Money-saving Mason Jars

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Mason jars are gaining popularity in weddings. They are appearing in ceremonies, receptions, even wedding parties. They can be useful in many different ways and can save you multiple trips to stores trying to find the perfect vase, container or lights. Just buy in bulk and you have several mason jars for each of your wedding needs.

Do you have a ton of mason jars laying around? Have you found a bunch at a discount or at a yard sale and want to know how you can put them to good use? Here are some ways to save money using mason jars.

Wedding Centerpiece. A simple, easy way to add a little elegance to your reception tables. You can just wrap the mason jar with rope and then fill with water and add blooms. You can also have lace, ribbon or even a chalkboard label on the mason jar to decorate it. You can also dye the jars, or add food coloring to the water. There are endless possibilities!

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Drinking glasses. Put one mason jar per person with a tag attached for their name, and put up a sign stating this is their glass for the night. This saves from waste, too many dishes to clean, and littering. A green and eco-friendly option, you can add a little pizzazz by adding a ribbon, or poking a hole through the lid and adding a straw.

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Souvenirs. Use a hot glue gun and spell out the words “Bride” and “Groom” on mason jars. You can even make some for your wedding party. Adorn accordingly. You can even drill holes in the caps and stick colorful straws through them.

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Aisle runners. Paint your mason jars any color you want, put a few blooms inside and place them along the aisle and voila! You have unique, colorful, and gorgeous aisle runners. You can save extra money by using silk blooms instead of real ones.

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Cake topper. A fun, new idea for a cake topper is a pair of mason jars on top of your wedding cake. Fill with the beverage of your choice, and add straws. You can get cute photos of the bride and groom drinking from their respective jars. A good idea is to fill the jars up with lemonade. This symbolizes making lemonade out of lemons, a testament to a couple who has lived a hard life beforehand but now has their happily ever after.

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Lights. A bit of water, a floating candle and a mason jar is all you need to make some naturally twinkling lights on your wedding day. You can hang them on the top of a bird cage, place them with a centerpiece, or line them along food tables.

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Favors. Hot chocolate, cookie ingredients, brownie ingredients, etc. can be put in a mason jar measured appropriately. Attach a tag with the liquid ingredients necessary and the recipe and voila! You can also include other treats, like tiny mints with the tag saying “Mint to be”, or fill it with popcorn with the phrase “thanks for popping by!”

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Candy bar. Use mason jars to hold candy for your candy bar. Line them up on a table and display them for all to see. Provide spoons or ways to scoop out and sample the candies. A candy buffet is great for a couple with a sweet tooth.

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Crafts. Fill your mason jars with crayons, chalk, markers, etc and have coloring books, crossword puzzles and more at an activity table for the kids.

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Desserts. Some weddings have a “just desserts” reception. These are perfect for mason jar treats. There are mason jar cakes, crisps, pies, brownies, even ice cream.

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Meals. You can offer compact meals and snacks in mason jars. You can attach plastic silverware with a ribbon or rope. For a carnival theme, you can offer popcorn and candy as snacks, and fruit salad for brunch themed weddings. For meals, you can fill up on potato salad, egg salad, tuna salad, soup, spaghetti, macaroni, and more.

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Do you have any ideas on how to use mason jars in your wedding that aren’t listed? Comment below and share your wisdom.

 

Frugal Food Truck Wedding

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Are you unsure of how to save money, but also have good food at your wedding? Are you not too picky about what foods you eat, even at your wedding?  Do you have it in your budget to rent a truck and the owner/cook that comes with it? Here is an idea; hire a food truck!

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A food truck can be a simple, easy way to take care of the food at your wedding. It’s reassuring instead of worrying about flies going after your outdoor buffet, or paying waiters at your indoor reception or worrying about a potluck wedding food getting cold. The food is cooked on site in the truck, the ingredients are already in there when they arrive on scene, and people can order what they want and have it made fresh and on-the-go!

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Food trucks most often compliment these wedding themes:

Carnival theme. Serve up cotton candy and popcorn as well as fast food and you’re all set! If you can’t afford a food truck, you can always use a food truck or use a food stand.

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Hippie theme. Along with chalkboards and mason jars, a food truck makes a great accent to the wedding.

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Mexican theme. Hire a Mexican food truck to have all the spicy food you can handle! Great for states that are close to the Mexican border, also for Mexican weddings, South American weddings and weddings in Spain.

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Picnic theme. Spread out blankets on the grassy earth and eat up your food truck goodies close to nature.

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Pastel Vintage. Vintage weddings as well as pastel themes can go very well with food trucks. Food trucks are a fun, easy way to keep all the food sheltered and in the same place.

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Rustic Chic. It can add a fun twist to an old-fashioned wedding. Food trucks can even have some gourmet meals and appetizers served up to your guests!

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Italian theme. You can even hire a food truck that specializes in Italian food such as pizza and pasta! The options are endless!

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The steps to having a successful wedding with a food truck in it:

  1. Decide your wedding theme. Are you having a carnival theme? Green wedding? Vintage style? Make sure you know your theme if you want to have one.
  2. Look up local food trucks in your area. Check the prices, the types of food offered, even the color of the truck if you want it to go with your wedding decor.
  3. Make sure wherever you’re having your wedding accepts food trucks on their property. Most venues will discourage it or have you pay a fee for bringing your own food if they offer their own food. Public parks should be checked when you get your license, as some don’t even allow tents to be erected or barbecues, so this may apply to food trucks as well. This is why food trucks often go best if it’s on a friend, your, or a family member’s private property.
  4. Sample some food from your final food truck choices. Get some meals and see how you like them.
  5. Choose the cheapest you can while sticking to the type of food that you want. Talk to the vendor, book them on your wedding date, and make sure the cook and servers will be there as well.
  6. Make a meal plan with the food truck so they will know what the guests will eat, and how many will be there. Decide if you are paying for every one’s meals or if the guests will pay individually for their own food.
  7. Have a fantastic wedding with little worries on the food!

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Have you had a food truck at your wedding? Do you have any advice to offer engaged couples and brides-to-be? Share your comment below!

How to do a cheap last-minute wedding

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Not everyone can plan a large wedding and take years to pull it all off. Some couples have a change in circumstances that makes for a rapid wedding. Whether a family member got sick, the bride or groom is terminal, or the venue cancelled last minute; you need to know how to pull everything together last-minute. This is true even if you have a week or less to get married. But can you pull it off without having to spend an arm and a leg? It’s possible, and here’s how.

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Go to church. Are you a church-goer? Are you baptized? Simply ask your local preacher, pastor or priest if they are available for a quick ceremony. They often charge a fee of about $100 for officiating, and you get beautiful wedding photos inside a church.

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Ask a friend. Can’t find an officiant last minute? Ask your friend to become one. They can easily get ordained online free of charge. Ideally this will be done at least a few days before the wedding so the friend can register with the clergy and ask overnight shipping of credentials.

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Grocery store. Want a reception afterwards? Even if it’s very small, you can get cupcakes, a cake, and ready-to-serve dishes. You can buy a cooked chicken and fresh veggies, fresh fruit, even pre-packaged veggies and dip.

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Potluck. Invite your friends and ask them to bring their favorite food or beverage. This way everyone is sure to have food to eat.

Backyard. No venue? No problem! Have the wedding in your backyard, front yard, or even a friend’s land. It’s no muss, no fuss, simple and easy.

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Garments. Everyone has been to at least one formal affair in their life, even if it’s just the prom at high school. Bust out formal wear and wear that to your wedding. You can also ask your mother for her wedding gown if you wish to wear it.

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Rings. Go to a jeweler or a pawn shop and buy rings that fit. Or you can buy rings later, some weddings don’t even have the couple exchange rings or wear rings at all.

Photographer. See if local professional photographers are available for your wedding day. Contact every single one and you’re more likely to have at least once positive response. If not, you can have family or friends take photos if there is no other option.

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Flowers. You can make a bouquet out of silk flowers at the dollar store, wild flowers in a field close by, or grab your favorite blooms at a florist. The choice is yours!

Music. The quickest, easiest and cheapest way to have the music you want is just to bring your iPod and possibly speakers, make a playlist and put it on repeat.

 

Cheap Destination Wedding Locations

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You’ve always wanted to get married somewhere exotic, tropical, or unusual. You don’t picture yourself getting wed in the same old country you grew up in, but in a new and exciting location. You look at your budget, and you wonder if you’ll have to wait years before that dream can come true. Well, look no further! Here are the cheapest destination wedding locations when you’re on a budget!

Image result for cuba destination weddingThese are photos of a couple that actually married in Varadero!

Cuba. By far the cheapest destination wedding country, Cuba is rich in culture, beaches and warm weather. Varadero is the city where Be Live Experience Varadero is located, and is listed as the cheapest location to host a destination wedding.

Image result for mexico destination weddingThis couple actually got married in Mexico as a destination wedding!

Mexico. The second-cheapest destination wedding country, Mexico is known for it’s amazing food, dance, music, culture and fun atmosphere. River Maya is the city where BlueBay Grand Esmeralda holds the next-best cheapest location for your destination wedding, and the cheapest in Mexico. Sandos Caracol Eco Resort is also located in River Maya and is breath-taking. In the popular tourist city of Cancun, Occidental Tucancun is a gorgeous venue to have your dream wedding. Also in Cancun, Riu Caribe is a beautiful, family-friendly space to hold your ceremony and reception.

Image result for destination wedding dominican republicThis couple really got married in the Dominican Republic in Punta Cana!

Dominican Republic. A fantastic vacation spot, the Dominican Republic is also very budget-friendly when it comes to vacations, destination weddings as well as honeymoons. Puerto Plata has the majestic Iberostar Costa Dorada where you can count on a dream-worthy wedding that won’t break the bank. Punta Cana has two beautiful locations for your destination wedding: Majestic Colonial Punta Cana which is the most frugal option of the two, as well as Riu Bambu. Both are laced with palm trees and will make you feel like you’re in heaven.

Image result for Jamaica destination wedding sunscape splashReal Sunscape Splash wedding in Montego Bay, Jamaica!

Jamaica. Rich with music culture, Jamaica is the place to be, especially during the popular summer months. Ranking #4 in the cheapest countries to have a destination wedding, Jamaica has two cost-cutting venues that don’t skimp on the luxuries. In Runaway Bay, there is the Jewel Paradise Cove Beach Resort & Spa, Curio Collection by Hilton that is all-inclusive and up to par with anyone’s standards. In Montego Bay, Sunscape Splash Montego Bay will have you marveling at the beauty of the country.

 

“Staycation” Local Honeymoon Ideas

Do you plan on having a simple wedding, and want a simple honeymoon to match? Did you have that huge wedding and want an easier honeymoon? Do you have a small budget for your honeymoon?

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What is a staycation? A staycation is when you take a vacation without straying too far from your hometown, saving thousands of dollars. It can be as simple as exploring a neighboring town or shacking up at the nearest city to see the sights.

Bed and Breakfast. Head to your local B&B for some R&R after the big day. The rooms are beautiful, private and quiet. A B&B makes for an ideal secluded getaway.

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Hotel. Pick a hotel in your town or the neighboring one (or in the nearest big city), and choose a room. Pick one with a pool, hot tub, and whatever amenities you’d like.

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Go on a tour. Plenty of cities offer tours of the city and of historical sites. Book one for your honeymoon. If you live by a river or canal, boat tours are often offered as well.

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Camping. Take your newlywed with you to go camping and enjoy some private grounds and activities. If you’re outdoorsy, go in a regular tent. If not, you can bring your own trailer-tent.

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Glamping. Rent an RV, trailer, or mobile home to bring to a campsite. Pick one that has showers, bathrooms, a beach, and activities for you to enjoy. Glamping stands for Glamorous Camping. Often it can include renting a chalet, summer home, cabin, etc for the weekend.

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Backpacking. Hike to the nearest hill or mountain and go backpacking. Explore, be adventurous, and don’t forget your camera.

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Road Trip. Go where the road leads you and get lost together. You can look at a map and find local events you can attend and enjoy.

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What did you do on your frugal honeymoon? Comment below!

 

Frugal and Unique Wedding Invitations

Wedding invitations can all look the same after a while. Is your wedding unique? Do you want your wedding invitation to stand out? Here are 4 unique and frugal ways to make a unique wedding invitation.

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  • Make a snazzy wedding invitation online or design one yourself on your computer.
  • Once you have it ready, put the file on a USB key and head to your local Staples.
  • Choose a cardboard-like thick paper to print out your invitations on.
  • Then, with fine scissors, cut it up into puzzle pieces.
  • Put in an envelope and send if off to your first guest.

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Google how to make a wedding invitation fan and find an idea that suits you. These are cute, unique ways to provide an invitation as well as a cooling method for a hot summer wedding.

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Big fan of movies? Get a unique wedding invitation printed in a unique fashion. Highlight your love of movies by providing a movie ticket-like invitation.

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Have a game-friendly wedding? Make this unique Twister-inspiring invitation. No matter where the arrow lands, provide a piece of information about the wedding; the address, time, date, dress code, location, and more. You can also create one for the menu options at the wedding.

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Make these fun and frugal wedding invitations as well as save-the-date notes. Make sure they match! Incorporate them with your wedding theme colors and it’ll be perfect!

 

Frugal Bridal Shower Games

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A bridal shower is a gift-giving party held for a bride-to-be in anticipation of her wedding. The custom originated in the 1890s and is today most common in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Even though tradition dictates that a bridal shower should be held two months to two weeks before the wedding, I don’t see any reason why it can’t be planned before the two-month mark. While having a shower six months before the wedding may not be improper, it does seem a bit early for practical reasons.

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Preparation

  1. Pick a date.

    Showers should be held about two weeks to two months before the wedding. Earlier is better.

  2. Compile a guest list.

    As the host, you should set the number of guests you’re comfortable inviting. If the shower isn’t a surprise, consult with the bride about whom to include.

  3. Choose a theme.

    But only if you wish.

  4. Determine the location.

    It could be your home or a nearby venue.

  5. Buy or make an invitation.

    Is the shower a surprise? Be sure to clearly state that. You may also want to include registry information.

Four to Six Weeks Before the Shower

  1. Send invitations.
  2. Decide on decorations and centerpieces.

    One idea: Fill Champagne glasses with jelly beans in complementary flavors (coconut and pineapple, lemon and lime)—edible proof that two together can be better than each alone.

  3. Plan a menu, if necessary.

    For a light lunch, try sweet pea soup, tea sandwiches, and lemon squares.

  4. Prepare an activity.

    You could assemble a “bow hat,” yes, but think about other options. Consider hiring a fortune-teller or a tarot card reader, or even giving everyone temporary tattoos.

The Week Before the Shower

  1. Buy a gift.

    A good rule of thumb: Spend no less than $30 and no more than $50.

The Week of the Shower

  1. Shop for and prepare food, if necessary.

The Day of the Shower

  1. Make a gift-opening area.

    Under the guest of honor’s seat, place scissors, large trash bags, a notebook and a pen to record gifts and their givers, and sticky labels to help keep similar gifts (like platters or glassware) straight.

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Here is a list of frugal bridal shower game ideas for the bridal shower you’re throwing!