Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Wedding Planners

My youngest daughter is getting married this Fall and, together with my oldest daughter, we're doing all the planning ourselves.  We just had a bridal shower this past weekend, and it was hosted by six close family & friends, which made planning, budgeting and execution of detail relatively stress-free.

We invited forty (both mine and the future SIL's mom have large families), and we hosted the shower at my home since our property allows for ample parking.  

Gifts abound, and this photo was snapped while guests were still arriving, so I didn't even get the entire mountain all in one photograph:
My oldest is a great organizer, and she put order to all the prizes just before guests arrived.
She also readied baskets with 'paperwork' - name tags, pens, games, recipe cards to be received, and thank you envelopes for addressing - at the ready for when guests arrived. 
The food buffet was fairly simple:  finger sandwiches, veggie & fruit trays, a pasta salad and some chips (we planned the shower for 1pm for light snacking).  We had enough food for twice as many as invited!
The dessert buffet included three choices:  sugar cookie fruit cups, petit fours, and tuxedo brownie cups, all tried-and-true winners:
A door prize was awarded to the guests who had these head shots of the Bride & Groom (which my daughter photoshopped onto circa 1970s and 1980s pictures) on the bottom of their plates.  The groom looks a little wet from rinsing the plate for the photo. ;)
Talk about a Fiesta!  Fiesta ware, that is.....my daughter registered four colors of West Virginia's own Fiesta ware for her new home, and she received lots of it!  The best part of it all was that her shower was timed, though not intentionally, simultaneous with one of the two annual Fiesta ware factory tent sales!  One niece traveled just 65 miles north of town and hand-picked a whole crate full of my daughter's colors in various pieces, and her total cost was incredibly better than even a Kohl's cash and % off promotion could offer!
Keeping with tradition, I made a bouquet of all gift ribbons (so many people now use gift bags!), and my daughter was very careful NOT to break any!  And that's fine with me!
It was a great soiree, and I'm happy my daughter has so many great family and friends in her life to celebrate this very special time with her.  I love my girls and love sharing this experience with them both.
And the very best part of the planning so far came in an email this morning. Our next item on the "to-do"  checklist was getting wedding invitations ordered.  We had been working with mocking up the invites on one of "FineStationery.com", William Arthur designs.  I had previously 'liked' Fine Stationery's Facebook page, and came across a contest that "Celebrity Style Weddings Magazine" was hosting which ended August 12th.  I woke up this morning to an email stating I had won - a $200 gift certificate to Fine Stationery for wedding invitations!  Can you say perfect timing?!  We're super excited to apply this to our order, as staying within budget is definitely a priority for our planning.  

We have other irons in the fire toward planning a rustic, semi-formal wedding in late October.  With being an antique dealer with my two sisters, I've been gathering a myriad of supplies since last year, including linens, mason jars, and other rustic accessories.  I'll keep you posted on our progress. :)  In the meantime, if anyone wants to offer any pitfalls to avoid or secrets to success in being our own wedding planners, I'm taking notes!