Q: How did you meet?
A: We met in 1993 in a nightclub. I pinched his bottom as he walked past me! I had a dance with him later and a kiss (or two!), and he gave me his telephone number on a beer mat written in my lipstick. I wasn’t going to phone (I like the men to do the chasing!) but ironically Mum said that if I didn’t ring him it could have consequences on my future!!! GOOD OLD MUM!!!
Q: Describe the marriage proposal.
A: We were both living at home at the time and Simon had taken his mum and dad to the airport for their holidays. We had been together just over a month. He phoned me from the airport and proposed. I came off the phone and planted a big kiss on Mum’s cheek!!
Q: How long did you spend preparing for the day and how was it?
A: We started planning the big day around 18 months ago and I’m glad we started early. We decided on a Christmas wedding as everyone seems to get married June/July. I hated every minute of the planning and took far too much on. I’m a perfectionist and knew exactly how I wanted everything and didn’t trust anyone else to do it. I made my own veil, brought in a load of silk flowers and did my own pedestal arrangements, made my own table decorations; invites; order of service etc etc. I was completely stressed out and just wished for the day to be over and had numerous family arguments. The week before the wedding was the worst. I took the week off work (thankfully), got up at 6 am, and worked right through. Most nights I wouldn’t be in bed before 1 am. In a word it was HELL!!!!!
Q: What type of wedding ceremony did you have and where?
A: We had a traditional church ceremony in the village we live, Penycae, near Wrexham. Most of the family has been married/christened there, and it’s a place where I feel at ease. I’m not a churchgoer at all, but the vicar kindly gave me the keys a couple of days before the wedding so I could clean and decorate. It helped my nerves on the day, as I felt so comfortable there.
Q: Where did you hold your reception and what was it like?
A: The reception was held at the Bryn Howell Hotel in Llangollen, around 8 minutes drive from the church. It was unfortunate that the day was a bit gloomy (although thankfully it didn’t rain), and the lovely mountainous views couldn’t be seen due to the mist. We still had some lovely photos outside, in an open-top car though. The hotel had Christmas decorations up which included a huge fir tree where we did our line-up. We’ve got some beautiful photos from that. The staff couldn’t do enough to help us, and they made us feel like royalty for the day.
Q: Is there anything you would change, with hindsight?
A: Everything went like clockwork. Absolutely perfect. However I do regret not looking at Mum as I walked down the aisle with Dad – although its probably just as well as we would’ve been sobbing!!!
Q: What advice would you give to couples currently planning their wedding?
A: There’s light at the end of the tunnel! Keep at it; it’ll all be worth it in the end.
– Put your foot down and do what YOU want, not what others want you to do. It’s your day not anyone else’s.
– It’s worth paying for a good photographer who can stand his ground and organize your guests. There’s nothing worse than hanging around for people to appear when you’re having your photos taken.
– Choose your best man wisely. You need someone who is going to settle the nerves of the groom, and look after him – it shouldn’t be the other way around.
– Have a stiff drink before leaving the house – it really does settle your nerves.
– When you walk into the church, look around and take everything in. Don’t walk down with horse blinkers on!!!
– When you’re saying your vows look your partner in the eye. You’ll be surprised how many people look at their vicar instead!!!
– The day will fly, and you’re bound to forget certain things that happened. Get a good video guy so you can look back at the day.
– ENJOY IT – YOU’VE WORKED SO HARD FOR IT!!!!
Q: Is there any other detail that you would like to share?
A: Diary of the day:
We stayed at Mum and Dad’s the night before, and had a bottle of Champagne, which helped me sleep! Woke up at 7, and Mum brought a tray up to my room with a croissant, ham, cheese, a glass of Bucks Fizz, a red rose, and a card which read “To my darling daughter on your special day”. Needless to say I was searching for the Kleenex! When I went downstairs there were two bouquets of flowers and a gift from Simon, my soon to be husband. He had bought me a stunning white gold cross necklace with diamonds and a note saying “See you at the church.” Kleenex time again.
My bridesmaid arrived and we dashed upstairs to get ready, giggling like teenagers. It was all very much like a dream, it was real but it wasn’t happening??!! I felt like a princess when I walked down the stairs to show Dad, who by then had opened the cognac for us all to have a drink to settle our nerves. The car came for Mum and my bridesmaid, and 5 minutes later my car arrived. The neighbours had lined the road to watch and wave me off. Although the journey to the church took probably less than a couple of minutes it felt like a lifetime.
When we got to the church my heart was pounding, and although I’m usually a tearful person, I was determined that I wasn’t going to start crying, and that I was going to just enjoy it. The organist started up and everyone turned around and smiled. Simon turned around to look at me and started crying. Eeek. I got to the top of the aisle and held his hand. I haven’t a clue how I managed to compose myself so well! I sang my heart out to the hymns and enjoyed every second of the service. Everyone told me later that I was absolutely beaming throughout!
The wedding breakfast was outstanding, and the staff at the hotel were excellent. Simon was really nervous about the speeches but when he stood up he gave the most moving speech I’ve ever heard, and at that point I broke down! It threw me because my speech was next and I forgot everything I had planned to say (I hadn’t written anything down). So I stood up and spoke from my heart, which in the end was better.
The evening party went just as well as the daytime, and we got to bed at 4am!!! We were flying out to the Dominican Republic that morning and we managed to get 2 hours sleep (too shattered for anything else!).
I had booked a limo to pick us up to take us to the airport, and Simon knew nothing about it. His jaw dropped when it drove up. Mum and Dad saw us off with yet more confetti.
The honeymoon was lovely, we ate, drank, and slept for a week and came home on the twenty-third of December with lovely brown skin and had an excellent Christmas spent with family that had come for the wedding from all over the world. It was the first Christmas we’ve all been together for years.
It really does feel strange that after 10 years of being together I am now Simon’s wife. When we were on holiday I got talking to someone about Simon and for the first time said “My husband, Simon” and got goose pimples!