It's finally here, the year of the wedding!

The Chinese say that 2017 is the year of the rooster.  I, however, have branded it the year of the wedding.

The year that I feel like I've been waiting for forever is finally here: when Tom and I tie the knot and I get to stand beside my best friend while she marries her soul mate.  We've been counting down to it for so long it almost doesn't feel real.  It's actually 2017.

I had all the intentions of writing this post on New Year's Eve/Day, to coincide with the start of 2017.  But New Year wasn't exactly a great time, so it doesn't feel like 2017 has really started for me until today.

But, after a really rough start, I finally feel like my normal self again.  I swear I've counted five new wrinkles since Saturday so it's a bloody good job!

Anyway, back to the matter at hand - 2017 is here!

In just over 100 days I will marry the apple of my eye and I am so excited.  It'll be almost two years since we got engaged.  I remember our wedding date feeling like such a long time away, but it has honestly gone so fast.  I can't believe this time two years ago I was still trying to keep the surprise trip to Riga under wraps, while Tom was planning a whole surprise of his own.

The wedding planning side is essentially complete now, thank God!  While it was fun going dress shopping for me and my bridesmaids, trying cake flavours, discussing flowers and picking our wedding rings, it wasn't half a stressful process.  All that I have left to do now is find my bridesmaids some shoes and find us all a make-up artist.

I swear I didn't realise how expensive make-up artists were.  I was prepared for the cost of everything else, you expect things like your photographer and cake to be a certain price, but I was so not ready for how expensive a make-up artist is going to be.  One person quoted £100 for my make-up, which included a trial.  For bridesmaids, it was £75 per person (which also included a trial) or £40 just for the day.  The same person was then offering full face of make-up for less than a third of the bridal make-up cost during the festive party season.  I get that everything attached to a wedding is inevitably more expensive, but that just seems a bit extreme to me.

The cost aside, I am still struggling to find someone.  I know absolutely nothing about make-up, it's really not my forte at all.  Day-to-day I wear the absolute minimum, taking probably less than two minutes to slap it all on.  When I go out I, of course, make more of an effort, but even then I have no idea what I am doing.

So when it comes to the wedding make-up I don't know what I want, other than to look pretty.  I don't want anything too dramatic or theatrical, but I don't want to look like I haven't got any make-up on.  If anyone knows any make-up artists local to Selby/York/Leeds who could help me realise what I want and doesn't charge the earth then please do let me know.

We also have our honeymoon left to book.  We know where we are going, we just need to finalise the dates and hotels with the lovely lady who is sorting it all out.  Hopefully we should have all that done by the end of January then it's something else for us to look forward to.

As if all the exciting things me and Tom have to look forward to this year weren't enough, my best friend is also getting married.

Soph and I have been friends since high school.  Since then, we've gone through college together, survived me moving away to university for three years, and celebrated all our landmark moments together.  The last two years have been so exciting as we've planned our big days together.  We're very, very similar in ours taste, likes and dislikes, so we were both conscious of wanting the same thing.  Thankfully we have avoided any Bride Wars-esque incidents and it has been such a special time.

To be able to plan your own wedding with your best friend is special.  But to both be planning them at the same time is amazing.  I do worry, though, when they're both done what our next project will be.  I'd like to say babies, but I'm not sure whether we're in sync enough to time that to coincide together.  I wouldn't put anything past us, though!

This year is going to be so, so exciting.  It maybe didn't get off to the best of starts, but there is so much to look forward to.

Here's to 2017, may yours be wonderful and filled with love and happiness.

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