Ot- Long Rant!!!- Event Done At Cost!

Lounge By gilson6 Updated 22 Nov 2005 , 6:08pm by PerryStCakes

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gilson6 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 2:29pm
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Okay, this is probably going to end up to be a very long rant. Sorry.

As I have mentioned before - I'm a caterer as well as a cake decorator (well, a wannabe cake decorator - not that good yet!). I have offered to do my Sunday School Christmas Party at cost. I try not to do this too often because then people actually expect you to all the time. The cost ended up being $16.00 a couple. The food being served was: Ginger Glazed Chicken w/ Pineapple Salsa, Twice Baked Potatoes, Broccoli & Rice Casserole, Green Bean & Bacon, Garden Salad w/ 2 homemade dressings and dinner rolls. This was for 40 people. Understand, I normally charge $16.00 per person for this meal. I was more than likely going to go in the hole. I put my heart into each event I do whether I'm getting paid for it or not and by the time the event is over with, I can barely walk from being on my feet so long and the pain is almost unbearable. We had one couple, when they realized the cost, decided that we shouldn't do this. So, each couple is going to be responsible for bringing one dish (which in all likelihood will cost $10-$15.00 anyway) and the leaders of the class (which my husband and I are one of them - there are 5 couples that are leaders) will be buying the meat. Each leader couple will be paying $20.00 each couple. To (excuse the saying) put the icing on the cake -- they still want me to fix the meat.

What would you do? My husband says that I'm not fixing it. I'm very upset and hurt. Our class voted on this and it was not my idea to begin with. I would have been satisfied just making 1 dish and actually enjoying the party. Now, how can I go knowing that someone (my Sunday School teacher wouldn't tell any names) feels that I was trying to cheat the class? By process of elimination, I'm sure that I have figured out who it is.

Thanks for letting me relieve my hurt and anger over this. Any comments are welcomed.

41 replies
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Cakeasyoulikeit Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 2:35pm
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I'm sorry. That's really tough. There is nothing worse that feeling your character is on trial when you know you are innocent! I don't have any suggestions of what to do, but I hope it all works out!! God Bless.

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lotsoftots Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 2:36pm
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That's why if I do something "at cost" I just provide them with a shopping list so they can actually pay the cost without them second guessing me. People have no idea how much things cost, in general. I'm so sorry they put you in this position. If it were me, I would not prepare the meat--that door has shut. I would just say that I had other obligations and can no longer be involved with that kind of time commitment, but would be happy to provide 1 dish to pass and give pointers, if needed, to whoever does prepare the meat. The "other obligations" would be maintaining my sanity and not harbor ill will! Good luck!

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tanyap Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 2:41pm
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Hi gilson6,

I am sooo sorry that you are feeling hurt...especially when you know in your heart that you were trying to do a nice thing by doing it at cost (or probably under cost). I do agree with your husband that you should not do the turkey. Without getting into any confrontation or any further uncomfortablness, I would just tell them that since you're not catering for the group anymore, you're schedule freed up to take another large catering order for the same day so you took it and therefore, will not be able to make the turkey...just do the minimum required to bring in "your share" of the pot luck meal. I think it's a subtle way to send the message that you won't be taken advantage of...but you should do very tactfully so that you don't appear petty (even though you might be inside!! icon_mad.gif ). It's really unfair in situations like this that when you stick your neck out for someone or something, sometimes you're the one left feeling uncomfortable and having to "mend the fence" event though some else is the "pot-stirrer" in the group.

Go check out my new post with the Happy Thanksgiving song...I think it's quite appropriate for you!! icon_smile.gif

Have a great day and SMILE!!

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SUELA Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 2:46pm
post #5 of 42

I agree with lotsoftots! $16 per couple, sounds yummy to me...and a deal. I am just surprised that 1 couple got to decide for the whole group....but to reiterate, you should not have to take on additional responsibilites after them saying no thanks. Stick to your guns!

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ge978 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 2:48pm
post #6 of 42

gilson6 - I also cater parties and events so I know what you are going through. I don't think anyone realizes the amount of time, money, effort, etc. that goes into these events. Things like this have happened to me more times than I can count and its very frustrating.

I agree with lotsoftots - I don't think you should prepare the meat...if it were me I couldn't do it without it making me more angry. I would just politely decline. I wish I had some great advice for you, but nothing is coming to me..maybe after I've had some coffee icon_biggrin.gif

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stephanie214 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 2:48pm
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gilson6,

Sorry that you were put in this situation.

I agree with your husband not to let you do the cooking.

There is always one person that is a trouble maker and loves to keep something going.

You did nothing wrong and should not feel bad about this situation.

Hold your head up high and have a good time thumbs_up.gif

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goodcakefairy Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 2:52pm
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in every group, there's someone who's not happy unless something is stirred up. They're always convinced they're being taken advantage of, even when you're doing them a favor. Being unwilling to pay $16 per couple is just ridiculous. You couldn't go out to dinner with $16!!

I usually solve this problem when I'm making someone a cake at cost by presenting them with a priced shopping list. when they realize that it's not just "flour and eggs" (I hate when people say that!) they either go somewhere else or shut up.

I certainly wouldn't cook anything beyond what the other class leaders are doing. If you're not trustworthy enough to cook a full meal for them, you're certainly not trustworthy to be their meat cook. Ungrateful jerks.

As for future parties, if you're still feeling up to cooking for them, present them a priced shopping list before planning starts. If they don't agree to it, say you're sorry, but you can't be expected to pay for the party.

I'm sorry your feelings have been hurt. Hey, we like you.

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Randa_000 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 2:53pm
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Hi Gilson6,

Unfortunately this world is made up of alot in ungrateful folks. icon_surprised.gif I agree with your DH, do not do any cooking, shoot I wouldn't even go...let them see what they are missing both in the food and the company...you offering dinner to them at cost is such a wonderful gesture and it is their loss if they can't appreciate your generousity. You and DH should go to your favorite resteraunt that night...leave them to their sour-ness.

This is just my opinion!

Randa

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CarolAnn Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 2:59pm
post #10 of 42

Okay, I'm not a caterer but $8.00 per person doesn't seem too high to me for a nice meal out. I am going out today to shop for my families Thanksgiving dinner. I will easily spend $100, and I am not providing all the food for this meal for 11-13 people. I think it's sad when people want as close to a free ride as possible. I am all for saving money but why can't people consider the time and labor that goes into a job, whether it's a cake or a meal? The ingredients for either is far from cheap. Being a church function you would hope that it would be different but sadly that is not always the case. If it were me I think I'd pull out and only bring my dish to share like everyone else and let someone else do the meat. Otherwise I'd end up getting roped into the same kind of situation again down the road. So sorry this has happened to you. This kind of thing can create anxiety out the wazoo, so try to nip it in the bud and save yourself the future grief.
God Bless
Carol

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CarolAnn Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 3:01pm
post #11 of 42

By the way Happy Belated Birthday! Mine was the 10th.
Take Care,
Carol

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gilson6 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 3:04pm
post #12 of 42

Thanks for all the support! Sometimes, you just need to rant and relieve the pressure of anger and hurt.

I'm not sure what the outcome of this will be. The party is December 3rd. The Sunday School teacher is going to talk to the other leaders in the group and will let me know what is decided.

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JennT Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 3:51pm
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I, too, have catered small events/parties, & even a wedding once....so I'm familiar with this kind of situation, & the something for nothing type of attitude that people seem to suddenly acquire when faced with actually paying a friend for a service. thumbsdown.gif

This is my advice: Since the class voted on the whole thing to begin with, let them vote again! After all, they are the ones who will be paying for it....not just the one couple who vetoed it once you gave them a price. I would type up a little "Spec Sheet" of what you planned to serve....then make sure you include what you normally charge for such a meal and what you'd charge them....($16/per person VS. $16/per COUPLE). You need to point out that distinction. Heck...if you go to a fast-food place, you can't get out of there without spending around $6 per person for a combo-meal!! So $8 per person is a STEAL for a meal like that! I'd present to the Sunday School class these options: 1-Bring your own dish (they'd spend at least $10 on that, I hope) or 2- For just a few dollars more, have a complete meal prepared for and catered to you! No dishes to take home, no clean-up, etc. All they'd have to bring is their smiling faces!! lol With all there is to do during the Christmas season, I'd think people would jump at the chance to go to an event like this without having to do anything for it except pay for what they eat!! And a couple can't even go on a DATE for $16!!!!! I'd point that out too....good grief...some people!!! icon_mad.gif icon_razz.gif It's SIMPLE: Spend their money AND have to prepare a dish -OR- Spend their money(about the same amt.)and have it ALL DONE FOR YOU!! A no-brainer to me...lol.

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ellepal Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 4:19pm
post #14 of 42

Wow....ok, 8.00 a person for Taco Bell= expensive.

8.00 a person for a gourmet catered meal=you lucked out!

I can't believe the nerve of people. I'd offer to donate a dish.....forget doing the meat. Have them go to honey baked ham for the meat and pay for it.

I wish I could get that kind of meal for 8.00!!!

Sorry people are so rude, ungrateful and stubborn. icon_sad.gif

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alracntna Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 4:23pm
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i do not cater but this situation can be applied to anything,

EX: I loaned my inlaws my very nice gas saving car when theirs stopped working. with the understanding that they bring it back to me every morning so that i have something to take the kids to and from school and so i am able to go to the store and what not during the day. in the evening they take it because then my DH will be home and i will have a ride with him for what ever i need.

let me add that they live in the next town over.

we had just put new tires, rebuilt motor and transmission on this car that i love.

this has been about 4 months now since i said they could use it and they have not even tried to fix their car or get another one. i keep the insurance on it when something brakes or a light comes on they bring it to my DH to fix. all they do is put gas in it and not very much. every time i get in it i have to put gas before i can go any where.

i guess my point is as long as you let someone take advantage of you they will. and just because they are Christians does not mean they will be any different. being involved with the Church when my FIL was a pastor i have come to realize that Christians are just as bad about taking advantage as non Christians.

so sorry you had to go through this, but we all learn with each time something happens and next time this comes up just politely excuse yourself.

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Cake_Princess Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 4:39pm
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Quote:
Quote:

The cost ended up being $16.00 a couple. The food being served was: Ginger Glazed Chicken w/ Pineapple Salsa, Twice Baked Potatoes, Broccoli & Rice Casserole, Green Bean & Bacon, Garden Salad w/ 2 homemade dressings and dinner rolls.





DANG $16 per couple for all that? And they passing it up? Sheesh I vote for forgetting about the dinner and taking them All out to McDonald or something. Maybe then they will appreciate the offer you had on the table.

As for the meat, your hubby is 120% right. Take the one dish you agreed to and that's that. I can't believe church folk that will go behind another member's back and talk about them. Not only that, lie about them. Five lashes with a wet noodle for the person that claimed you are ripping them off.

Yes, I would have made up a list of all the ingredients and the prices. Then work it all out per couple/person for them. Let them see what a deal it is. Sheesh I go get a double charbroiled burger, fries and Soda combo and that's almost $7.



Princess

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gilson6 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 4:42pm
post #17 of 42

You guys have all made me feel so good! Thanks!

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itsacake Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 4:43pm
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I wouldn't cook the meat for them, and I would't give them the opportunity to change their minds and have you do the whole thing at this point either. They had their chance! Consider yourself well out of having to do this. I don't think $16.00 EACH is enough for a dinner like that! Texas must be a huge amount less expensive than California!!!! If the gorup has to buy already prepared meat and devide up the cost, then they should have to do that and SEE what it REALLY costs!! The excuse that people dont' know what food costs is kind of lame. People have to grocery shop to feed themselves and must know that turkeys and green beans and bacon aren't free!

I'd go and be my MOST charming and enjoy the fact that I didn't have to work. I'd be even more charming to the people who I think nixed the whole thing. It was just SO considerate of them to want to spare you the work so you could enjoy the party-- Let them try to figure that out...... (I need a sarcastic smiley face here!)

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bubblezmom Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:08pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gilson6

I have offered to do my Sunday School Christmas Party at cost.




You planned a very elegant meal. Perhaps they were expecting something simpler and cheaper? I'm really dismayed that the board seems to think you're sunday school group is a bunch of awful, ignorant and ungrateful people. Geez! Maybe they thought you would just fix some chicken drummies and veggies and call it a day. It just sounds like you planned to big of a dinner for your groups budget. Did you ask what the they expected to pay for the meal?

Volunteer to do whatever your heart tells you to do. This is just one meal. Try not to allow yourself to be hurt and angry simply because they did not want to spend the money whatever their reasons. Would you be hurt and angry if a customer decided not to hire you?

Hugs!

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cindy6250 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:10pm
post #20 of 42

My 2 cents worth---I totally agree that you should NOT cook the meat. Just prepare a dish and do exactly what itsacake said...

I work in a large office and have participated in many a potluck dinner (NO MORE)!! My guess is the person who balked at 16.00 per couple wants to bring a bowl of green peas or the like...There is always someone who wants to eat like a king and bring 2.00 worth of food....UUUGGGHHH!!!!
Plus, our Supervisors are notorious for inviting the entire Command Staff (police dept) and letting them dig in before those who prepared the meal get to eat and of course none of them brings anything to contribute but their appetites...

So, now the only time I will participate is for catered meals that take place when the Command Staff is off...heehee....

Good luck and I hope you can still go to your party and have a good time. I know you were doing this out of the goodness of your heart and that hurts when your kindness is rejected, even by one person. But you are the better person for your kindness. Happy Holidays!!

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gilson6 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:15pm
post #21 of 42

This is the type meal we have every year. I discussed this with my Sunday School teacher before we even discussed price. We normally have everyone bring a dish and then the leaders buy the meat. I guess we've spoiled some people in the class by doing it that way. This is the type meal they expect every year.

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tanyap Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:19pm
post #22 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by alracntna

i guess my point is as long as you let someone take advantage of you they will. and just because they are Christians does not mean they will be any different. being involved with the Church when my FIL was a pastor i have come to realize that Christians are just as bad about taking advantage as non Christians.




...I was reading another post this morning and was amazed at how sensitive people were this morning until I read this post and find that my own feathers are ruffled...maybe because it's the beginning of the holiday hustle & bustle but I am probably a minority here being a non-Christian but this comment makes me feel like your perception is that all non-Christians are ill-mannered and I do hope that you typed that in the heat of the moment and truly don't feel that way.

Sorry to everyone else - I couldn't let that comment pass without at least raising the issue...I am an Indian & Hindu who was born and raised in this country as an American but ever since 9-11, I have been extremely dissappointed with an overwhelming number of people's lack of knowledge or willingness to understand and respect others' cultures and traditions and that the basic fact that we're all human beings and that morality has nothing to do with religion because ALL religions teach you about morality and it's flaws of human nature that distort religion, not the other way around.

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gilson6 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:26pm
post #23 of 42

I didn't take anyone's remark that way. I think as Christians and even as non-believers we expect Christians to be above such behavior. We hold them to a higher standard then we would anyone else because they profess to be Christians. I make this mistake continually. I worked for 2 years with a man in our church. By the end of the 2 years I was very disillusioned on how a Christian should act and I'm someone that was raised in church from the time I was 3. This man was a deacon (and still is) in our church and he had a way of acting at work that you would not see him act at church. Please understand that I personally don't feel like this couple that didn't want to pay this amount was holding anything personally against me -- they just don't understand the concept of what a party of this size would cost. Yet, I know this couple goes out for meals on Saturday evening with her family and Sunday afternoon and Sunday evening with members of our church. In fact, we were once very personal friends of this couple and know how much they spend every week on meals at restaurants. They don't entertain in their home and have no concept of entertaining and the cost of entertaining.

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gilson6 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:28pm
post #24 of 42

I would like to apologize for the curve that this post has taken. I in no way wanted to offend anyone. This was just a way of getting some hurt and anger off my chest in a way that would not anger anyone else.

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cindy6250 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:29pm
post #25 of 42

tanyap,

I totally agree with you. And that's all I'm going to say because I could really get long winded on this topic.....

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CranberryClo Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:32pm
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But I think the point is that Christians shouldn't be held or hold themselves to a higher standard than any other. Each person on earth whether Christian, Hindu, Muslim, Jew, Sikh, Buddhist, agnostic or atheist needs to be kind and do no harm - each person must be held to a higher standard. If one believes that only Christians should be held to a higher standard, it's as if one is saying that the other religions are less valid or less real. To distinguish by religion is insulting to those are not. I'm not Christian (a conscious decision after being raised Roman Catholic) and I read that post the same as the Tonya - I hold myself to a high standard and it's got absolutely zilch to do with what I believe.

Closing the can of worms -
Christy

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gilson6 Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:36pm
post #27 of 42

Please close the can of worms!!!!

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tanyap Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:54pm
post #28 of 42

gilson6,

I don't think that you should apologize for the way the post turned out....you came here looking for some support & "emotional therapy"and I had not intended to take away from that.

I'm not angry or anything like that. This is a public forum and everyone's entitled to their opinions...as am I and therefore was just voicing my own.

I am sorry for taking it off-topic and did not mean to diminish your pain in any way.

Tanya

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doc_farms Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 5:56pm
post #29 of 42

Gilson6 - I agree and think that you should make your one dish and enjoy not having to stress about the party. That is all this is about. I like the idea of telling them that since they had freed up some of your time, you have since made another commitement and cannot prepare the meat, as much as you would love to help them out. Then go and smile, and really just have a good time. I'm sure that these are people you generally enjoy, so just focus on that. Sometimes people can be really frustrating. Good thing it's not all the time icon_wink.gif

Good luck and let us know how the night ends up afterwards.....

Hugs,Miah

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daranaco Posted 21 Nov 2005 , 6:43pm
post #30 of 42

I'm new to CC and I'm a bit nervous about posting my thoughts b/c I don't want anyone to develop pre-conceived notions about me! I'm going to offer up a differing opinion.

Here are my thoughts on your dilemma.

I think that you need to take the high road in this situation. Had the entire dramatic series of events not happened (meaning it was always set up to be a potluck), and they asked you to make the meat, would you have done it? I imagine that you would have b/c you sound like a generous, giving person. If that is the case, then I think you should still do it.

It sounds like just 1 couple is making the trouble. The rest of the leadership board is caught in the middle. The character of the other couple has been revealed. Now show them your character. I bet you'll win over the respect of a lot of the leaders. And in the future, they won't let the wet-blankets have so much influence.

Don't let 2 people negatively impact the party for the other 38. And in fact, if you make the meat, make it the most amazing tasting and looking dish you've ever made. The leaders will always wonder what the rest of the food would have been like had you catered the whole event. You may even find new customers at the party.

Whatever you decide, I wish you the best of luck!

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