Why I Said “I Do” to a Destination Wedding In Palm Springs

My husband and I were planning a destination wedding for October 2010 in Connecticut. We traveled there in late July to nail down the details, and things quickly devolved.  Flying home we knew we had to move to plan B – which didn’t exist.

We had a date that family had built plans around, (10/2/10) and it was now August. We flew back to LA and made a phone call that would lead to Palm Springs wedding bliss. On the other end of the line was Gregory Goodman of My Little Flower Shop . Within a week of arriving home we found ourselves in Palm Springs for the weekend, and when it was over we were ready to say “I do.” Here’s why:

  • The level of hospitality that we experienced at venues we toured was amazing. Everyone we met so welcoming. People here want and appreciate your business!

    Palm Springs: a great place for weddings, and wedding photos! Love the backdrop.

  • The town itself has a relaxed vibe and so much character – the shopping, the Mid Century Modern architecture, and the Rat-Pack legacy would be a fun getaway for all the generations of family coming to celebrate with us
  • As a resort town, it’s uniquely prepared to host events. The level of professionalism was incredible, and we knew we would be exquisitely taken care of.
  • It just felt right.  Wherever you choose to hold your destination wedding, you’ve got to feel connected to the place.

Wherever you choose to hold your destination wedding, don’t forget it’s about to join an elite group: the most special places you hold in your hearts as a couple.  Make sure it’s somewhere that deserves a spot on that list.

Be well, and love well.

-Dinah

Coping When Neither The Candlesticks Nor The Happy Couple Dance With Joy At Your Being Their Guest

I posted recently about my hero, Lumiere the candlestick from ‘Beauty and the Beast’, who choreographs elaborate musical numbers to honor his guests. My point was that at its core, the point of party you’re throwing is celebrating with guests, if they are unhappy, something has gone wrong.

Alas, not all couples have gotten the memo.  Amy Dickinson, brilliant syndicated advice columnist and another (non-animated) hero of mine, addressed the issue of dealing with the fallout in her column today.  I repost her wise response to this worried MOB from the Toronto Sun.

Groomzilla plans wedding no one can attend

Amy Dickinson, Advice Guru My Little Flower Shop

Amy Dickinson, Advice Guru and a personal hero

 

   By ,QMI Agency

First posted: | Updated:

DEAR AMY: How can our family move forward from the mess of an overplanned, underattended wedding in Europe? The groom (in his mid-30s) has planned everything and excluded me, mother of the bride, from any of the plans. The bride’s siblings can’t afford (or can’t get vacation days from work) to attend.

Tuxedo Shirt 6-10-08 -- IMG_0638

Involved grooms are a good thing – don’t overgeneralize!

Yesterday, the groom called our son and offered to fly him to Europe for the wedding but made no such offer for the bride’s sisters. Of 200 invited guests, only 40 are expected to attend — no aunts, uncles or cousins. As the bride’s parents, we gave a fixed sum of money for the wedding but now, due to the small gathering expected, the couple will be making money on the deal.

Yesterday, the groom announced that the one family friend who can attend is not invited to the rehearsal dinner, after traveling 6,000 miles. A destination wedding sounds, at first, like a good idea, but when the day nears, it feels exclusionary, hollow and pretentious. As the mother of the bride, I am filled with sadness.

The couple has been engaged for two years, and we feel so burdened by the build-up, the bad decisions, the exclusions, waste and self-centredness of this event. How do families recover from this? I can’t see these relationships ever going back to normal.

I love my daughter very much, but I believe the consequences of this wedding will be the unravelling of our family. Is there any hope? — Heartbroken

DEAR HEARTBROKEN: You aptly describe the challenges when couples pour all of their attention into trying to create a fantasy day while causing real-world problems. Often these couples return home after their fantasy weddings seriously let down by the reality of marriage and family.

You and your husband should meet with the couple. Do not pile on and accuse them of creating a hollow and pretentious event, but do ask that they commit some of the money you contributed to helping family members attend the wedding.

Otherwise you should accept that this is not what you would have planned and not what you want (and perhaps not what the couple wants at this point, either). If your daughter is completely dominated by a “groomzilla” who is demanding and disrespectful, she is going to need your support moving forward. You may also have to accept that you and she have very different values.

Though this event might rend the fabric of your family, don’t make the mistake of assuming it will unravel.

Gold Medal Wedding Advice

Ah the Olympics.  Young smiling athletes performing at their best representing us all.  In a way, we see the best in our country as we watch the competitions in London.

But what else do we see?  We see hear a lot from commentators about “the Olympic Ideals”  which seem like things we all ought to live up to.  Respect, friendship, education, world peace…etc.  As a wedding professional, and drawing from my experience at a top Palm Springs florist, I see lessons brides can take from these young athletes and apply to their planning.  Here are three:

  • Have a Positive Attitude.  From the moment they stepped out onto the track for opening ceremonies, the athletes were thrilled. They were full of energy,confidence, and smiles! Thinking positive changes your outlook, and makes you a happier bride.  Through it all this is a celebration you’re planning! What fun, right?

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 27: Fireworks explode o...

    LONDON, ENGLAND – JULY 27: Fireworks explode over the Olympic Stadium during the opening ceremony of the 2012 London Olympic Games on July 27, 2012 in London, England. (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife)

  • Listen to your coach. The athletes (well, the smart ones, anyway,) know when it’s time to let someone else make a decision.  They have faith that they’re working with someone they trust to do what’s best for everyone involved.  This can be a hard one for brides, who frequently feel they need to direct every detail of their wedding.  Sometimes though, your vendor, or bridesmaid, or even (gasp) your mother knows better, so it’s important to listen, and learn to let go.
  • Live In The Moment. Listening to the athletes’ interviews, each one repeated that their overall Olympic experience was the most important thing to them. You could tell they were soaking in their time as Olympians, and relishing their time in London. Brides should keep that in mind.  Wedding planning can be a drag, for sure, but this is a time of your life that you’ll never get back.  Enjoy every minute.

Our Olympic athletes are kicking serious butt in London.  And it’s a delight to see the country rally around a group of bright, talented young people.  Be patient as you, or the bride in your life, move through the wedding planning process. In the end, everyone will rally to see you win something better than a gold medal: a happy married life.