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Food for thought

There is a lot of uncertainty going on in the world right now, but don't let it discourage you. It isn't over yet, you can still have the wedding of your dreams, even if it isn't on your originally planned date. Just think about the finish line: you are going to marry the man you love.

Life may look a little different now, but you can still plan and I think we all need something to look forward to. So, let's talk about some things that you can start planning now, like your menu for example, now is a great time to discuss what you want to have to eat on the big day.

If you already know what type of food you want, like barbecue, Mexican, Italian, etc., then begin with what meats you want. I always suggest chicken first, it's safe, especially when you're feeding large group of people. You know your guests best, but not everyone will eat beef or pork, so I always suggest chicken as a good main dish. A second meat is always a good option though, gives your guests some options, especially if they have dietary restrictions. As for the sides, try to select, one vegetable and one starch to pair with your entree. If you select more than 2 of anything, it starts to get a little full on the plates, not to mention expensive. Lastly, a salad, possibly with 2 dressing options so your guests can choose.

Talk to your caterer on how they plan to serve the buffet line if you have 2 meats. For example, if the first wave of guests all select chicken, is the last half of the line stuck with beef? Ask them what their plan is to make sure that everyone gets a choice. This might mean you order 2 meats for your entire guest count (150 chicken and 150 beef) so that every guest gets both on their plates, just to make sure there is enough to go around. Yes, you could ask everyone to select an entree on their RSVP, but it makes it a little harder when doing a buffet line, especially if someone changes their mind that night or a unannounced guest shows up. You can consult with your caterer about this as well: Do they bring extra, just in case?

If you are concerned about guests that have an allergy or dietary restrictions, ask your caterer about one dish that will serve as an alternative option for all those guests. For example, a vegan, nut-free pasta, or a gluten free veggie medley. This way, you won't have to provide multiple meals, just one that covers all restrictions. When in doubt, consult with your caterer, they're the pros when it comes to menu selections.

My favorite menu items: Garden salad - The tomato, onion and cucumber on top dress it up a little; with ranch and balsamic vinaigrette. Stuffed Chicken (like Cordon Bleu) - gives your entree a little boost, I think. Mixed vegetable sautee - again, dresses it up a little with the variation and colors. Seasoned mashed potatoes - you just can't go wrong :). Served with rolls and butter. These are just my favorite examples to use.

And for dessert...CAKE!!!

As always, not every wedding is the same, so feel free to mix it up or get away from tradition. If you want to have a taco truck, do it! A Mac & Cheese bar? Heck yeah! This is your day, do it your way. This will be a great thing to check off your list right now.

Happy planning!

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