A Simple Wedding Anniversary

It’s been a whole year since my husband and I said “I do” in Indiana! Who could have known we’d be celebrating from our new home in LA?

Wedding photoSo, with a year under our belts, we thought long and hard about how to celebrate our first anniversary. Do we buy gifts? Go out to a fancy dinner? Go on a weekend getaway?

I looked into it, and it turns out that there’s actually a “traditional” gift type for this first year. The theme is paper, so websites recommend things like love letters (which is awesome) and gift certificates (which are less meaningful in comparison).

Don’t get me wrong, I do think that there is some sweet sentiment behind the traditional gifts and ideas for a first year anniversary. But we’re not that traditional.

I ruled out gifts early on because I wanted this to be a team effort – if we were going to spend money, I’d rather do it together.

We ruled out dinner, too, since it was Mother’s Day and because we can make an equally nice dinner at home.

So should we go away for the weekend? With the rabbits still getting to know each other, we didn’t want someone else to have to watch them. They’ve been fighting a bit, which makes them difficult to keep an eye on. So no getaway!

What did we do instead?

A getting-stuff-done staycation

Okay, so that sounds like an odd way to spend a first anniversary, but we had a blast. We finally made the IKEA run we’d been planning for weeks and got the apartment in tip-top shape. We drank good beer, took walks, watched Netflix and played games to top it all off.

Oh and also I got to meet someone I’ve been dying to meet since high school. Josh Groban was doing an album signing a mile away from where I live:

Meeting Josh Goban

I can’t smile any bigger than this, folks. I met Josh Groban!


Thoughts on anniversary gifts

Anyways. We considered our weekend of drinks, Josh Groban, and IKEA our gift to ourselves. When it comes down to it, an anniversary is more about the “us” than the “you” and me.”

Anniversaries are not birthdays or Christmas, so why should they be like those more traditional gift-giving holidays? I sure don’t want Victor to give me a list of things he wants for “his” anniversary. I want to plan it all out together.

The Minimalists have a couple of great posts on the idea of gift-giving that I think are especially relevant for days like anniversaries. Moving forward, they’ll be good bases for handling those traditional gifting holidays too.

I wanted this year to set a precedent for anniversaries to come. If we do get gifts, I see them being things we will use and enjoy together, like a pair of bikes or camping gear.

I’ve asked my husband to consider this type of anniversary moving forward – one where we spend tons of time together and make joint decisions about what, if at all, we should gift ourselves. The single most important thing is that we get to be together.

How has simplifying changed the way you look at anniversaries or other gift-giving days?


4 thoughts on “A Simple Wedding Anniversary

  1. Time and experiences is so key, well done, nice post! I have struggled with gifting, not so much on what I expect for me from others, because that’s really nothing. But, what I might want to give others. I have put a lot of thought into it and have spoken to family. It’s tough, but I am trying to sell them on creating experiences where we all do something together for the holiday’s, maybe work at a soup kitchen for others around Thanksgiving, or take a cooking/pottery class together for Christmas. The other tough part is with young kids. I just attended my cousins birthday yesterday and thought about getting him a few different things. But as I was looking in the store I though, hmm, I’m just going to give one cool gift, wrapped in reusable or recyclable paper. (environmentally conscious as well. ) In the end it’s about being mindful and looking at what really holds value in life.

    Congratulations on year one too!


    • Thank you so much Darren! It is tough, but kudos to you for working towards experience-based gifts. I’d like to do that with our nephews someday, and I think that volunteering is a great idea!

  2. Found your blog via The Minimalists. My husband and I aren’t minimalists, but I have been hardcore decluttering and he seems to have caught the bug because our garage is currently looking amazing. Just the other day we both took the “love language” quiz (http://www.5lovelanguages.com/profile/) and didn’t choose any answers correlating to receiving gifts. It was almost relieving to know that objects weren’t important to us!

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