showers

  • Being a Bridesmaid ~ How Much Does it Really Cost?

    One of your dearest friends has just become engage. You both squeal with excitement and start discussing the details when she grabs your hand, looks into your eyes and says, "Will you be my bridesmaid?" Before you even think -- you say, "Yes of course! I would be so honored!!!" It is a huge honor and it and be a really fun experience but what many don't realize - until they are in the thick of it - is that it can potentially be very expensive too.

      

    So how much does it cost to be a bridesmaid?

     

    The answer to that really depends on your bride. Is she sensitive to the budgets of her bridesmaids? IS she frugal minded or extravagant? Will her wedding be local or is she planning a destination wedding? In a recent article on MSN Money it is noted that a bridesmaid can spend upwards of $1000-$1400 by being in just one wedding! How on earth could the bill rise to that amount? Let's look at some of the expenses that bridesmaids are responsible for.

    * Bridesmaids dress ~  This can really vary in price depending on your bride. According the wedding website, TheKnot.com the average price for a bridesmaid dress is around $200. This doesn't include any alterations that need to be done, undergarments, shoes or accessories -- so you need to take this into consideration as well.

    *Travel and Lodging Expenses ~ If the wedding you'll be participating in is in town -- fantastic! If not, you will need to plan accordingly. Most of the time the bride and groom will reserve a block of rooms for out-of-town guests and the wedding party. This can save you a lot of money and if you room with one or two other bridesmaids, you can save even more.

    *Bridal Shower ~ Whoever hosts the bridal shower, usually ends up paying for the bridal shower. Sometimes it's the Maid-of-honor, sometimes it's all the bridesmaids together, or another friend or family member of the bride. You may only be responsible for the bridal shower gift but your expenses may also include travel and party supplies or food for the shower as well.

    *Bachelorette Party ~ The main rule for the bachelorette party is that the bride pays for nothing, which means the bridesmaids pay for the entertainment, food, drinks, and anything else that is included.

    *Wedding Day Pampering ~ This usually includes hair and nails. If this is something the bride has asked to have done -- many times she'll foot the bill as a gift to her bridesmaids. However, that isn't always the case. If you are on a tight budget you might want to clarify who is paying before making your appointment.

    The most important thing you can do, is to be upfront with the bride about what you can and can not afford. If she is the awesome friend you've always known her to be, she'll understand and will keep you budget in mind when making her requests.

  • Baby Shower for the Dad-to-Be ~ By Guys for Guys!

     

    Oh yes -- you did read that right! Expectant dads deserve to have baby showers too! No, you don't have to sit around with your buds, munching on tiny triangular cucumber sandwiches. You don't have to spend your time playing games such as finish the baby rhyme, pass the dirty diaper, or name the baby food (unless of course you really want to). 

    No, the Father's Shower is not put together by wives, mothers -- or friends of your wife or mother. We are talking about a party for guys -- hosted by guys. Think bachelor party -- baby edition. A much tamer version of an old favorite.

    Invitations can include a note  --  requesting each guest to bring a favorite children's book and a card, which includes parenting advice for the Dad-to-be. Let guests know that if they bring these items they will be treated to some FREE beer -- if not, they should just BYOB or be left out in the cold! Trust me when I say, they will bring the items. Also, if a guest is coming who isn't a father himself yet, he is still asked to provide parenting advice. This usually gives those who are already dads, a nice chuckle!

    It's always great to have a little extra fun with the dad-to-be. Perhaps making him wear a neon green, yellow, blue or pink shirt that declares "Dads are Rad" can be entertaining. It also makes for some memorable photos. You never know, he may like it so much that he'll wear it to the hospital when the baby is born.

    As we stated earlier, you don't have to play the traditional baby shower games -- unless you want to. Instead, have a fierce jam session playing Rock Band or Guitar Hero. Now that's fun! If you - or one of the other guests - has a Wii, there are tons great games you all can play. For added fun you can place bets or hand out prizes to the winners such as; a free round of golf, a gift certificate to a favorite restaurant, or a six-pack of exotic beer.

    Oh, and we can't forget the food! Skip the petit fours and order some spicy buffalo wings, deep dish pizza and anything fried. This is a special occasion after all. Throw caution - and your diet - to the wind, and enjoy!!! Put together a Superbowl spread and your guest of honor, will be mighty impressed!

    So what do you buy for the expectant dad? At Charming Chick we have several new and very masculine diaper bags that would make the perfect gift! Gag gifts can be hilarious and fun. You could also put together a "Daddy survival kit" which could include anything YOU think a dad should have on hand at all times -- extra wipes, diapers, pacifiers, burp clothes, ear plugs...wait! Did that say ear plugs? You bet it did! Have fun with it but include some really useful items in there as well. He'll be thanking you every time he has to reach for one of the items you included.

    Most of all have FUN!!!

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