Dear Carson: Our son is getting married in May. As the groom's parents, we intend to pay for the rehearsal dinner in a nice Italian restaurant.
The number of guests has already grown to 45. Now the bride has announced that she will be inviting all of her out of town relatives to the rehearsal dinner. I wouldn't mind just the grandparents, but we're talking about 15 additional aunts, uncles and cousins.
We have never heard of this. Please, tell me, is this common practice? I would really appreciate some advice on how to handle this situation. -- Large Guest List/Small Wallet
Dear Wallet: The bride is being pushy and presumptuous.
However, pointing this out could result in a bad beginning for everyone involved. This is not common practice, as rehearsal dinners usually include the wedding party, parents, siblings, godparents and maybe grandparents.
Tell the bride this is too large a number for you to accommodate and invite her to help find an alternative way to entertain her out-of-town relatives. Perhaps another relative or close friend would agree to have a party for these folks the night of the rehearsal dinner.
Dear Carson: I am having difficulty trying to find out whether a return address should be on the outside of a wedding invitation. Please help me. -- Return Envelope Rule
Dear Return: You need to put a return address on the back of the envelope. How else could guests respond or know where to send wedding gifts?
Either have the envelopes embossed at the stationer's or order a personal embosser.
Dear Carson: I have what seems to be a major cause of conflict about what is proper contact between a future brother-in-law and sister-in-law.
The future sister-in-law is my girlfriend of 14 months. The brother-in-law lets his hands do the walking for him, especially when he gets a few too many drinks in him, which is just about all the time.
When I say anything about this I am accused of causing trouble. Please advise me. -- Resentful & Angry
Dear Resentful: It is the brother-in-law who is causing trouble, not you, when you object to his grossly inappropriate behavior. Ask him to meet for lunch or coffee, when he is sober, and talk to him in a firm, but inoffensive manner. Tell him how you feel and that you want him to stop such behavior.