Triple B's newest Road to Mrs. blogger Nicole and her fiance, Leonard!

Ladies and gents, it is time for me to pass the Road to Mrs. baton. Now that I’m officially a Mrs., I’m happy to present to you Triple B’s latest resident bride-to-be, Nicole! She’s a bubbly Los Angeles-based attorney who is preparing to wed a member of the Armed Forces (Air Force to be exact) and ecstatic to share her wedding planning highs and lows with us every Thursday for the next few months. After reading her first post below, give her a warm Triple B welcome in the comments. (Thanks in advance!)

So much to do…So little time.

Like many other women, I got engaged on Christmas Day! I did what every typical bride does: called my mom, then my dad, then my closest friends. I took approximately 20 pictures of my ring to get the one good shot that would be sent and forwarded to numerous friends and family. I spent the entire day looking and relooking at my finger.

The next day I set out to plan an entire wedding in six (yes 6) months! According to numerous websites, most engagements last 13 to 18 months and many people say you need a solid year to plan a good wedding. Luckily for me I had already began “preplanning.”

What is “preplanning?” Well prior to my actual engagement I had already picked a date and selected a venue (of which I’d also toured with my fiancé). I’d seen enough episodes of Say Yes to the Dress to know which silhouettes would best fit my body type and had researched local dress boutiques to know which ones carried the designers I liked. I had an idea of what I wanted to serve at dinner and already knew what kind of ceremony music I wanted. I’d researched everything from bakers to wedding favors. I had bookmarked all of my favorite wedding websites and blogs (including Black Bridal Bliss). I’d decided on colors and had a working guest list. And yes, I’d done all this without a ring.

Now let me be clear, I do not recommend “preplanning” a wedding to a man who has not yet proposed to everyone. Some may say this behavior is down right crazy and in some situations I’d agree. But in my situation, my fiancé and I had discussed getting married and our future on numerous occasions. Many of these conversations he brought up. Last January, I moved from Houston to Los Angeles to be with my man who is active duty in the Air Force. Prior to this move we discussed everything from where the wedding would take place to how many kids we wanted to have. I got a lot of slack for relocating for my man without a ring. But I knew our relationship and situation better than anyone else. So the obvious cart-before-the-horse comment I received from my cousin who was recently engaged and also planning a wedding didn’t phase me at all.

Ladies, you know your relationship and your partner better than anyone else. Listen to what he says and watch what he does. If you discuss your future together and you two are on one accord then it’s okay to read Black Bridal Bliss daily for tips and ideas. If he doesn’t even let you sleep over and you’ve never met his friends and family — well that’s another story.

Let me also be clear that there’s a difference between preplanning and actually planning. Yes, I’d toured my venue and knew that my date was available but I did not put down the $5000 non refundable deposit required to hold my date. Nor did I go into bridal salons trying on and buying dresses. Those things are certainly overboard and even considered bad luck. I also didn’t give my boyfriend an ultimatum or deadline on when he should proposed. We agreed to a summer wedding and I was confident that I’d have a ring in enough time to pull that off. If not, I’d just have to change my colors from blush to burnt orange and pull of a fall wedding instead. I also kept most of my thoughts and ideas about our wedding to myself. As confident as I was about our future together, I had read enough Very Smart Brothers and Cousin Mars blog posts to know that men don’t want to feel pressured into making decisions. So I watched my recorded episodes of Four Weddings in private and keep a password protected folder on my computer which contained all my wedding ideas. Now, with ring in place I’m ready to get this show on the road.

Six months and counting!

What are your thoughts on “pre-planning” for a wedding? Crazy or genius?