Amber, the Almost Vegan Chef, is sharing her vegan wedding planning with us step by step. You can catch up with her last post here.

The past few weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind.  A trip to San Francisco, planning an upcoming move, and the recent release of my cookbook (plus eating, sleeping, cooking, working, blogging—you know, the usual) have kept me very busy.  So I couldn’t help but feel a momentary jolt of panic recently, when I casually glanced at a calendar on March 8th and realized Matt’s and my wedding was exactly six months away.

Dun dun DUNNN!

You see, when we finally secured our new venue in January after our first venue’s Great Disappearing Act (see here and here), Matt and I decided to relax and take it easy on wedding planning for awhile.  “Awhile,” however, turned into 2-months-just-flew-by-and-we-barely-even-noticed.

But now, it’s crunch time.  I think we’ve done more in past two weeks, wedding-planning-wise, than we have all year!  We officially chose a “theme” for our wedding.  I emailed the vegan caterer and cake baker we’d decided upon, in hopes of doing some taste-testing soon and drawing up contracts for both.  I set up a meeting with a prospective photographer.  We started a spreadsheet of songs we want played at the reception.  I’m starting to get some clear ideas in my head of what I’d like the dress, cake, and décor to look like.  We’ve talked a little about how we’d like to design the ceremony.  I did some research on the laws in Missouri governing marriage licenses, officiants, etc.  I’ve been “pinning” ideas like mad onto my wedding board.  And, most importantly, we finally sent out save-the-dates!  To save time and money, we sent them electronically.

Although much of the “work” we’ve done recently is still speculative or tentative in nature, I’m glad to feel like we’re making headway in our planning process once again.  There is a lot to do in the next six months!  Checklists are being made, wedding websites are being browsed, Etsy is being consulted, and the pedal is being put to the metal.

We have encountered one very serious bump in the road regarding the catering.  For some time now, we’ve had our eye on a local meal delivery company that makes exclusively vegan (and optionally gluten-free) food.  We just know they’d make exactly the types of dishes – at the proper level of quality – that we want at our wedding.  The catch?  They don’t technically do catering.  While they’re more than willing to make the food for our event, they’re simply not equipped to do all the other things that come along with a catering job—transport large amounts of food, staff the event, handle cleanup at the venue, etc.  Matt and I are not yet sure how to get past this snag.  Any ideas, readers?

Coming soon:  posts about determining our guest list, choosing and sending the invitations, planning out our characteristically-eclectic music selection, and (perhaps most importantly of all!) designing the perfect gluten-free vegan buffet menu and wedding cake.

Amber Shea Crawley is a linguist, chef, and author specializing in healthful vegan and raw food. Known for her flexible recipes and friendly voice, she was classically trained in the art of gourmet living cuisine at the world-renowned Matthew Kenney Academy, graduating in 2010 as a certified raw and vegan chef. In 2011, she earned her Nutrition Educator certification at the Living Light Culinary Arts Institute. Her first cookbook, Practically Raw, debuted in March 2012. Amber blogs at

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