Notice of Marriage Shenanigans

So, can you tell me if you are related to your fianc√©?”

Yesterday The Bloke and I went to the neighbouring town to declare our Notice of Marriage.

The process is essentially there to legally declare our intention to marry within the next twelve months. However, as simple as this initially sounded, I soon discovered that it would be a little more complicated than telling someone and getting a certificate.

We live in a small town on the outskirts of Birmingham. We’re getting married at a venue in Birmingham and because neither of us have a religious faith we have opted for a registrar from Birmingham Register Office to officiate the ceremony instead of a vicar. Continue reading

Why Children are Not Invited to Our Wedding

 

Why children aren't allowed at our wedding

It’s six months until my wedding day and while I have a few things still on my list to tackle, the large things are now booked and organised. Most of it (despite some of the horror stories I have heard over the years from friends and articles I have read online) has been an exciting experience. However, one thing that I found difficult was the guest list.

Why?

Because children are not invited to our wedding, including my own niece.

The Bloke and I don’t have children of our own. I have a very small family – mum, two sisters, one sister’s long-term boyfriend, a brother-in-law and a niece, who will be 10 months old on the day of the wedding. The Bloke’s family is considerably larger, but don’t have young children – the youngest are older teenagers, so it wasn’t a family issue to consider. However, my friends have lots of them. Continue reading

A Hen Party in Bristol

I found myself on a train up North to visit the family on Monday evening after just returning home from a two-day hen party (Bachelorette) extravaganza. I had blisters on my feet, a burn on my thumb, I’d had about six hours sleep thanks to a very hangry cat this morning who woke me up at 6am for his breakfast (and I had six hours the night before) and the hangover that I could once shake off in 24 hours in my 20’s was still going strong.

I’m not a huge fan of hen parties, but this one went really well. Four of us, including the hen, trekked to Bristol, where we were joined by nine others throughout the morning. We had been given strict instructions that there was to be no cliche items in tow – penis-shaped objects, L plates, cheap netted veils etc – but as she said nothing about other silly items I took the opportunity to put together a ‘Hen Party Survival Kit,’ complete with Disney plasters, water, chocolate, safety pins etc. We managed to start drinking (and spilling) the wine by 11am, so by the time we arrived I was already feeling a little on the squiffy side.

The afternoon was spent watching Joseph and His Technicolour Dreamcoat – something that I know well through playing the songs in various musical activities but hadn’t actually seen. It was…ok. It wasn’t for the lack of talent – the actress playing the narrator was incredible, Joe McElderry did a good job in the lead role (despite reminding me of a younger Michael Ball) and the supporting cast were all talented in their own right, but it just wasn’t my thing. I had more fun joining in the children’s vocal parts in the songs at the end – something that I don’t think the child sitting in front of me appreciated as she kept turning round and glaring at me. We went for a drink, where I discovered a cocktail that tasted like cola cube sweets, then went back to the hotel and got changed. I decided to risk it and curl my hair (previous attempts to do this have left me looking like some sort of drunken Shirley Temple), and was feeling all smug when it actually worked… until I burned the crap out of my thumb.

Plonker.

Our meal had been booked and the food pre-ordered several months ago, but when we arrived we were told by our poor waiter, James, that there had been changes to the menu and the whole order ended up being taken again. The Maid of Honour had thoughtfully decorated the room and the banter started pretty much as soon as we walked in:

Hen: What do you do, James?
James: I’m a student.
Hen: Studying what?
James: Physics and Astro-Physics
Hen: So, Science then…

That pretty much set the tone for the meal. The guy deserved a medal and credit to him, he gave as good as he got. Considering he was only 19 years old, he dealt with the group of rowdy women brilliantly and ended up making what turned out to be a three-hour event a cracking experience, throughly deserving the monster tip we gave him at the end…

And then… onto the club. I’d made the stupid decision to wear heels but thankfully the Hen had organised a private room complete with wine, spirits and mixers, and I found a spot on a large comfortable couch. It was like my dream scenario – Disoranno and lemonade on tap, my favourite cheesy songs from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s, a bride-to-be who danced so much that we had to actually take it in turns to dance with her (depending on our music preferences) because none of us could keep up, and brilliant company. I sang, I danced, I talked utter nonsense and had a fantastic time.

Unfortunately, my feet didn’t, so the hobble back to the hotel was so painful that I looked like I’d had some sort of toilet-based accident, but it was totally worth it.

Her wedding is at the beginning of June, so it’s not long to go now. It feels like five minutes ago that she got engaged (Feb 2016) and if I know her as well as I think I do then it will be a wedding to remember!

Let’s hope that my feet recover before then…

You can also find me on Twitter and Tumblr @suzie81blog, and don’t forget to follow my Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/suzie81speaks, my Pinterest page http://www.pinterest.com/suzie81speaks and my Instagram page http://www.instagram.com/suzie81speaks

A TV Offer!

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I received a message via my Facebook page last week.

‘Have you got married yet.’

I didn’t recognise the name, so I simply responded with the fact that I hadn’t and that the wedding is in October. After a quick conversation it became apparent that the person messaging me worked for a TV production company that were creating a programme for a main channel here in the UK about different weddings. Turns out, she found out that I was getting married through my blog and we had a lovely chat about our current stages in our wedding planning, as she is getting married a few weeks before me. Continue reading

Self-Care, Honeymoon Plans and a Blog Update!

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If I’m being honest, I struggled after Christmas for a little while – The Black Dog and anxiety reared their ugly heads without any warning and I spent a little bit of time consciously focusing on self-care and busying myself with little projects to keep my mind occupied. I’ve become a little obsessed with the Hygge movement, albeit a little later than everyone else it seems, and it really helps. Thankfully, it slowly dissipated and by the time New Year arrived I was feeling a little better. Continue reading

How to Make a Beautiful Wedding Centrepiece Using Mason Jars

Wedding centrepiece cetnerpiece mason jarsFor the first few months after getting engaged, I threw myself into wedding planning. I’ve never been particularly into crafts, but I found myself maniacally scouring Pinterest for ideas, hoping to gain some inspiration for all sorts of things. In particular, I wanted to find different styles of centrepieces, with my criteria being that it had to be simple to make and cost effective. Eventually, I planned a theme and colour scheme, and from that I then amalgamated lots of different ideas to create something that was exactly what I was looking for. I showed The Bloke what I had come up with, and thankfully he liked them as much as I did.

You will need: Continue reading

Crepes, Apple and a Fayre or Two

I’ve had a really nice few days.

I love this time of year – this is when I start secretly looking forward to the coming events of the next few months: The Bloke, my mum, The Bloke’s sister and I all have birthdays, the Frankfurt Market comes back to the city and I start getting my Christmas presents together. Normally I’m a lot more organised than I have been this year, but the numerous blog activities and various employment opportunities that have appeared since January have meant that my time is less than it was before, albeit much more fun! And (although I’m not going to discuss most of it yet on here), the next twelve months will mean huge changes (all for the better) for me and my family (no, I’m not pregnant, nor am I planning to be, before any of you get excited!).

Continue reading

The Wedding Planning Begins…

WeddingActually, if I’m being honest, that’s a complete fabrication. The Bloke and I got engaged in May (after an unbelievable proposal overlooking a 13th Century Scottish castle, and yes, I’m never going to get bored of saying that), and by June I had pretty much decided on what was going to happen on the big day. The Bloke laughed at my initial proclamation that I wasn’t going to do anything until the summer and he was right to do so – I started thinking of ideas the very next day.

Now, when I say ‘I,’ I of course mean ‘we,’ but with me having more free time than The Bloke does I’ve been able to immerse myself in Pinterest for ideas and fill out the necessary paperwork. He’s got used to coming home only to be greeted by my phone being shoved in his face with the question “Now, what do you think of this?” and to his credit he has given me his honest opinion and offered his own suggestions along the way.

I’ve never wanted a big, fancy wedding. I’ve been to a number of them, all which were fabulous and unique with loads of fantastic things to do, but as cliche as it sounds I’ve always liked the idea of a small ceremony and a lack of pomp and circumstance. We get married, we eat, then we get our dancing shoes on and have a great time with people that mean the most to us. I am determined that The Bloke and I get the chance to spend the day together, as one of the biggest regrets that my family and friends say they have about their own weddings is that they were so concerned about everyone else having a good time that they forgot to enjoy it themselves. Continue reading

Bridezilla

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I’m not going to even start looking at anything until the summer holidays.’

This was what I said about a week ago when one of my friends asked me whether The Bloke and I had set a date.

What a load of nonsense – if I could go back and slap myself, I would. I blame Pinterest – I created a secret board five days ago when I had a sleepless night and I’ve already got about 150 pins of ideas that I like.

It’s only been eight days since The Bloke popped the question, and I’ve got the whole thing planned. For me, I’ve always wanted a small, inexpensive wedding day, with the important part being the ceremony itself, followed by an amazing honeymoon to remember, which we know we can ask for help with from our guests instead of setting up a registry. I’m not one of those brides who has dreamed of walking down the aisle in a designer gown, particularly when it’s only going to be worn once and then shoved in a box in the wardrobe. I’m not bothered about tradition or pomp and circumstance. It’s about us.

Despite this, I know where and when it will happen (I’ve already spoken to the venue to check that they are available and will cater for what we want) the dress I’ll be wearing, invitations, colour scheme, flowers, bridesmaids dresses (I’ve asked my sisters – which is amazing because this is not something I would have done two years ago), favors, cake… Money is going to be tight, and we’re paying for it ourselves, so I’ve already found ways to save on the cost by mentally calling in some favours with some creative and crafty friends. Continue reading

The Bloke Proposed Today…

I had a very different post planned for today. I’m in Scotland with The Bloke for the week, and I spent some time last night preparing a post that showed all the different photographs I took on the nine hour drive it took to get here (it’s a lot more interesting than it sounds, I promise). It was sitting in my drafts folder, ready for me to press publish the next day.

However, The Bloke and I visited Dunnotar Castle this morning. It was an absolutely glorious day, and I sat on the cliff top opposite while he adopted his inner David Bailey and went around taking pictures of everything. It had rained the night before, so the grass was still a bit wet and I had borrowed The Bloke’s spare t-shirt to sit on while I was waiting for him to finish. It was a truly spectacular view, and he had put his bags and camera paraphernalia next to me to look after. Continue reading