With The Pawning Planners/Texas Twins Events Team, a Dream Event is one you can’t afford hence the “Dream” reference. The majority of our clients are low to middle class consumers who have nowhere else to turn other than me for their “Dream” to become a reality. Many never dreamed of receiving the gift of a Dream Event.
I’m contacted everyday by folks seeking a wedding officiant, anniversary, birthday party, funeral clergy, baptism or house blessing and although I offer deeply discounted pricing on my sister site www.texastwinsevents.com we often have consumers who cannot afford even our low cost price points.
To overcome the obstacle, The Pawning Planners was born out of necessity to ensure that anyone regardless of their income could enjoy a Dream Event! Yes, hard work is involved to make the “Pawning Process” work by stripping, staining and reupholstering items submitted for trades but, nothing in my life has ever been easy- I’ve never been lucky. Our Little Pawners, Maryssa and Makenna Mahaney love the Pawning Process too and are heavily involved with our wedding and event services as well as acting as flower girls and ring bearers or ushers in many of our ceremonies- they “work” for tips and flips of video games, dolls and antique toys.
Instead, I’ve been resilient and I’ve found a unique and diverse way to keep my boat afloat by working harder to overcome the adversity of financial restraints. It is well known that I sold my own personal property to fund all of my businesses which gives you a clearer understanding of how driven I am to reach these battle weary consumers who deserve a “Dream Event” for I am a Wedding Warrior who started Texas Twins Events as a Hospice Clergy assisting families with donated floral designs I had made as well as officiating the memorial. I saw a need within my community and, I found a way to address it by volunteering both my time and my talents for struggling families. You see, I am the person I’ve never met for a very good reason, I live my life for those around me rather than myself.
Due to the reality of a weak economy and struggling consumers seeking event services, we take trades from antiques to farm equipment and more in exchange for services that we then “flip” through Texas Twins Treasures after refurbishing, we recycle and sell traded items to cover the expenses of our Dream Events to keep costs low and customers happy! Occasionally, we hear a story about a family with no money and/or nothing that I can successfully “flip.” When this happens, I sponsor the event by selling items through Texas Twins Treasures to fund a “Dream Event” based solely on the families circumstances and timelines.
Most of our clients cannot afford beautiful bouquets, boutenniers, corsages or Centerpieces and chair bows and to “fill in the gap” I create them myself from my existing inventory and occasionally take floral designs apart in order to accommodate a request for a wedding color we don’t already have prepared. That’s called a Hillbilly HowTo ie: when you can’t afford to buy something- you “figure it out!”
I’ve been “figuring it out” for nearly four years on a shoestring budget with no outside funding. I spend hours making chalkboards, floral designs and Centerpieces. Yes, I’m that committed to my community and, my family supports my decision to give back by accompanying me on our many adventures across the state of Texas from road trips to rest areas- these twins travel baby!
Over the past nearly four years, I’ve officiated hundreds of weddings, funerals, baptisms and sponsored numerous charitable organizations and, many interviews later, I’m still asked why. The answer is simple- I’ve been POOR and unless you have, you will never understand the Redneck Reality of trying to give your son or daughter a beautiful wedding or event with no way to pay for it! Building an inventory that included floral designs, cameras and even suv’s to transport the team and items was a sacrifice for me but, it was something that I believed in enough to sacrifice my time, my possessions, and my life for I believe it is my destiny.
I struggled to give my son a beautiful wedding and, my niece too. You see, my husband was unemployed for over three years at the same time my sisters husband was unemployed which caused dire financial restrictions for our wedding budget. The solution? Do everything ourselves! That’s right, I understand these families because I faced the exact same circumstances and hurdles that they are and, in committed to moving beyond the financial limitations.
The need for affordable services and ceremonies is real and, I had to find a way to help those around me. It would include Redneck Reality, Hillbilly HowTo’s and Cowtown Creativity and, luckily, because I had traveled a path just short of poverty myself- I knew the importance of crawling over, around or through the loopholes surrounding the events industry that involved “one expense right after the other” for families.
From loaning wedding dresses that I had purchased from area thrift stores to creating our own flower girl poodle skirts for a Dream Event- perseverance is a great teacher at the resilience of myself and my team. While many of our events are not often “easy” or, without the occasional “bump in the road” we work so well as a team , that we “glide” right on through the obstacles placed in our paths.
No one else in the world would provide low cost or no cost services so, I decided to do so myself and with my handy team of adventurers- we handle everything from photography, to ceremony to floral designs and, our little Pawners, Maryssa and Makenna Mahaney also work for tips and flips as flower girls, ring bearers and ushers. That’s right it’s a “Family Affair!” This “family” of my Texas Twins Events/Pawning Planners Team each have a different personality and unique talent.
Our team is dedicated to crossing boundaries of money and instead we focus on giving back to our community and effectively giving the gift of a “Dream Event.” The Texas Twins Team reach back and lend a hand whether you have any money, or not. My journey has crossed paths with many unique families with heart touching stories of how they never imagined their own “Dream Event.”
Life isn’t always “simple” for struggling families who cant just write a check or “charge it.” Many families can’t afford to go out to dinner and much less afford a vacation or expensive ceremony. For these deserving families, myself and my team make their “Dream Event” a reality! When my husband lost his development business during the real estate crash in 2007, we had a beautiful home, nice cars and an upper middle class lifestyle. I would understand the issues of struggling consumers firsthand after experiencing it for myself and, I would sell my home that I struggled to save for 7 years, my furniture and anything else of value in order to start a business based on families that were wading through the same path of poverty that I had successfully “sailed out of” while grabbing as many families as I could save along my journey. You see, their stories touched my heart and I was willing to do whatever it took to accommodate these strangers. I’m not crazy but, I determined!
Over the course of the next three years- it would take everything we had while living frugally to survive. Perhaps if my son had not chosen to marry during this window I would have never known firsthand the challenges many families were faced with. However, I believe in fate and my belief that there had to be a way to help others would fuel my passion.
Perhaps we “wing it” now and then due to a tight budget but, we get the job done and exceed expectations by throwing in extras such as the flowers and photography to these families who thought they were getting a wedding officiant. Giving the gift of memories with beautiful floral designs created by me along with photos to remember their Dream Event is something families who found The Pawning Planners will cherish for years to come simply because I decided to build a bridge and cross the boundaries of money versus Dreams.
Involving my family and friends in this adventure allowed me to spend more time with them while also teaching them firsthand the importance of what we do and more importantly, who we do it for. These families and their stories are the basis for my memoir Travels of the Texas Twins which documents how I reached back and helped hundreds of strangers while giving them hope and compassion for others within their community.
Their stories all share a common bond of cut wages, exhausted unemployment benefits, sudden illness and job loss from a weak economy. I’m up for the challenge as I prepare for my next Dream Event from Fort Worth, Texas.
Wendy M Wortham