Groom’s guide to getting hitched
– Propose ” If, by some miracle, you’re reading this guide but haven’t actually proposed yet, now’s the time. Buy a ring and practice getting down on one knee.
– Tell your folks ” This is the moment they’ve been waiting for since you left home. Assuming, of course, that they like her. If not, it’s high time to convince them of her charms.
– Talk location ” Discuss where exactly you’d like the ceremony and reception to take place. Here in the Rockies, we’re spoiled for choice with many great places to tie the knot, so there’s no excuse for not finding a truly memorable setting.
– Talk money ” Discussing who’ll pay for the wedding is important and it’s better to do it sooner rather than later. All those who will contribute toward the cost should be consulted. Just like the extension you added to your house, the actual cost of your wedding is likely to exceed even a generous estimate. Be honest about your expectations and be prepared to be flexible.
– Go visit the officiant ” In case you weren’t sure, the officiant is the person who will do the actual marrying. Whatever plans you may have for your wedding, you’ll need to get them approved by the officiant. He or she may also be able to offer prenuptial counseling, which will give you a chance to discuss anything about the wedding that’s on your mind.
– Begin writing the guest list ” Start off by writing down everyone you’d like to invite, and combine this list with one made by your fiancee. Chances are you’ll need to prune the list once you have a clear idea of your wedding plans. This is a good time to begin thinking about who should sit with whom, and how to keep any feuding guests apart.
– Make decisions about gifts ” Making a list of what gifts you’d like is a good plan if you don’t want to be saddled with an ugly dinner service for the rest of your life. If you’d prefer to nominate a charity for your guests to donate to, spend time with your fiancee deciding which charities you’d most like to sponsor.
– Choose your best man ” The best man must be someone you can trust to come up with the goods on the big day. If anything goes wrong, it’ll be his responsibility to save the day. Ideally, he’ll also be a fine speaker and able to mingle effortlessly with the dullest of guests.
– Find out about catering, photographers and all the rest ” Yes, it’s a chore, but it’s one you should do your fair share of. Imagine you’re choosing a new flat-screen TV: You want reviews, testimonials, in-depth info and anything else that’ll help you make a good decision. Be wary of leaning too heavily on family and friends for catering; you don’t want them to remember your wedding as a huge logistical headache.
– Talk about your honeymoon ” With any luck you’ll be able to think of a place that you’re both itching to visit. If you can’t come up with the perfect place, try thinking about your interests. Both into sky-diving? Take a trip to your local travel agent and see what location they recommend for high-altitude thrill-seekers.
– Think about what you’re going to wear ” This is quite a big deal as all the guys in your wedding party will need the same garb. Once you know what you want to wear (or, more likely, what your fiancee wants you to wear) let everyone know which store to go to and what to ask for.
– Go shopping for wedding rings ” It’ll probably take a while so best to start early.
– Get dancing lessons ” When you’re standing on the dance floor and there are 137 people watching you, suddenly it’ll seem like a good idea. Your fiancee will love you for it.
– Think about music ” If you plan on singing ‘The Ace of Spades’ at your wedding, it’s probably a good idea to OK this with your fiancee first. Remember that as well as a DJ or band, you could compose the entire playlist on your iPod.
– Write your vows ” You already know all the things you want to say, this is just about finding the right way to say it.
– Get a marriage license ” Contact your county clerk to find out what paperwork you’ll need to provide. Be sure to do this well ahead of time as there’s often a mandatory waiting period between being issued the license and getting married. Learn about all the details at http://www.usmarriagelaws.com.
– Make sure things are going to plan ” Is all the food and drink organized? Is the band booked? Have the hybernating bears been persuaded to vacate the wedding chapel yet?
– Stay calm ” Even if yoga, meditation and aroma-therapy aren’t really your thing, you’ll need to stay composed so try to allow some time for yourself.
– Greet all the guests ” In order to do this well, you pretty much need to know everyone’s name. So spend some time going through the guest list before hand.
– If asked a question, answer “I do.”
– Do the first dance ” Now the value of the dance classes becomes obvious. Didn’t get around to that? Never mind, just pretend like you’re having a good time and hopefully you’ll survive.
– Make a toast ” Be sure to thank everyone who helped organize the day. Having already said your vows during the ceremony, this part should be a cinch.
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