It is her special day
When Daniel Howie popped the question to his new bride, Katie, she was a doctorate student in the marketing department at the University of Mississippi with little free time on her hands, and certainly not enough to plan a wedding. "When he proposed, I told him I didn't have time to plan a wedding and it would be mostly up to him," Katie said of her husband of six months. "He was incredibly organized and did an awesome job."
Howie took on the challenge and set out planning their wedding. Working for First Presbyterian Church for the past nine years gave him an advantage over his wife who lived her entire life in Springfield, Mo., before moving to Oxford about a year prior to her engagement. "I already know all the vendors, pastors, florists, caterers, preachers — you name it," he said. Howie said he planned about 80 percent of the wedding with Katie making about 20 percent of the decisions. While making the arrangements, Howie noticed some vendors had a hard time accepting his word as final. "If I told the cake lady that's what I wanted, she asked me to 'check with the bride,'" he said. Even Katie's parents entrusted their daughter's big day to Howie. "They are amazing people and they trusted me to handle it all without expectations," he said.
The couple were married in luly 2013 at First Presbyterian Church in Oxford. An all-invited reception was held immediately following in the fellowship hall at the church and then family and close friends enjoyed dinner, dancing and drinks at Castle Hill. The bridesmaids wore navy and the groomsmen wore gray with mint green as an accent color.The biggest challenge for Howie was his wife's wedding gown. Standing just 5 feet tall and weighing less than 100 pounds, "soaking wet," the gown she chose needed a lot of alterations. "We went through three different ladies until we found one who could make it work and, all the while, I couldn't see her in it," he recalled. "It was quite stressful and we got it done four days before the wedding.
On the next-to-last person we went to, she texted me from the other room telling me to find someone else to fix it. We were five days before the wedding. I had to call everyone I know to get in to see someone. Incredibly stressful." Howie admits he was getting a bit nervous with the gown ordeal. Wedding planning isn't something anyone with no experience should take on by themselves, he suggests. "I was lucky in the fact that I knew what I was doing," he said. "Having worked for a church for more than 10 years. But I don't know if the 'average Joe' could, or should, pick it up on their own." The day went off without a hitch, Howie said, and he now has a greater appreciation for how much hard work goes into planning large events. But he did it for Katie, his wife and he'd do it again. "I did it because I love her and would do anything to make her life happy and easier," he said. "That's why I married her."
In a story in the New York Times, Rob Johnsen, one of four men who founded mywedding.com 11 years ago, said he has noticed a trend of grooms getting more involved in their own weddings. He said, on his website, there are 100,000-plus links to free wedding websites and 65 percent of those sites, he said, have been created by men. "In American culture, weddings have always been all about the bride," Johnsen told the NYT. "But couples are now getting married later in life and as a result, they are paying for their own weddings, as opposed to having their parents pay. So a groom is making this kind of investment is more likely to take a more serious interest in the decision-making process, and that has greatly contributed to the trend." Will Moore admits he didn't do a whole lot when it came to planning the wedding but he attempted to take more of an active role than most men have traditionally done in the past.
"I picked out the tuxes; submitted the announcements in the local papers; I also scheduled the premarital counseling with our pastor, Pat Ward, and I picked out the gifts for my groomsmen (initialed shaving bags with a box of Winchester .22 ammo in each one since he's an engineer at the Winchester plant), my parents, Tiffany (his bride) and my grannies," Moore said. Moore and Tiffany were married Oct. 5, 2013, at the Paris-Yates Chapel on the campus of the University of Mississippi. The traditional wedding colors were Tiffany blue, gray and black. "People said it was sweet and personal," Tiffany said. "It was awesome. Everyone had a blast."
Moore attended the meetings with the Oxford-University Club where the reception was held and went with Tiffany to Patricia Farrish's in Batesville to taste cake and design his groom's cake as well. "We both picked out the music we wanted played at the reception," he said. "I didn't have much to do with the chapel, flowers, decorations and the organist." Moore said he felt it most important to make sure the couple had the premarital counseling session at their church, The Orchard. "As the husband, I know I'm suppose to be the leader in most areas, but this was important because I wanted to make sure we didn't lose sight of us coming together in holy matrimony before God amongst the hustle and bustle of the wedding and the ceremony and all that goes with it," he said. Moore said all-in-all he may have done about 10 percent of planning but knew some of the things he did, while small, helped to take some of the pressure off his bride. "There were things I wanted to have my own input on as well, like food and music," he said. "I'm sure every couple is different, but for us, it was important that it was about us and what we wanted it to be."
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