In seven days, I’ll be married. I don’t have words to describe my excitement… or my anxiety :-)

In the last few months, we were quickly going well over our $12,000 wedding budget — as much as $14,000.

We’re not going to do that. Hoorah! But it looks like we will go over. I miscalculated several big expenses, got rescued on two by mommy and daddy, and found solutions to come under on other expenses. In the end, it looks like we’re going to be over budget about $500.

That beats $2,000! But it’s still over budget. We haven’t paid for everything yet, but I pretty much know what the remaining items will cost.

What went wrong?

Reception — At first, I thought we were coming under budget on the reception. And we were, except I forgot a little thing called taxes! And that the gratuity is included in the invoice total.
Over: $400

Dress — My dress has a LONG story behind it which I won’t bother to tell here. Ultimately it needed to be taken in (it fit when I bought it, apparently lost a lot of weight since then) and cleaned (it’s moved pretty much as much as I have). I way underbudgeted for this, about $600 off (don’t ask). But daddy calls and asks if he can take care of anything… um… dress? Ok, he says. Thankya!
Under: $150

Flowers — I actually got this one right! Budgeted about $300 for all the flowers, the bouquet, corsages, decor. I went with a supermarket, Safeway, because supermarket flowers are MUCH cheaper than with a florist. The real cost comes in with the labor. Either way, I told them what I wanted and what I wanted to spend and they came through for me. But then mommy called and INSISTED on paying for the flowers (I didn’t want to her to give me a penny). Ok, fine!
Under: $300

Hair — This should have been a no brainer. I budgeted an amount without asking my stylist her fee!! Huh?! Just duh on this one, I have no excuses.
Over: $50

Groom’s Attire — I don’t know what men’s clothes cost, but I did some online research and created a budget for my guy. I did not account for his champagne tastes and beer money AND that he’s big and tall; he generally can’t just pull a suit off the rack. To his credit, he found a place that tailored a suit just for him and threw in vest, tie, and accessories for free! He got such a good deal he bought a second suit (not on the wedding budget). But the suit for the wedding, still over the budget.
Over: $232

Cupcakes — Cake has got to be the most grossly overpriced part of a typical wedding. It’s just cake! We went with cupcakes, which are cute, easy and cost less than tiered cake. But I didn’t factor in taxes (AGAIN) and while there is no delivery charge, there is a set-up fee, which takes this over budget.
Over: $76

Wedding bands — As I mentioned before, my initial online research led me to think we could get decent rings for about $200 total. That is possible, but not for the kind of rings we wanted. We got rings we love and we got them for less than half what they cost retail, but this is still way over budget.
Over: $359

Everything else is on budget to the dollar or turned out to free! Items under budget are only under a few dollars. Still, all together, we should not be over more than $500.

Ok, back to work!



My Move Diary: Thank God It’s Over

by Debt Hater on September 4, 2011

My move ended well, but started with a mucked up U-Haul reservation.

I didn’t want to spend a small fortune again on movers packing and moving the apartment, which is what I did the last time I moved. Not only did I spend thousands, but I wasn’t pleased with the service! So, I decided then that the next time I moved I would hire movers to pack and load a truck that I would drive to my next location, cutting the move cost in half.

That’s just what I did this time, yet somehow it STILL was a move filled with drama.

It wasn’t the movers. They showed up on time, moved quickly and allowed me time to sit since I was sick as a dog during the whole process. It was U-Haul. Since I was doing this alone, I reserved a truck for my stuff, a tow dolly for my car and furniture pads, a furniture dolly and a utility dolly to make things easier for the movers — and to speed up the loading process. I went early in the morning to pick up my stuff. When I arrive, they tell me that the truck was ready to go, but the tow dolly was in another location — 16 miles away.

Puzzled, I asked just how the hell was I supposed to do this with my tow dolly nearly 20 miles away. “You take the truck, load it up, then get the tow dolly,” the “helpful” young man told me. I stared at him blankly. “So, leave my car here, drive 10 miles back to my place, load the truck, drive 20 miles to the other location to get the tow dolly, then drive 16 miles from there back here to get my car, is that what you’re suggesting?” Then he stared at me blankly.

Why did they split my reservation into two locations? No good reason, just some nonsense about people stealing tow dollies, so a location may not have everything at one time and blah blah blah. Makes no sense when I made the reservation weeks in advance. Ok, so why didn’t they tell me that the reservation was split — especially when I CALLED to confirm my pickup location? Oh yeah, no good reason for that either.

I changed the reservation to pick up the two dolly and truck in the same location. I drive another 16 miles to get the equipment. I get it, take it back to my apartment. The movers arrive. I toss open the truck. No furniture dolly, no utility dolly and no furniture pads. Tarnation.

So then, I had to go to a THIRD location to get THOSE materials. By now, we were running about four hours behind, I felt like death warmed over, popping decongestants and Tylenol for my raging sinus headache.

It took the movers four hours from start to finish, then I had to drive the truck to Washington through a torrential downpour. Meanwhile, I couldn’t breathe, at all, through my nose.

That was so fun.

But, I made it. I hired other movers to unload the truck and they were awesome, fast, on time.

The smoothest move I ever had was from Virginia to Tennessee. Those movers were awesome, arrived on time and did everything they were paid to do. But since I couldn’t afford to pay them to pack, I had to spend two weeks packing up, which just sucked.

Aside from that one, every move has had its share of snafus. I’ve moved a lot and you can read the chronicles of my travails in My Move Diary.

I’m just glad to be in… too bad the place looks like an episode of Hoardes between my boxes and my fiance’s assorted bags and boxes o’crap everywhere. He claims that he is going to organize a yard sale. I’ll believe it when I see it, but he only has until I flip out and demand he get this crap out of the house before I throw it out or kill him. The clock is ticking…



My Move Diary: Going Right Back Where I Belong

August 15, 2011

The only thing I hate more than debt is MOVING! I moved to New Jersey in November 2010 from Washington, D.C. In less than seven days, I’ll leave New Jersey and move back to Washington, D.C. Two long-distance moves in nine months? Madness. But good riddance to this place. There is nothing wrong with New […]

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Our $14,000 Wedding Budget? Getting Off the Wedding Budget Track

August 13, 2011

My fiancé and I set a $12,000 Wedding Budget. There are several major expenses that I failed to budget for and other expenses that cost more than I anticipated. Not In The Wedding Budget The rehearsal dinner. I didn’t plan for this initially, because I wasn’t sure it was necessary, but isn’t it good etiquette to feed […]

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Don’t Know How You’re Feeling? Your Spending Record Will Tell You

August 2, 2011

I’ve been on a roller coaster of emotions this month. Happiness, to sadness, to loneliness, to frustration, to fear, to anxiety, to anger, to apathy, to elation, to excitement, to disappointment, back to anxiety, to contentment, to more anxiety, then to dread. I was all over the place. Y’all know I moved up here to […]

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8th Random Thing About Debt Hater: LOVED COMICON!

August 1, 2011

Went to ComicCon. Spent money. Loved it! I will bow down to the true geeks and say right now, “I am not worthy.” I love my comic book movies, my anime heroes and heroines and my supernatural, fantasy stories, but I am not in a league with most of the fans I saw at ComicCon. […]

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7 Random Things About Debt Hater

July 13, 2011

I’ve been tagged by my good friend @singlema over at Fit and Fab For Life. Here are the rules: list 7 random things about yourself and answer a couple of questions. 7 RANDOM THINGS ABOUT DEBT HATER 1. I’ve always been tall. On my first day of kindergarten, I was all dressed up with my hair […]

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June Monthly Report: In The Black And Getting Back on Track

July 3, 2011

Happy 4th of July Weekend! In my May Monthly Report, I was supposed to get back to fiscal basics. I kinda did. Thankfully, June was a slow money month and I didn’t do much damage. Report for June End of the month: $834 Saved: $1,950 (36% of my monthly income) Total Net Worth: $43,151.74 Accomplished in […]

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Eight Things I’d Do If I Lost My Job Tomorrow

June 21, 2011

A good friend of mine sent me a text message yesterday telling me that he had just been terminated. He came in early, stayed late and worked his butt off the whole day. Right before he was about to leave, he was called into an office and told that his performance review was below average […]

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May Monthly Report: Getting Back to Personal Finance Basics

June 1, 2011

In April, I wrote about how leaving my finances completely on autopilot without checking in wasn’t working. Ask me why I continued that practice for the following two months. Of course there is no good reason why. I’ve just been deeply distracted by wedding planing (which, mercifully, hasn’t been that difficult or involved), my new […]

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