DIY: Bride Binder

Being a bride is one of the most exciting yet overwhelming times of your life. You have a million things to decide, a million other to keep track of and a never ending to do list – all while maintaining everyday life! If you’re lucky like I was, you have a super supportive family and amazing coordinator [shout out to Jill at Sunkissed Events] to help you through it.

Shortly after I got engaged, my sister made and gifted me a Bride Binder. It was full of checklists, worksheets, information, etc. I’m not sure if she knew at the time but it ended up being one of the best tools I had while on my bride-to-be journey. It gave me a place to organize all my brochures, contracts, notes, torn out magazine pages, etc. [better than tagging everything “wedding” in my email] Now that she’s engaged, I’ve made some updates to it and gifted it back to her to carry along her bride-to-be journey.

Have a bride-to-be in your life you want to help stay organized? Here’s how to create the perfect Bride Binder – downloadable worksheets and checklists included!

Find a 3 inch+ fun binder, something she’d be happy to carry around and keep her excited for her upcoming wedding! You could even find a fun decal like my sister did to affix to the front. The word bride, her wedding date, new last name – get creative!

Inside mine I added a few items I found helpful and I knew she would too. A fun zipper pouch to hold all the things, a 3 hole punch – those contracts don’t come pre-punched, fun pens, post-it tags to mark all those finds in bridal magazines and a small notebook to keep in her purse to jot down any questions, ideas or notes as she thinks of them.

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When my sister gave it to me she had it all divided out into sections to keep everything super organized. Pick up some binder dividers and pre-fill them out for her. Ours included the following sections:

  • Budget
  • Venue
  • Ceremony
  • Reception
  • Wedding Party
  • Guest List
  • Flowers
  • Dress / Tux
  • Invitations /
    Save-the-Dates
  • Cake / Food
  • Music
  • Photography
  • Registry
  • Rehearsal
  • Contacts
  • Honeymoon
  • Misc

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Lastly, include some worksheets and checklists to help her stay on top of things and organized. I’ve created blank versions here for downloading.

I also kept in some of my contracts, brochures, collected save-the-dates, etc. for her to look back on or compare to.

What are some things you found helpful on your bride-to-be journey? 

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28 Things

I turn 28 today, Happy Birthday to Me! I wanted to do something a little different and share some fun, randomness about myself. So here we go, 28 things about me for my 28th birthday!

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  1. My nickname is “Ta-ta”. When my sister was little it was hard for her to say Monica – it came out “Mon-ta-ta” and ended up being shorten to Ta-ta. I even have it tattooed on me.
  2. I dislike naps. [Yes, you read that correctly] They just seem to make me more tired.
  3. I’m afraid of clowns, birds and anyone dressed in a full costume [think Disney World].
  4. I am amazing at improvised singing. My husband says I could win awards. I can make up a new song off cuff about any random thing, or use the tune and words to current songs with a spin for any situation.
  5. I am not a homebody or one to ‘relax and chill’. If I’m relaxing I want to be on a beach with a beer in my hand.
  6. I can quote Moulin Rouge and Ever After from start to finish.
  7. Dessert is my favorite meal of the day and can be consumed at any hour of the day.
  8. I didn’t like coffee until about 4 years ago, now it’s an everyday necessity – and I’m picky about it.
  9. Christmas is my favorite holiday, obsessed doesn’t even describe it.
  10. I hate fish but love shrimp, crab and lobster. My crab picking skills are kinda a big deal.
  11. I almost always go about 2 days before washing my hair again. [curly hair probs]
  12. Favorite childhood movie was Lady and the Tramp.
  13. I went to school 2 years to be a teacher but ended up switching. I now have a degree in Web Development and have been doing web/digital things for over seven years.
  14. I hate cats. Yes, hate. Gimme all the doggies.
  15. I really like to imbibe. Wine and Beer Festivals are my jam.
  16. I disliked my husband on our first date. He had a curly fro and didn’t walk to me my car. [gasp] I blew him off for 2 weeks until I let him drive me to our mutual friends party and he won me over in that hour car ride.
  17. As a teen I drove a lifted truck and would sometimes hunt. While it’s not family friendly my dream car is still a ’86 F250 single cab.
  18. I am horrible at math and history. For-real. I couldn’t tell you when any of the World Wars happened.
  19. I am wedding obsessed. My wedding was amazing. My sister recently got engaged and I’m the Matron of Honor in 2 weddings this year – so stay tuned for wedding themed posts!
  20. I love baking as a hobby. Maybe I will do a post on all the fun cakes I’ve made over the years.
  21. I’m OCD when it comes to even numbers. The volume, temperature, etc. must always be on an even number. I also find extreme peace in symmetry.
  22. It’s rare that you will ever find me without sunglasses. I have too many pairs to count.
  23. I’m lactose intolerant but still find ways to enjoy ice cream and other dairy deliciousness.
  24. I eat cupcakes by breaking the bottom half off and putting in on top of the icing like a cupcake sandwich. Try it – perfect cake:icing ratio in every bite.
  25. I had never seen a single Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, or other typical sci-fi movie until I met my husband.
  26. I support the Indianapolis Colts 100%. Losing a game can ruin my entire day. We need to make a trip back to Indy soon.
  27. DIY projects excite me. My husband and I gutted our house from top to bottom when we bought it and the projects haven’t stopped since.
  28. My babies [fur & human], my husband & all the rest of the people we love mean the world to me. Creating a fun & happy life for our growing family is my number one priority.

27 brought me the greatest gift of all in Gunnar, but also brought a lot of heartache and family loss. Here’s to a happy and positive 28!

So there you have it, a little more about me! Now I want to know what we have in common! 🙂

Where’d You Go?

I’ve been absent. 1 month since my last post. I sincerely apologize.

Quick Update: We had a death in the family, I’ve switched jobs, gone out of town on a company retreat, we’ve taken on a few time sucking house DIY projects and most importantly have just spent the beginning of summer enjoying life as a family of 3. Life lately has been a whirlwind but it’s starting to level back out. So I’m back in action and ready to provide more delicious recipes, DIY projects, health updates and as always a peek into this crazy, beautiful life.

Here’s some photos of the happenings in our life lately to hold you over – stay tuned for more posts soon!