Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Engaged! Now What?

Welcome all you new Brides to be, I hope this blog proves to be a wonderful source of money and time saving tips, as well as an idea spot for planning your big day.

Here is an inspiration board that would make an amazing Winter Wedding....Enjoy

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Drum Roll Please.........

Sorry for the delay.....I was a tad bit embarrassed to post today's post. I had NO IDEA we had BLOWN our budget so bad. I mean WOOOOOOOOOOOW! I hope D doesn't start reading this blog NOW!

Well Total Budgeted Wedding was $7,500 total spent (winching) $9,378.82

that is $1,878.82 OVER budget, good lord how did that happen? and where was I? LOL

I guess its a good thing we didn't notice until now, and that the Good Lord has blessed us to pull off such an event. Now we can look back and enjoy it though all or amazing pictures!

I hope this blog has helped you see how you can save $$ and pull off an event in a short amount of time. I will continue to blog ALL the helpful tips, and trends I can find. As much as I hate to admit it I am a little wed-obsessed!

Happy Planning!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Odd's and Ends Recap

This will be the last recap and I will work on the FINAL TOTAL for Monday's post. As you saw this week our original budget was $7,500 and I think we stayed really close to that. Here are a few loose ends....

  • Day of Coordinator was our Dear friend and Matchmaker's Wife Lottie Claytor, she handled all my rehearsal and day of stress and she did it FOR FREE as a wedding gift to us, I can't tell you what a huge help she was and also how important it is to have someone field EVERYTHING for you! She is quite reasonable and I would be happy to refer her to you.
  • Dave's Wedding Band was bought at Tungstenovernight.com for a whoppin' $99 no tax, free shipping! We ordered the wrong size and they exchanged it no worries, and really quickly.
  • My Beauty Team was my good friend Nicole Crabtree Miller and my bridesmaids. I had originally planned to hire a make-up artist, but I have capable friends and it ended up looking great and saving me $225. Nicole charged me just $25 for my wedding run though and she did my hair for FREE as a wedding gift to me, I am just saying folks, its good to be nice to people and have FABULOUS FRIENDS!!!!
  • Our Honeymoon was a whoppin' $519 TOTAL for our 5 night 6 day cruise to Mexico, we got the early bird special at $219 a piece, plus fee's and such. We spent another $500 on the ship on drinks and shore excursions. So all together $1019!
This wraps up the recaps of our wonderful day, I am still obsessed with looking at the pictures and can't wait to plaster the wall's in them! LOL

Have a happy safe weekend....See you Monday!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Venue Rental Recap!

Let me state for the record here I was at a slight advantage on this one, and this is where we cut some MAJOR cost. Why the advantage? 1. I am from these parts and I know how much things cost to rent. 2. It is good to use the places you are already a member of.

The Church rental was FREE well I just tithed a little extra to make up for using the space. The church usually charges $150 to non-members to use the church. (I know cheap right? they call it home for a reason folks!)

The Reception Rental was also cheap $848 total that was broken down like so
  • Basic Venue $350
  • $25 an hour day of the event (we used 8hrs) from the time your vendors arrive until they leave. Caveat here is Friday you can be in there FREE all day, we set everything up Friday. The DJ and The Caterer also came Friday and set up as much as they could.
  • $25 per day Kitchen Rental
  • $35 Parachute Rental (that is what was hanging from the ceiling)
  • $150 Black Drape Rental (around the parameter)
  • $2 per rectangle table (rented 8) $4 per round table (rented 18). (rented chairs elsewhere)

Total Budget was $500 for Reception Rental, but I think in the end we came out ahead once all was said and done. We were there 2 full days and save ourselves A TON of $$$ doing it that way.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Dress and Accessories ReCap

but first, DID YOU SEE? DID YOU SEE? OUR WEDDING WAS FEATURED THIS WEEK at http://thebudgetsavvybride.com/ so cool!

back to the recap.....

Whew, this was a quick way to blow some cash!

Dress Budget was $500 actual Dress total $871 (I mean you only get married once)
The Veil was an additional $65 from Bridal Warehouse (same place we got my dress)
Shoes were $35 plus $3 for dye job from David's Bridal (not to shabby) and they had a low heal, quite comfortable.

Old-Pearl Earrings from a friends wedding New-Dress, veil, shoes Borrowed-Pearl Necklace from my cousin Blue-my Kentucky University Garter (thought my leg was going to catch on Fire)

We rented the Men's Tux's at Mens Warehouse, the rental fee with Tax was the same as the Bridesmaid's dress with tax $141 total. All the girls raved that they would wear them again! They wore their own black strappy shoes.

I bought their jewels from etsy.com and had custom made necklaces that I LOVED so much I ordered myself one! LOL

So Grand total for ALL MY ATTIRE was $932, D's Tux Rental was FREE since we rented 13 tux's there.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Paper and Postage Recap!

This was a double edge sword if I ever saw one! Do you know how much it cost to kill a tree? Treat it? and then make it into adorable Wedding Invitations? A LOT! I sent a total of 120 invitations if I had bought them online at paperdivas.com (they are the MOST reasonable) it would have cost me a whoppin' $166.80 just for the invitations, not horrible, but I was on a budget and I can do better! My theme was Black and White Damask with Green accents, and Michael's just happen to have boxes of invitations (40 per box) at $29.99 a piece!!! That is $90, well I had 50% coupons to use, so I bought one box at a time with a grand total of $45 with the thought I would print them myself. There in lied the double edge of the sword. They were 4x8 and printers are not capable of handling such dimensions so I had to have them printed at Kinkos for $50, I still came out ahead at a total of $95 TOTAL for the invitations plus Labor*...geesh, its just paper!

*Plus Labor, these cute invitations had to be assembled from scratch! ALL 120 of them, I advise you to NOT get the assemble type just print a single sheet! To much elbow grease!

Programs: I did these myself using the magic of Card stock and Ribbon. I took one 8x11 sheet of 65lb card stock and printed a 4 sided program, then I added a ribbon for a dainty effect. They came together nicely and were quite inexpensive 2 packs of Card Stock at $11 a piece total $22 for programs!!!

Postage ran us around $100 once it was all said and done.

So Grand total for paper and postage: Budget $200 Actual Total $217, I will take that!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Photography Recap!

Happy Monday! I am picking up today with Photography! This is the one decision I agonized over the most, I must have gone through about 15 photographers before I found Matt Vietti.

D and I had an idea of how much we could afford on pictures, but no set budget. I knew $2,000 was to much and $500 was probably a bad sign! When I found Matt's Website I sent him an email to inquire on his pricing, I read the bid and thought, oh well moving on.....but something brought me back to his email, he had done something that NO OTHER photographer BIG or small had done. He asked me about D and Me, he wanted to know, how we met, how D Proposed, what we liked to do and he added this at the bottom of his email 40% off Recession Pay it forward Special on EVERY Package!!!!!!!! did I read that right? YES YOU DID! You're hired I said, not so fast Matt said. He wanted to meet D and I to make sure we were a right fit, he wanted to make sure the style we wanted was the style he did. Long story short, he shot the most amazing Engagement and Wedding pictures I will have for a lifetime, and couldn't be happier!

Total spent on Photography $1,400 this included a 3hr Engagement Shoot, 6hr Wedding Day Coverage, unlimited photos, and CD's and Rights to both events. WOOOOOOT!


Friday, December 4, 2009

Entertainment Recap!

Let me say this one more time, we had the BEST DJ EVER! Johnny grabbed a microphone boogied down to the dance floor and led the whole group through the Cupid Shuffle and then stayed on the floor off and on all night. Everyone there commented on how much fun he was!

I have to Thank my Aunt Theresa for referring him to us, he was a super good deal we paid him $275 for 3 hours of DJ Services. He played from 6pm-11pm for no extra charge, he just LOVES his job, and isn't out for highway robbery!

DJ Johnny Gardner 615-384-7799

DJ Budget $300 Actual Total $275+tip

The best part of our big day was being led down the aisle by Daniel Pentecost, Bagpiper extraordinaire. There wasn't a dry eye (including mine) in the house when he started up those pipes. It was a really special moment and one I will remember for the rest of my life. I love my Irish Heritage so to be able to bring that into our ceremony was really special for me.

Daniel Pentecost (he plays everything from strings to Pipes) email pentecostd@pop.belmont.edu

Bagpiper Budget $200 Acutal Total $150+tip

Total Entertainment Budget $500 Actual $425 (WOOT!)

I am wishing you all a safe, and warm weekend, I will pick up Monday with Photography!

Shameless Plug: This Sunday @ 2:30pm at St. Henry Catholic Church in Nashville the Concert Chorale of Nashville will be performing Handles masterpiece The Messiah free of charge! A beneficiary has offered to donate $15 for every person who attends with all proceeds to go to Room in the Inn Charity. Come out and see us, and get your Christmas Cheer ON!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Food and Booze Recap!

Food was by far the biggest chunk of our budget, but it was also Budget friendly. We had Guesstimated around $10 a head for food (sounds unreasonable I THINK NOT TO THIS BRIDE!)

HOW???? The upside of getting married in a really small town is the wonderfully talented local Caterer's who don't mark their food THROUGH THE ROOF.

Are you ready for this? NO really sit down. We fed 220 people for $2,400 that is $11 BUCKS A HEAD! You're thinking what did they eat salad and ROLLS? Nope the Menu was the Following

Reception Menu:
  • Carving Station of Roast Beef, and Ham with Sauces, and Sister Shubert Rolls
  • Chicken Tenders (for the kids) w/ Honey Mustard
  • Broccoli Salad
  • Harvest Spring Salad
  • Cheese, Fruit, and Cracker Station
  • Meat Balls
  • Tea, Coffee, Water
  • Plates, *Tea/Water Glasses,Utensils, Coffee Cups, Cake Plates
*We provided our glassware for the bar

Plus she provided her own servers, table cloths, my cake table (and cloth), and she set up on Friday to be ready for Saturday!!!

Who is this magician of Food that can save you TONS of cash? Paula Nadler 615-384-4357 tell her Amber sent ya! She has already booked 2 weddings from my wedding alone!

Wine and Beer:
Well we had a bit of a mishap with our beer. We had order 3 Kegs from a local quick mart at $75 a Keg (quite a steal), I placed the order 3 weeks in advance and thought we were good to go. I didn't follow up the week of the wedding because I ASS-U-MEd that we were good to go! NOT, Keg's were never ordered and we had to scramble. It worked out in the end and turns out we only needed 2 kegs, good thing because that is all we could find last minute! LOL

Total for Booze Budget $500 total $499.40 (that's how I roll)

  • 2 Kegs at $200 for the two
  • 60 Bottles of Red and White Wine $4.99

Wine we got a great deal on through a friend's dad's Liquor Store. Warehouse Liquors in Springfield, TN!!! Thanks Bentley!

We didn't use a bar tender, I just had my Matron of Honor's husband and friend set up kegs on ice and pop the bottles of wine before the guest arrived and folks served themselves. This worked out well, and my two friends just kept checking in on the bar periodically. (This is a dicey move, some facilites require a licensed bartender and insurance policy just an FYI. )

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Flowers were about the easiest (for me) decision, and execution during the planning process. I have the wonderful advantage of having a floral artist in my family, so she graciously volunteered her services for the wedding and she did an AMAZING job! I gave her a few flower suggestions and colors and she did the rest and VIOLA we have flowers!

Budget $500 Total $400 WOOOOOT!
She bought the Flowers at Wholesale and did charge me for Labor (that's what family's for!) So I shave a HUGE amount off my total cost doing my flowers this way, and I couldn't be happier!

The Beautiful Ceremony Piece

Mother's Corsages

Beautiful Center Piece at the Reception Site


My Bouquet

It has Lace from my mother's bridal gown, and a Golden Nugget that was melted from my Grandparents Wedding Bands. It was a really special piece.

Tomorrow FOOD!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Decor Recap and Breakdown

This was a bigger chunk of my budget than I think I planned on it being, or maybe I included more under the "Decor" umbrella than I originally thought? Oh well here is the run down and cost.

Grand Total: $997.82 (excluding Flowers) Budget $500 (woops)

Here is the break down......

Linen Rentals: Southern Events Total $466.00
This was for 18 Table Cloths (Solid) @ $14 a piece and 18 Table Runners @ $10.00 (Baroque Pattern) price included laundry and damage insurance.

Caterer Provided Table Cloth for Food Tables and Gift Table.

Center Pieces: (Excluding Flowers): Total $102.17
1. Vases 12 borrowed from a family friend price FREE, Hurricane Vases 8 bought from Wal-Mart @ $4 a piece
2. Apples bought at GFS @ $4.99 a bag used 2 bags for all 8 Hurricane Lamps
4. Picture frames 18 bought from Wal-mart @ $1 a piece
5. Pictures from Snapfish 18 @ .29 cents a piece
6. Candles 3 Boxes of 12 @ $6.99 a piece at Wal-Mart
7. Specialty Damask Candles for Food Tables $8 for a box of 4 (2 boxes) bought online.

Chair Rentals: Grand Central Party Rentals total $198
(Let me add this They delivered and picked up the chairs, they were 2hrs late for Delivery and 6 Hours late for pick-up! LOTS OF HEAD ACHES)

180 Black Folding Chairs @ $1.10 a piece (cheapest anywhere by FAR!)

Paper Poms and Wreath's: Made by sweet Family and Friends total $53.78

6 Styrofoam Balls $3.99 each @ Michaels
2 Styrofoan Wreaths $3.99 each @ Micahels
10 Packets of Tissue Paper .99 a piece @Wal-Mart
4 Spooils of Ribbon $2.99 each @ Wal-Mart
Glue Gun and sticks we already had.

Candelabra's and Candles: The Potting Shed total $155.92
2 Candelabra's @ $50 a piece
16 Off White Pillar Candles @ $6.99 a 2Pack @ Michaels

Unity Sand Ceremony: Total Cost $21.95
1. Vases from Old Time Pottery $13.97
2. 2 Bags of Sand from Michaels $3.99 a piece
3. Pedistool borrowed from Church

Monday, November 30, 2009

We FINALLY got our pictures back....

I will begin recaps this week so you can see a break down of how we pulled it off!

Here are a few Highlights....

Friday, November 20, 2009

10,000 Wedding with EVERYTING INCLUDED!!


Ashley at Ashley's Bride Guide just posted this FABULOUS STUFF!


The wedding elves have created an unheard of package for Nashville brides and I am excited to be present it to ABG readers exclusively.

Here’s the scoop: ABG sponsor Southall Eden Farm has collaborated with Nashville’s top-notch wedding pros to design a beautifully intimate (100 gues) wedding for 10 lucky couples…for just $10,000!

wedding farm nashville

(Southall Eden Farm)

What’s the catch? No catch but you must grab one of their 10 pre-set, non-peak wedding dates. If you haven’t set your date (or are open to reconsidering) and want a fantastic wedding, this is the chance of a lifetime. Here’s my tip - if you are interested, contact Southall Eden asap. So many brides will be getting engaged between Thanksgiving and Christmas and you don’t want a newly engaged bride to grab your $10,000 wedding!

farm wedding leipers fork

The $10,000 package includes:

• Rental of Southall Eden Farm for ceremony and/or reception
• Professional event planning and directing by Premier WED
• Frame tent and rental items from Music City Tents & Events
• Designer flowers by The Enchanted Florist
• Your choice of heavy hors d’ouvres or buffet dinner by Unique Flavors
• Three tiered white wedding cake by Unique Flavors
• Wedding photography by Photographix
• Professional lighting and ipod docking station by JD Music
• Custom printed invitations by Southall Eden Paperie
• Clients are welcome to bring their own alcohol.


(Unique Flavors)

enchanted florist nashville

(The Enchanted Florist)

wedding invitations custom

(Southall Eden Paperie invitations)

The lucky dates available are:

Sunday, May 9, 2010
Sunday, May 16, 2010
Sunday, June 6, 2010
Sunday, June 13, 2010
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Sunday, Sept. 12, 2010
Sunday, Sept. 19, 2010
Sunday, Oct. 3, 2010
Sunday, Oct. 17, 2010
Sunday, Oct. 24, 2010

These dates will go fast. Stop reading, and go contact Shannon of Southall Eden Farm asap. (615) 775-4080

I SAID GO NOW!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Crockpot take 2!

Tonight I am making this super yummy soup for dinner Pumpkin Black Bean Soup!!! The Crockpot is plugged in (I double checked!) and I hope it is pipping HOTT and ready to gobble up when we get home!

Speaking of Gobble, Thanksgiving is a week from tomorrow and with married life comes the new challenge of eating 6 meals in 2 days and driving all over God's country to do so. D and I decided we will do Thanksgiving with my family this year, since we did it with his last. Friday morning we will drive to Kentucky and do Thanksgiving with his brood. I am looking forward to many Holiday favorites like, My dad's yummy Turkey, mom's stuffing, and Dave's mom's Peanut Butter Pie!!! I better hit the treadmill double hard this week!

Thursday, November 12, 2009


I forgot to plug in the Crock pot before I left for work yesterday morning, guess who had NO dinner waiting on them at home? You got that right! My amazing husband stepped right in and took control of the quesadilla maker and we had a Mexican night! OOOOOLE!

So tonight the crock pot is on (I checked) and dinner will welcome me home! WOOT


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Getting Domesticated part deux!

Well the Pumpkin Ravioli was bust!!! When I say bust I mean, it was a disaster, we had both doors open, fans running, I had to phone a friend, and we ended up eating frozen Turkey Pot Pies. Oh well, at least I tried right?! LOL

Tonight I am going to redeem myself with Slow Cooker Chicken Taco Soup I mean, how hard is it to mess up a Crock-Pot recipe? LOL Guess we will see, it is simmering as we speak!

Wedding Related:
I spoke to my Photographer yesterday The Fabulous Matt Vietti he said 2 weeks til the pictures are done, as soon as I get them I will be posting Wedding Recaps (I am a visual person).

Add to that, my brother Daniel popped the question to his girlfriend Mandi this past Saturday, let the planning begin! Congrats Daniel and Mandi!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Getting Domesticated!

Tonight I am making a Rachel Ray dish for the Hubby, he LOVES anything with pumpkin in it!
Thank you to BFF Chelsea for the dish recipe!

Link to RECIPE

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Say What?

Dave talking to me about the time change-

Dave-"Babe, I am liable to be in bed when you get home from work now that it is getting dark at 4:00pm" Me "really?" Dave "Yeah, when the Shop Keeper throws the blanket over the cage the canary sleeps!!!"

Where does he get this stuff?

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Early Chirstmas Shopping!

So I found a new cute site TheNest.com (The Newlywed site!) it had lots of Christmas deals. and steals. I thought I would share a few with you, some of these would be great wedding party gifts check out these sites!!!

Fun Sites:

Cheesy Knife Set $22 at delight.com

Wild Flower Seed Bombs $9 at Jayson Home & Garden

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Bridesmaid Jewelry

Now that the wedding is over I can show you the great Jewelry I bought my bridesmaid's as their gift, for being a part of our special day! I bought it from etsy.com and from the very talented SmilingSunshine Shop!

Look how lovely the ladies looked! I had 7 of these custom made, and got the girls, matching black pearl earrings. They looked so good!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Bakerella Cake Pop's the Question!

This is one of the most creative way's I have heard of a man propose to his sweetie in a long time check this out


and she said yes

Follow the Bride-to-be!


Grab a Kleenex, you're gonna need it!!

Happy Friday all!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Cute gift ideas!

One of the most unique Shower gifts we received was personalized stationary with our names on it. My Aunt gave us some formal stationary with our monogram and last name, and my friend Julie gave us the cutest stationary that took the images from our Engagement Pictures and turned it into cartooned us. I think these make a great and unique gift ideas!

You can order this cute stationary and other great gift ideas from thank you cards, save the date, shower invites, or baby announcements at http://sophiesphilosophies.com/

Send someone a letter the old fashioned way. We have become to informal with email and the internet, try something 'new' send someone a letter with a Stamp, you might just make their week!


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

My new favorite Colors!

If you are getting married next fall, or heck even this fall these are my two favorite new colors together!!! Let me know if you are using them, I wanna live vicariously through you!

I am in LOVE with this color combination Grey and Orange (and I hate Orange), but something about it with the Grey makes me wanna do it all over again! Orange Calla Lillies are also STUNNING in a bouquet! Here are a few inspiration boards from the internets!

Monday, October 19, 2009

New Photographer great deal!

I loved my wedding photographer (pictures will be in first week of November), but if you are not in the Tennessee area or on a tight budget check out Ian. He is out of Chicago just getting started and giving a great deal right now (will travel for free!)

Here is his email to me:


6-Hour Coverage
Online Proof Gallery
High Resolution Proof DVD with all of the images
Engagement Session (if possible)
No Travel Charge


Extra hours = $100/hour
Second shooter = $150


Please let me know if you are interested. I would also appreciate if you can pass this information. You may email (ianvillaceran@hotmail.com) or call me at 847-454-6590. Thank you and I look forward to hear from you.

Ian Villaceran


We are back from our Honeymoon, man we had a blast! If you have never cruised do it once in you life, food 25hrs a day, drinks at your disposal its great!!!

While on vacation I realized which direction I wanted to take my blog, bare with me it will be more entertaining than It sounds. I am going to cover married life.

For us example talking about another married couple (which we would never do)

Dave: "it must be hard being married to a saint" me: "Thanks Honey" Dave: "no, you know what I mean"

So sit back and I promise to keep you entertained! You bride's to be don't worry either, I have recaps coming to show you how to save some serious $$$ on your wedding and other tidbit to throw in as well! I wouldn't forget about you!

Mrs. D