Getting engaged was unexpected [no really, I'm serious.] After almost five years together, it still wasn't something I was anxiously waiting on or intuitively guessing would happen every time he bent down to tie his shoe. Besides the sheer bliss that the sweet, methodical, magical day produced, it also instantly jolted us into a realization. I call it deduction. Or is it reduction? Whatever. The point is: once we got engaged, I realized I just wanted to be married. I wanted our wedding to be a smaller affair than we ever talked about--and less of a production than you see these days, with all the matrimony madness that our society has jumped on. I wanted to celebrate that there aren't any rules in the modern world of wedding planning. I just wanted it to be us. No templates we had to follow. Don't get me wrong, I still had hopes to make every single little detail special, but it didn't mean big bucks, it didn't mean hundreds of people, it didn't mean wedding-planning-central-24/7. I just wanted to be calm and collected, less maintenance than I think people expected I'd be. I didn't want a ton of attention or questions, although when prompted I loved talking about our ideas and the progress we'd made. I surprised people. And I didn't care. All I had to remind myself was the reason why this was all happening, the man that had made me the person I've become, and the positives of that. With that, I wanted to have fun with my wedding planning and finally execute the millions of random little ideas I'd had floating around in my mind. But at the end of the day, I realized I wasn't going to be one of those post-wedding letdown girls. I wasn't going to countdown, "236 days and 4 hours until our big day!" I just wanted it to be about who we are, and focus on personalizing the day so that the intimate affair would make our guests feel special. I told my friend Gail I wanted it to feel like the Oprah show, where every guest goes home feeling celebrated. You get a Fiat! You get a Fiat! You get a Fiat! But alas, I focused on the little details and hoped our guests would leave happy. And if they didn't, we got ours! And you know what? We did it the way we wanted to. We felt comfortable.