In 2004, my then bf, now hubby and I decided to tie the knot. We didn’t know anything about preparing for a wedding at all that we turned to the Internet and chanced upon Weddings At Work. Little did we know that this Filipino wedding online community would become a huge part of our married life.
Weddings At Work was founded by Abet and Benz Rana who in their wedding preparation found that there was a lack of online support for couples preparing for their weddings.
Joining the group meant sharing and exchanging wedding ideas, sharing supplier information and feedback, and most importantly, getting that virtual support on issues that only fellow brides/grooms can understand.
With w@w, I tapped into my creative side and found ways to do things that we as a couple could do to stay within our budget, like do our own invitations and souvenirs. Those wouldn’t have come into play had we not know that other couples were doing it too. A wedding need not be exorbitant but with the terrific ideas from the w@w community, you can find ways to make your wedding memorable without depleting your bank account.
After graduating from w@w, we moved to the newlyweds group (n@w) where we together with other couples, are able to share about our lives as newlyweds. Nowadays, my inbox is full of emails on parenting, saving, food, yaya woes, and even showbiz gossip. 😛
But truly, it is my heart that is full. I am grateful for w@w and n@w for a lot of things especially since we’re far from our family back in the Philippines. N@w has become our support group, our family. And like what a fellow n@wie has said, N@w has indeed helped me a whole lot to become a better person, a better wife, and a better parent.
I feel envious of my fellow n@wies in the Philippines because they get together a whole lot through their Tuesdates, playgroup, and Christmas parties. Even the Singapore n@wies get together every now and then. 😛
Why do I love being a n@wie so much?
- Online family. We’re living abroad and knowing that there is a group of people who you can talk to and ask advise from is such a comfort.
- Opportunity to help. When Yolanda struck the Philippines, the n@wie group came together to share resources and find ways to help the victims. Such a blessing!
- Online 8 ball except that you get real answers. Don’t know anyone in a city? Ask n@w and you’d find someone who lives in that city or knows someone who can help you in that city. Planning a trip and need help with the itinerary? Ask n@w. Want to buy a toy kitchen? Get other n@wies to buy with you so you can lower the price. How do you fire a helper? Ask n@w. Don’t know what to cook for dinner? Ask n@w and you’d get a recipe with photos too. 😛
- Inspiration. Reading the stories of fellow n@wies from TTC couples to strategies in disciplining kids to finally getting a child potty-trained — such stories help me as a person, as a parent to persevere. We are all in the same boat!
- Choosing to breastfeed and use cloth diaper. You can say that this is part of N@w inspiring me but I just want to highlight it. Honestly, if it weren’t for n@w, I would have given up early on breastfeeding. It is hard. But the advise I’ve received from the n@wies have made breastfeeding so much more bearable. 😛
W@w/N@w actually inspired me to put up Hello Saigon. The best way for me to understand a country is through writing about what I see and experience. And in the process this became a resource for other families moving to Saigon — much like me when I decided to move from being single to tying the knot. Without Weddings At Work, I’m pretty sure we would have gone over our budget or booked an undependable supplier.
Thanks Abet and Benz for the wonderful community you’ve created! Happy 15th year!