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Lanae Brody hails from Scottsdale, Arizona and has lived in Los Angeles for 4 years. She graduated from the University of Arizona with a BA in Journalism in 2008. She and her fiance Dennis have been engaged since December and look forward to their November nuptials!
Over the course of my years growing up, I’ve always had visions of what I would and wouldn’t want my wedding to be like. From the Cinderella ball gown to the perfect flowers, chuppah, aisle, etc., I’ve always thought about it. Of course, something that always excited me was who the girls next to me, my bridesmaids, would be.
When the ring finally hit my finger, the plethora of questions began. How would I choose? What if someone’s feelings got hurt? What if I made the wrong decision? How many bridesmaids are too many? What if someone said no? I was terrified to ask my friends and family to stand by my side on the day I say I do. I wanted each of the girls up there to have a purpose and meaning in my life. No matter if I had known them for one year or since the day I was born, I thought long, hard, and carefully about who to ask and then how (more on that later)! My fiance and I stayed up for 3 nights in a row making a list and talking about it. I wanted us to be on the same page so there were no surprises for either of us. Luckily, we totally were. Of course we had the discussions of how many is too many, should we have the same number of bridesmaids and groomsmen, my mother yacking in my ear about how I should have no more than 4 or 6 (in this day in age, yeah right!), but in the end, I realized how important it was to do what WE wanted to do because it was OUR day. Nobody else’s opinions mattered but ours. This is something that I’m finding that I need to keep reminding myself throughout this entire process, especially coming from a household full of Jews.
There’s a lot to think about when picking a bridesmaid. You want friends and family who will step up to the plate and be there to pick up the pieces when the Maid of Honor is off doing a thousand other things. Someone who is not only a team player, but truly loves you, your friendship, and most importantly, is happy that you have found the one. Because of how special all of these ladies are to me, I wanted to do something to make them feel special as well.
Since I’m a reporter by night and work at Sweet E’s Bake Shop by day, I decided I wanted to combine both of my worlds into one big, creative, different way to ask my girls. I was so excited, I couldn’t even wait. We do so many different things here at Sweet E’s, so I couldn’t wait to use my imagination and love of sweets to create something for the ladies I love most. I had already seen cookies with “Will you be my bridesmaid?” on them and even little cute poems that we had done, but I wanted something different. After all, I worked there and needed to show off how great of a bake shop we are! We do these great cookie images here, and I thought it would be great to give them something to physically do with them. So after thinking long and hard, I decided to create a giant image cookie for each bridesmaid with a fun picture of us together and have it all jumbled in a box for them to put together. I had already chosen my wedding colors and made sure to incorporate those into the puzzle for the girls. Some of them pieced that part together, while others did not! I also made sure to pick really fun pictures with my bridesmaids. I tried to choose photos that were either inside jokes, fondest memories, or anything else that was just a special moment that I shared with them. Some were silly while others were more serious.
So on to how I decided to ask: I hosted a very small birthday dinner a few weeks after the proposal, and the girls didn’t know that THEY would actually be receiving gifts on MY birthday! My amazing fiance arranged for the restaurant to do a very special unveiling of the table. One of my bridesmaids is notorious for being late. She’s a former Arizona Wildcat and AEPhi alum and I swear I was losing my mind waiting for her to arrive! When she finally got to the restaurant, we were led to a table where the boxes were on the table, wrapped in a pretty box with a covered window, waiting to be opened. They all had their names on them so they knew where to sit. They all looked confused but seemed to have a little idea as to what was going on. I gave a little speech and told them how much I loved them and they meant to me, and on the count of 1, 2, 3, I said, “Go ahead and open them!”
Inside the pieces were all jumbled up. One of my bridesmaids put it together in a matter of seconds while others spent five minutes on them! Nobody said yes, though my Maid of Honor shed some tears, she was so excited. I had to ask for verbal confirmation if they all were saying yes! They did, and some celebratory sangria was immediately brought over to our table! I later found out that the girls had all been Facebook chatting daily about who I was going to ask to be in my bridal party. How cute/funny is that?!
Because I have three bridesmaids who lived out of state, I had to ship their cookie puzzles to them. They all had so much fun with them, too, and I wish I could’ve been there to see the looks on their faces when they put the puzzles together.
If you’re looking for a fun way to ask your bridesmaids to be part of your wedding, feel free to “steal” my idea! It was a hit. And if you’re looking for more sweet inspiration, you can always get in touch with Sweet E’s and brainstorm other ideas for your bridesmaids or the wedding events in general. You can always place orders by emailing email@example.com or by calling 323-422-8885.
All Yentas readers will get 15% by mentioning this post, too! My bridesmaids had so much fun getting asked this way and I’m sure yours will, as well!!