Author Topic: Honeymoon fund dilemma  (Read 6734 times)

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Momiitz

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #30 on: February 15, 2014, 01:11:34 PM »
OP here

Everyone has been giving me some great advice and suggestions. I'm leaning toward buying something they can use on there trip. I'm not sure if they will even go on this trip though because they have only been gifted about $300 +/- on their registry.  Of course they might have received cash gifts that have not shown up on the registry.


TootsNYC

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #31 on: February 15, 2014, 02:01:44 PM »
If they may not even go on the trip, then why get them something for it?

My own tactic would be (especially given this) to pretend as if I never, ever looked at their registry, and just go get something that I thought would be beautiful or useful in their life together.


Sharnita

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #32 on: February 15, 2014, 09:01:03 PM »
If they may not even go on the trip, then why get them something for it?

My own tactic would be (especially given this) to pretend as if I never, ever looked at their registry, and just go get something that I thought would be beautiful or useful in their life together.

I think OP could get them something useful for travel in general since they have indicated an  interest and intent to do that as part of their future.  It doesn't have to be specific/limited to this trip.

gollymolly2

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #33 on: February 15, 2014, 09:11:10 PM »
Just because people haven't bought much off the registry yet doesn't mean that people still won't, or that they won't go on the trip anyway and pay for it themselves.

gellchom

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #34 on: February 18, 2014, 05:22:31 PM »
Jessica and her family (my husband's aunt, uncle and two more cousins) flew out to our wedding about 7 years ago and really helped out.  My husband's aunt gave us some embroidered items which were very nice (towels, aprons, and such).  The whole family also helped out with the flowers and making bouquets, cooking the food, setting up the buffet and even running the music (a DJ without all the announcements).  We did properly thank them for helping out. My MIL was the driving force to do and organize a homemade wedding.  MIL loves to host and decided to take all of this on. 

I really wanted to do something nice for his cousin Jessica and her fiance because the family did help out at our wedding and I liked the idea of being able to at least get them something nice for a wedding gift. 

Yeah, I would think you would!  Travel for 4, (hand?) embroidered gifts, flowers, bouquets, cooking, setting up the buffet, running the music -- it sounds like they did most of the main jobs of a wedding for you, in addition to traveling and giving you gifts. 

I would be giving this couple a MAJOR gift, even if your resources are a lot more modest than theirs.  I wouldn't put it toward the honeymoon registry, because I hate them. :)  I don't like to give cash, but that's probably what I would give this couple, because it would be a lot more than I would want to spend on something I chose for them, even though that's what I'd otherwise do -- I cringe at the phrase "buying off-registry," because it suggests that guests are expected to choose only gifts that the couple selected themselves from two or three stores, not choose things they think the recipients would enjoy or find useful.  I am with Toots on that one for sure.  That's why I disagree that registries that don't include all different price ranges are rude.  There's no obligation to buy only items on the registry.  So a registry that contains only, say, china and silver patterns does not mean that only china and silver are welcome; it means that the couple wants you to choose which salad bowl or vase or whatever you want to buy.

I cannot for the life of me understand your husband's attitude here.  After all these people's generosity and help, a greeting card?  Under the circumstances you relate, that would be dropping the big one.  Is he trying to scream, "I HATE YOU GET OUT OF OUR LIVES?"  I don't care how tacky or greedy he thinks that their registry is.  He didn't even have to look at it, let alone buy from it.

The one place I agree with your husband is that I would do something nice for Jessica's parents.  I'd send an arrangement of flowers to Jessica's parents (assuming they are the hosts of the wedding) a few days before the wedding with a note saying how you wish you could be there to celebrate with them and help them as they did you.

Momiitz

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #35 on: February 18, 2014, 06:18:15 PM »
Yeah, I would think you would!  Travel for 4, (hand?) embroidered gifts, flowers, bouquets, cooking, setting up the buffet, running the music -- it sounds like they did most of the main jobs of a wedding for you, in addition to traveling and giving you gifts. 

My mother-in-law was the one that ran the show for our wedding. This group of family members (aunt, uncle, cousin Jessica) helped out but did not run the show.  With the 20+ people that also helped out with all of these tasks it wasn't a whole lot, although we really appreciated their help as well as everyone else's who volunteered.

My husband's aunt gave us some very nice towels and aprons that were machine embroidered with our names and wedding date on them.  She was just getting into the business of embroidery and was hoping that people would see her work and want to order from her. She did give out cards for her business with our blessing. Also we did not ask them specifically to help with the wedding, they asked what they could do to help.

When I mentioned just sending them a card, it was because I was feeling overwhelmed by the amount they were asking for on their honeymoon registry.  At first I was thinking "don't feed the gimmie pig".  But then I started thinking about Jessica and from what I know of her I don't believe it was gimmie pig attitude but just being na´ve and probably a little excited when they set up the registry. More of a it never hurts to ask attitude.

TootsNYC

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #36 on: February 18, 2014, 07:24:32 PM »
Quote
But then I started thinking about Jessica and from what I know of her I don't believe it was gimmie pig attitude but just being na´ve and probably a little excited when they set up the registry. More of a it never hurts to ask attitude.

I think this was very smart of you! If you've ever checked out those registries, the guidance they give to couples is really over the top. So it's not really accurate to assume that the registry tells you anything about the couple, especially if you know other things about them in real life.

Also, the registry is sort of programmed to round WAY up in terms of dollar amounts. Like it'll ask for $1,000 airfare for a flight that most people could get for $500 or even less.

So, good on you for thinking again, and for including all the info you know about Jessica & Co. in her real-life interactions.

Alli8098

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #37 on: February 19, 2014, 09:20:00 PM »
Remember, there is no hard and fast rule that you have to give a gift off of a couple's registry.

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SingActDance

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #38 on: February 20, 2014, 01:09:03 PM »
I really like the idea of an REI giftcard. It's clear they value experiences over home items.

Another option would be to "shop" for an experience in their hometown, instead of for the honeymoon. Maybe a two-month membership to a local rock-climbing gym or yoga studio. If it were me, I'd be infinitely more excited to receive something like that as opposed to pots & pans.
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LETitbe

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #39 on: March 01, 2014, 08:15:31 PM »
If you want to shop, I also think the idea of getting them something that goes with travel, but that's tangible. I know people are recommending REI GCs, but the OP explicitly states she likes to shop, so maybe something more like a really nice tent (if they like camping), a nice set of luggage, or something else that fits the type of vacations they like (i.e. a nice camp cooking set if they like camping, fancy beach towels if they like sunny vacas, or personalized carry ons if they travel by plane often.
Even aside from the travel theme, I think it'd be fine to get them something of another theme you know they enjoy as a couple. For instance, a wine of the month club for wine connoisseurs, or personalized accessories for their motorcycle if they are bike enthusiasts (yes, we know a couple for whom we buy things like this)...I wouldn't get them home goods just because that's the wedding standard, and what you prefer, but I definitely think there's room for you to do some shopping and to get something off registry that's appropriate.

lmyrs

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #40 on: March 03, 2014, 04:15:39 PM »
I think it's perfectly fine to buy a gift that isn't on the registry. But I think it's very important that a gift giver buy something that they genuinely think the recipient will like. Not just something that that the giver thinks the recipient ought to like.

And, that means that if the giver doesn't know whether the recipient would appreciate the towels or the tent or the rock climbing card or the blender, then they should ask. Ask someone who does know the couple well enough. Because just because they're planning an elaborate honeymoon to, say Grenada, doesn't mean that they'd want to go skiing or camping.

PS - what's REI?

cabbagegirl28

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #41 on: March 03, 2014, 04:30:05 PM »
I think it's perfectly fine to buy a gift that isn't on the registry. But I think it's very important that a gift giver buy something that they genuinely think the recipient will like. Not just something that that the giver thinks the recipient ought to like.

And, that means that if the giver doesn't know whether the recipient would appreciate the towels or the tent or the rock climbing card or the blender, then they should ask. Ask someone who does know the couple well enough. Because just because they're planning an elaborate honeymoon to, say Grenada, doesn't mean that they'd want to go skiing or camping.

PS - what's REI?

Re end bold: It's an outdoor goods store.


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gellchom

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #42 on: March 03, 2014, 05:38:29 PM »
I think it's perfectly fine to buy a gift that isn't on the registry. But I think it's very important that a gift giver buy something that they genuinely think the recipient will like. Not just something that that the giver thinks the recipient ought to like.

And, that means that if the giver doesn't know whether the recipient would appreciate the towels or the tent or the rock climbing card or the blender, then they should ask. Ask someone who does know the couple well enough. Because just because they're planning an elaborate honeymoon to, say Grenada, doesn't mean that they'd want to go skiing or camping.

I mostly agree with this.  Certainly I think we'd all agree that gifts like religious objects or books about a religion that the couple don't adhere to, or a subscription to a magazine that espouses views with which they disagree, or BBQ tools for vegetarians, and so forth, are completely inappropriate.

But I recall from my own wedding (back when the surface of the earth was starting to cool) that often our parents' generation had better ideas than we would have ourselves.  They knew better than we did what we would need in years to come, when we began to take over hosting holidays and such, and what kinds of things break or wear out more so that you need more than you think you do.

Our peers (we were in our mid-20s) tended to give us things like a bed tray, a subscription to the NY Review of Books, and a picnic basket.  Our parents' peers gave us more "boring" stuff -- how would we EVER use all those platters and pitchers and tablecloths? 

Now, please understand, we appreciated and loved and used all these things, from both groups.  But almost 32 years later, I can tell you which things we ultimately have really depended on and needed, even if we didn't touch them for the first few years (yep, EVERY ONE of those platters and pitchers and tablecloths), and which were a fun novelty but after a while were mostly just a storage problem.

I think that the difference is that our peers were thinking in terms of what we would like to have RIGHT NOW, and the older generation was looking down the road several years and chose gifts meant to last a long, long time, even as our lives and interests changed.  (There is nothing wrong with either kind of gift, and in fact I think it's nice to have some of both.)  A honeymoon fund is probably the ultimate "right now" gift, which might be part of the reason many people don't like to give that, even if they don't find it crass or don't care.

[I saw the same principle in action years later when we had our first baby.  Our childless friends gave us those darling newborn size outfits that you're lucky if the kid can even wear twice, and that's assuming the season lines up right.  Then other gifts -- from people who had raised kids themselves -- arrived in sizes 2, 3, and even 4.  "What are they thinking?!" we wondered.  I would never have told them that's what we wanted if they had asked.  But they knew better than we did.  Again, it was nice to have some of both kinds of gifts, but was really great to have a few cute new outfits ready and waiting each time the kid grew a size, and we certainly got a lot more use out of them.]

I'm guessing that most younger couples getting married would tend, like the young friends in our story, to be more "now-focused."  And that's why I don't agree 100% that it's important to buy only what you know that the couple has already expressed an interest in, and if you don't, then you must ask them. 

Besides, if you miss the mark and get them something they don't want (e.g. wrong color place mats) or don't need (e.g. a blender when they already have a good one), they can exchange it or give it as a gift to someone who does.  (So do avoid, unless you are SURE they will want it, things like monogrammed items, consumables, and artwork).

kudeebee

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #43 on: March 03, 2014, 07:22:34 PM »
Since the hc lives on the other coast, you don't have much interaction with them.  I would be hesitant to buy them anything travel related unless you find out, perhaps from the bride's mother, that this is something that they would like or need or what specific brand/item that they want.  Our family camps, but we are picky with the type of tent, stove, etc that we get.  Same for suitcases.  Many people are picky about sunscreens, too.   

Or, if you do get something, make sure it is from a store that is in their area and that it can be returned easily.  I would also hate to send something, spend extra money on shipping, only to have an item returned and perhaps not have the shipping refunded.  I would rather that the couple have that money.

I know you like to shop, but in this case the hc has chosen a honeymoon registry.  Instead of giving to this fund, send them a check for the amount you want to give.  Then they can use it for the registry, to travel, for household goods, for travel items, etc.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2014, 07:24:20 PM by kudeebee »

gellchom

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Re: Honeymoon fund dilemma
« Reply #44 on: March 04, 2014, 12:09:41 AM »

I know you like to shop, but in this case the hc has chosen a honeymoon registry.  Instead of giving to this fund, send them a check for the amount you want to give.  Then they can use it for the registry, to travel, for household goods, for travel items, etc.

This sounds to me like the "you are only supposed to buy registered items or you are ignoring what they want" school of thought.  But not only is there absolutely no such rule, it may not even be what the couple wants.  Just because a couple has a registry -- any kind of registry -- that doesn't mean that they don't affirmatively want gifts their guests choose for them, too.  What about couples that only register pattern items like linens, dishes, flatware, and stemware -- which until fairly recently was what everyone did -- are you saying that guests should either buy those things or give cash?  Why?  Do you do that for birthdays and Christmas, too -- only give gifts the recipients themselves pre-selected, on the assumption that those are the only welcome gifts?

We all hear about brides who believe their guests must only buy them things they registered.  (On eHell, they are often called bridezilla or gimme-pig.)  But they aren't the only brides out there.  Some people prefer gifts that are the personal expression of the giver, or just plain surprises, or a family heirloom, or special items that aren't available at the two or three stores where they registered.

The point is that it isn't ignoring the couple's wishes to buy them a gift they didn't register for.  The existence of a registry does not mean that the couple wants only those items or else cash.  There surely are some, probably many, such couples, but that does not translate into a presumption for all couples.