The Final Chapter - 'I do'

Posted by Emily Collins on

When people say your wedding day is the best day of your lives it is a total understatement .

The two weeks leading up to our big day were manic! At that point it was hard to believe that everything would be done In time and the wedding would all go smoothly. Panic sets in and you find yourself surrounded by thousands of 'to do' lists that practically have the same thing written on all of them just in a different order.

The days fly by when planning a wedding and before you know it it’s the day before your big day and its all go go go! I had asked my two bridesmaids to meet me at my mums at 12 so we could sort out the final few bits and be on our way to the venue at 2.
When I imagined the day before the wedding I pictured us all to be running around like maniacs making sure everything was set to go but in reality we were all stood in the kitchen drinking champagne until the boys (my brother Ben, Slim and brother in law Jay) turned up to load the van.

Once everything was loaded up myself and Slim had to quickly dash home to pick up the boys ties that we had forgotten while my mum took Emily and Laura along with the most important thing of all.. My dress!! Jay and Ben were already on their way by this point.

After turning our house upside down Slim and I had finally found the ties that I had put in one of those 'safe places' that I instantly forget all about. So with everything packed and ready to go it was time to make our last journey together as an unwedded couple.

We had finally arrived at our venue. As we drove down the long wide driveway edged with perfectly shaped hedges and pristine gardens my stomach flipped. We were here and we were getting married and would be leaving the beautiful Great Fosters Manor house as Mr and Mrs Burling!!

As we walked out onto the garden terrace we were welcomed by our close friends and family. Not only was it the day before our wedding but it was also our beautiful nieces 6th birthday so of course we were on a mission to make her feel like a princess with balloons, pressies and of course lots of birthday cake and she was over the moon.

After a few drinks all together all of the men decided it was time to leave us girls to it so they headed back to where they were staying for the night in a hotel just down the road for some lad time. After a few more drinks us girls decided to get a table set up in the dining room so we could all have dinner together before calling it a night.
The drinks and conversations were flowing and before we knew it it was 10 o'clock so myself, Emily and Laura decided to head upstairs to our room as we still had a lot of preparation to be done. After getting all of our suitcases and bags together out of the cars we walked up what must have been 8 flights of stairs and down a thousand winding corridors until we had finally reached our room for the night.

The room was lovely. We walked in to find a bottle of champagne on ice as a little gift from reception and hanging up In the window I spotted a dressing gown...  *now just to fill you all in on this little joke, a few days before I had told the girls I had got them bridesmaids dressing gowns and then hinted that I hadn't got myself one in the hope that one of them would clock on and I wouldn’t be left without haha. So on the morning we were due to leave I noticed Laura and Emily being a bit shifty and Laura had tried to cover her tracks by saying she had some clothes for herself being delivered (because she had been travelling) and was waiting for them to be delivered that day. Of course I put two and two together and realized it must have been my dressing gown they were waiting for but they kept denying it so I just went along with their story*.. I walked over to where it was hanging to find a plain dressing gown with an A4 piece of paper stuck to the back of it with 'Bride' written in Biro. I didn’t actually know at this point whether this was part of their plan or if this was all I was getting but regardless it made me laugh and I loved my handmade gown so slipped it on only to find the real thing was hiding underneath the pretend one and I hadn't been forgotten after all – I do love my girls.

Me and Emily were then instructed by Laura to check under our pillows where we found nighties with 'Bride to be' and 'Bridesmaids' written across the front of them. Bless her she had snuck up to our room earlier and hidden us pressies around the room. She had also got me some books on how to cope with a husband and some 'Just married' Pyjamas. Emily had also gotten me a pressie which was matching bracelets with our initials engraved on either side, I Honestly couldn’t have spent my last night as Miss Thomas with better friends.

After a couple of glasses of champagne and a quick nail painting session we all got into bed with our matching pjs on and tried to get some sleep before an early start in the morning. I actually slept better than I thought I would but at 5:30 I must have only had my eyes open for a second when Emily had spotted I was awake and was shouting 'Your getting married!!!' . Poor Laura couldn’t pretend to be asleep anymore so we all slowly got ourselves together and made a plan for the morning ahead over coffee in bed.

We wasn’t due to start having our hair and makeup done until 9 so we had a few hours to kill. Mum had come up to meet us at around 7 and we decided to order some room service before we were too busy to eat.

After a lovely breakfast we gathered our things together and headed to my Sisters room to start getting ready. While the bridesmaids and flower girls got their hair and makeup done I was downstairs awaiting a very special delivery.... Our wedding flowers!!!

They finally arrived after more transport was called for as they didn’t fit into one van and I couldn’t contain my excitement. Now I know I probably should have been upstairs getting pampered and relaxing whilst everyone was hard at work downstairs but I couldn’t sit back when it came to this. I'm a florist and this is my thing so I wanted them to be perfect and everything I had ever dreamt of. After a few hiccups the flowers were finally in place and looked better than I had imagined them to look so I could finally go upstairs and get ready knowing downstairs already looked stunning and the final touches weren't even in place yet.

The morning flew by and after the bridesmaids and flower girls had got dressed and my hair and make up was done it was suddenly time for me to get dressed. Everyone had left the room and were waiting for me outside apart from my sister Vikki who was there to help.

I was ready and I felt amazing! My dress was on and it felt better than I had remembered. I had gone for a one of a kind, bespoke figure hugging, heavily beaded fishtail dress in a beautiful antique gold. I wore my hair up to expose the back of the dress which was very low cut with chained detailing draping down my back. I also wore a stunning veil that trailed about a meter behind as I walked. All of my girls looked amazing and as we started walking downstairs to meet my extremely proud and emotional dad I all of a sudden felt very overwhelmed.

As we stood outside the Ceremony room I could here the music starting and the butterflies in my stomach were having a ball. The doors opened and little Rosie lead the way holding a sign that read 'Uncle Slim wait until you see her!'. After Rosie it was Vikki and a very shy Gracie who wanted to be carried, then the Beautiful Laura followed by Emily and a little toddling Ruby and then it was my turn, 'Gulp!'.

Just before I entered the doors where shut briefly and I cannot explain the feeling I had at that moment. I was so nervous but at the same time I was so excited to get down the aisle to marry the man of my dreams.

The doors opened again and there I was walking down the aisle at MY wedding. I was beaming from ear to ear. Its such a beautifully romantic moment and I could hear my dad sobbing the entire length of the carpet. Slim and the boys all looked so handsome and smart in their suits and when I was handed over to my husband to be for a split second the nerves disappeared and it was as if it was just me and him alone. The ceremony was over so quickly and before we knew it we had exchanged vowels and were signing the register.

That was it, we were married and the entire room were on their feet applauding us and cheering. It was only then that I was properly able to take in the settings. The Ceremony room was absolutely breath-taking. Everything was cream and white apart including the carpet and there were stunning full length windows overlooking the most idyllic scenery. You are so taken back and overwhelmed at your wedding that it's hard to take it all in.

We lead the way out of the ceremony room and onto the patio where champagne and canapés where being offered around. The sun was beaming and we had a man singing Frank Sinatra in the background as we greeted all of our guests. It was then time for photos so we headed into the gardens and made the most of the lovely weather. After an hour or so of photos and talking to our guests it was time to head inside to sit and have a lovely meal surrounded by all of the most important people In our lives.

'Would you all like to stand and raise your glasses to the new Mr and Mrs Burling'. Walking into that room we were absolutely beaming and couldn’t be happier. The room looked unbelievable. Large circular tables filled the room with a cold and ivory colour theme running throughout, all except for the flowers. There were circular candelabra like arrangements made up of multi coloured blush toned Juliet, Patience and Alexandra David Austin Roses, Safi and Memory Lane lilac roses, Beautiful Avalanche and sweet Avalanche roses, delicate Peach, White and Pale pink Spray Roses, Hydrangeas also in white, Lilac and Pale pink tones along with Peony's, Lilac Bouvardia, Lissianthus and Freesias that were elevated above each table  apart from the head table where there was a runner of the same flowers spilling over the edge.

As we sat overlooking the room I was so overwhelmed and happy that I just cried happy tears until the meal was served. There is something about being newly married and watching every single person you love laughing and enjoying your special day and I will never forget that moment.

After a lovely three course meal made up of Prawn cocktails, chicken Roast and Mango cheesecake it was time for the speeches. My men done me proud! I laughed and cried a each and every one of them. After giving pressies out and thanking everyone who made our day so perfect and special we could all relax and enjoy the night ahead.

While the room was being transformed into a dancefloor and the band were setting up we all went back outside to the patio where the evening guests started to arrive. After greeting everybody and sneaking in a few more champagnes was time for me to gather the girls and throw my bouquet. We headed to a different garden for this so we were alone for our own little girly photoshoot.  There were a few girls who were determined to get their hands on the bouquet to be the next 'bride to be' so when Tasha caught it she was chuffed!

We managed to gather family together to get some more photos in before sundown and then it was time to head back inside to cut the cake. We had chosen an ivory iced 5 tier cake with blush and pastel coloured flowers spilling down one side. The tiers were made up of Carrot Cake, Chocolate cake and sponge and it tasted as amazing as it looked.

The band where now set up and we were being called onto the dancefloor for our first dance. When picturing our first dance previous to the wedding I thought I would be an emotional nervous wreck but as soon as Etta James' 'At last' started playing the hairs on the back of my neck stood up and it was as if me and my Husband were the only people in the room for the second time that day. After a while everybody came and joined us on the dancefloor to share the moment and once again I was smiling from ear to ear.

The band were excellent and after everyone had tucked into a bit of hog roast or a serving of fish and chips they were all up on the dancefloor taking in the atmosphere. While the band were still in full swing my hens had called me over to one side and I was presented with a scrap book made up of all of the photos and memories of our Ibiza weekender. I was so surprised and I absolutely loved it! That will definitely be one to show the grandkids when I'm older.

Now everyone that knows me and Slim will know that we couldn’t have a party or a celebration without some old skool garage and a rave up. After all this is how we met so it was only right to carry on the tradition on the night of our wedding. We were so honoured that my brother in law Jay was willing to do what he does best and jump on the decks and the one and only DJ darky and magic fingers had come a long way to do a set. They absolutely smashed it and we couldn’t have wanted for a better ending to our special day.

So this was it, the day was drawing to an end and was nearly all over. Me and Slim were stood in a huge circle made up of all of the people we love the most singing Bob Marley's 'Everything's gonna be alright' and I knew that moment for definite that everything was going to be alright. I had married my best friend. We had been through a lot together over the years but not once had we ever turned on each other or left each others sides. He was my rock, my soulmate and he was mine and I couldn't imagine life where I didn’t get to wake up to him every day.

This was the end of one chapter but the beginning of the best yet! If we could do it all over again we would and we wouldn’t change a thing. The memories of that day will last forever.

So the planning is all over, The day of our lives is all over and The wedding blogs are all over!
So what's next?!?.....

All of my Love,
The new Mrs Burling.
(Dedicated to my new husband Slim) xxxxx

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