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Wedding Problems

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
Ok, this is probably going to be pretty long, so if you don't feel like reading it please skip on, I won't mind [:P]

My fiance and I have been engaged since Valentine's Day (aw, isn't that sweet, lol). I got my dress a couple weeks later (not my idea, future-mil got it for me). We planned on a June, 2008 wedding. Sounds good, right?

Well, see, Dave (fiance) wants to be a youth counselor at our church. Oh, by the way, we live together. The problem is that Dave can't counsel youth while we're "living in sin." He's also really anxious to get married, although he's not particularly interested in the wedding and inviting everyone part of it.

The original June 2008 plan went something like this: Have wedding ceremony and reception at a beautiful local park, on a Saturday morning. Have brunch afterwards, maybe some music playing, dancing, stuff like that. End early afternoon and be done with it.

Now Dave wants to get married ASAP. Not by the justice of the peace, but by the pastor, because he wants to get married before God, which is understandable. The problem is that we have absolutely no money to have any sort of wedding. We both just started new jobs a few weeks ago. We have no savings, and none of our parents are going to help with expenses.

We are lucky that we don't have to pay for this stuff:
Dress (already have it)
Cake (my step-mom's a pastry chef)
DJ (fiance's aunt and uncle are professional DJs)
Some of the food (my grandma will provide the majority, I just have to make up the excess)

However, that means we still have a lot to pay for.

Now, Dave's idea was to have a very small ceremony, just parents/grandparents invited, at the church in December. I wouldn't wear my dress, and he wouldn't wear a tux. We'd all go out to eat somewhere afterwards and everyone pays for themselves. My problem with this, as my grandma pointed out, is that if we do that, what's the point of having a June 08 "renewal of our vows"? I'd just have to get dressed up, walk down the aisle again, and have to pay for everyone to eat and stuff. I'd also most likely just decide not to do it at all, and then have wasted my future MIL's money on my dress.

We've thought about just doing the whole darn wedding in December, and getting it done and over with. The problem is that we can't possibly afford it, we don't even have our rings yet! The minimum number of guests will be around 85 or so, and that's just family and only the friends we need to be in the wedding party (which, by the way, is just me plus two girls, and Dave plus two guys). I've tried talking to Dave about only inviting parents/siblings/grandparents/best friends, but that's just the way it's done in his family.

I know this probably doesn't make any sense at all, and believe me, it doesn't make any sense in my head either. I just want to have a nice, simple wedding. No catering, my grandma will provide the food. We already have music lined up, as well as a cake and my dress. The problem is that we can't afford to feed 85 people in December. By June we could, because we will have been saving for a while then. It still won't be glamorous, but I'm not that kind of girl.

Please help if you can, I know ya'll have some great ideas. I just need to figure out the best course to get this done. My grandfather's very sick with cancer right now, and I want him to see my walk down the aisle before he passes away, I just don't know how. Please give me some ideas about how this can possibly work!

Thanks so much if you read this everyone, I really appreciate it!
post #2 of 25
All this to become a youth counselor at his church? Seems like a big step/jump just to no longer live in sin (IMO) for a job.

Why can he not wait a year to become a counselor?

I think in short you both need to sit down and take into reality of things. Getting married is great, sure, but do you want one that's thrown together at the last minute or one that is something that you saved up for?
post #3 of 25
Thread Starter 
Lol, I forgot to add the other reason he wants to get married so soon. We both lost our jobs within a couple of weeks of eachother. His Mom convinced him for a while there that the reason we lost our jobs at the same time was because "God was out to punish us."

Now, we've talked it over and he realizes that God does not punish, but he still doesn't want to test God by living in sin any longer than he has too

His mom is crazy, by the way, and she still tries to talk to us like we're stupid all the time. I realize we're very young (we're both 21), but it's high time she quit assuming that we don't know anything. We definitely don't know everything, but we're learning!!

Good question though, I did forget to add that part....
post #4 of 25
my advice would be to tell Dave "If you want to get married now, your guest list has to be very very short, only immediate family and closest friends" if HE'S the one pushing to get married ASAP, he needs to make a sacrifice in that department. After you've saved for a while, ya'll can gave a big bar-b-que next summer to celebrate with the general public but i do think that you should do the church and flowers and cake in December, no sense having to go thru that twice
post #5 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrouchingCheese View Post
Now, we've talked it over and he realizes that God does not punish, but he still doesn't want to test God by living in sin any longer than he has too
If living in sin is the issue then why don't you just live separately until you get married?
post #6 of 25
Thread Starter 
We can't afford to live apart, each of us helps pay the bills. He can't move back in with his parents as it's too far from work, it's the same problem with me.

Tell me if this idea sounds cheesy (thanks katiemae for the idea!!):

In December have a small ceremony with just immediate family (parents, grandparents, and siblings) and the wedding party people (that total would be about 40). Have the dress, cake, some food, etc. Have the reception in the basement of the church (it wouldn't cost any more, and my grandma would prefer that).

Then, next June, have a BBQ party with no ceremony, dress, tuxes, etc. with everyone at a local park. Invite all of the aunts/uncles/cousins and other friends. Have the DJ, dancing, all that stuff, just no dressing up too much and no ceremony.

Would that be cheesy?
post #7 of 25
I think that would be the best option, solves both problems! I'm pretty sure most folks will understand it's kinda like someone having a destination wedding and then coming back and having a reception.... well, its sorta similar
post #8 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by katiemae1277 View Post
I think that would be the best option, solves both problems! I'm pretty sure most folks will understand it's kinda like someone having a destination wedding and then coming back and having a reception.... well, its sorta similar
Well, the church is kind of out in the middle of nowhere, so it'll be quite a destination!
post #9 of 25
I was just married 4 months ago on the beach here in Florida. We called it a "family reunion with a wedding in the middle of it" lol. We didn't make a big ceremonial to do about it. I wore a wedding dress but Mark just worke dress pants and a nice shirt. The reception dinner was at a local restaurant and the party continued on the beach afterwards. It was perfect and not to expensive.
The idea of having just immediate family and close friends sounds just perfect for you. It will mean alot to you both to have the closest people there for your wedding but will not cost you a fortune either.
My sister had a December christmas wedding and she did not have to decorate much because the place was all decked out for Christmas. It was really beautiful! Let the trees and wreaths in the church be your decor.
You could have your grandma and other family members make the food, save money on decorations, you already have the dress and the location. You could really get away with not spending much money at all and having a really intimate ceremony
post #10 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrouchingCheese View Post
I just want to have a nice, simple wedding. No catering, my grandma will provide the food. We already have music lined up, as well as a cake and my dress. The problem is that we can't afford to feed 85 people in December.!
I think the answer is there. I did went over all your story (why skipping on it? ) and I thought at first place you're having the same issues I had yesterday but it seems like it's a money-issue.

Well, if you want something simple why don't you so simple all the way? you don't have to make something big, you can buy 85 ice-creams/chocolates and make it like 10-15 minutes wedding, right?

I mean if you only want to... after all a wedding is a big event but some people want it simple, so maybe this tip might help
post #11 of 25
Why do you need to have a big wedding?

Why not just book the church for next month, call your immediate/close family and close friends and tell them the date, book a few tables at a restaurant (everyone pays their own), or even the church basement and have a potluck after the ceremony.

A wedding is about the committment 2 people make to each other. I have never understood spending thousands of dollars and a year planning for it.
post #12 of 25
If you get married in Dec and money is tight- why not invite all of your friends/family to the wedding ceramony and then invite only immediate family and very very close friends to the reception- the reception is the most expensive part of the wedding, so by allowing everyone to go to the reception- they won't get their feelings hurt, and by only inviting close family/friends to the reception- you will save money and still have a great time.

I'm getting married in March- so i definitely understand how stressfull all the planning/etc can be! The main thing to try and remember is that your wedding is just one day, and your marriage will hopefully be for the rest of your life. Do not go into debt for one day- it's better to make wise decisions about money/your wedding now so that you don't start off your marriage going into debt for one day. You'll be ok, but start planning now and really discipline yourself to make wise financial decisions.

Also a few other ideas for your reception- the more early in the day your wedding, the less you are obligated to give everyone a full meal (if your wedding is close to dinner,they may expect it.) So in the invites you send to your friends/family that you want at the reception- include a small card about the reception and write something like "please join us after the ceramony promptly at 2:00pm in the lounge for a cake and appetizer reception" (or something like that- word if your way- but that way- the guests only expect small finger foods/etc - not a full course meal- it will save money and require less for your grandmother to cook) / Also -for your wedding cake, a good way to save money- get only a small 2-3 tier cake for "show" or a 5 tier cake with two cardboard layers covered in icing to blend. Then have a few sheet cakes in the back pre-sliced and ready to serve- the guests won't care that they don't get a piece of the actual wedding cake-so long as you offer them some cake. It's a lot cheaper to do that than to serve everyone really expensive wedding cake.
post #13 of 25
That's what my friend did, but slightly different. She had a small intimate wedding in Jamaica, but then had a BBQ a few months later for those that couldn't make it. The ceremony only happened once, they had a slidershow of the pictures of Jamaica and everything was all low key.

Just remember to have the wedding that BOTH of you want. If you need the big wedding, wait until next year. If you and your fiance don't mind the alternative that you suggested then go with that.
post #14 of 25
Thread Starter 
Wow, you guys have fantastic ideas!

I would much prefer a small ceremony to a large one, lol. I guess I just don't want half of the world looking at me for more than 30 seconds

I talked to Dave about it today at lunch, and he said "If that's what you want, then that's fine."

I'm going to have to call my family within the next few days, and I have to talk to the pastor and see how she feels about it.

Maybe we can figure out some way to have a slideshow of the wedding pictures at the June party thing, that would be pretty cool!

Thanks again everyone. I feel a heck of a lot better, and am actually looking forward to planning this now, lol!!
post #15 of 25
Ok some flags here:

1. If you've been engaged since Feb 2007, and were planning a wedding in June 2008 - have you been saving for this wedding so far? Even if you have new jobs, you still should have something in a savings account.

2. Weddings don't have to be BIG. You have as many people as you can afford. If this means you only have 12 people there - immediate family and 2 witnesses (you only need a witness for you and him), then that's the way it should be.

3. If you want to put on a little party later when you can afford more family/friends, do so.

I'm worried that you all are gonna be in financial trouble if you don't even have money now for a wedding or rings!

Nothing wrong with keeping it short and simple. And wear your dress and rent a tux - you already have the dress - why not wear it?

DH has the feeling you want a lot of people more for the gifts that will come and are complaining about not being able to afford a wedding.


Here's our story (we've both been married before). We moved our wedding up over a year (due to the "living together" and having our sons all in the house.....setting an example). We didn't want a lot of extras - not necessary for us. It would have been nice but not necessary.

For a few reasons, it wound up at the courthouse (long story) and we went out to dinner at a local restaurant with the family that came. We paid for ourselves and our kids. The rest of family understood they were to pay for their own meals. Worked out well.

We do plan on a "renewing of vows" in our church soon - just so its more "official" before God; but we know that God was present even in the courtroom
post #16 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrouchingCheese View Post
We can't afford to live apart, each of us helps pay the bills. He can't move back in with his parents as it's too far from work, it's the same problem with me.

Tell me if this idea sounds cheesy (thanks katiemae for the idea!!):

In December have a small ceremony with just immediate family (parents, grandparents, and siblings) and the wedding party people (that total would be about 40). Have the dress, cake, some food, etc. Have the reception in the basement of the church (it wouldn't cost any more, and my grandma would prefer that).

Then, next June, have a BBQ party with no ceremony, dress, tuxes, etc. with everyone at a local park. Invite all of the aunts/uncles/cousins and other friends. Have the DJ, dancing, all that stuff, just no dressing up too much and no ceremony.

Would that be cheesy?
Not cheesy at all! Go for it and Good Luck!!
post #17 of 25
get married twice...

Ok so I know that sounds expensive but we actually got married in November by JOP maybe your pastor could do it though, and then in june we had a big wedding with friends and family, we did it that way because of money and hubby was worried about getting deployed and leaving me, me being english and him American there were all kinds of reasons, we kept the first wedding a secret so not to upset anyone... so we had a wedding in November then a wedding and reception in June in America and then a reception in England in July ( so yeah you can see why we had to save some money)

I saved a lot by buying things on ebay, making my wedding favours and invites and also my dad was incharge of the music he hired some lights and a microphone and plugged in his ipod! We saved alot of money on the cake by having a small wedding cake and a sheet cake, and choosing a local small reception venue, Our day was still very special!

oh and our photographer was a friend on a forum so we saved some money there and also my brother just set up a camcorder for the ceromony...
post #18 of 25
I would say go with Katie's idea. You sound jazzed about it. Just make sure it's what you WANT. You don't want to put yourself in a position where you'll feel resentful towards your spouse/MIL (for rushing the event) after the fact.

Congrats and good luck!
post #19 of 25
My husband and I were legally married before we had our real wedding for a few reasons. One, he was still assigned to Korea and came for two weeks leave to get married in the states, two, I was pregnant (surrogate to another military family) and I didn't want to wear a maternity dress, and three, because I was recently honorably discharged from the AF, we didn't have enough money for a nice wedding so we had to save up.
My parents helped me with the food because we had a dinner reception. We bought EVERYTHING in bulk the day before from Sam's Club. (Great prices for LOTS of food!) Our neighbor helped us with food storage and cooking everything the day of.
The veil with hair comb came from Michaels crafts (or JoAnnes, I can't remember now.) which was much cheaper than $60 for the same darn thing at a boutique.
My step-sister did my hair with a slick side part, high bun with curls and a few falling curls. Because my hair is so thick, he couldn't have all my hair up on top, so I had a small ponytail hidden under the veil. I even had a small tiara from my old high school prom!
The photographer was a friend, my Dad was the DJ with his Mac laptop. We brought the speakers from my parents home and set them up in a corner. The reception was at a Days Inn that was newly renovated and under new management because of the year before's hurricanes. It was sooo nice and was in my wedding colors, sage green and light pink! The manager was taking a lot of wedding management advice from my step-mom because he had another wedding reception to do two weeks after ours that was going to be 4 times bigger! We were guinea pigs.
I made the party favors with little plastic martini favors from WalMart, some trim of the wedding colors and cinnamon love mints from Michael's/JoAnnes (Still can't remember but I'm leaning more towards Michael's.)
The flower decorations were half real and half fake. It saved some money and yet looked great! My bouquet, bridemaid's bouquet and the parents' corsages and bootanires(sp?) were real of course. I chose white miniature roses that were lightly sprayed with pink on the edges. A normal rose doesn't look at great as three miniatures. Plus, spraying wasn't costly at all compared to specialty grown roses.
We invited three of my best friends, people who knew me well from growing up, neighbors and relatives. Most of my husband's family couldn't make it because they're so spread out but his grandparents who raised him as well and his uncle came along with two of his best friends. (One who was the best man.)
We wanted to get married on the beach, but the Indian River Lagoon was close enough. (Honestly, the beach was just about 10 miles away! ) The reception was just on the other side of the river too.

And why not wear your dress?! Goodness, weddings are all about the bride, haven't you heard?

We plan on having our second wedding in about 5 years, this time near my husband's family.
post #20 of 25
I like Katie's idea.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
DH has the feeling you want a lot of people more for the gifts that will come and are complaining about not being able to afford a wedding.
Since you and DH don't know the OP, that is a really harsh comment IMO. Maybe they want a large wedding to share their joy with family & friends. This is her first wedding, not her second. Many people have elaborate first weddings. I had 250 at my wedding and I wasn't in it for the gifts.
post #21 of 25
I apoligize, but that was his thoughts when reading it. You are right - we don't know them, but sounds like money issues are a big problem and that's not a good way to start out.

But whether its a first or second, etc wedding it does NOT have to be a big one. IMO people spend far too much on a wedding or their parents do.....kinda seems like a "impress the relatives" thing!
post #22 of 25
Whatever it is that you decide to do, make sure its what BOTH of you want. Dont put what you want aside just to make it go faster for him! And is it that he cant have the job because he is "living in sin?" Why not try to find some temp. jobs (after all christmas is coming up and all the retail places are hiring extra help) and save up and then get married and he can pursue this career?
But the small wedding and the big BBQ does sound like a great idea!
post #23 of 25
Whatever you do, please wear your dress and walk down an aisle for your grandfather, okay? You'll always be glad you did that.

Nikki's ideas are excellent! You don't need little printed napkins and matchbooks and party favors and fancy centerpieces and flowers all over the place. Just put one tall, perfect taper in the center of each table and dim the room lights... scatter some pearlized or metallic confetti on the tables to create sparkles... it'll be lovely!

And I wouldn't bother with liquor -- if you have a 10:00 wedding, just pass around mimosas for toasting, and no one will expect anything more. Time the reception to break around noon, so everyone can go out to lunch afterward, and you're home free!
post #24 of 25
There have been some excellent suggestions, but the one thing said by others that I want to ditto, ditto, ditto is to have the wedding that you two want. If that means a small wedding in December with you in your gown and your grandfather there, then that is what you do.

Re decorations or cakes etc., do what you would love most. Me...I had simple glasses (looked like small vases, but were water glasses from a cash and carry..LOL) filled with wild flowers my Aunt Pat had picked. What money I did spend on flowers went for bridesmaids and my bouquet, and for parents/grandparents of bride and groom. I've seen absolutely exquisite roses at Costco, and more than once, have seen a gal buying them to take to her wedding (hair and makeup done, standing in line at Costco...made me smile, and send them silent best wishes).

I made my own favors, we made our own wedding programs (printed at Kinko's the day before, dh designed them), best friends sang my favorite song (helped that they were professional musicians), my aunt made Italian cookies for us to pass out at the reception...it was what I wanted, small, with the touches important to me (the cookies for instance)..and only you two know what means the most to you.
post #25 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by StacyD1987 View Post
The veil with hair comb came from Michaels crafts (or JoAnnes, I can't remember now.) which was much cheaper than $60 for the same darn thing at a boutique.
Don't forget the wedding friendly shops like Michaels, JoAnn Fabrics, eBay (is great!!! You can get 100 little favor bags for $5).

Also I plan on making my own invitations...we're like you where we only have 85 people that we're inviting and probably about 60 addresses to send to. It's WAAAAAAYYY cheaper than getting them made for you. All you need is a printer.
(trust me I looked into a local place and they looked exactly like the stuff you buy at Michael's and print off on your computer. Even eBay is a rip off...)
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