When S and I were planning our wedding, we couldn’t decide on a first dance. We didn’t have a song that represented us, or signified a special moment or memory (well, we did have some, but they weren’t exactly slow songs). So, the music lover he is, S made me a mix CD of songs he thought would work, and I chose from them.

One of the songs was “Challengers” by The New Pornographers. He chose it specifically because of the following line:

“Whatever the mess you are, you’re mine, okay.”

This line was for me. I’m kind of a mess sometimes. Apparently I look really fine on the outside, but believe me, balancing a job and writing and, well, life, has its moments. I get frazzled. I talk to myself. I obsess over the smallest insignificant things. I’m moody. And I daydream constantly.

But here’s the thing – I’ve come to realize that this mess I am is perfect for writing. These things I daydream become scenes. These moments I obsess over become scenarios (loosely). These conversations I have in my head become dialogue. I’ve learned to channel my craziness into something. Granted, I’m still a mess often. I still forget to do the dishes. I still have random mood swings. But most of the idiosyncrasies S has become accustomed to I’ve learned to deal with.

Because in my head there are voices and there are characters just dying to come out. So I put my fingers on the keyboard and write them. I let their stories flow in ways they want. And sometimes they work, and sometimes they don’t, and sometimes I Just end up with rubbish. But I guess, at least in the case of TNWSY, sometimes they become characters other people want to read about, too. My mess became something real and tangible. And the coolest, weirdest, most exciting thing is that one day you’ll get to meet these characters, too. They’ll be real to you, too.

We didn’t end up going with “Challengers;” despite the line, it just wasn’t right. We, instead, used R.E.M.’s “At My Most Beautiful” which really is quite beautiful and perfect for us. But it’s not that moment – that first dance – that I think best showcases our marriage. It’s every day. It’s him accepting me for the mess I am. Like the song says, it’s finding ways to make one another smile. Even at our worst. Even at our best.

One Year Anniversary

So, September 24th was my one year anniversary of being married to S. I started writing little posts leading up to the date, and that allowed me to reminisce a bit. (And I LOVE to reminisce.) But, go figure, on the actual day I didn’t write a thing. Not one single post.

I guess I was too busy being happy.

Anyway, we survived a year, and that’s excellent. Here’s to another year, and another anniversary post that’ll be a few days late.

(I’m bad at embedding videos, so if you’re interested, here’s a link to our wedding highlight reel.)

Tales from our wedding: The father/daughter dance of doom

Father/Daughter Dance

Our one-year wedding anniversary is coming up in a month. Crazy how fast time goes by. To celebrate, I wanted to share some little-known stories from our wedding. Stories that most of the guests don’t even know. Stories that, to me, are just as memorable as the I dos.


It’s not surprising to anyone that I was a huge reader growing up. My happy place was at the library. And while I was a regular, cheery, well-adjusted child, I loved sad books. Seriously. I remembering reading A Summer to Die in our kitchen, and silently crying through each page. I loved books that made me feel, even if that feeling was sorrow. 

Being Jewish, I obviously had to go through my Holocaust stage. I wanted to know more about my culture’s past, and see how much we suffered (as I was constantly reminded). Holocaust books were fascinating to me. Depressing, terrifying, I couldn’t believe they were true. So, of course, I had to share them with someone. 

Every time I read a new book, I’d tell my dad all about it. It became a game, really. I’d start talking, and he’d audibly sigh not because he hated hearing me share, but because he hated sad books. He hated being depressed. He hated when I told him if the girl/boy survived, and what became of their families. Unlike me, he didn’t want books that made him feel. He wanted books that were a distraction from everyday horrors, and I understood that, too.

The thing is, my dad is a very emotional man. You wouldn’t know that if you didn’t really know him. I mean, he’s very Italian, and born and raised in Brooklyn. He can fix a roof in an afternoon, and lift hundred-pound boxes up fights of stairs. He watches football and drinks beer, he golfs. But he was also the first to get teary eyed when I moved away to college. He was the first to sob when my mom was okay after her operation. Incidentally, he gets it from his dad.

As the Big Day drew nearer, we placed bets on how long it would be before he cried. While walking out? During the I dos? In all honesty, I don’t know if it happened during the ceremony. To this day he swears he didn’t cry, and I have no proof to justify otherwise.

But then the father/daughter dance came. And we all knew he’d lose it during that. All waited for it. He looked a little misty when we walked out, but as we turned, he murmured…

“Remember those books you used to read? About the girl who was running from the Nazis…”

To which I replied, “Dad. Are  you talking about the Holocaust at my wedding?”

And then we cracked up. Because of course he brought that up. He didn’t want to cry, so he brought up books I read. Depressing books, but still a distraction from the tears that might have come. He knew it would be funny. He knew I’d have a laugh.

And I did.

Some girls might have hated that their dad brought up such a horrible situation during such a memorable moment. But me? I wouldn’t have had it any other way.


The other night while discussing the game M.A.S.H. with a friend (something we talk about regularly, of course), I had a strange realization. You know how in the game you choose different cars, jobs, husbands, honeymoons, etc? I thought: “Oh, my future honeymoon will totally be in Italy.”*

Which is kind weird to think considering…I already had my honeymoon.

You guys…i’m married.

It’s not like this is new information, of course. I’ve been married since September. We had a honeymoon in September. I’ve had quite some time to process this  new development. But sometimes it’s weird to think that this big, huge, momentous occasion I’ve, to some degree, thought of my entire life…has already happened.

Not that I’m in any way sad about it, or wanting to re-do it (believe me, I’m not). I loved our wedding. I loved our honeymoon. (Heck, I even love my husband.) It’s just weird to not have that on the horizon anymore.

I later told S that I forgot we were married, and he gave me his normal response of “well, it was just a practice wedding.” And then I shoved him off the bed because honestly, one wedding is enough.

*We did in fact go to Italy for our honeymoon!

Bridal Shower

My bridal shower was the other weekend. It’s crazy that it’s already passed. I’ve always found showers to be a bit – well – cheesy, but let me say, mine was far from it. In fact, mine was amazing. My friends went above and beyond. I’m constantly amazed by how talented they are, and here’s proof.

I had absolutely nothing to do with the shower – I was just told to show up. My maid of honor, Megan, organized the entire thing with my mom and the other bridesmaids. The party was – to my delight – book themed. The invitations were library cards. To my surprise, Megan then had everyone get me a book, and tuck the invite into a little library card holder. How cute?

She also handmade the veil I’m wearing, but we’ll get to that later. The shower was at the community room of the apartment complex my dad works at. Check out how beautiful the rooms were:

Those paper chains had writing on them, so they looked like book pages. (Apparently it was stationary – the girls did not actually rip apart a book, they were pleased to tell me.)

My friend Karina HAND-MADE this amazing fondant cake. It not only looked brilliant, it tasted wonderful as well.

The Great Gatsby is my favorite book, thus the second book. Also, the reason behind Megan’s computer background, which was attached to a TV. We played the trivia game, and instead of reading how Samir’s answers to questions, she video taped him.

Yes, that’s Samir and I photoshopped into the cover of The Great Gatsby. It’s also one of our engagement photos. As mentioned earlier, Megan made me a little vintage style veil to wear – also in theme of the shower.

I can’t wait to wear it again for the bachelorette party! As for the food, it was delicious! My mom got subs and chicken from Publix, while the girls all brought homemade sides. Megan also made me pie pops (because I prefer pie to cake), which we’re having at the wedding. They were so good!

My mom, who works for a chocolatier, made chocolate books and dinosaurs.

We played a few games, but mostly hung out. What I liked most was watching everyone get along, even those who’ve never met before. It’s amazing seeing that happen – seeing all of my different lives come together. There were my high school drama friends sitting with my college circus friends. My roommates with my cousins. People keep asking Samir and I what we’re most excited about, in regards to the wedding. Aside from actually being married, we’re mostly excited about seeing everyone together. That’s what means the most to us.

Me and my amazing, wonderful, lovely bridesmaids who put the whole thing on.

All of the photos were taken by my amazing friend and bridesmaid, Colure. She did our engagement photos, too!