Marriage en How the Business of Weddings is Changing with the Times <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">From bridal shops to reception venues and more, <a href="">weddings are big business</a>. Whether you’re part of the wedding party or simply attending the event you can expect to shell out some serious coin.</span></p><p>Business contributor Rebecca Harris revealed some facts that show weddings are changing.</p><p>One of Harris's discoveries was that June and September are now the most popular months for marriage.</p><p>"15% of US weddings take place in each of those months. It used to be summer time but as you can see from a day like today, people are really selecting to get married in cooler months."</p><p>The cost for weddings is also at a record high as Harris reported the average cost of a wedding in the United States is $30,000. With these rising costs the wedding business now makes up $40 billion of the economy.</p><p>Among other changes are the ages of the people getting married. The average age of a bride is 29 while the average age of a groom is 31 and Harris noted, "It used to be much younger."</p><p>Another major change is the increase of destination weddings, which now make up 24% of all weddings. But as Paul Guggenheimer pointed out this increase in destination weddings means a higher cost for the guests.</p><p><strong>Check out these websites and ideas for keeping wedding plans local:</strong> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 21:35:41 +0000 Essential Pittsburgh 33020 at How the Business of Weddings is Changing with the Times Managing Money As A Couple <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">We’re in the midst of wedding season, and for many people, marriage is the first time they ever have to consider <a href="">managing money with someone else in mind</a>. </span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">As Chairman and CEO of </span><a href="">BPU</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"><a href=""> investment firm </a>and a member of the Board of Directors of the Pittsburgh Chapter of the <a href="">Financial Planning Association</a>, Paul </span>Brahim<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> helps clients make sound financial decisions to fit their lifestyle. </span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">When it comes to couples, this can mean he has to be part adviser, part relationship therapist. Brahim<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> </span>helps couples manage money at all stages of life, and one of the largest groups he </span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">advises are those who are near retirement.</span></p><p>Brahim shared one experience where one spouse was a "hard-charging" corporate business man, who then found himself retired, and home all day with his wife. Brahim said the sudden extra time together was hard on the couple. Thu, 19 Jun 2014 20:19:53 +0000 Essential Pittsburgh 31225 at Managing Money As A Couple Conscious Uncoupling and Finding A Way to Divorce Without Courts <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">If you follow celebrity news, one story which made news last week was&nbsp;</span><a href="" style="line-height: 1.5;">Gwyneth Paltrow’s divorce from Coldplay musician Chris Martin</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">.</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> The news was especially notable because of a term they used to describe the breakup - “</span><a href="" style="line-height: 1.5;">conscious uncoupling</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">.” The phrase raised eyebrows in the relationship counseling and divorce industries.</span></p><p>Paula Hopkins, a divorce attorney who specializes in <a href="">collaborative law </a>in the Pittsburgh area had never heard of conscious uncoupling until Paltrow’s announcement. But following the announcement, Hopkins found quite a bit of information about the term. Wed, 09 Apr 2014 19:57:20 +0000 Essential Pittsburgh 27276 at Conscious Uncoupling and Finding A Way to Divorce Without Courts Traditional Gender Roles Playing Smaller Role in Modern Matrimony <p style="margin-left:.5in;">Watch out June and Ward, traditional marriage is rapidly evolving and research indicates that typical gender-based expectations in the household are becoming obsolete for couples as they make the decision to marry or cohabitate.</p><p style="margin-left:.5in;"><a href="">Dr. Connie Lappa</a>, psychotherapist and adjunct professor at Robert Morris University and The University of Pittsburgh and <a href="">Dr. Christine Whelan</a>, visiting Assistant Professor in the University of Pittsburgh Department of Sociology share their findings on modern matrimony and the most successful relationships.</p><p style="margin-left:.5in;"> Mon, 15 Jul 2013 19:33:17 +0000 Katherine Blackley 13147 at Traditional Gender Roles Playing Smaller Role in Modern Matrimony