Budget Tips

The Art Party & Final Payment by Vanessa Larkey

This weekend sh*t got real. Again.

Peter and I woke up Saturday morning and started rushing around like a McCallister about to miss their flight.* 

Our final appointment with the venue (Fantasy Farm) was scheduled for later that morning. We were responsible for providing final attendance numbers and paying the remaining balance on our deposit. Our grand total was about $2000 more than we had originally budgeted for. This was not fault of the venue - entirely us. Our wedding guest list expanded by approximately 20 people throughout the year. To be fair, the venue had flagged that might happened. They said more often than not, wedding guest lists grow as the date moves closer.  

After departing with thousands of dollars, we rushed back to our place. Later that afternoon we were hosting a wedding decor arts & crafts party. As I mentioned in a previous post, wedding odds and ends (place cards etc.) are hella expensive. Bunz Trading Zone is great for some of that stuff, but if you don't swoop in right away, you're left wandering the aisles of Michael's cursing their inflated prices for wedding decor. 

Not content to spend $40 on table numbers, I enlisted the help of some of my artistic friends (shout out to Gabrielle and Michelle!), my bridesmaids and future mother-in-law, Susy. Our mission? Create wedding place cards, table numbers, and a few other wedding odds and ends for the big day. 

As a thank-you, I made lunch and bought booze. 

What did I learn from the crafting party? For one, I was reminded of how insanely talented my friends are. I was floored at their designs and artistic prowess. I also learned that crafting takes much longer than I had initially anticipated. I figured we would be able to knock off the table numbers, place cards and a few other odds and ends in 2 hours. How young. How naive It took about 5 hours in total to complete everything, with the place cards taking up the most time and resources. I'll think of that the next time I'm a guest at a wedding. 

This photo is brought to you by an, "Oh shit! I better take photos of this!" moment. 

This photo is brought to you by an, "Oh shit! I better take photos of this!" moment. 

Aren't they beautiful??? 

Aren't they beautiful??? 

So! We're three weeks away from the wedding. What's left to do? A bunch of stuff, including our wedding day schedule. 

*Any Home Alone fans out there? 

The Bachelorette by Vanessa Larkey

This past weekend I was reminded of two things:

1)   A glass of water with every drink is a must when you’re +30

2)   I have really fun friends and family.

My sister threw me a bachelorette party last weekend and it was the most fun I’ve had in a long time. Sure, I may be biased. I mean, who doesn’t have a great time at a party thrown in your honour? 

 I won’t bore you with details about just how awesome it was – I’ll just go over the highlights for any bridesmaids currently planning an epic party for their special friend.

The Night Before

My Mom really wanted in on the bachelorette festivities, but obviously wasn’t into hitting the club at 11 p.m. -- especially on Dateline night. The solution? A visit to the 10 Spot for some mani/pedis with my Mom, future Mother-in-Law and bridal party.

Showing off our nails! 

Showing off our nails! 

The Pre-Party

My sister wanted to host a pre-party but didn’t want her guests to have to shell out a bunch of cash for dinner and drinks at a restaurant. The solution? She and my bridal party rented a hotel room! Not only do you feel like you’re in high school again (but without the acne problem), but, it also serves as a comfortable crash pad at the end of the night. Plus, your guests can BYOB before heading out to the bar.

Looking to be even thriftier? Book the hotel using points!

Hotel room essentials. 

Hotel room essentials. 

The Bride’s Costume

If you know me, you know that I hate drawing attention to myself. That includes the standard bride-to-be bachelorette getup. You know what I’m talking about. The veil. The tiara. The sash. The t-shirt.

My sister knew that, so when my friend Gabrielle offered to make the costume, Kayla heartedly accepted. She knew I wouldn’t be able to say no to wearing something out that a friend had made, and she was right.

At the end of the day I had fun wearing the costume. I think it was because Gabby did such a kickass job putting it together. Annnnnd if you want her to make something for you, let me know and I will connect the two of you!

The costume! Awesome job, Gabby! 

The costume! Awesome job, Gabby! 

The Party

It’s been about six years since I last visited El Conveto Rico. The College Street bar has a reputation as a bachelorette haven, but they've really upped the ante since I last visited.

There’s now a $15 cover and ahem, let’s just say they’re cashing in on the Magic Mike craze. At first the amount of pink boas and tiaras can be disorienting, but then you remember, everyone is there to party their asses off and have an amazing night. The amount of women ready to party also cuts down on the amount of creepos that are admitted into the club, which also makes the night more fun. Plus, the drag show at midnight is bound to make anyone smile. Who doesn’t like watching drag performances??

Another great thing about Rico’s was that my entire party was admitted to the bar and people came at all different times of the night. It was great to know that everyone was able to get in without an hassle.

*No photos to protect the drunk and disorderly 

The Day After

After spending the morning rehydrating, my sisters and I went to brunch at Figo to dish on the night before and soak up some of that extra booze sloshing around in our stomachs. Afterwards, I realized the three of us have never gone out for brunch together. It was pretty special, and something I hope we continue to do in the future. 

Thanks for planning such an amazing night!

Thanks for planning such an amazing night!