The actress, 34, hit Paris with three of her closest girlfriends for a whirlwind pre-wedding weekend on Jan. 20. Gearing up for her nuptials to showbiz talent agent Jim Toth, 40, Witherspoon – whose Parisian getaway included wedding gown fittings, says a source – has made it clear that she is eager to begin her new life with the low-key Toth.
"He makes her laugh," an insider tells PEOPLE in this week's cover story. "She's truly enjoying her life right now."
After revealing her heartbreak following her split four years ago from ex-husband Ryan Phillippe, 36 – with whom she shares custody of their kids Ava, 11, and Deacon, 6 – the actress has embraced finding love again with Toth.
"He's a grown-up who's really ready to take the next step," says a Witherspoon friend. "He's a family-oriented guy, and that's all she ever wanted."
For more on this story, pick up this week’s issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday