After a whirlwind of events in 2020, Brandilee Tacbian, now Ms Femling, finally got married on her home island of Kaua’i in late May. She started booking venues two years ago, before facing obstacles during the pandemic.
Femling booked her wedding package through Sheraton Kaua’i Resort’s event planner in October 2019. She has her tents, music and flower arrangements ready for her original wedding date, May 23, 2020, before the global turn of events in March 2020.
“At first we heard about COVID-19, then we were living in California at the time,” Femling said. “And then my job, all of a sudden – I was working for a school district – they shut it down. And then my husband’s job was also like: “everyone has to go home”. And we’re like, ‘what is this?’ So both of our jobs were like ‘don’t go back.’ “
As soon as confinement began in California, Femling called the coordinator of her event on Kaua’i.
“So we call Chelsea Schroeder, she was the event coordinator at the Sheraton,” Femling said. “Because, I mean, back then, too, she was like, ‘Oh, I don’t even know either.’ And it hasn’t even hit Hawai’i yet – it was already getting big in California. I think we scheduled it for July, I think we pushed it back to July, then October. We have it. so pushed twice. And then when it was maybe like September was coming and a lot of the rules had changed. “
Many Hawaiian families have at least 100 to 200 family guests, and Femling said she has at least 150 on her guest list, which she had to try to reduce to 30 to meet restrictions and rules. COVID-19 Security.
“We can’t do it, because it was, like, too stressful,” Femling said. “We didn’t know what it was. There was no Hawai’i but they were getting really strict. And so I ended up canceling – she was super sweet, though. “
With a grateful attitude, Femling was first married in Idaho on October 10, 2020, where her husband’s family is from, and eventually married in Kaua’i on May 29, as her family couldn’t make it to Idaho. Although she had to cancel her wedding package with Sheraton Kaua’i, she said she gave her events coordinator a gift card for all her help.
During this time, she kept her original reservations with her photographer and her receiving music disc jockey, and allowed them to hold onto their deposits while finding a way to be thrifty.
“We just enjoyed a very small reception with my family, like 35 family members,” Femling said. “Mike Dandurand was the DJ we booked. The reception we have on Kaua’i – super local style, just a very small reception. So instead of asking him to give me back the deposit, I said, “Hey, can we borrow your sound system?” I do my best – the locals I love to give back to them.
Dandurand said that when dealing with the details before the wedding, couples have to reschedule it over and over again, especially the date, due to the different challenges they may face. “And all through that, Brandilee was one of those who had to change the date because of this and because of COVID, obviously. And she never really got mad or showed it. She stayed positive about it all and understood that everyone is going through it too, ”said Dandurand.
In the end, Femling planned and executed two small weddings, the first in Idaho and the modest wedding on Kaua’i with her grandfather as the officiant and her sister-in-law as the photographer who also created her bouquet for her. . “I want to thank everyone, my family and friends, and all the salespeople have been great,” she said. “They were kind and understanding. If anyone is planning to get married in Kaua’i, expect things to be expensive and do your research. There are a lot of COVID restrictions. “