Cost Over Runs

Trip Start Dec 01, 2010
Trip End Mar 01, 2011

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Flag of United States  , New Jersey
Monday, January 9, 2012

As a Father I have always tried to provide for my family as best I could. My Father had mentored me from a very young age on how to be a man. It is a man's job to provide for his family regardless of how many jobs it takes or how hard you have to work. He led by example and expected his sons to do the same.

Everyone has bills; it’s just the way life is. Mortgage and or rent payments, utility bills and insurance bills. We need to eat and we even have to pay to go to bathroom some times. Most everyone accepts this and pays without question, it’s just normal life. Now comes the issue of children.

Our children are a gift from God. They are what make us a family. They bring us great pride and happiness 99% of the time, the other 1% of time we just kind of let it go and move on, no one is perfect. As they grow we provide everything they need or want, from stupid looking shoes or hair styles to jeans that have holes in them and cost $75! Gail and I have been blessed with two wonderful Daughters. Dance lessons, (really, what is that going to do for them in life?) prom dresses and basic girl foolishness items have all been purchased from the sweat of daddy’s brow but this is nothing compared to the bank account draining wedding.

Our youngest, Kristin, got married while Big Daddy was still working. Money flowed like water as overtime was a way of life. A great affair would be had by one and all even if Daddy was going broke! Gail would simply tell me to work a few more hours overtime and stop the crying. After all, didn’t I want the very best for my children? So with that in mind I just wrote the checks, hoped they didn’t bounce and had a few more drinks.

Now has come the time to celebrate our oldest one’s wedding. Bonnie and Charlie have decided to get married in March of 2012. They are good kids and are perfect together. Gail and I were very happy that Bonnie had found her soul mate and overjoyed at how happy she is. As a father I am sure that Charlie will look after and provide for her in all the years to come. But then, like a hammer had slammed into my skull, it hit me. Big Daddy was paying for another party!

No longer is the overtime coming in. There are no longer the over flowing spending money accounts at the bank. I’m RETIRED and on a fixed income. Nice going Bonnie, wait till Daddy is not working anymore and then get married. My mind now starts working non-stop on how can I trim things and get off cheap. I come up with a plan.

Sitting in the parking lot of the hotel Bonnie has chosen for her big day I was going over my plan for the last time in my head. This was going to be easy. Go in, see the place and then do business with the wedding planner. Out of the truck and in we went. As soon as we walked in I was doomed. Gail gave Bonnie the thumbs up and my plans went out the window. There would be none of this cost cutting that I had dreamed of. Items were being added within 5 minutes of our arrival. Luckily for me, Charlie had negotiated a good package deal with most items being included but there are these stupid yet as Gail explained to me necessary items we must have.

Chair covers. Are you kidding me? Are the chairs not covered and cushioned with something already? You see, this is not good enough. We must have a piece of fabric thrown over the chairs so they look special. Special? Do you think everyone’s backside actually cares if they are sitting on silk fabric? I think not but at least we will look good. My mind is running 500 miles per hour as the final contract is drawn up and put in front of me. All I can see is dollar signs as I carefully read line item by line item. There is a person to tell us when to go and another to tell us to stay. Tips for this one and tips for that one. Guys parking cars and people hanging coats. It’s insane. I’m losing control here, that’s it I can’t take it. I boldly suggest to Gail that we need to make some cuts here. She grabs the paperwork and looks it over. "Yup we sure do" she replied to my amazement. Gail quickly gets out the pencil and crosses out something on the contract telling the wedding planner “this is way too much for this” so out it goes. As the calculations are being redone I’m beaming with pride seeing my Gailsy step up to the plate and take one for the team. Hey maybe all our discussions of cutting back have finally sunk in. This could be the start of something big. Then, as I start to read what was cut, my heart fluttered and I started sweating. I could feel my face getting cold and clammy. You see, all I have ever asked for at a wedding is a simple thing. I want an antipasto table. Just some cheese and Italian meats. Maybe some olives and peppers and marinated eggplant. Nothing big. You can keep your stuffed mushrooms and bacon wrapped scallops, I’ll take some salami and a piece of Swiss. It was gone, all gone. My cost cutting had done me in.

After all is said and done Gail and I hope we give our Daughter and new Son In-law a wonderful celebration. We want them to be as happy as we are and enjoy their day. It is for them and about them and nothing more. The smiles on my Daughters face will be worth every penny.

Sometimes in the early mornings, before the sun rises and Gail or the boys are up, I think of all life’s lessons I have learned over the years, some of them good and some not so good. I think of the many long talks I had with my Father about raising children and the importance of family. I would like to think that he is looking down right now with a smile and telling me “now you get it”. Sometimes being a Father is as simple as Salami and Cheese.
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Kristin on

And don't ever forget for a single second that Bonnie and I are incredibly grateful for everything you and mom have given us. We are such lucky girls to have a father like you. You gave us the best life and we love you very much. You keep getting better with age, too. You're father raised a very good man and hopefully you know that you raised us to be good women. Well, let's be least I'm a good woman...Bonnie on the other hand is a different story! :)

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