Monday, August 16, 2010

This is significantly harder than I ever imagined.

Ok, so, yes. I always knew planning a wedding would be a challenge. Duh. However, it's proving to be a challenge in ways I could not have possibly imagined. Ok, I suppose I could have imagined it if I closed my eyes real tight and tried really hard. Anyway, I digress. Even an inexpensive, modest (but lovely, handmade, and well-thought out) wedding is undeniably and unbelievably expensive, especially if you want to have it anywhere near Seattle. I know, again with the 'duh.' I've put myself on a budget, and I don't want to go over it. Confusing me even more, however, is that when I think about even that modest budget, I think about how. much. money. it really is and I kinda freak out. What with considerable student loans, and a desire to build onto the house, and perhaps, some day, maybe (did I hedge that enough) be a stay at home mom (especially considering the fact that I don't make enough to even afford child care), I'm not sure I can justify it. I mean, it really is one 12 hour day. Seriously! I could pay off half my student loans instead!! My current *brilliant* plan is to win the lotto. I should probably have a backup plan, however.

Chris really likes the idea of a hotel wedding. It's convenient, they do all the work, and generally they throw in a hotel room for the bride and groom. Awesomesauce. However, I'd love to save a couple thousand dollars, have it somewhere way cheaper (I'm told I should say "more economical," not "cheap":)), where I would have to do more work, but I'm totally organized enough to work that out. Then, if we chose, we could spend a couple hundred dollars on a hotel room. Or not. Whatever, I don't really care much one way or the other about that. Most of the non-hotel places I've found are either just as expensive as a hotel, too small, or just plain meh. I'm still in love with the California Substation in West Seattle. Here's an old photo (it actually looks even nicer now that the Dakota Place Park folks planted lovely blooming flowers all around the front):

This place is fabulous. It's near our houses - so it's local, which is awesome. It's gorgeous in its old-school-ness without being overly ornate. It has new-old windows and exposed brick on the inside. It's a blank canvas, which I love because I can decorate it however I want. Rental fees are based on whatever Seattle Parks & Rec would charge (read: practically free in comparison to traditional "wedding" venues). There's a garden out back, and a large patio. The indoor capacity is 210, so if it rained, we could move everything inside. I have in mind a caterer that would let us buy our own alcohol. So, what's the catch, you ask. (There's always a catch.) The park outside has been beautified, but the building renovations (including seismic upgrades, and covering up that pesky hole in the ceiling, etc.) have been postponed due to budget cuts. It was supposed to be finished in late fall, 2010 (i.e. right now). Instead, they're hoping to start renovations this fall and finish in April, 2011. I should know more soon about whether the budget passed and they have money to actually get the ball rolling. However, even if they find money in the budget to get renovations started again, it's suuuuuuuuper risky to wait until next April and just hope that budget cuts or budget overruns (because of some crazy unpredictable weirdness in the building - I live in a 100 year old house - this happens) don't waylay the construction. If the venue falls through in April, we'd officially be screwed. But I don't want to spend a million zillion dollars on a wedding. I don't want to spend all that much on a wedding, to be honest. Could something please just be easy? For once? No? K, just checkin'.

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