Friday, January 15, 2010

Trimming the Guest List

I'm not a hoarder, I promise, but I do have trouble throwing things away. When we moved last September, Rebecca "helped" me donate a lot of clothes and items I haven't worn or used in years. I somehow grow these emotional bonds with THINGS.

Me: You can't throw those away, those were the first jeans that I ever bought that made me really start to like jeans again!
Rebecca: When was the last time you could fit into them?
Me: My junior year of college.
Rebecca: They have a giant hole in the crotch, even if you could fit into them, you wouldn't wear them.
Me: We're keeping them. I loved them.

That conversation happened over and over again with item after item: electronics, shoes, magazines, movie tickets, etc etc etc.

Now, I'm at a crossroads. We need to carve into our invite list, but I don't know how to do that. Our perfect guest list, with which I've grown attached, needs to be trimmed. Each guest is on that list for a reason - we consider them close friends or family. That being said, we need to get rid of some people. I'm not good at this.

Does anyone have tips on how to weed through the guest list? I need help.


  1. Dude, that's a really tough one. Nobody likes to cut people off the guest list. But if it's a necessary evil, it'll have to happen somehow.

    My suggestions:
    1) If you haven't already done so, categorize your guests in groups. One way to tackle this is to draw some concentric circles. Think of the center-most circle as your immediate family (moms, dads, siblings, grandparents). The next circle out is your extended family (aunts, uncles, cousins). The next circle is your closest friends (and I'm talking, surrogate brothers/sisters or life-long compadres). Then there's less-close friends, or friends-of-family, or however you choose to organize it. Consider the people on the outer-most circles as more expendable than those on the inner-most.

    2) How many people do you have to cut off the list? Start by just trimming a portion of that total (if you have to cut 15 ppl, try cutting 5). Look at those initial cuts and think about WHY you chose them. Use those reasons to create some basic rules, which you can try to apply to other guests and see if you feel comfortable cutting more.

    3) If you've got major overflow, consider having a post-wedding get-together for all the folks you couldn't invite. Most right-thinking people will understand if you say "Look, we couldn't afford to host everyone we wanted to, so we're having a big party a couple weeks later for anyone who wants to come celebrate". If they're truly your friends, hopefully they won't be offended. Make it clear that gifts are not expected at this party -- the point is just to let more people share the joy of your recent matrimony.

    Good luck!

  2. Jason, you are giving me a headache. It's very simple: ONLY INVITE PEOPLE YOU WANT TO HANG OUT WITH.