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September 9, 2013

The Six Questions Everyone Asks When You're Planning a Wedding

My bride-to-be and I

I am getting married Saturday to my best friend and the love of my life Ashley Czuba. This promises to be a special day, likely one I will not soon forget.

Ideally, I will only get married this one time, therefore it's been a long time coming, Ashley and I got engaged on September 22 of last year in Chicago and have been planning our wedding ever since.

A wedding is really two parts: the actual wedding ceremony and the reception. The ceremony is the part that is truly important; you and your spouse exchange promises to love each other forever and join together as one in the eyes of God, the law and your friends and family.

The reception is just one really big party. In order to get people to attend a lovey-dovey, generally boring ceremony you make a deal with the guests: In exchange for traveling a long distance across state lines, sitting in a church for 45 minutes and your travel expenses, we'll give you a free meal, all the booze you can drink and you give us a gift from this list that we specifically picked out for you to buy us.

Now, this may seem a little cynical, but in a way it is true. I can't express how excited I am to marry Ashley and to be her husband, but after nearly a year of planning a wedding it's easy to see the excess in it.

With only a few days to go it's really getting down to the nitty-gritty. We're focusing a lot on the little detailed stuff that pops up at the end. Now generally outside of the people attending our wedding I am fully aware that few people actually care much about it.

That's fine I don't expect you to, but I notice that people keep asking me the same questions over and over again, which is somewhat absurd and so here and now I will answer these questions which apparently are burning a hole in the inquiring minds around me:

1) Are you excited? Nope, not at all, not like I've been with this woman for six years and got down on one knee and asked her to marry me and then plan out a wedding for the next 12 months only to have a blasè "ho-hum" attitude about the whole thing. Of course I'm excited.

2) Are you guys stressed out with the planning? At this point this question comes with an added "yet" at the end for good measure. Have you ever planned a wedding before? If not, then imagine trying to plan prom for your entire family and friends. There are a lot of phone calls, scheduling and planning that goes into it beyond just having a couple venues and a DJ. On top of that there is the constantly changing guest list with people adding a plus-one last minute, dropping their date, coming to either the reception or ceremony but not the other, adding specific food requests, bringing or not bringing children, etc. It's a whole ordeal.

3) Where are you registered? I get asked this all the time by guests and people who weren't invited alike. If you weren't invited you shouldn't feel obligated to buy a gift. If you were invited, the information is on the invitation and our website. Sheesh.

4) Are you getting nervous? This question is also asked in the form of "getting cold feet" or "pre-wedding jitters" or other such varieties. No I'm not. Any nerves I have are related to the fact that 120 people are going to be watching my every move for about seven hours and not at all to the fact I will be married.

5) Where are you going for your honeymoon? What do you care?

6) Are you ready? Do I have a choice? I mean, it's pretty much immovable at this point without incurring a significant financial loss and as I have already stated, I have no second thoughts about my choice so it's going to happen. We haven't been planning this long to simply not be ready at this time.

But as it is, I have a lot to look forward to and I'm very excited to see all of my friends and family, many of whom I haven't seen in years. I am most excited about gaining a wife this weekend. I'm probably going to refer to her as "my wife" as much as I can, even when it's unnecessary and people know who I'm talking about.

If you have never planned a wedding before, let these questions wash over you and consider how you will respond, because believe me, you will be asked.

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Last weekend (July 12) the Goshen Parks Department held its Kid’s Try-athlon to promote childhood fitness and this week (July 18) the new bicycle trail is open to the fairgrounds in Goshen, offering residents a healthy way to get to the annual agriculture exposition. Have you joined the local fitness movement?

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Daniel Riordan has been writing for newspapers since he was 16. Previous newspaper stops include Warsaw and Plymouth. He joined The Goshen News in March 2013 and is enjoying getting to know the city. He has up to this point been able to resist any urge to watch cat videos on YouTube.

I am a journalist for The Goshen News in Goshen, Ind. I handle regional news and am the digital content editor.

Shelly Wilfong is the director of the International Baccalaureat Degree program at Goshen High School in Goshen, Ind.

David Vantress is sports editor at The Goshen News. He is a 1994 journalism graduate of San Diego State University. David has opinions and isn't afraid to share them.

Sam Householder is the chief photographer at The Goshen News. He is a 2010 graduate of Ball State University, with a bachelor's degree in photojournalism. He lives in Goshen with his fiancee, Ashley, and their cat, Rascal.

Roger Schneider is city editor for The Goshen News. He enjoys bicycling, fishing and photography.

Scott Weisser is entertainment and emergency services editor for The Goshen News.