The Truth Hurts

How to Get Past the Stupid Shit People Say About Your Wedding Planning (and You), and Survive!

It’s no secret that people say stupid shit, right? I mean, sometimes I am absolutely dumfounded at the pure stupidity uttered from people who generally mean well, but can’t seem to find the right sequence of words to string together to make what they are  TRYING to say purposeful and/or helpful. And, oftentimes, the “offender” will recognize their error in judgement almost immediately (probably after seeing you cringe), put their foot in their mouth and apologize, but those other times… Oh my Gaaawwwd! UGH! The “offender” is completely clueless, continuing on with their judgy diatribe of words, leaving you to pick up the pieces of your pride and self worth. Am I right? Did you just picture a few “offenders”? So, how can you, bridey, get past the stupid shit people are inevitably going to say to you about your wedding plans (and you personally) at a time when you are at your most vulnerable?

Here's some of the stupidest shit people say — and the solutions:

The Complimenter: This is by FAR my favorite insultingly awesome “compliment” I hear my clients grieve over (usually for weeks).

Offender: “Oh my goodness! You look great! You’ve definitely lost A LOT of weight.” You see, this seems and feels like a compliment, however the implication is that you had A LOT of weight to lose, and that you were a giant fat ass prior to losing all of this weight for the wedding.

The solution?: Reinterpret the statement as, “Oh my goodness! You look great! You’ve clearly been working hard.” Because, in my heart of hearts, bridey, I know that this is what the “offender” meant to say. It’s just that they didn’t say it tactfully, which means you have to change how you hear it.

The Comparer: When the “offender” is trying to stir the shit… This bitch knows exactly what she is doing, and is purposefully trying to get you riled up.

Offender: “Wow. When I planned my wedding, I had all of my vendors lined up within weeks of choosing the date.” OR “I already had all of that stuff done at this point in the planning.” The implication here is that you are way behind the eight ball, and you’re fucked; your wedding is fucked, and she’s better than you.

The solution?: Rise above, bridey, rise above! Walk away from this conversation, and rid yourself of the bullshit comparison. Even if you ARE feeling behind in your wedding planning, you don’t want to engage with somebody who isn’t there to help you, but would rather compete with you. So, don’t compete. And, the good news for you slackers (kidding), is that being behind in your wedding planning doesn’t mean you won’t catch up. And fast. A lot of the time, all it takes is an hour or two to sit down, get yourself organized, and then knock things off of that “to-do” list.

The Inquisitor: We all have these people in our lives. They are super inquisitive, super annoying, and super nosy. Quite simply, they ask too many questions and don’t know when to quit.

Offender: “Your ring is huge! I can only imagine what your wedding budget looks like…” OR “How much is this whole ‘wedding thing’ setting you back?” OR “How does it feel to be the last of you friends getting married?” See what I mean? Too many fucking questions! Rude ones! Insensitive ones!

The solution?: Other than saying nothing and walking away? Or being an asshole (I give you permission, but…)? Don’t use seven words when four will do (totally stole this line from Brad Pitt in Ocean's Eleven)… Be short and concise as you gently tell the “offender” to mind their own business. You don’t have to answer these questions, bridey. In fact, please don’t. Shut it down, and move on.

The Diminisher: This one KILLS me. Like scrape me off of a busy road, kind of kills me… The diminisher has a tendency to make you feel small for caring as much as you do about your wedding (and the planning).

Offender: “I don’t know what the big deal is… It’s just one day.” Holy shit! Hold me back! Buuuuuut, the thing is, I actually agree with the “offender” because it IS just one day, and your marriage is about so.much.more than the day itself. However, it is a stressful, expensive and emotional day, and to downplay the enormity of it gives me rage.

The solution?: Don’t give in. Don’t let the “offender” get away with that bullshit, while at the same time don’t sink down to their level. There is no need to justify this statement. Simply say that it’s important to you, and they don’t have to understand.

The “Ought-er”: The ought-er is somebody who generally means well, but has a strong opinion about what you should be doing.

Offender: “You ought-a look into getting your haircut before the wedding.” OR “You ought-a make sure you have the budget for the extra flowers.” OR “You ought-a BLAH BLAH BLAH!!!” We get it, and perhaps you’re right, but whenever anybody starts a sentence with “you ought-a”, I immediately tune out because I am annoyed.

The solution?: Tune it out like I do. The ought-er is usually a nice person who has your best interests in mind, but doesn’t express it well. So be polite and take the “ought-er” with a grain of salt.

Bridey, you are doing great! It’s super important for you to ignore the stupid shit people say as you plan your wedding. 99% of the time, it’s them, not you!!! So, keep your wits about you, and continue to slay the cray!!!

Photo by Sweet Ice Cream Photography

Reboot ~ Please Don't Come to My Wedding... How Cutting the Guest List Means Cutting the Cord

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“Please don’t come to my wedding,” she said jokingly, although with a bit of truth behind her words. I laughed with her because I understand how out of control the guest list can become, and when those invitees whom you thought were not going to accept your (strained) invitation decide to grace you with their presence, along with all of those guests you knew were going to come to your wedding, the budget struggle and the lost prospect of an intimate wedding suddenly become very, very real. Bridey, the guest list is probably the hardest part of wedding planning you will encounter because it affects everything. Every decision. Every selection. Every dollar.

So, what is a bride to do? How do you cut the guest list so that you don’t have to cross your fingers every time an RSVP arrives? How do you do it without hurting feelings? Honestly, you don’t. Somebody is going to be hurt because they weren’t invited even if they had no intention of going to your wedding. That’s just how it goes. And it sucks, but that’s the reality of it. So, I need you to do something for me. Imagine a world where you got to decide who would be in attendance on one of the biggest days of your life. Really think about it. Now, write it down. Who’s on that list, bridey? Close family, friends, etc.. Right? Awesome. Now, stop thinking about who’s not on the list and start thinking about how you’re going to handle your ideal guest list. Because, this is it! And for those who didn’t make the cut? Too bad. Remember, you don’t have to apologize, you just have to understand the consequences of your actions and figure out the balance between the two.

Bridey, the truth? No bullshit? Those you don’t invite will be pissed off and hurt, and potentially hold a grudge against you for the rest of their life (and yours). So, the question becomes, are you willing to cut the cord? It’s completely possible that some of these people will never speak to you again, un-friend you on FaceBook, and fall off entirely. And honestly, this might not be a bad thing. Perhaps it’s even an opportunity to filter out the people in your life you’ve been dying to let go of, but haven’t quite found the right excuse. Well, I’d say that by not inviting them to your wedding you’re pretty much sealing the deal!

Although, what about those who you still adore, but didn’t make the cut simply because by inviting them would mean that you would have to invite the string of relatives associated with them (to keep it “fair”)? Sadly, they might end up being collateral damage, however if you’re able to have an honest conversation about your reasoning, then you could potentially salvage these relationships. But, there is no guarantee, and that is what you have to internalize and decide how important certain relationships are to you. And, only you can answer that question.

Look, I know it’s not easy, be that as it may, it’s still your wedding, and your choice. In my opinion, down the road… you’ll end up filtering out those people who really don’t matter to you or make much of a difference in your life (family or not) simply by living. That’s how it goes. So, why not cut the cord now and mark your wedding day as the day you didn’t succumb to the pressure of being all inclusive even at your own expense (literally and figuratively). Got it? Good! Now, go write your list! And good luck!

Image via Lanty

ReBoot! ~ Wedding Planning... A Job You are Completely Unqualified For??

Congratulations! You’ve just been hired to do a job you are completely unqualified for… Best of luck! I mean… What if that really was the case? What if you were hired to do a job in which you lacked the appropriate credentials and connections to be successful? Sounds awful, right? And, why the fuck would you accept that kind of responsibility knowingly? Well, for most of you, I just described the minute after you told your friends and family you about your engagement. Yup! Your engagement and plans to betroth has just become your brand new, shiny job; one that has you completely ecstatic, and terrified at the same time. One that looks good on paper, but can totally suck and suck the life out of you at the same time. Bridey, welcome to the most unqualified time in your life (well, unless you’re already a parent!!). Welcome to your engagement! 

I know, I know, I’m a bitch for ruining the moment, and I hate to rain on your sparkly, bridal parade, but better you have some warning about the next step as opposed to thinking that this experience is going to be 100% rainbows and unicorns. I meet very few brides who are totally excited and ready for the task at hand. Because planning a wedding is a lot of work and takes a lot of commitment. And, the brides that are totally onboard, are usually an event planner, a spreadsheet whore or a control freak (that doesn’t end so well) who has some serious issues with pretty much every stage of the game. So, where does that leave you? Don’t worry, bridey, you’ll be fine. Just allow me to educate you a bit…

Last year, I wrote a piece called, Why Planning Your Wedding Actually IS a Full Time Job, and one of the primary points highlighted in the article isn’t the actual planning of the wedding, it’s more about the anxiety and feelings of inadequacy when it comes to family dynamics and money. For some you, these are issues you may deal with daily, but when you are planning your wedding, they become intensified and daunting. And kind of like a new job (qualified or not), you’re faced with new situations, tons of decisions and several conversations that feel uncomfortable and borderline risky. Risky? Yes, risky. Because with each decision, your psyche fucks with you, and tells you that you’re risking the budget or that you’re risking the delicate equilibrium that is your immediate family or that you’re risking your friendships… And the thing is, bridey, you can’t quit. You can’t decide not to move forward. (Well, unless you’re me. I eloped, but that came with it’s own set consequences.) But, you can persevere. 

How? Here are a few quick suggestions:

1. Cut yourself some some fucking slack! You’ve never done this before (well, most of you haven’t), and there is no need to be so hard on yourself. Take your time, filter out the naysayers and the noise, put your head down and just do it. Oh, and… See #2.

2. Surround yourself with professionals. PERIOD. I’ve said it a million times, bridey! But, if you don’t know what you’re doing, then hire people who do. We don’t hesitate to do this for every other facet of our lives, so why should your wedding planning be any different? Wedding professionals like planners, gifted photographers, etc. will walk you though the tough decisions, and advise you when you’re stuck. So, put some extra dough in the budget and consider it your “piece of mind” fund.

3. Avoid the 3 Ps…. the 3 Ps. Pressure, precedence and perfection. They all suck, and most of the time they are usually self-induced. So let it go…

4. Be honest with your fiancé, yourself and your family. AT THE BEGINNING. Don’t leave room for “risky" behavior to butt in… Even in a job that has you feeling insecure, honesty really is the best policy.

5. Please have fun. I mean, it’s not fun a lot of the time, but this industry and wedding planning have become synonymous with fucking rainbows, unicorns, glitter and cupcakes… So, when you come across one of those things, enjoy it. 

So, bridey, are you going to quit this terrible job that your 100% unqualified for? Fuck no you’re not! You’re going to plow through, and own it because if nothing else, it will get you ready for another job you may not be 100% qualified for… Marriage.

Image via Jobboard Finder News

Five Important “Bridal Traits” I Learned from My Favorite Bride

Five Important “Bridal Traits” I Learned from My Favorite Bride
As much as I attempt to educate you brideys with my anecdotes, crazy bitchy bride stories and a few nightmares, I think it’s only fair that I tell you a bit about one of my absolute favorite brides (like ever). Not only was she super cool, gorgeous and fun, but also really smart and trusting… of me, and the vendors we picked TOGETHER! She embraced the wedding planning process; the good the bad and the crazy, and walked around like she had a secret. Like a badass. You know that feeling… It’s like nobody can touch you, you feel almost invincible and awesome (TOTALLY the way I feel in Vegas!).

5 Reasons Why I Am the Only Wedding Planner on Earth Who Feels Bad for Prince Harry + Meghan Markle

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I am definitely a minority here. I mean, I am probably the only chick on the planet, let alone wedding planner, who is not excited about the upcoming royal nuptials between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. When I’ve mentioned this publicly (not on social media or anything crazy like that…) several eyebrows become raised, the music stops and I feel like I am standing in the middle of the room with a hot potato in my hands. My peers promptly utter, “Whaaaaaa?”,  like I have suddenly sprouted a unicorn horn, have rainbows shooting out of my ass, and hooves bulging from underneath my dress. I am instantly grilled on how I could possibly say such a thing. “Isn’t this your thing?” they ask. “Nope. Not really… I actually feel bad for them.” I say holding eye contact (just so I can catch their reaction to such a preposterous statement). “You feel BAD for them? You feel bad for two super wealthy, super attractive, and super famous (not to mention royal) people getting married?” they ask, stunned. “Yup.”I say. And immediately I am asked, “WHY?” Why? Well, I’ll give you five reasons…

1. I don’t care what anybody says, if Price Harry and Meghan Markle wanted to have a backyard BBQ wedding with a live band and tiki torches, or a tropical, destination wedding where they exchanged vows barefoot on a sandy beach, or a swanky, reception style, all-white wedding, it would never happen. It would never happen because their wedding and their wedding plans are probably 99% out of their control. Will they choose their color scheme? Sure. Will they have their hand in selecting the florals? Possibly. But, when it comes down to making their wedding all about them and who they are as a couple? Their banana flavored wedding cake is most likely the only decision they will make that is all their own. And frankly? That makes me sad for them. Because I love their story, and how they got to know each other, and I believe we are all missing out on the wedding they could have planned together without restrictions. Yeah, I’m pretty sure it would have been pretty fucking amazing. Don’t you?

2. Um, can we just talk about the guest list for a second? Prince William and Princess Catherine had 1900 people on the guest list. NINETEEN HUNDRED. And, I’m sure they knew all of guests… Sounds incredibly intimate, right? Even if Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have half of that  number (I’ll do the math for you, 850 guests), that’s still a fuckload of people celebrating the most important, and biggest days of your life. That’s like four weddings in one. I mean, holy shit… just imagine going from table to table to greet all in attendance?! And, I’m guessing it’s not too likely they will skip this particular piece of wedding etiquette, leaving them very little time to actually enjoy their wedding day.

3. Unlimited budget. OMG. Doesn’t that sound sexy? Unlimited budget… YES! It sure does! Who doesn’t love an unlimited budget? Right? It’s SO fucking sexy! As a wedding planner, when I have the opportunity to work with a couple rockin’ an unlimited budget, I get excited. Actually, I get elated! Because instead of squashing Pinterest dreams with the reality of the price behind the curtain, I get to help make dreams happen. I don’t have to say “no”, and that is an awesome feeling! But, although a tremendous budget is usually a tremendous blessing, it comes with a price of it’s own. PRESSURE FOR PERFECTION. More money? More problems. More perfection. And in Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s case? Gobs of it. Heaps of it. Loads of it. And, I don’t know a soul in the world (famous or not) who loves the idea of being bogged down with the pressure of perfection.

4. When you’re Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, there’s no such thing as skeletons in the closet. Those suckers are on display for the world to see. And, unfortunately, the most common complaint I hear from couples getting married? Family skeletons barreling out of the closet wrecking havoc on the wedding planning equilibrium. It sucks, but it happens, and you deal with it. But having to deal with it in a very public forum? UGH. Bridey, I’m not suggesting that I know anything about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s skeletons, but we all got ‘em, sooooooo….. 

5. We all love a good viral video, right? We watch cute cats chasing their tails, giggling babies, people tripping over their own two feet, etc. But, when it comes to your wedding, it’s nerve-wracking enough to even think about tripping down the aisle or fainting or crying in front of friends and family, right? And, broadcasted for the world to see? Terrifying! There is no shelter for these two… Nowhere to hide, and considering the enormity of the day without all of these obstacles, this has got to be weighing on these two, and that makes me feel sad for them.  

So, there you have it. Yes, I feel bad for two super wealthy, super attractive, and super famous (not to mention royal) people getting married.                                                          

Image via Getty Images

Reasons 990 through 999 Why You Need to Hire a Wedding Planner

It seems so ironic that as my wedding season is simmering down, there’s an entire crop of soon-to-be engaged brides out there. While I’m taking a deep breath, lounging in front of Netflix and chilling the fuck out, you, bridey, are gearing up to plan the biggest event of your life. Did you hear me? THE BIGGEST EVENT OF YOUR LIFE. And whenever you’re tasked with anything of that magnitude, like managing a huge event at work or planning your family reunion or even a mega Christmas dinner, odds are you raise your hand and ask for help, right? Seems like the most logical thing to do. But, here’s the thing… So many of you don’t ask for help, from a professional, when you’re planning your wedding. You automatically dismiss the biggest piece of the wedding planning puzzle as superfluous and too expensive. But, you shouldn’t, and here’s a million more reasons (actually, just ten really good reasons) why you need to hire a wedding planner to help you get through it.

Reason 990: You’ve never planned a wedding before, and while you think it’s going to be magical with unicorns floating everywhere as you sip champagne, it can be fucking brutal and stressful. So, hire somebody who does this for a living and can create a version of your wedding so fantastic that you can’t even believe it’s your own. Bridey, think of a wedding planner as a curator or guardian of the biggest day of your life;  somebody who always has your best interests in mind and will absorb your wedding planning stress so that you can enjoy being engaged.

Reason 991: Raise your hand if you have a lot of spare time. Um, I’m guessing not, right? But, if you have an extra 15-20 hours in your week to put towards wedding planning, then by all means, don’t hire a wedding planner. Although for those of you who don’t have those extra hours, hire a wedding planner so that she (or he) can spend her time so that you don’t have to spend yours. I mean, c’mon bridey, you can’t even get your ass to the gym consistently without juggling your day appropriately! 

Reason 992: A wedding planner will do it better than you. Plain and simple. Bridey, I am a wedding planner (writer, blogger, mother, etc.) who knew nothing about building and maintaining a website, so you know what I did? I hired somebody who does know how to do it even though there is a TON of information about how I could do it myself. But, you know what? Fuck that! Because a professional will do it better than me, just like hiring a professional wedding planner will plan your wedding better than you.

Reason 993: Shit will go wrong leading up to your wedding day or on the day itself. And having to deal with that craziness while you’re friends and family are flying into town, and while you’re trying to enjoy some down time really sucks. So let somebody else handle these “fires” so that you don’t have to. Let somebody else be your problem solver… Consider it your insurance policy.

Reason 994: Budget. Yuck! Such a dirty word… But, certainly an important aspect of wedding planning. And because you’ve never planned a wedding, I think it’s fairly safe to say that you don’t know what things like wedding flowers or a DJ or fancy linens cost, right? Right! But, a wedding planner does know what things cost, and can direct you according to your budget. The budget you two created together!

Reason 995: Can you say impartial? Or neutral party? Or mediator? Bridey, there will be times when you need somewhat of a referee to help you though a tough planning experience. Maybe you and your fiancé are at odds with who gets to provide a toast at your wedding or maybe you’re politely going round and round with your soon to be MIL about décor. Whatever the case may be, let somebody else be the voice of reason so that things don’t get ugly.

Reason 996: Inside information anybody? Bridey, I don’t expect you to know what you’re doing in my world. Because it’s just that, my world. And, similarly, I’d have no idea what to do in your world. But, if I found myself in your world, wandering around in unknown territory, you can sure as hell bet that I’d get help navigating from somebody who knew where to go. So, hire a wedding planner and use us for our inside scoop!

Reason 997: Details. Details. Details. I fucking love them. And, most of “my kind” do too. And you know what one of my favorite parts of wedding planning is? Creating the timeline. Some of you might have just had a panic attack while thinking about all of the moving parts, but I LOVE a good timeline, and seeing it all come together. It’s like following a script… All you, bridey, need to know how to do is read.

Reason 998: Ever wonder who handles all of the “stuff” at the end of a wedding? Stuff like making sure your gifts/cards make it back to your guest room or that the family photographs make it safely back to where they came from or even the whereabouts of your veil? Without a wedding planner, you and your exhausted (and potentially drunk) groom do. Unless you have a wedding planner. Bridey, not only will a wedding planner handle all of the “day of” stuff, but they will handle the logistics on the backend too. 

Reason 999: Because you will absolutely look back and wish you had hired a wedding planner. Be 100% present on your wedding day and the days leading up to it. Let somebody else worry or you.

Photo by Sweet Ice Cream Photography

Five Reasons NOT to Surround Yourself with “Yessers” While Planning Your Wedding

She’s the friend that tells you that your glitter nail polish should be reserved for a seven year old little girl. She’s the friend that sides with your sig other when you’re whining about an argument you had last night because he was actually right. She’s the friend that tells you that you don’t need the waffle when you can get the fried chicken by itself. This friend, bridey? This friend, is your real friend who tells you the truth even when it isn’t exactly what you want to hear, and she’s absolutely who you need around while planning your wedding. Contrary to what you might think, you don’t need a gaggle of girls (and boys too) “yessing” you to death and agreeing with all of the shit you say as you plan your wedding because it can drastically slow you down and prolong your decisions instead of helping you come to the right one. But, the top five reasons why you shouldn’t surround yourself with “yessers” while planning your wedding?

1. Because a yesser is so worried about upsetting the contrived facade of a happy bride planning her incredible wedding that she is afraid to tell you that you’re being ridiculous when you are in fact being ridiculous. It’s important to have your friends tell you that surpassing your budget by three thousand dollars on your wedding dress is stupid. Or that nobody can really tell the difference between chartreuse and lime green linens so make a decision and move on. This friend doesn’t concern herself with worrying about your precious bridal feelings (I mean, she’s not an asshole either), but instead, focuses on being a true friend and helping you make tough choices.

2. Because a yesser is phoning it in, and sometimes it’s by accident. Ever “yes” somebody just so they’ll shut the fuck up? Seriously, if you answered “no” to this question, then you’re totally lying. I’m ashamed to admit it, but I have definitely “yessed” somebody simply to end a brutal conversation or avoid a disagreement that I didn’t feel like engaging (no pun) in. And you know what, bridey? This brand of yesser? She’s not necessarily mean spirited, just not interested. Perhaps you’ve included her in your bridal party and she’s not into it, but felt badly declining. So rather than immerse herself in lengthy conversations she doesn’t care about, she says “yes” just to shut you up. If you feel like you got yourself one of these, then cut the cord. Trust me, you’d be doing both of you a favor!

3. Because some of these yessers? They’re not really your friends. They’re followers. They are only there because everybody else is doing it. And, unlike the followers you have on instagram, twitter, facebook, etc., this yesser is a follower because they don’t have a mind of their own so they need to do what everybody else is doing. I mean they might not even like you or care that you’re getting married! They’re superfluous; they’re redundant; they’re a stupid waste of a bar stool and cocktail. Okay, that definitely came out a lot meaner than I had anticipated, but still all true. If you’re smart bridey, you’ll steer clear of this follower.

4. Because a yesser feeds you when she should be encouraging you. It’s like an intertwining of bullshit, and frankly, it gets confusing. Bridey, your friends should be helping you be decisive and true to yourself during the wedding planning process, not simply yessing you because that’s what they think you want to hear. It’s counterintuitive. A real friend will help you focus on what’s important, has your best interests in mind, but will tell you the truth too.  

5. Because some yessers? Well, they like to be “yessed”, so they will yes you to death if you allow it only because that’s what they think you want. If you suspect that this is happening, then it’s your turn to be honest and let then know that you value their opinion and truly need it so please stop the bullshit.

Bridey, we are all intuitive. And, trust me when I tell you that you know who these people are, and by having them “yes” your every move you will only make your wedding planning more difficult. So don’t. Consider this a cheat sheet, and if you even think that one of your friends falls into any of these categories either confront it immediately or purposefully leave them out of your inner circle. Got it? Good! Stay bitchless!

Photo by Sam Manns on Unsplash

Five REAL Reasons Why Nobody Wants to Come to Your Wedding

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Does anybody else think it’s ironic that nobody wants to come to your wedding, while concurrently, you’re secretly hoping they don’t? Really think about that. I mean, I know you want certain people to come to your wedding and certain people actually do want to come to your wedding, but what about the majority? Oftentimes, you don’t want them and they don’t want you. Strangely enough, sometimes, it’s for very similar reasons. You want to save money, and they don’t want to spend it. You don’t want to be surrounded with people you don’t care about on your wedding day, and they don’t want to be there out of obligation. To them, your wedding is a hassle; an interruption to an otherwise lovely weekend. So where’s the happy medium? And, what about the other reasons people don’t want to come to your wedding? Is it always about the money? No, it’s not, and some of the reasons will surprise you…

Bridey, last month I wrote a post titled, Please Don’t Come to My Wedding… How Cutting the Guest List Can Mean Cutting the Cord. That article was more about you, bridey, relieving yourself of toxic relationships simply by cutting certain people from your guest list, your budget and ultimately from your life, but how about some insight as to why people don’t want to come to your wedding (that has nothing to do with money). What other reasons could there possible be? Several actually… And, you better sit down because the truth hurts.

1. Perhaps they don’t like you as much as you like them. Whoops! Maybe I shouldn’t have started with such a doozy. But, please don’t kill the messenger, because it’s true. Just a stab in the dark, but this could be their way of cutting the cord with you in the same way not inviting somebody to your wedding is your way of cutting the cord with them. It goes both ways, it’s just hard to be on the receiving end.

2. Maybe they don’t like your who you’re going to marry, and don’t think you’ll be a together in the long run. Why go to a wedding to celebrate a couple who, in their opinion, has no chance of making it? And, if this IS the case, then I’m guessing that on some level, you, bridey, already knew this and therefore the RSVP shouldn’t come as a surprise.

3. Did you go to their wedding? No? Well, what goes around comes around. Sure, it’s childish, but they’re getting even with you. Even if you had a valid reason, they’re obviously still pissed off, and consider not going to your wedding as retaliation. This person isn’t married? Are they engaged? Because if they are, perhaps you’re not on their guest list, so it’s only fair if they don’t go to your wedding.

4. It’s possible that their RSVP has nothing to do with you, bridey. Maybe they’re just in a shitty place personally, and the idea of being around happy people, happily celebrating and just being happy is the last thing they want. I mean, we’ve all been there and it sucks, and feeling depressed in a big crowd of people makes it worse.

5. Two words: Vacation Time. Or lack thereof… Using those precious and limited vacation days for your wedding isn’t exactly the vacation they had in mind. Because your day can’t compete with a week in sunny and fabulous destinations like Barbados, St. Thomas, Cabo…

Bridey, we’ll never really know why people do the crazy shit they do or what makes them tick. And, sadly, this list could have been ten deep, but the five listed above are the most “popular”. However, I’ve been doing this long enough to tell you that if they don’t want to come to your wedding, then you’re 100% better off without them there. So, please, try not to dwell on the people that aren’t coming, and focus on the people that are coming to your wedding! Got it?

Photograph viaPhoto by Ben Rosett on Unsplash

Wedding Woes... Five Ways to Ditch the Professional Worrier, and Just Get Shit Done!

This article is dedicated to MK.

This article is dedicated to MK.

Are you a professional worrier? Do you worry about shit you can’t control? Do you worry about shit you can control? Do you worry that you worry too much? Do you stay up half the night thinking about witty retorts to potential arguments that will most likely never (in a million years) happen? Well, depending on the severity of your worrisome worrying, hopefully I can help. Well, from a wedding planning standpoint that is… And, if you’re in the midst of planning a wedding, I’m sure you’re worrying is currently out of control, taking over life as you know it and you’re on the brink of worrying yourself right to Las Vegas.

Here’s the thing, bridey, stop. Stop worrying and start doing. Let go of the need to think big picture, and start thinking about conquering each step of the planning one at a time. How? Well, it’s really quite simple. Here are five ways to ditch your professional worrier persona and just get shit done:

1. Hire an actual professional worrier… Ahem, a wedding planner. I know your budget is small, and I know you’re already stretching to make this wedding work, and I know that it’s fucking hard, but when you hire somebody equipped to handle the stress and worry for you, then you’ve already won a huge battle. Hiring a wedding planner isn’t an option for you? Well, frankly, that’s just stupid, because if you think about it, we use professionals for every other big purchase and big dream in our lives, so why your wedding isn’t under this umbrella is beyond me. But, there’s still something you can do. Hire a “day of” or “month of” wedding planner to handle the logistics leading up to your wedding, and on your wedding day so at the very least, you don’t have to be a worrywart as you walk down the aisle.

2. Take a break. Hell, take twenty-five breaks. It really doesn’t matter how many times you take a break from wedding planning, it matters how many times you get back into the game. You don’t need to be planning your wedding every.second of every.day. Set small goals, stick to them, and then take a fucking break. Repeat.

3. Organize yourself early on. Bridey, if you’re a procrastinator and you know it (clap your hands… just kidding), then get ahead of it. I mean, there are a billion wedding planning tools out there to help you stay organized leading up to your wedding day, so just pick one, and get going. This isn’t rocket science, it’s a wedding, and more than that, it’s a celebration of your love for one another. So, it’s a good idea to keep that in the back of your mind when shit feels overwhelming or you’ve gotten off track. Okay?

4. Have a lot of sex… Obviously with the dude or girl you’re marrying. (For some peeps, I know it’s not so cut and dry!) I’ve said this several times, and I’ll say it again. Go do it! Sex releases endorphins (which make you happy), relaxes you and more than that, it brings you two closer. You’ll feel your worrying melt away after a good roll in the hay. Sorry! Couldn’t help it! But, you know what I mean! 

5. Move on. Bridey, did you make a decision? Did you finally determine the color scheme and florals? Congratulations! That’s awesome! So move forward. Keep going. Don’t look back! Seriously, how many cheesy cliches will make you listen to me? Once you’ve made your choice, don’t go back! This will be your biggest downfall. Second guessing yourself never works out well for anybody no matter what decision they’re making in their life. Go with your gut and with what works well for you, and then fucking move on!

The thing is, bridey, I could give you 102 ways to stop worrying, but then you’d worry that you weren’t not-worrying enough, so I thought I’d begin with the five biggies… Just stay true to yourself and your sig other because there are going to be bigger battles down the road that will require more worrying than worrying about your wedding.

Shifting from the ‘Getting Married’ Phase to the ‘Getting Divorced’ Phase and Why...

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***I originally shared this piece on Huffington Post, but the response was strong enough that I wanted to share it with you here too. Bridey, this is definitely more of an already married post, but with a message about how important it is to put the same energy into your marriage as you put into planning your wedding.***

Bridey, suddenly, I find that I am at the age where people are getting divorced not getting married, and it’s totally fucked up. It hit me like a ton of bricks the other night after a few cocktails, and a lot of interesting conversation with some incredibly strong women sharing tidbits of life over some fried pickles (they’re really good) and French fries. I know, disgusting…but, it was a delicious guilty pleasure! Anyway, when I got home, I had a fucking epiphany and thought, “Oh shit, I am officially out of the getting married phase and in the divorce phase. How the hell did I get here, and so fast?”

The thing is, none of the ladies I was with are getting divorced, but we started talking about how hard marriage can be; juggling our careers, all of the kid shit, lives of our own, and through all of that, seeming to lose our connection with our sig other. And with thatclarity, it’s pretty easy to see why people get divorced… Because marriage is hard. Marriage is something that requires a ton of work and sacrifice, and sometimes it’s easier to give up that to put the work into it.

But, I wonder what would happen if we put the kind of pressure on ourselves for our marriage to be “perfect” instead of our wedding to be “perfect”. Seriously, think about how much, time, money and energy go into planning a wedding. Weeks and months and for some people, even years, right? And at the same time, think about how much time, money and energy go into getting a divorce? About the same (if not more) as your wedding… Please tell me I’m not the only one who sees the irony in that correlation! Right? Now ask yourself why we focus on ONE day, one fucking day, being “perfect” as opposed to focusing that energy into our marriage being “perfect”. Why should that one day, the first day of our marriage, be worth more than a lifetime of marital bliss. WHY?

It’s not. Your wedding day is not more important, but some people treat it as if it is; as if it’s the only thing that matters and the rest will fall into place afterwards. And, you know what? That’s bullshit. My vantage point as a wedding planner and as a married woman of more than a decade? Well, it seems as though you’re a whole lot less likely to give up planning a wedding when the stress feels overwhelming simply because you recognize that the stress is temporary, and a whole lot more comfortable giving up a marriage simply because the stress feels indefinite. But, what if we merged these feelings? What if we allowed ourselves to acknowledge that it’s okay to not be happy every.single.day of our marriage (because you won’t be), and that just because today sucks (and potentially next week too), doesn’t necessarily mean that we should quit (unless there is physical danger and/or abuse… then quit and run!).

Unhappiness can be temporary too, but only if you allow it to be. We could be talking about any facet of your life in which you are unhappy, and once you realize that it’s temporary, and you have control over it, it feels better, right? You decide to not be unhappy anymore, and work your ass off to fix what’s broken. You don’t deem yourself “bad” for being unhappy, so don’t do it in your marriage. Marriage is hard and could have made June Fucking Cleaver unhappy, but it doesn’t necessarily mean the two of you are “bad” together. It just means that you need to communicate and put time into it; just like you did when you were planning your wedding. And, please don’t mistake my tenacity to make it work for naivety. I know that “working at it” won’t fix all marriages, and that some are doomed from the beginning. However, I do think we give up too easily when things get tough as opposed to at least trying to move forward… TOGETHER.

Image via Kev Seto

Please Don't Come to My Wedding... How Cutting the Guest List Means Cutting the Cord

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“Please don’t come to my wedding,” she said jokingly, although with a bit of truth behind her words. I laughed with her because I understand how out of control the guest list can become, and when those invitees whom you thought were not going to accept your (strained) invitation decide to grace you with their presence, along with all of those guests you knew were going to come to your wedding, the budget struggle and the lost prospect of an intimate wedding suddenly become very, very real. Bridey, the guest list is probably the hardest part of wedding planning you will encounter because it affects everything. Every decision. Every selection. Every dollar.

So, what is a bride to do? How do you cut the guest list so that you don’t have to cross your fingers every time an RSVP arrives? How do you do it without hurting feelings? Honestly, you don’t. Somebody is going to be hurt because they weren’t invited even if they had no intention of going to your wedding. That’s just how it goes. And it sucks, but that’s the reality of it. So, I need you to do something for me. Imagine a world where you got to decide who would be in attendance on one of the biggest days of your life. Really think about it. Now, write it down. Who’s on that list, bridey? Close family, friends, etc.. Right? Awesome. Now, stop thinking about who’s not on the list and start thinking about how you’re going to handle your ideal guest list. Because, this is it! And for those who didn’t make the cut? Too bad. Remember, you don’t have to apologize, you just have to understand the consequences of your actions and figure out the balance between the two.

Bridey, the truth? No bullshit? Those you don’t invite will be pissed off and hurt, and potentially hold a grudge against you for the rest of their life (and yours). So, the question becomes, are you willing to cut the cord? It’s completely possible that some of these people will never speak to you again, un-friend you on FaceBook, and fall off entirely. And honestly, this might not be a bad thing. Perhaps it’s even an opportunity to filter out the people in your life you’ve been dying to let go of, but haven’t quite found the right excuse. Well, I’d say that by not inviting them to your wedding you’re pretty much sealing the deal!

Although, what about those who you still adore, but didn’t make the cut simply because by inviting them would mean that you would have to invite the string of relatives associated with them (to keep it “fair”)? Sadly, they might end up being collateral damage, however if you’re able to have an honest conversation about your reasoning, then you could potentially salvage these relationships. But, there is no guarantee, and that is what you have to internalize and decide how important certain relationships are to you. And, only you can answer that question.

Look, I know it’s not easy, be that as it may, it’s still your wedding, and your choice. In my opinion, down the road… you’ll end up filtering out those people who really don’t matter to you or make much of a difference in your life (family or not) simply by living. That’s how it goes. So, why not cut the cord now and mark your wedding day as the day you didn’t succumb to the pressure of being all inclusive even at your own expense (literally and figuratively). Got it? Good! Now, go write your list! And good luck!

Image via Lanty

An Open Letter to One of My Favorite Brides (and Grooms) Ever...

Recently I worked with one the best couples ever. Like in all of my years as a wedding planner, this B+G climbed their way to the top of my awesome list immediately. Why? Well, they were kind and respectful (to me and to each other), they valued my opinion as their wedding planner and the opinions of their other wedding vendors, and they had some serious perspective about what it meant to get and be married. Actually, all they wanted was to be married, to each other, and then move forward with their lives. I became involved simply because they needed some direction and advice on how to execute a low key yet lovely day. What started as a wedding consulting call, morphed into wedding planning, and resulted in friendship. I have no doubt that this couple will be in my life for a long time. 

But, what made them so special? What put them on my awesome list? Well, at first it was the union of our personalities and some serious open mindedness. Initially this bride called for my wedding planning advice. But, after chatting for an hour, she listened to what I had to say, and then acted on it. I mean, fuck yeah! I love when someone who calls on me as an "expert" actually listens to me and runs with my advice. Because my biggest pet peeve is working with a client who needs/wants advice, but then thinks they know more than I do. I mean, why call me if you (think you) know more than I do? Right? A few days later she initiated another call and then ultimately hired Bitchless Bride to plan her wedding!! But, what really got me about this B+G was their spot on perspective. Their excitement for each other was apparent and everything else took a back seat. They never got wrapped up in the bullshit. They never wanted to "make a big thing" out of their wedding. They simply wanted to be together.

Actually, what they wanted was for their guests to have an amazing experience coupled with delicious food and a fabulous celebration. And that's exactly what they got. I mean, like all weddings, there were a few curve balls with some wonky family dynamics strewn in the mix, and work stressors (um, and not to mention the four stitches the bride got above her eye a few days ahead of the wedding which slowly became more and more black and blue), but shit happens and in the grand scheme of things, they handled everything well. They handled everything well and in stride because it was never really about the wedding and the "big day". It was always about the marriage, and their life together following the event.

Bridey, the reason why I'm telling you about this experience is twofold. First of all, I'm obsessed with perspective. I'm in love with perspective. I'm married to perspective (couldn't help it!). And this B+G owned the shit out of their perspective. They are in love and want to be together through the good, bad and everything in between. And secondly, every.single.person involved in creating a kickass day for them was simultaneously rooting for them. There was nothing that we couldn't or didn't want to do for them because they were so lovely and special. And as a wedding vendor, you hold on to that feeling and you run with it! But, more than anything else? You give. And you give a lot. Because it becomes more than just "a job". It becomes magical.