Our Two Cents: Gift conundrum: big-screen TV vs. candlesticks

Dr. Sharon Ufberg and her three children offer advice about family, love and life. Send your questions to [email protected].

It is past time for my fiancee and I to make some decisions about our wedding registry. We need to choose what we both want and register, but honestly we are not in total agreement on this one. We decided to write in and ask for your advice about what is appropriate these days. She is definitely leaning toward the candlesticks and mezuzot, and I am lobbying heavily for a vacuum cleaner and big-screen TV. Looking for your input on this one!

A.R., Sacramento

How funny that you brought this up; I just recently watched a TV show dedicated to the essential items for a wedding gift registry. The top three were: three sets of sheets (one on the bed, one in the hamper and one in the closet), luggage (perfect for your honeymoon, right?) and a great vacuum cleaner. I also heard that you should always register for one or two fantasy items. So, it appears that you’re in luck — both your vacuum (essential) and television (fantasy) are on this latest list of appropriate gift registry items. Frankly, I think there’s room for a big-screen TV and candlesticks on your registry!

Sharon: I have to admit I am more of a traditionalist on this issue than one may expect. I think picking out a great set of dishes, flatware and some beautiful wineglasses is the perfect way to begin building a home together. Some of these great houseware essentials are items that people rarely splurge on but always love to have. Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get some special — even if impractical — goodies. Just make sure that both of you get to throw in some of your favorite items, so no one feels left out when the packages start to arrive at your doorstep.

Alexis: Having registered for my own wedding gifts recently, I remember the he-wants/she-wants divide. While I was busy zapping the bar codes of every decorative bowl in my color scheme, my husband was adding a Blu-ray DVD player and toolkit to our list. We’ve gotten great use out of the items he picked, and the house is homier thanks to my selections. Creating a wedding registry is a perfect time to practice compromise (you have a lifetime of this ahead, right?) and learn how to talk to each other about what you need and value. Perhaps if you offer to do the vacuuming, you’ll have that item in the bag.

Saul: No contest here, the TV should definitely be on your registry if that’s kosher to do in 2012. I am pretty confident this will be a decision that your girl will not regret, either. I am also in favor of a great set of cookware; doesn’t the perfect pan make the chef look like a pro?


Dr. Sharon Ufberg is a Napa-based radio host, journalist, consultant and integrative health practitioner. Her daughters live in San Francisco: Lawyer-turned-writer Alexis Sclamberg, 28 and married; and hair colorist Jessica Sclamberg, 26 and single. Sau Sclamberg, 24 and single, studies chiropractic in Los Angeles. Read more at http://r-2-cents.com.