We were married over 5 years ago, but we’ve held onto all of the cards we received as gifts, and each year we find a new surprise.
After our wedding, while our two families were still in town together (they live 1.5 hours apart), we opened our gifts and cataloged everything for when we sent out thank you cards. We left for our honeymoon the next day, so it was a big rush to gather everything up, get back to Maryland, unload, grab our luggage and get to the airport for our flight to Ireland.
Well, apparently we didn’t grab all the cash/checks/gift cards from the cards and we continue to find money each time we go through the cards (or find more cards placed elsewhere). For instance, last year we found a $50 Target gift card that still had all its value. The year before we found a $25 check (that we didn’t cash since we didn’t want to pay fees in case it bounced).
Well, this week we found a card with a $100 check from one of my college friends. Five and a half years ago, Stacie didn’t have a job, and I was making less than half of my current salary. We had probably $80,000 in debt, so any money we could find helped tremendously. In addition, the friend who gave us the gift couldn’t be called rich by any means, so $100 was a big gift from her.
While I haven’t maintained good contact with this friend over the years, I did feel required to tell her we found the check, in case she wondered why we never cashed it.
I was tempted to ask whether the account was still open, but then I think that’s a pretty improper question. And I’m not going to try to cash it because of 1) potential bounced check fees and 2) I remember the Seinfeld episode where he cashed all of is grandma’s birthday gifts and he put her in the poor house. I think my friend has long forgotten the check and isn’t tracking it anymore, so I wouldn’t want her to miss a payment on something because I wanted the money.
So the lesson to all of you who are married or are planning it is to check ALL your cards for gifts, take them out and keep them ALL together. Oh, and deposit the money ASAP!