- 5 years ago
It’s important to me to establish a good working relationship with my daughter’s future in-laws, whom I have met twice but do not know well. My future son-in-law has kept me in the loop throughout his ring shopping process, since he used our family jeweler and had a stone from my mother’s ring included in my daughter’s engagement ring. He came up with a very creative idea for his proposal and enlisted my help to get my daughter to agree to go on a trip to the university where they met next weekend. He has put a lot of thought into this, and is taking her to a spot where they used to picnic and study together while they were dating, rather than the spot where everyone else gets engaged on their campus.
He has also made reservations for a nice lunch afterward, and has invited me and his parents to be waiting there when they arrive, as a surprise family engagement celebration. My first concern: What is expected from me on this occasion? Should I bring flowers for my daughter, or a card for the couple? Is this traditionally a gift-giving occasion? It is very important to me to do whatever is considered socially correct in this instance, but I have no idea what it is. I want to demonstrate my support for them and my pleasure that he will soon be part of our family, along with my desire to work cooperatively with his family to plan the wedding.
Also, it is likely that we will end up waiting at the restaurant before the happy couple arrives, as we are driving several hours from two different directions and don’t know exactly what time the proposal will be accomplished, so we will err on the early side. Is this an appropriate time to broach the subject of setting a date, starting guest lists, and budgeting for the wedding?
I am already stressing about these items. As a single mom working two jobs, I will not be able to provide the full cost of the wedding they want, especially since the groom has a very large family who will need to be included (about 30 on our side, compared to about 150 on theirs.) The groom has mentioned that he expects his parents to cover a portion of the expenses, since their guest list will be so much larger than ours. Thanks to the Bee, I’ve been doing my homework for almost a year, and have a pretty good idea about the budget required to have a basic wedding in this area.
We live about five hours apart and the wedding will be in my hometown where the bride and groom live. This may be the only time I see his parents in person before the wedding, unless their family hosts a shower. If it would be impolite to begin discussing wedding details before the couple arrives, please stop me from embarrassing myself! I know that once the kids arrive, all talk should be about how happy I am for them, how lovely her ring is, etc. and not about the business of planning a wedding. I’m just concerned we won’t have many opportunities to work together on these items, due to my work schedule and the distance between us.
Any other tips on things your mothers did (or should have done) to make your engagement a special memory for you would be greatly appreciated. My daughter has waited almost four years for this special day to come, and I want it to be something she always remembers with joy. Thanks for any stories or advice you can share!