Jul 11, 2012

How to have a {gray and yellow} wedding: my tips for keeping it real

I am officially declaring the rest of this week as "marriage week" here on the blog. If you know me at all, you know that advocating for strong, godly marriages is one of my passions. I also advocate strongly for celebrating marriage in my own household, which is why Micah and I are leaving on a staycation all weekend. Did you know the fancy schmancy resorts in Scottsdale are like $80 a night in the summer since no one travels to Arizona this time of year? It's true. And we will be staying at one all weekend, because no 110 degree day ever stopped the Russums from enjoying themselves.

Anyway... sticking with the theme of celebrating marriage, I thought I would share this post with you. I wrote it a while back for a sweet girl and aspiring event planner. Now that I have successfully advanced past the newlywed stage, I don't have much reason to talk about wedding planning, but I don't want these tips to go to waste, especially since I know so many young girls getting married in the near or somewhat near future. So here they are. My top tips for planning a wedding. And then I might never speak on this subject again...

Here's the brief summary, in case you are new around here. My husband, Micah, and I were married on a beautiful July day in a dairy barn converted into a magical wedding venue in a rustic valley just north of Seattle. The weather could not have been more perfect - it was probably around 80 degrees, which is rare for the Pacific Northwest, even in the summer. We were joined by almost 200 of our friends and family on a Sunday evening, and I don't really think I would do anything differently if I could do it all over again. So here are my top three tips when it comes to wedding planning...

Boundaries. Unless you found yourself a rare breed, please realize that most men do NOT like wedding planning. They have not been dreaming of what their wedding day will look like since childhood. In fact, even though they put a ring on your finger, they are probably not too concerned with what it will look like now. Yes, some men will defy this generalization, but most are not going to be stressing the details. So be nice. If your gent does show interest in something... like groomsmen's suits, the font on the invitation, the getaway car, or whatever, consider his viewpoint and encourage his participation. But don't let wedding planning take over your life and definitely don't force it take over his. Micah and I set some boundaries with planning by devoting one night a week to sit down and work on the wedding together. We usually met on a weekday night for dinner and worked on any type of planning that required both us {the guest list, budgeting concerns, Scripture selection for the ceremony, song and food choices, etc.}. The rest of the time I did the planning on my own, because Micah didn't really care what postage stamps I chose for invitations...


Let it be. Once the day arrives, let it go. Things will go wrong; you might get off schedule. None of it matters. One of my friends said it best when she was a bride - "as long as we're married at the end of the night, everything went great." So true. There is nothing like a calm and happy bride all dressed in white on her wedding day. No one wants to see a flustered, controlling bride. Yuck. Our wedding day went pretty smoothly, but it didn't go perfectly according to plan. For example, the  boutonnières  for our dads somehow got misplaced, so our dads ended up wearing our moms' corsages pinned to their jackets and our moms went flower-less. Oh well. Our moms looked beautiful without flowers. No need to stop the wedding.

Get over yourself. If you are a Christian, your wedding, just like your marriage, should be a reflection of Christ. Yes, I think that weddings should be fun and that the bride and groom should look beautiful and all of that, but ultimately a wedding ceremony exists to show the beauty of Christ. Glorify Him in the songs you sing, the Scripture you read, and the vows you say. My wedding was very pretty. The venue was gorgeous. I felt beautiful. Micah looked dashing. The food was great. But do you want to know the only specific compliment I can remember from my wedding day? One couple from our church came up to us at dinner and told us that our ceremony was the most Christ-focused wedding ceremony they had ever witnessed. How can you honor Christ on your wedding day as you enter into a covenant that is meant to reflect Him?

{For other gray and yellow wedding inspiration, see my tutorials for ribbon wavers and table numbers.}


  1. Claudia at Lashes and Beard7/11/12, 11:58 PM

    I agree with everything you said, but specifically your third and final point. Your wedding was gorgeous, the weather was great, and the slushee machine was just fantastic... but the best part was seeing God glorified throughout the entire event, then knowing that it would continue throughout your marriage. When planning my wedding ceremony and writing our vows, I kept thinking to myself, "Glorify God... Glorify God... Remember the Russum wedding... Glorify God..." :) Thanks for showing me, before I'd even met my husband, how important a marriage ceremony truly is.

  2. Samara7/12/12, 12:27 AM

    So glad to read a post about weddings that isn't focused on the decorations etc. I get so tired of people putting so much focus on how it all looks etc and not on the actual marriage itself. We chose to throw our energy into planning a ceremony that honoured God, was evangelical and was a reflection of us. It was an amazing ceremony and we too have received many comments about how Christ focused it was. Definitely the type of compliment you want to be receiving!

    Btw- you looked gorgeous ;-)

  3. [email protected] chasers7/12/12, 1:37 AM

    Um, are you talking about Hidden Meadows?!
    Thats where our reception was at! And only about 5 minutes from where we used to live.

  4. Lyndsy7/12/12, 1:57 AM

    I love you. Seriously. The fact that you aren't just labelled Christian and that you are actually leading a life representing Christ is awesome. What bride says "hey, it's just a wedding" and focus's more on making a day of celebrating the marriage that Christ brought together. That's so great and I want to remember that when the day comes for me to take the walk down the aisle.

  5. Kassie Rew7/12/12, 6:54 AM

    Great post! I'm going to pass it on to a friend of mine that just got engaged! The last point...definitely the most important! =)

  6. Ruthie Hart7/12/12, 9:22 AM

    I am so obsessed with your wedding and colors!

  7. Kassi @ Truly Lovely7/13/12, 10:01 AM

    Your wedding looked beautiful! And all great tips for future brides to be!
    By the way... great minds!!! Our anniversary trip is to a Scottsdale resort too! haha!

  8. Anne @ Cup of Caffeine7/19/12, 5:49 AM

    This is great! I wish more people would say these things straight out, especially when I was planning my wedding.

    I learned quickly that my wedding was only going to be special to my husband and I and God, so I didn't want to be that girl who obsesses about her wedding.

Add comment
Load more...

Please leave a comment. I would love to hear from you!