4 Things You Must Do After the Wedding

It’s hard to believe that after countless months of planning, the entire wedding day is over in just a blink of an eye. Now what? Well just because you no longer need to stress over table linens or engage in a butter cream vs. custard wars doesn’t mean that there isn’t still plenty to be done. Now that you are officially a Mr. and Mrs. combo package, it’s time to tackle an entirely new to-do list.

Newlywed Advice | Post Wedding To-Do ListOnce you’ve returned from your honeymoon, sit down together and go over a few of these married musts:

Changing your name – If you plan to take your husband’s name, you have to take the necessary steps to make it legal. Within the first 90 days following your wedding, you’ll want to have your name changed on your social security card, driver’s license and passport. If you have any credit cards in your name, make sure to also contact the corresponding companies to let them know that you’ll be needing a new card.

Sending thank-you cards – It may seem like a tedious process, but it has to be done. Ideally, you want to have your thank you cards written and sent out within the first two months, unless you want to receive piercing, judgmental stares from Aunt Muriel at the next family gathering. To make things either, divide the pile between the two of you and have stamps or stickers made for the return address. Trust us, it’ll make a world of difference!

Taking care of gift returns – Whether they be from the bridal shower or the big day itself, you’re probably going to have a ton of wedding registry returns to make. As most stores have different policies for returns, you want to make sure that you stay on top of this and bring back the things you don’t want as quickly as possible; keep it within a two month window.

Figuring out the finances and other important issues – Now that you’re legally married, what’s yours is his and what’s his is yours. Chances are you’ve already talked about this before tying the knot, but now that things have become real, sit down and make plans to merge accounts, (if that’s what you’ve chosen to do) have new checks printed, discuss whose health insurance you will be keeping and make arrangements to become each other’s beneficiary. They’re difficult topics to discuss, but they are important nonetheless.

Trust us, you will be so much happier once you can cross each of these points off your list. The sooner you do, the sooner you can settle into your life of perfect, wedded bliss!

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Avoid These Mistakes When Planning Your Bachelorette Party

Having one last big celebration as an unmarried woman is a rite of passage for any bride-to-be. Not only does tradition practically demand it but truth be told, you deserve it! After countless months of stress and meticulous planning, you need a break to just lay back and let loose with your girls.

Texas Old Town | Advice for Brides

Now as much as you may love and trust your maid of honor, planning a bachelorette party is a pretty big deal! Instead of allowing her to just steer you blind, make sure that you sit down with her (and any of your bridesmaids who may be involved in the planning process!) and go over a few things. After all, just a few mistakes could make the difference between the best time ever and a complete and total nightmare.

Here’s a quick look at some of the biggest bachelorette party mistakes that can be easily avoided:

Thinking that everything can be planned in five minutes
If you’re hoping to say goodbye to your single lady days in a big way, you’re most definitely going to have to plan well in advance. Once you pick the day/weekend that you’d like to celebrate, your maid of honor will want to make travel and hotel reservations six months out. Then in about three months’ time, any special activities should be booked, such as surf lessons, rock climbing or a simple reservation at that chic restaurant you’ve been dying to try out. From there, all you’ll have to worry about is entertainment, such as favors, games, decorations, etc.

Not setting a budget from the very beginning
Unfortunately, your dream bachelorette party may be a tad bit on the expensive side for many of your girlfriends. That’s why you can’t just spring a price on them at the last minute and expect them to hand over a check. That’s why you shouldn’t waste any time in putting plans together. The sooner you get everything nailed down, the sooner you can talk to everyone about the cost. From there, they will have enough time to decide whether or not they’ll be able to save enough extra cash to join you.

Keeping you (the bride) out of the loop so that it can be a total surprise
While we absolutely love the sentiment behind this, it just isn’t a good idea for your maid of honor and bridesmaids to keep you in the dark when it comes to the details. Everyone has their own ideas of the perfect bachelorette party, and what you girls have in mind may not exactly align with your own wishes. To ensure that this is the celebration of your dreams, your girls simply have to keep you informed.

This is your last hooray as an un-wedding lady! There’s no reason why it shouldn’t be the time of your life, and avoiding these common issues will help to ensure that it truly is! Enjoy, bride!

3 Tips for Having the Best Engagement Photo Session

While there are surely a number of couples who look forward to their engagement photo session, there are countless others who get overwhelmed with nerves. What if the photos come out horrible? What if our poses look too stiff? These are the photos you will be sharing with all of your friends and family members; it’s understandable that you would want them to turn out perfect.

Engagement Photo Tips | TexasRelax; the less you pressure yourself to have the world’s greatest engagement photos, the better they will be. Here are just a few tips on how to make your session feel as natural as possible:

Get comfortable with your photographer. Unless you have a friend who just so happens to be a professional photographer, chances are that you’ve only just met the person who will be taking your engagement photos. It can be nerve wrecking to be so intimate with your fiancé in front of a stranger. That’s why you should take a few moments to chat it up with her. The more you speak with her, the more comfortable and relaxed you will be, which will translate in the photos.

Choose locations that mean something to you. Your engagement photos are all about celebrating the next step in your relationship; they’re exciting and personal. Why wouldn’t you want to take a few shots at a place that means something to you both? Think of where you first met, where you had your first date or your first kiss. Do you share a love for a certain sports team? Why not take a photo outside of the stadium? It’s your story that’s being captured, so why not pick your own backdrop?

Get active. One of the most common reasons why some couples feel particularly uncomfortable during their photo session is that they don’t know what to do with their hands. If you’re nervous about this, take a break from some of the posing shots and switch it up. Have your photographer take a photo of you and your fiancé fishing off the dock, walking your dogs at the park or engaging in a game of catch. Whatever it is that will make you feel less like a smiling mannequin!

The most important piece of advice that we could give you is to just have fun! Remember that you love this person beside you, and you want the world to know it – the rest will follow. Happy engagement!

(Source: Brides)

Is an All-Inclusive Honeymoon Right for You?

Regardless of whether you’re planning to leave for your honeymoon the day after your wedding or if you’ll be waiting just a few months longer, getting everything sorted for your first big vacation as a married couple is not something to put off. If you’re like many couples, you’ve already begun thinking about the possibility of an all-inclusive trip – and we can’t blame you. With all of the expenses involved with a wedding, the thought of paying for everything all at once and not having to worry about the money again is extremely appealing.

Planning the Perfect Honeymoon

All things considered, remember that all-inclusive trips aren’t for everyone. Ask yourselves these few questions before making the big decision:

Do you like being active on your vacations?
When it comes to tropical destinations in particular, tons of activities are already included in the all-inclusive package. If you don’t see yourself getting up to partake in things such as snorkeling, kayaking, cave tours, etc., you may just be paying extra for no reason.

Do you plan to drink a lot?
We all know how overpriced alcoholic drinks can be on vacation. With most all-inclusive packages, alcohol is almost always included, meaning that you don’t have to worry about the cost of those Mai Tais on the beach.

Would you rather be left alone?
Still wrapped up in wedded bliss, we know that you and your new spouse will want to have a bit of alone time during your honeymoon. However, do you want it to stay that way throughout the majority of your trip, or are you interested in meeting new people? All-inclusive trips often bring like-minded people together, and you may just find yourselves sharing cocktails and spending a great deal of your trip with another couple. If this doesn’t sound like the most ideal situation, ask your travel agent about the resort’s atmosphere before booking.

So what do you think? Is an all-inclusive honeymoon the right choice for you? Let us know what your deciding factor was in the comments section below!

Choosing the Right Song for the Mother-Son Dance

There’s so much tradition associated with a bride and her father. Not only does he get to walk his daughter down the aisle and give her away to the man who is promising to take over in protecting her for the rest of his life, but there’s so much emotion that does into the father-daughter dance at the reception. Sometimes, we get so wrapped up in this special relationship that we forget there is another relationship that deserves just as much attention: the one between the groom and his mother.

Just as girls tend to form a close bond with their fathers growing up, there are no real words to describe the one between a mother and her son. However, as the mother-son dance is the only (if not one of the few) wedding traditions that allows for this relationship to take center stage, it should not be something that is taken lightly.

Listen grooms, even if dancing is not your cup of tea and you really wouldn’t mind one way or another if there was a mother-son dance, remember that this is important to the woman who raised you. Your new wife will soon become the most important woman in your life and will be able give you things that your mother cannot, and that can be a heartbreaking thought for her to process.

In an effort to help you choose a song for your mother-son dance that will help you say the words that you can’t, Brides Magazine has created a special Spotify playlist for you to consider. Take a listen below and let us know if any of their choices caught your ear and made you think, yeah, that’s the one for mom.

 

Healthy Snacks that Will Help You De-Stress Before the Wedding

There’s no doubt about it; planning a wedding can be extremely stressful. As if you don’t already have enough going on with work, daily responsibilities and your seemingly fading social life, finding time to put a wedding together and also get a decent night’s sleep can be very difficult. All you want is to reach for your favorite pint of ice cream for a bit of comfort and solace but alas, that’s not very wedding diet-friendly.

Healthy Snacks that Will Help You De-Stress Before the Weddingefore the Wedding | Texas Old Town

Luckily, there are plenty of delicious snacks to munch on that are not only healthy, but can help you to de-stress, as well. Check them out:

Shelled Pistachios – Super yummy and rich in heart healthy nutrients, choosing shelled nuts can actually help you to eat less since it takes a bit longer to get past the shell. Plus, being able to physically crack open those shells can serve as an awesome outlet for your stress.

Dark Chocolate – Here’s an excuse to get your chocolate fix, guilt-free! Studies have shown that eating just one ounce of dark chocolate can help to relax your blood vessels and alleviate stress. So sit back and enjoy a bite or sip on a cup of cocoa made with real dark chocolate and feel the stress roll off your shoulders.

Seafood – Yeah, this one surprised us, too! Evidently, seafood is rich with DHA/EPA, which helps to balance stress levels. As an added bonus, it’s also a great option for those who are looking to shed a few pounds before saying I Do.

Looking for more de-stressing snacks to choose from? Brides Magazine may have a few more options to choose from. Have any more that you’d like to add to the list? Let us know in the comments section below!

3 Things Not to Wear For Your Engagement Photos

Once you have the ring on your finger, you’ll immediately want to dive right into the wedding planning process. As fun as this can be for some brides, there’s very little instant gratification involved. You can pick your venue, hire the caterer and choose a DJ over a live band, but you’ll still have to wait until the wedding day to see it all come together. That’s why we feel that having engagement photos taken is a good idea. Not only is it a way to share your big news with family and friends, but for many, it’s something that you have done and in-hand within a few weeks.

3 Things Not to Wear For Your Engagement Photos | Texas Old Town

That being said, you’ll obviously want these photos to be perfect – and what you and your fiancé choose to wear plays a big role in that result. So if you find yourself at a complete loss for your engagement photo outfit, allow us to give you a few recommendations for what not to wear:

Matchy-Matchy Outfits – Coordinating colors can be cute and helps to create a uniform look, but don’t go overboard. Everyone knows those old, embarrassing family photos where everyone is wearing a white tee and jeans and the last thing you want is to look back on these photos and wonder what you were ever thinking. Instead, try choosing colors that complement each other rather than matching to the exact shade.

Loud Patterns and Logos – They’re just too distracting – but this should be fairly obvious. Your engagement photos are a really big deal, and you don’t want anything to draw attention away from you, your fiancé and of course, the ring. Not only can logos cause you to look like a human advertisement, but sporting a pattern that may potentially be out of style in the next few years can lead to you unintentionally aging your photos and yourselves.

Anything That Makes You Uncomfortable – This one rings especially true for the brides-to-be. Not only do we tend to wear heels that we know are going to kill us after five minutes, but we don’t think about the length of our skirts/dresses the way we should. Sure, you love the look but think about the poses you want to take during your session; will you be able to lie down in the grass and feel comfortable about where the hem falls? If your clothes cause you to feel uncomfortable, it will undoubtedly show on your face.

For more tips on what not to wear for your engagement photos, read more on Brides.com. Then once it comes time for your session, be sure to share your photos with us on the Texas Old Town Facebook page! We’d love to see how they turn out!