- 10 years ago
- Wedding: December 1969
Oh Virginny!! That sounds like quite the dilemma But, truth is, some compromise needs to be made. How it’s done however, is the hardest part. I suggest you sit down with your fiance and discuss what are 3 most important things to each of you. Don’t think about family and friends, just you two, knowing you have a budget of 15,000. After you two decide how you will compromise between yourselves, make that solid and you two need to get through the planning together.
Some options off the top of my head is to have a nice ceremony at your church and have a fun dance-filled reception in NJ with the bridal party. Then you can have a quiet dinner with his friends and family in Michigan. How, you’d have to factor the costs to have both, but if you two are unwilling to compromise, you should both be willing to accomplish everything together. So you may not get the fancy dinner reception with dancing, but if dancing is priority for you you may have to change your reception venue to a more affordable place. If his parents are willing to help out with a reception in Michigan, they can help pay for the dinner.
Please don’t be stressed. This is supposed to be one of your happiest times with your new fiance, and it’s a test on how well you two can work together. It’s also the first time you two may have to start thinking about each other as priority, versus your family. Before you make any more discussions, I would have a heart to heart conversation with your fiance over a nice home meal and a bottle of wine.
We had a similar dilemna– I’m from OH, DH is from VT (but his family is now scattered) and we live in NJ. Planning a wedding is so much work that (although I offered to plan the wedding in VT), I wanted it to be in NJ or OH, where I knew my parents would really help with the planning. We basically ended up having a destination wedding in OH, with lots of DH’s friends carpooling from GA (where he went to college) and our friends carpooling from NJ.
It seems like you and your family really want the wedding in NJ and he agreed to it at one point and now the main concern is getting his people there. Although MI to NJ is a long drive, it’s not that bad when carpooling (it’s probably 11 or 12 hours) and that could be an affordable option. Additionally, you might be able to make room in your budget to pay for his friends’ hotel rooms for a night to help defray the cost (esp. if they are willing to share).
You could also follow chill’s suggestion to have a second, casual reception (BBQ, etc.) in MI.
It sounds like compromising on this might be a challenge, but as long as you show your FI that you are concerned about his concerns and you want to try to figure them out together (and you bring some thoughtful suggestion to the table) it should work out for the best.
Hi V –
Whew! What a stressed out chica you are – which is completely understandable. As chill suggested, having the main event in Jersey with a secondary, smaller event in MI would be easiest. You will certainly be able to manage both events under $15,000.
However, I think I’m confused. "FI thinks that if the people want to see us married <in Florida>, they can fly down." Well, can’t ppl just fly to Jersey instead of MI?
I’m sorry your FIL (and FI for that matter) aren’t being more understanding about the geographical challenges of planning a modern-day wedding. It’s a no-brainer to have the wedding where most of the ppl reside: Jersey. Back in the day everyone was local, just a few guests came from out of town. Now we have families spread out across the world! For our wedding in PA, we have ppl coming from Germany, CA, CT, TX, VA and hopefully WI and NE. Can you imagine trying to keep everyone happy?
I wish you and your FI the best of luck working together to find a solution. Keep us posted!
Thanks for the wonderful comments, everyone. My fiance and I are still negotiating. We had a heart-to-heart. But the compromising negotiations are still in progress.Â
we have one main ceremony + hotel reception in socal for my side, and we’ll be having a smaller chinese restaurant reception for his side of the family in the bay area. if you aren’t picky for a second venue, and keep it very simple, you may be able to fit in a second reception. ours will be small, no frills, just the basics, probably some months after the main reception so that we can save up for it.
How did we manage to stay calm? Whether or not our guests chose to attend is out of our control – pure and simple, we didn’t let it get to us.
There was however a brief moment where I thought we’d have to print wedding invites in German as well…until my FILs and FI reminded me that everyone in Europe, no matter their mother tongue, is schooled in English from a very young age. Whew!!
I think traditionally, the wedding is to be held in the home city of the bride. That said, it is not a hard and fast rule. I myself am getting married on my fiance’s father’s property out in the country where he grew up.
I know that this may be impossible, but have you considered doing a small wedding with just your immediate family and close friends in Florida and then having larger less formal receptions in both your home cities to celebrate? It would take a bit of time and effort from all those involved but it would certainly appease the families and might end up being more fun.
A friend of mine went this route (got married with nearest and dearest in Hawaii and did home receptions later) and she said it was a blast because she actually got to relax and spend time with people.
Staying calm? Whew… email was great way to keep track of how people will be arriving, if they needed help with travel arrangements, etc. We also had a wedding website with directions to better inform all guests. Then once we sent the invitations, we didn’t care if people declined or accepted. If they were willing to travel, that was wonderful. Some people were honest with us and said they couldn’t afford to attend, and that was okay too. Weddings in general are expensive, so not every guest will be able to attend regardless.
And the saga continues…
We’re having the "equally inconvienent" problem ourselves. I’m from Louisiana, he’s from Virginia. Most of all of our families are scatter all over the world. (Germany, Australia, Horn of Africa)
I want the wedding in Louisiana. He wants it in Ga where we live. That is only convient to us and his immediate family.
We even discussed eloping and throwing a big party later that was a little less formal.
We had to do a lot of compromising and will continue over the next 8 months, but I know it will work out if we keep communication flowing!
Just remember that this is ya’ll’s day and the only people you really have to make happy is the two of you. Others may have thier feelings hurt but you can’t make everyone happy!
Virginny, I’m sorry you’re having problems with your parents. Now it sounds like you needs a heart to heart with your parents! Explain to them that it will be difficult for his family and friends to travel, so having it in florida would be the happiest medium for everyone. Especially since you’re offering to pay for their travel, hopefully your parents will be okay with it.
If they pout and do not come, they’ll regret it for the rest of their lives… But Virginny, it’s about you and your fiance. Your parents will come around.
I really like the idea of two separate events: one in NJ for the wedding (say, church + BBQ) and then one in Michigan for a second reception. That way, it’s "equally convenient" for both parties!
Regarding the BBQ: he may be embarrassed by the idea of a BBQ for his guests and family. I know that as a man, that would be a bit hard for me to accept if it were a cost saving measure (as opposed to, a lifestyle thing – like if I were really into BBQ’s and the outdoors).
But if his guests are mostly going to be at the Michigan dinner (rather than the NJ BBQ), then maybe it’s less of an issue? And with a BBQ, you could pretty easily stay under budget…
Hi Virginny! I think Florida does sound a lot better, compromise-wise. That way EVERYBODY will have to travel to your location instead of say, his family from Michigan, while your family is already at the location. (That way there is no complaining that one side of the family is favored over the other!! Since that is how it seems right now…) Hmm… how many people from Michigan are/would be coming and how many are in Jersey? Say if 15 people from Michigan were coming and 55 were in Jersey, that would make sense. I hope everything works out. Do what would make you and your FI happy, not everyone else! It’s your wedding!
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