What Jo Did… Prepared For The Countdown.

14 days. That’s how long I have until I marry him, my MrA. And I can’t ruddy wait.

I’m sat writing this to the sound of ‘One Day Like This’ by Elbow. It’s our engagement party playlist; the one we spent four hours creating. And you know what? No one heard a single song. They were all too busy chatting, drinking, laughing and scoffing the hog roast to take any notice of our carefully planned tunes.

Which brings me onto my final pre-wedding blog – number 7 (I can’t believe how quickly this year has gone!) After a mini-meltdown last week (induced by university deadlines, lesson planning and wedding jobs that weren’t getting done!) I had an epiphany whilst driving home one night…

I was panicking about our Orders of Service (more on this later), when one of our wedding songs came on the iPod. All I could think about was standing at the chapel doors at 2 o’clock on 7th June, on the arm of my lovely dad, looking up the aisle towards the wonderful man I will spend forever with, and thinking… nothing else in the world matters. I simultaneously sang at the top of my voice and blubbed all the way home like some kind of loon, and very cathartic it was too! 🙂

The foremost thoughts of most guests are not to do with all these tiny details that can consume you during the planning process. They are concerned with seeing you get married, catching up with people they don’t get to see nearly enough and helping to ensure you have the best day of your lives. So, worrying about a playlist, only to find it was never needed because your guests were too busy enjoying themselves is actually quite a compliment, really 🙂

Anyway lovelies, you’ll be mightily pleased to hear that it hasn’t all been panicking and crying in the car…


– The dress is SORTED!! Poor Dot. I don’t know whether to buy her flowers or valium after the ridiculous amount of work she’s had to do. Not only has she salvaged what seemed to be an impossible situation with the dress (which, FYI, she discovered had already been altered before I bought it!!), she has done a cracking job on the BM dresses and been a sound giver of advice. To top it all off, when she found out I was struggling to find a comb I liked that would also go with the veil made by MrsA Snr, she asked her daughter if I could borrow the beaut below from Halo & Co:

Luckily for me, her daughter said yes!

Also pictured is my necklace. Needing something between 20” – 22” long and finding that almost every necklace was 16” – 18” was űber-frustrating. I eventually came to a decision after an emailed conversation with the awesome Lisa from LalleBridalJewelry, via Etsy. She has made it longer than in the photo, and used a different chain. Can’t wait for it to arrive!

The earrings I am wearing are my ‘something borrowed’. A Victorian heirloom belonging to our wonderful South African friend, Ursula. I was initially worried that they were the wrong colour (yellow gold) but, as the wedding isn’t matchy-matchy, and because they are so pretty, I don’t care!

You’ve seen my shoes before, I know, but I wanted your thoughts on the red toes. I can hear my mother’s voice shouting ‘Harlot!’ at me for having red nails on W-day, but I think with the ivory and blue, it’s a little nod to Queen Liz – we are getting married in Jubille Week, after all. Thoughts, please!!

Excuse my swollen feet. I’m not pregnant, it’s just a very hot day!

So that’s my outfit pretty much complete! You don’t need to see the garter (even if it is an amazing vintage Mary Quant number, courtesy of my lovely friend Robyn) 😉 And MrsA Snr is just finishing off the veil. This leaves one very important thing… the barnet.

Now, I have A LOT of hair, so how my brilliant friend, Kelly, managed to pull off the Jessica Alba inspired look I asked her for, I’ll never know…

Last point about attire… Can anyone recommend a place to buy pretty nude knickers, as opposed to the Bridget Jones style pants that seem to be everywhere?! Seriously, the only place I’ve seen anything remotely like what I’m after is Asda! I know I love a bargain, but I just can’t bring myself to walk up the aisle in a pair of £2.50 knickers 😉

And The Rest

A whistle stop tour of a few more things we’ve ticked off the list this month:

Our evening invitations and orders of service were designed by our very talented friend, Esther.

The peony from the day invitations was used in the evening ones, but Esther made them look a bit ‘funkier’ and more modern – we are inviting guests to come and party, after all:

My aunt visited a few weeks ago (for Hen Do # 4), bringing with her these SERIOUSLY cute little hearts made by her, and her friend, Jane. Now I don’t know Jane, but she’s been a right legend, helping my aunt create all sort of crafty delights…

The Orders of Service have been almost as problematic as the dress! Having seen the absolutely fantastic design at a blo*dy awesome wedding on RMW (the one with the bride sporting the big pink peony in her hair – amazers!), we set about sourcing the brown kraft card. £40.00 later, we discover that NOBODY will print on it, not even print shops. Well, my inner-Monica came to the fore and I took this as a challenge and ran with it. 3 weeks, no joy. BUT today, today has been a goooooood day – a friend managed to find a printer that worked 🙂

SO pleased we stuck with it – Esther’s design looks fab, and the order of service is a great blend of traditional and rustic. 🙂

We wanted something for guests to sign, but couldn’t decide on a photo, so created this instead…

We FINALLY booked a videographer, as I knew we’d regret not doing so. Richard Knight from Your Perfect Day (about to rebrand as White Dress Films). We saw one of his films on RMW and were blown away by how beautiful it was. Naturally, I stalked the website, watched all the other videos, then contacted Richard. We have been equally blown away by his excellent customer service as we were by his obvious talent for filming.

After hearing me moaning about not having a photo booth booked, our very own Shirley offered the services of her then fiancé, now hubby, Roger. He is a supremely talented music photographer, and has kindly agreed to take the pictures for us! We couldn’t be happier, and cannot WAIT to see the results 🙂

Speaking of photos, we have managed to get hold of four pictures – one of each set of grandparents. I absolutely ADORE these, and can’t wait to have them on display at the wedding.

Sadly, my dad’s parents are no longer with us, so this picture (left) will bring them into the wedding in a small way. My other grandparents (right) are unable to make the wedding, as my grandfather is too frail, but they are VERY happy that we’ve booked Richard to video the day:

Final Thoughts

And that, dear readers, is where we’re at, along with some other bits and bobs that I want to save to share with you after the big day.

I cannot believe it is a whole year since I applied to write for the wonderful RMW, and a whole year of getting to share my ideas, happy moments and wobbles(!) with you lovely lot. Thank you Charlotte and Adam for all your support and advice, for the incredible opportunity to write on the blue polka dots, and for the epic RMW hen do! You guys (and Jenny, Naomi and Vix) are so ruddy brilliant at what you do – how far things have moved for you this year. Keep up the awesomeness!

I must reiterate the others’ words and say an absolutely huge thank you to the ‘RMW Real Brides: Class of 2011/12’. Having our group on Facebook has been an absolute godsend, and getting to meet you all in January was such an incredible experience. You are all brilliant – the most supportive cyber-bride-network a girl could wish for.

Finally, whilst I will leave the thanks for family and friends until W-day, I must finish by thanking the man who started all of this. For the most romantic proposal a girl could wish for; for your incredible, unwavering positivity; for your encouraging words during my teacher training; for letting me listen to Dolly Parton in the car; for your amazing, solve-everything hugs that make everything OK; for your patience, your generosity, and your terrible jokes; for the breakfasts in bed, the perfect cuppas and the Japanese ramens; for looking gorgeous in your W-day suit, in your cricket whites, and even in your lycra cycling attire; for loving me and for wanting to be my husband, I love you. I cannot wait to walk towards you on 7th June knowing that, in a few minutes time, I will be your wife. I will be so, so proud to call you my husband at last.

And there’s only 14 days to go until I get to do just that 🙂

See you when I’m MrsA!

Over & Out,

MrsA-to-be xx

Author: Adam Crohill
Adam likes Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain.

35 thoughts on “What Jo Did… Prepared For The Countdown.

  1. Sobbing at my desk over the run down of your time together, what a beautifully simple and fantastic idea. It really will be the best day of your life, cherish EVERY second 🙂 Wishing you the happiest day possible. x

  2. PS. I LOVE how you are having your hair!! Might have to steal that look for a wedding I’m attending in the summer!

  3. What a wonderful post, bought a little tear to my eye. Hope you have a wonderful day, enjoy every minute of it 🙂

    Am also loving the hairstyle, may have to stash that pic to show my hairdresser (when I get that far!) although not quite sure how it will work with fine blonde hair! hee hee

    Plus I would ALWAYS opt for colourful nail/toe-nail polish – there will be no nude/ivory/french manicures on any of my nails on my wedding day!! 😉


  4. I’ll second that, this made me cry as well!! lovely words and makes me think how much I can’t wait for our day. Loving the necklace inspiration and totally dig the red toe nails, go for it 🙂

    Oh and I want your hair!!! so much of it!

    Hope your day is utterly wonderful and have enjoyed reading your posts, us newbie “Real Brides” have been discussing how much we have to live up to! with love xx

  5. Ok so I always read comments that say “I am blubbing” and I think to myself…Come on ladies!! But your little note at the end to Mr A…well that made me well right up!!

    I love love love your order of service, so cute. And def go with the red nails 😉

    Big love to you Jo, enjoy these last 14 days!

  6. Hi Jo,

    I can’t believe this is your last post!!!! That necklace is AMAZING – between this morning’s little number and yours, i’m seriously considering this now…. it’s not in the budget!!!

    I love love love the hair – it looks so beautiful and it will go so well with your dress too. If you’ve got it, you should flaunt it, and you missy certainly have a top-notch barnet!

    Your evening invites and order or service look super – I’m sure Adam will be very happy to see the continuity in your event branding throughout your stationery!

    I almost totally burst out crying at your story, it’s lovely and such a good idea. It’ll be lovely to have something to hang on your own wall with all your guests’ signatures to remind you forever of your big day.

    So many other things to comment on…. but i should probably leave some space for the others. Good luck Jo, and most importantly, have fun on your day!! You’ve worked so so hard and it’s all going to pay off, I can tell! Looking forward to seeing you on the other side…..


    PS Roger and Shirley – you don’t fancy making a trip to Brittany in July for a second photobooth extraordinaire? 🙂

  7. I too am sitting am my desk welling up at that last little thank you to your future hubby! Good luck for the big day, everything sounds wonderful!
    I’m getting married on that weekend next year, got a loooot (i.e. everything bar venue!) to do beforehand tho…

  8. Jo….you are such a beauty. And you write so beautifully and from the heart.

    And although I will be very sad to see your real bride-ness come to an end I am very VERY excited to see your amazing wedding.

    Big Love and Kisses

    Charlotte xxx

  9. Jojo! I am so excited about seeing your wedding, you are so beautiful and such a lovely person!

    I love your last post and all your hard work clearly is paying off massively!!

    And your hair…..wow!!! It is going to look epic with that amazing frock!!

    Can’t wait to read all about it!

  10. FOR YOUR UNDERWEAR- MYLA!!!! its amazing. I got their silk knickers (sooooo comfy) they are more peachy then nude, but blimey they are comfy and pretty 🙂

  11. NOOOOOO it can’t be!!!!

    I know mine came around quickly but how can it be your turn already????

    And what a last post! Epic!!!!

    Love all the DIY and stationary details and your hair and jewellery are equally STUNNING!!!!

    What a lucky boy you have to be marrying such a beautifully stunning lady inside and out!!!!

    Soak it all in!!!! And Breath!!!!


    Me x

  12. JOOOOOOOO, NOOOOOOOO, don’t GOOOOOOOO, I will be LOOOOOOW just so YOU’KNOW. Lyrical genius right here.

    On a serious note though, your last paragraph got me!!! How cute, and how can you refuse a man in lycra?????

    Lovin the back jewels which will look amazing with your hair, YOUR HAIR…I love by the way. What a talented lady indeed.

    No idea about knickers I’m afraid, I’m a serial ‘granny panter’ much to Andy’s disappointment.

    I love how you would have come full circle, meeting, dating and marrying at Stowe.

    Love the ‘Word Story’ am going get my thinking cap on and see if I can come up with one too.

    Lastly, 14 days holy smokes!!!!! All the luck in the world for your big day. Can’t wait to see the pics, you are gorgeous xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  13. *I don’t mean he proposed in lycra, just that he wears it btw. Not exactly a venice holiday staple after all!

  14. Jo, you’ve just made me cry and believe me that is not a pretty sight!! I’ve followed all the real brides stories with interest this year but yours in particular has been great because I am getting married 2 days after you. I have been so interested to see what you have been getting up to and have been pleased when I have at about the same stage!!

    Your hair looks amazing! Love, love, love it. And deffo go for the red nails. The contrasting colours look fabulous!

    I’ll be thinking of you on the 7th when I’m doing my final prep. Hope you have a truly wonderful day. Can’t wait to hear all about it.


    Oh and thanks for the Mary Quant garter mention. I was totally stuck on what to do for my something blue and all the garters I’d seen looked really itchy. Just been onto a fab website and picked myself up an original Mary Quant white garter with a blue bow. Consider that little dilemma SORTED with a capital S!!!

  15. Jo you’r final paragraph made me cry! It’s lucky I’m the last one in the office!

    I hope you have a wonderful wonderful day, massive congratulations and I look forward to reading your report!


    Lots of love xxxx

  16. GOOSEBUMPS, tears and smiles! Congratulations, good luck and thanks for sharing with us – can’t wait to hear about your day.

  17. Hi beauts!

    Thank you for all the lovely messages – I must admit that writing it made me teary – I’m an emotional wreck at the moment – keep on blubbing at the most silly things!!! 😉

    @Lydia – sorry for making you blub too! And thank you for the hair love – my friend is a genius!!

    @Rebecca – hello fellow Real Bride 😉 Oooh, yes – steal away. If you type ‘Blake Lively plaits’ into Google, you’ll get a similar style, but she has finer hair – it’s gorgeous! Also, you have ages to grow it AND you can have a few entensions put in 😉

    @ Miss Vix – hello ANOTHER fellow RB 🙂 Oooh, the necklace arrived today and looks even better in real life! So happy – must remove before MrA gets home!!!

    @ Lucy – Awww, thank you sweetie. I can’t wait either!! So close 🙂

    @ Debi – Sorry to have broken your blubbing rule. He he!! I ALWAYS cry at RMW. And you’re the third person to say ‘go for it’ with the nails, so I ruddy well will!

    @ Celine – My lovely French fancy! Thank you 🙂 I hope Adam approves of the stationery – he’s like some kind of paper guru!

    @ Daphne – thank you. Don’t worry about having lots to do – I felt like this right up until last week, but it’s all starting to come together now (good job, seeing as the wedding is in 2 weeks!)

    @ Faye – nooooo, another crier – sorry sweets!!

    @ Charlotte – Thank you, and write back at you with the beauty and the great writing, you fantastic Blog Queen, you! Don’t even get me started on this being my last post – ’tis the end of a *very fun* era!! *SOB*

    @ Alex – alreeeeeet, Mrs M? Gawd, I wish we all lived closer to each other so we could meet more often!! Thank you, and I hope you’re right about the hair/dress situ – it#s really hard putting a look together bit by bit, not knowing how it’ll look overall!

    @ Ooooh, Amy – good shout – I have a Myla near me (Bicester Village) so will pop over there next week 🙂

    @ Amanda – I know! It’s mad how fast this year has gone!! So glad you approve of the DIY bits, being the goddess of DIY! Seriously can’t wait to see the write up of your day 🙂

    @ Kelly – lyrical master… Why are you teaching PE and not Music/English? 😉 Ha ha – you crack me up – how funny would it have been if Phil HAD proposed in lycra?! As for the pants situ, I love a granny pant, but feel I should make a change for W-day 😉

    @ Victoria – OMG, you’re 16 days away from being a wifey 🙂 TOO exciting!! I’ll be thinking of you when I’m on my mini-moon!! And the Mary Quant garter – uh-mazin’! So glad you got one – they’re so cute 🙂 Good luck with the last few weeks sweetie!

    @ Kitty – ANOTHER fellow RB – hi lovely! I’m lucky to have a seat in my office that faces out a window, so I blub in confidence 😉 Hope you’re loving being on the RMW team – you’ll have a great year!!

    @ LJ – Ahhh, thank you, thank you. Can’t wait to share it with you all!! 🙂

  18. ha ha – just laughing at your your emoticons Jo – good work… 14 in one comment – I think that is a new RMW record.

    I think we’ll all miss you Jo, I’m so pleased that one day you decided you wanted to be an RMW real bride. It wouldn’t have been the same without you.

    All the best for 14 (nearly 13 now) days time.

    Adam x

  19. Oooooh, I actually have a tear in my eye Lovely! I can’t wait to see you in two weeks time. I remember getting your text about the proposal whilst I was at Falmouth, as the boys were doing their final progress check on the Merlin, and I did a little celebration dance for you, much to their amusement!

    And as for your little creation for signage – all of it is SO you, I just LOVE it.

    See you in two weeks….. Lots of Love

    Gemma xoxo

  20. Hi Jo – I also can’t believe this is your last post, I’m going to miss your regular updates. Loving the deep red nail polish, I’d like some of that please 🙂

    Also, if you could just arrange for a hair transplant from you to me, I’d be a very happy lady indeed. Alternatively I may have to buy some sort of wig pre-made into your up do as its particularly gorgeous.

    Thank you for the shout out to Rog (who is currently out shooting Westlife – with a camera not gun!) … he’s very happy that he could help you out. I’m currently trying to work out how I can leave the kids for an evening so I can come have a sneaky peak at your dress & wedding 🙂

    @Celine – if you’re happy to cover the travelling expenses and accommodation then I’m sure Rog would probably consider doing a photobooth for you … it would be a real hardship having to spend a weekend in France. Honestly. hehe.

  21. (manages to stop sobbing to write a small reply) Beautiful gorgeous Jo and your wonderful Mr A, here’s to the happiest of days, god you’re going to look stunning! Now can I also borrow those amazing hearts please!!!

  22. Jo, my lovely ‘nearly’ wedding twin! Have an absolutely awesome day. This post has made me emotional!!! And I’m not one to get teary. Cannot wait to see the pics and hear all about your day. By the way, you’ve been fabulous to ‘chat’ to and always giving the Real brides little peps and very kind words. You deserve to have a wonderful wonderful day! Eeeek 2 weeks! Where did the time go? x x x

  23. @ Adam – Oooh, blimey! You’re right – emoticon overload! Surprised it didn’t crash the site with all its smiley/winking-ness! Ooops! On the plus side, an RMW reocd is something to be proud of!!
    I will miss you and Charlotte muchly too! I may just travel to Brum every now and then, to visit RMW HQ!

    @ Gemma – I remember ending that proposal text, and being frustrated that, being in Italy, I couldn’t call people! Can’t wait to see you in two weeks presh 😉

    @ Shirley – it is my pleasure – we can’t wait to have Rog there (and maybe you, too!!) Also, I will chopping these locks off after W-day, so we could have them made into extensions…?! Also – Westlife? How blo*dy cool is that?! Rachel Beasley will be well jel!

    @ Jenny – the hearts are yours to borow, along with the tea cups, my lovely 🙂

    @ Abi!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So close now, my gorgeous almost wedding twinny! No idea where that time went, but it’s going to be AWESOME! x

  24. Jo, bit late to reply sorry! Loved your last post, your writing (esp the last para) is beautiful. Can’t wait to see your wedding. I too have a cycling mad fiance who sports lycra on a regular basis…apparently they are called MAMIL’s (middle age men in lycra….!) ha ha xxx

  25. All I can say is, it is a good job no-one else was in my office as I read this through big teary eyes!!

    All the photos look amazing and I am sure you will have an amazing wedding day!

    It is only 20 days till our wedding now and it is all starting to feel very surreal!!!

  26. @ Lisa – ha ha! MAMIL – this is an acronym that has been missing from my life for too long. I shall rectify this immediately!

    @ Carol – thank you presh, and heaps of love and GOOD LUCK for your W-day. Long may this weather continue. (Was worried about being a sweaty betty in the heat, but have been using Driclor and it’s amazing!)

  27. Teary as well! Jo I love your writing and have really enjoyed following your journey! I love all your choices esp the hair and we definitely have to stay in touch on the real brides fb forum – you are right – it is the best!!
    Rachie xo

  28. Good luck, lovely Jo. It’s been a pleasure to get to know you through the Real Brides FB group. I really can’t wait to see your write up and pictures. Have a fantastic wedding. Big smooches. x

  29. Dear Jo,
    I know you will make our lovely son a wonderful wife and will add a new and exciting dimension to our family. It has been a roll a coaster ride with all the preparations but you are nearly there. Keep smiling

  30. Beautiful post my lovely! Made me cry as always….so you are yet to write on where I don’t! I cannot wait to share your big day with you, it will be truly amazing! Much love.Xxxxxxx

  31. Dear Jo, I love your posts. I agree with Amy, have a look at the Myla site, that’s where my nude knickers are from. x

  32. Amazing!!!! Have shed a tear! Can’t wait to see it all take shape next week! Just need to sort my bump friendly dress now!!!!

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