13 The vows – Sam’s Wedding Diary

Written by    Last updated: September 9, 2006

I take it back. Arranging a wedding is stressful. The last two weeks have been so hectic, anyone would think the wedding was next week instead of four months away. I blame the groom of course. After working overseas for two months Jamie returned to London for just two weeks before he had to go overseas again so I took the opportunity to arrange as many wedding‐related appointments as possible.

Poor Jamie. He thought he was returning for a relaxing break and instead was confronted with a diary overflowing with appointments to arrange everything from the order of service, to invites and wedding rings.…

We began by having dinner with my cousin, the vicar who is going to marry us, to arrange the order of service, hymns prayers and readings. Jamie agreed that I didn’t have to ‘obey’ him (he says I never have in the past so why should a ring make a difference), but for some unknown reason he wants us to learn our vows rather than repeat them after the vicar.

In theory this sounds very romantic and quite simple, as the lines are quite short. In reality, I’m already having nightmares about forgetting the words or even saying the wrong name (like Ross in Friends) resulting in the whole wedding ending up in complete chaos! Nevertheless, I said I’d be willing to give it a go after the vicar said she’d hold up cue cards!

We agreed on readings and music quite quickly ‐ if you’re stuck and want to see a selection of hymns and readings etc. take a look at Confetti’s selection. We did disagree on a few minor matters such as the order of the wedding breakfast ‐ I want the speeches at the beginning so the best man and father can enjoy the meal without being stressed about stage fright, but he wants them at the end as a sort of finale.
But at least there was never a worry about him disagreeing about the bridesmaids dresses. He only really paid attention to the bill and the weight of the material when he went to pick up the silk (I finally bought it from a shop in Soho off Berwick Street).


Choosing our wedding rings was fun (although not as easy as I’d imagined when you’re trying to match it with your engagement ring). A nice touch someone suggested is having the inside engraved with your initials and date of the wedding.

The invites have proved more complicated and we’re still procrastinating over the size, layout, colour of the invites (although now he’s gone overseas again I think this is up to me now)! For an idea of what’s on offer have a look at Confetti’s selection of designs or if you prefer you can even design your own.


Not surprisingly one of the issues we’ve agreed on most has been choosing the wine and bubbly ‐ we both agreed that we should taste as much as possible before making a decision! I was planning to take a trip over to France to see how much I can save on wine and fizz, but having talked to a few friends it appears some of the supermarket chains have competitive deals, as they buy in bulk for the vineyards direct. With this in mind we’ve been working our way up and down the liquor aisles in the local supermarket and found quite a few we like. We even enlisted the help of my sisters and brother in law as chief tasters to check our choice meets approval.

Funnily enough they seemed quite happy to spare the time and have been enthusiastic participators in tasting sessions. The only problem has been by the end of each session we can’t remember which were the favourites, so we end up starting from scratch again!

It’s certainly tough being a wedding planner, but someone has to do it! With the war in full flow I’m not complaining! I’m relieved that Jamie is no longer in the military, but my thoughts lie with those who have partners involved in the conflict. Of course the main concern is that they return safely… whenever that may be. But imagine those who have not only had to say goodbye to their loved ones, but also face the added stress of postponing wedding plans.

Thankfully I’m not one of them but some of Jamie’s close friends are out there and all I have to say is hurry home soon! The bubbly is on ice and the stag do is only a couple of months away!

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