I knew I would be giving gifts during our rehearsal dinner, but I did not I would be receiving gifts, too!

While we were waiting for our food to arrive, my soon-to-be father-in-law gave a touching toast. He even choked up a bit when he acknowledged that his “baby boy” was getting married.

He then turned it over to my soon-to-be mother-in-law, who surprised me with a sweet little speech. She explained that when she moved from the east coast to the west coast, Nick’s sister gave her a Tiffany’s heart necklace and said that they would always be close in heart. Mother-in-law later gifted the same heart necklace to her daughter and daughters-in-law. And now it was time to welcome a new woman into the family! I’m privileged to join a family with such strong and devoted women. And what a sweet tradition!

(Side note: When Nick was shopping for a necklace to give to me on our first Christmas together, his sister told him he was not allowed to get the heart necklace. You know what that means … she suspected we may end up together even way back then!)

Next it was our turn. Nick and I presented gifts to everyone playing a part in our big day.

I already told you about the ruby red earrings (I chose The Peach Tree) and the clutches I got for my girls. They loved both! I also slipped chapstick and tic-tacs into each clutch because I didn’t think they should be empty.

In addition to the awesome frames that Nick assembled for the guys, he also had mugs engraved with their initials. After the boys unwrapped them, we collected them back to bring to the reception the following night. Also, our dads got mugs that said “Father of the Bride” and “Father of the Groom” with the date. And we couldn’t leave the bride and groom without sweet drinking vessels. Ours said “Mr.” and “Mrs.,” of course.


The mothers got handkerchiefs. You know, in case they got a little teary eyed at the ceremony.


{from Holly Sew}

We also gave photobook “vouchers” to my parents and his parents. After we receive all of our professional photos, we’d like for them to choose their favorites, and we will design and print photobooks just for them. I’m actually really looking forward to trying out Blurb or Snapfish or Mpix. (Do you have a preference?)

Last, but not least, our Ring Bearer. And another brilliant idea from Nick! We had a baseball bat engraved with “Most Valuable Ring Bearer” and his name and our wedding date. During dinner, the little guy asked me whose  bat was sticking out of the shopping bag. He’s so observant! I told him it was a gift for Uncle Nick, and he had to keep it a secret. Boy was he surprised when we pulled it out of the bag and gave it to him!


Just as my almost husband and I were getting ready to part, he pulled me aside. He gave me a small box with a note on top. It said, “Since I don’t have much luck getting flowers to you, I wanted to deliver these in person.” (case in point) I was stumped! I tore into the box and found a bottle of Daisy, the sweetest fragrance from Marc Jacobs.

So be prepared, ladies — there could be a few surprises coming your way even before your wedding day! Do you have anything special planned for your groom, family, or friends?