Marriage and Lisa Marie: Mine, Mine, Mine . . .

Two wedding-registry experiences with one happy result.

With the wedding fast approaching, Andrew and I knew it was time to hit the stores for the planning event we were most looking forward to: creating our registry. The spoiled child inside me was just giddy to walk around a store and point to things we wanted to own, regardless of their practicality or price. I’ve been impatiently waiting to start the registry since the day we got engaged, so Andrew finally conceded as we trekked over to Macy’s on a rainy Saturday afternoon.

As we sat down with our registry consultant, she explained the many incentive programs that are associated with purchases. I retained very little of these explanations because all I was thinking while she spoke was “Give. Me. The. Gun.” My mind was prancing around the store, shooting that little registry gun at all the amazing items. When she went to hand us the gun and Andrew reached out, I quickly snatched it and just looked at him, and he clearly understood from that look that I’d be controlling the handheld machine.

Andrew and I have lived together for years, so a lot of people questioned what we’d register for that we actually needed. While “need” may be too strong a word, we’ve been using our parents’ hand-me-down dishes and our own discount-store furniture since we got our first apartment after college. In many ways, our condo still feels like a hodgepodge of displaced items, which isn’t what we want as young adults. Matching plates, real silver, more than one set of towels—these are the things that will make our house feel even more like our home. So while there were some disagreements on specific items (I still don’t understand why we don’t need a cake platter), we were in it with the same mindset, which helped streamline the process.

While Macy’s served as a great place for things such as everyday china and glassware, we found that some day-to-day items were too pricey there. We decided to supplement our first registry with a second one at Bed Bath & Beyond because we’d had success there when we doubled the size of our living space. That registry experience was definitely different than Macy’s; the complete chaos inside Bed Bath & Beyond can initially be overwhelming. While the Macy’s representative gave us the gun and let us go on our way, the Bed Bath & Beyond rep stayed with us and escorted us around the store. At first this was uncomfortable because Andrew and I both wanted the freedom to have candid discussions about the items. But after a few minutes, we realized that she had a lot of great suggestions, especially for a couple who had lived together for so long. The second registry was the complete opposite of the first, but the combination of the two created the perfect wish list for our new home furnishings.

With so many folks traveling to be part of our wedding day, we certainly don’t want people to feel obligated to bring us a wedding present. But if they choose to bring us a present, they can be confident that we’ll enjoy anything from our registry.

Lisa Marie, a local bride-to-be, writes every Friday about planning her wedding, which will be in Washington in July. To follow her adventures from the beginning, click here.