Overseas Wedding Planning

First there was obviously the proposal… (Read the proposal story here.)

The week after we got engaged went by in a blur as we skyped family and friends to tell them the news, and jumped into learning how in the world we would plan our wedding while living overseas!

We started out with the easiest tasks possible. Jesse and I headed to a cafe with Jesse’s laptop and brainstormed the people we wanted to be a part of our big day. We continued to dream outloud of how we wanted our ceremony to look, the order of events, and the dancing at the reception. A dream that would soon be reality!

At first, the thought of choosing a venue without physically being able to visit the places ourselves seemed risky. However, I was surprised at all the online wedding sights that proved to be extremely helpful on narrowing down the type of reception venue I was looking for. I pointed my Eyes and Ears (AKA my parents) towards some leads. They were actually the ones who suggested we check out the Bearpath Ballroom. Both my brothers caddied there and I had also worked there as a lifeguard for a season.

Their discoveries were positive and budget friendly. It made sense- and if my dreams as a young girl to get married at the Interlachen Country club couldn’t happen, this was a nice second place, and maybe even better since the price isn’t nearly as many digits long!

So, Bearpath Golf & Country Club it was. Who knew that my wedding reception venue had been under my nose during all those hot summer days working at the pool!

Now, to set a time and date for the big day! A couple’s true test… naw. For us, it was just a matter of elimination. Due to my family’s loyal participation in American football, the wedding could not be on a Saturday: Saturdays are sacred GAME DAYS. Then, with people flying in from out of town, Friday seemed inconveniently inconsiderate. So, a Sunday wedding it is.

Or so we thought. As we went forward with booking a ceremony venue, we found out that apparently the chapel I wanted to get married in doesn’t host weddings on Sundays! Uh oh…

Finally, after several emails back and forth, a Sunday wedding was petitioned for and agreed upon if we would be fine with a 6 o’clock ceremony time. It’s a little later than I would have initially chosen, yet I imagined an evening would still be a beautiful time for a romantic fall ceremony to start.

What month could we get married? Well, the end of October was out since my grandpa would be in Canada hunting, but too much earlier would be pushing it since we’re planning from overseas. With all that to consider, the first weekend in November was my first choice and both venues were free. We set the date! November 2, 2014! Deposits were then paid, setting everything in stone. Whoah- it just got real!

Traditionally, a wedding dress would be the next item of agenda… Not for this bride! I decided I would wait until I was home in July to search for a dress so I could go with my mom and sister, and avoid having to carry a wedding dress with me on an overseas flight home.


So, with the dates set, next was to secure the bridal party. I asked my sister to be my maid of honor, and four of my best friends and Jesse’s sister to be my bridesmaids. I sent them each a picture collage via either FaceBook or IMessage to ask them. Thankfully, they all said yes!


After that, the only things left to do had to be done in America- food tasting, decorations, appointments with the marriage counselor, meetings with ceremony and reception coordinators, tex rental, flowers, DJ’s, etc….

So, with nothing more to do, Jesse and I decided to make a wedding website, telling our story and details of the wedding day. (See our website here.)

Feeling good about what we were able to accomplish overseas, Jesse and I booked a flight to Minnesota for July, eagerly awaiting the trip when we could put more of our wedding planning into action!

Although planning a wedding while living in another country is not ideal, due to a great team back home, we discovered that it wasn’t as difficult as we had imagined, for which we are so thankful:)


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