After desperately wanting to get out of the city in October, I was proposed to in New Hope, Pennsylvania, an idyllic country town, roughly an hour and a half from Manhattan. Beneath a beautiful covered bridge, my now fiance, Ryan, nervously dropped down to one knee, scraping it on his way, and opened a jewelry box sporting a MASSIVE rock. Don’t get too excited, it was a ring pop! He (and my mother, of course), thought it would be best if I approved of the ring chosen by Ryan before handing over the dinero. While I 100% agree with their decision to hold off (I can be very picky), he did a magnificent job, picking out my dream ring without any persuasion from me.
For days, I walked around with rose colored glasses, feeling like the luckiest girl in the world. I’m engaged! I thought tirelessly. I’m engaged to my best friend! Does life get any better? The answer: NO.
Not even week passed before I started getting asked THE question. Where are you registered? Registered? I thought. But I haven’t even chosen a venue, or picked a date, or tried on a dress! Registered?
The pressure became so consuming that I had no choice but to drag my ignorant little tushy (very little, sadly), to Bloomingdale’s. After picking up a scanner from the registry office, my mom and I got to work. If I can describe the experience in one word it would be overwhelming. I love to shop for antiques and vintage jewelry in Maine and North Carolina. I frequent thrift shops through out the city where I often find fabulous furniture and jewels, and estate sales in Westchester where I have uncovered amazing ’60’s couture and barely used chaise lounges. I’m not a modern girl, I don’t have modern taste (to the unfortunate disappointment of Ryan, who loves straight lines and solid colors).
As we perused the store, scanner clutched tightly to my sweaty palm, I felt my heart start to beat faster and faster. Flatware: Why do they have 100 forks that look the same? How do I pick? This pattern continued for every item in the store. The Eden Family suffers from what we call DDD – Dinner Decision Disorder. More recently DDD has been renamed by my brother, Zack, who has followed us to many bridal appointments, as Dress Decision Disorder. In this case I have RDD: Registry Decision Disorder. On day one, the only thing I remotely liked was a limited edition Michael Aram cheese plate sporting an onyx and mother of pearl board and gorgeous monkey handles (have I mentioned I love anything vintage-y with animals on it?). Oh yeah, and the cheese platter cost over $2,000.
I left the store feeling irritated and without a single item on my registry. What I did get was a bottle of wine. A big one.
Attempt two was a bigger disaster than the first. This time we brought Ryan and my father. The date was December 8th, I recall specifically because it was the same day that Ryan and I were hosting a holiday dinner for our friends in our apartment. Anyway, December 8th. Bloomingdale’s. 59th Street. Oh my holy crowds! My dad disappeared within two minutes, and after about an hour of indecision and endless shoulder bumping, I left the store in a hurry (perhaps it was a temper tantrum however I am clinically claustrophobic, so it’s ok. Right?) leaving my mom and Ryan on their own. We all eventually found each other outside. Luckily, no one seemed overly mad at me. It was overwhelming for the whole lot.
Again I left the store feeling irritated and with only a set of knives on my registry (Ryan’s pick, probably to stab me with). What I did get was many bottles of wine brought to my apartment thanks to my amazing friends, and my favorite way to deal with stress, lots of food, cooked by the amazing Heather Ricks.
The next Tuesday my mom and I figured we’d go again and try to get things done. Ryan had enough. He wouldn’t join us on anymore registry excursions. Can we switch places? We walked into Bloomingdale’s and figured the third time’s a charm, right? No. We spent an hour in the store that day, but instead of on the Registry floor, we spent the entirety of our time in the bathroom. Sick to our stomachs from the moment we walked in the door. Ironically, as soon as we left, we felt better. Will we ever get registered? At this point it was just getting funny.
Finally, mom and I realized we would never be able to do this on our own. With a plan in our heads and determination in our hearts, we marched into Bloomies earlier this week, and worked the floor with a registry consultant. AMEN. When we left the store that day I turned to my mom and said, “that was actually fun.” She agreed as we finally realized that we’re both made of the same ADD, RDD cloth. We needed someone with a focused mind and a clear sense of my needs.
If you’re registering, don’t make my mistakes. Use a consultant, they’re free, and beyond helpful. I was also gifted a set of Kate Spade champagne flutes, not necessarily my style, but lovely nonetheless!