Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Frugal Friday

Today, I am especially concerned of my funds, due to a lovely collision I had on Thursday that not only damaged my car (damage is a sugar coat) but also ruined my laptop.

Sadly, that shadow is not me keeping my laptop warm with blanket. That is my screen.

That normally would be a huge pocket dent. Thankfully, it is only a $80 screen repair. 

But now, we shall talk about the costs of catering.

Sadly, one of my favorite venues, The Tippecanoe Place, is estimated with catering to be $45-$55 a person. Assuming the average family is 5 people, and maybe 3 families per side, plus maybe a 6 people wedding party (which by the way, including you and your spouse, would be about 40 people), that could up to $1,900. That's almost a bare minimum guest list. 

Photo Credit: Google

Ouch. Nope.

Many venues only will allow you to reserve if you have their catering, so unfortunately you are promised to spend a fortune. Provided you can cater however you want, this is what you can do instead to avoid spending a fortune.

1.) Potluck! Have everyone bring a dish. If you're lucky, they'll ask you what you like and they will bring it. If you're handy with computers, you can do a "potluck registry" so there is no over abundance of those meatballs that you'll be eating for a month.

2.) Do it yourself... or you know, have mom help.

3.) Finger foods, provided you have the wedding and reception either before or after normal eating time. Notify your guests if you do not intend to provide a full meal. If they care about you, they will understand.

4.) Ditch the bar... it's not worth it. People act like stupid drunks, and having an open bar will put a serious damper on your beach honeymoon beverage fund. Sober up for a good time. If you're worried about the toast, try a family friendly sparkling grape juice. 

5.) No food. The same with finger foods, notify your guests that you do not intend to have a meal. It's almost a guarantee that there will be cake involved, and 2 liter soda is fairly inexpensive. Even better, decorate the soda bottle and have one or two at each table as a centerpiece. Simplistic, yet functional!

Photo Credit: Pinterest

6.) Pizza anyone? Yes, believe it or not, pizza is becoming more and more acceptable as wedding food. But be sure you put a limit on slices until everyone gets a slice or two.

Photo Credit: Google

As always with any planning, stick to a budget. Thankfully more and more people are ditching the idea of traditional expensive wedding menus and venues (haha, that rhymes) and people are doing fun backyard weddings now more than ever because of the venue and catering dilemma. Hopefully these tips help.

I like the idea of doing maybe cake with a soda bar... What ideas do you have for your wedding?
Did you have success without traditional catering?

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Hello, welcome to Frugal Fridays!


These will be a weekly blog post about saving money on a main item for your wedding, such as decorations. Visit my page every Friday for a new tip or creative outlook on traditional wedding styles that could mean saving big bucks.

Despite the facts that weddings are expensive, and I myself choose not to have one, I still find myself dreaming about "the dress." Not something as big and crazy as the cliche, but hey, a girl can dream.

Image result for big huge dress
Photo Credit: Google

Girls are raised to be princesses, and it's impossible to escape this sort of ideology of the big fluffy dress. Personally, my favorite princess growing up was Ariel from Disney's "The Little Mermaid." It would not be any surprise to you, that this practically pintrest Ariel wedding caused me to squeal with girlish delight at every minuscule (though extremely expensive) detail.

I also dreamed of being a fashion designer before I chose to pursue journalism, but considering that I vary between jeans and dresses every day it would not be a well suited career... pun intended. So as you can see, my dreams revolve around the dress. The very, very expensive dress. To be specific it costs a whopping total of

Which logically could pay for...


Even if walking to the court house, most people wouldn't want to wear jeans on their wedding day. Instead of being sad about the high cost or the impracticality of a huge ball gown, maybe instead consider a cheaper, more common cents (yes, money that you'll have after payday) options

Even options for your wedding party!

1.) Goodwill/Thrift Shopping

2.) Keep it casual

3.) Make your own (this would be a good time to call Grandma and open Pinterest)

4.) Mom's dress

5.) Accessorize

Some other helpful tips are to...

Budget, budget, budget. Find a number, cap it, and do not blow the top. Even making your own dress will be expensive if you are capable of some basic sewing skills. Watch the sales, and don't forget to price compare and shop online.

Check with your wedding party (if you have one).

See if they can pay for their own dress, see if there is a color from last season that is cheaper than a newer, or more expensive color. If going with the casual theme, check end of season sales for dresses at places like Forever 21. Your wedding party, if they really care about you, will probably understand if you cannot afford to dress 6-12 people on your budget. Don't hesitate asking them to carry their own.

Don't forget the guys, as it may come at no surprise, the guy's wardrobe tends to be cheaper. But maybe instead of perfectly matching tuxes from the overpriced shops, they might have their own suits. Again, the casual theme causes wardrobe to become much cheaper. Maybe dark jeans or khakis. Colored shorts and button up shirts are a great option for spring and summer. Stalk those clearance racks.

If the dress isn't your priority spending point, great! Let me know what is on my poll so I can include it in my next Frugal Friday post.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Smart question of the day

Photo credit: google images
For a moment, stop reading and think to yourself...

If me and my partner had an extra $10,000, what could we pay for?

Money is equal to security for some people. While that claim might be a bit extreme, research has already proven lack of money equals increased stress. Sure, times are tough now and again, but this increase in stress due to lack of financial stability has lead to divorce in several cases.

While it is smart to have a weekly grocery budget and discuss with your partner if you think the living room really needs a new TV before Christmas, it is also important to consider any extreme debt you bring into your marriage. 

Of course, student loan debts and car payments are in almost all cases guaranteed. People do, however, actually spend the money it costs to pay for school or a new car on their "big day." Really, on the first day of starting life together, even if college and the car is paid off, there is now a huge hole in the pockets that could be used as a down payment on a house, or a deposit and a few months of rent. 

Really, choosing to not have a traditional wedding ceremony is like giving you and your spouse a head start on financial goals. It is a matter of perspective. It's not extra money, but it is money that should be smartly earned, smartly spent, and smartly saved for when you (and/or someone special) really need it. 

So, if you are considering not having a traditional wedding, what could you use $10,000 dollars for?

Thursday, February 12, 2015

About This Blog Post

As someone has been in a relationship for three years, I am well aware of the endless badgering from the loved ones in my life.

"Where is the ring?"

"So are you guys planning a June wedding?"

"How many grandchildren will I be expecting?"

I'm not even engaged. The fact people hurry to get married is not what bothers me in our hook-up culture and instant gratification mentality.

People seem to be more worried about is the colors for the wedding, how big the ring is, and even other seemingly important things like "the right time." What about financial stability?

People are flawed, but with our instant gratification mentality and hook-up culture, we are so obsessed with having these extravagant materials, and gosh darn it, we want them now!

Most people who have been married at least a decade say that the first year of marriage is the hardest. Starting the marriage without a giant hole of debt will probably ease most of the traditional stress. It may resolve in a few less fights.

With this blog, it will break down the logic of having a wedding and why financially it is probably a poor choice to do the traditional big day. This blog will also offer wedding alternatives, along with advice for planning your version of a big day.

What was the most special wedding you remember, and what do you remember about it? Do you want your day to be like that, and if so, why?