A friend of my family married a soon-to-be Marine last weekend, and I am at a loss as to what to give as a wedding gift. Yes, we MilSpouses appreciate the same sort of gifts civilians do (gift cards anyone?), but I want do something special for her, and I need your help.
She was in the classic fiance-of-a-servicemember situation. They moved their wedding date around several times, trying to decide if it was better to get married (in Boise) before he went to the Marine's basic course (on the other side of the country), or after, before he went to his officer candidate program, or after, before they moved all of her stuff out there, or after ... I know you know the drill.
While her mother was a MilSpouse for many years, I don't think she knows anyone but Your's Truly who has experienced the military homefront during the current conflicts (and our predecessors do tell us that, yes, it's different now). I feel a lot of pressure to give her the best advice I can. That advice, of course, depends on the day. Sometimes I'm in a "run for your life!" sort of place, while the rest of the time I tell her that the military community is one of best things that ever happened to me.
But what gear do you need to survive? As a fellow spouse I want to give them a military appropriate wedding gift. I would love to give them something practical -- thought no heart-swelling-patriotism-cheesy, and, obviously, not easily broken by a move.
What items have you found necessary to the Military lifestyle that you could've been given as a wedding gift, if only you'd know to register for them?
Edit: An example that comes to mind is of a set of dessert service dishes (several big platters, a cake serving set, etc.) that I bought right before I had to host my first spouse coffee club event. I didn't register for that stuff because I didn't think I'd ever use it. But because of the military I did!