Its a delicate dance to plan a nice wedding these days. In many instances, the occasion does double duty as a family reunion and traditional brides are almost obligated to provide a meal worth making the trip for.
Weddings are as old as time ... but every bride still tends to reinvent the wheel to make her own celebration unique and personal. ( The subject of how Bride magazines are the mother of all unrealistic expectations is a testy topic for a blog with an entirely different focus than this one )
To be perfectly honest, there are only two ways to keep costs under control for a wedding. One can either keep the guest list small or take the 'home grown' approach where family and friends provide the food, entertainment and sometimes even the venue.
In many instances, economies can be made by dispensing with the silliness that nobody ever actually sees ... the handmade stockings, the embroidered pumps, the custom fitted bra .. you get the picture. At the end of the day, people usually only remember how happy the bride and groom were. (and before the keyboards catch on fire, if any of you gentlemen honestly believe that you have a vote in the wedding proceedings you are bigger optimists than I am)
Seriously though, at the end of the day, a wedding is also an excellent opportunity for two people to make a statement about who they are as a couple.
A couple of animal lovers for instance, might want to request on their invitations that donations to their favourite rescue be made in lieu of gifts. Table cards could be done up with pictures of adoptable pets from the group. In this day and age, when printers and good papers abound, little scrolls could be easily made for favours with a thank you note and a meaningful quote about the animals, eh? Gosh, if there has been a website for the wedding it could include a petfinder widget featuring a pet from their group of choice!
For some weddings, this could represent a significant boost to any rescue. I remember doing more than one dinner where the groom brought enough bills from the gifts to pay our cashier for a meal that cost thousands of dollars.
Savvy rescues or shelters could post a few thank you pics on their website as well as having either a virtual or a real wall of appreciation, hmm?
What time is it? In a world of spiralling prices and diminishing donations, its always time to encourage any support for the animals.
UPDATE ON POST: When we came back in, there was a helpful email from CAPS' treasurer to let me know that CAPS .. along with many other rescues in NS subscribe to the Canada Helps service. Along with allowing kind hearts to help with the click of a mouse and get a printable tax receipt at the same time :)
Even better, Canada Helps also allows brides to set up a "giving page" to their charity of choice and of course this could also be included in the wedding website as well. Thanks Karen for the info :)