Tuesday 24th May 2016

I am writing to you now on Day 2 of ‘getting shiz done’ on the wedding front. I have just squandered the most delish breakfast after the most fantastic sleep in the Hotel Sensimar Hotel in Lagos. I love this place so much it makes me feel so relaxed and calm and a must stay if you are planning on visiting Portugal anytime soon.

Today is the day of signing our papers. We have to get our trek on and head off to the Civil Registry to apply for our licence. This is a whole lot easier said than done as they do not speak a word of English and we wandered around for nearly an hour to track it down last year to only realise we were stood right in front of it.

We have the papers and the process has been started. The papers, the process, the process the papers. We have had a few meetings with the church over in England and have our Certificate of Freedom which means we can officially get wed in Portugal. Fingers crossed we have everything we need.

The lovely Diago at the check in desk at the hotel is an absolute dream. No only is he the most helpful guy in the land but he speaks Portuguese, obviously Carli, obviously. I thought it would be best to take as much information of what we have done over in England and to let them know we have a date booked in at the church here in Lagos, so I fluttered my eyelashes to ask if he could translate the story so far.

When people ask if it has been stressful organising a wedding abroad I can tell you it has been the most easy going thing I could have imagined. We hate to put pressure on people and as the ceremony is 1500 miles away in Portugal we hate to think we have put any pressure on any of our guests. We have kept the party really really small with close family and friends who we let know last year about our plans so it wasn’t a huge surprise this year to slap on anybody. My Nana did tell me run away to Gretna Green, just the two of us and tie the knot. All we have ever wanted was for my Nana and Dan’s Grandad to be at our wedding as they mean the absolute world to us. As life sometimes can be a total rotter we had some sad news in February as Grant Whisker passed on to a more peaceful place. It really hit home to have this wedding for ourselves as that is all that he would have wanted for us and my Nana still sticks by this to this very day.

That was too emosh to write let me tell you. We love our oldie grandparents so much and really value what they tell us and their opinions and we take on board what they have learnt from life experiences.

So here we are, all ready to head into the town and attempt to get these papers done. We have our passports, birth certificates and whatever else we could possibly need. We are then heading out to Barbosa for lunch so lets see where this lands us! I really hope Dan likes it as much as I do. 

I wanted to write these posts to document my planning and hope that this could help someone plan a wedding abroad independently like we have. I have been unable to find anything online about getting married in this town regarding church, paperwork or anything at all to be honest. I mean we could have gone about this the more normal way and hired a wedding planner but I prefer to do this our way. Fingers crossed we pull this off.

And I am back.

Swings and roundabouts. Are you ready?

We arrived at the Civil Registry which is basically just a little room that resembles a small library with absolutely no sense of urgency or to even really deal with any customers at all. I was sat with the most impatient man in the world, so this was not an ideal situation from the get go. We just sat twiddling our thumbs for a good hour before we were called to the desk to get this paperwork rolling.

Would you blooming believe what we were told next? The process had just recently changed. What an absolute set back. We were told that we needed some part of our paperwork to be stamped by the UK government and to then to go back again to start the process. This does mean we will need to pop back over the water again in September, but, come on, this isn’t the worst place to have to visit again in the summer now is it?  I am ok with this as we can finalise some other aspects of the wedding and start getting super excited. 

As Dan didn’t get chance to see the venue I had in mind yesterday we decided to go for lunch back at Barbosa to try out some yummy food and we were not disappointed. The space is so much bigger than I originally thought and that gets me super excited. Don’t you worry I will have a post coming up very soon about this wonderful place.

Heading out after a tummy full of tapas, sundried tomatoes, parma ham, grapes and brie it was time to pop by the local florist and get some contact details for there. I sort of know what I want. Nothing too fancy and bright. I think a couple of bunches of hydrangeas dotted around the church would be just fine and then to have a few bunches in jars in the venue too.

I had a little scout out for a beauticians today too. Not that I am super girly or anything but a nice set of manicured hands wouldn’t go a miss now would they?

Wednesday 25th May 2016

I felt like I really wanted to document this trip as I am so into travel blogging right now I feel a new lease of life. Off I went into the town of Lagos and with my new snappy snap camera to get one last thing sorted. There is this cute little restaurant in the plaza when you leave the church that has the freshest food and most authentic drinks the town has to offer. The guys here have been ever so helpful in our quest to get married in a foreign country so we wanted to incorporate them into our big day somehow. This my friends was the place where I indeed pinged off one of my brace brackets while chowing down on the most delish bowl of prawns. We want some refreshments for our guests when we leave the church, a simple cocktail, fizz and a water to keep our nearest and dearest hydrated. A nibble or two of finger food to help soak in the beauty of this special place and that I guess means we are nearly done.

My contact book is brimming full now. Stay posted for some more Lagos posts so I can keep you updated with this wedding planning malarkey, the venue and my favourite places to visit.

Hope you are enjoying this wedding series.

Love Carli x


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