Is it the weather? Is it the time if year? Is it the fact that for a lot of people 2016 has been a bit shit and there’s way too much uncertainty about what’s to come in 2017? In all honestly, I don’t really know what the reason is (probably all of the above!) but the impending end of 2016 has felt like no other year I can remember.
I am an annoyingly positive person so wanted to close the year out with a little reminder to you that EVERYTHING WILL BE OK… and if it’s not, you’ll figure it out. Whatever you’re feeling apprehensive about – where your business might be headed, how you’re going to get everything on your wedding planning to-do list done, your relationship, your family, your bank balance – whatever it is don’t forget that you are in control of your life and 2017 is a brand new year and a fresh new start. Yes, its a massive cliché but I am a firm believer in always looking for the positive in every situation.
While I’m not one for new year’s resolutions (is any concept more likely to make you feel like a massive loser when you fail?) I do think the end of another 365 days is the perfect opportunity to take stock, look back and realise just how much you’ve achieved – I bet it’s more than you think!
Gareth and I have never taken a beach holiday together – not once in 14 years! We’re much more likely to go on a ski holiday with my family (the exact opposite of a beach holiday it would seem) or on a city break. Which is why I am so excited that we’re off to actual paradise next week with Hilton Seychelles!
Oh my god, this is a DREAM COME TRUE. We will be staying in three resorts throughout out trip, Doubletree by Hilton Seychelles Allamanda, Hilton Seychelles Labriz and Hilton Seychelles Northolme (head explodes!) Of course I will be reporting back on each and every one afterwards. I’m pretty sure this is going to be the trip of a lifetime and somewhere I’m going to insist you consider for your honeymoon too.
If someone had told me in October 2007 that the blog I had just started to share my ideas for my wedding would not only one day become the full time career of both me and (soon-to-be) husband, but would also be one of the most widely read wedding blogs in the world and would spawn a print magazine sold in stores up and down the country… well I would have told you to stop making up such nonsense! Even writing all that now, it feels totally crazy, like a dream.
I can’t believe I’ve been sharing on this space for nine years, how is that even possible?! Other than my relationship with Gareth I don’t think I’ve ever stuck at anything for so long!!
While the blogging industry has certainly changed a lot in that time, and many people might now lament that ‘blogging is dead!’ (I beg to differ) I don’t have plans to quit anytime soon. I can hand-on-my-heart say that every single exciting opportunity or friendship I’ve formed over the past almost-decade is because of this blog. I still love updating it every day and probably will until someone pries it from my cold dead hands!
The internet is changing fast (nothing new there) but I still feel there is a big place for blogs. Although I don’t read as many as I used to, and YouTube and Instagram are where all the ‘cool kids’ are these days, I still believe it’s really important to own your own content. After all, how can you make something your business when any moment YouTube or Instagram could change their policies and whip it out from under you!? No thank you!
“Happiness is letting go of what you think your life is supposed to look like and celebrating it for everything that is is” – Mandy Hale
I still haven’t unpacked from my recent trip, the house is full of boxes of magazines, the bathroom needs a clean, my inbox is bursting, I’m feeling overwhelmed with everything I have to do… but right now I am happy.
Things have been pretty full-on of late. Not only have I been travelling a lot (I’ve been away more than I’ve been home over month – Vienna, Paris AND Vegas all within three weeks!) but I’ve been working on issue 10, multiple new collaborations and preparing for the National Wedding Shows which are taking place in September/ October – wah!
In fact things have been so busy that we’ve decided to bring on our first employee! My sister Rachel (yes, the one that got married!) is coming on board part time to help us with social media (to begin with, then probably a lot more stuff once she finds her feet). It’s very exciting yet scary to think about employing someone for the first time. Up until now we’ve always worked with freelancers when we’ve needed things done that we can’t do ourselves. It feels like a very big responsibility even though she’ll only be doing a few hours work a week!
Most other wedding bloggers have large teams these days, but I’ve always liked not having the responsibility of anyone else, and having complete control. However its just got to that stage now where Gareth and I physically can not keep up with everything we need and want to do, so it finally feels like the right time.
As well as the usual shell scheme for exhibitors, I had the idea to create the Rock n Roll Bride Gallery, which will be an area that will feature some of the very best alternative wedding suppliers. The difference between this and the rest of the show is that each supplier will get a plinth to display just a couple of their products, rather than a full stand. I almost want it to be like a little Rock n Roll Bride boutique and its going to be rad!
The Gallery is for those suppliers that maybe aren’t quite at the stage in their business where they’re able to afford a ‘proper’ stand just yet. The section is also by application only (aka not everyone who applies will be accepted) and I’ll be personally vetting each and every one. I want to make sure the Gallery is a killer selection of suppliers that I would genuinely recommend to my followers.
I am very, very bad at keeping secrets, especially exciting ones! So when Sophie and I planned months ago, to take Ronnie to Paris for her birthday, I was sure I would accidentally blab. BUT I DIDN’T AND I’M SO PROUD.
We had the most wonderful two days in the City of Light (as you will have seen if you follow me on Instagram or Snapchat), and I decided to make a little video to bring you along with us. We meandered around the beautiful cobbled streets (Monmartre is my favourite!) marvelling at the architecture, eating croissants, crepes and macarons, and spilling Prosecco nearly everytime we ordered some!