Sandra is planning an Escape wedding at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel at the Wedding Garden and Brisa Courtyard.
Once the excitement of your engagement wears off and you’re heading full speed into planning your wedding, you may run into a handful of complications that may leave you frustrated and screaming into your pillow at night. Trust me … I would know. Our wedding is this month, finally, after nearly three years of planning. I know all too well that planning a wedding has its highs and lows, and a Disney wedding has its own unique challenges. Here is my advice to my fellow Disneyland Escape brides to help you stay sane through the planning process.
Advice to Fellow Disneyland Escape Brides
You Can’t Please Everyone
Disney weddings sound like a great idea to us, but not to everyone, and guess what: that is okay. There is a chance that someone that you love – whether it is your own parents, sister in-law, best friend, or your fiancé’s very traditional great aunt – may not be too excited about the idea. You may feel hurt, let down and disappointed. Know that your feelings are valid, but accept the person’s invitation regrets in a gracious and understanding way. With or without them, your wedding day will still be as beautiful as ever. The bottom line is: the people who *really* want to be there will find a way to be there, regardless of their personal feelings about your venue choice.
“Let It Go”
Expect the unexpected! No matter how fun and excited you are to plan your beautiful wedding, you will have stress, especially when you have six months (officially) to plan everything. There will be some things that won’t go as planned, like a member of the bridal party not having their attire ordered on time or guests dropping out at the last minute. Maybe your dream photographer is already booked the day of your wedding and you will need to search for another one. It could be something as simple as some of your guests have dietary allergies and you will have to work with Disney to come up with an alternative meal to accommodate them. No matter how small or big, there will be something to stress about. Breathe. Just breathe. Plan out what days you will focus on wedding planning. Write a to-do list and check it off weekly, to make sure you have everything done and you’re ahead of schedule. And realize there are certain things – such as weather, bridal party behavior, and bad attitude from family members – that are out of your control.
Reduce Your Stress
With all that said, my next bit of advice is to not cause yourself unnecessary stress. This is actually a motto I live by daily but it fits here, too. What I mean by this is, figure out what is worth stressing over and what is not. Maybe you are wanting to D.I.Y. your flowers, but if you’re not crafty it might be less stressful to have someone else help you with them, or just simply pay a floral company. Speaking of help, don’t try to do everything yourself. Be sure you’re discussing everything with your partner, and delegating tasks between the two of you. Also see what tasks your family members and bridal party are willing to help with. Don’t be demanding but if you need help, ask for it.
Assess Your Priorities
If you’re planning an Escape wedding then it likely means you’re on a tight budget. Which means it’s important to weigh out all your options. This is was a big thing for my fiance and I. When we were deciding if we wanted to have a Disneyland wedding our biggest question was, “Will we regret it if we choose another venue?” And we felt that not having our wedding at Disneyland would be something that we would deeply regret. If something was a tough decision, we would sleep on it before making up our minds. Using this “priorities” method made it easy to decide on a wedding budget and what extras we would have at our wedding, as well as who we would invite to share our special day with. By knowing our priorities early on, it made decisions easier, and we don’t feel a lot of guilt for excluding certain things that simply were not that important to us.
Respect the Budget
Another piece of advice I have to share with you is to stick to your budget. When planing your wedding it is SO EASY to go over budget. Ask any other Disneyland bride or groom. It doesn’t matter if you’re planning an Escape package or the Wishes package, there will be times when you may consider picking up a second or even third job to pay for all the extras you want. Trust me, its not worth the sleepless nights or the extra stress. And you certainly do not want to go into debt for your wedding. Instead, write down what part of your wedding is the most important for the two of you and consider that when making your budget. Some couples consider photography to be very important and will spend a little more of their budget for a great photographer. Other couples might decide extra decor and fancy lighting at the reception is what they truly want. There is no rule to this; just what you and your partner really want for your event.
Remember, Wedding Planning is Supposed to be Fun
And finally, but arguably the most important advice, enjoy every moment of the planning process. No matter how stressful it is. No matter how many times you tried to convince your fiancé to secretly elope (guilty). Take little moments to stop and savor the planning process. When your wedding day has come and gone, you may end up feeling the wedding blues and wish you had another wedding to plan to occupy your mind. Enjoy the process and document it in a journal or online blog, if you can. Trust me, you will be happy you did.