PAOLA + ALEX
Alex and I met at art school while I was visiting my best friend on a break from class. From the moment I saw him, I had a crush on him. My best friend made me go over and talk to him. I was so nervous, but he was sweet and all I kept thinking was, "I can't believe we're talking. He is so handsome." I never did return to class.
Our first date was a trip to the grocery store to get sugar to make mojitos at my party. He picked me up in his car and was listening to The Pixies. I was so excited and nervous that by the time I got home to tell my friends how it went, I’d completely forgotten to invite him to my party that night. Fortunately, my friend Molly brought him over anyways. When he showed up, I got butterflies in my stomach.
We spent everyday together after that. The first time we said “I love you” was during a party at my apartment while we were lying in bed, taking a break from everyone and I felt like the luckiest girl in the world.
Six years later, we got engaged in Paris. I noticed the outline of a ring in his pocket at the airport. I couldn’t believe it. I am naturally very curious, but I managed to wait a few days before finally snooping around for it while he was in the bathroom. It was a sterling silver spoon ring that he’d made. I knew I should’ve been awe-struck, but I thought, "What? A spoon ring? He knows I love estate jewelry! He knows!" I felt awful about my reaction, but I couldn't hide how I felt. For rest of the trip, I was on edge, waiting impatiently.
Finally, one afternoon after buying wine and cheese, we went back to our friend's apartment where he’d set up a picnic on the roof. It was right before nightfall. I turned around and he was on one knee with a piece of bread that opened like a ring box with a ring perched on a piece of cheese. He said, "Will you marry me?" and I said, "Are you sure?" and he laughed and said, "Yes!"
Later, I confessed that I’d taken a peek at the ring. He said that he had his suspicions and that the real ring he’d gotten me was stuck in transit, so he’d created something in the meantime. When we got home, he proposed all over again with the real one, which turned out to be nothing like what he’d thought. We returned it and together, we picked out an Art Deco ring.
I'd been planning my wedding since I was little, so I knew exactly how I wanted everything. We got married on a beautiful farm in Maryland. It was magical. The whole wedding was DIY. My friends and family were incredibly helpful with everything. I didn't have any bridesmaids and was happy instead to be surrounded by all of my friends.
I walked down the aisle with my mom and dad to my friends singing an old Hawaiian Love Song. We were laughing and kissing and dancing. After speeches, my DJ friend Beki played "I Love You Always Forever" by Donna Lewis. We hadn’t planned a first dance, but as the song started Alex looked at me and said, "Do you want to dance?" Totally spontaneous. To top it all off, our friend Dan set up a fireworks show as a wedding present. I savored every moment of my wedding and I wouldn't have change a thing.