You guys are fulfilling my wildest dreams with this wedding present discussion. It is such a relief to have people to talk about these things with, and it is a relief to Paul, too, I'm sure.
I started writing comments on your comments, but there were too many comments I wanted to comment on and I gave up. But I especially loved the idea some of you mentioned, to take something from the registry and make it more personal: adding recipes to cookware, etc. I LOVE that idea, and I wish I had consulted you creative people before sending off two cake pans in a box. At the very least I could have put in a cake mix! Ooh, or I could have gotten them the little cake-decorating kit I like so much! Well, next time.
The story of the KitchenAid mixer that was fulfilled from the registry but then never showed up--that haunts me. What could have happened to it? Did it just get checked "fulfilled" by total accident? Did someone buy it but then change their mind and keep it themselves? Did they have it shipped and it got lost in the mail and they're still miffed about not getting a thank-you note? Terrible to think of!
Oh, and I love the idea of registering with a charity! You know how at the end of a lot of registries you can also select a gift card option, with a little pull-down menu so people can specify how expensive a gift card? It would be great to have something similar at the end of a registry, with one or two charities.
All right, so we have discussed registries, now let's talk about non-registry-related wedding present stuff.
When my parents got married, they got many toasters. Many toasters. I can't remember how many, that's why I'm saying "many" twice like that, to communicate that there were more toasters than they could possibly use, but without getting corrected by my parents in the comments section.
When we got married, people joked about how many toasters we'd get, but we didn't get a single toaster. What we got a lot of were sets of cloth placemats with coordinating cloth napkins and napkin rings. I can't remember how many we got, but it was lots. So many, it got to be increasingly funny every time we opened another set. They were beautiful, and such a good gift idea, but I'm saying that was our "ha ha toasters."
So first what I want to know is what was YOUR toasters? What did you get lots of, and what did you get none of?
Next, what did you get that you didn't expect and wouldn't have asked for, but it turned out to be awesome? Someone gave us a set of Chicago Cutlery steak knives, and we never eat steak so I thought we wouldn't use the knives, but they're perfect for non-steak cutting jobs, and they came in a handy little holder that sits right on the counter, and I use them every single day. They're one of our very best gifts, and I never would have known I wanted them.
Another surprising and pleasing gift was a big box of Christmas stuff, mostly an assortment of ornaments. Our wedding was a couple of months before Christmas, and we didn't have much for a Christmas tree, so it was fun to get a "starter set" like that.
Next, what did you get that was a total failure, or really comically bad? Someone gave us an enormous (the size of a poster) cross-stitch with our names and our wedding date and clearly a whole lot of work done on the border--and there were two errors. My name was spelled wrong, and the date of our wedding was wrong. Ha ha ha ha ha! I mean, what do you do with that?
We also received a kit of wedding materials (book, inspirational plaque, daily devotional, etc.) put out by a well-known religious figure of a religion we don't belong to. Thereafter, we received regular mailings from this religious group, and when I say we strongly disagree with the political and social stances of this group, I am understating to keep things pleasant. I am an expert at writing thank-you notes, but this one was my greatest challenge.
Oh dear, that ends things on a negative note, doesn't it? Let's reflect instead on the funny cross-stitch! Ha ha ha! And now tell me all your wedding present stories: your toasters and your cloth napkins, your steak knives and your Christmas ornaments, your cross-stitches and your thank-you-note challenges.
Life-improving products, part 4 - (Continued from part 1, part 2, and part 3.) Stearns Youth Life Vest (photo from Amazon.com). I’d been too scared to take the kids to any body of water oth...