It's that time of month! Here's You Ask, We Answer for October!
EMAIL - TOAST TIME!
My best friend called me yesterday and asked if i could give a toast/speech during their welcome drinks next Friday night, her fiancé also has his best friend giving one the same night.
What I'm finding hard is that when I sit down and write it out, everything sounds sooooo cheesy. I’m also worried that i’m focusing too much on our friendship.
We do have a very special, unique friendship, and I have a ton of stories I can share.
I don't want to make the toast too much about me, or just me and her. I’m worried that it will come off like I’m “showing off” how close we are. Is this a dumb thing to worry about?
You can do this. Not as much pressure as the wedding day toasts. I think you can absolutely focus on your relationship with the bride - but just always circle back to how the qualities you are illustrating in whatever stories you share are qualities that her fiancé is going to benefit from. She's your best friend for the same reasons that he fell in love with her, in short. She's adjective, adjective and adjective. You know this because of anecdote, anecdote, anecdote. And he completes her in this way, this way and this way. And he's lucky to have her because this, this and this. Basically.
You were asked by her to give a toast. The toast will honor her.
Remember - this is going to be 5-6 minutes. That's it. You have hours of things to say about her...distill it to 5 minutes. When I was drafting my bf's toast, I started with a list (on my phone) of all the things I love about her. Then I fleshed out some of those things with stories and anecdotes. And then I read that shit out loud in front of a mirror. Remember - you don't have to be a stand up comedienne, or a one-woman show. A perfect toast - in my opinion (and I've seen A LOT) - is touching and funny (but not necessarily LOL funny) and comes from the heart. You are 'publicly' professing your love for your friend. That's the point. People want to hear why you specifically think she is so awesome. You don't have to tell all the funny or touching stories - but list them out and that will help you decide which ones best illustrate your point that this guy is getting one hell of a lady. And that you love her and you wish them the very best as they embark on this journey. You believe in marriage. You believe in them. And CHEERS.
EMAIL - The Vegan Percentage
We’ve picked a caterer, a local upscale Mexican fusion type place. I am vegan and have been for about 9 years, and we specifically picked this place because they have really yummy vegan options. However, I always knew between my fiancé’s family and my family, we’d basically have to serve some meat too. So I was fine with that and made a menu that was about 50/50 vegan/non-vegan.
My dad is paying for the catering, and keeps offering to pay more and more to add on more meat dishes that we really don’t need, and will cause excess food. This upsets me because his proposed new menu with his additions isn’t even 1/3 vegan, and it’s way too much food that neither my fiancé nor I will even try.
I know he’s paying, and I’m trying to be understanding and not a bridezilla, but at the same time.... it makes me sad that ANY animals have to die for my wedding. I don’t want to add on MORE deaths. And, I feel like if we’re going to spend more and add more... it would be nice if it was something I could actually enjoy as well.
When I try to gently say this to him, he gets annoyed and is like “well I want to enjoy it too” and I’m like.... anyone can eat delicious vegan food. Meat options are the limiting ones. I just don’t know if I’m being awful or what to say to him.
Any advice would be so appreciated, because you ladies often have creative answers I’d never think of!
Totally get the dilemma here...
Here's what I think. People that aren't vegans (like me) think that all vegan food sucks (guilty). Admittedly, I am wrong about this! I have been pleasantly surprised by vegan food and I've done a fair share of vegan weddings! I think you do need to consider your dad's opinion bc he is paying for it. BUT - put your foot down about the options and quantities...propose going half and half with the main course entrees (it's a fair proposal - he's paying, but it's YOUR wedding - so go with your idea: 50/50% on the dinner). And of the 50% non-vegan, some of that can def be non-meat. Reducing the kill quota that is understandably making you uncomfortable. If you are having apps, those can all be vegan except one - and let your dad pick whatever he likes for the one meat option. And the wedding cake or desserts can be totally vegan! He likely won't even be able to tell the difference with those anyway.
Thank your dad. Tell him you love and appreciate him and you can't wait to celebrate your wedding with him. But remind him that this is just one meal for him...and for you, it's a really important celebration that should speak to the priorities and values that you and your fiancé hold dear! Your dad can stop at McDonalds on his way home if he wants to - it's not something that should be made into a big deal. Promise him that he'll get enough to eat and that the food isn't really the main point of the day anyway.
You can do this!
EMAIL 3 THOUGHTFUL HIRING
I’m up to #153 about diversity and I had a question.
I live in the heartland, conservative bible belt, and all that "fun" stuff. I grew up near the capitol of the state in a VERY good suburb area with parents that reinforced what my (our) generation of "treat others the way you want to be treated" were taught. My area isn't SUPER diverse but I was such a shy nerdy made fun of kid that I made friends with anyone who would let me :)
My question is around navigating beliefs and vendors and I hadn't really thought about it before. I have decided my caterer must have washable dishes or compostable flatware available I'm not contributing that much garbage bc I'm getting married. What I hadn't considered is whether or not it matters if I hire vendors who don't believe what I do and how can I approach finding out?
I don't want to support hateful awfulness that I don't agree with by hiring someone who believes that but "Do you service clients of color and LGBTQ?" isn't really on any of the interview checklists in the planners and guides out there.
I want to be environmentally conscious and I want to not find out when it's too late that I've hired someone I would barely be able to associate with and not be mad all the time.
I too am an elder millennial - what a club, huh? Also, I was raised mostly in North Texas and it's super conservative for the most part there too.
I love that you are thinking about these things, even though they don't really affect you - so to speak. You have an open mind and heart and I can tell that you want to make deliberate, conscientious choices...and I love that. Good for you!
I think as far as the venue goes- if you got a good impression and energy from the venue owner/manager....just take it and don't question things too much. You already signed and things are already in motion. We can't know that every person that we work with or that we hire thinks about things the same as we do - or hold the same values as we do. You aren't ignoring any red flags...and that's a good thing moving forward. If she told you they don't do gay weddings there, that's another story, because she made it clear to you.
For vendors you haven't hired though, I think asking them if they work with diverse clients and other vendors is fair! Sure, you don't see it on the 'questions to ask your florist' lists...but that doesn't mean you shouldn't ask. It's important to you. Worst thing they could say is, "No." And then you can move on and find someone else to hire. Just ask, Chelsea. I bet once you do, it'll be a lot easier to just keep asking. And my bet is, you'll get more "sure, we are open to serving anyone!" then you will "No, we don't believe in that". It's becoming bad business, slowly but surely, even in the heartland.
I hope this helps! I really appreciate your thoughtfulness here!
EMAIL 4 (From the FB Group) - Dessert Ticket Conundrum
Hey all! I am looking for some advice on a very specific question!
In addition to cupcakes, we are doing an ice cream sundae bar at our wedding, this will be an extra cost of $5 per person. Instead of charge for every single person (we have vegans, people who dont like ice cream, it will be october in MN and possibly cold, etc). Our caterer/venue is willing to do a ticket system in order to save money on the people who do not want ice cream.
We will have escort cards that I could put a stamp on or ticket with.
What we need to figure out is how to ask people, is it tacky to put it on our invitations and have people check if they want the ice cream? Will people want ice cream and cupcakes? Is that too much dessert? Any suggestions are welcome!! Thanks in advance!
From another group member: Idea 1: Can you devise a system with the caterer where the guest hands in their escort card to get ice cream? I am assuming that there is a server in this scenario and that it's not self serve. Then you just get charged for the number of escort cards turned in. Have the DJ explain this at the cake cutting and put signage at the ice cream bar that describes it. You can make it cute, but just get the details across as many ways as you can!
Idea 2: When I have ordered food for events that I think not everyone will partake in, I have guaranteed half the total number of people. Will the caterer let you do something like that? It can be any number you feel comfortable with. The only issue is that then they only bring the ice cream for the guaranteed number. When it's gone, it's gone. I find that caterers tend have a generous idea of portion size on buffet/bar style food because people sometimes go back for seconds or certain people like slightly larger portions. But it's definitely something to think about!
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