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Love

Memorable Mornings

Misty field of flowers on our wedding day. Photo credit: Clayton Austin

I’ve decided to share my wedding story with you in tiny snippets over the course of several Fridays, in hopes both that these small doses will be enjoyable for you and will help me wrangle my memories properly. On this lovely Friday, I figure I’ll start at the very beginning: the morning of my wedding day. The morning turned out to be one of those unexpectedly special moments of the day, after all, and the more that I think about it the more I realize it’s these times – the ones not yet touched by the shimmer of makeup or documented by a professional photographer – that I really want to remember. It isn’t easy to hold onto all these moments seeing as I was a barely functioning insomniac leading up to our wedding day, but somehow I do recall waking up from a short sleep that morning to the sound of my husband-to-be letting out an involuntary “aww” in the darkness of our hotel room. He’d just discovered the toy car and love note I’d left above the fireplace (a little tradition I have for marking special occasions together), and he tiptoed over to kiss me on the forehead before ordering me to fall back to sleep. This was an impossible order to obey, so I crawled out of bed and opened the bathroom door to find a room full of shower steam and one big heart in the center of the foggy mirror…

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Love

Togetherness Foreverness

A soldier and his girlfriend in Penn Station circa 1944

It has been 15 days since our wedding, and my husband is already boarding a China-bound red eye just to get away from me. Yup, I’m that insufferable…All kidding aside, if I hadn’t know about this Asian business trip several months in advance I think I probably would be drowning in paranoia right now and counting all the ways I’m apparently rapid-fire failing as a wife. It’s always easy to worry that we’re doing something wrong in our relationships after all, and the fact that married people tend to act like marriage is a secret club filled with transcendental experiences doesn’t exactly help me stave off these worries as a newlywed. I mean, am I alone in this or have you also heard innumerable accounts of “Marriage is the best!” or “You think it won’t change things, but everything feels different when you’re married!” – sound familiar? Well, as an unabashed newlywed I’ll just come out and admit to you that my life doesn’t feel all that different now than it did 15 days ago…

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Love, Travel

Wedding Week In Review

Bicycle beside a basket of lavender for sale at a restaurant in Carmel, CA

The past seven days have been some of the most unforgettable of my life. Part of the reason for this has been the milestones and the epic nature of Northern California’s scenery, but most of what’s singed these 168 hours into my memory has been the people who jam packed every single second with reminders of why I love them. Since you, my darling readers, are also some of the most important and lovable people in my life, I figured I would write this post in an attempt to share this time with you. I’ll start by telling you that days before spotting the above bicycle wheels in Carmel, my sweet and I drove a vintage Porsche to the San Mateo County Clerk’s Office to turn in our marriage license. With the wind whipping throughout the convertible’s open top and the misty, redwood mountains on every side, I felt like we were stars of an old movie…

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Love

Floodgates

Painted and engraved wooden heart on a garden gate in Half Moon Bay, CA

My husband (whoa now, that’s a surreal thing to write) texted me this photo while I was getting my hair done on the morning of our wedding. It’s an old gate to a random garden in Half Moon Bay’s town center, and – fittingly enough – a floodgate of emotions opened up inside me shortly after I smiled down at this image in the palm of my hand. The day proceeded to whirr by in what I can only describe as a happy blur, and I still find it hard to believe that the tiny, blissful wedding we’d put so much thought and planning into actually happened. The whole time – from the hairspray and curling irons to the exchanging of vows – was such an out-of-body experience, but I’m hoping I can collect my thoughts and tears long enough to write down our wedding story sometime over the next few days. One thing that’s both helping ground me in the reality of the experience and making me float in the clouds right now are the glimpses of our day that photographer Clayton Austin has already posted to his blog. I am so touched to read about and view our love story through the eyes of one of the most humble, tasteful and downright talented artists I’ve ever come across (never mind had the privilege of knowing)…So yeah, even though it’s all still an emotional blur to me, you can find some hard evidence of the most tear-inducing day of my life on the Clayton. Austin. Love. Stories. Blog.

Sending love and happy wishes your way, dear readers, as I search for words somewhere beyond the floodgates…

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Love

Sparkle and Sweat

Giant chandelier hanging over a street in an outdoor shopping center – only in LA, right?

I used to think there were few things more physically and emotionally uncomfortable than coming down with a fever in the summertime, but it turns out trying on your wedding dress while delirious with fever on a muggy July day takes the sweat-drenched cake…As you may have noticed from my sparse postings last week, I was sick. And, although I was eventually able to admit this and lock myself away with vapor rub and soup, I did not reach this level of honesty until after I’d shed a kiddie pool’s worth of sweat into my wedding dress. Did I mention I also screeched through Los Angeles traffic, got utterly lost amidst the picket fences of Pasadena, and then sprinted down ten city blocks with a four-foot-tall cardboard box under my arm in an attempt to make up time? I did not leap over shrubs or cause small children to spill their ice-cream cones as I ran, but I was so delirious and blinded by cardboard that – for all I know – a child may as well still be crying somewhere about the strawberry swirl I deprived her of. Spilled ice cream or not, I arrived at the bridal shop’s door forty minutes late, panting and feeling as though me and my battered dress box were utterly out of place beneath the shop’s numerous crystal chandeliers; this is to say, the glittery shop exemplified everything it meant to be a bride, and I embodied none of this…

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Love, Sweet Nothings

Sprawling Summers

Vintage bathing beauties celebrating Independence Day, via Pinterest

July 4th was always the holiday I romanticized most as a youngin’. I think it had something to do with the fireworks and the social acceptability of using gingham fabric with abandon. Checkered linens aside, I secretly harbored this dream of meeting a cute boy and watching fireworks together on our own private hill; on this secluded hill I wouldn’t have any surprise visits from the zit fairy and the aforementioned cute boy would want to do nothing more than hold hands and tell me he could see the fireworks reflected in my eyes. Ah, how quaint our teenage dreams seem from a distance; although my July 4ths never presented anything remotely like this scenario back then, I still feel wistful whenever thinking about this holiday…

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Love, Sweet Nothings

Perspective

My imperfect wedding shoes and veil atop a feature spread in Martha Stuart Weddings (Winter 2011) that just happens to be about the union of two men

Somewhere in a board room last Friday night the New York Legislature brought this country one step closer to granting civil rights to all of its citizens, and in a little corner of California a certain bride gained a tad bit of perspective. I had been feeling like the star of my very own prime-time miniseries about wedding stresses for the past few weeks and everything seemed to be pushing me into crisis mode (from the way my e-mail service has been deleting wedding contracts and contacts, to the daunting reality that I still haven’t had my dress altered, to the fact that I have yards of fabric and gads of combs yet no clue how to make my own veil). Hearing the happy news from New York, however, made me feel momentarily elated and then it made me feel guilty for letting things like color palettes and tailoring get to me when there’s a whole segment of our population who still don’t have the legal right to marry the people they love.

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Love

Dog Days of Dating

Letting my pup do all the smiling and talking for me in White Sands, NM

Back when I was a single lady I received unsolicited dating advice on an hourly basis. One such recurring tidbit of wisdom was that dogs do wonders for a person’s love life. I never had a chance to test this theory out because I didn’t get a dog until I was living with my fiancé, but I’ve recently come across some pretty staggering evidence that proves this piece of advice true. Namely: as I’ve explored the streets of my new hood over the past few days with my pup and a bunch of poop bags in tow, I’ve been hit on more times than I ever was in my dogless single life. These haven’t been sleazy guys hitting on me either (at least not for the most part), so I’ve decided dog ownership is second only to online dating as the best way to meet a mate. For anyone out there who still thinks mutt mojo is a myth, however, here are some tips for making doggie dates work for you…

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