First Year Gifts

For our First Anniversary, Jake and I decided to go with traditional paper gifts, but limiting to a small dollar amount of $25 since we took such an incredible excursion to Maine for the weekend.  I must say that we both managed to put together thoughtful, expressive gifts to each other that meant something and represented us very well!

I decided to make a few gifts for Jake and first put together a simple shadow box of things from our Honeymoon in Antigua.


We had saved some Eastern Caribbean dollars, our boarding passes as well as a map and Jake’s drivers license he was issued for one day to drive around the island.  We still need to add in a picture from the honeymoon but since our printer is on the fritz, I left that part out and we can choose one and add it together.

I also decided to mimic a great idea I found on Etsy for our wedding vows.  That version was out of our $25 budget, so I decided I could make our own with a little twist to it.


I choose a double matted frame with a 5×5 opening and formatted our vows to print and fit within that space.  Then I created little stencils and cut out our wedding date in some of our blue card stock we had left from a few projects and glued them to the lower left corner.


With the addition of our little lovebirds in the middle, it came out pretty simple and sweet and Jake loved it!  It’ll be a nice addition to a gallery frame wall we have planned for our staircase.

Jake’s gifts to me were really creative as well and I’m still pretty darn impressed with that man of mine.  First, he found a vintage brochure from The Emerson Inn by the Sea, where we were married and boy-oh-boy is it neat!


The inner pages don’t even have any images – it’s all just sketches and text about the Inn and things to do!  One page even talks about in-room telephones with a 24-hour switchboard!

Anniversary_BrochureCollageWe have no idea what year exactly the brochure is from other than an era when switchboards were still in use, but it is a really neat collection piece and I love it.  I see another shadow box in our future perhaps, or even just to frame it as it is so we can preserve it!

Lastly, my husband wowed me again with his thoughtfulness by choosing the most gorgeous map of the USA that we can use to create a pin-board map of our travels together.


It’s something I wanted to create for us and the map he chose is just stunning with gorgeous colors and a really high quality paper.  We’ll have to build a nice frame for it and find a matching world map as our adventures continue!

Not to be outdone was a gorgeous and amazingly creative gift we received from my twin sister.

Anniversary_SillohetteCan you believe she made that?  She took one of our wedding photographs and gave us something truly unique and one of a kind that we can hang in our home!  We just love it – it’s gorgeous (and made of paper!)!

Needless to say, we have so many blessings to be thankful for and truly had a wonderful first anniversary and first year married together!  Thank you all for the kind thoughts and wishes on our Anniversary, as well!  We love you!

What did you do for a special anniversary?  Do you have a tradition or follow the traditional gifts ideas for each other?

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1 Comment

  1. Michelle & Jake,
    Wow, what truly impressive ways to preserve and display your memories and hopes for the future! Please keep sharing them with us – and each other, they are an inspiration!

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