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You may do all the work, but let grillers enjoy their brief glory

Brides, make sure your wedding is important to people you hire for food, flowers and more.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013 - 12:01 am

Q: Whenever we cook out, my husband gets all the kudos, yet I do all the work! I get so irritated by this. Does this go on everywhere?

A: Oh, boy, does it ever! It is the lament of couples everywhere. I was just talking to my friend, and she was telling me the story about having some friends up to the lake for a cookout. She made the grocery list, went to the grocery, put it away.

She made the cocktails, the salad, the potatoes and cut the veggies to grill. She set the table, and she made the phone calls to invite people. Her husband simply grilled the chicken she had marinated.

It was a fun, fabulous meal with candlelight and lots of laughter. After the last of the wine was drunk and the napkins were put down, do you know what her friends said? “John this meal was wonderful! You are a great grill master! You're such a good cook, John. John, what is your secret?”

And do you know what John said? He simply said, “Thank you.” No, he did not say, “Oh, all I did was man the grill — she did the rest.” No, just thank you, smiling in all the adoration.

Does this strike home with any readers out there? It sure does in my house!

We just have to be happy knowing our friends probably know (unless they're total goofballs) you did almost every single thing.

So we will hold our tongues and give credit to the grillers. After all, they only get a few hours of glory a year. God bless them all.

Q: Do you have any tips for brides?

A: I have many, many tips for brides, but not enough space to write them all here. The main thing I want to say is to be gracious to the people who are working for you. The people you have hired want to do their very best, No. 1 because that is their craft, and No. 2, so you will give them a good reference.

But sometimes in life, you make a bad choice, and nothing you are saying gets through to them. Or perhaps they have their own vision of what they want for your wedding. (I am not talking about people who gently guide you to make wise decisions and who you know have good taste. Keep them close to you!)

I am talking about vendors who will not make the time to meet with you to go over the food or flowers. Those people who do not return your phone calls, texts or emails. People who call you days later and say, “Sorry, I am just so busy ... .”

If they are always telling you they are too busy, in my opinion, they are too busy to work for you. You want a florist or caterer who makes you feel special and super important during this exciting time. That is the kind of vendor you can trust.

The best people I employ for outside things are extremely busy because they are so good. Their services are sought after. But they never use that as an excuse for poor performance or communication, and they only bring it up if I ask. Hence, they make me feel as if my customer is the most important one they are working for. That is how you want to feel.

Next time: Weddings are the celebration of a lifetime. In the next column, I will write about many other issues a bride and her family should consider.

Laura Wilson, owner of La Dolce Vita in Roanoke, is a Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef. She answers questions in The News-Sentinel every other Tuesday. Have a question for Laura? Submit it to clarson@news-sentinel.com or call 461-8284. We’ll pass on questions to Laura. This column is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinion of The News-Sentinel.