It’s officially back-to-school time (in case your social media hasn’t been flooded with adorable photos of backpack-clad kiddos heading off to school)! As teachers across the country are readjusting to before-dawn alarm clocks and bells dictating their daily schedules, there are additional challenges that arise for teacher brides-to-be.
Do you have to get married in the summer months? How can you have a bachelorette party in the middle of the year? When will you find the time to wedding plan in between lesson planning, grading, and working full time? Relax, we’re here to help.
Setting a Date
More often than not, newly engaged teachers will begin to plan for summer weddings, and it’s only natural. Most teachers across the country are off in the summer weeks/months, so it’s often easiest to plan your big day for a time that is more stress-free, and where obligations are fewer. However, your profession doesn’t have to dictate your wedding date or season. If you’ve always dreamed of a fall fête or spring celebration, it’s still possible!
As soon as it’s available, scan your school calendar for long weekends due to religious holidays, conventions, or other school closings. Ideally, you’ll be able to book a venue during these extended times to avoid having to take any of the scant days off you may have throughout the year. If not, it’s still possible! If you have your heart set on a “regular” weekend, you can power through by only taking off Friday (before a Saturday wedding) and returning (with lots of coffee) that Monday. The honeymoon can follow later.
Many teachers absolutely love their jobs and the people they work with. The longer your tenure at a school, the more likely it is that you have formed meaningful relationships and friendships with coworkers, co-teachers, assistants, and other faculty which can make crafting your wedding guest list a nightmare. Unless you have an unlimited budget and space, you’ll have to use discretion when determining who will be invited to your big day, and it can be super difficult. Some may opt for the “no coworker” rule, which if firmly adhered to can work, but most will want some coworkers to share in their celebration.
A great rule of thumb for deciding who to invite to your wedding? Reflect on who you keep in touch with and actually hang out with during work breaks, especially summers. This can often be a good indicator of who is a true “friend” versus a “work friend.”
If your ceremony is local, sending an email to staff who may want to attend is common, and completely acceptable etiquette-wise. In fact, many brides even let their students’ parents know of their ceremony info, in case they want to share in the special moment, too. In unique (and completely adorable) cases, students have even had the honor of serving as flower girls and ring bearers!
If you thought wedding planning as a teacher was a challenge, honeymoon planning can be even more of a headache, but with a huge payoff, of course. More often than not, for a traditional honeymoon, you very well may have to wait until the summer months to jet-set off and celebrate your newlywed status for an extended period of time. While it’s tempting to want to travel right after the big day, waiting has its perks. Not only is the weather often more desirable abroad, you’ll also have reason to celebrate after the initial newlywed glow has passed. Building anticipation post-wedding and having another big event to look forward to is exciting and special.
The downside? Possibly more expensive airfare and hotel rates, but planning early enough can lessen the pain. Another alternative is to take a quick mini-moon for a few days following the wedding date, and plan for a bigger trip later on.
A teacher’s time is usually dictated by the bell schedule, and time in-between is limited. Unlike other professions where an hour lunch or consistent “clocking-out” time can be relied upon, it’s often a crapshoot in education. So, how can you wedding plan?
As tempting as it may be to multitask or rush to cross off tasks during a short prep period or break, it’s best not to. Rushing or cramming things in will more often than not leave you feeling stressed, and more prone to errors. Within your already crammed day, leave your work breaks to be just that—work breaks.
Instead, try designating one or two evenings a week or one afternoon each weekend, for a set amount of time, devoted to wedding planning tasks and chores. Perhaps these nights you’ll skip cooking and order in, for the sake of time. Or, you can meet your fiancé at your favorite coffee shop or pub to combine planning with a date night, too. Not only will that make the time more enjoyable, but you’ll be even more productive.
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