Newlyweds No More

It’s hard to believe, but we got married one year ago today in the historic Ford Motor Company Piquette Avenue Plant in Detroit, Michigan. And what a first year of marriage we’ve had.

While we were on the plane home from our honeymoon in the Canary Islands, we both pledged that when we got back to San Francisco, we would just take it easy and live a stress-free, cash-flush, selfish, childless lifestyle for (at least) a couple of years.


Instead, we got a rescue puppy and bought an old house to restore.

Temples = Suck at stress-free.

We just really like projects, I guess. We can’t stop the need to do, do, do; work, work, work; accomplish, accomplish, accomplish.

However, we’ve really loved each other along the way this year. And we really, really, really loved May 21, 2011. So here’s a brief look back in honor of the first anniversary of our wedding. We won’t have much time or money to devote to a celebration otherwise, since the back wall of our house is currently off and we’re at the mercy of the hardest working, most honest and dependable team of contractors I’ve ever known (besides our own families, of course) to fix it all for us…

So here’s our celebration!


Gosh, I love doing that!

The day before our wedding was SO FREAKIN’ ROUGH. It was a ton of work for Trent and I and lots of drama on not enough sleep. So let’s just skip over all that, to this moment:

Our wedding hall, the night of our rehearsal.

Calm before the storm.

I snapped this photo on Friday around 4:00 PM, when everything was at last DONE. And that included finishing my damn centerpieces, which I worked on for MONTHS:

One of the tables at our wedding.

Centerpiece brilliance.

What, you ask, were these centerpieces?

I pulled a photo of EVERY SINGLE PERSON at my wedding (well, almost — there were just a couple friends of my mom’s I couldn’t find; I confess), with either me, Trent, or with our families. I reproduced them and framed them all, and grouped them on the tables where everyone was sitting, with greens and candles.

In case you aren’t impressed, there were 250 PEOPLE AT MY WEDDING.

I can’t even tell you how much work it was, but it was worth it. And it screamed “Lisa Project,” for sure.

So, all Lisa Projects done, we whipped through a quick rehearsal, then went off to the Detroit Yacht Club for dinner and to “get the party started,” as they say.

Guests eating at our rehearsal dinner

No more drama! Just eating and drinking!

Trent and I were SO relieved to be at the rehearsal dinner, and actually see our friends and family (many of them had been hanging around for a few days wanting to help us, but we were in too much of a Type-A frenzy to even tell them what to do). We lingered for a good long time at the Club, drinking lots of free beer, before we packed it off to the Town Pump Tavern to meet up with more people in town from San Francisco and start paying for the beer. Still, people managed to have a pretty good time…

Guests partying at the Town Pump the night before our wedding.

Aw. Feel the love!

One of my favorite memories of the weekend was ordering my drunk fiance home around 1:00 AM that night, then stumbling back to my own carriage house at the Inn on Ferry Street with my sister and Kim and Anna (who was 38 weeks pregnant). But FIRST I insisted that we stop and get a falafel. Here I am eating that falafel:

Me eating a falafel the night before my wedding.

Bride-to-be in all her glory.

Mmmm. Looks so good. Miss Detroit Middle Eastern food so bad!


The next day we both managed to wake up and get ready to get married! Yes! Really! Thank god I ate that falafel at 1:00 AM.

In fact, I was up around 6:00 AM to write my vows (yep, I left it until the last minute; very UN-Lisa)…

Me writing my wedding vows.

There’s magic in that pen!

Trent was up to go get don’t-puke supplies for his best man, who had probably the worst stomach flu ever. Like, we’re really lucky he even MADE it to the wedding.

(I’m not going to post a pic of Scott in puke-mode; just imagine it; it was pretty bad.)

But it was all cool. Scott did NOT puke. Everything got done and, eventually, Trent and the boys got picked up at their hotel by the party bus, and they came to the Inn on Ferry Street to get us girls.

And then we saw each other for the first time…

Our first encounter on our wedding day.

First sight!

SNAP SNAP! Photo opp! Next we got to just cruise around town and drink some beers and take some badass Detroit-style wedding pics. With minimal posing, as requested by ME. Some faves…

Trent and I under the giant tiger at Tiger Stadium.


Our wedding party with Detroit's famous Joe Louis sculpture.

Welcome to Detroit! We will PUNCH YOU IN THE FACE! Or better yet, THE NECK!

Our wedding party in front of Michigan Central Rail Station.

We take wedding pics in front of abandoned buildings, yo.

By the way, these photos were all taken by our friend Char Denison. She was amazing, and she was more than just a photographer that day.

We were so happy we took all our photos BEFORE the wedding, but yeah — when they were done, we still had to go GET MARRIED. So we did.

We headed to the Piquette Plant, and our guests were already there, eating and drinking and checking out the old cars on the ground floor of the factory. Meanwhile, we scurried upstairs, where the ceremony and reception were to be held, to get ready and hide out. Only the weather was WAY HOTTER THAN EXPECTED and the freakin’ building was a furnace (at least, it felt like it to me!). So I spent most of this time just trying not to sweat, while people went around attempting to open all the ancient factory windows and round up industrial fans (including borrowing them from the storefront church across the street; that was my grandfather’s idea)…

Me trying to stay cool before the wedding.

First husband duty: KEEP ME COOL!

And then the guests started coming upstairs in the factory’s giant freight elevator, and we were all like, HOLY CRAP! THIS IS REALLY HAPPENING!

Guests coming up the elevator at our wedding.

Here they come!

Which we had KINDA doubted for a second, because the wedding was set to start at 6:15 PM on May 21, 2011, and that crazy guy had been predicting the rapture would happen at 6:00 PM that very day, but…

Nope — no rapture. So I went ahead and walked down the aisle on my 82-year-old dapper-as-hell grandfather’s arm (to some Stevie Wonder)!

Walking down the aisle with my grandfather.

Seriously such an amazing moment.

And Trent and I got married!

Our wedding ceremony

Married at the altar of Ford!

By our friend Ed, actually, who did an absolutely TERRIFIC JOB acting as minister (watch the video up there if you don’t believe me, but I know you do).

Oh, and Trent one-upped me on the wedding vows. He SANG HIS. Damnit. “For Once In My Life,” originally by Frank Sinatra (my grandparents’ favorite), famously covered by Stevie Wonder (whom, uh, I KINDA like, since I picked him to walk down the aisle to).

And then we smooched, and strutted happily back down the aisle to some Marvin Gaye, and into the next factory bay to finally FULLY relax and party…

Walking down the aisle as man and wife.

How sweet it is…

I don’t remember much about dinner; I think it was pretty good (thoughts?). I do remember, though, that there were some amazing speeches. I think I’ll always remember my sister’s best…

My sister giving a great speech at our wedding.


“A lot of times people will say to me, ‘Lisa’s left you some pretty big shoes to fill. How do you do it?’ And my response is always, ‘You don’t. You learn how to crack jokes about how big her feet are.’ And, although every sarcastic comment is my way of telling Lisa I love her, I know that sometimes she wishes that I would be more conventionally affectionate. So Lisa, today I promise not to mention what a nerd you are, how I refer to you as human Google, that you have a ‘Beautiful Mind,’ or how I sometimes think you’re the illegitimate love child of Clark Griswold and Rainman. I promise I won’t mention any of that. What a lot of people don’t realize about Lisa, is that underneath all the neurosis and savant-like thought processes, she has the single greatest capacity to love of anyone you’ll ever meet. In everything she does, her motivation is always a desire to help you and show you how much she cares. When she’s lecturing you about not consuming more than your 30 acres, or reciting the entire history and progression of Britain’s aristocracy, what Lisa is really telling you is, ‘I love you and want you to be just as interested in this as me so we can relate to each other.’ I thank God every day for bringing Trent into Lisa’s life. For a long time I believed my sister would never get married, mostly because I could never imagine her finding a man who was her equal. And then Trent came along, who can match her on an emotional plane, an intellectual plane, and most importantly, he can and does love her as much as she loves him. Which is no easy task. Finally Lisa, you excel at everything. At guitar, singing, academia, piano, art, writing, pom-pom, community organizing, beating MS, remembering species of frogs, sculpting food, mortgage lending, diamond mining, masonry, pharmaceutical development, quoting Shakespeare, quoting The Simpsons, quoting Munga, power lifting, traditional Russian dancing, geography, geology, cryptology, mapping the human genome, and juggling knives. So there is absolutely no reason to believe that you won’t excel at marriage. Now go have some perfect children. Congratulations and I love you!”

(She sent me the text some time ago; I don’t actually remember it THAT well, promise.)

By the way, did you notice my dress got SHORT? That was intentional, and only for style points, but it ended up coming in VERY HANDY for the unseasonably warm weather. Phew.

We didn’t do all the dancing and the cake cutting and stuff because we’re just not into that. The only things we did do were a first dance together, and one dance with Trent’s mom and my grandfather. And I’m glad we did those things, because I ended up getting to throw in an impromptu dance in the middle of it all with Munga…

And then we just partied. Really hard. All night. Really, what else do people want to do at weddings?

And we partied into the next day, when we went on a Detroit dive bar crawl…

Really, it was the greatest adventure of our lives, with all the stress and drama and unseasonably warm weather included. I wouldn’t change one thing about it. It was totally our style, and it set us up for the adventures of this past year and those surely to come as we create our dream home together.

To all of you who shared it with us, thank you.

And to our parents, especially Munga, for paying the bill… special thanks. 😉 The new Casa Temple is calling all your names (with a guest room, in gratitude; not to ask for more money; swearsies!).

My mother, sister, and I on my wedding day.

Wiz Women.


EDIT, 5/15/17:

Since Trent and I were married at the Piquette Plant and I originally wrote this post, I’ve been contacted by many brides asking for advice planning their weddings there. I don’t really have much to give, unfortunately; my wedding happened because my amazing mother, Marge, knew that I loved the building and that I had done research on it for my job many moons ago at the DIA. She and her bestie Char not only fully planned my wedding for me, they also blazed the trail into the whole idea of weddings at the Piquette. I would have gotten married in Reno for $80 and a free limo ride if not for them and their vision of bringing me back to my roots with a party that others are still emulating (and that the plant can now charge 5 figures for)…

…complete with Sanders Bumpy Cake.

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17 thoughts on “Newlyweds No More

  1. We are sitting here watching this, re-living the whole wonderful evening and WISHING THAT WE COULD DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN!! It was the best night of my life! Thanks for the plug! It was worth every penny! (Or dollar!) LOVE, Mom and the Family

  2. suki says:

    so I totally sobbed like a baby listening to your vows. 😛 Happy anniversary!

  3. Denise Zlonkevicz says:

    That was wonderful! Thank you for sharing that with us Marge! Lisa and Trent we wish we many many more truly blessed years. You are off to a awesome start!!!!!! Congrats!!!!!

  4. Mom - Joyce says:

    Thanks for the memories! You two are so good together; keep up the good work and know we are here for you when and if you need us. We love you and are incredibly proud of both of you! Mom and Bryce

  5. Carla Daniels says:

    A little misty eyed over here. So happy to be part of it all. Love you guys, happy anniversary.

  6. Char Denison says:

    I had so much fun that I just could not put the camera down. Thanks for allowing me to share in your special day.

  7. lisatemp says:

    Thanks, everyone! We’re so glad we had so many wonderful people involved in the day.

  8. Sarah Wisniewski says:

    I wish I could relive that day. What a great moment! Love you guys.

  9. Definitely misty eyed – I miss you all so much!!!

  10. Ellen says:

    I loved that first dance song, who’s the singer?

  11. Cindy (Phillips) Weflen says:

    Congrats on one year of marital bliss!!!

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