Real newlyweds give wedding planning tips based on their experience.

The Falters’ wedding took place on Sept. 15, 2018, at a family member’s home.

If you could do anything about your wedding differently, what would you change and why?    

Renee: I would’ve enjoyed a live band over a DJ. Unfortunately, live bands are much more expensive, and a band didn’t fit into our budget.

Cy: We should have given ourselves more time to plan our wedding; we didn’t realize how much time goes into all the different things involved. Everything turned out beautifully, but there were a couple weeks we were very stressed on whether or not we’d get everything done in time.

What are you happy you spent money on?        

R: A high-quality photographer and the photo booth.

C: Hiring a great photographer is a must. Wedding days fly by, and it’s almost impossible to be able to take it all in. Being able to see all of the great pictures of our wedding kept us from missing out on anything.

What do you think you could have done without?          

C: Probably wedding favors; a lot got left behind.

What was your biggest surprise when planning your wedding?               

R: How quickly expenses add up. Getting married is not cheap!

C: Just the overall amount of time it takes to get everything perfect. There are so many small details to a wedding you wouldn’t even think about.

What do you wish you’d known before you started planning?  

R: That guests generally don’t notice details, so don’t sweat the small stuff.

C: It’s very hard to have a small wedding. We thought we could do a wedding with 50 or 60 people, but it adds up quick when you start making a guest list. We ended up having over 125 people.

Did you experience any wedding-day snafus?

R: Our DJ was a friend of the groom, and he didn’t prepare playlists accordingly. Thankfully I had multiple playlists on my phone ready to go, so that was remedied pretty quickly.

Did you and your fiancé get into any silly arguments?   

C: We made our own [reception] venue out of an old warehouse, which turned out to be a lot more stressful than we expected.

R: We did an extraordinary amount of physical labor at Falters [Fine Meats / Herman Falter Packing Co., the groom’s family’s business] in preparation for the reception, and after around the 100th hour of work, we snapped. Lack of air conditioning, heavy lifting, mechanical failures with the fork lift and tractor, filling in pot holes, cleaning and painting had finally taken its toll on us, and we took it out on each other.

C: We had a few tough days where we thought we’d get more done than we were able to, which could lead to small arguments.

R: All we needed was a little break, and we were right back at it.

C: [We realized we had to] just be patient with each other; we were both working toward the same goal.

Any dress-shopping advice?

R: Don’t spend too much on a dress you’re only going to wear once! I’m all about practicality.

What about menswear?

C: Get yourself a tailored suit! You won’t regret it.

Do you have any general advice for couples currently planning their weddings?             

R: Take it one day at a time. Don’t sweat the small stuff; everything will fall into place. What’s important is enjoying the presence of all of your favorite people. They are there to celebrate love, family and friendship.

C: Take your time; be patient with each other, and everything will be great.

Do you have any general marriage advice, as a newlywed?

R: Make [spending] time together and experiencing new things a priority. Push yourself and each other to grow, even when it’s hard.

C: Support and appreciate each other!