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Remember Grooms When Selecting Gifts
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- To let the groom know he is more than a well-dressed escort at his bride's wedding, give him nontraditional wedding gifts that let him share the engagement spotlight.
The bride's schedule in the weeks before the wedding tends to be a hectic rush from one shower to the next -- most of which are for women only. While the groom also will benefit from the generosity of these friends and family, he may enjoy some gifts clearly selected with him in mind.
"Items like tools are needed by the woman of the house as well as the man, but men tend to enjoy receiving them more," said Frances Graham, housing specialist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service.
Graham suggested assembling a tool box with basic items such as a hammer, various screwdrivers, pliers, assorted nails and screws, measuring tape, duct tape and electrical tape.
"No jobs are universally male or female. Usually, each person has their own specialty -- like cooking, repairing, cleaning or assembling," Graham said.
Some activities frequently are shared. For example, gifts for grilling food outside may be enjoyed mutually.
Still, society lumps -- or dumps -- some jobs on each sex.
"Since men are often encouraged to take out the garbage, an unusual gift for the groom could be a trash can, complete with a rake, broom and shovel," Graham said. "Add yard and garden tools and work gloves for people who may have opportunities for outside activities."
David Nagel, Extension horticulture specialist, suggested other outdoor items such as pruning shears/saws, small shovels and spades, sprayers, knee pads, ladders or flashlights.
"When a person has a yard to maintain, jobs can be fun or overwhelming," Nagel said. "Having the right equipment can make a big difference."
Books with instructions for gardening, landscaping or household "fix-it" jobs may be appreciated in the years to come.
For those who like electronic gadgets, consider giving a universal remote control or a video cassette rewinder. Household "power tools" may include electric knives, can openers, vacuum cleaners or electric skillets.
"Even though they aren't traditional wedding gifts, no home should be without a smoke detector or a carbon monoxide detector," Graham said.
Nontraditional gifts for the bride may include hunting or fishing equipment that will enable her to enjoy some of her husband's hobbies.
"Women often enjoy crossing society's stereotypes and taking part in car maintenance, home repairs and outside jobs," Graham said.