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Anytime you receive an email that starts off with “Hi beauties!!!!” and has a wedding-related subject line, you know you’re in for something awful. And so did a few of the friends I love most in this world, when I invited/harassed them to participate in a “Wedding Sweatshop Wino Night” this past Sunday. Only it wasn’t just a night, it was a day. I offered them wine, champagne, snacks, pizza and cupcakes in exchange for a day of free labor assembling hundreds of DIY projects while listening to me vent about wedding drama. And they agreed. Katierose, Courtney, Jeanie, Misty and Dani: Thank you. I love you. I promise I will be the friend you once loved again on August 2.

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{I made my new favorite cupcake recipe}

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{TONANNIE programs, candy and romantic movie quotes I printed up}

I personally found the day’s itinerary thrilling: we would be turning the leftover programs from Tony and my show TONANNIE into cones to store flower petals in, for guests to hurl at us as we walk back down the aisle as husband and wife. (This photo op is something I’ve been dreaming of for a very, very, very, very long time.) I saw this pic on Pinterest, and thought using our old programs was a perfect way to personalize it:

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{via}

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And, because I’m forcing our guests to adhere to a black tie dress code (despite the fact that it’s an outdoor August wedding on a sloped lawn next to a rocky beach, as my mom loves to frequently point out), we decided to provide “dancing shoes” – a basket of flip flops for guests to dive into when their tootsies start aching. I bought a ton on sale at Old Navy, and Katierose had the brilliant idea to get the girls together to help decorate them (totally throwing Kro under the bus here as the instigator behind the sweatshop.) I thought it would be cute to include romantic quotes from films on them, since Tony and I work(/are attempting to work) in Hollywood and love movies. We put the quote on one shoe, the name of the movie on the other and finished them off with the artistic skills of a 4-year-old prodigy.

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It was one of the happiest, most fun days of this entire wedding planning saga thus far. It gave me all the feels, seeing so many of my closest friends come out to support and help me. They’re all ridiculously talented, funny and busy women – none of whom share the same feverish passion for intense wedding insanity – but they knew I am obsessed with weddings, and so they gave up their Sunday for me. And pretended it was fun. We talked boys, jobs and about how the day felt like an old-fashioned “sewing circle,” everybody turning out to get work done on my behalf. In the olden days, women came together for a greater cause, supporting each others charities, families – or simply each other. There was something deep-rooted about it. I’m so grateful my friends came together for the silly cause that is my wedding.

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We also got drank roughly 1+ bottles of champagne each. I’m super excited to see who ends up with the shoes that have quotes like “When you know you want to spend the rest of your life with yourself, you want your life to start as soon as possible,” from When Sally Met Sally. And those are some of my very favorite, most special details about our wedding, because they come with the memory of this happy day with my friends assembling them. Everyone was really worried when they arrived that their artistic skills wouldn’t be up to par – probably because I’ve been a bridezilla dictator in most other aspects of our nuptials – but I love the shoes and cones so damn much, because they’re personal and were made by people who love me. I’m so lucky that I get to marry my best friend, Tony; but we are so, so, so lucky we get to get married surrounded by friends like these girls. Katierose, Courtney, Jeanie, Misty and Dani: To me, you are perfect. You complete me. I am who I am because of you. If you’re a bird, I’m a bird. You make me want to be a better man. Can you feel the love tonight? THANK YOU!!!!!!

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{I didn’t even think to take a photo until the end of the night because I was too busy forcing my friends to work for me, so I am devastated to say I don’t have a group photo… But I feel like this pic, and our smiles here, really captures the vibe of the day. Whose looks exhilarated and unforced??}