What no one tells the newly-engaged: you don’t have to plan it all today!

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Clocks and Candles
Photo by Gathering Light Photography

Did you know that, in the more mainstream wedding industry world, November – February is what’s known as Engagement Season? A disproportionately large number of proposals tend to happen between Thanksgiving and Valentine’s Day.

Now, Offbeat Bride doesn’t quite fit into the wedding industry’s scheduling, but even among nontraditional couples, we do notice that this time of year there are more folks making the decision to get married.

This is all to say, we KNOW some of you just got engaged, and are now being bombarded with questions: When’s it happening? What setting are you picturing? What’s your theme? How can I help? Have you thought about decor? Can I get you in touch with my baker friend?

Your friends and family are asking these questions because they’re excited for you, and want to give you the opportunity to share your own excitement.

But when you get peppered with these questions, your response may not be excitement… it may be anxiety! Wait, I’m supposed to have a theme? WTF is a wedding website even FOR, anyway? Should we just elope? And I’m supposed to already know who I’m going to ask to be my bridesmaids? Wait, I’m not even sure I WANT bridesmaids! And why do people keep talking about STDs?!

Deep breath. Exhale. Roll your shoulders a bit. I’m here to let you in on a little secret: You don’t have to know the answers to any of these questions right now. Even those of you working with short engagements don’t have to know your entire wedding planning vision in the first week.

We have a page specifically set up for the newly-engaged, which includes a link to the infamous Offbeat Bride checklist. Yes, there’s lots of stuff to do, but you don’t have to do it all today.

As with any enormous project, it’s just a series of little tasks that you can break down and tackle one by one.

But for today? For this week? Just enjoy holding hands and smiling. Take all the questions from friends and family for what they are: an expression of joy and excitement, with a question mark on the end. You don’t have to have the answers today, and for now, you can just enjoy the waves of excitement and love.

You can download the checklist and grab the wedding planning spreadsheets and get to work next week. For today, just hold hands, kiss your sweetie, and smile a lot.

Longtime readers: what do you wish you’d known your first week after getting engaged?

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