We are over a year away from difficult child & E's wedding (August 24th, 2013) but the ball is rolling, wheels are in motion and we're gathering information, making lists, and checking out vendors. Since so many of you have been through weddings (your own or adult child's), I would appreciate some ideas. I will tell you what has been decided so far and give you some questions that have come up and I would love to hear your thoughts! difficult child and E are being married at a small local park on top of a hill in a stone pavillion. It is about 45 minutes from our home and the reception is about 30 minutes in the reverse direction. Parking is very limited and difficult child wants to limit which guests will be at the ceremony. E's immediate family is HUGE, my immediate family is HUGE and exh's immediate family is HUGE. Who does she invite to this and who does she eliminate?? Just families alone is about 75 people and she just doesn't think that will be doable. Plus, we would have to rent seating, etc., for the ceremony as well as the reception which is being held at E's parent's home....If we limit the guests for the ceremony we may be able to avoid rental equipment and just decorate. The ceremony will only take about 30 minutes. The reception is at E's parent's home. We will rent a tent, dance floor, tables, chairs, etc. It will be catered, easy child is making the wedding cake, etc. Since it's at his mom's home, I need to work with her and I know she will be very accomodating, but how do I work with her without coming across as a control freak. difficult child has a vision of what she wants and it coincides with my ideas pretty much (some tweaking here and there). I don't want to offend her, so how should I and when should I approach her about coming over and looking at her yard to choose placement of the tent, band, etc? What if her suggestions are not what we want? And, since they are offering up their home and land to the reception, is it fair for the kids to expect his parents to contribute financially for anything? Traditionally, doesn't the groom/groom's family pay for the flowers and booze? or something? Also, I have to connect with exh at some point to see what he will be able to contribute - because it better be something substantial if he expects to play the role of proud papa (as I'm sure he does, ugh). And speaking of costs: Don't the bride and groom attendants pay for their own dresses, etc.? difficult child wants her dad to walk her down the cobble path up on the hill. I suggested both exh and H walk her together, she doesn't like that idea so she wants ME to walk her instead. Star suggested that we three (exh, h and me) stand near the altar and difficult child and E walk down together, she kisses us each in kind and we sit down, they get married. I like this idea a lot. Another option would be for difficult child to just walk down alone. She and E have lived together for two years, so it's not like anyone is really "giving her away", Know what I mean?? What are your thoughts on this. If exh gets to walk her down the isle, as if he contributed one iota to her upbringing, I will explode into tiny bits - I'm not even kidding, my head will blow off my shoulders. So, don't even suggest that I get over it. Thanks. This wedding is being classified as Non-Traditional/Traditional. There are some traditional things taking place, some not so traditional things. As I posted in an earlier thread, we bought difficult child's gown - gorgeous - and she will wear the veil my mom made me for when I married her dad (exh) - also gorgeous. Her maid of honor (easy child) and bridesmaid (cousin) will wear red, it's a lovely deep apple red. That was going to be my color dress, but now I feel funny going with that color - I don't want to seem like I am in the wedding party when clearly I am not. The other option I've thought of is like a champagne or gold colored dress. If it is a day/afternoon wedding, in August, can I go knee length or as mother of the bride do I have to go full length? I don't want to show my knees anymore. Also, does E's mother need to confer with me about her dress color? I hate all the stupid rules I've been reading about in the etiquette and planning books, but some do make sense. on the other hand, I don't want to come off as either too rigid or to relaxed. The list of guests: Do we have to allow single people to bring a date and if so, is there an age cutoff? difficult child & E have tons of adult cousins with SO's that we've met at family functions. I feel they should be included. However, what about the younger cousins - the teens or lets say under 21 crowd with an SO? Are they allowed to bring a guest? And what about co-workers. If I invite one, do I have to invite all - my office is only 6 people, but I'm not especially close with all of them, only at work. Right now the list is around 111 people (that includes guests for single people over 21). easy child and I were talking about a bridal shower and when the time comes we'd like to have one at our home or in a nearby restaurant, perhaps a brunch or something like that. I like the old fashioned traditional women only bridal showers and easy child is okay with that as well. Their cousin is from exh's side and I'm sure she'd be on board with this as well. However, cousin's mother is a pita and I KNOW she will try to circumvent the entire thing by offering to throw a bridal shower for exh's side of the family. On the one hand, I just say 'whatever' but on the other hand, that's rude to me. We all get along fine and why can't she just get with the program, Know what I mean?? So, if she comes up with any crazy ideas to separate events leading up to the wedding, how do we handle that? difficult child said to let her do what she wants, that she doesn't care and doesn't want there to be any strife between the families. But this aunt is very pushy and needs to be shut down. I think easy child is up for that totally - but what do you think?? We want a nice garden wedding with lots of flowers, good food, fun music and nice weather. And I think it will be great, but I need some mother of the bride wisdom from those who have gone before me! Thanks in advance! So, bring it on - let me hear your ideas, thoughts, opinions, etc. Thanks!!