Ideas and Inspiration

10 dates to plan happily-ever-after.

So you’re planning your wedding and starting a wonderful new phase of your life. As you plan the cake, dress design, invitation list and venue decorations, also plan your lives so that your happy day is the beginning of happily ever after.

  • It’s never a great time to confront the sober facts: that merging your money, your belongings and your plans can make or break your relationship. Which group will you both belong to in 10 years’ time - the together forever group or the ‘other 50%’ who’ve ended in divorce? Of course, you’ll be in the first camp! A little planning now will guarantee it. The most important thing is to communicate: your ideas, needs and wants. Book these ten date nights in with your partner before the wedding to plan for happily ever.
  • Date #1: A clear vision:

    A shared set of plans and goals for the foreseeable future will keep you inspired when the going gets tough. Where do you want to live? Do you want children? What are your financial goals? Career ambitions? What holidays do you dream about? Get excited and record it all! Vision boards are a great way to capture your dreams.
  • Date # 2: Time management:

    Think about how each of you manage your time. Chances are it’s going to be different. Take your shared goals (above) and start plotting important dates and events in your diary now before other events take over. Check each others’ diaries to make sure you’ve made time for all the important events and tasks.
  • Date # 3: Purge before you merge:

    If you’ve got a wedding registry, you’re about to receive lots of beautiful items. Now’s the time to get rid of what you don’t need. Who’s garlic crusher will make it into the second drawer? You don’t need two. Give each other a challenge to get rid of 40% of your stuff.
  • Date # 4: Health check:

    Time to get up close and personal. What have you been screened for? Do you both have health insurance? You may need to change your insurance plan now in time for children. Will you exercise together? Discuss your family’s health history. Put all your health and wellbeing dates and check-ups in your diaries and make them happen.
  • Date # 5: Keeping your paper Flowing:

    Who is going to be the ‘paper captain’ in your house? Or will you share some of the tasks, e.g. paying bills, correspondence, etc? It starts with the wedding thank-you’s and then the paper just keeps flowing from there. Set up your paper management system now and avoid stress and arguments downstream.
  • Date # 6: Sharing your home office:

    It doesn’t have to be fancy but it needs to be well organised. If your’s is not set up well, then do this before you get married so you can come home and hit the ground running.
  • Date # 7: Managing your money:

    Money is the cause of most of the arguments so set out your financial goals now. Come clean and admit all of your expenditures and create a budget to pay for your goals. A simple financial system will keep you on track.
  • Date # 8: What’s for dinner?:

    Some partners suffer from culinary amnesia: they cook to impress in the early years and then gradually ‘forget’ how to boil water. Heard of that dreadful disease? Time to talk now about who’s going to cook dinner on what nights. Don’t fall into the trap of just doing it because no-one else will. Easy meal planning systems will continue to make mealtimes a lovely time to connect when you both get back into your busy lives after the honeymoon.
  • Date # 9: Children?

    If you haven’t already started your family yet, discuss how many children you’re going to have and how you want to raise them. Who’s going to look after them? Which one of you will take time off work after the baby(s) are born?
  • Date # 10: Who will feature in your future?

    After your wedding, you’ll enjoy a sociable time. Talk about all the different groups of people important to you: your friends, extended family, colleagues, sporting and community groups. How do you want to keep in touch with them all and how can you support each other to do that?
  • For tips, books and inspiration on organising your ideal life, visit www.didyourememberthemilk.com.au
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