There are things to keep in mind if you are planning an at-home wedding. Very important things.
Toilets. It’s probably the least romantic thing about your wedding, but it’s probably one of the most important. No matter where you decide to have your wedding, you’re going to need at least one. If you are having your wedding at home, you might decide that guests can use the washrooms in your home. But after giving it some serious thought, you might change your mind. If you are having an outdoor wedding, do you really want your guests traipsing in and out of your home? Can your plumbing system take the wear and tear? Is it possible that your septic system will be overstressed, causing a plumbing nightmare on the biggest day of your life? (Ever see Meet the Parents?) After doing some research, we discovered that port-a-johns definitely aren’t what they used to be. There are new user-friendly models in a variety of colors. Not only are they more pleasing to the eye, they have sinks and flush toilets. Even though they are more expensive, they were definitely worth the splurge.
Neighbors. Warn them in advance and give them a heads up closer to the big day. They might even offer up their driveways for parking – or a portable stage! Be extra kind to them as you get close to your wedding day so that they will put up with potentially high noise levels from your happy wedding guests.
Invite your caterer over before the big day so s/he can scope out your kitchen. S/he’ll need to know how much space there is to work in – as well as fridge and stove details.
If you are doing the outdoor thing, it’s a good idea to rent a tent. That is, unless you have a huge tolerance for risk. (Which I do not.)
Hire a cleaning person to clean your home thoroughly prior to your wedding – not to mention after your big day. Unless of course you have a lovely friend or relative who has kindly offered to take on this task.
Have bug spray handy. Citronella candles might provide ambiance, but they are useless when it comes to fending off hungry ‘mossies’.
If your guests like to over-imbibe, be prepared: some might want to crash at your house. We had a pretty tame crowd at our wedding, but like any good party there’s a chance this will happen at your wedding. If you’re not equipped for sleepovers, be smart and call a cab.
Enjoy the journey. Easy for me to say – I got married eight years ago. But, really, try not to sweat the small stuff like boatlifts.
Give yourself a pat on the back for pulling it off. Planning a wedding at home is no small feat, but it’s one of the most rewarding things you will accomplish. Raise a glass to yourself – (and to your neighbor) for a job well done!