There are so many ways to celebrate your upcoming nuptials. From bridesmaids' luncheons to bachelor parties, spending time with those who love you is a great way to add to the infectious joy you are already feeling. Even though the most traditional pre-wedding parties are bridal showers and rehearsal dinners, there are many other ways to have great get-togethers with those close to you.
Your gathering can be simple: coffee and dessert at a relative's home, a backyard barbecue or a Sunday dinner. The idea is for everyone to meet everyone else, to become familiar with faces and names, and to begin the formation of bonds that will carry through the lives of the new couple. Such parties don't have to be fancy or formal, just warm and cheery. A simple invitation will do -- create something whimsical and lighthearted on your PC with some great paper and fabulous fonts. Keep the wording to a minimum; just state the Who, What, When, Where and Why! Make sure to include an RSVP date and a contact number. Then, sit back and enjoy stories of childhood, teenage rebellion and the maturity of the adult who is by your side. These gatherings are a precious way to glimpse into your fiancé's past and peek into your future together.
Depending on the size of your bridal party, you may want to host a "get to know you" affair for your bridesmaids and groomsmen. I normally suggest this type of get-together to my clients who have 8 or more attendants. Such a party allows key people to meet each other, since they will all be at your side for the entire day. Have everyone introduce themselves, talk a little bit about how they know you and your spouse-to-be, and explain what their role in the wedding will be. This kind of gathering provides a wonderful opportunity to go over wedding plans and other pertinent information about your wedding day. If you have retained the services of a wedding planner, they can take care of the logistical portion of your "meeting," while you attend to the social side. By bringing everyone together beforehand, you can smooth the way for a great wedding and your friends will thank you. You've made their task easier because now they know who their partner will be and who knows? Perhaps you'll orchestrate a "love connection" between your closest friends!
As the bride or groom-to-be, showers and bachelor/bachelorette parties are hosted in your honor. But there's no reason why you can't give a little input into the content of your fête. The days of wild, raucous, drink-till-you-pass-out bachelor parties, and sedate tea and cookie showers have pretty much gone the way of the dodo bird. These affairs have changed as much as the brides and grooms honored at them. They are more of a reflection of the couple's lifestyle, as well as the hopes for the relationship the couple is entering into.
Not solely reserved for women, these relaxing and invigorating occasions are a great way to get everyone looking fabulous for the big day. Many spas offer packages for men and women that include massages, facials, manicures and pedicures and most importantly, a serene environment for you to have some "down time" with those closest to you.
Back In The Day:
Who says you have to have a same-sex shower or party? Why not throw back the rug, turn on the stereo, pull out the turntable and have a house party? Invite all your attendants, their significant others, your close friends and then boogie the night away! Go through that vinyl collection, or CD rack and find those songs that remind you of your youth. Show everyone that you really know how to cut the rug -- it's great practice for the reception!! The idea is to have a blast -- no gifts are necessary. So get out the dips and chips, put on some tunes from the era you love best and go for it!
Words Of The Wise:
Sometimes the best examples of long lasting relationships are the ones we are surrounded by. There are members of our families who have been joined together in holy matrimony for years and believe me, there is a formula for that. Why not invite some of your elders over for some good, sage advice? You can serve light refreshments, but you will be getting some heavy-duty information. This is a wonderful opportunity for you and your fiancé to see what makes a marriage long lasting from those whose years and wisdom surpass yours.
This gathering doesn't have to be formal -- just sit around and ask a few questions. Your elders will likely be more than happy to pass along the formidable knowledge they've gained over a lifetime. Having this sort of get-together is also a way to honor the elders in your family who have set a true example of what it means to be married. They will appreciate you for it.
Your reception isn't the only party that celebrates your new status as husband and wife. There are so many festive ways to mark the beginning of your journey together -- choose one that will bring you joy and leave you with great memories of this special time.
See More: Bridal Showers , Parties , Planning , Engagements