I glanced at the clock briefly as the blaring ring of my phone took over the peaceful silence of my room. It was 5:45 am. I just knew someone in my family was either dead or maimed so I scrambled to pick up the phone and answer it before it stopped ringing. "hhhhello..h h h hello??," I whispered into my phone with all the energy I could muster, just knowing the bad news would be more than I could bear. "Is this The Penny Loafer?" sobbed a woman on the other end. In my confused state I said, "um.. yeah."
The woman proceeded to explain that her wedding was going to be happening that day and she had been notified by her caterer that they were starting on her order and needed to know what time she would be picking it up. She explained that when she ordered the food she assumed that it would be delivered and set up so when it was time for her 200 guests to enjoy the special menu she spent hours and hours meticulously choosing, she would be at ease knowing it was taken care of and would beautifully presented. Sadly, the caterer advised that they don't deliver and they thought she knew that it was up to her to set it up.
"My wedding is going to be ruined," she mustered through her tears," but a friend of mine said you might be able to help me." I asked her to hold on for a few minutes while I got up and could gather my thoughts explaining that I was sleeping and needed just a few minutes but I would do everything I could to help. I asked her to send me a quick text with her name and an alternate number in case we were disconnected and then I padded my way to the little girl's room and then my office.
"Are you there?," I asked. "Yes and I'm so sorry to call so early." Understanding that this is probably the most important day of her life so far, I assured her that it was ok and told her to take a deep breath, grab some kleenex and all the notes for her wedding and get to her computer. I threw on my hot pot to warm up some day-old coffee, flopped into my office chair and flipped open my laptop to see what was on the agenda for the day... it was open. It was approaching tax season and I deliberately left this day open so I could work on data entry and since it was a Sunday, my crew was likely enjoying a quiet day off.
I asked her, whose name I now knew as Sarah, to tell me about herself and her fiance` as a way to help get her in a peaceful place so she could get back on track with preparing for her day ahead. After confirming she had her computer fired up I had her send me everything she had and while I reviewed it I sent her a questionnaire that she could complete while we were on the phone.
After sorting through the details it was clear that it was pretty cut and dry and nothing out of the ordinary and her caterer happened to be located just 4 miles from my office. I was confident I could provide at least myself and probably my general manager since we had just spoken the day before and she said she was just watching the football game after church. It was 6:30 now and I knew she'd be up so I grabbed my other phone and beeped my GM to see if she was up for working a reception and asked her to try and pull together a crew of 5 by 3:00pm...she agreed.
Sarah and I chatted for another 25 minutes as I drew together the details and prepared a quote. I explained that it will be an unexpected expense but one worthy of making because it is highly probably that other tasks might have been overlooked. As it turns out, that was, in fact, the case.
Together we were able to identify that she needed someone to pick up the food, set up the buffet, tend to her guests, clear tables, tear down the buffet, clean the guest area, coordinate with the venue, dispose of trash, cut the cake, and help with hors d'oeuvres. She said she had all the plans in place for the food to be there and had completely overlooked how it was going to come together, assuming that the venue was going to handle everything.
We were able to create a service package at an affordable cost and provide her with all the services she needed and in the end, made a friend and had a new partnership with the venue who had no experience with our service.
Do It Yourself is a very trendy and affordable way to throw a party but often times a host or bride does not know what questions to ask and since it's so common, caterers and venues assume all things are handled. Sarah's circumstances are all too familiar and we are so proud to have been able to help her out.
If you are planning an event and doing it yourself, make sure to ask all the questions and if you're not sure of what to ask, let your planner, or the venue know that you are a first-timer, or give us a call. We are more than happy to give you pointers at no cost whether you use us or not. Because you deserve to enjoy the best day of your life, and it's our mission to help your dreams come true and bring your vision to life. xoxo