3.06.12 Our perfect (and soggy!) day xxx

NowMrsB2012NowMrsB2012 Posts: 4,835

The beginning...

I had been on an internet dating site for a few months and had a couple of awful dates. I had decided that I was probably going to give up on it, then James popped up with a message and he looked quite cute, even if he was based 100 miles away! We spoke on the phone and emailed for a few weeks before he asked if I wanted to meet up. At this point I was living in London so we decided to meet at Marylebone station (how romantic!) and go from there.

James pic from his profile:

 




James and I decided to meet on Sunday 15th May 2005. I was meant to be working but had called in sick and had then called my dad to say not to pop in and say hello (like he did most weekends) as I would be stock taking all day! I told one of my friends where I was going though (just to be safe).

I got to the station about 15 minutes early and one of my contact lenses was playing up so I decided to go to Boots and get some solution for it. By the time I got back to the station I was 10 minutes late and was wondering if he would still be there. I looked around and then I spotted him... stood against the doorway of Uppercrust. He looked like he thought he had been stood up, then he saw me and he smiled.

Our first date was a little bit strange. We decided to go to the Science Museum!! No idea why! It was quite a laugh though. At one point he went to put his arm around me and I moved away from him, I really don't know why I did that and he still mentions it now! We then decided to go and rent a DVD and get a takeaway pizza at my flat. We went into the DVD shop and guess who was there? My parents!!!! I had already called my dad and lied that I was working and now I had to confront them. I quickly introduced them to James before running out of the shop with him! I was so embarrassed!

So after our first date James and I saw each other most weekends. I felt like I had known him forever. He would either get the train down to see me or I would go and see him. It wasn't ideal but for the time being it was ok. After our second date I walked James back to the station and we were both in tears. We had only been together a week but we knew this was it. I didnt want him to leave and he didnt want to. The only thought keeping me going was only 6 days til I saw him again.

When I got home I noticed James had popped a little note under my pillow just saying how much he missed me when he wasnt there. It was so early into our relationship but it was amazing how we both felt exactly the same. I think from the first date I knew I wanted to marry him. From that first note it became a bit of a tradition that we would plant notes for each other in our bags or somewhere we would find them when the other had left. I wish I had kept these and I think I put them somwehere 'very safe' but dont know where they are now!

It took three weeks for James to say 'I love you' for the first time. Again, it was incredibly quick but I felt the same.

Then I moved back to Birmingham for my final year of uni (I had been on a placement year) and we saw each other more often. I would often stay round his house, much to his mums disapproval.

Us in the early days (I have lost quite a lot of weight since then!)

 




Things started off very seriously and I genuinely thought we would be engaged and married very quickly. I had never felt anything close to this with anyone before.

Two months into our relationship and James and I flew out to Germany to meet his brother. I was very nervous as I knew how much James idolised his brother and I was desperate for him to like me. I really shouldnt have worried- his brother was lovely!

There was one little issue though. To say things were strained between me and James' mum is a little of an understatement. I remember one time I bought her a bunch of flowers and she looked at them and then chucked them in the bin! Right in front of me! I was devastated. I really really wanted her to like me but I think she saw me as taking her youngest child away from her. I dont think it helped that I stayed quite a lot. Looking back I would probably not have done that but James and I couldnt bear to be apart from each other.

Everything changes....

After uni finished I decided to move closer to James. He wasn't ready to move in together yet so I rented a one bedroom house (with my cat Joey) in the closest town to him.

Things were moving along, James got promoted at work and I started my career in HR. I landed myself a job at quite a prestigious financial services company and moved to a bigger house in a nicer part of town. I also decided to do a college course which was the first step of the HR qualification. At this point James and I had started talking about moving in together and we made plans for him to move into the house with me. We started slowly, moving a few clothes over, him staying over and extra night a week but we both thought it wouldnt be long til he moved in for good.

My first thoughts in those first few months of our relationship turned out to be just a dream though. James and I were not engaged yet and were actually pretty happy to be where we were.

Even James' mum had started to warm to me. I popped round there one weekend and she even made me some toast coz I hadn't had lunch. I know it was only toast but it meant so much to me.

In March 2009, one night after college I came home and phoned James as usual. No answer. I tried again and still didn't get an answer. I made myself a bowl of cornflakes and fed the cats (we had an extra one by then, Pebbles). Then James phoned. He sounded really strange. I asked him what was wrong and he said his mum had been taken into hospital. I asked if she was ok and he said no. I don't really remember driving to the hospital but I think my mum had tried to call me and she phoned the hospital to try and find out what had happened.

I got to the hospital in record time. I was taken through to the relatives room and James was waiting outside. I asked how his mum was and he said she had died. She had a heart attack and the paramedics couldn't revive her. The worst bit was James had been giving his mum CPR until the ambulance came. It must have been awful for him.

I don't really remember much about what happened around this time. I moved in with James and his family to take care of them. It was the most awful time for everyone. I think the one saving grace through all this is I do have is that his mum accepted me before she passed away. I will never forget those two pieces of toast she made me...

I bought Pebbles to their house for a distraction for everyone and she quickly became spoilt rotten there. I decided the best thing to do for everyone would have her stay there. She was so content and James' sister loved her so I thought it would be cruel to take her back again.

Then the day of the funeral I got a phone call from my letting agent saying my landlord was selling the house and I had a month to find somewhere to live. I had a massive go at the woman on the phone, I know looking back it wasn't her fault but we had just buried James' mum and I was full of emotion.

So the search began to look for a new home. I found a flat round the corner from James' family which was really cheap and really big.

A couple of weeks later we were all trying to get back to 'normal' and I was back at work. My manager called me and asked me to come to a meeting at 2pm. I thought this was a bit odd as she normally sat in the office next to me but didnt think much more about it. I went along to the meeting and thats when she told me I was being made redundant. I was devastated. I was allowed to make a phone call but had to be with someone else in the department (sounds like I was in prison!!) and called James to let him know, he was shocked. I just didn't see it coming and had been working my guts out at work. I loved my job and felt like I had failed. I had to go and collect my stuff from my desk and leave straight away, I would be paid my notice. It was awful, the surrounding offices around where my desk was had glass walls and everyone else had been called into one of these offices. As I walked to my desk i could feel them all staring at me. I was in so much of a daze I completely forgot to take the pair of 'cimfy walking to town shoes' with me and they are probably still under my old desk now lol.

So in the space on 3 weeks everything changed but it made James and I stronger as a couple. I think we soon realised if we could survive all that then we could survive anything together.

It took me two weeks to find a new job, it wasnt a permanent position but it would keep me tied over until I found something more long term. I know two weeks isnt long but it drove me up the wall! I started baking and making cakes for anyone who would have them! I also moved in to the flat in the same village as James. All talk of moving in together had stopped and I both think we realised that at this point his family needed him at home more than he needed to move out.


The proposal

This has got to be the most unromantic story ever! We were in Egypt in March 2010 with my parents and sister and her fiance and James and I were chatting by the pool. I think he basically just said -'so do you want to go looking for an engagement ring when we get home?'. That was it!!

We went looking and I found a style I loved, a diamond in the middle of the ring with little diamonds by the side in white gold. we both wanted him to pick the actual ring but now he knew what I liked and my size. All I had to do was wait image

A month later he came over to mine one weekend and was a little edgy. He had bought some clothes over but was carrying them in a bundle. He wouldnt let me near them. I think he went to go out on his bike and I decided to put the clothes away that he had bought over, he had left them on the kitchen table. I scooped them up and a little green box fell out. I knew it was the ring image It took all the will in the world to not look in that box but somehow I managed it. I pquickly put the clothes back on the table and hid the ring in them, smiling to myself, wondering how he would propose.

Another month later, on 31st May 2010 we were watching TV and I joked with him saying -'so am I ever going to get this ring?' His reply? -Do you want it now then?'. And that was it!!!! He told me a few months later he was planning on taking me on a walk through some fields and proposing there but it had been raining so he couldn't do it.

My ring

 




I called my mum (who was in Las Vegas I think) and her reaction? 'About time!' Lol.

We had an engagement party in the September, my parents through it for us. It was gorgeous. We took over a local Italian restuarant, the food was great and we had a fantastic day. I felt like I was on cloud nine. I remember thinking that evening 'if I feel like this now, how am I going to feel on our wedding day!'

And the planning commences!

We originally wanted to get married abroad, in Italy. We wanted our closest family and friends there and then we would have a party when we got back. I contacted a number of wedding planners and we decided on Sardinia.

This is what we dreamed of:

 




We even flew out there and looked at the venues and options with the wedding planner. Although it was exciting neither of us could actually picture getting married there. So we had a re think and decided to get married local to my parents in Essex.

We only looked at two venues. Pledgion (I think!) Barn and Woolston Manor.

The first time we saw Woolston we fell in love....

image

 

image

 



 


And so we booked it! image

My dress
Originally I wanted something Grecian and floaty as we were getting married in Sardinia. I loved Maggie Sottero's destinations collection and some other designers too. I booked two appointments, both in the middle of where my parents live and where I live.

The first shop was amazing and the lady was lovely! I tried on the first dress and it was perfect. My mum, dad and sister were in tears. We all thought it must be because I was in a wedding dress for the first time but after trying on others I knew the first was the one.

Debbie by Maggie Sottero:

 




I did try some Grecian style dresses on but they didnt come close to this one.

We then decided to go to the second shop I had booked the appointment for, just to try loads of different styles and have a bit of fun really. Big mistake going there!!! The woman was appalling, she kept showing me dresses and then saying -actually this wont fit you'. Then she whipped off my bra, without even telling me and grabbed my back and shouted -'back fat' at me!!!

Bridesmaids

I knew three bridesmaids I wanted straight away, my sister, my best friend and James' sister. I then started to get closer to one of my other friends (who I had been really close to at school but we have drifted apart a bit) and asked her to be a bridesmaid too. I clearly didn't think through things properly as I had visions of them all in the same dress but all of my girls are completely different shapes and sizes ranging from 5 foot 2 and a size 8 to 5 foot 8 and a size 16! All the girls were fab though and even all liked the same dress and shoes image 

Rachel by Ebony Rose:

 

Their shoes:

image

 




Hair and make up

My mum had already asked her local salon about wedding hair and we booked the bridesmaids in for a trial, they were fab! Meanwhile I had a hair trial with a lady that was recommended to me and whilst I liked it I didn't love it and mum booked me in to her salon for a trial.

Bridesmaids hair:

 




My hair (originally):

 




Make up was fairly easy to sort, we used the lady recommended to me to do my hair and someone else my sister found.

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Posts

  • MaylanMaylan Posts: 9,604
    Looooove image!!



    I'm so sorry about James's mum image that is so tragic, and poor him! *big hugs*



    Can't wait to read more image
  • SpecialSundaeSpecialSundae Posts: 3,029
    Loving it so far! image
  • NowMrsB2012NowMrsB2012 Posts: 4,835
    I need to get going now but will most more Monday, heres a sneaky peak of our first dance until them




  • nats2013nats2013 Posts: 6,253
    have cried through this first page, so cant wait for when you post some happier life together
  • Lovely story, how use have been there for each other, so sorry about his mum but you sounded amazing!
  • JoeyClareJoeyClare Posts: 2,737
    What a lot to go through in the space of 3 weeks. Can't wait to read more. Loving the sneaky peek. image
  • Sam0407Sam0407 Posts: 489
    Loving your report so far, cant wait to read more! So sorry to hear about James mum.
  • NowMrsB2012NowMrsB2012 Posts: 4,835
    Thanks for your comments girls!



    So, I went about planning every aspect of the day. I wanted to have some thoughtful touches so decided to have a flip flop basket and toiletries baskets in the loos. The flip flops went down fantastically!!!











    Another part I really thought about was the Bridesmaids goody bags. I bought them each a necklace, bracelet and little stud earings but wanted some extra things to put in. So I bought them each a top to wear the morning of the wedding (short sleeved and zip up so it didnt ruin their hair) and a pair of purple flip flops to match their dresses










    These are the necklaces:








    Then there was the cake! When we were in Disney we saw this amazing wonky cake! We found a design we liked but we wanted to modify it a bit



    This was the original cake:








    We had no idea what it would turn out like but were so pleased with the finished cake!




  • MrsFaulkyMrsFaulky Posts: 6,671
    A beautiful report so far lovvie image That really was tragic about James' mum, it's so nice that you felt like you finally got along with her before that happened though.



    I love the line...." Looked around and then I spotted him... stood against the doorway of Uppercrust." image It sounds like Marian Keyes or something !!



    I cannot wait to read the rest honey.



    Biggest congrats to yuo both image
  • NowMrsB2012NowMrsB2012 Posts: 4,835
    Favours



    We knew we wanted something a bit different for our wedding favours and toyed with the idea of M&Ms, then fudge and then my dad had a crazy idea...



    We were having an Italian themed meal, which included a pasta course, why not provide bibs to stop people getting messy!

    We loved the idea but sourcing them was really tough! In the end I found a fab company in Devon that did them for us.



    My sister and husband with the bibs:






    Tables and flowers

    We went to a wedding fair and found a fab company to do the tables and table centres, Party Favourz. Sue was amazing and transformed the venue!








    For the flowers we used the same florist as my sister had as she was great



    Flowers and our shoes






    We also had an archway of flowers for the ceremony but Ill show you those later image
  • Mrs BoundsMrs Bounds Posts: 1,311
    lovely report so far can't wait for the rest xx
  • NowMrsB2012NowMrsB2012 Posts: 4,835

    We also decided to have an Ice cream man, it was June so we thought the weather would be good (oops!)




    Hen do!

    (I know I missed this out before ooops!!!)

    I had my hen do the month before the wedding. My sister and two of my other bridesmaids arranged everything! The whole thing was a total secret!

    Two days before I got a text from my sister with this list of things to bring with:

    You can travel down in anything it doesnt really matter I'm prob wearing leggings flat boots and some kind of casual top, then you need black leggings, black tights, if you have also pack black skinny jeans, you need a pair of black heels, black vest top or t-shirt black going out bag then you need a pair of nice jeans and some casual shoes to wear with them black bra and a white or nude bra I think that's it obviously make up hair straighteners etc any questions just ask xxxx

    So now Im thinking 'what? all black? Weird!'

    I drove down to my parents the Friday after work with one of my friends from work. My mum did us a gorgeous roast dinner. The hen was starting the next morning and I really couldnt sleep as I was so excited!! I also had absouletly no idea what they had planned and really didnt know what to expect!

    So, my friend from work had been given instructions on how to get to the first place. We got on the underground and it was the longest journey of my life! I sounded like a little child- 'are we there yet, are we there yet?' Eventually it was time to get off the train and we walked for 5 mins and came to a block of apartments. My girls had hired one apartment for a few hours for the first part of the day!

    I walked in and everyone had masks with James' face on- scary!!
    After hugging everyone hello and chatting a bit we did a Mr and Mrs quiz, everytime I got an answer wrong I had to take a shot of sourz apple or cherry. Well, I think James was out to sabatage me as some of the answers he had given were really odd!! The one that sticks out is 'what celebrity would i most like to be like?' James answered Natasha Bedingfield!!! Hehehe!  I dont think she was been around for about 5 years!!!

    Then we did a 'how much do you know about is and our wedding' quiz. If less then 4 people got a different answer to me they would have a shot, if more than 4 did then i had the shot. Again, lots of questions wrong so I was downing the shots again. I dont think I will ever drink sourz again!

    Then the next part of the day was revealed to me- we were going cocktail making! Fantastic! However, I would be going in this outfit:




    It was brilliant! I think my reaction says it all- walking around central london as Minnie Mouse!!! And the black clothing finally made sense!

    The other girls were dressed all in black with red tutus, red socks and black mouse ears. They looked amazing!

    Me in my outfit:




    Me with all the girls, there may be a few from tthe forum on here image



    We then checked in to the apartments we were staying in- half in one half of us in another. It was lovely!

    The cocktail making was brilliant! From there we went to a cheesy club. Then we decided to all go back to one of the apartments for a bit of late night take away. We all got into cabs, I was in the first with my mum sister and one of my bridesmaids. When we got to their apartment my bridesmaid couldnt find the key!! It was raining at that point so we decided to go to the other apartment and try and find the key.

    It turned out that my bridesmaid had swapped her bags over just before going out and left the key in the other bag which was now in their apartment!! Numerous phonecalls later and I dont know how long we finally got through to someone who could help. My mum and my friend (Flossy on the forum image ) went to meet the guy and they got the spare key! It was quite funny but only looking back at the time it was a little annoying. I wasnt really bothered but I think everyone was quite tired by then! After they got the key my mum and I walked round to the takeaway and bought about a million pizzas for everyone image

    The next day we went bowling to a really lovely little alley which only had 4 lanes! Everyone had a tshirt to wear with a pic of me when I was little on.

    Pic of me and two of my bridesmaids from the Sunday




    It was a fantastic weekend and I cant thank everyone enough for it. It was the perfect balance and people could dip in and out of what they wanted to do.

  • MaylanMaylan Posts: 9,604
    I'm so envious of your ice cream man! image It would have been perfect image



    MrsF, the whole Marian Keyes Uppercrust James was just hilarious and spot on!
  • NowMrsB2012NowMrsB2012 Posts: 4,835

    Choosing witnesses and Readings (and Ushers!)

    This part stumped us a bit. We wanted people we were close to to be our witnesses but I knew if I choose one friend another would get upset and James had the same thing. In the end James chose a long standing family friend and I had my bridesmaids' mum (who is also my mums best friend).
    The readings were tricky too. Again, I didnt know who to choose. James wanted his mums sister (obvious choice image ) and I originally wanted my mums sister. When we asked my Aunt she said she didnt want to do it as she would be too emotional, that was a shame. We then asked my Mums brothers wife (so really my Aunt i guess) and she was over the moon.

    These are the readings we had:

    Reading 1:
    You have known each other from the first glance of acquaintance to this point of commitment. At some point, you decided to marry. From that moment of yes, to this moment of yes, indeed, you have been making commitments in an informal way.

    All those conversations that were held in a car, or over a meal, or during long walks. All those conversations that began with, When we're married, and continued with I will and you will and we will. All those late night talks that included someday? and somehow and maybe - and all those promises that are unspoken matters of the heart. All these common things, and more, are the real process of a wedding.

    The symbolic vows that you are about to make are a way of saying to one another, You know all those things that we've promised, and hoped, and dreamed - well, I meant it all, every word. Look at one another and remember this moment in time. Before this moment you have been many things to one another - acquaintance, friend, companion, lover, dancing partner, even teacher, for you have learned much from one another these past few years.

    Shortly you shall say a few words that will take you across a threshold of life, and things between you will never quite be the same. For after today you shall say to the world: This is my husband. This is my wife.

    Reading 2:
    Today is a day you will always remember
    The greatest in anyone's life
    You'll start off the day just two people in love
    And end it as husband and wife.
    It's a brand new beginning, the start of a journey
    With moments to cherish and treasure
    And although they'll be times when you both disagree
    These will surely be outweighed by pleasure
    You'll have heard many words of advice in the past
    When the secrets of marriage were spoken
    But you know that the answers lie hidden inside
    Where the bond of true love lies unbroken
    So live happy forever as lovers and friends
    It's the dawn of a new life for you
    As you stand there together with love in your eyes
    From the moment you whisper -I do'
    And with luck all your hopes and your dreams can be real
    May success find its way to your hearts
    Tomorrow can bring you the greatest of joys
    But today is the day it all starts

    Both Aunts did a fantastic job!

    The choice for Ushers was simple after we had chosen our Aunts to do the readings, we just asked their husbands! Both were fantastic on the day.

    The day before

    The lead up to the wedding was fantastic! The whole week went by in a blur, I still cant believe how calm I was!

    The day before we spent the whole day in my sisters beauty salon, it was fab! I even persuaded James to have a massage and a manicure image All my bridesmaids were getting treatments as well as various Aunts, famiy friends and a few randoms! Lol

    The evening before we had lots of people round to my parents house for food and wine. James stayed in a hotel with his family and his best friend. They all went out for a curry.

    Ive just realised I havent mentioned who James' best man was! This is a funny story. James always wanted his brother as his best man. He lives in Germany and they dont see each other very often. We had an engagement party which he couldnt attend. At our engagement party one of James' friends started announcing to people he was James' best man! Even my mum came up to me and said she had just met his best man but was a bit confused coz she thought he had chosen his brother!

    Unfortunatly, I had to be the one to tell said friend that he wasnt best man. James really didnt want to so I said i would be the bitch and do it. He didnt take it well, he even refused to come to the wedding which was awful for James.

  • NowMrsB2012NowMrsB2012 Posts: 4,835
    Quoted:
    MrsF, the whole Marian Keyes Uppercrust James was just hilarious and spot on!


    Just noticed this! image I love Marian Keyes!
  • jojomamalacejojomamalace Posts: 286
    I LOVE LOVE LOVE the bibs idea!!!! image



    So sorry to hear about your husbands mum.



    Can't wait for the rest xx
  • I love this report image Congratulations x
  • What a beautiful story. Brought a tear to my eye xxx
  • MrsFaulkyMrsFaulky Posts: 6,671
    Tee hee! It just made me chuckle! image Marian Keyes is fab!



    How lovely to spend a whole day getting treatments done!!



    I remember you saying about the best man thing, how pathetic of him.



    The readings you had were lovely image



    I'm looking forward the seeing the food!Your menu looked to die for! image
  • NowMrsB2012NowMrsB2012 Posts: 4,835

    The day arrives!

    We went to bed just after midnight. I was sharing a bed with my bridesmaid/best friend and we were awake nattering for ages! I finally managed to get to sleep but woke up at 4.30 and couldnt get back to sleep. I didnt want to disturb her so I crept downstairs and put the tv on, who knew that there were so many chat shows on at that time. Good old Jeremy Kyle and Maury! image I kept checking the weather and it was ok until about 6 when it went really dark and started raining.

    At around 7 oclock my mum appeared. She was jumping around like a child on christmas day. After that everyone else got up and we sat around drinking tea.

    Then my other two bridesmaids and the make up ladies arrived. We had a strict rota of who was going at what time. If we hadnt had this we would have really struggled to fit everyone in! Two bridesmaids had their make up done whilst two were driven (by my fantastic brother in law) to the hair salon. Again, i was completly calm, it was my mum and dad getting stressed!  I sat in the hair salon chatting away to the hair dresser like it was just another day!

    Mum had bought loads of fruit and crumpets for breakfast. I kept having food shoved down my throat! I dont think I would have eaten anything unless someone had made me.

    Then the photographers arrived. I have to say they were absoultely amazing! They worked around us completly and ddnt get in the way at all. By this time it was time to get the bridesmaids in their dresses. Mum did two and I did the other two. Then it was my turn image I had my mum and 3 of my bridesmaids helping, not sure I needed that much help but it was lovely having everyone together!

    Me seeing myself for the first time

     

  • MrsFaulkyMrsFaulky Posts: 6,671
    Awwwwww! Absolutely gorgeous!! Your mum looks so proud image It also does not surprise me that your mum was force feeding you...she's a food pusher lol!!
  • MaylanMaylan Posts: 9,604
    Awww that's so great! Having everyone around you image!! And making you eat!!
  • MrsFaulkyMrsFaulky Posts: 6,671
    Oh NMB...while I remember could you please let me know where you got your hooded tops from? I've got the transfers that I was going to put on vest tops but not a good idea for the hair do's really. Cheers my dears image
  • PeasnCarrotsPeasnCarrots Posts: 1,831
    Love love love your report so far!!!





    More please image
  • NMB you look so beautiful, I love all the details too - keep writing please!!!! image x
  • NowMrsB2012NowMrsB2012 Posts: 4,835
    Thanks everyone image



    Mrs F I got them from Asda, it wasnt too long ago so they may still have them.
  • MrsFaulkyMrsFaulky Posts: 6,671
    Oh fab thanks NMB! I shall have a little lookie image
  • MrsVanderSteenMrsVanderSteen Posts: 8,204
    Yay we have a MrsB image



    Loved your report so far, great choice of readings image and would you just look at the baskets with the goodies haha xxxx
  • Queenie87Queenie87 Posts: 70
    loving your report image xx image
  • hairbySEhairbySE Posts: 34
    fab report , would u be able to give me the website of the bibs that is such a great idea u had we having a bbq with my partner and friends cooking it and bibs would go great as we having ribs and brisket
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