I am a sucker for traditions. Ever since I found out that there was such a thing as a "traditional" anniversary gift, I got all excited. As I have learned more about them and have heard the neat ways people interpret these things, it has gotten me even more excited. So since I seem to have anniversaries on the brain this week (imagine that!) I thought I would share some of the "traditional" anniversary gifts (and some of the neat ideas) I have come across.
First - paper (traditional) or clocks (modern)
My friend Leah's husband got her a gift certificate for a day at the spa as her "paper" gift. I've always been partial to this one. Jeff's step-dad was just hell bent to get Jeff's mom a clock for their first anniversary. Jeff was envisioning a nice mantle clock (what he calls an anniversary clock, for good reason!) Ray ended up purchasing a travel alarm clock. I don't know if he'll ever redeem himself for that one! My "brilliant" idea was to get a beautiful ink print drawing of the house done to hang over the sofa or the mantle. Well, lack of funds and foresight prevented me from getting this done in time but alas... Other nice paper things might be personalized stationary, photographs, books, or tickets to something.
Second - cotton (traditional) or china (modern)
Obviously monogrammed sheets or something are a pretty typical "cotton" gift. I'm not sure about the china. One girl I know of decided to use a "cotton club" theme and purchase a nice bar cabinet for her husband and stock it. I believe she got some nice cocktail napkins for the "true" cotton element. I have thoughts, but we'll see what happens this time next year!
Third - leather (traditional) or crystal/glass (modern)
Leather is pretty easy - desk sets, wallets, shoes, picture frames, or something of a more personal nature... I haven't come across anything particularly innovative here so I am open to suggestions. Knowing Jeff he would appreciate something leather for the truck! This may be one time where I might dip into the more "modern" for something glass - a glass bottle of liquor, a crystal decanter, some monogrammed glassware. I'm sure there are plenty of other ways to take this as well.
Fourth - fruit/flowers (traditional) or appliances (modern)
Yeah, no insights here except the obvious. I guess you could find something creative with a fruit or floral pattern. Send one of those "edible arrangements" maybe. Planting a tree or a bush is always a good idea. I personally don't think that I would be happy getting a small appliance as an anniversary gift at this point. Getting one as a Christmas gift one year was pushing it!
Fifth - wood (traditional) or silverware (modern)
Furniture is always a good idea for wood. In Jeff's case, I would probably lean more toward something for wood-working (or something sentimental like plaque or frame). A cedar plank for grilling might be nice, planting a tree (if you didn't do that on year 4) or building something together could be fun. Maybe make a cabinet to keep all your lovely anniversary gifts in! On a smaller scale there are lots of nice wooden pens, desk sets, boxes, and knives.
And what did Jeff and I get one another for our first anniversary? Well, I decided to go with the traditional "paper" and got him a book. More specifically, I got the big Alabama National Championship yearbook. I know he wanted it and would never buy it for himself. I also got him one of those little head massager spider-looking things. I had one from a million years ago that got thrown out in the great purge and I know he kind of misses it. He got me a new purse and all-in-one wallet I've been really wanting from Vera Bradley. Mine wasn't a surprise because he asked me last week if I was sure about which one I wanted and I actually ordered it! It came via FedEx on Saturday. Being the smart-alleck that he is, he also got me a surprise "paper" gift - a package of printer paper! I laughed really hard when I opened that one. I'm tempted to put it away and keep it for 25 years! He also got me a box of goobers because, when we were dating, he used to bring me goobers all the time. Those were not saved. They were devoured quickly. At least I shared!
I also got us both a little something (although it's not really an anniversary gift, that was just a convenient excuse) - 24 oz "giant" Tervis Tumblers. You know, those super-cute double-walled glasses with all kinds of cute things in them? His has the AL national championship logo in it. Mine just has a hot pink "S". I also got the travel lid for mine because I like them (ok, I'm basically six and need lids on most of my drinks), but he didn't get a lid because he'd never use it if he had it!
So next year I'm expecting cotton balls...