To those of you that are getting married soon, I will pass along these pieces of wedding advice:
Keep this really clear in your mind: at the end of your wedding day, you’ll be married, and that’s really all that matters. If the flowers are wilted and the food is cold — at the end of the day, you’ll still be married.
Something will go wrong on your wedding day. Count on it. Get used to that now.
On your wedding day, you can ask anybody who has had a wedding to do anything for you, and they will be happy to oblige. You see, they remember what a zoo it was when they got married.
Make someone who is not in the wedding party and who is not in either family your designated feeder. Otherwise, you Will. Not. Eat. There will be a zillion people who you really like who will all want to talk to you. If you are left to your own devices, you won’t remember to eat. So have someone chase you around with a plate of food.
Going along with the above, eat well before you start getting ready for the ceremony! Your designated feeder might flake.
Sign up for an expensive pampering session (massage, facial, hot tub, whatever) the day before the wedding. You need some Quality Time away from friends and relatives and the chaos that surrounds the event. The pampering will help you relax and unwind a little — but make sure to make it something scheduled and expensive so that you can extract yourself from the chaos. “Sorry, gotta go — I’ve got a massage appointment at 2 o’clock and if I miss it, I still have to pay for it!”
Think about what traditions are important to you and keep them. Think about which are not important, and feel free to dump them. For example, it may not make sense to have dancing at your outdoor, afternoon reception… so have croquet instead.
If you don’t want to spend tons of time the day of your wedding taking formal photos consider scheduling a photo shoot the day before the ceremony for just the two of you. It can turn out to be one of the happiest, giddiest hours of your life. It is just the two of you and a photographer. You will feel really comfortable with, all the cellphones and to-do lists put away. You will be in your wedding clothes at your wedding site, with a (second) set of flowers adorning you, together, and have no expectations to fill except to smile and be happy.
Provided disposable cameras or asked people to bring their own cameras empty — provide the memory cards. Collect everything at the end, and process it. This works out reasonably well except you can get SO MANY pictures that it is hard to choose between them.
If your ceremony and reception are at the same location ask your caterers to bring food and drinks up & down the receiving line. Standing in the receiving line is really boring, and people will probably start to get hungry by then. If you take pictures between the ceremony and reception, see if you can get your caterers to pass out hors d’oevres then as well.
The tradition is for the bride and groom to leave immediately after the reception. You may want to stay because your family will have all kinds of fun hanging out together the next day.
Remember this is your day. You have worked months even years planning this day now is the time to relax and enjoy!