, and explain what’s been going on in my world recently… Navigating the early to mid twenties is something I’ve found surprisingly difficult. Did anyone else just assume that everything got easier once you were officially an adult? Because I definitely did, and I was definitely wrong. It’s not been an overly easy time and I hope this post might help others who could be going through the same thing.

24 is here, and I can only describe the earlier part of this year as a bit of a quater-life-crisis. We all know about the mid-life crisis, but no-one really talks about the earlier years: namely your early to mid twenties. Perhaps it’s just a part of growing into adulthood, and something everyone goes through. But anyway, it’s nice to shed a bit of light on the subject nonetheless. For a while I was really struggling with the whole topic of ‘the future’. I know where I want to get to, but how on earth am I going to achieve it? How do I get from here to there? Will I ever make it? You get the idea… And part of that meant falling out of love with most things, especially in a work sense. I wondered about a total career change numerous times, but mostly I just wanted to run away to a remote cabin by the lake (with Euan, obvs) and hide away from the world.

Maybe I should get into travel blogging… (jokes, although how fun would that be!).

I’ve not been amazing at talking about it either, not even to Euan. Which I think is mostly down to the fact I can’t actually put it into words, or certainly not whole sentences. I guess overwhelmed is probably the most accurate way of describing it, but it goes a whole lot deeper than that. Also, I’m very good at beating myself up over the tiniest thing. So in a slightly more fragile state than normal you can but guess how unhelpful that trait has been…

Basically – in short – I spent a good few months feeling like a total failure, for no reason other than it’s what I kept telling myself. (Yes, Euan, I did just manage to admit that I’m my worst enemy). I knew deep down that I was actually doing fine and actually in a really good place. But despite knowing that, the doubt still came and still felt totally overwhelming when it did. I would get stuck in a place which I found incredibly hard to pull myself out of. A lot of crying and soooo much self-doubt. It makes you want to give up everything and start over again, and feels like you’ve ruined your life somehow. When I managed to get out of one of these moods, I’d look back and think how utterly ridiculous it was to have thought all of those things. But that somehow doesn’t seem to make it any easier at the time.

I guess it’s largely to do with the fact that the decisions I make now really are starting to shape and impact my future and the direction I take my life in. And I think this is pretty common for people in their ‘early to mid twenties’, and probably beyond too. The older you get, the harder it is to have freedom in a lot of ways. If I want to make something of my life, if I want to have a thriving future, I have to work towards that now. And in my moments of despair it often felt like I wasn’t achieving that and so need to just give up.

It’s not something that’s always easy to talk about, but the few times I have had conversations about it I’ve felt sooooo much better afterwards. I’d be surprised if there’s a single person on this planet who didn’t spend large portions of their 20s feeling like this. Which I found to be a huge comfort. You’re not weird. You’re not a failure. You’re not destined for disaster. In actual fact, you’re just human.

Some Top Tips

To be completely honest, I don’t think there’s any ‘quick fix’ for something like this. But if you’re navigating your early to mid twenties (or any age for that matter!) and feel like you’re having a bit of a quarter-life-crisis, here are a couple of tips that have helped me:

  • Firstly, something that really really helped me was weirdly enough a personality test. I actually took it just to calm myself down, but when I got the results and they described my personality to a T it made me realise that I am who I am and the reason I think/behave in certain ways is all part of my personality. Not because I’m broken or weird, but because that’s just who I am. Even just answering the questions properly & honestly opened my eyes to a lot about myself. It probably won’t work for everyone, but here is the link if you fancy giving it a go.
  • Talk about it. It’s so easy to pretend everything is fine, especially when other people around you assume that everything is fine. But keeping it all to yourself is detrimental. Trust me!
  • Don’t compare your life or achievements to others. Whether that’s your friends or – like me – people (‘proper’ adults) who have made it already, it’s just not healthy and makes everything worse. Everyone is walking down their own path, and there is no right or wrong way to do life. So just do you!
  • And closely linked with the above, don’t keeping focussing on what you think you should be doing. Like I said, there’s no right or wrong way to do life so there’s no should or shouldn’t either. (Well, to a point. I mean you shouldn’t break the law for example…).
  • Lastly, figure out what you want and keep going. Let your mind wander, put yourself out there, and invest in yourself if you need to. Even on the bad days, keep pushing and don’t give up because if you stay on the right path and are determined, you’ll get to where you want to go.

I hope that if you’re having a hard time, this post has helped a bit. Talking about it has definitely helped the process for me, just to get my head around it for the most part. And if you’re going through something similar and want to talk, I’m just on the other end of email or Instagram for a chat! And this isn’t necessarily felt by people in their ‘early to mid twenties’, it just so happens that it is the most common time for a quarter-life crisis, and it’s also the age category I fall in.

And for something a little lighter, take a look at my last post.

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Bridesmaid Dress Shopping – Top Tips #2

Bridesmaid Dress Shopping – Top Tips #2

In my last post, I wrote about my top tips for wedding dress shopping. Today it’s all about bridesmaid dress shopping!

If you keep up with my Instagram, you’ll have seen that in June I met up with my 3 best gals to go bridesmaid dress shopping in London. And although we haven’t quite nailed the bridesmaid dresses yet, it was such a wonderful day (which I can’t wait to do all over again!).

However, it’s not just about giggles and bubbles (I mean, it’s mostly about that, but I suppose finding dresses for the bridesmaids is sort of important too…). And going in with a rough plan, and some handy tops tips, can’t go amiss!

Bridesmaid Dress Shopping Top Tips

So here are a few top tips to get you started…

  • Before you go, figure out your criteria. Do you want long or short dresses? Have you got a very specific colour in mind? Are you happy to mix & match styles and/or colours? The most important thing – in my opinion – is that your bridesmaids feel comfortable with what they’re wearing, but you also have to remember that these are the dresses the girls are going to be wearing on your wedding day. If you figure out roughly what you want the dresses to look like then it gives your girls and the shop stylists a criteria to work from.
  • Be flexible. Having just said you need to figure out what you want… you also have to be flexible (figured!). It’s no good demanding everyone wears something super specific that they clearly hate. And equally, if you are so set on a particular dress/style you might really struggle to find one that matches exactly what you’re looking for. Basically, by not being flexible you’re making hard work for yourself!

  • Consider mix & match options. Whether that’s mix & match colours, necklines, shapes, or general styles, sometimes letting your bridesmaids each choose a dress they’re happy with is the best solution! A huge number of bridesmaid dress companies now create their collections with this exact idea in mind. Meaning the different dresses are designed to work together as a collection, rather than just multiples of one dress.
bridesmaid dress shopping top tips lila bailey blog mix & match bridesmaids
  • Have fun! The most important thing is – as always – to enjoy your appointments. I’ve said countless times before that your engagement period/wedding planning time should be filled with fun & excitement, and be all about making memories. Don’t get stressed, it’s just not worth it (take it from me!). And how many times will you be dress shopping, prosecco in hand, with your best gals all together? Exactly… Make the most of it whilst you can!

Some Bridesmaid Dress Brand Recommendations

Maids to Measure

Rewritten Bridesmaids

Dessy Group

Hayley Paige Bridesmaids

Two Birds