BEST WEDDING PLANNING BOOKS! We cooked up a good one…

Our recommendations for the best wedding books are not traditional. They’re more about keeping you and your partner in crime on the same page. (Page! Get it? hah!) You’ve got to stay in close emotional touch with the person you’re marrying!  Here’s a book to help you do just that.

How To Cook Everything by Mark Bittman is designed to get you into the kitchen – together!  Mark, longtime food writer for the New York Times and Gourmet Magazine explains ingredients, techniques and cooking terms in no-nonsense language.   Time in the kitchen is an ideal way to remember how much you love to be together without worrying about place cards and ceremony details. Pick a dish and create something delicious together.

Be well, and love well.

-Dinah

What’s a wedding for, anyway? These two have an interesting answer, bless their hearts.

Congratulations To David Friedlander and Jacqueline Schmidt.

I admit it, I had a hard time processing this article about their wedding from today’s New York Times. I knew there were people in Brooklyn opening restaurants that only serve popovers, and shopping in artisanal hardware stores. But I was unaware that this particular strain of children of the free range, organic, unprocessed corn, had begun to infuse weddings with their intense navel gazing. And apparently, these two believed their wedding to be the ultimate chance to say, “Hey, world! Look at our navels!”

In all sincerity, I wish the Friedlander-Schmidt duo a great deal of happiness, love and a blissful newlywed year. But guys, when you let a New York Times reporter gaze at your navel, all we saw was overpriced lint.

Minding our Ps, Our Qs, and Occasionally, Our Beeswax

English: Detail of a New York Times Advertisem...

All the etiquette that's fit to print!

“Sunday Styles” is my favorite section of the New York Times. (No big mystery – that’s where all the wedding coverage is). It’s also home to the wise and fabulous Philip Galanes, writer of the ever-pithy “Social Qs” column, and now a Social Qs book. New material for the etiquette library!

I’ve used his columns as jumping off points before – like this chat about a sticky invitation situation, and so in honor of his new book, here’s a Social Q brides would be well advised to take!

R.S.V.P.? M.Y.O.B.

A friend asked why I don’t attend a weekly television-watching party at the home of a mutual acquaintance. I didn’t want to tell the truth: “I’m not invited.” I didn’t want to embarrass him or give the impression that I’m offended at being excluded. I’m not. How to reply?

Talya, Brooklyn

If your friend had thought about it for a millisecond, he might have realized there was a chance you hadn’t been asked. Note to the invited: Never assume that other folks were. You may hurt their feelings.

But that’s not the case here. So, be straightforward: “John didn’t invite me. But that’s O.K. I’m not much of a fan of ‘Toddlers (and Mascara and False Eyelashes) and Tiaras.’ ” If your pal feels a little red-faced, so be it. He may learn not to do it again.

Heed Philip’s call brides, maids, moms and friends.  With weddings turning into epic celebrations with pre-parties galore, if someone’s at the shower, it doesn’t mean she’ll be at the bachelorette, or the brunch after the wedding.  Hush up about who’ll be where lest you put your foot in your mouth.

Cheers to Philip on the new book, and here’s to all of us minding our Ps and Qs.

-Dinah