Walking through department stores, hand on scanner and head dreaming of shared dishes, sheets, and towels, is totes fun. The thing is, it can also be so darn stressful. There's the matter of learning to compromise and envision things together, of course, but there's also the all-too-overwhelming question of what you even need to register for. Euro shams? Ice buckets? Charger plates? It's enough to make any bride a little crazy, so I thought that today, I'd humbly offer you some of the best things I registered for, the things I wished I did, and what, in my opinion, is the best purchase you could ever make.
|Sheets | Food Processor | Frames | Skillet | Board Games|
Food Processor: I love, love, love to cook, and after a year and a half with a food processor, I'm not sure how I ever lived without one. Seriously, this thing can mince garlic, ginger, and onions way finer than a knife for sauces and stir-fries, shred a whole mountain of cabbage for slaws and my favorite, fish tacos (still talking about shredding the cabbage, not the fish, just so we're clear), pulverize chocolate, slice perfect carrot coins, and make a piecrust, a longtime source of baking intimidation for me, in a flash. Actually, all those conveniences make it perfect for saving time even when you don't like to cook. We received a bigger food processor than the one we registered for, with a few more gadgets like a mini bowl attachment and shredding disc, and I'm so glad. I won't worry about upgrading to a larger capacity when we have, God willing, lots of kids to feed one day. I definitely recommend getting a nice, roomy 14-cup one like this one that we received. Go big or go home, right?
Cast-Iron Skillet: Can I gush for a minute? About a heavy old piece of iron? During high school, my TV watching consisted largely of Food Network, and after hearing the virtues of cast iron on shows like Good Eats and Paula's Home Cooking, I bought this one when I moved into my first apartment my junior year of college. Simply put, I'm obsessed. These things cost less than 30 bucks and are so durable and solid, they're said to outlive you. You can grill and char meats without an actual grill, bake a cobbler, make heartier eggs than you get in a regular pan, and go back and forth from the oven to the stove. You don't need to cook with much oil, iron is a more natural material than Teflon and coated aluminum, which means it's healthier and can even add important iron to your diet, and oh, I could go on and on. I've given three of these pans as engagement presents, and I honestly think it eliminates the need for a large set of cookware, since it can do so many jobs. Even though cast iron can smoke so much sometimes that I set off the fire alarms in my college apartment building more than once (consider yourself warned), I'm committed for life.
Art & Picture Frames: From the "I never would've thought of that but I'm so glad I did" category: When you settle into your first little nest together, of course you'll want to decorate it. And, when you get your wedding photos back, of course you'll want to display them. It might not seem like the most natural choice, asking for home decor instead of appliances or linens, but a friend of mine advised me, and I'm so thankful for such an original piece of advice. Requesting a set of matching frames in all sizes, along with a few images you love, is a fantastic way to get a head start on furbishing.
Board Games: You didn't think this list would be all function and no fun, did you? Your newlywed days, when you'll want to spend plenty of time together and invite friends over to see your new digs, are, to me, the perfect time to start building a game collection.
Now. Surely I've left something off this list, so help me out! If you're married, what's the best wedding gift you received, what genius, unusual item has been the most helpful to you, and what do you wish you had put on your registry? If you're engaged, tell me what's at the top of your wish list!
P.S. Click here to read my latest column on Ignitum Today, where I talk about talking about sex.