It finally happened. He got down on one knee and popped the question. You’ve got something sparkly on your finger that you cannot stop staring at. You’re going to be a bride! Now what?

There’s a lot that goes into wedding planning, more that we anticipate when we begin. The biggest question we hear from newly engaged ladies is – where do I start? What do I do first?

Here’s our list of the 10 things to do when you become engaged.

1. Get a manicure & keep that ring sparkly.  If you can, keep those nails beautiful!  Everyone
is going to be ooohing and aaahing over your ring, so a fabulous manicure won’t hurt. Invest in a ring stand and cleaner – a nightly spa bath for your ring will magnify those sparkles and keep the diamond looking brilliant.

2. Discuss the basics with your fiance and your family. Where do you plan to get married? When? What is the budget? Who is paying for it?

3. Prepare answers to the following questions. You will get asked over and over and over again.

  • How did he propose?
  • Tell me about the ring! If you need some help with the lingo, head over to RingSpotters.com for help. And submit your ring too if you’re in the mood to show it off!
  • When and where is the wedding? If you don’t have a date yet (and most brides don’t this early on), simply say that your wedding will be “sometime in next year” or “in the fall of 2013 – we are still deciding on a location and venue.”

4. Find some visual inspiration.  This is the fun part.  Start by getting a feel for what kind of wedding you want to have. Browse through blogs, photos and compile images that speak to you (check out Pinterest if you haven’t already).  Read Idojour’s review of the best wedding websites to help you get started. Prefer paper and binder?  Bring home those wedding mags and start tearing out photos!

5. Decide how you want to stay organized.  Find a wedding checklist and have it handy. We love Wedding Wire and their suite of free planning tools. It’s sophisticated, comprehensive and easy to use.

6. Visit a bridal Fair. Grab your mom, BFF, or your fiance and check out some bridal fairs. For one, it will get you EXCITED about your wedding. Also, you will realize first hand how many options you have when you plan your wedding.  You’ll get lots of free stuff…you may even win a honeymoon!

7. Go try on expensive wedding dresses. No pressure, just a fun afternoon out with a girlfriends. Go on – try on the $20,000 Vera Wang ballgown and see what a real princess feels like!

8. Start watching the bridal shows on TLC like Say Yes to the Dress. This is a great way to start familiarizing yourself with gowns and dress terms that might be new to you. For a good laugh, you can always watch Bridezillas on the WE channel!

9. Enjoy the quiet time with your fabulous fiance.  Relish the high of your new engagement. You are about to embark on the ride of your life – wedding planning.  Savor this calm.

10.  Try not to get overwhelmed.  Being engaged one of the most unique stages of your life.  You are planning and anticipating one of the most memorable days of your life – your wedding.  Enjoy it.  It can be fun with the right attitude.

If you’re looking for a snapshot of what this wedding planning thing looks like, read the 2 minute wedding planning guide. And if you’re ready to dive into the more serious side of wedding planning, read Wedding Planning Rules: The 4 Mistakes You Need to Avoid.