Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Wedding Registry Tips for "Conscious Consumers"



I know, I know: this is my wedding, I should do it however I want. And we didn't want a registry.

But when your families are all very traditional, old-school,  farmer-type people, they like their registries. We were not going to do a registry, but we kept hearing "Where are you registered? How will I know what to get you if you're not registered? Well you should make a small registry anyways, if anything but to give people ideas of your style."

Let me say this: I would not consider us minimalists. I would consider us "conscious consumers." Or, at least, trying to be. I recently went through our house & donated a bunch of our stuff. Things that we don't wear, or don't use, or don't need, or don't serve a purpose. I got rid of a lot of things but, to be honest, I'd like to comb through all our belongings again. I really felt  a rush of relief when I did that purge, & it feels great to clean out the junk! (Not like we had a lot of junk, but we were saving things for this or that, when we didn't need to.) 
And it is euphoric to go to a store, look around, and walk out without buying anything, because we're being more conscious of the things that deserve a spot in our home. 

So that means, for our wedding registry, we didn't want a bunch of stuff from people that won't serve us a useful purpose. So here are some ideas on what to put on your registry if you're a conscious consumer like us. 



Wedding Registry Tips for Conscious Consumers
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Use MyRegistry.com

MyRegistry.com is a website that allows you to put anything on the internet as a registry item. It also allows you too see, on one page, all the stores this couple is registered at. 

Let's say you're registered at Target and Wal-Mart. Both registries will appear on one site. Cool, huh? 

But not only that! Again, you can add anything from the internet onto your MyRegistry. For example: there is this cute little boutique store in my small town of less than 500 people. I LOVE shopping there, as it keeps money local and they have really nice stuff. I love their soy max welts. And why not register for something I use up all the time? So I go to MyRegistry.com, login, click "Add Gifts", and follow their steps. 



I link that registry item with the store's website and boom! Now our guests know that I wouldn't mind having some more soy wax melts from our local boutique. We also registered for wine from a local winery, just by linking their website to our registry. Which brings me to...

Register for Useful, Every Day Items

Wine.
Wax Melts. 
Cocoa almonds.
Candles.

I mean, you love those items, and use them every day... why not register for them?

Register for Items that You'll Use Again & Again

Towels.
Silverware.
A hand mixer.
Mixing bowls (with lids!)
Glass food containers.
Board Games.
Blenders.
Heated Blankets.
A desk.
A grill.
Oven mitts. 
Tumblers.
Curtain Rods.
Lamps.
Sheets.

And don't be afraid to register for something to upgrade something you already own...

If you want a stainless steel whisk to replace your flimsy Dollar Tree one, register for it! If you want a can opener that's $9 more than the one you currently have, register for it! 

Okay, Okay, Here it Is: Our Registry

Let's get down to the bare bones of it. Need ideas? Just curious? Well, this is mine & James' wedding registry:


Yup, we made a Honeymoon Fund on our MyRegistry page. Did anyone contribute online? No. But we didn't think anyone would. New towels would be nice to replace our tattered current ones. We could always use new bed sheets and spare bed sheets, a bench would be cute on our future porch. Glass food containers - seriously, I use the heck out of them and I got to replace my icky old plastic ones! A new soup spoon to replace our plastic one... new silverware so ours all match (but isn't necessary, so we didn't worry about this one much.) We registered for folding chairs, as we are constantly borrowing them from my parents. I registered us for Board games, because we host Thanksgiving and Christmas sometimes and the family always wants to play games!  

Yup, more Board games! We registered for new sink heads, as we have some pretty old, drippy ones. Also on there is gift cards to Menards, as James buys all his tools and building materials there. A picnic table because we love to eat outside. A step stool for James to use in the garage or me to use painting in the house. Ladder golf as we have gatherings a few times a year and why not? A heated blanket for the car, as -20℉ weather can sure make a girl cold. A heated blanket for the house, to cut down on heating bills. A portable grill, as we don't have a grill right now! 

Jim seen this boot scraper at Wal-Mart and said "Register us for that!" which he didn't say very often, so I did. We work in the barn a lot so a boot scraper could come in handy. He also said to register him for a tow jack, so I did. (He works on cars.) I registered us for a dehydrator, but I feel a little iffy on this one. With 13 apple trees, I figured we could dehydrate some apples for snacks. Board games... Camping forks! We don't have these and we have several fires a year, so I thought "why not?!" A cookie rack, which I didn't know I needed until I had one - so handy! A baking mat... my friend swore these are wonderful. We didn't get this gift, but that's okay. A snorkel set, because we snorkel every trip and we always have to pay a place to rent a set, when we can get our own for the same price and use it forever. And a metal watering can, to replace my plastic one.

We do a lot of canning and I thought "We should get some heat-proof gloves to make it easier than oven mitts." And we got these and I use them daily. LOVE THEM. We did not have a blender, so I registered us for one. Yup, I use it weekly for my Chia Seed Pudding! I seen this silicone drying mat on someone else's registry and decided we could replace our fabric one with this. Got it and like it. Aldi gift cards cause that's where I do all our grocery shopping. Local wine cause we like to have a glass here & there! Those soy wax melts I desire and use almost daily. A gift card to that boutique store in town that I heart. A new bath mat, as we don't have any. Kitchen rags to replace our old ratty ones. A hand mixer, as we don't have one, and I don't have the space for a stand mixer, nor do I want one. A new potato masher, as ours is wooden, but I'm glad we didn't receive this, as I really do love our wooden one. A bread baking dish with a lid - we did get this and I love it, especially now that I bake bread weekly! 

A new can opener to replace our Dollar Tree one. Bamboo tongs - not sure why I wanted these so bad but we got them and I use them monthly. Oven mitts which I no longer need, now that I have those Hot Hands gloves! Dish rags. GLASS mixing bowls to replace our plastic ones. We did get those, but someone also got use melamine mixing bowls, which are lighter and I LOVE, so I will regift the glass ones. A new comforter cause we could use a nice warm winter one. More sheets because I love sheets and you can't have enough. A decorative pillow - yup... not very conscious of me. Plaid couch pillows to replace our unmatching yellow ones... Sheets...

More sheets... A welcome mat (frivolous.) A wagon for the farm, which would be useful! A new paper towel holder to get our rusty one off the counter & free up some counter space. Lamps for the bedroom, as we don't have any. A toilet paper holder, as we don't have a spot in our tiny bathroom to put a hook on the wall. (Didn't get this but I do plan to buy!) Wall decor... Towels... 

A cute bench for my garden. James' favorite movie on DVD. A steam mop to replace our old mop. A printer, as we don't have one! Candles cause we go through them like candy. A nicer whisk. New cookie sheets to replace our rusty ones. A desk, as we don't have one. Camping Sandwich cookers, because we use these up at the cabin and LOVE them and want some for ourselves. A new fire ring so I can sit outside, by the house, and have a small fire, and not have to have a fire in the huge bon fire pit, far away from the house.

A new knife so I can chop things. Glass baking dishes with lids! A folding table for when we have people over so we don't have to keep borrowing my parents' one. Curtains for the bedroom to make it look nice. A carpet stain washer, as we borrow my parents' huge carpet washer twice a year. I wanted a small one because I don't plan to have as much carpet in the next 5 years. A toaster oven to replace our broken Pizzazz pizza maker. A new shower curtain to update the colors of our bathroom. 


And that's it! 

We had a pretty good reason for everything on our registry. Everything that was added to the list was thought out carefully. Everything we got, we use. Everything we got that we won't use, was either returned or will be re-gifted. And that's okay! You don't have to keep things just because someone bought them for you. We were gifted with a roaster, but I already have one, so I returned it. My mother was a bit taken aback by this, but I explained to her that we have a small home and can't just store things that we'll never need. She was timid about it, as she doesn't want the person who gave us the roaster to find out we returned it, but they'll never know, so it won't matter. We still appreciate the gift, but see no reason in having two, just to keep the gifted one. 

We really got a lot of wonderful wedding gifts from our loved ones and we use every one that we kept. Having a registry wasn't such a bad thing after all. As long as you know you'll use the items regularly, then your registry will be so useful. 


Good luck!
Ash

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Chia Pudding

Well.

It has been a hot minute since I've been here to write! 

Why?

I.
got.
MARRIED!

Wooo!

I'm officially off the market & I married that James fella.


Everything was great. Beautiful. Perfect. 

Eeeek!

Okay, enough about all that mushy love junk. 

I think I can redeem my absence with this recipe. It has become my new favorite breakfast & it's just one of those recipes that you just know will be with you the rest of your life. Not kidding, it's that: 1. easy 2. tasty 3. diverse. 4. cheap 5. healthy. I mean... this is, legit, one of the best, if not thee best, recipe I've come across. 

3 ingredients. THREE. It just blows my mind. 

I had a really tough time finding a yogurt that had wholesome ingredients, was affordable, tasted good, & had low sugar. Coconut milk has 1 gram of sugar in it. 1 gram! I no longer need yogurt. This stuff replaces yogurt in my life. 






Chia Pudding
Coconut Milk (canned)
Frozen Fruit (I love strawberries best)
Chia Seeds
Vanilla (optional)
Toppings (optional)

Now, for this recipe, I had a video I was going off of, but I mostly just wung (winged?) it. Into a blender, I put about 2 cups frozen fruit and half a can of coconut milk. This will make about 2-3 small dishes of this stuff. I also add in a dash of vanilla. Blend this until mixed well. Pour the mix into dishes. Take a few teaspoons of chia seeds and mix it in each dish. Put a lid on each dish and refrigerate overnight. In the morning, top with fruit, coconut, granola, etc. 

Here is the video I learned this from:



TRY THIS. 

It could just replace yogurt in your diet, too! 

Note: I did try this with coconut milk from a carton, and it was very liquidy the next day.

You can find canned coconut milk in the baking aisle or the Asian food aisle. I have found it in Wal-Mart & in local grocery stores. The frozen fruit & chia seeds I got at Aldi. 

Do yourself a solid and make this stuff. Just try it once & amuse me. But comment below to let me know how it went! 

Marital Bliss & Coconut Love,
Ash