5 reasons Engaged Couples Should Take a Marriage Prep Class

Patrick and I just finished up our last marriage preparation class this past weekend.  To be married in our church we are required to take 2, 8 hour classes and meet with a married couple from the congregation.  I think this is probably one of the most important things you can do as an engaged couple to prepare for your wedding. After all, its about the union of two people before God, family and friends and the state.  You are promising to all of those people that you will be true to each other, in sickness and in health, good times and bad, as long as you both live.  I mean, that’s kind of a big deal.  However, today I feel like some people don’t take it as seriously as they should, or are not really prepared for the long road ahead- aka the rest of their life.

Obviously I’m not married yet, so I cant give you any advice or examples from a married persons perspective. But I can give you the perspective of a person who is 125 days away from promising those things to another person in front of the most important people in her life.  With the divorce rate at over 50% in the United States today, I can only hope that people really stop and consider these factors before they say “I Do.” Here are my five reasons I think all engaged couples should take a marriage preparation class while engaged.

One of my favorite quotes on marriage I've ever read. Marriage is a verb. WOW. This post has 5 awesome quotes on marriage...

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1 ::| Opportunity

Taking a marriage prep class gives you the opportunity to learn more about your significant other.  It brings up topics and questions that you might not have ever discussed or even thought were important things to know about each other. It helps each person share their views on different subjects and topics in a very laid back and focused setting. You don’t really have a way to avoid the questions or leave the room because you are there for the whole day.  It gives you distraction free time to learn and listen to your partner.

2::| Planning

Taking a marriage prep class helps you plan for your future.  For example, do you really know how many children your partner wants to have if any at all? Do you know how you will want to organize your finances? Do you know where you want to settle down and plant roots or do you want to move every 2 years to a new city? Taking these classes gives you an idea of what your partner wants compared to what you want. It helps you plan for your future together so you are on the same page. Obviously I know every couple will not always be on the same page and you can not predict the future, but I think it gives you a leg up on other couples who never even discuss these issues that could arise.

3::| An idea of reality

At the marriage prep classes we took we got to hear from real life couples who have gone through real life marriage issues.  They spoke about how not every day is unicorns and rainbows.  There are definitely going to be hard times, but they helped describe how they overcame those hard times.  A lot of people don’t like to show they are struggling with their marriage and hide their unhappiness.  I think that getting to listen to people who have gone through hard times and persevered is a great thing.  I feel like when you are engaged you are usually on top of the world. You can sometimes get wrapped up in the excitement of planning a wedding and all that comes with the engagement that you don’t actually stop and discuss some really important things.  But hearing from real life couples gives you an idea of the reality that marriage can be.

4::| Communication

Good communication in a relationship is usually a huge factor to its success.  If you are able to communicate properly to your partner your wants, needs, hopes and dreams and they are able to be receptive to them you will probably avert many distresses that others who can not communicate properly run into.  Marriage prep is a great way to communicate certain things with your partner that you might not otherwise have the opportunity or thought to do. It brings up many great topics and real life situations that not everyone can for see when they are engaged. My thought is, why not prevent a stressful or disastrous situation before it occurs if you have the chance?

5::| Don’t repeat history

I think this is the biggest kicker for me. I grew up in a home where my parents divorced when I was 11. I would say that it was extremely difficult on me as a child, but yet it has shaped the person I am today tremendously.  Studies have shown that people with divorced parents are at greater risk for divorce. I will not be part of that statistic.  I feel that my parents divorcing has shown me that divorce is just not an option.  I would never want to go through something like that nor have my future children experience something like that.  I think that marriage prep is a great thing for someone like me, who comes from a home with divorced parents and hasn’t always been raised in an environment of a healthy marriage.  There are so many things things these days that are working against you, why not try to be prepared and ready to defeat them.

So that’s my two cents about marriage preparation. I hope that if you ever take anything away from my blog about wedding planning it is that I strongly recommend taking a class. If not for yourselves, for the sake of your partner and your relationship.  After all the pretty dresses, and decorations and dancing is over …

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Wedding Update {Blush and Gold Mood Board}

Blush and gold mood board

Sources

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Hi friends! I’m back today to share a bit of wedding related stuff with you. The main question I get from people when I tell them that I am getting married is, what are your colors? Its important to get a good idea of the main color and a few accent colors you are wanting to use for your wedding as soon as you can. There are so many things that you will be doing when planning your wedding and knowing what colors you want will help a ton.

I always described to people that I want very light, romantic colors for my wedding. I have always been drawn to soft pinks, blush, pale greens, whites, creams and I added gold in for a bit of a glamorous accent.  Even before I was engaged my Pinterest board was full of these colors in flowers and dresses and décor. {Don’t judge me for having a wedding board before I was engaged, you all know you do it!}

So to better explain and describe to you what I’m planning I put together a little mood board of how I would like my décor to look. I have many DIY projects on my list and cant wait to share them with you.

The bridesmaid dress in the center are the actual dresses my girls picked out and I couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful dress. It’s going to look so amazing on each girl and I cant wait to see them in it. I will be using a lot of babies breath in my décor especially for my bridesmaids bouquets.  For my bouquet I dream of something similar to #2 big and romantic flowers. I also envision lots of wildflowers and light colored roses for the table décor.  The barn is beautiful in its self, so it really wont need a lot of elaborate flower displays, which I love.

So my friends, that is what I’m feeling for my wedding décor. I’m pretty much in love. What do you think?

//Inspire Me Please\\ //

Engagement Photos & 5 Helpful Tips

Hello lovely friends! Sorry I have been MIA from the blog lately. I have been busy this past few weeks with a ton of wedding things. Mostly for my big brother, Alex’s wedding. He and his now wife, Megan got married this past weekend and I was so happy and honored to be a part of their special day. The weather was perfect, the dinner and dance was so fun! Coco might have had a bit too much fun, but it was so worth it!

Congrats to by brother and new sister. I wish them a life filled with so much love and happiness….and babies…I mean I think I’m ready to be an aunt again, hint hint 😉

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As far as our wedding progress is going, let me tell you, there is so much to think about when it comes to planning a wedding. I’m trying not to get too stressed out, but we only have 277 days until the big day. But whose counting? Its not like I have an app on my phone or anything 😉 Pretty excited if you cant tell.

One of the first things we wanted to check off our to do list was hiring a photographer. Personally, this is something that I consider very important. I have had people tell me that I don’t want to spend a lot of money on a photographer because we will probably look at the pictures a few times the first year and then they will collect dust. That statement is probably more true than I would like to admit.  That being said it is still something that is important to me, along with saving money so we did shop around quite a bit. I also got a lot of personal references for our photographer. She has worked with a few of my friends for their engagement and wedding photos as well as a few families that I know. I was confident that we would get exactly what we were looking for from her and at a very reasonable price.

Ill share some of the pictures we took and a few things I took away from the whole  experience.

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{Tip No. 1}

Location

One thing that is important is choosing the right location. I wanted to choose a location that was meaningful to us as well as one that had great photo opportunities.  Most photographers will take you to as many locations as you like, or as the amount of time that you contracted allows.  Our photographer was great and so flexible. The location in the picture above is at what we call the Viaduct. Its a railroad bridge near a farm that Patrick’s family owns so it was special to us. Pat spends a lot of time there in his tractor and I occasionally probablyshouldmoreoften ride along with him. And it makes for a few really cool pictures. The one below is one of my personal favorites. I recommend choosing a location that is meaningful to you like the place you met, or a place a significant event happened.

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{Tip  No. 2}

Attire

This was a hard one for me.  I had so many different outfits picked out and that I brought along and I only ended up changing once. The one major piece of advice that I have for what to wear is to not go too out of the box or your comfort zone. You should wear something that represents you. If you only own and wear sundresses…you should wear a sundress. If you have never worn a dress or heels before, I don’t recommend the day you take your engagement pictures being the first time.  Also, try not to go too trendy with your attire. Stick to classic looks that will translate well  through the pictures for  years to come. You don’t want to look back in 10 20 50 years and say why the heck did I wear that?!55afbe0349a14fcb6b7ad8c0841c5eaf

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{Tip No.3}

Accessories

I’m not huge into accessories. I have a few classic piece of jewelry that I wear pretty much every day so I chose to stick to those pieces for my pictures. I wore a beautiful pearl necklace that my Uncle Ricky bought for me along with my pearl earrings.  I recommend keeping your accessories as simple as possible. I think a pretty scarf or jacket would be totally cute for a spring or fall pictures.  Which also brings me to another point, weather. I recommend taking your pictures on a cooler over cast day. We took ours on a hot like 85degree sunny and humid day, which didn’t do great things for my hair. You cant really tell, but it was curled at one point. So I don’t recommend that. And I have heard that shade is better for picture taking than the bright sun shining down on you. I think that you could get some great shots around dusk/ sundown if you are taking them outside in the country.

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{Tip No.4}

Act Natural

Obviously you want your pictures to represent the couple that you are. I’m not going to lie…its a bit awkward at first because you are going to over think the whole thing to try and get the perfect smile or positioning.  But after a while we just pretended like the photographer wasn’t even there. Like the picture below, Pat was probably telling me something funny or cute and it made for a really great picture because this is my natural smile/ laugh.  So I recommend that you just hang out, have fun and act natural.
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{Tip No.5}

Try Something Different

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This is one thing that I’m glad we took into account before we took our pictures. We wanted to do something different and cool that would make for a really good picture. I love the shot above, who would have thought climbing up the side of a railroad bridge would make for such a good picture. Not me, especially because I’m afraid of heights and there were bugs, not my cup of tea. But I love it and am so glad we did it. So I recommend you try something different and if it seems like it could be stupid, you should do it anyway because it might turn out to be your favorite. 2adf68916d191b66a588b9f5c94c007c

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Overall I’m very happy with how our pictures turned out and I cant wait for our big day! Do you have any tips for taking engagement or wedding pictures? I would love to hear from you.

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P.S.  If you are in the WI area and interested in the photographer…here’s her site
{Friends In Photography}

5 tips engagement photos

//Linking Up\\

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Love

I literally can not describe the emotions and feelings that are running through me.  I am still in shock, by the fact that I am the luckiest.girl.alive. I officially get to spend the rest of my life with the love of my life.  He really is the sweetest, kindest, most gentle hearted person I know.   Not everyone gets to see the sides of him that I do. I am so blessed to have been able to find someone like him to share my thoughts, successes, failures and my everything with.  He is my everything, and he chose me. I thank God everyday for bringing us together.

He proposed in the most perfect way, and it was just so…us. A place where we have so many memories and where I really fell in love with him.  It wasn’t at a sports game, or in front of a crowd of people. Not that there is anything wrong with doing it that way, but it’s just not us.  It was just the two of us, as we are, and ever will be.

I’m so excited to start planning our perfect day and to dream about our forever.  I am truly one of the lucky ones.  I don’t really know what I did to deserve him, but I promise to be the best wife I can, forever, and ever.

Here is picture of the most beautiful ring I have ever seen

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Of course we were too excited to get a picture of the two of us last night. But we will get one soon.  I can’t wait to share all my wedding details with you all. It’s truly going to be amazing.

Oh and here is “our song” which happened to be playing during the proposal.

I can’t stop smiling 🙂

 

 

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