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Wedding Tips for Saving Your Sanity and Your Bank Account
Overwhelmed is a common feeling a bride-to-be experiences as she begins to delve into the $45 billion a year world of planning a wedding. However there are several ways to deal with the incessant head spinning that can ensue as you begin to contemplate who to invite, what to feed everyone, where to have it, and how in the world you can stay within your budget without requiring a stylish white straight jacket to wear with your Badgley Mischka gown.
After you have gotten use to the idea of being engaged and you have begun to refer to your newly engaged beau as your fiancé, you may find yourself starting to imagine or daydream about what the big day might be like, thus beginning the dreaded planning process. Planning is really an inaccurate description of what this process is all about. Juggling expectations, both yours, your finance's, as well as your family's and friend's is a more accurate description of what the next 6 to 12 months of your life will entail.
The best way to maintain a loose sense of control during this maddening process is reducing the amount of input that every parent, sister, childhood friend, and co-worker has on what you and your groom HAVE to do. Of course this process is considerably easier when the commentary is not accompanied by much needed checks with their signatures. In a perfect world you and your partner would determine what best suits you and your budget, and then select the best florist and DJ based on your common love of tulips and salsa dance! However, when your mother-in-law-to-be gushes about how lovely her so-and-so's wedding was and she is significantly contributing to your wedding fund, it becomes difficult to reasonably suggest that what worked for her niece doesn't suit you. I already have a call into Martha Stewart's people to suggest that she consider developing extremely stylish earplugs designed to reduce the number of helpful suggestions that actually reach your ears! However, until such a gem exists, a "Really, I am sure that looked lovely" response can do the trick as you quickly back pedal and change the subject. And as hard as it can be to disappoint the masses, maintaining your sanity requires you and your partner to frequently touch base, determine what you want, and decide what you are prepared to deal with from your loved ones. In the grand scheme of things, your family and friends think that they are being helpful offering suggestions; they are not trying to make this process harder on you.
After you have dodged and weaved your way around the mountains of suggestions, you might have time to think about what you actually want. Perhaps you have already planned out every last detail of your wedding, as a matter of fact those details were set in stone at age 14, however there's another group of ladies out there who don't have a clue! Regardless which group you fall into, research is key! In response to the booming multi-billion dollar business, several savvy groups have created Web sites that are extremely helpful for the wedding challenged. Quite frankly, I do not know how on earth anyone planned a wedding pre-Internet! Some sites, including theknot.com and theweddingchannel.com, offer users helpful budget tools, ridiculously detailed to-do lists (which allow the less formal brides to junk half of the to-dos), guest lists, and registry tools. These tools are free and highly recommended! Now don't get me wrong, they are by no means miracle workers, in that you still have tough decisions to make, including choosing only five appetizers versus eight so you can add a few extra days to your honeymoon, but these sites at least give you a good starting point.
Which brings me to the concept of trade-offs and what an important role they can play so you don't completely blow your budget. For some lucky brides, the sky is the limit. I have a good friend whose sister is getting married this summer and we were recently discussing wedding plans. I literally choked when she said that her sister had 700 guests on her invite list, none of which would be slid to the B list. This was not including her fiancé's family or friends. I was shocked! Why in the world would anyone do that to themselves? I learned that most weddings in South Carolina are extravagant and it is not odd to plunk down six figures in an effort to make the day special. So if brides in South Carolina are far exceeding the average that means some lucky ladies are doing it for much less!
Another pal of mine is working with a $10,000 budget and is easily making trade-offs, which will go unnoticed by her guests. Instead of using a fancy-schmancy cake designer, she is using a local grocery store to create her wedding cake for a fraction of the price! You can also save a lot of money with flowers. Being selective about where you use flowers is key. For example, I have been to more weddings than I can count, and I couldn't tell you what type of flowers were used to decorate the end of each pew. Use flowers sparingly and in obvious places where they will be missed like bouquets and center pieces and make every attempt to use flowers that are local and seasonal, which should cut down on your floral costs.
Although you have to feed your guests something, trade-offs can be made with regard to the type of food and the time of your reception. Avoiding the dinner hour can save you big bucks! If you have wiggle room with the time of day you want to get married, a reception can be more affordable by foregoing a sit down meal and opting instead for a cocktail reception with hor d'oeuvres, a late reception with champagne and dessert, or a brunch-style reception. Another huge dough saver is your approach to the open bar. I truly believe that every reception should have an open bar of some sort, however if you are looking to pinch a few pennies, sticking to beer and wine is another good way to save. If you are one of the lucky brides who doesn't need to worry about having the wedding of her dreams or maintaining some semblance of a budget, you may need trade-offs for different reason, be it satisfying your parents, compromising with your soon-to-be husband, or meeting an older siblings expectations.
Remember, that whatever you determine is a trade-off to meet you budget or a family member's or friend's belief of what your big day should be, make sure you don't trade your sanity in trying to find all of the money saving loop holes. At the end of the day, you and your partner want to have a day that expresses your personal styles and leaves your guest with fond memories. Happy planning!
Thoughts from Deik and Kims Wedding, for You and Your Marriage
Deik and Kim, remember that marriage is a COVENANT relationship. It is not merely a contract of convenience, nor a promise to live together as long as each still feels good about the other. It is a COVENANT to love and care for each other until parted by death, or until the coming of our Lord.
Cookie Wedding Favors
Cookies as wedding favors, create an unique twist on the time honored tradition of providing small gifts to guests, as a token of appreciation from the bride and groom. Initially wedding favors were only a part of celebrations European upper classes who would provide elaborate gifts to their guests. Wedding favors began as small fancy boxes, filled with the royal treat of confectionery delicacies, at a time when sugar was quite expensive.
Planning the Menu for Your Wedding Reception
When you are planning a budgeted menu, you must first know what your exact budget is when it comes to the food and drink specifically. Some people keep the food and drinks separate, but on average, the food and drink are a part of the same bill.
Negotiation Strategies Especially for Couples
These guidelines will help you avoid the three most common negotiating mistakes couples make: 1) Failure to prepare before the negotiation with your partner; 2) Caving in too quickly to avoid tension or to keep the peace; and 3) Stubbornly pushing too hard for your own solution.
Unique Wedding Favors
When it comes to consideration for the right wedding favor, the possibilities are endless. Couples have so many options available today, that it may appear to be a daunting task to settle on the right token of appreciation. A bride may even feel a pressure to select and give the perfect wedding favor. There is no right or wrong choice, so long as the gesture is heartfelt. Selection of the wedding favor, actually provides the bride a chance to show her personality and consider what will delight her guests.
Proper Etiquette for the Wedding Invitation
The invitation is the first impression of the type of wedding you have planned. Your invitation may be custom made, sophisticated, eloquent or a do it yourself creation. With all the styles and colors to choose from, it should not be too difficult to find the perfect invitation.
Faulty Expectations: 4 Essential Don?ts
The more realistic you are as you prepare for marriage, the more likely you are to have a successful one. Therefore, it is incumbent upon you to give serious consideration to your expectations of your fiancé. Are they realistic? Are they fair?
The Wedding Dress Revealed
Fashion Trends and Popular Styles and Colors
Planning A Backyard Wedding
So many couples are planning to have their wedding at locations that are symbolic to them. A popular place for this is their parents or relative's backyard. A popular color for a backyard wedding is hunter green to match the natural surroundings. Hunter green bridesmaid dresses are lovely for a wedding. Choosing to plan a backyard wedding and using hunter bridesmaid dresses is hard work. It is advised you start as soon as possible.
Create Unique Wedding Invitations That Only Look Expensive
Save a substantial amount of money on invitations, without sacrificing quality, by making them yourself using your computer. It's easy and fun to create distinctive invitations, at a price you can afford, by layering fine printable paper over a heavyweight card and fastening them together with a unique embellishment.
How To Fight Cultural Differences In Marriage And Stay Happy
When people plan to marry, they expect to find in their partner not only a lover but a friend also. A person with whom they can share their opinions, their emotions, thoughts and fears.
Five Ideas for a More Romantic Honeymoon
Candles, rose petals, satin, succulent foods, perfume-you're probably already familiar with all of these time-honored ingredients for creating a romantic mood on your honeymoon. But candles, rose petals, and other sensual ingredients only go so far. The real key to creating a romantic honeymoon is to spend time celebrating your relationship and your new life together as a married couple. After all, romance is more about the heart than the body.
The Wedding Guests Guide to A Stress Free and Fun Wedding
Most brides become obsessed with throwing the perfect wedding. The bride-zilla persona takes over and can cause incredible pressure and strain on all involved. What most brides fail to realize is that the majority of details they fuss over, go unnoticed by guests and are forgotten by the bride and groom during the excitement of the big day.
Wedding Photography: Preserving the Memories
A person's wedding can be one of the most important times in their life. They will have memories that they want to treasure forever and then pass on to their children. Wedding photography helps them do this. Having pictures taken at the wedding and then at the reception can capture those precious memories in freeze-frame and help you keep them forever.
How To Hire A DJ For Your Wedding
Hiring music entertainment can arguably be the most important booking made for your wedding. Guests remember whether or not they had fun at your wedding. What you pay for is what you get is a good rule of thumb. However, I would like to educate the consumer, future brides and grooms, of how to hire a DJ and things to consider. The following are 9 important factors to consider when hiring a disc jockey BEFORE you sign the contract.
Choosing Your Groomsmen: No Matter What They Say, Nobody Must Be In the Wedding Party
Your lovely fiancée has chosen her 'maids, and now you're stuck with the task of finding just the right number of family and friends to pair them with. How do you decide who makes the cut? The Usual Suspects
Fabulous Wedding Favors For Every Budget
Wedding favors are a delightful detail for any wedding shower, wedding reception, or wedding related gathering. There are thousands of things to pick from when it comes to wedding favors and the message you want to convey. They can be edible items, keepsakes or just small reminders from your big day for your guests.
Catering to Your Wedding
Wedding catering has always been one of the most crucial aspects of planning a wedding. Besides choosing the food menu items for the palette, you also need to think of other factors ? could there be potential allergies to certain types of wedding food, will the food arrive on time, and will it taste great? For all these reasons and more, it is very important that you take the time to review the details of providing great cuisine through a responsible and reliable wedding caterer. Ideally, you will find someone who has experience in catering wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners, theme weddings and bridal showers. If the caterer is a custom designer, baker or Chef, they might also help you plan your stunning wedding cake or cake tops. Here are some tips we have found that might help make planning your wedding catering easier than you might think:
Dealing With Your Spouses Sexual Past
"Couples who've had sex before marriage will inevitably have sexual difficulties in marriage."
The Bridezilla Syndrome: Do You Have It? Ten Ways to Avoid All the BS!
In a fast-paced world of wedding planning, stress levels are high; immune systems are low; and over the course of the past 20 years, brides have transmitted, what has become a bridal epidemic of our time.
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