101 Days & The Day After

June 15, 2010  |  In Her Shoes

Photo by Courtney Dellafiora

We are 101 days away from the big day. Tyler and I have been thinking more about life after the wedding this week than the actual wedding. (Which I highly recommend to all couples!)

Saturday we went apartment hunting for the third time and finally found THE ONE! While we toured the facility Tyler whispered to me,

“If that pond is stocked with fish, I wanna live here.” About half a second later, the girl said “And the pond is stocked with bass, brim…”

After we looked at the apartment, Tyler and I hopped back on the back of the golf cart and he just kept looking at me. I said “What?” He just kept looking and got in the car and said “I really wanna live there!”

We could paint the walls so I was more than happy, location is perfect and price was right and I was just excited that he was excited. Girls, I am guessing other guys are like Tyler and don’t exactly jump at the chance to spend their day off schlepping around apartment complexes.

Besides planning a wedding, the engagement period is a time to ease into joint decision making. What color tux will the guys wear turns into where will will come home to every day? Who’s gonna do the dishes? How much will we save each month?

As we make more and more decisions about our future together and now seeing where our first home together will be, this week I’m thinking more about the day after  (while still trying to tackle my wedding to-do list!)

In our culture, I don’t think enough emphasis is always placed on preparing us for the day after. Here are a few tips:

1. Right when Tyler and I got engaged we tried to figure out our budget. We’re not math nerds, we just both own our own businesses and haven’t had to worry about a steady income. We decided how much we would each bring in and then created a budget for our monthly expenses. Then we made a decision that will help start us off on the right foot. We created a joint account and decided that every month until the wedding we would each put away $250 a month into it. This means by the time we’re married, we will have an EXTRA $3,000 in the bank.

2. Figure out your wedding expenses realistically. If you are paying for your own wedding, it is so important to start your marriage off in the black. I have brides all the time tell me how much they can spend on their wedding. If it’s super high, I don’t say “Let’s head to Vera Wang!” I tell them I think they can do it for less. I’m going to get on my soapbox for a second: Wedding planners have the rep of being a big expense that brides think they can do without. The question is “Why would you want to?” If a wedding planner is really good at their job, they can save you the amount of money you paid to have them WHILE saving you time AND stress. I meet people all the time who I may share a tip or trick we’re using to save money for a current wedding and they always say they could have saved a ton of money if they had known that. Stepping off my soapbox. : )

Brides and grooms, even if your parents are paying for the wedding, you still have things you’re responsible for: the honeymoon, bridal party gifts, etc. I have been in 5 weddings and know that although it is always an honor, it is still a commitment and sometime sacrifice to be a part of it. I wanted to make sure I planned ahead for their gifts so I could spend a good amount on them.

3. Fill your new home. I mentioned in an earlier post, that Tyler and I need pretty much every piece of furniture imaginable. So what did we do? Created a list and budget. Knowing how much we want to spend keeps me from perusing the West Elm and Pottery Barn catalogs for a sofa.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. Ladies, let us know your tips!

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