As I mentioned earlier in the series, family involvement in the wedding was very important for us. Plus our wedding was so DIY-heavy, it would not have happened without the help of our families. In fact, I may have taken advantage of my in-laws… from storing and hauling all of our wedding supplies, spending HOURS (literally several 12 hour days) making and hot gluing paper flowers, to doing my hair and makeup AND arranging all the flowers…all I can say is they are the best.
We also put our extended family to work. At first I felt bad, but then I was re-assured that they were going to be in town for the wedding anyway, and they didn’t have any plans other than hanging out with each other—so I should give them a task to accomplish together and knock out two birds with one stone! So, we put them to work decorating the venue and prepping ALL of the food for our 250 guests. It was quite the task but they did an excellent job under the direction of our coordinator, Kristy. I did find out later that ironically the cousins who have a fear of raw meat and hate dates ended up being assigned to the bacon wrapped dates, but I suppose that’s what makes for good stories later!
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I think one thing I could have done better throughout the process was being more excited when my family wanted to talk about the wedding. It seemed like I was so stressed that I would either tell them I didn’t want to talk about it, or I would just give very short, snappy responses to their questions, because my mind was already consumed with wedding planning and I didn’t need to think any more about it. I regret that, because I know it was an exciting time for them, and it was something that definitely kept my mom going and gave her something to look forward to. I wish I would have let her be more involved in the planning process; but I think the tasks she helped with– dress shopping and researching flowers were good tasks that she could handle at the time.
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When you have different tastes, it can be hard to invite family involvement. The first time I talked to my sister after getting engaged, I sat her down and explained to her that she could help with the wedding planning process, but she had to realize that we have very different tastes, and I needed her to be mindful of that. For some reason, I was most excited about the center pieces; they were the first thing I started thinking about and really the only detail of the wedding that I was particular about. When my sister added a pin to our shared wedding board of what I would consider really hideous center pieces, I told my decorator to please not pay any attention to those. A few days later my mom sent me the EXACT same photo, and a suggestion that I ask the venue if they provide center pieces. I found it hilarious that my mom and sister had the same taste that was so incredibly different from mine. That’s when I started assigning them different tasks- like booking the dress appointments and researching flower shops.
I know that family involvement will look different for everyone, and I am very lucky to have family members who respected my decisions, opinions, and taste.
Check out the other posts in the 31 days…to the altar series here.