Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Wedding Checklist

It seems that wedding planning involves lots of checklists. This can be a good or a bad thing. For me, it's a good thing.

I'm a total type-A personality (it's actually pretty bad. MJ isn't allowed to do the dishes or the laundry because I want both to be done a certain way, and I think it's better that I just stay on top of these chores myself instead of getting frustrated with MJ does it "wrong," which just means that he didn't do things the way that I want them done. I told you.) Accountants generally feel at home with checklists and crossing of to-dos for a major project. So I'm right at home. The problem that I have is that I'm finding that my time is growing smaller and I haven't been checking off any of my to-dos. :(

Right after MJ and a I were engaged my MOH bought me this book: The Knot's Book of Wedding Lists. (She loves doing lists too but she's just not as neurotic as I am. :) ) Right away I started going through the chapters on reception and ceremony sites. I started checking things off and making notes in the book and emailing our site coordinators and asking them questions that were in the book. I was a lot of help!

Then when I started my wedding planner (the crazy binder that I carry around with me and look at almost daily, it's chocked full of magazine tear-outs, etc.) there were more checklists about my planning timeline. When I first started with my timeline checklist there were items that I knew I was behind in but I thought I would get them done quickly so I wouldn't fall behind. However, now that I'm revisiting my timeline checklist I'm faced with the realization that I am behind. :(

Here is my wedding timeline checklist and what I've accomplished and what I'm waiting for:

9 - 12 months before:

  • Announce Engagement - umm...I think the important folks know via word of mouth
  • Determine Wedding Style - Classic, elegant
  • Set the Date - Done! May 29, 2010
  • Determine your budget - $25,000 - $30,000 (MJ and I are paying for it ourselves)
  • Create the inital guest list - Around 90 or so...
  • Research & reserve ceremony site - Booked the Carmel Mission
  • Research & reserve ceremony officiant - Booked Bishop Garcia
  • Research & reserve reception site - Booked the La Playa Hotel
  • Select your wedding party attendants - half way there, I still have one friend to ask...
  • Shop for and order our wedding gown - haven't started yet, yikes!
6 - 9 Months Before:
  • Choose your colors - Champagne, pink & chocolate
  • Select bridal party dresses, shoes & accessories
  • Apply for or renew passports/visas as needed - MJ needs to renew his, I have mine!
  • Research & select the essentials:
  • Florist
  • Photographer - Jen Slot Photography
  • DJ/band for reception
  • Baker - La Playa Hotel
  • Caterer - La Playa Hotel
4- 6 Months Before:
  • Finalize guest list
  • Select, print or order your invitations and other stationary - I won these!
  • Mail Save the date cards
  • Select/purchase/reserve attire for groom, attendants, etc.
  • Plan rehearsal dinner
  • Meet with essential people
  • Florist
  • Photographer
  • DJ/band
  • Baker
  • Caterer
  • Officiant
  • Shop for and order rings
  • Plan the honeymoon - Going to France & Italy, but nothing is booked yet...
  • Arrange hotel and/or lodging accomodations for wedding night and out-of-town guests
  • Book transportaiton for wedding day
  • Register for gifts - Done! Registered through Macys and Crate & Barrel
  • Obtain a marriage license
2 - 4 Months Before
  • Assemble and address the invitations
  • Buy undergarments and shoes for your dress fitting
  • Purchase gifts for the wedding party and others as appropriate
  • Send out wedding newsletter for out of town guests
  • Attend showers, bachelorette party, etc. Don't forget hostess gifts!!
  • Finalize menu items with caterer
  • Order/make favors
  • Finalize music for reception and ceremony
  • Schedule appointments or dress fittings
  • Schedule appointments for nails, hair, makeup, etc.
4 - 6 Weeks Before:

  • Mail invitiations
  • Select readings for the ceremony
  • Meet with officiant
  • Purchase gift for the groom/bride
  • Create, print and assemble your wedding programs
  • Pick up wedding rings and make sure they are properly insured
  • Send out invitations for the rehearsal dinner
  • Start preparing a seating chart for the reception
  • Purchase accessories such as guest book, ring bearer pillow, toasting glasses, etc.
  • Make sure to all transportation details are coordinated and finalized
  • Finalize details with all of your service providers
  • Attend a test run for hair and makeup
2 -6 Weeks Before:
  • Contact guests who haven't responded
  • Confirm ceremony details with officiant
  • Finalize rehearsal dinner plans
  • Finalize head count with caterer and figure our table layout and seating
  • Complete menu cards, place cards, escort cards, table numbers, etc.
  • Arrange final fittings for wedding gown, bridesmaids dresses
  • Confirm honeymoon plans, tickets, reservations
  • Provide attendants with list of duties
Final Week
  • Pack for wedding night
  • Pack for honeymoon - Don't forget your passport!!
  • Pick up and properly store bride/groom attire
Rehearsal Day
  • Deliver favors, decorations and guest book to ceremony and reception locations
  • Provide each member of your wedding party with a detailed schedule of events for wedding day
  • Review ceremony seating with ushers
  • Hand out payments to select vendors
And that's just the checklist from my wedding binder. Each source seems to have more and more to-dos.

I'm feeling behind, and I'm worried that it's going to snowball and I'm going to be one of those brides that you see on Whose Wedding is it Anyway that has to hire a planner 3 weeks before the wedding because they haven't planned anything yet.


Chocolate Lover said...

A friend of mine bought me this book too. I do love it and refer to it frequently!

Jenny said...

ok i feel alittle overwhelmed reading that list, and im just the know I help with whatever you need help with :) as i am a planner and yes im not that neurotic as you are... :)

Morgan said...

I was going over my lists this past weekend too, but I found that I made them so long ago (6 months), that I'd already done some of the stuff on my list for this month, and there were other things I had already cut out that I could cross off. I say don't stress too much yet, but try to get as much done ahead of time as you can. Wouldn't it be nice to be done with everything a month in advance....we can all hope anyway! ;)

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