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12th October, only 214 days to go!

I have read lots of these threads now so figured I would give it a shot! Hope I don't bore anyone! 

A bit of our History. 

H2b and I first met at the young and tender age of 14,  introduced by a mutual friend. We hung out a few times, spent a bit of time together, but not much arose from then onwards.  I have vivid memories of when I first met him, (no-one could possibly NOT notice him) He had dyed his hair, which hung in "curtains" around his eyes, bleach blonde a couple of weeks before, but the following day he had gone into school where a friend had, in jest, attacked his hair with a purple bingo dabber! (to this day I still wonder why 14 year old lads walk around with bingo dabbers in their back pockets, but never mind!) He'd gone home and tried to wash the ink out of his hair, hut it had stained it a slight shade of pink. His hair, coupled with his glasses which also had a pink tinge to them, rightfully earned him the nickname "pinky" (he himself has not quite decided whether his love of the colour pink came before or after this fact) 

Anyway, eight years passed, as I moved a grand total of ten times in about 5 different towns, over 3 countys, H2b stayed put in the same place he had always called home. For me, those eight years were very difficult. I left home on my 16th birthday, and never really found a place to call "home" (hence all the moves) I found myself spiralling into a deep depression, meaning I was uncapable of work or pretty much any social interaction. I found myself living 75 miles away from all my friends and family. However, I eventually got the help that I needed and was close to pulling myself out the other side when disaster struck and my flat was broken into and vandalised. 

The next day I just so happened to be speaking to an old school friend on FB,  she knew of my battles in the past with mental health and asked if I would mind speaking to a friend of hers as he was going through something similar. "His name is Ben" she typed "But we all know him as pinky"

No way? 

Of course I assured her that I would speak to her friend. A few emails later and we decided it ws neccessary that we talked on the phone. and boy did we talk! (later that month I had a £135 phonebill to prove it!!!) We talked about life, where we had been since school, our families, our friends, favourite movies, interests. You name it, we discussed it.

I told him about the break in at home and how much trouble I was having trying to face it, he sympathised and seemed angry that someone would do such a thing. When we finally got off the phone at around 6am, I drifted off to sleep with the biggest smile on my face. 

The next day (afternoon, because as I noted, it was 6am before we got off the phone) I had a text message from pinky telling me to meet him at my local train station in twenty minutes. Confused, and looking like death warmed up, I scurried thru the ransack that was my flat and tried to find some clean and undamged clothes. I rushed to the train station and arrived just in time to see H2b walking out the station doors. I recognised him immediately. His hair was shorter now, and it was his natural light brown colour. But that pink tint in his glasses was still there. 

Curiously, I asked what he was doing here, and would you believe it? Like my own knight in shining armour, he had travelled 70odd miles to come and help me clear out the mess the burgulars had made of my home because the night before I had noted that I was struggling to face it alone. image I was in tears. I had never known anyone do such a kind thing for someone before. After what must have been hours of pleading I finally relented and took him back to my flat to let him survey the damage. 

 

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  • He did not in the slightest seem fazed by the mess my intruders had made, and tactfully cleaned away the damaged glass from the photoframes and stood the photos back up on the side they had come from. 

    It took us two days, and very little sleep, but finally, we finished. I was so happy, and I owed him big time. It was at this point he started talking about the trouble he was having at home. He was out of work, and was having issues with his Mums new boyfriend. Only 2 months before he had gone thru a complete breakdown. My heart felt for him. He was such a caring guy, and only wanted to do good. I asked if there was anything I could do to help, since he had done me such a big favor. He said that I had done enough in allowing him to help me. It had given him a chance to take his mind of his problems for a while and get away from the area he didn't want to be in anymore. Before I knew what I was saying I was asking if he wanted to stay a few more days. He instantly agreed. And inside I was thrilled. 

    I was looking forward to getting to know him better. 

    We hit it off immediately. We spent our 3rd day together on my sofa watching all 3 (there was only 3 at the time) Twilight movies since I loved them so much. He asked me about my writing (I had previously won an award for an online book I had written) while I listened as he explained and demonstrated Poi, (fire spinning), something he is extremely good at. (Tho I have not seen him do it with real fire yet. I am too nervous! He does have some wicked flashy LED substitues tho! image

    It was only a week before Christmas, and the next day he ntoed at my extreme lack of decoarations in the flat- I had seen no point in haing them up, I wouldn't be home for christmas, However h2B convinced me I needed decorations so, I took what little money I had left after the break in and we went into town and picked up a few decorations from the local charity shops. 

    With a grand total of £6.20 this is what we managed to achieve. Nothing flashy, but it certainly livened up the living room and looked cute. We even found 2 little heart baubles and hung them on the tree, one for each of us, and joked about how he would soon have to take his and leave. 

    To this day this photo remains important to me, because it shows one of the first fun things we ever did together. 

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     THIS is the first photo of us together; 

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    (You will all have to excuse my hair, it has an annoying habit of falling out whenever it feels like it image )

    We kind of fell into a relationship after this. And 5 days later when we back to his hometown for xmas (because I was going there anyway- its where my parents lived) we both cried as we said goodbye at the station. It was ridiculous! We'd spent a week together and suddenly we couldn't bare to be apart? 


     

     

  • SilvereyeSilvereye Posts: 288

    Ooh more more!! What a lovely start to your story! He sounds like an amazing man, and it was obviously fate that brought you together! Yay!

  • We made plans to meet up on Boxing Day evening and both realised we did not want to be apart, So, after a grand total of 8, yes EIGHT days, he upped sticks and moved in with me! We discussed the possibilty of a long term relationship but neither of us wanted that. 

    I could now tell you that everything went smoothly after this. But then, of course I would be lying. Its a HUGE adjustment to go from being on your own to living with someone you are still getting to know! We didn't argue, but we found it difficult. H2B was sleeping in the living room for now, and it was hard for me getting used to someone elses sleep pattern. He was still asleep when I would get up every morning and while I didn't exactly go to bed early, It was clearly a lot earlier than he was used to. Finding room for all our stuff was a nightmare. For weeks he was still living out of holdalls and I found myself silently swearing each time I tripped over one in the hall way. Housework became a major issue. I had lived independantly for 6 years at this point. H2b had always lived at home with his mum and had things done for him. This was NOT how I intended to live my life. Despite all these differences, and the many MANY more besides though, We did grow closer. I met his mum the day he collected some belongings to move to my house, but he had never met my parents. That is, until the end of January, when my Dad called and asked if I knew anyone who needed a bit of work for a few weeks, Boy, Did I! I spoke to h2b and he jumped at the chance of getting out thereand earning some more money. The only problem was, my Dad works away the maority of the time. And it would mean that h2b would have to meet my Dad, 70 miles away, at 6am tomorrow! And there would be no chance for introductions. 

    Yikes! 

    My Dad had always been open with me about his dislike of any previous boyfriend I had. He was never rude to them. He just made it painfully clear that he disliked them to me. So the thought of my new bf and my dad having to spend 6 weeks together sharing a hotel room was a little daunting. However, h2b took it all in his stride despite being open with me about how nervous he was. 

    Now would probably be a good time to add that I am a TOTAL Daddy's girl. His first born. So in his eyes, I will ALWAYS be his baby.  while growing up I had constantclashes with my mum, but my Dad and I had always been close. 

    This is my lovely daddy; 

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    So, with nerves coursing through my entire body I said goodbye again to h2b as he went off that night to stay at his mums house so he would be close by for my Dad to pick him up at 6am. 

    To this day, the whole family still laughs at h2bs story of how when he got in the van with my dad and were on their way up north my dad told him three things; 

    "Just remember, 1, I am bigger than you, 2, I am harder than you, and 3, I always carry a knife" :O

    Poor pinky!

    My Dad is a sign fitter btw, so when he says "I always carry a knife" he means his retractable blade thing he uses for cutting the signs and banners. He has an odd sense of humour my dad. He's the softest guy in the world, just very good with words!! 

    H2b took it all in his stride and stuck out all six weeks. Worked his backside of for my Dad, to prove not only he was a good worker but good enough for me also.

     

  • The day after they got home I had a phonecall from my dad. H2b had earned his full approval! I was so happy!  H2b spoke so kindly of my Dad when he got home I couldn't help but grin from ear to ear. They have become best friends ever since!

    While h2b was away working I missed him so much that it hurt. for 3 weeks they where in N.Ireland, making it hard for us to talk on the phone because of call costs etc. It was then that I realised I truly loved him. I had a clear out of some of my belongings, to make room for all of his stuff. And tried my best not to cringe at some of his belongings as I placed them on shelves and bookcases and tried to make them work with my own. 

    I knew this what was I really wanted. And when h2b returned, thankfully, despite by biggest worries, he had not been put off my the time he had spent with my Dad. I had vivid, vivid dreams of him coming home and telling me that he just couldn't do it, grabbing his stuff and leaving swiftly!  

    Since then we have lived quite happily despite all the drama his family have brought to the table. (more on THAT later) fast forward another eight months and the differences in our lives were remarkable. Both in emplyment both happier than we ever thought possible. We had a little holiday in May to Cornwall, where our relationship only grew stronger and stronger. 

    Here are a couple of photos: 

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  • I've just realisd I am writing LOADS, lol, anyone who reads this will just have to bear with me, as I noted before, I LOVE to write, and have written a few novels, so I struggle to keep it to a minimum image

  • The Proposal

    Now, the writer inside of me, wishes I could tell you there was some huge, romantic gesture that I could write forever about. But, thats just not how it planned out for us.

    h2b and I were sitting on our bed one day and subject of marriage came up. We both knew it was something we really wanted, and discussed it at length. 

    We both wanted to get married, we wanted to make a commitment to spend the rest of our lives together. But we also knew a "wedding" was going to be a nightmare with all of his family involved. (Again, I will go into a bit more detail later) 

    We talked about going to gretna green and eloping. We had it planned, we was going to pick my younger sister up  from college one evening, (without telling her first) my best friend, and one of his frends and go without telling a soul. (I was more than prepared to steal sis's phone from her so she couldn't tell anyone until after)  

    We picked which of the gretna venues we wanted to be married in; 

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     And decided that we would go for a meal afterwards. 

    Here's a quick photo of the 2 ladies I planned on taking with me. I don't have a photo of h2bs friend image (not to self: add that to to do list, I LOVE photos) 

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     This photo was taking on my birthday trip to the zoo last year, 

    From left to right, Me, My stunning best Friend Louise, and My beautiful little sister Julia. 

    And just for good measure, (and because I like this photo so much) 

    Here is a photo of me and h2b on the same zoo trip; 

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     Still don't know exactly why I love this photo so much. It's not very flattering, I just love it! 

    Anyway, where was I? Gretna yes, right.

    So we knew where we was going, all we had to pick was a date. In order to keep it as secret we decided the sooner the better. So we decided to pick a date a month from then. 

    I chose the package we wanted, the most basic one, and was just about to hit "submit" online, when a distant cousin of mine commented on one of my old photos on FB. 

    I apologise for the REALLY poor quality of this photo. Its a photo of a photo taken with a phone MANY years ago. 

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     Me, on my Dad's lap and my Mum with my younger brother. 

     

  • MrsA-2013MrsA-2013 Posts: 555

    Aww, the story of how you got together is just like a film!

  • image Tears sprung to my eyes and I just couldn't do it. I needed to have my Dad with me on my wedding day. I quickly clicked the little x on the gretna website and never looked at it again. H2b laughed softly at me and asked what I was doing. 

    I showed him the photo and told him I couldn't bear not to have my Dad with me on my wedding day. After a short discussion we figured out how impossible it would be to keep it a secret from everyone if I tried to get my Dad to come along. 

    So what now? 

    Well, we had two options;

    1) We could put the wedding to one side and hope that in time all the family issues we were having would subside. 

    2) Have a bigger type of wedding, with all the friends and family invited. 

    We had never been ones for waiting. We were together 8 days before he moved in with me. We were together 10 months before we decided to run off to gretna. so we went for the latter option. Plus, we knew the chance of family issues being sorted were zero to none.

    So, we announced our engagement. 

    H2b brought me a beautiful, simple, white gold ring. 

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    Because we hadn't yet told anyone of our plans, we discussed h2b asking my Dad for my hand in marriage. As is per tradition.

    Now as much as I love my Dad, and I do, he is my world, my rock and my everything. The stubborn part of me did not want my h2b to do this. I had no doubt my Dad would consent. That was not the issue. 

    I had left home 7 years prior to this, and stubbornly, I did not feel it appropriate. It would have been a different matter entirely if I still lived at home with my parents. but that day had long passed. I just didn't like the idea of having to have my dad's "permission" when I had lived so independantly for so long. So that was that decision made. 

    And then we told all our friends and family we were intending to get married. 

    It is fair to say the reactions were mixed, but mostly positive. My mum responded with a simple “OK” although in a later conversation she did then follow it up with a “Are you sure this isn’t too quick?”

    My Dad, although appearing to be slightly put out by the whole not been asking for permission thing, joked that it was too quick because, and I quote “I don’t know how to dance”

    MIL2b said “Oh, when?” and later confirmed she was expecting it to be sometime as soon as tomorrow :O (Even we couldn’t manage it that quick!)

    My lovely aunt responded with a huge congratulations and a promise to help us by donating her time to creating our wedding food for us.

    H2bs Nan however, had another move up her sleeve. Since the first time we had ever met she delighted in bullying me. So her response to us announcing our engagement was sheer nastiness. In fact, what she actually did was tell anyone and everyone who would listen that not only was I forcing h2b to marry me, but that I regularly beat him up and abuse him. Thus, almost ending our wedding plans before they had even fully began.

     

  • However, many heated conversations, and a lot of tears later, we knew that we could not allow this one negative person to have any input on our wedding day. Although my h2b still insists she “has” to attend the wedding. I am aiming for the ceremony and banning her from the reception. She has bullied my MIL2b for the past 25 years and she has also made a lot of other enemies amongst our guests. Primarily amongst my family after they all discovered the lies she had been spreading about me.

    Of course all of our friends were happy for us.

    Due to our limited budget, despite the fact we both work we are on a very limited income and refuse to get ourselves into debt over the wedding, we decided against having an engagement party. But, when offered the opportunity to do an engagement photo shoot we both jumped at the chance.

    Yes, you guessed it, more photos to follow… (some of them are only proofs I am afraid, My scanner appears to have decided to stop working)

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    This is my favourite photo; 

     

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  • Now for the venue…

    As previously mentioned, we had originally intended to go to Gretna Green. We had thoroughly scoured the website, looking at the different venues they have their for marriages. We had also seen the castle nearby, and had fallen in love with the look of it, but had initially ruled it out due to the size of our wedding party! But it could possibly be an option now…

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    However, we soon realised, it would very difficult for all of our guests to make it there. So we started looking for more local venues.

    Below are a few of the venues we looked at;

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    First we looked at Alexander House, which is absolutely beautiful! But didn’t have the right feel for us. Though gorgeous, it seemed too formal for our needs.

    Then we looked here;

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    Wakehurst Place, again, beautiful, but still seemed too formal for us, and too big for our needs.

    So we tried somewhere smaller,

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    We both loved Selden Barn. It was absolutely beautiful, but instead of this time feeling too big, we worried we not be able to invite everyone we wanted to the ceremony in that small room!

    We tried many, many places after this, but all them seemed too formal or not the right size for what we needed. There was 1 place we ruled out instantly just based on the curtains! But other than that, although we agreed that any wedding in those venues would be beautiful they didn't feel like "us"

    We had ruled out registry offices from day one. The only weddings either of us had ever attended had been in registry offices, and both agreed, although they certainly work for a huge majority of people, we didn’t feel them personal enough. I think the word “office” played a roll in this decision. 

  • Anyway, we were stumped. We had no married friends we could turn to for advice, we started looking at the marriages of family members. Mil2b has been married three times, each time in a registry office, my mum and dad were married in their local church 25 years ago. When visiting them one day I took a look at their photo album for inspiration.

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    The church they were married in is in the parish where I lived for the first 5-6 years of my life. I used to attend there with my school on a regular basis it is in the quietest little village, which consists of basically 1 street, a couple of local shops, the church, and some tiny cottages. It is so picturesque! 

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     And then of course there is the sentimental value, of St Peters Church. As well as being the Church where my parents got married. It is also the resting place of my beloved Nanny Mac, who passed away when I was 12. When I was a child, she lived with us and helped my parents raise me when I was a baby. She did, and still does play such a key role in my life, Many influences I have in my life are from her, and I miss her dearly every day. 

    Here is a photo of my beautiful Nanny and my Grandad at my parents wedding. 

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     Sadly, it is the only photo I have of her, so is one of my most cherished pictures. She was such a beautiful and caring woman who played such a key role in my life, without her influence I could not hope to have half the strength I have today. 

  • Seeing my parents wedding photos made me think a lot more thoroughly than I ever had about what kind of wedding, and indeed marriage, I wanted. 

    We had never considered a church wedding before, as neither of us are particularly religous it was something that we had initially bypassed without a second thought. But seeing these photos stirred something inside of me that I didn't even know was there. 

    Now all I had to was try and convince h2b that a church wedding was the way forward.together we did a lot of research online into the Church of England, and discovered that they're rules regarding marriage are not nearly as strict as we would have thought they'd be. 

    We looked up our local church, St Richards. 

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     But whilst it was magnificent in its own way, it lacked the character that so many older churches have.

    So, I returned once again to the church where my parents were married, St Peters. a forty five minute drive from where we lived, we definately did not live within the parish boudaries. But we did some more research and found that the laws have changed. You can marry in a church of your choosing, at the vicars discretion, if you have a connection to the area, such as having lived there for a period of your life, or if your parents or grandparents were married there. 

    I was starting to have hope. 

    But we still needed permission to get married there. 

    It was 10th October 2012 when we visited the Rector at St Peters, We explained my connection to the area, and in particular with that church and THANKFULLY they said yes! We set the date then and there! H2b, luckily agreed with me about the beauty of the church!

    12th October 2013. 367 days! 

    Here are some photos of our beautiful church; 

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  • OK, so I know there are a lot of photos there, but honestly, none of them do the church justice. I mean, the arch outside alone... If they had no agreed to marry us I think I would have snuck over there on my big day just for photo opportunities under there! It is stunning. Add to that the interior and well, I am heaven. 

     

    I cannot be happier with our choice of venue... Not only am I getting to marry the most amazing and thoughtful man in the world, but I am going to be getting married somewhere that holds tremendous sentimental meaning to me! My parents were married here, and it is where my dear Nan is, nothing could be more perfect. 

     

    I can only kick myself for not thinking of it earlier. 

  • MrsA-2013 wrote (see)

    Aww, the story of how you got together is just like a film!

    I've never looked at it that way, but I can see what you mean. Thank you image x

     

    Silver_eye wrote (see)

    Ooh more more!! What a lovely start to your story! He sounds like an amazing man, and it was obviously fate that brought you together! Yay!

    He is definately an amazing man. I am so lucky to have found him image x

  • Reception.

    After having unsuccessfully looked at so many venues, we sat down and had a long chat bout what kind of reception venue we wanted. We decided that we wanted something plain, that we coujld transform in our own way. And what seemed more perfect for that that the local church hall... 

     

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    Obviously, these are set up for other events, but I just LOVE that stage. It is so high and so beautiful. My MOH is singing our first dance song for us, and she is going to look winderful up there, plus h2b is going to do an LED Poi display so he wil need to be far away from any wandering children so they don't get hit in the face or something... 

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     We made an appointment for that following weekend, and it was all booked. Yay! A blank canvas! This was going to be a lot of fun. 

  • Our Wedding Party.


    There was no question over who I wanted as my MOH and BMs, I have two very beauiful Best Friends, A younger sister who I love dearly, and sil2b, 

    Here they are. 

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     Me and my beautiful MOH Louise on a night out. 

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     Me and the gorgeous DonDon, again, heading off on a night out. 

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     Me Beautiful Little Sister Julia at a trip to the Zoo last year. She loves animals and is studying animal management at College. I am so, so proud of her. 

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     and here is a beautiful photo of my sil2b. 

     

  • We also have 5 beauitul young men in our wedding party, aged 12, 5, 3, 2, and 2 again. With the exception of the eldest they all belong to the BMs respectively. (except for my sister- she's child free and hopefully stays that way for at least another 10 years *nods lots* ) It sounds like a lot but believe it or not they do all have jobs. 12yo, h2bs nephew/god son, will be handing out order of services along with h2b brothers (will get to him later) 5y/o is sil2bs eldest and he has possibly the cutest job out of all of them. He is going to have a little sign and bell to announce my arrival at the church.

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     Sign will obviously say h2bs name but we havent recieved it yet! 

    3 yo is BM dondon's little boy. He;s going to carry our rings for us. They will be tied on TIGHT!

    and the 2 yos are sil2b and MOHs little boys respectively. Sil2bs boy will be carrying a ring cushion with h2bs vows on them, and moh's boy (who is also my godson) will have a cushion with my vows on them.  

    There will also be a new addition by the time of our weding day as sil2b is expecting another little boy this may which we are all excited about! Luckily the kids suits are availavel in 0-3 months and 3-6 months sizes so we may just have to dress him to match image

    I also have my gorgeous little god daughter as my flower girl. Shes only going to be 18months old on my wedding day so slightly worried she will steal the whole affair with her undeniable cuteness image I know... Jealous of an 18 month old.. what will the world come to next? image


    Then we have the Best Man and Groomsmen... Now, over the years I read some horror stories with regars to bridesmaids, but NEVER about the groomsmen/best man. I think h2b is on his 3rd right now. So, as it stands, H2bs eldest half brother Stewart is going to be his Best Man, and his younger half brother Harry will be his groom men. Couple them with the eldest boy we have and the scene is complete! 

     
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