Monday, September 24, 2012

Post-proposal: First 3 Steps

It's been a whole 6 months since I last updated my wedding blog!
Oh myyyy what happened to the "documenting my wedding journey" plan???

I can't believe that it's been HALF A YEAR! :O

Been meaning to update so, so, so many times, but a lot has happened and there would always be something more important (and urgent) to look into first. Life's been seriously hectic that I hardly even had the time to update the main blog.

For all my dear readers who have been asking me to update and faithfully coming back to this space, I wanna say a million thank you's for being so super awesome, and sorry for being MIA for half a year! A LOT has happened in the past 6 months, so I shall divide all the updates into different blog posts :) 

So, in my absence, I have officially finished my 3-year degree at Taylor's Lakeside (WOOHOO!!!), 2-month internship at Streething (COME ON!), organizing and leading the most awesome cluster (:P) of all- The MINT cluster at Emerge Kuala Lumpur for 2 months (AHHH YEAHHH). Handling the 3 above was enough to take up 99% of my time and energy. Some called me crazy for picking so many things up when my wedding was just around the corner. Perhaps, I WAS crazy, but I'm glad I was as my life was completely changed :)

Now that I'm done with everything else, yours truly is currently and officially a full-time blogger + wedding planner :D I'm just so so glad that I can finally have the time to FULLY focus on the little details of the wedding 100%. It's such joy to go to sleep with wedding ideas being the last thing on my mind, and waking up knowing it's another exciting day of planning our special day!

My morning exercise.
Everyday is an adventure!

Planning and organizing events is nothing new to Boon and I. Him being in the project management field and  handling multi-million worth of projects, while I've planned loads of birthday surprises, etc etc hahahahahaha now I feel so insignificant :P Plus, the idea of  us doing this together, for us, is just really meaningful. So we decided to take our wedding planning into our own hands without a wedding planner, and build everything from scratch.

Since we're the ones planning OUR own wedding, the OCD in us we never knew existed, surfaced. Aside from the occasional, inevitable disagreements, planning our own wedding has been real fun and exciting! It's a good feeling knowing both of us are serious, and in it to make it beautiful :)

Here's where I update from where I left off. Which was basically nothing yet la hahaha. I documented everything in my phone but now that all my photos are all gone, I can only blog with words which is making me feel really depressed right now :( I'm sorry guys...I wish I could have my photos back and share them with all of you :'(

Anyways, will try to make it as descriptive as possible.

Step #1: Choose the Date!

So after all the happy celebrations and surreal feelings, we got straight down to business. The most important FIRST THING that any couple must do before planning all else, is deciding the date! This is clearly a no-brainer, no?

But believe me, many couples get overjoyed about their engagement, that they forget to quickly secure a date for their wedding. Without a wedding date, everything else cannot get started! And especially if you happen to get married in a crazy dragon year like us where couple book churches, hotels and restaurants 2 years in advance, securing a date quick is super crucial!

We really wanted to not delay too long from the engagement to the wedding, as we're really excited about this new life together and also because many married couples advised us not to have too big a gap, as waiting for too long could dampen the excitement of the couple towards their big day.

However, as much as we wanted to get married earlier, we couldn't as yours truly was still studying and I really wanna get everything done and over with before starting a new chapter in my life. Can you imagine needing to attend classes the day after my wedding??!

So with a bit of a discussion with both sides of the family, and after doing all the research on whether the date is a good/bad date to get married (Sigh...Chinese superstitions. Better check, else we MIGHT need to change the date after all is being said and done...which will be a pain. So better do your research, guys! You don't wanna upset your relatives, who will then upset your parents, who will then upset you), we decided to make this day the most special day of our lives!

We decided on the wedding date in less than 2 weeks as we knew we couldn't mess with the Dragon year. Very quickly, the next thing we did:

#Step 2: Book the Pastor!

Having a Christian wedding is a MUST for us. Not because we have to, but because that's how we both want to get married. And to have that, we needed to make sure that our pastor could officiate our wedding...else, we would have changed the date to suit pastor's schedule. That's how much we wanted our dear pastor to marry the both of us.

Because of our wedding, our pastor had to re-schedule his flight and return days earlier from his trip just to make sure he could be there at our big day. We're both really touched and blessed to say the least :") So so blessed.

So, our pastor is set to officiate our wedding! What an honor :) From here, we started planning!

Step #3: Scout and Book the Venue

Holy Matrimony

We explored with the idea of having a garden or beach wedding, as outdoor weddings are undeniably beautiful. Boon was more keen on that than I, as I'm really not a risk-taker. At least not for our wedding! But after some discussion, we both agreed that the Malaysian weather is not just HAWT, but super unpredictable! The last thing we want is to have our guests suffer under the scorching sun, sweat and smell, or worse, drenched from the rain. Another factor was also the capacity of most beaches and gardens. Our guest list is quite long, and we definitely cannot fit 400+ pax at a garden.

So we decided to get married at our favourite place- our church.

This was the beautiful wedding of Kee Wee & May Shen :)

Thank God the slot was available, and that the wedding coordinator of CHCKL, Eunice Wong was super pleasant to deal with :) Since the confirmation, she has met us up several times to do some follow-up on our wedding prep progress, making sure we are on the right track towards our big day!

Dinner Reception

Before Boon even proposed, each time we chatted casually about weddings and stuff, I would seriously look him in the eyes and tell him that I WILL NOT hold my dinner reception at a Chinese Restaurant. This is because I've had several bad experiences at Chinese restaurant wedding dinners where the waiters were blur and rude, the crowd was super noisy as the floor wasn't carpeted. Every single movement caused noises, and the whole restaurant ended up sounding like a wet market. Lousy audio visuals, and the worst part is that the whole place is too noisy for anyone to hear the speeches made by the Bride & Groom. Because most Chinese restaurants serve good food (at least better than hotels), people just concentrate on eating and nothing else.

But, the thing about holding dinner receptions at hotels is that it definitely costs way more. Having worked in so many events before, my favourite ballroom is still Hilton KL, as I love the modern yet simple set up. But after we found out about the cost, we immediately eliminated the idea. It was crazy and way beyond our budget, as we're also renovating our condo at the same time. After searching high and low for good and affordable hotels yet to no avail , we decided we would to try searching for a good and decent Chinese Restaurant.

After asking most people and couples who have gotten married before us, most of them agree that we are paying hotels for the set up and ambience, while the truth is, most guests look for good food as they don't really bother about the ambience. To choose between ambience and good food, good food would win hands down! So that definitely gave us some hope :')

After searching for the best (and STILL AVAILABLE. The Dragon Year is seriously crazy!) Chinese restaurants, we settled with Grand Imperial!  We really love the ballroom set-up and ambience, amazing food, and great service. Liaising with them has been so far, so good. Things didn't turn out as bad as I thought as this place really changed my mindset about most Chinese restaurants :)

So these were the first 3 things we did right after our engagement!
Will update the rest of the "steps" in the next post! Stay tuned :)