Sam and Mark's Super Happy Wedding Funtime

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So we still have stuff to do. Lots of stuff. Probably by other standards not really that much, but to me it is a lot. And it involves sawing. Sawing. Wood. What was I thinking?

It is funny, people ask me if I’m nervous or excited or stressed (and some people tell me exactly how I must be feeling, which is really annoying, but I’m learning to let go). I’m not. I am. I don’t know. I’m kind of apathetic really. Is that bad to say? I am. I think it is a defense mechanism. I fall into apathy because I don’t want to deal with stress.

I was thinking about this. The stress of a wedding. None of it has anything to do with the marriage, with the commitment. It all has to do with the party. Will people have fun? Will the food be ok? Will there be enough to drink? Will people have fun? Did I ask that already? Will they? Will they be bored? Do I even care? I guess I do. I do. Are they going to hate me because they are bored? Are they going to come all this way and be inconvenienced and bored and never talk to me again? Why didn’t we elope? Why did we decide to do all these things?

But really, I’m happy with this stress. If it was the stress of “am I making a wrong choice WITH THE REST OF MY LIFE” then I would be unhappy with that stress. But this stress, this will there be enough wine (yes, there will be), will there be enough food (again- yes), will people have fun (see answer re: enough wine. Fun in a bottle) stress- this is good. Better than good, it is great. This is the stress you want to have. This is the stress you revel in.

One week left!


10 days left!

People ask me if I’m nervous, and the answer is no. Well no more nervous than I usually am. Which is already pretty nervous. Anxious, is probably a better word. Tense. High strung. The usual, though. Nothing special.

People ask me if I’m excited, and the answer is YES! I am looking forward to seeing my friends and family. I guess I am excited about marrying Mark too, but mostly I’m excited for a party.

People ask me how I’m feeling, and the answer is fine.

People ask me if I’m ready, and the answer is depends. Ready to marry Mark? Of course. Have been for a while. Ready for the party? Er. Mostly. I still have some crap to glue, but push comes to shove? We’d make it work.

At first, I didn’t want to do a wedding registry at all. But people didn’t listen or just didn’t agree with us. Ironically, the same people that won’t listen to your desire to not register are really insistent that you give them a list of things to buy. It is nice that people want to give us gifts. And if people don’t, that will be fine too. I don’t want to sound ungrateful or insistent. I don’t want anyone to feel obligated, one way or another. To give, not give; ask, not ask.

We registered first on Amazon thinking that would be easiest. Well. It wasn’t. So we decided to head down to our local Macy’s to give people more options. I thought we would be in and out in an hour. I thought it would be a quick scan and then we’d go on to other things. I was wrong. It ended up taking the whole day, and we only registered for a few things.

At first, I thought registering was just building a list of pre-approved gifts. We already have so much stuff together, we’d just list a few random bits of things we wanted and we’d be done. That’s what the amazon list was and that was fine.

But when we started going through the displays at Macy’s and we started thinking about how we would define our ever after, things sort of shifted. This want just a bunch of kitchen stuff, this is what we’d use to entertain (if we ever get a bigger place) this is what we’d use for weekends, this is what we’d use for game nights (again… If we ever get a bigger place- seriously, I’ll invite you ALL over if we ever get a bigger place). This was our future. This is the serving tray we will use for Thanksgiving. This is the salad bowl for special nights and ordinary nights. This is who we will become together as a couple for ever and ever.

It got weirdly overwhelming. It is just stuff. Just a teapot. But will I still like that teapot in ten years. 15? 30? Is it going to stand the test of time? Will it look dated? Will people think we are frivolous for wanting such a silly teapot? Or am I just over-thinking a teapot?

Yeah. It’s the last one. I’m over-thinking a teapot.

So we registered for stuff we liked. Some stuff we’d never buy but thought was nice. We registered for a lot things we know we will never get, and that is totaly fine because in that moment before scanning the bar code, we lived a lifetime together. We had pasta with goat cheese in the pasta dishes while watching movies. We served scotch to friends before a show in the crystal glasses. We argued over the evenness of the sheets. In just a moment, in the flash of the rf scanner, we were in a different time (and a much bigger apartment). We could create a whole new reality just by picking out serving dishes.

If we end up with that crystal decanter, I’m pretty sure I get to be a housewife.

Oh bloody crap there are less than 4 months until my wedding.

I guess I should start planning.

We’ve been resting on this lovely bed of smug satisfaction at taking care of the big things (venue, photographer, dress), that we’ve sorta completely forgotten all the little things (invites, schedules, decor, ceremony, entertainment, etc). Well. Not forgotten so much as willfully ignored. But my chickens, they are roosting. Roooooooosting.

And now it is the holidays. This is a time for not being at all productive because holidays. Holidays! They are the most wonderful excuse ever. So generic. So non-specific. Sorry, I can’t. You know, it’s the holidays.

I love the holidays. I love the idea of getting married during the holidays, especially New Years. And even though I really don’t celebrate Christmas, there is something beautiful and magical about fairy lights. Cold, dark nights plus romantic twinkle lights equals fantastic. I love the aesthetic.

My winter wedding would be jewel toned. Lights would be low and cozy. Candlelight. But it would also be sleek. Deco. 1920s. I keep coming back to the 1920s, even though my dress is decidedly NOT 1920s. But I love the idea, especially for a New Year’s Day wedding. Something about the glamour. Long, tall lines, champagne flutes, bow ties and vests, feathers in your hair, long gloves. Very Gatsby but without the misery. Very Downton season 3, again, without the misery.

Dress ideas for New Year’s:


Or maybe:


I really just want the awesome headpiece.

Anyway. The New Years Wedding would be back to front. New Year’s Eve would be the reception- a late dinner. It would be glorious and decadent and delicious and then, at the stroke of midnight, we’d gather around for the ceremony. It would be quick and it would be followed by more drinking and dancing. It would feel like Midnight In Paris, a sort of magical, once in a life time event. Something maybe you stumbled into, got swept up in, and was so strange and wonderful, you let it carry you away.

But this is yet another wedding that I won’t have. I need to get to work on the one I will be having pretty soon, or… Well. I won’t have it.

Oh my gosh I so do not even care about weddings anymore.

I don’t. At all.

Especially mine- I don’t care. People ask me questions and I just shrug. It is still happening, I guess. I mean, we booked the place and the other place. So that’s sorted. We have a kick-ass photographer and  coordinator to help us out. The food will be good. The wine will be good. I’m sure whenever we (and by we I mean Mark) get around to putting together our music, that will be good. I even have a pretty dress that may or may not show up any day now.

Maybe, at some point, we might even send out the Save The Date cards we have sitting in the living room.


I feel like I am in limbo. Like I am waiting to start to care again. And maybe I will, but I think it won’t be for a while. There are other things to do- elections, holidays, birthdays. These things are infinitely more interesting than trying to find shoes to go with a dress (dude, this is really stupid hard) or invitations (the ones in my head don’t seem to exist and I’ll be damned if I’m paying for custom invites) and get an officiant (uuuuuuh… Crap. This is important.).

I’m worried that my apathy will somehow translate into a big empty room with no guests (and no wedding shoes). But. That probably won’t happen. Right? And if it does… Meh.



One of the first places to pop into our heads when we were first engaged was wine country. We’ve spent weekend after weekend in Sonoma county drinking wine and gazing at the countryside. Our first weekend trip together was to Healdsberg where we spent 3 days visiting Mark’s go-to places and finding a few new ones we could call ours together. When my parents came to visit and meet Mark for the first time, we took them up to wine country. It is a wonderful, magical escape. It is filled with happy memories and good times.

It is also like the San Fernando Valley of Wedding Porn. How many blogs have post after post on beautiful wine country weddings? Barns and gardens and flowers and sunshine and happiness. Look at everyone floating on clouds of joy in the fields, the vineyards, the gardens. Look at them glowing in the sun. The bright, beautiful, cloudless blue skies and the miles of rustic charm.

What they don’t tell you about is that most of those beautiful rustic barns do not have running water. That means you and your gorgeous friends and family in all of their finery will be using chemical toilets you have rent for the festivities. Port-a-potties. In a wedding dress. There aren’t enough fairy lights in California to make me forget I’ll be using a port-a-potty. What do you remember most from the wedding? Standing downwind from the chemical toilets.

Also. All those blue skies and sunshine? That comes with a price. Heat. It is hot in wine country. When it is not hot in wine country it is potentially overcast and raining. When it is clear and beautiful, it is hot. The second to last thing, after using chemical toilets, I want on my wedding day is heatstroke.

Of course if we did a wine country wedding, we’d do it at a lovely place with running water. It would be less wine country and more garden party. Maybe something like this:


Shade and umbrellas and lush green grass and most importantly: running water. Sweet porcelain beauties. It would be so lovely. And my dress? It would have been this one:


Lovely, lacy, perfect for an afternoon wedding in a garden.

We’d play croquet on the lawn while sipping cocktails and wine. Kids could frolic amongst the flowers. Dinner would be lunch and it would be light and bright and delicious. We could retire to the veranda when the heatstroke set in. It would be lovely.

I am having an identity crisis.

It started with self-inking stamps.

Self inking stamps are pretty nifty. You can put your return address on one and instead of writing it on envelope after envelope you simply stamp. Done! It saves time and energy. We are eventually going to send out save the date cards and invitations and if I’ve learned anything from sending out my end of year greeting cards, it is this: writing return addresses on a few dozen envelopes is REALLY annoying.

None of this is news, of course. Most of you already figured out that stamps, stickers, embossers, or even the office printer are much better, saner, easier ways to deal with this problem. Many of you may even think I am a little dumb for handwriting my return address. You are entitled to your opinion. My intellectual status is not the issue here. My identity is.

Because, you see, most of these stamps have a name on them. A name. One. Just one name, the last name, the surname, the family name. And this is where the identity crisis starts.

Getting married is about forming a family. And no, a family does not require children, thank you very much, Religious Right. A family can be just the two of us. We are a team, a partnership, a unit, a family. Identifying myself as part of this family is important to me. Otherwise, why would I bother getting married? I mean really, if that isn’t important to you, DO NOT get married. SERIOUSLY. It would be a stupid waste of money and time.

So identifying myself as part of a team is important. But then again, so is keeping my individual identity. I mean, I am me. I have had this name for a long time. This name is my email address. This name is on my driver’s license. This name is how I’m known. This is me. And this is my family too. This is my parents and my brother who are no less important to me as a married person than as a single person. This is me. And becoming part of a new family does not mean I no longer get to be me. Right?

I will be redefining who I am. That is fair to say. I am no longer me, single gal-about-town, I will be me, married gal-about-town. It is a big change. But is it name-change worthy?

I like the Idea of being a part of “The Whatevers.” I like the way that sounds. I like the way it looks on self-inking stamps. I like it a lot. But I also don’t think it is fair that I am the one expected to give up my identity for this ultimately aesthetic detail. And that is exactly what it feels like. I must renounce my father’s name as I am no longer his property; I now belong to this new man and I take his name.

But is a tradition born from the sexist patriarchy inherently evil? Just because your father was an asshole, does it mean you have to be an asshole too? I don’t know. I don’t know that I want to support it. I don’t know that my not supporting it matters at all to anyone but me. I don’t have the complication of children to worry about. We aren’t going to pass down a problem or an insane last name.

I was trying to get Mark to agree on changing both our names to something nuts. It is a much easier pill for me to swallow, as I’ve been told from a very young age that if I’m really super lucky someday I’ll get to be Mrs. Somebodyelse someday.  He has never had to deal with this expectation. In fact, just the opposite, the idea that -*he* would change *his* name? That’s just weird.

So we will continue to be Sam and Mark. And not The Somebodys or The Whatevers or even The Whatever-Somebodys. We will just be us, together as a team, with different names but the same goals.


Sam and Mark