I want to begin by saying that my polite spine was nowhere to be found when this all occurred. I know I will be hammered on for that by the community and I have to say I well deserve it.
I met the bride, Carla, when I joined the gym and she was assigned to be my personal trainer. We became friendly, going to Bunco together, lunch etc. I was very excited for her when she became engaged after a crummy divorce. Right before the New Year, she and her fiance eloped to Mexico unbeknownst to most. When they returned she eagerly shared pictures of their beach wedding, complete with beautiful gown, newly purchased suit for the groom and an exciting swim with the dolphins! How fun!
Given that they had eloped, the reception was several months after the actual wedding. I get a call one afternoon and Carla is wanting my mailing address for the reception invitation. No problem! Love to come! Now THIS is when the etiquette starts heading south…..she then asks, by the way, could I bring a dish to the reception? Being caught off guard I say sure. I ask what she would like for me to bring since I don’t want to bring salad if there are already salads being made. She then tells me that she wants me to bring dessert and oh, she’ll go ahead and email the recipe of said dessert to me. (This always elicits gasps when I tell the story but it never overly offended me because I am not the world’s best cook). Anyway!
Fast forward to a week before the reception….Carla calls and tells me she finally was able to get the recipe and email it to me. I tell her when I get home I will check the email etc. As I am about to hang up, she springs this on me: “By the way, I need you to QUADRUPLE the recipe.” OK..
I get home and find the recipe in my inbox as promised. The recipe is for strawberry pretzel salad dessert but with a change to the crust-use graham crackers and not crushed pretzels. Basically this recipe contains strawberries, cool whip, cream cheese and now apparently graham crackers. The ingredients are NOT cheap and by the time I quadrupled the recipe the stuff came to $45! I was unemployed at the time waiting on disability and/or payment from workers’ comp so money was a HUGE issue. Goodness knows that $45 was way more than I would have spent on a gift.
So two days before the reception I get a call from Carla telling me that it was OK if I just used disposable pans for the dessert (Which I had already purchased from the dollar store-2 of the 9×1 3 pans for a dollar! So add $2 the total spent.) Oh, and I have to provide serving utensils for my dessert too since they (she and her new husband) are only providing utensils for the stuff they are bringing. Back to the dollar store for two spatulas.
I had agreed to help decorate the reception venue the night before the actual reception as I love doing that kind of stuff. I help drag out all kinds of decorations for the beach-themed reception to reflect their beach wedding. Fun seashells, fake sand, beach nets and volleyballs, beach chairs and oh yeah-real sand to re-create the beach complete with volleyball net and chairs. I have to say that they sure went all out to spend on decorations!!
The day of the reception I get a text from Carla that was obviously sent to more than one person as it was addressed to “Girls”. The text went on to detail that during the reception if we “girls” could keep an eye on the veggie trays and that if they run low, there will be veggies in a cooler under the table and please replenish as needed. Oh, and by the way, the toast will be later on and when it’s time to go around and pour, the bottles will be in the kitchen area (!!!) I finally got mad at this point. (I warned you that I was without the polite spine!)
The reception was to begin at six that evening. At approximately 4:30 I get a text from Carla asking what time I was planning to be at the reception. I said around six since that’s when it was to begin. I was then informed (via text) that “food is supposed to be there at 5:30″. I replied that I would do my best to get there as soon as I could. As soon as I could was me leaving at 5:50 (the reception site is not far from my house). I bring in my FOUR 9×13 pans of strawberry salad and utensils and am instructed to put two of them on the end of the buffet tables. The other two are taken to be refrigerated.
The reception begins and I do NOT keep an eye on the veggie trays nor do I run around and pour any beverages for the toast. Carla says nothing to me. I did notice that that 100+ people that were supposed to be in attendance were not there-more like 45 or so. And those in attendance were all pretty much her clients from the gym! I didn’t meet a single person that was connected to the groom. Really kind of sad! Towards the end of the evening, I go to check on the status of my dessert thinking I am going to have a ton of it to take home. Two girls are chatting by the desserts and I hear one of them say that she really hopes that people start eating the strawberry stuff soon as she doesn’t want to be stuck with a ton of it to take home. (I am wondering at this point why she would think that she is going to take home any of MY leftovers, but anything is possible at this point!) I mention that I don’t want a ton of leftovers of MY dessert and the girl looks confused and says, “I made these strawberry desserts,” and I say, “No, I did. These two pans are mine.” She looks again and then asks where the heck are the ones that SHE made then? Turns out this poor girl was also suckered into making four pans of the strawberry desserts as well! She had arrived at 5:30 as food was supposed to and all four of her pans ended up in the refrigerator! I ended up leaving with two full pans and one pan ½ full, but I know that girl left with all four of her pans full to the brim!
Fast forward two weeks and I get an invitation to breakfast with Carla. I accept mostly out of curiosity since I have only had passing contact with Carla at the gym since the reception. We go to breakfast and we begin talking about the reception and how she now has so much time on her hands without all the planning, etc. She’s managed to write all her thank you notes though! Obviously I never received a TY note-those were clearly reserved for those people who brought an actual GIFT.
So needless to say we are not really friendly anymore, more just passing nods at the gym. I just love that they were able to afford to fly to Mexico for 10 days, get married on the beach with dress and suit and professional photography and swim with the dolphins but can’t afford to pay for catering for their reception! Grill away Ehellions! 0804-13