Bride to Be Diaries: Our Spring Bride is Having Hair Issues

Good morning everyone!

Our Spring Bride, Ali, is having hair issues! But the plus side, there is not long to go to the big day, and we are getting excited!!!
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Our Spring Bride is Having Hair Issues

Hello beautiful ladies and gents …
I cannot believe, reading back over my old posts, how quickly time has gone! And I know, I know you all told me so, but jeeeeez louise?
When we got engaged we had 20 months until the big day… 20… we now have 4. 117 days!
With a house move, Christmas and New Year in the middle of it too! Madness.
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We’re pretty much all on track. As you’ll know if you read some of my previous posts, I have lots all ready sorted. I have though, bought another new pair of shoes… they are my final official pair though. And they do say 3rd time lucky? Haha I’ve just got to work out what my girls wear now, as I have one 5ft 11, one 5ft 2 and one 5ft nothing haha! Nightmare.
I had all my gorgeous girls down this weekend for our hair trials. Getting them all in one place at one time is a bit of a mare. Ones living in London, the other in Worcester, the other 20 minutes away but with my favourite tiny diva (2 year old Layla) … so yeah, not straight forward ha! Also, my amazing friend Charlotte is doing our hair (she’s incredible and self taught through YouTube tutorials!) and she lives in Cheltenham. I love a challange!
Anyway, difficulties aside, I did manage to get them all here Saturday and we had the BEST day. Charlotte tried a different up do on each bridesmaid and a few loose curled styles on me and we just laughed and gossiped and ate snacks all day! We had such a good time I totally forgot to take any pictures! But I have some that I pinned as ideas, and they were very similar, and my friend Michaela took a few.
My hair, is my ultimate pride and joy! Like, if my hair isn’t ok, I’m not ok. You know? So how I wore my hair on the big day was actually a bigger deal to me than my make up, or ever dare I say it… my dress. (I hear echoing gasps all across Wales haha)
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The biggest issue I have (which is entirely my own fault) is that I’d set my heart on a long flowing curls down style, with braids and flowers and sparkles… then I cut all my hair off. Like an idiot.
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Themost annoying thing being, I cut it back in March to give it a year to grow through healthier for the Wedding… its now November (as I’m writting, sure it’ll be December while you read… and that makes me feel a bit ill) and has it grown? Has it heck. Not a stitch. If anything, I think it was in better condition before I cut it. I feel like it’s mocking me… paying me back for the years of peroxide damage!
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So a lot of the styles I’d set my hopes on had to be shelved… I did buy some extensions so we can do a loose, fally down style… and I love what I’ve found, so I guess it isn’t all that bad.
The next big thing is for Mr to get his butt in gear and sort their suits! He’s adamant that he’s getting them in the January sales (he love a bargain) and I just really hopes he finds what he’s looking for. Because lord knows I’ll never hear the end of it if he doesn’t haha!
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It’s all very exciting this wedding business, isn’t it?
Lots of love ’till next time!
Ali, x

Bride to Be Diaries: Introducing our First Bride and Groom Bloggers -The Carnival Couple!

Morning!
If you’re anything like me, I bet you have have been itching to meet the new new Bride and Groom to Be blogger after meeting the gorgeous Jenine, our Tinder Bride!

Well, the wait is over! We are very excited to introduce our first little bride and groom to be team; The Carnival Couple, Lowri and Simon!

Wonder why they’re called this? Want to know more about them? Want to know all about the engagement? Well read on Cwtchers, read on…..

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The Carnival Couple

Hello fellow Cwtch-ers!

We are Lowri and Simon, aka (from here-on-in) the Carnival Couple!

WinterLowri: We are both teachers, in the same school; Simon is head of ICT, Computer science and media, and I teach Law and Sociology. Both of us are pretty active and love spending time together, no matter what we are doing, as such, we will be writing our blogs together so that you get an all-round view of our wedding planning from a his-and-hers perspective, and we can’t wait to share it all with you!

The pair of us are in our 30s and have done all manner of things before we returned to teaching, so our interests are pretty varied. We are hoping that our true personalities will shine through on our big day this August. Our aim is to make our day as fun and memorable as possible, with a carnival theme running throughout, hence our Cwtch name!

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When people say it was ‘love at first sight’, or ‘I knew they were the one’, I used to roll my eyes at the clichéd nonsense of it all. However, turning up, as a supply teacher, the last thing I expected to find in a school was my ‘dream man’. Amazingly, my ‘dream man’ had the same idea when he saw me, but that doesn’t mean things were easy, and it took us a full five months of teenaged-style butterflies and friends playing cupid before we were finally together.

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Fast forward to August 31st 2016 and a very oddly behaved dream man had enticed me down to the beach in Southerndown for a walk, with the promise that I could wear my new wellies and that he would treat me to faggots and peas in our favourite pub after. What girl could refuse?! It is here I pass you to Simon, as he had much more of an idea as to what was happening than me!

Simon:  Ok, I’ll set the scene, I knew I wanted to marry Lowri after she made me laugh so hard that I had to stop and kneel down for a minute, the fact that she managed to do this half the way up Pen-Y Fan in a torrential rain storm just sealed the deal.

I decided to pop the question at the Walled Garden in Southerndown, one of our favourite places (If you’ve never been, go there on a sunny afternoon and you won’t regret it). It took three months of planning, 7 meters of bunting, 15 cheesy photos, 236 tea lights, a classy picnic of olives, cured meats, scotch eggs and pork scratchings, three bottles of champagne and four of our closest friends in hi-vis jackets blocking entrances and hiding in bushes, all to help a very disorganised man propose in a pretty romantic way.

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I’m not going to lie, it was the most nerve wracking thing I have ever done but I loved every second of it, apart from the bit where Lowri, upon seeing the massive pathway of candles, whispered to me that we should leave as we were gate crashing someone’s party! It was only when she saw the pictures of some of our best moments hanging amongst the bunting on the wall did it finally click that this may just be a party for us. Well I’m pleased to report she didn’t hesitate in saying yes and this new adventure started… planning a wedding!

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With just six months to go until our big day, plans are well underway, we have lots to do and think about. We truly want a wedding that reflects our personalities, passions and love for each other, even if it means having to make a lot of the things we need ourselves, although come to think about it, isn’t that half the fun?

However, before we start all that crafting, I’m pretty sure I’m still waiting for those faggots and peas!

Yeeeeeaaaay! Aren’t they wonderful! And a carnival theme!?! We are bursting to find out more! Stay tuned for the next instalment in a few weeks x

Bride to Be Diaries: The Crafty Bride is Having Nightmares!

Oh our poor lovely Crafty Bride, Katie, is having trouble! 

Those mental, crazy dreams have arrived, and they’re anything but fun (although, I admit, I found them funny. Sorry Katie!)  Ive been there, in fact, many have! My worst one was I kept showing up tot the wrong place, getting back in the car and going from venue to venue trying to find everyone!

Lets hope they subside so Katie can crack on with her awesome crafting and planning.  Over to you lovely…..

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Hello everyone! Well, the last few weeks have been rather bitter sweet for me in terms of wedding planning truth be told.

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Good news is my gorgeous veil finally arrived in the post last week, (to which I’m currently resisting the urge to wearing round the house it whilst doing my hoovering!)
Bad news is, in the last month alone I have had a total of 3 wedding nightmares, all ranging from one catastrophe to another, all occurring on our wedding day.

My first dream a few weeks ago consisted on me walking down the aisle on the big day, all dolled up and looking lovely, only to arrive at the end of the altar to my mother in place of my Registrar! I looked at my mother in awe and said “Mam where’s the registrar” to which she replied calmly “I don’t know love, she didn’t turn up” By the way she was acting you’d swear we were waiting at a bus stop, and the next one will be along shortly!

I naturally panicked and started to wig out over the fact that my husband to be had already seen me in my dress and I was at the point of no return as far as superstitions go! I them storm off and grab my friend David from his seat and put him in front of us demanding that because he has an A-Level in R.E he must perform the ceremony! At that point even my brain had enough of my rant and I finally woke up.

Panic stricken I frantically searched though my emails looking for our registrar receipt checking what time and date I had booked her for the day! … 1 hour later (I really need to sort out my inbox!) I finally find it only to notice … I can’t see a wedding time agreed on my receipt.

I’m having full palpitations at this point! Stressing that my registrar won’t turn up at the right time! Of course this would happen to me on a Sunday when the local council is closed, unable for me to call them! Those 24 hours were very long to say the least … I honestly had visions of them not being free until 6pm on the day and we’d have to have our reception with no wedding and get married at county hall the next day in my PJ’s!

However the Crisis was averted the next day, I spoke to the lovely lady in the council and she reassured me that I booked her for 12pm (as I had thought) She sounded like she had encountered many mad brides like me before … Lucky for her! … That was just my first dream!

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The Second dream I had; I was getting ready with my mum on the morning of our big day, and I’m frantically searching for my undergarments, bra, and knickers etc, to my amazement, I didn’t pack them!

Another freak out ensues; I’m frantically searching and shouting at my mum “I can’t go down the aisle commando!” After trying on all the bras I could find from my guests, this dream finished with my bridesmaid Rebecca coming to my rescue, driving me home in my rollers and PJ’s just to get my underwear; of course we stopped for a well deserved McDonalds on the way back!

This dream was the funniest of the three, this scenario was very familiar. A few years ago during my bridesmaid Carrie-Anne’s big day, one of her bridesmaids on the eve of the wedding, realised whilst having a drink in the pub with the rest of the bridal party that she didn’t pack her underwear for the wedding in her overnight bag. So off we went; gone midnight, me, her, and the bride to be, squeezed on my little car with bag of greasy chips in hand, back to her house on the other side of Swansea to fetch her knickers!

We did laugh about it at the time and said this could be a new wedding tradition for us, I think my mind was trying to remind me of our pact.

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My third dream was just as wacky; I dreamt that Aled and I were reading our vows, when a random bloke gate crashed my wedding, proper wedding movie cliché style! During the vows where the registrar says “Does anyone know of any reasons why these two persons cannot be wed?” he storms in saying that he objects, and that the wedding can’t go on because Aled got one question wrong in our wedding interview a few months prior. This revelation effectively stops the wedding dead in its tracks, the registrar says that she cannot continue until this reason is investigated!

Well needless to say I end up rugby tackling the bloke to the ground bludgeoning him to death with my wedding bouquet, following that my wedding party and I were all sitting at the wedding breakfast all cool as cucumbers, as if nothing had happened, continuing to eat and perform the speeches, whilst the corpse of the rude man lay lifeless on the floor in front of the top table being stepped over by the waiters serving food to our guests! Needless to say after that dream I’ve put my ushers on high alert asking them to check people when they turn up!

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There’s still Seven months left, I dread to think what other weird and wonderful dreams my mind will construct, hopefully Father Christmas will get me a Dream Analysis & meanings book so I can work them out as i go along. I hope I’m not the only bride that has come across this, and that this isn’t a sign that I’m slowly losing my mind, and I’ll have to re-arrange my wedding ceremony to take place in Cefn Coed psychiatric hospital!

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Oh poor Katie! I think maybe you need a little time out, a couple of non wedding days perhaps! Get some rest and then crack on again!
Hope you get some sweet dreams soon!! x

 

 

 

Bride To Be Diaries: Our Graceful Bride’s Hen Don’t

My hen do was one of the best weekends of my life. My sister did an amazing job and when it came time for me to return the favour I found it so much pressure make it as special as my one was. Today Our Graceful Bride tells us all about her hen do. Take it away Vicky. 

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Our Graceful Bride

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Hen Don’t

Before anyone gets too concerned, this isn’t a post on what not to do at a hen party! I didn’t want a hen do, a lot of my friends are male.
I have friends spread all over Europe so organising something seemed impossible, the thought of dressing up in tacky outfits and going to get drunk at numerous clubs fills me with dread and don’t get me started on my feelings on male strippers!
I really wasn’t fussed on the whole thing. This all changed after a rather boozy meal in East London one night (burgers in donuts is a thing, who knew!) when my friends from uni decided, in their cocktail infused state, that we should do something.
Seen as most of them are guys we felt it couldn’t be named a hen do, hence the birth of the hen don’t! file-07-11-2016-10-39-36Given that I’d also participated in a cocktail or 2 I then did the unthinkable, I gave them full control to organise the whole thing, I’d have no involvement!
I assumed it would either be forgotten about when everyone sobered up or we’d just do a variation on our usual meal out in London. I was wrong, very very wrong!
Months of Facebook groups and WhatsApp conversations I wasn’t allowed to be part of ensued whilst they enjoyed my panic! I was allowed my cousins and friend Nikki to join me the night before to help me pack (needless to say the giant clock and snorkelling gear didn’t go in, I did have bug spray though!) but I was still completely in the dark.
So Saturday morning, I’m banished and locked in the kitchen having to listen to everyone giggling away and Rob just saying “I don’t get it” numerous times before the giggling turned to fits of laughter as the boys arrive, an arrival that brought out half our neighbours! Jones Jet had landed (otherwise known as a mini van hired from the airport) and with it a fully fancy dressed ‘crew’! file-07-11-2016-10-38-50file-07-11-2016-10-39-17They’d really gone for it, I was presented with a boarding card before being ushered into the van and away, marshalled out of the drive with some glow sticks whilst listening to fake safety announcements they’d created.We had a variety of comedy in flight magazines, airline blankets, pillows and vanity sets and a full tray of breakfast!file-07-11-2016-10-39-02 An ’emergency landing’ into Reading service station finally revealed that we were going to Bristol, where I was also presented with a t shirt and relatively tasteful bride to be banner I was forced to wear.file-07-11-2016-10-39-26 Many hours later we pulled up outside an actual hotel complete with swimming pool and spa (they’d had me convinced for a while that we were going camping) and promptly decided to make use of them! With a night that then continued on with a meal in a steak restaurant, an exclusive cocktail bar where we were joined by some of my other friends who live in Bristol, a bar and finally a crappy club they really did outdo themselves!file-07-11-2016-10-39-46file-07-11-2016-10-40-00 I spent most of the weekend in absolute amazement that a) they loved me enough to plan the weekend and b) that they actually had really good organisational skills when left to their own devices! Trouble is though I’m never going to plan anything ever again now I know they can do it! So I’m now a full advocate for the hen don’t (should probably copyright that!) everyone should have one and I have the numbers of a couple of good planners!!file-07-11-2016-10-40-11
Awww I love that they made such an effort. Who says that your hen do can’t be a hen don’t!

Bride To Be Diaries: Our Traditional Bride’s Pre-Honeymoon Dash

So our beautiful Traditional Bride is married! She looked amazing and we can’t wait to show you her big day. Today she talks about how she did a bit of crazy honeymoon planning. Grab a cuppa and pop your feet up as I hand you over to Kathryn.

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Our Traditional Bridetraditional bride

Pre-Honeymoon Dash

So the wedding is done and dusted. I’ve talked, laughed and cried about it so much and can’t wait for it to be published as one of Cwtch’s Real Weddings so I’m not going to go over it all again now, I’m going to tell you about the next amazing but stressful part of our wedding process. The Honeymoon.

Now I know a lot of you sensible people will have already budgeted for a honeymoon, perhaps you may have already booked it and started saving for it… if that’s you, well done, you’re doing the right thing!

I however, had a different approach. Every single last penny of our savings, wages, earnings and any cash we came across was ploughed directly into our big day. To us, we didn’t want to scrimp on a single detail on the day if we could help it, and our priority was the day itself. We had the bright idea of asking our beautiful family and friends to kindly gift us with some cash instead of traditional wedding presents, we live together and have all the toasters, plates and kettles we need in our life, and we just hoped that with these very kind donations, we would be able to snap up a “cheap late deal” on a honeymoon a day or 2 after the wedding and just jet off!photo-23-09-2016-12-01-41-pm

That did indeed happen… Eventually. Although it wasn’t particularly cheap. We couldn’t have been more grateful for the incredible generosity of our loved ones, and we had a fantastic honeymoon in beautiful sunny Cyprus but the fact of the matter was that we ended up paying for a holiday that we wouldn’t have chosen if we’d had more time! You see there doesn’t appear to be such a thing as a “cheap late deal” these days… unless you live near the London airports or want to go to Turkey, neither of which was a possibility for us!photo-26-09-2016-9-02-40-pm

Our wish-list went like this:

💎Cyprus/Canaries

💎Flying from Bristol/Cardiff

💎10 nights

💎On the beach

💎Nice resort, near a few pubs/restaurants but not too wild.

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I exhausted onthebeach.com within 24 hours of the wedding and quickly realised we needed some help so spent the next 3 days in Thomson, Thomas Cook and eventually Travel House to finally get anything anywhere near what we wanted.

Rich and I are not massive on luxury, we wanted some guaranteed sunshine, a relaxing holiday together just to chill out and reflect on the manic couple of years we’d had and the lovely future ahead of us. But the truth of it was we had very little choice!

The right destinations just didn’t have the right flights, the right flights didn’t fly on the right dates, the right dates didn’t match our budget and what matched our budget were to completely different places!

It was hell. I really hadn’t thought this through, and was in such a panic, if we hadn’t booked time off work, I’d have said sod it, let’s leave it a few weeks, but we couldn’t.

My job isn’t so bad, they’re pretty flexible but Rich had booked 3 weeks off and simply couldn’t change it so we admitted defeat and took a holiday which ticked 2 of our boxes (well, almost 2… We conceded to dropping one night!)photo-02-10-2016-3-40-51-pm

What we actually got:

✅Cyprus

✅Flying from Birmingham

✅9 nights

✅Nowhere near the bloody beach

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But before the holiday could begin, I had to get rid of the cats.

I love my weird, ungrateful pets a lot more than they even like me I think.

Being a responsible owner, I’d already pre-arranged their stay in a local cattery because I knew we would be going somewhere, but with everything going on, not to mention the last minute shopping trip where I spent a ridiculous amount of time searching the sale rails in New Look and Next for the last of the holiday gear the day before we departed, I’d simply forgotten I had to actually take them in.

The crazy little creatures won’t let Rich even touch them half the time, they don’t appear to like male humans (they are rescue cats and I have no idea of their background or previous treatment, only that they’re terrified of men. I could write blogs purely on the hell we endure with these psychotic animals on a daily basis but I’d be here all day.)photo-22-11-2016-5-02-01-pm

So I was happily cruising home from my shopping trip when I had a phone call from the hubby reminding me I had to take the fur-devils to the cattery by 5:00pm.

It was 4:35 and I was about 2 miles from home and a further 5 miles from the cattery. Cue the most horrific panic ever, you don’t know horror until your much-struggled-for honeymoon is under threat by 2 fluffy balls of indifference.

I booted it back to the house, grabbed the critters and rammed them in the cat cage, there was no time for tickles, treats and coaxing, I got clawed to bits in the process but with 10 minutes to spare, I was booting it back down the road, Lily and Lola yowling in the cage next to me as if it was their holiday at stake and I was literally, excuse the pun, having kittens!photo-22-11-2016-5-02-08-pm

The cattery opens 10am – 5pm, we were leaving at 6am the next day, too early to take them in in the morning and was stuck in rush hour traffic realising I was just not going to get them there in time.

Living in Swansea, I have no close friends and neighbours nearby to help me or take them in the next day for me, my family are all in Ammanford and I couldn’t believe that I’d left it so damn late!! I’d had all day!!

So a hysterically tearful phone call to said cattery resulted with a member of staff huffily agreeing to wait for our arrival (which was eventually 5:30pm!) and that was it, the kitties were safely deposited! Hating me, but safe and looked after.photo-23-09-2016-9-50-16-pmphoto-28-09-2016-12-32-50-am

And off we went, a whole week after the wedding!We had an amazing time. We drove the long trek to Birmingham and got tipsy in the airport, as you do, our flight was delayed and we arrived late in the night but the hotel was stunning, a massive refurbished 1-bed apartment overlooking the pool!

We ate out every day and night in gorgeous little Cypriot restaurants, walked miles and miles exploring bars and shops, we sipped cocktails and partied a bit too hard in the Ayia Napa strip a couple of nights, and spent a fortune on taxis to the next town to go to the actual beach, we met lovely friends, caught a fabulous tan, and enjoyed every second of our honeymoon BUT never would I ever leave it that late to book again!photo-28-09-2016-11-48-59-am

The cheap late deals are a thing of the past, unless you don’t mind where you go or your goal posts are totally moveable, book in advance!

And your pets. Don’t forget them either!photo-30-09-2016-9-32-41-pmI know how crazy it gets after the wedding. We had a 6 day gap between the wedding and the honeymoon so I can relate to the craziness, the total exhaustion and the need to just want to go x