Donia & David Part II – The Doing

And now I bring you Part II of Donia’s wedding essay. The one that answers how they managed to feed 300 people on $8,000. So let Donia inspire you to break free, dream big, and DO:

Part II – The Nitty-Gritty and What Really Matters
1. Maintain a healthy and realistic perspective. We had limitations (monetary, time, etc.) – all of which helped design and shape our wedding. Limitations aren’t bad and stressing about it never helps anyone.

2. It never hurts to ask. Enlist your friends, family and loved ones. You won’t be surprised, or maybe you will, that you have gifted, talented, and resourceful people who are eager to show their love and support for you. Our loved ones felt more connected to David and I because they participated in our wedding planning, etc. even if it was a mere word of advise about our wedding. We found our wedding location, photographer, videographer, flowers, invitations, desserts, deejay, reception entertainment (my father and our good friends sang songs to us while everyone ate), set-up crew, and tear-down crew all through our friends and family. We were either given the above mentioned items for free or paid cost and a little extra for our friend’s kindness.

3. Research, research, research. Check, double check, and compare rental company prices, catering, photography, etc. There’s really no excuse to do some basic research with the internet and a cell phone at your fingertips. If you’re reading Meg’s blog, then you must already be a wedding researcher.4. The more energy you put into your wedding, the more rewarding it becomes. The small details you add to your wedding absolutely add value and meaningfulness to your wedding. David and I (along with our friends) did almost everything by ourselves. We did our own invitations; I bought two sample dresses for super inexpensive and combined, cut, and added my own touches to make my dream dress a reality; David and his friends essentially became groundskeepers and made our wedding location accessible and beautiful for our guests; David and I wrote a song that we sang together at our reception; the details really are endless. Preparing for your wedding with your future husband creates a special bond between the two of you too…it’s worth it.

The things that ended up being most important:

David and I wanted to be physically, emotionally, and spiritually present the day of our wedding. So, however cuckoo we were leading up to the wedding, it didn’t matter as long as we were focused and all about love the day of our wedding. We didn’t just want that for ourselves either, we wanted it for every wedding guest. We are so happy we did our best to be present for our wedding day. Creating the ceremony with the man who married us ended up being super special to David and I. The wedding was over so quickly and as David and I drove away, we began recording our conversation about the wedding.We have continued to be happy we took some time to do informal couple’s therapy. It’s pretty great to try to meet regularly with some married couple you look up to and ask a thousand questions about how they’ve made their marriage work. Besides our own beautiful memories, our pictures, wedding video, rings, and wedding garb are the only physical things that remain from our wedding. We are happy to have spent the time and money particularly on our photos and video. It’s a lot, but it’s worth it. Make it your own and don’t buy into the idea that you have to have a wedding that looks like anyone else’s.

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  • wonderfully wise advise. Great to read.

  • Meg

    It's so nice to hear about another couple with 300 guests. I'm trying not to panic. I know it can be done!

  • That’s my wedding…. right down to the mason jars in the trees and not renting a tent. I have 300 guests and a $5,000 budget… its SO nice to see that someone else has done it. Oh yea… and my wedding hasn't happened yet. Its 4/24/10. I'm hoping for no rain and lots of fun! Meg, your blog has been so inspirational to me – I can't even explain it. It’s so nice to be able to read about like-minded people who don't buy into the WIC. Actually, anti-WIC is becoming somewhat of a political conviction for me! lol. Also, I've noticed lately that you've been posting a lot more weddings with brides in big white dresses… I love it! I have a big white dress too, and sometimes feel like I don't fit in anywhere. So… I've rambled enough. Thank you again!!!

  • April

    Really beautiful and wonderful advice.

    I always feel a bit envious when I read of other brides who had a cadre of wonderful, talented and helpful friends to help them with their day. Early in our planning, my fiance and I asked a few people directly to help us, and their method of "assistance" was to direct us to Craigslist, college students or just-starting-out vendors, as opposed to saying, "Sure – what can I do?" Disappointing to say the least! But, we carry on…

    Donia & David were very very fortunate to have the support of their friends and family for what looks and sounds like a breathtakingly beautiful and personal day. Blessings to them!

    p.s. And I would LOVE to eat tacos at a wedding instead of fish & beef! :D

    So it totally bites that I asked my friends

  • April

    …erm… random thought at end of my post. not sure where I was going with that! Sorry…