J.V. asks from Wheaton, IL on February 22, 2009
In 5 weeks, we are off to Ireland for a wedding. I've met my husband's cousin a few times, but I don't know the couple that well. I would like to bring something "American."
You ladies are always great at coming up with ideas and things, so thoughts? This is a couple in their late 20s that have been together since HS. They have a house, but that literally is all I know.
I'm thinking of spending around 100.
Would something like a set of steak knives be silly?
So What Happened?™
Thanks for all the suggestions everyone.
My husband INSISTS that we just give them money. I hate giving money, but they are his cousins, he knows Ireland better than I (born and raised in Dublin), so I guess I will just go along with what he wants.
Of course we are broke since this trip is costing a small fortune, and we will have to spend more if we are giving cash....But we've yet to visit the in-laws since having our daughter, so in all fairness to his family, I really shouldn't complain about anything.
K.K. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2009
I know you said you are already giving money...but a fun gift...send pizza from Lou Malnatis or something similar...just a thought
N.J. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2009
My sister gave a present to a friend of a friend for their wedding. It was a silver holder for their marriage certificate and she had their names and wedding date engraved on it. It was a nice gift for someone she didn't really know.
M.G. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2009
You could go with matching Cubs sweatshirts - or just pick your favorite team. When I was in Ireland this summer many people asked me about Obama and he seemed very popular there. So maybe along with the sports gear do some Obama presidential memorabilia. Coffee (tea!) mugs with Inaugural emblems etc...Or just do a whole Obama theme. Now, if that doesn't jive with your politics I guess just stick with sports. Have a great time at the wedding. You know, don't you, that these weddings can be a bit of a marathon occasion, right? And take that warm lined rain coat.
A. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2009
Sounds fun to go to a wedding in Ireland...hope you have a great time.
So here is a suggestion...what about making up a gift basket of things from the area...Frango Mints...always popular, a nice book about Chicago...showing lots of pictures. Maybe a Christmas ornament from Chicagoland. Magnets are always fun, stationary. The Old Navy shirts with the flags on them. Maybe some wine from a local winery. I don't know how some of that stuff might travel...I think they are happy you will be attending. Hope this helps you out.
B.A. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2009
I would not do anything that cuts. It is bad luck or least thought to be by some. Some believe it is a way of saying you do not support the union and it should be cut. So I would give them the money as they have a life that is established together and paying for a wedding is cumbersome. I don't know their financial status but while you always want to give a personal gift the cash is usually appreciated more.
E.P. answers from Chicago on February 22, 2009
Steak knives wouldn't be silly but..... "knives in your luggage" and traveling overseas? I don't know how comfortable I would be with that. Good knives are Henkel's (German) and Global (Japan).
If you want to do something culinary - a nice cookbook from an American Chef and maybe some kitchen tools.
Maybe even some kind of bedding, linens, towels, tablecloths. I like the thought of wanting to give something "American" but I would probably find out a little more about their color schemes, decorating taste and inquire about something that they would really desire, especially since you would be hauling it from the states.
A.M. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2009
I am Irish living here in Chi. Some irish are superstitious and say the "knives cut friendships." This tends to be more prevalent in my mother's generation. Another option would be a book on pizza especially chicago pizza, with pizza implements - I know a pizza stone is a little heavy to be carting off to Ireland but if you are there for a while before, you could buy one there if you will be in Dublin or Cork. Other nice American gifts are an Amish quilt or wall hanging. food products are tricky as Ireland is an agricultural hub and they are very fussy about what they will let in at the airport. good luck and have a great time.
K.B. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2009
We have cousins in various parts of the world, too, so I know the problem! Why not pick up a few good American regional cookbooks -- southern, Cajun, barbecue, Tex-Mex, New England, etc. -- that show off the great diversity of the U.S.? They'd be easy to pack, won't break, and won't give you problems with airport security! You might also want to add a set of US measuring cups and spoons since ours are a bit smaller than the standard in the UK and Ireland and could affect the results. Another favorite we take to our Dutch cousins is a Chicago pizza set, complete with baking stone, deep dish, cutter and recipes (plus measuring cups and spoons.)
Do post what you finally decided on!
E.B. answers from Chicago on February 23, 2009
Don't try to bring steak knives on the air plane.
I loved getting crystal pieces for my wedding...and I even got to keep them in the divorce! LOL!