The reception is undeniably the best and most memorable part of an Ethiopian Wedding. Great food is served buffet-style, including staple dishes such as Injera (Ethiopian spongy bread), Doro wot (a spicy stew made with chicken and eggs), and Kitfo (raw minced beef mixed with butter and spices). After dinner, the couple accompanied by their friends and family will dance to modern and traditional music followed by the cake cutting ceremony and champagne toast. To end the night, elders are seated in a row as the couple and their wedding party bow down to kiss the elders’ knees (which is a sign of respect in Ethiopian Tradition).
Melse is the post-wedding celebration and takes place a day after the wedding. During the Melse, traditional clothing is worn; Habesha Kemis for women and Habesha Libs for men. The Bride and her party will spend several hours getting their hair braided and getting bridal henna tattoo accompanied by a LOT of gold to accessories.
The Melse is an intimate celebration for close family and friends. Again, there will be traditional Ethiopian food(injera) served accompanied with Tej, which is a traditional beverage made with fermented honey. The bride and groom will conduct a bread cutting ceremony which represents their unity as newly-weds, and family and friends enjoy dancing and celebrate the newly married couple while having Buna(coffee) during a traditional coffee ceremony.
As if two days weren’t enough, The Melse is followed by a third event called Kelekel, which takes place on the third day of the wedding. This tradition is dedicated mostly to extended family who could not attend the main ceremony. This also gives everyone a chance to come together one last time before they bid the newlyweds farewell.
- Ethiopian culture is very rich. If you enjoyed this post, comment below and tell us what country you would like to explore next.
Do the disagreements and arguments seem to be mounting as your wedding day draws near? There’s more at work than just wedding stress. The mounting pressure of your wedding could be causing sleep loss. Whenever you get less than seven hours of sleep, you enter a state of sleep deprivation. Lack of sleep may not start your arguments but it adds fuel to the fire so that small disagreements turn into arguments you regret. Thankfully, you can put a damper on fights by making sleep a priority.
The Emotional Chaos of Sleep Deprivation
The effects of sleep loss affect many of the body’s systems, but, when it comes to your emotions, it’s the brain you need to worry about.
Most of your emotional processing takes place in a part of the brain called the amygdala. Though small, it has a big impact on your behavior. When you don’t get enough sleep, the amygdala goes into overdrive, especially in response to negative thoughts and events. As activity goes up in this part of the brain, emotional outbursts full of anger, anxiety, and/or sadness are common.
Unfortunately, the amygdala isn’t the only part of the brain that changes with sleep deprivation. The prefrontal cortex, an area of the brain that’s responsible for executive functions like decision-making, logic, and reason, slows and reduces its influence over your emotions. Sleep deprivation creates the perfect storm for arguments with high emotions and low logic.
Mounting stress and continued sleep deprivation feed into one another until you hardly feel like yourself. While your first step is recognizing the stress/sleep deprivation cycle, the second is to put sleep near the top of your priority list and get reason back in control.
Sleep Brings Balance
Sleep is the body’s healer, recharger, and regulator. The timing and duration of your sleep cycle are highly responsive to your personal habits. That gives you the power get better sleep with sleep supportive conditions and behavior. In the process, you’ll gain the ability to diffuse disagreements between you and your partner.
Prep the Bedroom
For deep, restful sleep to take place, the bedroom has to be a sacred sleep space. Gym equipment and your home office can send your brain the wrong message so they belong in another part of the house.
Is your bedroom cool, dark, and quiet? If not you may need to change your window coverings or get a white noise machine to block out noisy neighbors. Eliminate as many distractions and interruptions as possible. And, of course, make sure the bed is inviting with comfortable bedding and a mattress that supports your weight and sleep style.
Keep a Sleep Schedule
Your body controls your sleep cycle using predictable 24-hour cycles. These are called circadian rhythms. When you keep a consistent bedtime, you support and strengthen your body’s response to these rhythms. Plus, your brain will automatically time the release of sleep hormones to follow your preferred schedule as long as you consistently go to bed at the same time.
Make (Non-Wedding Related) Time for Your Partner
Your relationship with your partner always takes precedence over wedding plans. As you’re working on better sleep and moving closer to your wedding day, be sure to make time for your partner. Spend at least some of that time
talking about things other than the wedding. Enjoy a romantic dinner or veg out on the couch watching your favorite movie while eating popcorn. Quality time together will remind you why you’re getting married in the first place.
Disagreements happen, but at least when you’re getting enough sleep, you know your emotions aren’t running away with you. Rely on your wedding planner and turn to your partner so the two of you can grow closer as you prepare for a new life together.
Contribuutor: Sarah Johnson
Congratulations! He popped the question. You said yes. You’ve posted the infamous ring pic on Instagram (not before calling mom and dad, I hope).
Now you’re ready to start wedding planning and selecting your bridal party is a pretty big decision that you will have to make. However, it’s not one that needs to be made right away. Take some time and figure out who’s going to keep you sane when everyone has an opinion to share? Who’s going to be you’re A-Team?
Here are a couple tips to consider when choosing the members of your bridal party.
- Include family & friends that support your relationship
- Choose someone that genuinely wants the best for both of you and someone who understands marriage. Choose a friend that you can talk to when things get rough and you need a reminder of the vows you took.
- Be up front about your expectations
- There’s more to being in a wedding than just throwing on a pretty dress or a snazzy tux. Let you’re A-Team know just how much money and time needs to be invested in your wedding and the festivities leading up to the big day.
The men and women that will be standing by your side on your wedding day have a lot of responsibilities on their hands and you definitely need someone who’s going to stick it out and be there through the good, bad, and ugly.
We know how much you love our Tuesday Tips and Fun Fact Friday so we’re just gonna get down to the really nitty gritty. Each week we’ll dig a little deeper and give you the full story behind these tips.
Make sure you join us next week for more insight on the roles and responsibilities for each member of the bridal party.
Elizabeth in Martinez, California wrote in:
What is the deadline for RSVP’s?
The rule of thumb is typically 3 weeks which gives you enough time to follow up with those last-minute guests that are dilly dallying around. However, I always suggest that my brides request theirs be returned 4 weeks in advance. Since the final head count is typically due 2 weeks prior to the wedding, you can use those extra weeks to have your planner follow up with guests who still haven’t dropped their RSVP’s in the mail.
Xoxoxoxoxo Happy Planning,
I’ve just been DYING to share this wedding stationary suite with you guys ever since I received it in the mail…and now that I’ve gotten the professional images, I finally can! Thanks so much Maegan Hall for capturing all the beauty of this ensemble. Night after night I sat down with my BFF (Yakira Maynard, Top Luxury Realtor at Palmerhouse Properties) and looked for ways to create the perfect invitation suite for her wedding. We looked at different fabrics, fonts, foils, and boxes.
Who would have thought THIS would be the result of countless late night conversations over Lemon Drops with my BFF??
This invitation suite is made up of a cumulation of her favorite design elements from various past invitations. Essentially, she decided to create a stationary suite that embodied all the things she loved about each of her favorite invites…all within 3 perfectly planned invitations for 3 carefully curated guest lists. And all for the same event! Here’s the three types of invitations she created:
- Luxurious boxed invitations (for our closest friends and family)
- A Gate Folio (for the remainder of our guest list)
- A passport Invitation for those who wanted to join the group honeymoon
Every invitation within the suite was custom designed and crafted using Black Plike “velvet touch” paper and adorned with our wedding monogram and tag line “Once in a while, right in the middle of an ordinary life, love gives us a fairytale” foiled in gold.
Inside of the box, also made of Plike, one would find three separate levels, one atop the other, that housed a 12 ply invite on the first level, an enclosure envelope with all “The Details” on the second, and the honeymoon passport on the third. Upon opening the box, guests are greeted with the stature of our families new last name… “PRISE.” On the other side is an endearing photo of the bride and groom, with golden script strategically placed to formally request the honor of the guest’s presence. The invitation is made complete by adding gold trimming along the sides. A step below inside the “The Details,” one would find enclosure cards outlining the invited guests, the schedule of events, the requested attire, travel accommodations and child care to as well as as response card…. Just to name a few. Alas, inside of the passport were 4 pages detailing the impending rendezvous with the Mexican sun, and an invitation to partake in all of the “Adult – Only” fun…
Inside the folio, one would find the exact same extensions of love just on a tad of an understated scale: the photo invitation mounted to the center of the folio, atop gold trim, with custom scalloped pockets on each side housing all “The Details” and the passport.
And last but not least, The “Passport To Paradise” sealed with The United States Crest a’la Y&J style simply sealed inside of a calligraphy lined plike envelopes.
DISCLAIMER: I’m not the coordinator for this wedding, I’m simply sharing because I love all things gorgeous. I hope you enjoyed swooning over this gorgeous stationary suite as much as I did.
Captivating Calligraphy by L.A.
Tickled Ink Paperie
Mecca Gamble Photography