Booking and Planning Updates

I did book the Judy Chamberlain band about a month ago! They’re pricier, but they were the quality we wanted, and she was very understanding and willing to negotiate on the price, knowing that we still want to have enough money to have this wedding! The nice thing was being able to talk to Judy on the phone and be completely open with her about expectations, the eclectic mixture of his and my music tastes, and still get the vintage-y feel of it. We both knew, even before we’d started thinking about music, that we didn’t want a DJ. Chris thought DJs were tacky, and he hates the typical “party music,” and we weren’t sure about a “wedding band.” Add to that the large range of age groups and types of people that will be there – among them college-aged friends, people from churches, his childhood friends from the harbour, diving, and surfing, his old customers, and a small handful of people I knew from NIST. I’d had my heart set on swing and classic rock, and plus we both love a good live band, as often plays at Stateside when he’s working, leading to phone calls from him to “come in and watch the band tonight!” – and, as a consequence, spent money. When it came to the research and choosing, though, I pretty much picked Judy once I’d spoken to her. I spent some time contacting other musicians and bands so that I could get a feel of things, but I was given the run-around, flat-out insulted by – not even a musician, but – a “band broker” who hyper-inflated the prices (10k for four hours? get real!), and then disappointed when another band finally got their audio samples to me, and I found that the leader couldn’t really sing.

Joy was also busy, and I wasn’t able to get in contact with her again, so I have been contacting other coordinators for day-of coordinating. The last I’d spoken to Joy, she’d gotten a little overloaded, so it’s understandable that a wedding over a year away is not on the top of her list of priorities. In the meantime, however, I met up with Michelle Schneiter of Verve Events about a week ago, and her day-of coordination package is very reasonable, and I was impressed with how organised she was – getting the list of needs, details, names, etc. So far I’ve found her the most organised and affordable plus easy-to-contact coordinator. I’m 80% sure of booking with her when I can afford it. I get the feeling, however, that I’m also being bridezilla, not having much else to do, and this has been occupying my mind to chase away the bad thoughts from trying to balance everything lately. I’ve been looking for another job, as funding a wedding on a server and a hostess’ salary, and especially buying a house, is a little out there. I did go to an interview and pretty much bag a job, but as a student, I couldn’t justify committing to it for more than six months and give up my academic career for it, so I let it pass.

I just want to get the pieces of this wedding put together so that I have the peace of mind to be able to set it aside. I won’t have nearly as much time for it nearing the end of my studies and with the house purchase looming. I also don’t want to plague Chris with the little details, especially as much as he is spending all his time working and saving now that business is slow, and he and his father are on a tighter deadline to finish the house in Big Bear on the weekends before his dad and Masami (his dad’s wife) have the child in September!

In many ways, I’d love to be happy and just enjoy the moment, but my head doesn’t let me. I’ve seen so many friends get engaged since I’ve started planning, and it seems most are getting married before we do; not that the timing matters as much, but I am a little miffed that it seems easier for them. We don’t need the “large party,” but with many of those closest to us coming from out of town (some of our family coming from out of state or out of country), it would be nice to be able to spend the time celebrating over simple food and dancing. Sadly, “simple food” isn’t so simple or affordable when it comes to Santa Barbara. It would be nice for it to be as simple as getting married in a church surrounded by the people with whom we’ve grown up and who have made our lives beautiful, but as it is we’d have to exclude parents and those who’ve become family if we do that!

As of now, this is what we have:

Chosen, designed, and/or paid for in full (finalised, in other words):

  • My dress – made in Thailand on our vacation
  • Our bridesmaids/groomsmen – keeping it simple, two each
  • My bridesmaids’ dresses
  • Our minister – Pastor Ricky Ryan of Calvary Chapel Santa Barbara!
  • Our invitations (I designed them in InDesign) – paper, envelopes, etc.
  • Silk flowers (may decide on real flowers later if Grass Roots Santa Barbara keeps their “Timeless Orchids” package affordable!)
  • Reception band – Judy Chamberlain band, as mentioned above
  • Favour bags
  • Table layouts
  • Wedding day itinerary
  • Guest list

We have chosen but still do not have the money for:

Things yet to be decided:

  • Mens’ formalwear – Chris would rather buy a nice suit than rent one, and we need to get the men fitted for suits
  • Cake/cupcakes – possibly Anna’s Bakery in Goleta or Henning’s Cake Boutique

It’s impolite to beg, but we do have a registry, and anything would help immensely!

God bless, hugs and kisses.

Lots of Love,
><> Elizabeth <><