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EAT CAKE FOR BREAKFAST

{A motto to live by.}

The first gift from our wedding registry arrived!!!! Our friend Brandi generously bought out all of the Kate Spade china items I registered for at 2am a few months ago. (It was a particularly stressful day of wedding planning, so after a few glasses of wine, I decided to do a “fun” wedding task, like registering. Even though, at the time, our wedding was over a year away. I’m not skilled at prioritizing.)

More and more frequently, happy little moments keep happening that remind me this wedding is real, not just a fantasy, and that package showing up on our doorstep was one of them. I felt like I was starring in Father of the Bride.

We deliberately put NO GIFTS! on our engagement party invitation, because we want our loved ones to look forward to all of our wedding-related events and not feel like they’re a gift grab. And, more importantly, because our engagement party was in L.A., that was a “destination party” for half of our guest list, and so many people traveled such a long way to be there — not to sound like a cheesy Hallmark movie, but having all the people we love in one room really was our gift.

Despite this, a few friends gave us the most beautiful things, and all came from such a place of love and knowing us so well, because I was too embarrassed to post my crazy, haphazard registry anywhere (I don’t know how Brandi sniffed it out! I bet she wondered why I registered for 6 macaroon-making trays and a lot of forks, but no plates!) I can’t wait to share those gifts, too, because each and every one of them is personal and perfect, and great if you are a wedding guest and are looking to give something special that isn’t on a registry.

I’ve had my coffee in this mug every day since it arrived. It makes me happy, because it reminds me that I’m getting married soon(ish.) And, if you know me, you know I consider frosting a food group and cake is at the top of my food pyramid, so this mug really speaks to my soul. Also, we had so many red velvet cupcakes left over from our party, I HAVE eaten cake for breakfast pretty much every day since… Practice what you preach, you know.

MOM’S NAKED INTERNET VIDEO

Every parent’s worst fear is that their child will put a naked video of themselves on the internet. Turns out, it’s also every child’s worst fear that their parent will put a naked video of themselves on the internet, too. I know this because that fear came true for me last night.

Tony and I were catching up on Ray Donovan just before midnight, Tony also scrolling through Facebook on his phone because he can never do just one thing at a time, when all of a sudden he muttered, “Oh God. Oh no. What?! Babe, did you see what your mom just posted?”

Of course I didn’t, I was too focused on the magic that is Jon Voight dancing to be trolling Facebook.

Tony paused the DVR and held up his phone, on which a 21-second clip was playing of my mom’s attempt at an ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. She was in the shower, it was framed far enough below her shoulders that she appeared to be naked and she was soaking wet, giggle-slurring “I’d like to nominate my beautiful cousin Monica, my beautiful friend Elizabeth, and my beautiful sister Carolyn.” Then she started laughing so hard I couldn’t understand what she was saying, and then the video stopped. THAT WAS ALL THERE WAS.

Frantic, I called my mom to ask what the heck was going on up there. This was past her bedtime! Five hours earlier, she’d been upset Tony said the word “d**g” (sounds like “pong”) in his ALS Ice Bucket Challenge video, and now she’s naked in hers? How many glasses of chardonnay had she had? And why did the video start after she’d clearly taken the challenge?!

She swore up and down that she’d only had “one” glass of vino with “lots” of ice because she was nervous about filming with a 24-hour deadline, and she was actually wearing a bathing suit but wanted to look naked to “out-funny” Tony being in his underwear in his video (and it was totally appropriate, anyway, because you couldn’t technically see anything, and also she was in the shower where people go naked all the time!) She also shared that she filmed a 2 minute-long video that showed her doing the challenge, but it was too big for Facebook to upload and she forgot to nominate anyone. So, sopping wet, she filmed a second video with her nominations, uploaded just that one, and called it a night.

She texted me the first, 2-minute long video. It was even worse/more amazing.

She’d styled her hair and was wearing dangly, formal earrings. Still seemingly unattired. Still seemingly drunk. She was speaking in a very slow, serious tone, like you might if a cop pulled you over for drunk driving and you needed to convince him how sober you were. It takes her about 15 seconds to spell out ALSA.org. Then, she explains that California is in a drought, so she’s going to get ready for bed using her ice bucket. She brushes her teeth. Cracks herself up as she rinses until she foams at the mouth. Covers herself in soap, which she has trouble with because she’s completely dry and it’s not spreading easily. Then she takes my dad’s wine bucket, which is full of ice and water, douses herself, and moans like she’s been hit by a dump truck. That’s where it ends.

I asked her what she was thinking and she said, “Your father thought it was great! He said, ‘That’s a wrap!’ and went to bed.”

Even if my mother is telling the truth and she wasn’t inebriated, my father was clearly in no state to make this judgement call, or he would not have allowed this to happen.

She really thought it was a good idea to leave it up, but I explained that strangers might not understand what a hilarious jokester she is (which she is - obviously) and they’d think she filmed it seriously, and it would probably end up on BuzzFeed or a late night talk show. She explained that she thought only her 58 friends, who know she’s funny and would never ever get naked online, would see it. Then, she asked, “Do you think Kim Kardashian had second thoughts about filming her video?!” I said, “Sleep on it.” Then I logged into her Facebook and took it down.

I’ve never felt more mom-ish, and if this is anything like what parenthood is actually like, I don’t want it. I can’t handle the stress. It makes wedding planning feel as zen as a yoga class in comparison.

I checked in this morning, and Mom was feeling slightly more reasonable, and decided it was best to keep the video private. Why? Because she felt that with her uncontrollable giggles, she didn’t want to even hint that she was making light of a very serious subject - she still wasn’t worried about appearing naked. (She’s really owning that one.)

In case you think I’m exaggerating, here is a screen grab:

{Imagine shrieking violins from a Hitchcock horror film here}

Whenever I have a bad day, I’m going to watch that video. It is the best/worst thing that has ever happened to me.

***Addendum, from Mom: The current copy is in a vault and will only see the light of day if it raises a million dollars for A….L….S….A….dot….org, because my daughter assured me this is the most horrifying shower scene since PSYCHO.

NINE INCH NAILS @ THE HOLLYWOOD BOWL

Our sweet friend Mark got the sickest box of all time at the Hollywood Bowl for last night’s Nine Inch Nails concert, and generously invited Tony and I. I thought this would be a good look to blend in:

I also thought a NIN concert would be the perfect opportunity to try that cute upside-down braid-bun I saw on Style Me Pretty:

{You can put a girl in a NIN concert, but you can’t take the girl out of the girl. Or something like that.}

I was wrong. I did not blend. Most of the people looked like this:

{My fiancé. His shirt has howling hybrid animals on it and he’s wearing sensibly comfortable shoes, not pictured.}

Regardless of my poor wardrobe choices, we had the best seats in the house and the best night ever. NIN is Tony’s favorite band of all time — he loves them as much as I love cake and lavish vacations. (Which is a lot.)

{Side note: Trent Reznor is super jacked. Tony pointed this out first, so it’s okay for me to admire.}

My Maid of Honor, Katierose, raged better than anyone:

{Do you see why I love her?}

And Tony and I got to enjoy an end-of-summer date night… The weather in L.A. lives up to its hype and it’s pretty perfect here all year long, but there’s something about that time of year when kids are going back to school and work is getting crazy again… Last night felt like a beautiful escape from all of it, at the prettiest outdoor music venue I’ve ever been to.

{Happy to be out with him, he’s happy to be thisclose to Trent Reznor.}

And it was even better, because we got to spend it with some of our best friends.

Tony’s dream of having NIN play our wedding might not come true (I think his other wedding dream, of having a Wang Chung cover band, is probably more realistic budget-wise - not sure which is a worse idea, though), but last night got me even more excited to dance all night with the people we love most in the world at our wedding. (Hopefully to a live band that we can both agree on, whose price doesn’t send my dad into cardiac arrest.)

LADIES NIGHT

{Me & my Maid of Honor, Katierose}

One of the best pieces of advice my mom gave me when I first started dating: Don’t ditch your friends when you land a boyfriend. They’ll be the ones picking up the pieces when you break up.

I don’t plan on ever breaking up again, but I think this advice applies more than ever when you get engaged; it’s so easy to get caught up in the melodramatic, panic-inducing decisions of which tablecloth to pick for your reception, or whether to serve mini lobster rolls or lobster corn dogs during cocktail hour, or have repeated nightmares about where your guests will park, that you forget to pick up the phone and see what (actually important) things are happening in the lives of your girlfriends. Especially when you’ve placed them in the indentured servitude of being in your bridal party.

I think the new advice would be: Don’t ditch your friends when you land a fiancé. They’ll be the ones listening to you cry about what your neck looked like in that one engagement photo, and you don’t want them to hate the crazed shell of a human you’ve become by the time this godforsaken party is over.

So, this weekend I got some much needed girl-time in with the platonic love of my life and my Maid of Honor, Katierose. (Maybe you remember her from our Ojai wedding location-scouting trip?)

Saturday night, we went to a Cinespia screening of There’s Something About Mary at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. If you live in L.A., these screenings are a must; if you don’t, they’re almost worth flying out for, they’re so fun. There’s a beautiful cemetery in the middle of Hollywood and in the summer, they screen movies every weekend. The gates open a few hours early and a DJ spins until the sun goes down and the movie starts, so you show up early with a picnic and wine, and gossip and people-watch. It’s right next to Paramount Pictures, so you have beautiful views of the Hollywood Hills, the Griffith Observatory and the dozens of palm trees surrounding the cemetery. It’s one of the things I love most about living in this city. 

{Cinespia @ Hollywood Forever Cemetery}

Our love loves of our lives were performing in the summer Groundlings show, giving us the perfect opportunity for a girl’s night. Katierose packed a suitcase full of pillows, blankets and pajama bottoms because she is a problem-solving genius, and I packed two containers full of cupcakes left over from our engagement party because I am food-obsessed. We broke out our pizza in line, and ended up talking for so long after the movie, we were politely asked to leave. It was the best night.

{Our grub stash}

And Katierose is such a good friend, she let me spend most of the night venting about the latest drama with our wedding location. And eat most of the cupcakes. (Not sure if that last one was so much that she let me, as it was I ate them before she could get to them.) I am the luckiest, to have girls like her in my life and bridal party.

{Kro, rocking a dress, pajama bottoms and blanket drapery… She pulls off this look better than the Olsen twins}

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY, MOM & DAD!

I know I’ve written a lot of anniversary blogs lately (The Dateiversary, The Unanniversary, my sweet grandparents’ 63rd anniversary), but today is my parents’ 32nd wedding anniversary, and I decided to write another anniversary blog, because I can’t think of a couple I know more in love than those two. Many people actively look for the opposite of the examples they grew up with, and so I know I’m very fortunate to say I really hope to build a marriage just like theirs.

My mom, Laura, and dad, Murry, met in December of 1979. My mom had broken up with her boyfriend the day before, Dec. 8th, and on Dec. 9th, went to an “interline party,” where several different airlines came together to throw a holiday party. She was a flight attendant back when they were “stewardesses,” and my dad was there with the specific purpose to meet one.

My mom, in uniform.

A mutual friend introduced them, knowing they both liked to write and were vegetarians. (Which I still find hard to believe; my dad is a good ol’ boy from Texas and I remain convinced he lied about this to get in with my mom.) My dad had a Fu Manchu mustache, gold chains, and a shirt unbuttoned all the way down to his belly. My mom recalls, “He looked like Mr. T, I guess. I thought, ‘This guy is so not my type.” My dad reminisces, “I had some velour shirts and stitched boots that were really neat.”

They dated for nearly 2 1/2 years, all long distance. Because she worked for an airline, my mom flew for free and would visit him whenever she could. He would always meet her at the airport with champagne and roses. Every. Time.

They both wanted a family more than anything. They loved to read, camp, hike and host potlucks. They shared a sense of humor and the same life goals. They adopted two dogs together, and my mom eventually started leaving bridal magazines around the house.

My mom and Freddy, the greatest dog my parents have ever had.

On one of my dad’s trips to see her, at the airport as he was about to board his flight home (that was back when you could walk your loved ones all the way to their gate), my dad stammered out “Would you… Would you…” And my mom barked, “Would I WHAT?!” And my dad asked “Would you marry me?” My mom’s version of the story is that she sassily replied, “Let me think about it,” and waited to shout “Yes, I will marry you!” until the very last moment before he walked down the gateway. His response? “Okay. Don’t tell anyone.” Then he got on the plane and left.

Once he’d had a few hours in the air to think about what he’d done, my dad proceeded more traditionally. He bought a diamond and had a ring made just for her, and then formally asked my grandpa for her hand, to which Grandpa Gil hollered, “POP THE CHAMPAGNE!”

They got married a few months later, on August 21, 1982. My mom says this was the only day the church was available… Even though it just so happened to be her older, then-unmarried sister’s 30th birthday. (A bit of a bridezilla move on the part of someone who is so vocally against bridezillas, if you ask me…) My mom’s beautiful wedding gown was re-made from an opera house costume, and they had a live jazz band. Their first dance was to “How Deep Is the Ocean,” and they honeymooned in Hawaii.

I’ve written separately about my mom and my dad, and what incredible parents they are, but I think the best gift they gave my brother and me was the example of what a loving marriage looks like. When he got home from work, he would always hug and usually dance with my mom, before seeing what kind of trouble Billy and I had gotten into; they always made a point to take time for each other, keep dating each other.

They go for a 3-mile walk together every morning. My dad works nearby, and usually brings her home lunch. He cooks her breakfast in bed for no reason, and takes her on surprise day-dates to the movies. My mom learned to cook his favorite recipes from his grandmother, and play golf, his favorite activity.

I asked them what their secret to a happy marriage is, and my mom told me, “We just love and like each other. We’re each other’s best friends. He’s really the perfect husband — a very kind, compassionate man, with a sense of humor. If you had a shopping list of what you wanted in a mate, except for the Fu Manchu mustache and gold chains, he had everything.” And my dad’s advice? “Learn how to make really good cinnamon rolls.”

He also added, to her, “You’re never boring,” and then to me, “It was always very clear I’d have a wonderful life with your mom. When she wasn’t there, something was missing, and something comes over you when you realize things are better when they’re there.”

Dad, Mom, me & Tony at our engagement party this weekend… Forgive the blurriness - this is the best picture we have of all four of us, we were so busy having fun!

Tony and I will be very blessed if we have a marriage even half as loving and happy as theirs. Thank you for setting such a beautiful example, Mom & Dad! Happy anniversary!

MOTHERHOOD

Me & Courtney.

A sketch I co-wrote and star in with one of my best friends (who also happens to be one of the funniest people in the world), Courtney Pauroso, was featured on Funny or Die today! It was directed by Dominic Russo, co-creator of Comedy Central’s WORKAHOLICS and was originally directed onstage in the Groundlings Sunday company by Jim Rash and Lisa Schurga. (There’s even a little cameo by my husband-to-be, Tony!) It’s called MOTHERHOOD and is about all the truths of becoming a new mom that no one talks about. (Basically, all my worst fears about having a baby… If you ARE a mom, please comment below and tell me I’m wrong and it’s all butterflies and rainbows!)

After next August 1, 2015, this will no longer be a wedding blog, it will be a newlywed blog… And maybe one day, it will even evolve into a blog about being a new mom myself. But for now, I’m having enough meltdowns from wedding stress (our engagement party was last night — blog about that joyful madness coming soon!), that I don’t need to add a crying baby into the mix. Tony has the cutest niece and nephew, and several of my bridesmaids have the most perfect babies of all time, I’m having enough fun living vicariously right now (while still being able to shovel sushi and champagne into my mouth more frequently than is wise for my checkbook.)

Please, watch, like, share, laugh and tell me it’s not this bad!

ENGAGEMENT PHOTO SHOOT TONIGHT!

Dress preview!

We’re taking our engagement photos tonight and I am SO EXCITED!!!! So far, I’ve locked down 3 pairs of Spanx, 2 outfit changes, and 1 screaming match with my fiancé over his hair… And the shoot has not even begun yet! (Pretty sure Tony's wishing it was over already. As we speak, he's blowing leaves off the deck in anticipation.)

We chose a few locations that are really personal to us, and I selected the above dress because it incorporates two of our wedding colors (Tahoe blue and emerald green), with my dove grey manicure and gold bows for our dogs completing the on-theme look. Tony decided to rock something more masculine — namely, scars all over his arms, eagerly provided by our dogs, who I made him bathe this morning. I’ve got wedding-prep adrenaline coursing through my veins, I’m so stoked.

Can’t wait to share the photos with you all!

THE SINGLE LIFE

THE SINGLE LIFE Season 2 is UP!!!! This is straight-up the best webseries on the internet and needs to be a TV series, and I’m not just saying that because my hilarious, adorable fiancé is in it. (I’m also saying it because it’s produced by Glamour Magazine, and is so funny and so well-written and acted, and also stars a surfer, a pop star and the most beautiful blonde. And I got to make a teeny tiny cameo.)

But seriously. This show is great not only because of everyone involved (I’m not kidding about that — the 2nd season was directed by the powerhouse behind the greatest Funny or Die video of all time), but also because of how relatable it is. Dating sucks, and social media makes it even crazier. You can go online-shopping for a boyfriend, and all relationships are forced down to junior high levels when you have to decide when, and what, to label them on Facebook. When it works out, it feels like the happiness is literally changing the chemistry of your body. I remember how lightheaded I used to get whenever Tony would pick me up for a date, I was so excited to see him.

I recently wrote an article for Hello Giggles about all the guys you should date before you get married, because I think that for every relationship that goes horribly wrong, you learn something about yourself and what you need out of a relationship (and what crazy behavior to stop if you want another relationship), and all of that leads to the person you’re meant to be with. I have a few friends (including one of my bridesmaids!) who the fairy tale came true for, and they married their high school sweetheart. And from what I can tell, it is like a real life Disney story.

But, I’m glad I went through the horrors of dating. I figured a lot out the hard way, and it made for some fun stories. In college, I once “bought” a date with the guy I had a crush on at his soccer team’s auction and learned paying for a date does not make it a real date, nor does it make a guy any more likely to actually want to date you. (Ladies, I can’t hit this point home hard enough. Don’t pay for dates!) And I figured out that the guy with a tramp stamp of his fraternity’s letters probably isn’t interested in being a boyfriend. And, if you let your Texas grandmother set you up on a date, the guy will proudly present you with a home-cooked dinner of meats, announcing that he “shot everything on the table!” (This last one actually sounds like Tony’s dream date.)

All those guys led me to Tony and, if we’d met each other any sooner, who knows if we would have been ready to be with the person we wanted to marry. And Tony’s especially lucky, because he gets the best of both worlds… He’s engaged, but gets paid to “cheat” on me, falling in love with beautiful blondes on THE SINGLE LIFE and HART OF DIXIE, and then coming home to me and our three blonde dogs.

If you haven’t seen this show yet, get on it! You can scroll down to catch Season 1. Each and every episode is amazing, and I’m so proud of Tony.

63 YEARS OF LOVE

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I’m heartbroken to share the news that my Grandpa Gil passed away early last week, on July 30th just as the sun was rising. He was at home, surrounded by his wife, family, love and his beloved 17-year-old cat Lyle and I must say, as devastating as it was, how lucky we all should be to live a life as full as his, that should come to an end so peacefully at home with the Frank Sinatra Sirius satellite radio station playing us out to wherever we’re headed next. He’d been in hospice for a week, and my younger brother Bill and I were fortunate enough to be able to go home in time to spend a long weekend with him, which I will treasure forever.
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I waited until today to write about it because last week was simply too sad, but also because today would have been his 63rd wedding anniversary with my Grandma Marilyn. So, it felt appropriate for my wedding blog, to celebrate his life by telling you about the most important part of it: His marriage to my grandma. They are, and will always be, an inspiration, and also a reminder that it’s not the wedding that’s important, it’s the life you build together afterward.
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My grandma and her dad.

My grandma grew up on the slopes of the highest mountain in Panama, where her father had a coffee finca before they moved to the Canal Zone, where her father then worked at Panama Canal Company. My grandpa was a southern gentleman from North Carolina who, as a First Lieutenant in the Finance Department, was stationed in Panama. He worked with my grandma’s mother and when he heard she had a blonde daughter visiting home from college at Tufts University, told her it had been too long since he’d had a home-cooked meal and angled for an invitation to dinner. He got one.
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The church where they got married.

On August 4, 1951, they were married at the Lutheran church in Balboa, Canal Zone and their reception was at the glamorous Hotel Tivoli, the only hotel on the Pacific side. My grandma was 19 and my grandpa was 24.
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Hotel Tivoli

My grandma had the right perspective on weddings (and it was good for me, living in the Era of the Bridezilla, to talk to her about it)… She wasn’t all too concerned with the wedding, she just wanted to be married to my grandpa. I asked her where her dress is now, and she looked at me like I had two heads; she purchased it off the rack at Filene’s in Boston, her younger sister later wore it for her own wedding, and no one can remember what happened to it after that. It was just a dress, after all.
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But, she does remember how handsome my grandpa looked in his white jacket, and that they served champagne flown in by her mother’s military attaché friend in Chile, and that they spent their honeymoon at the Washington Hotel on the Atlantic side of the Canal Zone, where the President of Argentina was staying in exile at the time. Her parents gave them a black cocker spaniel named Tootsie as a wedding gift.

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And did they ever love each other. My grandma moved to the States for my grandpa, and my grandpa resigned from his partnership in Jack in the Box back when it was justa handful of restaurants, so they could move to Boston for my grandma to go to Harvard, at a time when not that many women were going to Harvard.

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They had two daughters, two sons-in-law and two grandchildren they loved deeply, and countless pets they, perhaps, loved most of all. (I come from a family of animal lovers; my Grandpa Gil got to meet Maggie over Easter, and was the biggest supporter of the decision to keep her.)
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With my grandma’s parents.

Most of my memories of him are accompanied by Glenn Miller or the Sweet and Lowdown movie soundtrack. He loved jazz, Lucho Azcárraga and Big Band music. He read Leonard Maltin’s movie review books from cover to cover and adored classic films (especially the ones starring Jane Russell), and he’d make weekly trips to the library to borrow them. He recently watched It’s A Wonderful Life, and especially loved the guardian angel Clarence, which my family takes comfort in, and the idea that he is now an angel for us.
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A product of the Depression, he loved to take my grandma on dates to Costco, where they’d peruse the aisles while dining on samples. Sometimes, on special occasions, they’d splurge and catch a movie on the big screen and treat themselves to In-N-Out. He saved nearly every newspaper and magazine he ever bought, carefully folded and stored. His favorite foods were North Carolina barbecue, Cheerwine soda (bottled in Salisbury), ambrosia and chardonnay on ice.

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He was born in Salisbury, North Carolina, raised by a single mother and his doting grandmother (who had 11 children of her own!), and they called him “Sunny,” for his sunny disposition. He was an accountant, although he always dreamed of being a forest ranger (despite not liking camping or hiking.) He saw active combat in the navy in the Pacific in WWII and served in Panama and Virginia during the Korean war. My mom wants everyone to know, “He hangs an American flag with the deepest respect, emotion and understanding of the sacrifice, service, loyalty, patriotism and bravery made by his fellow servicemen and women throughout our history.” He was a member of the Jamestown Society, his ancestors traced back to the original European settlers of the United States.
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He had the thickest southern drawl and his pet name for all loved ones was “my honey,” which sounded like “money” the way he pronounced it. “He taught his daughters to drive and shoot and dance and play poker, believing they were useful skills for primary school-aged children,” my mom loves to recall. He never met a stranger, and any and all stray animals became a family member. At the party for their 50th wedding anniversary, he toasted the love of his life… Curly, their rescue poodle. He looked forward to seeing Tootsie, Curly, Chewy, Tober, Susie, Jack, Moses, Shadow, Powder Puff, and Toni (the cat, not my fiance), Calico, Coco, Zorro, Joey, Spike, Freddy, Liza, Mama Kitty, Mitty the Kitty and countless others in heaven, and his wish was to be buried with the ashes of all his pets, so he wouldn’t be alone (my mom and aunt are currently inquiring to see if that is possible/legal.)
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A proud veteran, he’ll have a military funeral at the Sacramento Valley National Cemetery next Monday. He lived and loved fully, and he was loved deeply; I can’t imagine life without him. I love you, Grandpa Gil, and know you’re swaying to Moonlight Serenade in heaven, a glass of iced white wine in hand, to celebrate your anniversary today. We miss you so much.

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HAPPY UNANNIVERSARY, TONY!

Exactly one year from today, I will be Mrs. Tony Cavalero. I AM SO EXCITED. If you’ve been following this blog, you already know I’m a lucky girl and a lot of my wedding dreams have come true. I’m marrying my best friend and the love of my life, my own personal Ken doll, Tony. Our wedding is going to be in Lake Tahoe, my favorite place in the world, at my parents’ best friends’ house, the same house where Tony proposed. And it’s all happening in 365 days.

No, seriously. I get to marry that guy. Yeah, the one in the gold glitter suit.

I was going to write, “And the countdown begins!” But, the countdown began pretty much when I was given this child-size wedding gown as a reward for surviving reconstructive surgery after diving face first into a pool:

And, the countdown officially kicked into high gear when Tony proposed to me in December (if you check my email history, you’ll see that very night, I drunk-emailed several photographers, a florist and a rehearsal dinner venue.) But now, it’s starting to feel more real. Normal brides who don’t require, oh, say, an 18+ month engagement, are starting to plan their wedding for the same day. All of the details I’ve been dreaming of for years and Pinning for months need to be narrowed down and decided upon. By the time the holidays roll around again (give or take a month), I need to choose my dress.

It’s overwhelming, thrilling and, (to the bridezilla in me), a little sad, because once I decide on something, that’s it forever, no more dreaming about what that aspect of my wedding will be like. I can already tell that I’ll probably get the post-wedding blues when it’s all over, and be that girl who keeps her wedding portrait as her Facebook profile pic for years. But, then I remember that this wedding is going to actually happen, in real life, not just in my head. And, more importantly, that I get to be married to Tony, and this will just be one of many awesome days in our life.

(I will still wear my wedding dress and drink champagne whenever I’m left alone in my house, though.)

You already know why I love Tony. As I’m writing this, I’m drinking an iced latte that he got up early, when it was still dark out, to leave in the fridge for me before heading to work. Life with him is so fun. The happiest place in the world to me is cuddled up on the sofa with him, with take-out and a glass of wine, our dogs bouncing all over us, while Tony makes me laugh so hard I cry.

Such a good dog dad.

I’m going to a wedding this weekend and Tony has four Groundlings shows in two days, so we decided to celebrate our “unanniversary” early. Well, Tony did — last Monday, he surprised me with a quick getaway to the Parker Palm Springs, where we spent 48 hours eating and lounging in the pool (sometimes, doing both at the same time.)

Our view for the majority of the trip, since it was 111 degrees.

Even at 1am. The pool is open 24 hours.

Side note: My eye kind of looks like the one in the ad for The Strain, right?!

Night moves.

Love this sign they had posted. Super relieved it didn’t apply to us.

When we took a break from the pool, we made s’mores at midnight, a Tahoe tradition and a major wedding dessert, if my mom has anything to say about it.

Tony making me s’mores.

Me eating my s’mores.

And when it was finally time to go to sleep, we’d gently doze off to the sounds of men beating the crap out of each other.

Tony was in charge of the remote. Obviously.

Before we discovered Norma’s delivered to the pool, so we could eat in the pool, we ate all our meals there. The first day, we ordered every appetizer on the menu:

And for breakfast, I had a milkshake. We did not need two straws, as I chose not to share.

Tony was cool with that, he was just relieved I didn’t order the $1,000 frittata.

WHAT.

On the last night, Tony took me to The Tropicale, a restaurant straight out of the Rat Pack era and Palm Springs’ heyday, where we listened to a piano player belt out tunes my Grandpa would’ve loved (and I love, too).

Tony ordered a plate of meat, and I decided to opt for a healthy salad:

Tony’s meat.

My salad. You’re right, those ARE two pieces of fried chicken and it IS soaked in ranch dressing and DOES have an entire avocado on top and I DID eat it all!

Life with Tony is an adventure and, with surprises like this, and take-out and wine and bouncing dogs on the sofa, I just might survive life after the wedding…

Our unanniversary dinner at The Tropicale.

Happy Unanniversary, Tony! I can’t wait to marry you! And to everyone else: Don’t worry, I’ll find ways to come up with a lot more anniversaries, besides our Dateiversary and our Unanniversary, before our wedding. Maybe the First I Love Youversary? The Move Inaversary? The First Time Tony Felt Comfortable Farting In Front of Meversary? (I’m also accepting suggestions in the Comments section below.)