Reception Activities

We had a great question come in from one of ours brides this week and I think it is important for others to know the advice I gave her! Even if your venue does allow music and dancing, it is always fun to have activities for those who may not like to dance!
 
First, there are many guest book style activities that are not only fun for your guests, but are almost like a fun gift for you to look at and keep after the wedding. Yes, I did a traditional guest book at my wedding but in
addition, I chose another "guest book" activity to give my guests something else to do!

Have guests write letters to you and put them in the bottles which will correspond to an anniversary year. The two of you get to look forward to opening them on each anniversary!

Have guests write letters to you and put them in the bottles which will correspond to an anniversary year. The two of you get to look forward to opening them on each anniversary!

Mad libs are always a fun time for guests! And even more fun for you to take with you and read on your honeymoon!

Mad libs are always a fun time for guests! And even more fun for you to take with you and read on your honeymoon!

Guest can write a note to you on a pre-made quilt or quilt squares and you can put it together after the wedding! Something to snuggle up with in your living room for years to come!

Guest can write a note to you on a pre-made quilt or quilt squares and you can put it together after the wedding! Something to snuggle up with in your living room for years to come!

Who said what? After everyone completes it, read the answers out loud to see who got the most right!

Who said what? After everyone completes it, read the answers out loud to see who got the most right!

This one is for my brides who love to play games! And not games with guys...board games of course!! Guests write letters on Jenga logs and you can read the letter as you play with your new husband!

This one is for my brides who love to play games! And not games with guys...board games of course!! Guests write letters on Jenga logs and you can read the letter as you play with your new husband!

Bucket list idea for the bride and grooms! Where should we travel? What should we do? These are activities you can continue doing for the rest of your lives together :)

Bucket list idea for the bride and grooms! Where should we travel? What should we do? These are activities you can continue doing for the rest of your lives together :)

Words of wisdom for the bride and groom! There are many guests at your wedding who have a lot of marriage experience, so listen to their advice for a wonderful marriage!

Words of wisdom for the bride and groom! There are many guests at your wedding who have a lot of marriage experience, so listen to their advice for a wonderful marriage!

I think it is also important to have something for the kids to do! Although they may be able to take part in some of the activities we mention today, for those very young kids who you don't want to be running around and screaming and crying, give them a simple activity to do that will keep them busy! Remember, those kids are your guests too so you want them to have a good time just like everyone else :)

I think it is also important to have something for the kids to do! Although they may be able to take part in some of the activities we mention today, for those very young kids who you don't want to be running around and screaming and crying, give them a simple activity to do that will keep them busy! Remember, those kids are your guests too so you want them to have a good time just like everyone else :)

SWEETS!! We know that we all LOVE sweets so why not fulfill that sweet tooth for your guests and give them something fun to do! The great thing about these ideas is that they can double as your guest favors! For our wedding, we did the s'more bar and it was definitely the hit of the night! We included a small box on each setting with enough materials to make two s'mores each. Then had the burners on a separate table along with wooden sticks so they could make them! If you need help with a DIY s'more bar, contact me and I can help you out of just ship you the materials I used!!

SWEETS!! We know that we all LOVE sweets so why not fulfill that sweet tooth for your guests and give them something fun to do! The great thing about these ideas is that they can double as your guest favors! For our wedding, we did the s'more bar and it was definitely the hit of the night! We included a small box on each
setting with enough materials to make two s'mores each. Then had the burners on a separate table along with wooden sticks so they could make them! If you need help with a DIY s'more bar, contact me and I can help you out of just ship you the materials I used!!

The next idea is your photobooth and as you can see, you don't necessarily need to rent a booth for it to work! There are so many types of "photobooths" you can do on your own to keep the fun and save some money!

The next idea is your photobooth and as you can see, you don't necessarily need to rent a booth for it to work! There are so many types of "photobooths" you can do on your own to keep the fun and save some money!

And for all of those rustic weddings, these games are so much fun and the kids can play too!!

And for all of those rustic weddings, these games are so much fun and the kids can play too!!

Choosing Your Videographer 11/08/2013 0 Comments   Today we are going to go over questions you need to ask when choosing a videographer! Now, the most important thing is to look at their past work!! Do you like what you see? Do you only like one video you saw? Viewing the work they have done in the past will quickly and easily help you determine whether or not this is someone you would like to hire...of course, price plays a role too :)   So here are the questions you will need to ask to determine 1) if you are getting a quote for everything you are going to want and need and 2) if this is the right videographer for you! What is the length of the edit? A company many include different lengths at different price levels so keep this in mind! An average, a highlight video for a wedding is 10-12 minutes and some go up to 15-20 minutes.   What is your turnaround time?  Every bride wants to post her video on Facebook the day she gets back from her honeymoon! I know I did :) So make sure you ask how long it will take to make the edit! Generally, it will range from 2 weeks to a month after the wedding.   How many hours are included? This will just ensure that you get everything fit into their schedule from getting ready to cake cutting and dancing at the end of the night! Will I get to choose my music? They have a TON of experience in editing these videos so make sure you ask for suggestions as well and look at past videos to see what you like! Just because you love a song, doesn't mean it will go well with your video and capture your day perfectly! Remember, they are the experts so ask for their advice before making any final decisions!   If worse comes to worse, ASK FOR THEIR PAST WORK! If you like what you see, typically you are going to love your end result! And here is my wedding video by AfterDark Media :) Add Comment   The Dreaded Guest List 11/08/2013 0 Comments   Here we go...that dreaded word..."guest list." You most likely cringed just thinking about reading today's post, and you are not alone. Hands down, this was the most stressful part of planning my wedding and is generally the main cause of stress for my brides!'   If you have already done some research on venues and what the cost is going to be per person, then I am sure you are stressing right about now. And if you have not, I would HIGHLY recommend doing some research in your area so you know exactly what it is going to cost! And believe it or not, just 10 guests can be a difference of a couple of thousands of dollars! YES, you read it right...a couple thousand dollars! So every guest counts toward that overall budget and every guest you eliminate allows you to spend somewhere else OR save altogether! Let's do some quick math so you know where I am coming from:   $50 x 100 guests = $5,000 x 8% tax = $5,400 x 20% service charge = $6,480 $50 x 110 guests = $5,500 x 8% tax = $5,940 x 20% service charge = $7,128 $50 x 125 guests = $6,250 x 8% tax = $6,750 x 20% service charge = $8,100 $50 x 150 guests = $7,500 x 8% tax = $8,100 x 20% service charge = $9,720   As you can see, just 15 to 20 guests makes a HUGE difference in price! And if the cost per person is more, then the difference will be significantly greater! Now that you understand that each guest will greatly affect your overall cost, here are some tips to eliminating the guests that you may not necessarily need to invite!   1. Has your fiancé ever met this person? This is one that did come up a lot while planning my own wedding. I am sure you have friends from high school that were your "best" friends and as you went away to college or moved into the "real world," you began to lose touch. Although you used to talk every couple of weeks, it has been a couple of months since you last spoke and really all you exchanged was "How are things?" "Great, and you." If your fiancé has never met this friend of yours, it is generally a good rule of thumb that you do not need to send them an invite.   Of course, there are going to be exceptions to this rule. You live in  California and your friend lives in New York? Clearly this may be an exception to the rule. You live in Newport Beach and your friend lives in Huntington Beach? Clearly, you aren't that close if you and your fiancé have dated for three years and he has never met her!   2. How many kids are we talking about?   Most of the time there will be a discounted price for kids in the range of 2-10. if they are going to be eating a kid's meal. And generally, children up to 2 or 3 years of age are going to be free. That is, if they will not be needing a kid's meal. While these prices are usually significantly discounted, it all adds up!   $25 x 10 kids = $250...which is the same as 5 adult meals! So at this point, you need to take a look at how many kids you currently have listed, and weigh your options on whether or not you would prefer to replace them with "old" friends or just save a couple hundred dollars altogether!   As a rule of thumb, I would either invite no kids, all kids, just family kids, or just the ring bearer and flower girl. While you can pick and choose which kids you want there, that is where people tend to try and start drama...which we don't want!   And if kids aren't invited altogether, I would recommend hiring a babysitter on site or at a designated home nearby. Of course this is not your duty, but is definitely a nice courtesy if it is going to be worth the money!     3. Would they invite you to their wedding? When thinking about relatives, it sometimes gets tricky because of second cousins and third cousins, etc. So think about this - has anyone been married yet? Did they invite you to their wedding? If not, then this is an easy way to take them off of your list and surely no feelings will be hurt. Did they host a family event and not invite you? If so, then this generally shows that if and when they get married, you will not be on the invite list. Although this can be applied to friends as well, it is typically a rule to use when discussing your extended family. 4. Single or married? If one of your friends is married, you absolutely need to invite their spouse to the wedding (unless, of course, there are crazy circumstances with which you can determine). If someone is engaged, then I would definitely invite their fiancé. Now, if you have friends who are not in relationships or just started dating, then it is absolutely not necessary to allow them to bring a guest. Think about it - you could be almost doubling your guest list if you allow everyone to bring a date aka doubling the price of your wedding! And this is not necessary.   How do you tell them that they are not allowed to bring a date? Easy!   Wording on your RSVP catd: "We have reserved ___ seats in your honor."     - If you have a friend who is engaged, you write  a "2" on that line     - If no date is allowed, you write a "1" on that line     - If you aren't inviting the kids then you write  a "2" on that line     - If you are inviting the three kids then you write a "5" on that line.   Easy peasy! 5. Co-worker or friend? This is one that will easily cut a significant number of guests down! Yes, you need to separate work from play. While you may be close with some people in the office, if you don't hang out on a usual basis or you wouldn't or haven't been to dinner with this co-worker, then an invite is not needed. All of your co-workers are going to understand that the wedding is for family and closest friends!   6. Have a small intimate wedding for very close family and friends? This is one way to truly cut your guests list down to almost nothing...well, depending on the size of your family. If you make everyone aware that your wedding is going to be small and intimate, then no one will be upset that they haven't received an invite. Just make sure the wedding is actually going to be "small and intimate" before spreading that word :)       BONUS TIP: Live-streaming is a cost-effective way to not only cutting down your guest list and saving money, but saving your out-of-town guests money too! They can enjoy the special moments throughout the day in the comfort of their home!   If all else fails, just remember that this is YOUR wedding and you are in charge of your budget If you are willing to go over budget, then invite everyone you know but for most of us, that is not really an option. If a friend or co-worker gets upset with you for not inviting them or not allowing them to bring a date or their children, a simple reminder that you are trying to stay within budget will suffice...and if they are still mad, then oh well. On your big day, that will be the very least of your worries! Add Comment   Reception Activities 11/08/2013 0 Comments   We had a great question come in from one of ours brides this week and I think it is important for others to know the advice I gave her! Even if your venue does allow music and dancing, it is always fun to have activities for those who may not like to dance!   First, there are many guest book style activities that are not only fun for your guests, but are almost like a fun gift for you to look at and keep after the wedding. Yes, I did a traditional guest book at my wedding but in addition, I chose another "guest book" activity to give my guests something else to do! Have guests write letters to you and put them in the bottles which will correspond to an anniversary year. The two of you get to look forward to opening them on each anniversary! Mad libs are always a fun time for guests!  And even more fun for you to take with  you and read on your honeymoon! Guest can write a note to you on a pre-made quilt or quilt squares and you can put it together after the wedding! Something to snuggle up with in your living room for years to come! Who said what? After everyone completes it, read the answers out loud to see who got the most right! This one is for my brides who love to play games! And not games with guys...board games of course!! Guests write letters on Jenga logs and you can read the letter as you play with your new husband! Bucket list idea for the bride and grooms! Where should we travel? What should we do? These are activities you can continue doing for the rest of your lives together :) Words of wisdom for the bride and groom! There are many guests at your wedding who have a lot of marriage experience, so listen to their advice for a wonderful marriage! I think it is also important to have something for the kids to do! Although they may be able to take part in some of the activities we mention today, for those very young kids who you don't want to be running around and screaming and crying, give them a simple activity to do that will keep them busy! Remember, those kids are your guests too so you want them to have a good time just like everyone else :)   SWEETS!! We know that we all LOVE sweets so why not fulfill that sweet tooth for your guests and give them something fun to do! The great thing about these ideas is that they can double as your guest favors! For our wedding, we did the s'more bar and it was definitely the hit of the night! We included a small box on each setting with enough materials to make two s'mores each. Then had the burners on a separate table along with wooden sticks so they could make them! If you need help with a DIY s'more bar, contact me and I can help you out of just ship you the materials I used!!           The next idea is your photobooth and as you can see, you don't necessarily need to rent a booth for it to work! There are so many types of "photobooths" you can do on your own to keep the fun and save some money!           And for all of those rustic weddings, these games are so much fun and the kids can play too!!         This is one of my favorites and although the guests aren't actually participating, this seems to be the hit of the wedding every time I have seen in done! How it works is that the bride and the groom each hold a bride shoe and a groom shoe. The DJ or MC then call out "what if" statements about the bride and groom.

Choosing Your Videographer

11/08/2013

0 Comments

 

Today we are going to go over questions you need to ask when choosing a videographer! Now, the most important thing is to look at their past work!! Do you like what you see? Do you only like one video you saw? Viewing the work they have done in the past will quickly and easily help you determine whether or not this is someone you would like to hire...of course, price plays a role too :)
 
So here are the questions you will need to ask to determine
1) if you are getting a quote for everything you are going to want and need and
2) if this is the right videographer for you!


What is the length of the edit?
A company many include different lengths at different price levels so keep this in mind! An average, a highlight video for a wedding is 10-12 minutes and some go up to 15-20 minutes.
 
What is your turnaround time? 
Every bride wants to post her video on Facebook the day she gets back from her honeymoon! I know I did :) So make sure you ask how long it will take to make the edit! Generally, it will range from 2 weeks to a month
after the wedding.
 
How many hours are included?
This will just ensure that you get everything fit into their schedule from getting ready to cake cutting and dancing at the end of the night!

Will I get to choose my music?
They have a TON of experience in editing these videos so make sure you ask for suggestions as well and look at past videos to see what you like! Just because you love a song, doesn't mean it will go well with your video and capture your day perfectly! Remember, they are the experts so ask for their advice before making any final decisions!
 
If worse comes to worse, ASK FOR THEIR PAST WORK! If you like what you see, typically you are going to love your end result!

And here is my wedding video by AfterDark Media :)

Add Comment

 

The Dreaded Guest List

11/08/2013

0 Comments

 

Here we go...that dreaded word..."guest list." You most likely cringed just thinking about reading today's post, and you are not alone. Hands down, this was the most stressful part of planning my wedding and is generally
the main cause of stress for my brides!'
 
If you have already done some research on venues and what the cost is going to be per person, then I am sure you are stressing right about now. And if you have not, I would HIGHLY recommend doing some research in your area so you know exactly what it is going to cost! And believe it or not, just 10 guests can be a difference of a couple of thousands of dollars! YES, you read it right...a couple thousand dollars! So every guest counts toward that overall budget and every guest you eliminate allows you to spend somewhere else OR save altogether!

Let's do some quick math so you know where I am coming from:

 




$50 x 100 guests = $5,000 x 8% tax = $5,400 x 20% service charge = $6,480
$50 x 110 guests = $5,500 x 8% tax = $5,940 x 20% service charge = $7,128
$50 x 125 guests = $6,250 x 8% tax = $6,750 x 20% service charge = $8,100
$50 x 150 guests = $7,500 x 8% tax = $8,100 x 20% service charge = $9,720
 

As you can see, just 15 to 20 guests makes a HUGE difference in price! And if the cost per person is more, then the difference will be significantly greater! Now that you understand that each guest will greatly affect your overall cost, here are some tips to eliminating the guests that you may not necessarily need to invite!
 
1. Has your fiancé ever met this person?

This is one that did come up a lot while planning my own wedding. I am sure you have friends from high school that were your "best" friends and as you went away to college or moved into the "real world," you
began to lose touch. Although you used to talk every couple of weeks, it has been a couple of months since you last spoke and really all you exchanged was "How are things?" "Great, and you." If your fiancé has never met this friend of yours, it is generally a good rule of thumb that you do not need to send them an invite.

 

Of course, there are going to be exceptions to this rule. You live in  California and your friend lives in New York? Clearly this may be an exception to the rule. You live in Newport Beach and your friend lives in
Huntington Beach? Clearly, you aren't that close if you and your fiancé have dated for three years and he has never met her!

 
2. How many kids are we talking about?
 
Most of the time there will be a discounted price for kids in the range of 2-10. if they are going to be eating a kid's meal. And generally, children up to 2 or 3 years of age are going to be free. That is, if they will not be needing a kid's meal. While these prices are usually significantly discounted, it all adds up!
 
$25 x 10 kids = $250...which is the same as 5 adult meals!

So at this point, you need to take a look at how many kids you currently have listed, and weigh your options on whether or not you would prefer to replace them with "old" friends or just save a couple hundred dollars
altogether!

 

As a rule of thumb, I would either invite no kids, all kids, just family kids, or just the ring bearer and flower girl. While you can pick and choose which kids you want there, that is where people tend to try and start
drama...which we don't want!
 
And if kids aren't invited altogether, I would recommend hiring a babysitter on site or at a designated home nearby. Of course this is not your duty, but is definitely a nice courtesy if it is going to be worth the money!
 
 
3. Would they invite you to their wedding?

When thinking about relatives, it sometimes gets tricky because of second cousins and third cousins, etc. So think about this - has anyone been married yet? Did they invite you to their wedding? If not, then this is an easy way to take them off of your list and surely no feelings will be hurt. Did they host a family event and not invite you? If so, then this generally shows that if and when they get married, you will not be on the invite list. Although this can be applied to friends as well, it is typically a rule to use when discussing your extended family.


4. Single or married?

If one of your friends is married, you absolutely need to invite their spouse to the wedding (unless, of course, there are crazy circumstances with which you can determine). If someone is engaged, then I would definitely invite their fiancé. Now, if you have friends who are not in relationships or just started dating, then it is absolutely not necessary to allow them to bring a guest. Think about it - you could be almost doubling your
guest list if you allow everyone to bring a date aka doubling the price of your wedding! And this is not necessary.
 
How do you tell them that they are not allowed to bring a date? Easy!
 
Wording on your RSVP catd: "We have reserved ___ seats in your honor."
    - If you have a friend who is engaged, you write  a "2" on that line
    - If no date is allowed, you write a "1" on that line
    - If you aren't inviting the kids then you write  a "2" on that line
    - If you are inviting the three kids then you write a "5" on that line.
 
Easy peasy!


5. Co-worker or friend?

This is one that will easily cut a significant number of guests down! Yes, you need to separate work from play. While you may be close with some people in the office, if you don't hang out on a usual basis or you wouldn't or haven't been to dinner with this co-worker, then an invite is not needed. All of your co-workers are going to understand that the wedding is for family and closest friends!

 

6. Have a small intimate wedding for very close family and friends?

This is one way to truly cut your guests list down to almost nothing...well, depending on the size of your family. If you make everyone aware that your wedding is going to be small and intimate, then no one will be upset that they haven't received an invite. Just make sure the wedding is actually going to be "small and intimate" before spreading that word :)

 

 

 

BONUS TIP: Live-streaming is a cost-effective way to not only cutting down your guest list and saving money, but saving your out-of-town guests money too! They can enjoy the special moments throughout the day in the
comfort of their home!

 

If all else fails, just remember that this is YOUR wedding and you are in charge of your budget If you are willing to go over budget, then invite everyone you know but for most of us, that is not really an option. If a friend or co-worker gets upset with you for not inviting them or not allowing them to bring a date or their children, a simple reminder that you are trying to stay within budget will suffice...and if they are still mad, then oh well. On your big day, that will be the very least of your worries!

Add Comment

 

Reception Activities

11/08/2013

0 Comments

 

We had a great question come in from one of ours brides this week and I think it is important for others to know the advice I gave her! Even if your venue does allow music and dancing, it is always fun to have activities for those who may not like to dance!
 
First, there are many guest book style activities that are not only fun for your guests, but are almost like a fun gift for you to look at and keep after the wedding. Yes, I did a traditional guest book at my wedding but in
addition, I chose another "guest book" activity to give my guests something else to do!




Have guests write letters to you and put them in the bottles which will correspond to an anniversary year. The two of you get to look forward to opening them on each anniversary!





Mad libs are always a fun time for guests! 
And even more fun for you to take with
 you and read on your honeymoon!




Guest can write a note to you on a pre-made quilt or quilt squares and you can put it together after the wedding! Something to snuggle up with in your living room for years to come!





Who said what? After everyone completes it,
read the answers out loud to see who got the most right!





This one is for my brides who love to play games! And not games with guys...board games of course!! Guests write letters on Jenga logs and you can read the letter as you play with your new husband!



Bucket list idea for the bride and grooms!
Where should we travel? What should we do?
These are activities you can continue doing for the
rest of your lives together :)



Words of wisdom for the bride and groom!
There are many guests at your wedding who have a lot of marriage experience, so listen to their advice for a wonderful marriage!

I think it is also important to have something for the kids to do! Although they may be able to take part in some of the activities we mention today, for those very young kids who you don't want to be running around and screaming and crying, give them a simple activity to do that will keep them busy! Remember, those kids are your guests too so you want them to have a good time just like everyone else :)

 

SWEETS!! We know that we all LOVE sweets so why not fulfill that sweet tooth for your guests and give them something fun to do! The great thing about these ideas is that they can double as your guest favors! For our wedding, we did the s'more bar and it was definitely the hit of the night! We included a small box on each
setting with enough materials to make two s'mores each. Then had the burners on a separate table along with wooden sticks so they could make them! If you need help with a DIY s'more bar, contact me and I can help you out of just ship you the materials I used!!

 

 

 

 

 

The next idea is your photobooth and as you can see, you don't necessarily need to rent a booth for it to work! There are so many types of "photobooths" you can do on your own to keep the fun and save some money!

 

 

 

 

 

And for all of those rustic weddings, these games are so much fun and the kids can play too!!

 

 

 

 

This is one of my favorites and although the guests aren't actually participating, this seems to be the hit of the wedding every time I have seen in done! How it works is that the bride and the groom each hold a bride shoe and a groom shoe. The DJ or MC then call out "what if" statements about the bride and groom.

When you were dating, who made the first move?
Who is the biggest flirt?
Who is the romantic?
Who is the better kisser?
Who is more stubborn?
Who is always right?
Who always has the final say?
Who is the better dancer?
Whose duty is it to clean the toilet?

There are so many fun questions you can ask and guests just get a kick out of this because the bride and groom are back to back and can't see who is answering what! Have some fun with this one :)

 

We could go on and on all day about fun activities for the wedding day and there are so many fun things you can do to entertain your guests! Like I always say, just make it your own! Do the activities that will make guests say "This is totally Frank and Jenn!" It is your wedding and should reflect the two of you and your amazing personalities. If you need some more ideas, I would highly recommend looking on Pinterest or the following site:

http://weddingsandromance.com/weddings/wedding-reception-games-and-wedding-activities/