Crystal + Murray
We were set up on a blind date by our friend Jenni. We had just a few short, funny emails before we met, but part of what I liked about Murray right off the bat was that he was direct. He told me he would be the guy at the bar hating his new iPhone. When I walked into Dominick's he was in fact the guy at the bar hating his iPhone. Before I even sat down he asked if I wanted to grab a table for dinner. He said there was a guy at the bar whose laugh was driving him nuts. This made me laugh. I just knew from the beginning that no matter what happened, we would have a totally good time. I also thought he was a fox.
He was so straightforward! It was so refreshing. I've never been very good at reading between the lines, interpreting texts, or strategizing when to call or not call. But Murray was clear and direct from the start. He called when he said he would, kept our plans, showed up on time, and texted me things like, "That was fun." He barely even uses emojis. He's a man of his word and it's one of the things I love about him most.
We met in October, and in December, we decided to go to Mexico City between Christmas and New Years. That's pretty adventurous in itself. But the way riskier move was that in order to fly to Mexico City together on December 26th, he would have to meet me in San Francisco on the 25th. That meant Christmas with the family. Pretty major, right? The second he showed up at the hotel that morning, I knew he was the one.
We first said I love you sitting at the bar at Le Dauphin in Paris, talking about the kind of life stuff that being in Paris and drinking so much wine brings out in your. That's when Murray said, "Well, you know I love you, right?" To which I replied, "No! I didn't know that. But I'm really glad because I totally love you!"
I'm all for marriage. I know it seems outdated to a lot of people, and to some it's just a piece of paper, but for me, I just love the idea that two people make a commitment to each other. And this can take so many shapes and forms! It wasn't something that was really important to Murray, which really made it all the more surprising when he planned an elaborate surprise proposal that included tricking me into thinking we were going to a friends house for dinner, faking car trouble, getting down on his knee in front a huge mural in West Hollywood that read LOVE, and surprising me with dinner with friends at the place where we had our first date. I was totally shocked. Since we already knew we had a babe on the way, I figured we would head on down to the Beverly Hills courthouse at some point and was OK with that. But he found a way to make everything really special.
We were married in Ojai. It was insanely beautiful. The weather report had threatened rain for weeks ahead but Ojai was the most gorgeous I had ever seen it. It was in early spring and the flowers and orange trees were out in full force!
The morning of we went on a hike and then I rallied the ladies who were staying on the property with us and got to work. There was so much to do! Having everyone pitch in making tiny bouquets for the port-o-potties and hanging paper backgrounds for the photo backdrop made it feel like fun, not work.
We wrote our vows. Right before the ceremony. Murray said he was going to spend 20 minutes on them and that he was going to keep them really short, so I followed his lead. Which was a bad idea because he is much more eloquent and writes for TV. Forget it. I cried my eyes out -- so did everyone else! Mine turned out to be much shorter, they were truly from the heart. Our rabbi, Rabbi Karen Deistch, picked up her guitar and asked everyone to stand up and gather around us for a sing-a-long at the end of the ceremony. We could really feel the love!
Beth Griffiths from Whoa Nelly! put together a dream dinner served family style for us. There were loads of passed appetizers like porcini arancini and cheesy toasts and then a big delicious farmer's market salad, roasted chicken with chimichurri and dandelion, braised short ribs with gremolata, roasted spring veggies and potatoes. We had gluten free wedding cake, sea salt caramel pudding any mini flourless chocolate cakes for dessert. Spare Room Hollywood Offsite created custom his (a cucumber mint gin cooler!) and hers (a beet margarita) cocktails and made (what I hear were) the most delicious drinks all night long for our guests.
Well, there was dancing. It started with an impromptu toast in the form of a very exotic dance with a fan performed by our friend Maurice. This was followed by a gift in the form of an interpretive dance inspired by our love story performed by our friends Lena and Chris. I don't know how late everyone stayed, but I do know I didn't want the party to end, because I chased down the bar guys as they were packing up and begged them to leave the open tequila with me! Really good look for a pregnant lady.
Pics by Amanda Marsalis + Karen Nedivi