Archive - Parents RSS Feed

Good Advice and Bad Advice About Money


It ought to go without saying that all wedding budget advice is not created equal. That certainly is the case when the question is who is going to pay for what!

Just this morning I felt myself compelled to read an article at Gal Time about the ‘new rules’ for who pays for what.

The author of the piece, Analorena Zeldon, consulted two experts, Andria Lewis (wedding planner with fifteen years’ experience) and Jodi RR Smith (author and etiquette expert) about how couples should broach the divvying up of expenses between themselves and their parents.

On the upside, the article not only assumes the couple will take some responsibility for some expenses themselves (and has a convenient breakdown of who pays for what when the two of you are paying for it all), but also that the bride’s parents might choose for a variety of reasons to opt out entirely.
(more…)

Kid Week: To Invite, or Not to Invite

Welcome to Kid Week at Manolo for the Brides. All week long we’ll be discussing the who, the how, the why, and the whether of having kids at your wedding.


The eye of the beholder is a powerful thing. For instance, that photo above? Depending on who’s looking at it, it might represent adorable kids being themselves in a super cute way… or it might represent imminent disaster costing significant cleaning bills and a possible trip to the ER.

And you know what? Both parties are absolutely right.

Some people feel that a wedding without children present is a hideous affront to the institution of marriage. And there are also people who feel that allowing a single child to attend makes a mockery of an adult celebration.

And you know what? Both parties are absolutely wrong.

Your marriage is taken neither more nor less seriously depending on whether you have children in attendance. The legality and spiritual significance do not change one iota depending on whether you have a flower girl or not.

In short, it’s an issue of preference, nothing more.

So if it’s just a matter of preference, how do you decide if you’re on the proverbial fence?
(more…)

When You Want a Small Wedding… But They Don’t


(Illustration via Intimate Weddings)

Not every bride wants a big wedding. Not every groom wants a big wedding. Some couples really, honestly do want a smaller, more intimate celebration with only a select handful of people in attendance. There are parents who absolutely support this, too.

And then there are those who don’t.

If you and your intended want a smaller celebration, but one or both sets of parents are fighting your decision, it can make wedding planning a lot more difficult than it needs to be. But if you can keep things in perspective and find small ways to be flexible, you may just manage to get both families completely on board with your smaller wedding.
(more…)

Not Your Mother’s Wedding Gown


If you’re a bride in your twenties, chances are your mother wore something very similar to this. Yes, it’s the quintessential eighties wedding gown. And somewhere out there, a loving mother is trying to make her daughter wear it when she walks down the aisle.

But Mom, while this was the top of the pops in 1983, it isn’t anymore. And remember how you didn’t want to wear your mother’s wedding gown that looked like this?
(more…)

Dad Surprises Cornwall Bride with Red Carpet Moment


Samantha Poser isn’t famous. Neither is her new husband, Adam Kerby. All the same, Samantha’s father, Phil, wanted to give her something special for her wedding. Phil, who owns a carpet store, decided that his daughter deserved a red carpet… so he and his staff created it for her.

This, though, isn’t the interesting bit. That would be the fact that he managed to keep the carpet a secret from Samantha until they walked out their front door to head for the church, some 200 meters away.

Phil, who owns a carpet shop, had gone to elaborate lengths to fool his beautician daughter into thinking that she was going to make the bridal entrance on the back of his elaborately decorated quad bike.
The bizarre ruse worked as Sam braced herself to mount the unusual steed before it was revealed she had her very own magical red carpet for the fairy tale stroll to the church.

Clearly this isn’t an idea for everyone. Access to that much red carpet, and the ability to get streets cordoned off for the walk to the wedding venue make it impractical for most of us. And, of course, there are brides who would rather be swallowed whole by the Earth than walk a red carpet to church. In this case, however, it seems that the ability to get the practicalities dealt with, the personality of the bride in question, and the weather all cooperated to make Phil’s vision a happy reality.

Samantha and Adam are currently honeymooning in Egypt, and I hope that all of you will join with me in wishing them a long, happy marriage full of charming surprises.

William and Kate Set a Date


It’s probably old news to you by now, but Prince William, son of Charles, Prince of Wales, has set a day to marry longtime lady Kate Middleton.

They’ve also set a place, Westminster Abbey, and had about a bazillion photos shot of her wearing his mother’s famous sapphire and diamond engagement ring. A bank holiday has been declared, as well, for the royal wedding on April 29, 2011.

What is less popularly noted at this point is the conflict for so much of American political and punditical glitterati: it seems that April 29 is also the day before the annual White House Press Conference dinner.

The organizers of the Press Conference dinner have decided to go ahead with the date they have already been planning around.

And the Daily Mail has weighed in with plenty of questions about whether having a full-on royal wedding right now is in any way appropriate… though even they do admit William and Kate are stuck in a kind of damned if they do, damned if they don’t situation as far as publicity goes. After all, if they throw a lavish do, they’ll get flak for being wasteful and grossly out of touch with the masses of unemployed. On the other hand, if they have a quiet wedding in private, at least as many people will raise a ruckus for having been given no royal spectacle, and start to speculate on why they hid away on such an important occasion for the state.

The sad part is that in the end, this particular happy couple have less say in their own wedding plans than the average couple. Many of the decisions are based on tradition, protocol, and upholding the dignity of the monarchy.

Me? I’m not going to rag on them for decisions largely made by a phalanx of major domos and political advisors. I’m just going to hope that William and Kate have a long, happy life together.

It’s no more and no less than I would wish for any couple as they embark on the journey of marriage.

Three Out of the Ordinary Ways to Include the Father of the Bride

… or the father of the groom! Weddings, as I’m sure we all know, tend to be about the ladies, at least insofar as we’re constantly being told that weddings are supposed to be about the ladies. There’s the bride, of course, and her mother and grandmothers. And the typical attendants chosen by brides are the maid of honor, bridesmaids, and one or more flower girls (as opposed to the less common man of honor and bridesmen). There’s a groom floating around in that estrogen bath somewhere, but his role is perceived as obvious. Less clear these days is the role of the father of the bride. Once upon a time he might have been the one writing the checks to wedding vendors, but nowadays brides and grooms are paying for some or all of their weddings.

So what are those dads doing while their kiddies are knee-deep in wedding planning mags, anyway? Sometimes the father of the bride and the father of the groom take that old, annoying advice given to guys and simply stand back and shut up. But it turns out that there are dads who don’t want to be relegated to playing the part of another piece of background scenery! And these dads are often left wondering what exactly they should be contributing to the wedding planning process. With that in mind, here are three out of the ordinary ways the father of the bride and father of the groom can help out:

(more…)