Broke-Ass Tag: ask liz

9/11

Ask Liz Wedding Time vs. Catring

Dear Liz, 

The second deposit for my venue is due next week, and when I looked at the contract and thought about what we want to happen that day, I’m starting to freak out. Our wedding is next month, we’re getting married at 5pm, and the music has to be off by 10pm, so we can be totally out by 11pm. With the ceremony, cocktail hour and buffet dinner,  that’s not a lot of time to party, and everything’s going to be so rushed, right? I talked to the caterer and he said it’s going to take at least an hour, at least, for everyone to get served, at least, so that sucks up all the dancing time, and I’m worried that we won’t be able to relax because we’ll be too busy trying to end on time. I’m fixated on the buffet. A whole hour? Is there a way to make that shorter, or somehow make the day…longer? Help!

Signed, 

Eating Up My Time

Dear Eating,

Trust me, the day is going to be long enough! But, yeah, one of the challenges of having a buffet is that it does take a while if you want to do it in an orderly manner — calling tables, giving each table enough time to go through before you call the next one. If your caterer is saying it’s going to take an hour, you have what, between 150-200 guests? It’s a lot of people.

Tell your caterer that you’re concerned and bounce around some ideas. Double-side the buffet so that more guests can go through at a time? Double up the number of buffet tables? What’s going to work in terms of the staff he has, or how much more is it going to cost to make it happen? Get clear on what’s possible on his end. And, have a discussion about maybe shortening up the cocktail hour. Talk to your photographer about that, too.

You can also free up time in other ways. Do the first dance right when you enter into the reception area. Ask that your meal be served at your table, so you can eat quickly and then mingle. Maybe have toasts during dinner service, depending on how everything is laid out? Open up the dance floor. Go visit all those people you’re afraid you won’t have time to hang out with, or drag them on to the dance floor that  you opened up for that purpose. Your priority is to enjoy the night with your friends and family, so enjoy it. It’s all there waiting for you. And remember, there are no rules, you just need to figure out the best way to make it work.

Oh, and more thing: If the music has to be off by 10 p.m., you should close the bar by 9:30. I know, ouch, right? Sorry about that.

Are you worried about your wedding time? Have any questions about my advice. Let me know in the comments below.

And, if you would like to find out more about me and my corner of Wedding World, come visit at www.silvercharmevents.com.

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz
Liz
  • 8/21

    just-be-nice-inspirational-art-print-etsy

    A little reminder can help. Print by Etsy seller Hairbrainedschemes

    My friend Mindy is a Disney wedding blogger, and during her Q&A on Periscope (@MindyJoyM) yesterday, a bride asked her if she should cut one of her bridesmaids. It wasn’t working out. Her bridesmaid didn’t seem to be into the wedding and all it entailed, should the bride let her go? What would the best way to do that?

    Umm. First off? There is no best way to do that. There is no clean getaway at the end of that scenario, where you tell her she’s out, she breathes a sigh of relief and gives you a big warm hug, and you walk away from the coffee shop hand in hand. No, the odds are that shock will be expressed, feelings will be deeply hurt, and that coffee shop will be the last time you see her for a while. I mean, come on.

    This is a problem I’ve noticed over the years. It’s not just wedding party problems, it’s people screaming at their parents. Anger at the limo driver or the rental company. Convinced that everyone they’re dealing with either doesn’t care, isn’t doing their job, or is taking advantage of their rapidly declining good well.

    Look, weddings come with a lot of pressure. A lot of pressure. Yes, most of it is on you, it’s your wedding. You’ve invested a lot of time, thought, and lot of money into creating your vision of a wonderful day. All the people around you want that the same thing you do, I swear. But, they don’t live in your head, so they don’t always know exactly what you’re looking for or what you need. Plus, everyone — including you — is trying to pull this thing off while they’re also managing the rest of their lives. Nine times out of 10, whatever they’ve done that’s pissed you off was not deliberately done to you. They might not even realize it’s affecting you at all. Most of the time, you can take a deep breath and give them the benefit of the doubt that they are not doing it on purpose. As you would want anyone to do for you.

    You would want them to talk with you before making any snap decisions or judgements. You would want them to ask you what’s going on, listen to you explain, and to figure out what the next step is. And, yes, this all sounds so very rational, but it’s also the truth. Look back on any conflict you’ve had with a family member, a friend, heck, your fiance, where you’ve felt that a finger was being pointed at you. Wouldn’t you have appreciated the opportunity to explain instead of an ultimatum and the door? I know I would have.

    Your feelings (and you do have them) are valid. With specific situations, I usually recommend letting it go instead of getting into it. But, sometimes you are just GAHHHHHHH!!!! You have to say something, but be nice, be nice, be nice. Not only will you feel better about the situation, you’ll feel better about yourself. Plus, the story and the memory of how you were not nice will follow you around forever, both inside your head and in everyone else’s. Wedding planning lasts a short while, the rest of your life is much longer.

    So, bring it up, but say it nicely. Thank them for making the commitment in the first place — don’t treat them like you’re doing them a favor — and then be specific about the stuff that’s bugging you. “You didn’t get your dress/come to my bridal shower/reply in the group emails I’ve been sending for weeks, is everything okay?” And then listen to what they say, and ask if there is anything you can do to help, including setting specific deadlines. It could be that it is all overwhelming, or that she does need to back out, but it’s better that she comes to that conclusion rather than that you do. Have the discussion before you make the decision, please.

    This tactic works with anyone you’re having a conflict with wedding-wise. A vendor, your family, the doorman who doesn’t know where the venue manager put your favors. Tell them what’s going wrong, ask them what’s going on, and figure out how to fix it. Nicely.

    What’s the latest issue you’re dealing with where someone is going to need a talking to? Has someone wedding-wise been not so nice to you? Let me know in the comments below.

    And if you would like to find out more about me and my corner of Wedding World, go to www.silvercharmevents.com. Ooh, and follow me on Periscope,too @SilverCharmLiz.

    See you at the end of the aisle,

    Liz
    Liz
  • 8/14

    Photo: Clane Gessel Photography Dear Liz, I've gone from being a Broke Ass Bride last year to  a Broke Ass bridesmaid this year, and I'm having a hard time with the transition. I've never been in a wedding before,so I have nothing to compare it to really, except for my own wedding.  I had to beg, borrow and steal to pull off my wedding, and we…

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    11/14

    Credit: Beyond the Ordinary The bottom line is the bottom line: Weddings cost a lot of money. The average cost of a wedding in the U.S. is $27,000, although I read one article that said that $16,000 is probably closer. You know, as if that wasn't a bunch of cash, either. I know what some of you are thinking -- you don't have to spend that much…

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    11/7

    In light of all the guest list talk around BAB this week, Liz's post about RSVP conversations that should and really, let's face it, NEED, to happen is very appropriate. Yes, this one deals with kids, much like Mellzah's post, but it's kind of a good jumping off point for all those other tough conversations -- whether it be a kid, a fairly new significant…

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    10/24

    Dear Liz, How to do your own food (with a bit of help from willing friends/family) for your reception??? Food item suggestions and logistical tips especially! Signed, Self-Serving Dear Self-Serving, Funny thing is, I  talked to someone this morning who catered his own wedding, and he did not have fun with that.  Logistically, it's a nightmare. You have to buy the food (for 100 people),…

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    1/31

    Banner available from Etsy seller BannerBash Dear Liz, My fiancé and I have been together for eight years and have a 3-year-old daughter. He proposed to me one year ago and we are wanting a Las Vegas wedding.  He has been married before, so he is wanting me to plan everything. I am torn between wanting a simple elopement and having a small nice wedding. Either…

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    1/24

    Photo: We Are The Parsons Hey Liz,  I'm getting married in April and my parents have had a rocky, nasty relationship for the past few years, which has led to their not-so-wonderful relationship with me. They are once again together, against the advice of most of our loved ones. Now, my mother wants my father and her to walk me down the aisle together. She sprung this on…

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    1/17

    Planning Binder available from Etsy seller WeddingToolzStore Dear Liz,  I have a burning question! My  fiancé and I have been engaged for over a year. We are so ready to get married but we just don't have the financial means right now. So a friend of mine who is ordained said that she would marry us. This is a great option for us due to…

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