I recently read that number one of the top ten regrets of couples who marry is that they wish they hadn’t stressed so much.

When couples marry, they often have a vision in their minds of their perfect day.  The ceremony will be outside in a gorgeous garden or on the beach.  The weather will be sunny and warm.  It will not be too hot, though, so they will not be in direct sun.  The guests will be perfectly happy to stand throughout the ceremony.  Or sit out in the open.  No problem!

The ceremony?  They’ll have a sand ceremony and a handfasting.  Oh, and maybe fit in a rose presentation and tea ceremony.  Will that make the ceremony too long?  No way!

They will hand make all the invitations, seating place cards and most of the decorations for the reception.  They will hang glass lamps all around the surrounding trees, filled with candles, which will be lit just before the arrival of the bridal party.

Aunty so-and-so will set next to Grandma, even though they haven’t spoken in years.  After all, it’s our day, not theirs.  They will put their differences aside.  Of course they will!  In fact, everyone will be happy for the Bride and Groom to organise the seating and seat whomever they like next to whomever they like!

The Bride and Bridesmaids will wear high heels.  Naturally!  Who cares about mud?  They will walk down to a beautiful song that magically emits from the speaker.  Oh wait, does someone have to be in charge of doing that?  No hassle – they’ll just ask so-and-so to do it.

Well, of course, things don’t always go to plan.  The weather, totally outside anyone’s control.  Elderly guests who can’t stand for long periods.  Dehydrated guests waiting up to an hour in the full sun, if they arrive early, for the Procession.  The person in charge of the music has no idea how to do it.  And hand making everything?  You may think that is the easy part, but when you suddenly find yourself spending an hour on every place card – and you have 100 to do – well that’s a lot of time spent on one thing only.

There is really so much to think about and organise at a wedding.  The above is only some of it.  There are photographers, flowers, cake, etc. etc.  So my advice?  Deal with what you have to deal with and delegate whatever you possibly can.  It doesn’t mean you have to give up your dream.  For example, you may be brilliant at craft.  But now is the time to outsource whatever you can afford.   Enlist the help of friends and family.  Most people would be delighted and even flattered to be of assistance.  Don’t be scared to ask for help.  Don’t take too much on your own shoulders.

Have a plan, but be flexible.  And – if things don’t go as smoothly as you wished – go with it.  Laugh.  Some of the best weddings I have conducted were when something spontaneous happened.  Relax!  And delegate, delegate, delegate!!