Six Things I’ve Learnt in Six Years of Marriage

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Tomorrow is Gareth and my six year wedding anniversary. Instead of writing yet another “Oh I love him so much, he is my rock, without him I am nothing…” blog post (It’s true by the way but… well… you know… snoooooze) I thought I’d share six of the most important lessons I’ve learnt in these six short years.

1. Marriage does change things

For the better of course! When we were first married, nothing felt different. We lived together beforehand and, if I’m honest, I struggled to see what the big fuss was about. But after being married for a few years I did start to notice some changes… in both of us.

The safety and security you feel when you’re married is like nothing else I’ve ever experienced. Knowing that this person has chosen to be with you, and only you, for the rest of their life is quite a powerful feeling. The bond you have post-marriage is, for us anyway, so much stronger. The trivialities of the everyday don’t really matter as much, and any arguments don’t have the same devastating effect. We’re both ultimately in agreement and it’s us against the world – forever.

2. When in doubt, the relationship always comes first

I’ve given this advice to so many of my friends over the past few years and now I impart it to you! Whatever the issue, whatever the drama or trauma or stress, always remember that your relationship comes first. Period.

If you’re stressing about something external (like money, your job or a family drama), make sure you’re on the same team and you tackle it together. The worst thing you can do is shut them out, or worse still, blame them for it. Even if you don’t vocalise that blame, it can be all to easy to think things like “well if she did this differently…” or “if only he wouldn’t stand in my way…”

IT CAN BE SO HARD not to do this, but as long as you know that they are your priority, no matter what, then you won’t go far wrong.

This might sound frightfully un-feminist, but if Gareth had a problem with how much travel I was doing with The Blogcademy, for example, then I wouldn’t be doing it. He comes first. I love my job, but I love my husband more.

3. Your house is both of your homes

We have a rule in our house that neither of us (ahem, it’s really aimed at me) is allowed to buy anything ‘for the house’ without the other person’s consent. As someone who loves an impulse buy, this was difficult for me to come to terms with!

But this isn’t just my house – it’s his home too. Although our tastes might be quite different, it’s important that we agree on the things that decorate and furnish the space we both live in.

As much as I might dream of painting our front door pink and covering our dining table in glitter perspex (!!) that just isn’t going to fly with him. While his excessive wiring (it really is everywhere!) might drive me crazy, he did put up bright pink wallpaper up in our kitchen for me, so I can’t really complain!

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Blissed Out Birthday at The Nirvana Spa

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When my Mum asked me what I wanted for my birthday this year, there was only one thing on my mind – some rest and relaxation! So, after quickly tearing into my other presents on Monday morning (I was totally spoilt by my friends, I love you guys!) Gareth and I hopped into the car and headed to the tranquil oasis that is the Nirvana Spa, located just outside of Reading.

We were booked in for a Time Out Package which gave us access to everything the spa had to offer for three blissful hours. There’s outdoor jacuzzis, six pools filled with pure spring water, a sauna, steam rooms, the new Tepidarium suite which has heated ceramic loungers, and my personal favourite – the bubbly hydrotherapy surf pool!

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Eclectic Basement Wedding: Louisa & Richie

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This is definitely a wedding I wish I was at. Louisa and Richie sure do know how to throw one hell of a party! The styling for the celebration was really centred around their venue – the basement of Shoreditch Town Hall called The Ditch. An unusual choice maybe (and one with no natural light!) but it fit perfectly with what the couple wanted. Louisa’s dress was designed by Catherine Deane. She wore Badgley Mischka and her veil was vintage.

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“We just wanted our wedding it to be a big ol’ party with all our friend and family”, began the bride. “We didn’t stick to a script or colour theme or particular look. Every detail was there because we thought it was cool or beautiful or unusual. We weren’t trying to be shabby chic or retro or Rock and Roll, we were just being ourselves.”

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WIN 125 Mini Bottles and a Magnum of Freixenet Cava!

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When Freixenet, the Spanish cava producers, got in touch to ask if I wanted to have a party on them, and share the results on my blog, I nearly fell off my chair. Talk about my dream job! Then they told me they also wanted to include the chance for my readers to win enough cava to keep their wedding rocking well into the wee hours and I almost did a backflip!

Now I’m no wine snob, but I’m not going to lie to you, I initially thought there must be some kind of catch. When it comes to fizz I know what I like, and more importantly what I don’t like. What if it was horrible? Would I have to fib my way through this post and tell you otherwise..? But I need not have worried. When we cracked open the Cordon Negro, their flagship product, and took a sip, we were all suitably impressed.

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I’m Actually a Mermaid…

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There’s nothing that evokes childlike wonder quite like mermaids. I don’t think there’s any girl who watched The Little Mermaid as a kid and afterwards didn’t wanted to be one… So when this shoot, although not strictly wedding inspired, landed in my inbox, I knew I wanted to share it with you. It’s pure fantasy but that doesn’t make it any less fabulous.

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“I have a real love of fantasy shoots because you can completely let your imagination run free and bring your ideas to life”, wrote photographer Heline Bekker. “Gwenda, who played our mermaid, and I both work in the wedding industry and we do a lot of styled bridal shoots together. But we often talk about doing shoots just for us, something different, something not at all wedding-related, so we can spread our creative wings. Most of the time though, it just finds its way back to weddings…not this time though!”

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Gothic & Literary Lower East Side Synagogue Wedding: Devan & Keith

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Devan and Keith were married in New York’s Lower Eastside. Their incredible venue was The Angel Orensanz, the oldest Reformed Synagogue in the US. The bride wore a black Vera Wang gown but with it she rocked her T.U.K. Creepers – don’t you just love that?!

“I’m not sure if I can accurately ascribe a particular theme to our wedding because we weren’t necessarily going for one”, Devan explained. “We received various comments about its unconventionality, though that really wasn’t the aim either. We simply approached our wedding planning by choosing things that felt meaningful and personal to us, and based a lot of our decisions (like food and music) on what we liked, really sort of oblivious to tradition or trend.”

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“It made the task of planning a bit daunting at times (not being restricted to a theme left us with an overwhelming range of choices), but it really all paid off in the end. In different ways, we’re both the type of person who really needs something to have meaning for it to feel like a worthwhile choice. I can honestly say that every tiny detail was intentionally and purposefully selected. The end result was a wedding that felt very honest, personal, and ‘us’ (cliché, I know), in every single way.”

“Although we didn’t have a theme per se, we are definitely drawn to vintage, gothic, macabre, and Victorian aesthetics, so that’s reflected quite a bit in our wedding. We’re also very literary obsessed and admittedly rather on the nerdy side, both of which came out in some subtle, and perhaps some not so subtle, details (our wedding favors, which were a special edition of Pride & Prejudice designed by Keith, the inscriptions on our rings, our officiant’s book, which yes, sort of served as our something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue, and of course Keith’s suit).”

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