Thursday, December 26, 2013


With Christmas day behind you, it's time to think of, that's right, leftovers. Not the leftovers you might be conjuring up, but rather spiritual leftovers. Between the family, food, and fun of the holidays, it can feel as though the day flies by. There are special moments, memories, and feelings associated with the holidays that you might long to keep with you for more than a day. That's where leftovers come in.
On holidays and other special occasions, you often feel your spiritual best. You are moved to give more generously, feel more compassionately, act more kindly, or forgive more easily. Whatever it is about special days in the year, you get in touch with your inner being and take stock of how you can improve yourself, if only for one day. But what if you could bottle up these precious moments and compassionate feelings and take it with you as you plan your wedding or on your life's journey? You might begin to feel as though every day were a special one. You would see your life improve, as well as the relationships with those around you. A simple shift in attitude and mood can do that.
But how, you ask? Leftovers. On the days you feel a spiritual and emotional high and where your life is open to giving, take a moment to soak it up. Breathe it all in and then write it down. Pen the magic of the day; how you felt, the emotions swirling about and then commit to living another day feeling as blessed as you did just then. Put it somewhere close, but safe, so you can refer back to it, keeping those feelings fresh in your mind, body, and soul. It may even be helpful to have a token reminder, like a bracelet or a pin, on you at all times, so the feelings never leave. The holidays come and go, but the spirit of the day doesn't have to, if only you choose to keep it going.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Happy Holidays

Ahhh. The holidays are here at last. It's time to relax and enjoy the season with your loved ones. And while the movies occasionally make the holidays look easy and enjoyable, sometimes it's these moments that prove to be a challenge. Let's face it, when you're in a room full of family members, everybody is going to want to hear how your wedding planning is going. Some of them will want all the details and others may be happy with a simple few, but they will all have an opinion on your decisions and ideas. So give yourself a present this holiday season: enjoy it wedding free.
It's great to be able to talk about your wedding preparations with the ones you love, but you've been doing that since your engagement. And with so much to do, it can be hard to separate yourself from it even briefly. It's important and even necessary to take a break from wedding chatter so you can re-energize and reconnect with the people and the world around you. The holidays are a special time each year, where you have the opportunity to do that.
Taking a vacation from your wedding planning means you have more time to listen to what's happening in other people's lives, to let go, relax and not worry, and to just be in the moment. It means not having to deal with the less than supportive comments that may come with some of your relatives. And if those comments will come, whether you discuss your wedding or not, choose to live above them and not get pulled into their negativity. It's one of the hardest things to do, but putting on your virtual armor and participating in the joy of the holiday instead, will make you a stronger, happier person.
So put down your to-do list and pick up the cookie cutters or play out in the snow. Enjoy the beautiful season, the love around you, and the special moments you can create right now. Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Keeping Family Drama at Bay

Everybody has an emotional history with their family members. It's no different for the bride. Ideally you get along with the majority of your relatives, but occasionally there is someone in the family who gets under your skin. And even if you get along swell with everyone, maybe there is tension between other family members. So what do you do to keep the family on their best behavior on your big day?
Start by discussing your hopes for a happy and peaceful wedding day with the potential "drama makers." Keep in mind your "I statements" from our previous blog. You want to show understanding, but at the same time let them know how important putting aside their differences for your happiness is to you. You might begin a conversation with, "I realize you and Aunt Gertrude don't always get along, but I do hope my wedding will be one filled with happiness, fun, and peace for the entire family." There is no blaming or negativity in that statement. It simply reflects your feelings and wishes.
Next, make sure to arrange the guest seating appropriately. Seat family members who get along well together. But don't put relatives who don't get along on the opposite side of the room if they will feel left out or not part of the family. You want to be respectful, while making them feel comfortable, as well. Also, appoint a wedding day "mediator" to act on your behalf if tensions start to rise. It's best to choose a non-family member or someone who is friendly with both sides. That will help eliminate the "you always side with them," argument and hopefully, keep you out of the mix.
Follow these steps to help reduce the potential for family feuds on your wedding day and then let it go. Ultimately, individuals are responsible for their own decisions and actions, so fretting about what might happen is futile. Enjoy your special day and let someone else worry about extinguishing any drama that might pop up.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Staying Positive

Now that you're engaged, you might find that with so much on your plate, there are days you feel low energy and zapped of your motivation. So what can you do to stay inspired and keep a positive mindset? One good practice is creating and reciting positive affirmations. Affirmations are short positive self-statements. Using these statements helps you focus on the things you want most while planning your wedding or on the big day itself.
Examples of affirmations for the bride include:
  • I am a beautiful bride
  • I feel calm and confident as I plan my wedding
  • I am creating a memorable wedding with the resources I have
  • My wedding day is as wonderful as I imagine it
  • I surround myself with people who support my wedding day dreams
The affirmations you create are specific to your needs and situation. Simply write them in the positive and stated in the present tense. Reciting them daily keeps you focused on where you want your energy to be. It is not necessarily "convincing" yourself of something you are not; rather it is shifting your attention to the emotional or physical state you want to be in. Such self-statements reminds you to take the action you need to make your affirmation a reality. A note on affirmations: they work well if you are having a minor setback, but in general have good self-esteem and emotional health. If you struggle with esteem issues or suffer from depression or excessive anxiety, it's best to seek out professional help to ensure you're on the right path towards healing.

Monday, December 2, 2013

On Second Marriages

Marriage is as unique as the person you decide to wed. So whether this is your first marriage or the second time around, your wedding is meant to be meaningful and memorable just the same. If this is your second marriage, look inside to see how you and your life has changed. Your tastes may have shifted and your ideas for a wedding may be completely different from your previous marriage. Maybe you prefer something smaller or more spiritual, or perhaps you're considering a destination wedding. Whatever your thoughts, remember to get your groom's opinion, as well.
If this is your second wedding and your fiance's first, you may think he wants a big affair to remember. And while that is a possibility, it's just as plausible he would be happy with an intimate gathering of family and close friends. It's important not to try and "mind read" here. Some brides may feel compelled to go all out with a big wedding party since he hasn't experienced it in the past. They might feel he deserves it or should have this grand event that every bride dreams of, even if they don't care to have another fancy celebration. A good rule of thumb is not to assume you know what's best for your groom.
Talk to your fiance about your wedding plans. Tell him what you had in the past and what your thoughts are on your upcoming nuptials. Then see what his ideas are. Instead of asking if your fiance wants this or that, ask open ended questions. Ask him to describe his perfect wedding day or what his hopes and dreams are to make it memorable, happy, and fun. Then try and work together on creating a day you both will find special and unique to your union together.