Friday, January 15, 2010

Memory Box Groom’s Gift

If you read my earlier post about our budget breakdown, you may have noticed a couple things missing among the many “to buys” filling Stephen and I’s list – gifts for each other.

As unromantic as it may sound, he and I agreed right from the get-go, and especially once we realized how much we’d be increasing our budget, that the wedding day itself, along with our soon-to-follow Hawaiian honeymoon cruise, will be our only gifts to each other. And on top of that, we decided to forgo birthday and holiday gifts, instead putting the money saved right into our wedding fund.

Well, the secret’s out. I broke the rules – sort of. For Stephen’s birthday yesterday, I gave him a personal, romantic gift that didn’t cost me a penny, and that he said means more to him than anything I could possibly have bought.

What was it? A memory box revealing our history through random odds and ends collected during over three years of traveling, experiencing and exploring together. Ever since our very first date, I’ve saved small reminders of fun things we’ve done, hiding them away in a shoebox in my dresser until the right moment. Among the widely varied collection is a carryout bag from the restaurant we went to for our first dinner, several playbills from Broadway shows, brochures from wineries, theme parks and historical sites, plus keepsakes from our Central American cruise and a few assorted movie ticket stubs.

And since those last hurried days before the wedding are sure to be filled more with triple checking lists, packing, and squaring things away with vendors than they are with romantic reminiscing, I transferred the mementos into a pretty gift box we had on hand, attached a card, and left the box for Stephen to find when he got home from work on his birthday.

Like this idea, but haven’t been collecting since the early days? If your guy likes romantic surprises, creating a collection of mementos saved throughout your engagement could also be a sweet gift idea that won’t cost you more than the price of a nice box or scrapbook.

Are you and your groom exchanging gifts? What will you give him on or before the wedding day?

(Photo Credit: Heather Warren)


  1. Our budget is very small and doesn't leave much in the way of gifts (for ourselves or for the bridal party!), but I just love this idea and I may copy it... or do something similar. =)

  2. I dont think that sounds unromantic at all. How much more romantic can you get than throwing yourself a wedding?

  3. I love this idea! We haven't really talked about gifts for the day but I would rather have something meaningful like this any day!

  4. That is such a sweet gift. :) M and I aren't exchanging wedding gifts either, but I'd love to be able to put something together like this for him. Luckily, I save everything. :)

    Happy belated birthday to Stephen!

  5. We haven't discussed gifts yet - but I have already bought him a pair of cufflinks made out of circuit-boards from etsy (he is an electrical engineer). I am thinking of also getting him a Wii or PS3. Not romantic like your gift to your fiance, but we really aren't the "romantic" types. I love your idea, though - what a great way to give a gift and still save your hard-earned cash!

  6. MY fiance doesn't really like to receive traditional gifts but it be nice to surprise him with something creative or sentimental. Ur idea sounds really romantic and I'm sure he will love it.

  7. I have a feeling Mr Fix It won't think to get me a 'wedding gift' and I am not one to bring it up. I did get him a pair of nice cufflinks with a little 'bling' on them to 'pimp' him out for the wedding day. He doesn't know about it and since in my tuxedo post he kept raving about wanting to 'stand out' I figured this would be a simple way to get him a useful gift that will also help him stand little as it is. They were only about $90 on sale at Nordstroms.

    I love your idea! I used to save things like that all the time but haven't done so for many years. However, I did give Mr Fix It this great memory book for Christmas 2 years ago. You can find them in card stores or online nowadays...they're just simple books that have questions or direction on specific things (memories) you can write in them about your relationship. He loved it because it reminded him of things he forgot about. It asked questions about places you've traveled, how you met, your fave things about the other person, why you love them, a funny or embarassing story, etc.