Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Take My Advice: Kick Wedding Planner to the Curb

My wedding planner was organized, detail oriented and determined to squeeze every last dollar from the ceremony. She also happened to be my wife, Kim.

Kim didn’t have a whole lot of help either, particularly from me. I was living in another city at the time. Even if I hadn’t been, I wouldn’t have been much help. After all, I’m the kind of guy who thinks a daffodil is a type of pickle.

Under these circumstances, I really admire what Kim was able to accomplish. While working full time, she was able to plan a simple, but beautiful ceremony. At the reception, the food was hot and the beer was cold. The floor was filled with people dancing the electric slide.
Most importantly, it didn’t cost as much as a house – or even a sports car.

Today, more than 15 years after I was married, planning your own wedding is becoming a real rarity. Most people turn to outside consultants to plan and execute their “big day.” It’s a great convenience, but it also comes with a price tag.

I question the wisdom of this approach. After all, money is one of the main stressors in a relationship. Isn’t it more important to start your relationship on solid footing than to throw a good party … even if it means doing the Macarena in a union hall?

Following is my advice to those with impending nuptials.
  • Call in favors from friends and family: the cousin who is a photographer or the uncle who has a timeshare at Gulf Shores.
  • If you find yourself shopping for a gown in a place that has its own reality show, then turn around and run for the exits.
  • Keep the ceremony short and sweet. Your wedding is not as entertaining as a Hollywood blockbuster and shouldn’t last as long.
  • Go with the finger-foods instead of the sit-down dinner. No one is expecting your reception to be featured on The Food Network.
  • Cut the big-man table a break and start service before you arrive.
  • I can’t stress this enough: no beer can pyramids in mixed company.
  • Be realistic when it comes to your honeymoon. Pictures of the two of you on a private island are nice, but you can’t live in them.

On last thing, in this economy, it might be time to kick the wedding planner to the curb. Trust me, it can be done. I’ve done it … or at least my wife did.

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