Drama-Free Valentine’s Day

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I’m happy to say Valentine’s Day was drama free. I wasn’t expecting any drama (my dude and I are both pretty chill) but after hearing some friend’s stories, I was extra grateful. We went to a friend’s party in Brooklyn – walking way too far in the frigid cold from Barclays after the F train was refusing to appear. The party was lots of fun and we we were diabetic after from ingesting way too much sugar, as expected. We stopped at Sugar Shoppe on the way home, and Fat Daddy Taco (we needed to eat food that wasn’t 95% sugar).

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We started Sunday off with a leisurely brunch at The Hamilton before showering and attempting our plans of milkshakes and The Boy. Upon arriving at Black Tap in the Meatpacking District, we witnessed the most ridiculous wrapping line plus a bouncer in 10* weather and immediately abandoned ship. Starving, we stopped at The Diner on 14th and 9th for some delicious (albeit overpriced) comfort food. We hopped on the train to 42nd Street to attempt an earlier showing of The Boy. It’s been out for weeks, so how could there be a problem? It turns out that EVERYONE wants to go to the movies when it’s Arctic outside so our movie was sold out plus the theatre was mobbed because the machines to buy tickets were down.

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the scene outside Black Tap Burger. guys, they’re just milkshakes. 

Our plans were just not meant to be, I guess. We ended up making dinner at my apartment and settling in for a double-header of Frozen (that was better than I expected, said Justin) and a movie called Dark Skies (it’s a thriller about aliens with Kerry Russell and I totally enjoyed it).

And we ate more candy. So much candy. Because: Valentine’s Day. 

Least Favorite Made Up Holiday

Let me preface this to say that I think all holidays are made up. Did you know that there’s zero evidence that Jesus H. Christ was born on December 25th? And don’t get me started on Easter. Halloween is made up but at least that one’s just fun.

I’m not typically a fan of Valentine’s Day. Two years ago when my then-long distance boyfriend flew in I asked him to cancel last-minute our dinner reservations (nothing too outrageous, I promise) and asked him to go to a pub instead. I felt fraudulent getting behind the holiday that is a) made up, b) will obviously leave large groups of people feeling bad about themselves which is unnecessary.

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Last year I watched this vlog by Gabby Bernstein and I said fuck it and made it a day for self-care. I took a bath, I got a mani/pedi, it was fun. I even went all the way out to Brooklyn the day after for a kundalini yoga self-love workshop that a girlfriend of mine was hosting and met lots of really cool people who were also in need of something to do on this day, whether they were single or not. That was totally fun. I may or may not have started a “love vision board” (at the suggestion of Bernstein) that never really went anywhere and never was hung up. The point was that it was a lot more fun to focus on what I wanted for the future and how I could make myself feel good right now than wallow with a bunch of other depressed people at a bar.

This year I find myself in a relationship again (and not a long distance one, thank fucking god) and it’s a really wonderful and comfortable one. I knew I still didn’t want to make a big thing of the stupid day but I suggested eating one of those ridiculous milkshakes at Black Tap Burger and going to see The Boy. Is there anything more appropriate for Valentine’s Day than a horror movie? Nah. Even though it received horrible reviews it’ll be fun.  

The best part about Valentine’s Day this year? The Walking Dead is back! My dude and I are both stoked about this.

So, instead putting a lot of pressure on this day, I’m going to be Captain Obvious over here and tell you to just chill out and do what makes you feel good.

Lole White Yoga in Central Park

When I entered and won my ticket to Lole White’s free massive yoga class in Central Park, it said the start time was 4:30 and I was like, “Oh well, can’t go. #adulting.” Then I realized the class started at 6 and I assumed probably later (because lots of adults in this city are lucky enough to have jobs) and left the office fifteen minutes early arriving around 6:10 to the Great Lawn. I own zero pairs of white leggings (for obvious reasons) but I wore my mint green pair (also not flattering, but less unflattering than white) and a white t-shirt. 

I was towards the back but I found an unclaimed mat and gift bag (with a Fuji water bottle, a water bottle light, a Lole no-slip headband (spoiler: it slips), a protein packet, a magazine, among other things) and sat down to warm up. 

The class was taught by three teachers and was more vigorous than I anticipated (but i loved every minute of it). There were volunteers walking around helping people with their alignment and it kinda-sorta made me want to take a teacher training course so I could qualified to do the same thing someday. Anyways. The chick in front of me wouldn’t stop stopping to take photos though – and having her male friend take photos of her in random poses. Put down your damn phone, girl.

The class was accompanied by the beautiful music Ingrid Michaelson and the weather was perfect. I rolled up my new mat, tucked it into my new tote bag, and peaced out through Central Park.

It was a good way to spend a Wednesday night. 

Rockin’ the Suburbs & a Simple Farm Wedding

When Michael, one of my best guy friends, asked me if I’d consider being his date for his sister’s wedding in Connecticut I said of course. I’d met his sister and his fiance only once, but they were pretty awesome. When he told me that it was a wedding at a farm, I was ecstatic. I’ve had a little bit of an infatuation with farms since last year when I started becoming a Ronnybrook fangirl. Anyways.

We drove up on Thursday night to his parent’s house. It was late so we decided to make it a legit road trip in the country and we stopped for dinner at a Dairy Queen in Meriden.

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See how it glows? Yeah, it was pretty disgusting. But in the totally satisfying way because we were starving. We arrived at his parents house where we were greeted with hugs, smiles, and wine. The plan for the next three days was relayed our way and we settled in. 

The next day the guys went golfing and I helped the mother of the bride and the bride construct their table seating cards. They were simple and beautiful! We all eventually ventured to Tyrone Farm in Pomfret for the rehearsal and later to Sharpe Hill Vinyards for the rehearsal dinner. I got to meet lots of their family and they were all awesome. We drank a lot of wine. 

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the view where the ceremony was going to be

While trying to keep up drink-for-drink with Michael’s family, I obviously consumed far too much wine. When we got back to his family’s house, I crashed. The next day was the big day. Michael and I were staying at the hotel where the rest of the bridal party was staying that night so we went to check-in early and after I got ready, we headed over to the venue.

Tyrone Farm is completely off the grid (except for at night when, you know, the goes down) and totally gorgeous. I hung out in the cottage where the bridal party was getting ready, helping where I could, and then went over to the room in the main house on the property where the guys were getting ready and did what I could over there. We lucked out and it ended up being about 10* cooler than it was the day before and the ceremony area was in the shade by the time it started. Prior to the ceremony, Hosmer Mountain Bottling Co. soda was served. Michael and his family lived once across the street from the 100+ year old company so it was sentimental for their family.

The ceremony was absolutely gorgeous (and quick!). Shakespeare’s Sonnet 116 was read, as well as a passage from “So Long and Thanks for All the Fish” by Douglas Adams. 

After the cocktail hour, we were all shown to our seats in the main reception area which was the barn (and it was air conditioned!). It was absolutely gorgeous inside. I snapped this photo during the bride & groom’s first dance and it kind of gives an idea about the romanticism of this setting.

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And when it got darker out, it just got prettier inside. The food was wonderful and there was a ton of dancing. There was a photo booth in the main house, so we obliged.

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Around 11:30, buses came and took us back to the hotel where the after party commenced in the bar (restaurant?) across the street. Most of us were changed and casual. We closed the place down and then happily crashed.

After a totally needed-and-necessary brunch at his parent’s house, we headed back to the city. We hit no traffic and then chowed down on some Israeli food before calling it a night. 

I had an unbelievable time with Michael, as well as with his family, and meeting a ton of people that quickly became my family for the weekend.  Seeing how happy the bride and groom were, and how beautiful they both looked, and how happily they looked at each other, just made me totally melt. 

I told Michael on the way back that I am always ready and willing to step in and be his stand-in pseudo-girlfriend for family events now and until each of us finds our own imperfectly perfect person for each other. He just thanked me.