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After all the frantic preparations leading up to the big day, you might feel at a bit of a loose end, wondering ‘what needs to be done now?’
So the wedding bells are gently fading into the distance as you return from honeymoon and start settling into your new status of married life. After all the frantic preparations leading up to the big day, you might feel at a bit of a loose end, wondering ‘what needs to be done now?’
Don’t worry; there are still quite a few details that need to be attended to as soon as possible after your wedding day. This checklist will help you to remember 10 important things for newlyweds to do.
1. Take care of your wedding dress
The bride’s exquisite wedding dress certainly has a key place in your happy memories, so you may want to get it professionally cleaned and preserved.
It is best to do this within six weeks of the wedding day so that any stains may be easily removed. The preservationist will pack it in a box which should be stored away from extreme temperatures, or direct sunlight.
If you don’t wish to keep your dress you could no doubt find a happy buyer and pass the pleasure forward for someone else to enjoy your lovely gown.
2. Put the cake away
If you have a traditional tier cake you may want to keep the top layer for your first wedding anniversary. Get a family member or close friend to pack it away for you after the wedding. First remove any sugar flowers or decorations, then wrap the cake in layers of plastic wrap and place it in an airtight bag before freezing.
3. Save your bouquet
If you haven’t tossed your bouquet to the next hopeful bride, you may want to preserve it as a keepsake.
You could press and frame a few blooms to display in a picture frame alongside your other wedding mementos. Or if you want to preserve the entire bouquet you could hire the services of a professional preservation company. They will normally vacuum-seal it inside a glass container such as a dome or shadow box.
4. Send out the thank you notes
Saying thank you is an essential step before you can truly start enjoying all the amazing wedding gifts you received. The sooner you can do this after you get back from honeymoon the better. The ideal time is within a month but two or three is also understandable.
Handwritten notes are always appreciated and worth the effort. Don’t try to do them all at one sitting, though. Make it a daily ritual for the two of you to sit down together and get a few done every day.
5. Write vendor reviews
Once you are done with the thank you notes, don’t forget to express your appreciation for all your wedding vendors; your florist, photographer, caterer, make-up artist, hairdresser and everyone else who worked so hard to make your day a success. Just a few kind words of review on their websites can go a long way to boosting their business as well as helping engaged couples who are busy planning their weddings.
6. Arrange the photo album
After the flurry and excitement of posting all your digital images on Facebook, don’t forget about creating an album to preserve your special memories. If this was included in your photography package, all the better.
Set aside a date with your new spouse to go through all the photos and choose your favourites, then arrange them in sequential order to recreate the flow of your wedding day. You might even like to have one or two enlarged on canvas to hang on the walls of your new home.
7. Sort out your finances
The financial aspects of your relationship are important to discuss before you get married so that you can know how to proceed together. Some couples choose to open up joint accounts after marriage, or they add one another to their existing accounts. Another idea is where each partner pays a certain percentage of their salary into a joint account to cover the household expenses.
Being married will also affect how you file taxes, whether you file jointly or separately.
8. Take care of legal aspects
If you are changing your name, that would be the first matter to attend to after obtaining your marriage certificate. Your new name then needs to be changed on every legal document you use, such as your identity card or social security card, your driver’s licence, your health insurance and your bank accounts.
The sooner you can get these things done the better and it will also help with your transition into married life. And don’t forget to change your name and status on Facebook and Twitter!
9. Agree on the house rules
Living with someone 24/7 can be a huge adjustment, especially in practical terms of the day-to-day running of your new household. It’s important that you come to an amicable agreement on who is going to do what around the house. If you don’t have a clear plan you may end up with one or both of you feeling ‘put upon’ and resentful. And remember, you no longer have to feel locked in to the traditional husband-wife roles.
It’s all about preferences, abilities and choices, so find what works best for both of you and have fun keeping house together.
10. Start planning something new
The best way to move forward is always to be looking and planning ahead. So now that you have your wedding, honeymoon and post-honeymoon to-do list successfully sorted, it’s time to set some new goals to work towards. Maybe you can throw a housewarming party or start thinking about your first anniversary celebration.
Whatever it is, keep planning, arranging and creating the life you love to live with your soul mate.
[Credit: Sylvia Smith]