Broke-Ass Tag: destination wedding


Wedding planning and preparation can be stressful. It has it’s ups and downs, twists and turns. There’s drama with friends, family and vendors. Decisions upon decisions. Money. Money. More money. It can be a lot for a person or a couple to handle.

Throughout my planning process, I’ve certainly experienced some stress!  There’s been changes with my venue, my coordinator and disagreements with good friends. As I’m searching through pages of cake vendors and florists, scanning Pinterest for inspiration, there are times when I ask myself if it’s really all worth it.

Etsy Alligator Food Design Let's Elope Print

Print via Etsy seller AlligatorFoodDesign

We went into our planning with a vision: We wanted our friends and family to come and join us for a weekend away. The over-and-done nature of weddings has always frustrated me. So much goes into planning them and they are over in just a few hours. Everyone goes home and the wedding hangover begins. We found a spot where everyone could gather and spend time for more than just a few hours, more than just one day. Fast forward a few months as we are putting the details together, and we start talking to our guests about our plans. Our enthusiasm has quickly turned to reservation as some of our guests have started to express theirs. We haven’t sent out official invites yet, so we don’t have RSVPs, but it sounds like not everyone else is buying into our weekend festivities idea.

It’s been hard to think that some our loved ones may not show. I realize we chose the venue, but the whole point of all this planning is to share the day, and celebrate with others. Otherwise, we would have just eloped. It would have been a whole lot easier and a heck of a lot less stressful! I’m telling myself that it doesn’t matter if only 20 people show up, that it’s really just about us, but sometimes I really just want to call the whole thing off, fly to a little island, say “I Do” and watch the sunset.

Have you hit this point in wedding planning? How did you move past it? Any advice to share?

  • 10/26

    Affiliate Disclaimer NewLivin La Vida Broka Shirt Etsy

    Basically, the Broke-Ass uniform. Via Etsy seller TrendingTops

    I’ve talked about dealing with moms and in-laws, but I’m finding dealing with friends to be the most challenging to handle. I don’t know why; maybe it’s because it’s a less secure relationship than a family member, but it’s adding to the already stressful situation I’ve been having.

    Last week, I told you about our recent venue visit and how plans got turned upside down. Needless to say, we had to reevaluate some things and change our vision a bit. In case you haven’t been following the saga, our goal was to really spend quality time with friends and family, so instead of having an event that only lasts a few hours like a traditional wedding, we found a small “resort” where people could come stay the weekend. We are renting a house, hosting guests for a big dinner party Saturday night and having the ceremony and a brunch reception Sunday morning. We had hoped people would come up and stay for two days and maybe two nights so we could all hang out and enjoy the activities at the resort.

    When we went to visit a few weeks ago, we found out that our house for Saturday would not accommodate our projected guest count and construction plans for the space we planned on holding our ceremony fell through, and the alternative would need quite a bit of gussying up. Which brings me to our new plan: We’re renting a larger (more expensive) house on the property that also includes a tent for the reception Sunday. Because it’s bigger — costing us more — we are hoping people will stay in it and pay for their rooms to defer some of the cost. I’m only asking couples to pay $400 for the weekend, so it seemed reasonable to me. It’s less than the actual cost of the house, and it’s as much — if not less — than they would pay for their own accommodations. I sent out a note to a group of my friends explaining the situation asking if they would agree to take rooms so we could move forward with the venue and go with the house rental. I got two immediate yeses, which put me more at ease, but the next morning that changed.

    The next day I opened my email to find a note from my closest friend, and would-be MOH. She casually told me she and her husband chatted about it, and they decided to find another place to stay in the area so they were just going to come up Saturday, stay at their rental and leave Sunday afternoon. She wished me luck with the house. I was really upset! First, I was counting on my friends to buy in to this plan in order to make it work. Second, her, of all people, was not going along with the plan. I started to see our whole vision crumbling once again and Plan C falling apart. If people aren’t going to come and stay, it defeats the purpose of the whole event. I know the real purpose is a marriage, but my point is, I could do that with just the two of us, close to home, without all the fanfare and planning and cost that I’m putting in to this for our guests to enjoy. I’ve really been so guest-centric in all of my decisions, I feel like I’m being as accommodating as possible.

    Real Bride Amy serving as a bridesmaid

    One of my many bridesmaid appearances. Isn’t it my turn now?

    We talked via text and she asked to get coffee. She apologized saying she didn’t understand how important it was that she was there for the weekend. She did change her mind and is coming up Friday, but is still staying elsewhere. The reason? Money. Here’s where it gets messy: Friendships and finances don’t mix, but I hate this as a justification. Unfortunately, some things you can’t put a price on. For me, friends are not an area where budget comes in to play. I’m trying to respect her broke-assness, but I’m having a hard time. Mainly because I didn’t do a formal bridal party for this reason. I was in her wedding, went away for a bachelorette weekend, threw her a lovely shower, dress, hair, shoes … the whole nine. Plus, I did the makeup for her and the rest of the party, gratis. I easily spent over $1,000. And now I’m asking $400, a year in advance, and she can’t swing it. It’s a tough pill to swallow. It’s not just the dollars and cents, but it’s about value, like she’s saying I’m not worth it. It’s not an easy situation to be in to ask friends and family to spend money on you in the first place, but to have them say no when you do ask is worse.

    So ladies, what do you do when your friends play the broke card?

  • 10/12

    Well, BABs, I guess I've officially entered the drama phase of wedding planning! This past weekend marked the one-year countdown to our wedding! We just so happened to have a venue visit scheduled to really start planning. When we originally visited our venue and booked our wedding it was the middle of winter so the property was covered in snow and some sites were not available…

    Read the full article →
    Share this!


    Maggie Sottero Phyllis

    Dearest BAB readers, you never cease to amaze me. Your taste in gowns is outstanding, and your requests are so humble, kind and grateful. Truly, it's my pleasure to help in whatever small way I can. This, week, though, reader Stefanie's request (in a comment to this post) hit like a punch to the gut -- because her generosity is precisely part of what makes her…

    Read the full article →
    Share this!


    Photo:Andie Freeman Photography I'm pretty organized. Okay, very organized, obsessive compulsive even.  I still use a paper calendar and color code events. I'm the one to coordinate events among friends, and plan trips with my fiance, so I thought I would have no problem planning a wedding. I'm realizing it's about more than organization, though. I can coordinate vendors and make payments, no problem, but…

    Read the full article →
  • 7/20

    Amy trying on V-neck styles

    I've been dreading dress shopping for months, but after much prodding from friends, I caved, suited up in some Spanx and headed to David's Bridal. I know David's is a great budget friendly option, but based on some previous experience with their dress quality and hearing lots of customer service horror stories, it wouldn't be the first place I would want to buy a dress.…

    Read the full article →


    Amelie 1

    We've got a special two-parter for you this week, BABs! Check back tomorrow for Part 2! BAB reader Kary has a dilemma. She's fallen in love with *two* gowns (and a wonderful man), with a budget of about $2,000. She says: I am planning a small beach wedding for June, 2016, in Sand Key, Fla., and a large, outdoor reception at home, after our return.…

    Read the full article →


    Finding a photographer has been a challenge. Pictures are probably the number one priority for me for the wedding, so it's something I really want to get right. It's the one thing I'm not willing to skimp on, however I don't really want to spend a million dollars either. I thought by doing a Sunday morning affair, I could save on photography costs a bit, especially…

    Read the full article →
  • 5/25

    For Mother's Day, my mom and I went away for the weekend.  We had nice time, and chatted here and there about the wedding. While we don't argue, I will say we are totally not on the same page. We aren't super close, my mother and I. We aren't estranged, but we also aren't Rori and Loreli either! The wedding is just an example of how…

    Read the full article →