Being A Gracious Wedding Host

Recently, an article came to my attention in which a bride made certain demands of her guests.  
Included in these "requests" was an expectation that each guest contribute 
a minimum dollar amount
You really can't make this stuff up! 
Once I picked my jaw back up off the floor, I got to thinking, 
where did this sense of entitlement come from?  
Weddings are about love and celebration, NOT expectation.
It is in that spirit that I bestow unto you:  
Whether you are throwing a lavish party for 300, 
or a sweet backyard elopement,
please keep these things in mind!

This is easily one of my favorite sentiments!
When you enter into anything with an expectation- a relationship, an experience, even a simple conversation- you are almost guaranteed to be disappointed in some way.  
Leave your expectations at the door! 
Brooke Ellen Photography

When it comes to a Wedding, your focus should be on celebrating the love between you and your partner.  
It's as simple as that.  

You should not expect:
Gifts on the Wedding Day
While giving a wedding gift to the couple is customary (not to mention good & proper etiquette!), you may have some guests who are not in a financial position to provide one.  This is especially true for destination weddings where guests are already paying a hefty cost for travel & accommodations. 

You should not expect:
To rely on friends and family to be able to help in the capacity you may want them to
Does Aunt Millie make a great cake?  Fantastic.  
Has she offered to make YOUR wedding cake?  How sweet.  
What happens when Aunt Millie cannot actually follow through on this 
and has no way to get the cake the to the venue?  
What happens if 20 people who eat that cake become ill?  
What if you HATE Aunt Millie's cake?!
↑↑ *Not Aunt Millie's Cake* ↑↑

 While it's lovely that friends and family want to pitch in and support you in any way they can, they really should get to just be guests at your wedding.  And almost always, they seriously underestimate the time certain tasks will take. Save them (and you) the stress & stick to hiring professionals for all of those little details! A simple, "thanks but we've got that covered so that you can enjoy the day with us!" will suffice.

You should not expect:
That everyone will act appropriately
Weddings are often a great excuse for adults to cut loose, 
and it should be that way! Weddings are fun!  
For some, it's a date night  
For others, it's the first time they have seen certain family members in a long time. 
Either scenario may result in unanticipated anxiety OR over-celebration.  
Someone is bound to forget (or ignore) their personal alcohol limits.  
While this could result in a fantastic viral video, 
it's a good idea to have one or more "point" people to monitor unexpected situations.  
These people are usually your more responsible wedding party members (or a sage uncle).
Always say thank you, no matter how small or insignificant a gesture may seem.
This should be common practice in our every day lives, but, people forget.
When planning your wedding, say "thank you" often.
It is so easy to get caught up in the excitement and allure of planning a wedding.  
This may very well be the best party you have ever attended!
In this world of Pinterest and royal wedding luxury constantly at our fingertips, you may occasionally need a gentle nudge (okay, sometimes a shove😉) back down to earth.  
Check yourself, and your partner, often.
Keep within your financial and personal means, 
and have regular discussions about what that means for the both of you.  
When in doubt, put yourself in the position of your guests. 
Are you creating a wedding that YOU would want to attend?

Stephanie Craig Photography