The other day I dropped off 217 pounds of stuff — clothes, shoes, bags, rugs, coats, towels, etc. — to the Open Door Mission.

It felt good.

In my effort to spend less on stuff and more on experiences and trips, I’m in full-fledged spring cleaning mode. I’m tackling closets, drawers and storage rooms. And while I’m sure I’ll still be working on it next spring, it feels good to accomplish something now.

Next I’m tackling our kitchen and pantry, and I’ve realized there are so many things we got for wedding gifts that we never use. Oh, how I wish I could go back 11 years ago and register again, or return items that I knew we wouldn’t use.

Instead, I’m either selling or donating mass quantities of small appliances and rubber spatulas — who needs 10 rubber spatulas? It's is great; just 11 years too late.

So if I could go back in time, here are the things I would tell myself not to register for at my wedding.

1. Limited use appliances. I do not have room for a panini press or a fajita maker. Anyone can easily use a griddle to make either of those items instead of taking up two full shelves in the pantry.

2. China. Our everyday dishes are actually bone china and plain white. They're perfectly fine for any and all occasion. To tell you the truth though, when we entertain, we often use paper plates. Who has time or desire to hand wash 50 dishes after entertaining? Not me. I would recommend registering for a nicer set of everyday dishes and ditching the china unless you're absolutely sure you’ll use it more than once a year (or decade).

3. Dry clean-only placemats. If it can't be wiped, I don’t want it. Pre-kids, I thought I’d use trendy and beautiful placemats to protect my table when we had kids over. That is the worst idea ever. Instead, I’ve become obsessed with cork back placemats that can be wiped and that are durable. As a bonus, they look great, too.

4. Nonstick cookware. We splurged on a very high-end set of nonstick cookware and while I love how it cooks, every single piece has had to get replaced because the coating has chipped. I expected cookware to last a lifetime, and if I could go back, I would do cast iron, stainless steel or stratanium.

5. Crockpot. I know, I’m crazy. But with the invention of the multi-pot, you don’t need both. I have three crockpots and a multi-pot in my pantry for no good reason. Save the space and go for the multipot from the start.

How about you? What would you add or subtract from your registry? I definitely think there is something to be said for experience registries instead of traditional ones. In my opinion, less can definitely be more!


Jaime Wyant is a 33-year-old Omaha native, wife to Bret and mother to Marin and Liam. She writes weekly for Read more from Jaime here.

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