The Great Venue Drama

This past weekend was a whirlwind to say the least. We visited six venues in one day… spread out all over the greater Chicagoland area! As soon as I get my pictures off my digital camera, I promise to post full reviews of each of the finalists.

I won’t give it away just yet… but I think Ryan and I have decided on our reception venue. It wasn’t one of those “omg, this is it” moments like you often hear about. Our decision was based on price, convenience, and logistics mostly.

Now, only 2 days into the big decision, we’re already having venue drama.

First of all, we haven’t booked it yet. Doesn’t seem like a big deal on the surface, except that apparently all the other 2011 brides are way more on top of things than I am, because Saturday evening reception venues are being booked up left and right!

I have one weekend in June which we can’t have the wedding due to a conflict. On top of that, I can’t do any weekends in May because I work in television, and May is a sweeps month! So we are looking at 3 weekends in June. And our future venue only has one of those weekends available.

So why haven’t I booked it yet? Because I’m waiting to hear back from the ceremony site. We’re having the ceremony at my home church. I have called (probably more times than is socially acceptable) and emailed the coordinator at the church asking if that date is available, but she hasn’t responded.

I kind of want to stop and yell, “WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU!?” for making me wait… but I know I’m just being a typical stressed-out bride. I have to keep reminding myself that the world won’t end if we can’t have our wedding in June. So what? We’ll push it back to July. (Gurr… we better not have to push it back to July…)

The next issue we’ve discovered is the cost. Yes, that makes us sound like idiots who didn’t do proper research. But when you’re browsing dozens (ok, hundreds) of potential venues, you tend to do a super quick rough estimate of the cost.

Well, my “super quick rough estimate” for our future venue did not include things like a $4 per person charge for cake, or a $3 per person charge to give them an entrée option. Or… oh, I dunno… our venue’s 200 person minimum. That’s 60 or 70 more people than we planned on inviting. So if we don’t make 60 or 70 new friends in the next 13 months, we have to pay for imaginary friends. Joy!

So add all that up, and you come up with a cost that is 67% of our total budget (instead of the recommended 45%). Eek! Yes, my parents are paying. And yes, my mom says it’s no big deal. But in my eyes, that is a lot of money… and it only means one thing for the year ahead: a lot more DIY projects.

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