Hi everyone! I'm newly engaged and new to the Knot community. If you can read this (it's going to be long, sorry) and give me your input I would greatly appreciate it!
For some context I'm going to try to sum up our relationship and what's going on. We have been together for a little over a year, and moved in together pretty quickly (after like 2 months). We are both very laid back, relaxed people. We're also kinda shy, both have a very small circle of friends. I'm 25 and have a 3 yr old daughter, my fiancé is 39 and divorced with no kids. He is amazing with my daughter and has really stepped up to fulfill the role of her absent father. He wants to adopt her and it's something we've talked about a lot. (I came from a blended family where my dad adopted my sister so I know how great that can work out!)
My fiancé popped the question a few weeks ago, and it's something we've talked about for pretty much our whole relationship so we've got a good idea of what we want for our wedding. Very casual!!!! I have really bad social anxiety so I want to keep the focus on us as a couple and don't want to be the center of attention.
We want a fall wedding so we're trying to plan for October. Since getting engaged we've had some serious discussions about whether to do it this year or wait until next year, and we've decided to try for this year. Going to look at our venue this weekend and try to book it! I know we can afford it this year and with us wanting to move forward with the adoption process with my daughter, I don't want to wait until fall 2017.
So here are my questions:
1. I know it's tradition to create a registry and expect gifts for your wedding, but we already live together and have a child so we don't really need any of that stuff. Both our families are very generous and I dont want them to buy unnecessary gifts, so how can we explain that we don't want gifts or will only accept cash? I appreciate the thought and don't want to sound rude.
2. This will be my fiancé's 3rd wedding. It's my first (and last!), so I know my friends/family are excited, but I'm worried that his family may not care as much. Any advice on how to talk to him or his family to make sure that our day is just as special for him?
3. Social anxiety. I hate being the center of attention and I'm determined to make our wedding about us as much as possible. It's OUR day, not my day. To help prevent an anxiety attack, I want to avoid a full reception. My idea is just cake/drinks and mingling with music. Maybe dancing but not for me. How do I let our guests know that we want it to be low key?
4. About keeping it low key: I definitely don't want a bridal shower, and I think it's ridiculous to send out engagement announcements, save the dates, AND invitations. Is it rude to just do invitations? (We are keeping it small with only close friends/family, like 50 people)
4. Any and all wedding planning advice is welcome! I don't have much experience with weddings, and need any tips I can get.