On a sunny afternoon in York last November, RBJ got down on one knee in Central Hall on York University campus (where we met nine years earlier as students), produced a beautiful diamond ring and asked me to marry him. Whilst it wasn’t a shock to quite a few family members (RBJs mum had apparently already bought and written an engagement card!!), it came as a huge perfect surprise to me. Possibly an even bigger surprise that he had chosen the ring himself after several visits to Hatton Gardens to find the one.
We enjoyed an amazing weekend in York – visited my favourite restaurant, The Blue Bicycle (just thinking about the roast garlic bulb and crusty bread makes me salivate!!) walked the city walls, went to a candlelight service in York Minster and got upgraded to the Honeymoon suite at the fabulous Churchill Hotel (yes that actually happened – I thought upgrades only happened in American films).
It was then, at the end of a fantastic weekend away, that someone asked the slightly terrifying question that we were to hear repeatedly for the next few months – “When’s the wedding?” . Wedding? RBJ went pale. Yes we now had a wedding to plan. While I love planning events and organising weekends away, planning a wedding suddenly felt really overwhelming. Finally however, after lots of deliberating and the stress of being told by many venues that they were already fully booked for the whole of 2016 (?!?!), we now have a venue (the incredible North Hidden Barn in Hungerford) and a date – 28 May 2016! With the venue booked and a date confirmed, time to start the fun tasks!
And first on my list: pick and ask my bridesmaids. Which was easy and A LOT of fun – I started by asking my two big sisters to be my Maids of Honour and then asked my three bestest pals to be my beautiful bridesmaids. I asked them all with these little “Pop the balloon” boxes that I made:
I ordered all the bits and pieces online from Amazon and ebay and sat down one evening with my trusty Dymo label maker (my new best friend) to put them together! My advice to any bride-to-be is to do something special so that your bridesmaids know just how important they are to the big day. And if you have the time, do something creative. I mean you only get to ask them once and the reaction on all their faces when they popped the ballons made it totally worth the effort (even though I did have to remind one of them to actually say yes!!).
So what does this have to do with saunas and hot springs I hear you asking. WELL, plenty (I hope)! Hen do, bridesmaids weekends, honeymoon – lots of excuses to visit some new saunas, springs and spas. Will keep you posted!