Once you find it, you want to celebrate it in all its forms! Listening to all the best love songs, watching romantic movies, and snuggling with your partner, are just a few of the most common ways to celebrate love. When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with that person, then there is an entirely new thing to celebrate: getting married!
Once the engagement party is over (if you have one) it seems like the excitement just keeps building and has nowhere to go; how socially acceptable is it to post a new picture of the ring every two days??
If you're newly engaged and looking for ways to celebrate, without driving your friends and family crazy, here are a few slightly more discreet ways to enjoy the moment, and get prepped for the stressful (but fun) days ahead.
1. Deck yourself out with "Future Mrs." and "Bride to Be" swag!
Etsy is a treasure trove of personalizable and cutesy wedding planning gear at good prices. Planning to lose some weight before the big day? Check out this sweating for the wedding gear. Are you a coffee-a-holic? Maybe this tumbler is more your style!
2. Follow ALL the wedding accounts on social media (If you don't already).
The Knot is only the beginning. Go big or go home! Some of my personal favorites are @SouthernWeddings and @AllureBridals on Instagram. Don't forget Facebook though, especially those Facebook groups; they are a treasure trove of excited fellow to-be-weds.
3. PINTEREST. Need I say more?
Start your Pinterest board, if you don't already have one (where have you BEEN?!). If you already have a future wedding board, like many of us, start a new one to save all of your favorite things to, and start narrowing down the things you like most.
4. Hunt down your local wedding expos and mark your calendar!
Wedding expos are a fun and valuable opportunity to get to know the vendors in your area, get some ideas, and win free stuff! Don't assume that you have to book with people that you see at the expos though... many times they are some of the more expensive vendors who know that they can charge a fortune for anything marked "wedding."
5. Get those wedding magazines.
Pro-tip: Pinterest can only do so much. Local magazines (Like The Knot Georgia, Southern Weddings, Martha Stewart Weddings, etc.) are much more helpful than big-time magazines like The Knot Lookbook, Bridal Guide, etc.
6. Get your wedding planning binder ready!
Whether you decide to set up your own or buy one already fully stocked, this is a must. It makes you feel already and organized for the stressful planning days to come.
7. Create a separate email account!
You'll get so much email from vendors, wedding websites, the stores you've registered with, and so on, you'll go crazy looking for important correspondences in your regular email folder. Or worse, lose important bank/school/work emails in the mix of wedding mail.
Avoid that by setting up a super cute janeandjohnwed@gmail account! You're going to be glad you did. Pro-tip: also sign up for websites like Michael's and Hobby Lobby's mailing lists, so you get coupon codes and sale notifications. This is a lifesaver if you're a DIY bride.
8. Find or create am "I'm getting married!!!!" playlist.
Listen to it until the excitement wears off, and then listen to it when you're knee-deep in wedding planning and trying to remember what excitement feels like. It's a win-win!
9. Dig out the wedding movies.
Leading up to the big day, you're going to need and want lots of time with your best friends (male or female), who are going to be standing beside you as you make your vows.
Wedding movies are a great way to laugh/cry/celebrate this time. With the guy friends, Wedding Crashers might be a good choice. With the girls, try Bridesmaids or Revenge of the Bridesmaids. With Mom, opt for something sweeter, like The Wedding Planner, Father of the Bride, or Made of Honor. With your partner, carve out some time for something steamy, like the latest Fifty Shades (which features their wedding, too!).
10. Stay up-to-date and mark your calendar to watch the nuptials of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry on May 19th.
Love or hate Ms. Markle, a royal wedding is always a spectacle, and--though nothing can compare to Will and Kate--it's sure to be all the inspiration you need for a fairytale affair.
11. Have an engagement photo shoot!
You don't have to fork over your much-needed savings for a fancy photo shoot, but taking pictures with your beloved (and printing them out to hang at your desk) is a wonderful way to marvel in your love.
You can do this with a pro for a couple hundred dollars, or you can break out the selfie stick and ask your BFF to play photographer with you and your honey for an afternoon. Dress up and don't overthink it--trust me when I say that a few good candids are far better than some of the best-posed stills.
This is an exciting time, so don't let anyone ruin that for you! But, it's totally respectable if you want to be considerate of your friends and family and keep some of the supposedly sickening sappy chatter to a minimum, so feel free to go all out in your own way.