Friday, December 10, 2010

Unusual Christmas Gifts

My husband is not the easiest person to buy for. Admittedly, it would be easier if I had any kind of a decent memory. All year long he tells me, "If you are looking for a gift for me for my birthday/Father's day/Christmas, get me THIS." I look at him eagerly and say, "OKAY!" then promptly forget. I don't mean to, but that bit of information just gets pushed off the edge of my brain capacity to make room for other important factoids, like my kids' school's fax number or an amusing anecdote about President Obama.

Still, some people just make present-buying a dreaded experience. Many years, after Christmas is over, I hear him say, "I wish they hadn't spent money on a gift and just given it to me instead." While my gut reaction is to say that it's ungrateful, I really think it's more that he just knows what he wants. I am sure that he recognizes how some people buy gifts for him just for the sake of buying a gift, and don't really stop to think about whether he'll like it or not. I know he'd rather have people save their money instead of spend it on a gift that will go completely unused, but if people are set on getting him a gift, he knows what he could buy for himself that would be perfect.

So one year I got creative - or maybe completely uncreative, depending on how you look at it. For Christmas, I got my husband.... a box of money. I think it was $150 or something like that. He opened it and looked at me, puzzled. I told him, "This way you don't have to return anything. You can get EXACTLY what you want." I didn't mean it to be a left-handed compliment, but he might have taken it that way. I really meant to give him SOMETHING HE WANTED.

The following year, I did exactly that. It was December 24th and he'd be preaching at Church that evening and the following morning. Add to it all the family festivities and I knew he'd be busy and tired. So, on Christmas Eve Morning, I let him sleep as long as his body would allow. I never peeked in on him or disturbed him, and I made the kids be as quiet as mice. I let them watch TV or play outside or in the basement. He finally stumbled out of our room at quarter till 1:00 in the afternoon. He couldn't believe how late it was. But I thought, how long had it been since he'd really slept in like a bachelor? I usually hounded him to get up and help me with the kids, or even if I'd had morning duty I'd harass him out of bed by 10am, insisting that getting up any later was just wasting the day. But that year, a day of sleeping late was my Christmas present to him. He definitely was surprised and I think he loved it as much as he could love anything that could have come in a box.

So, what's the most creative or unusual Christmas Gift you've ever given?

Texan Mama


Prairie Mother said...

My husband is tough too. One year I had a wooden rocking chair refinished that once belonged to his grandfather. Another year I wrote down 100 wonderful things about him and stuffed it in his stocking.

On the flip side he bought me a composter for our anniversary this year!

Lanita said...

For my husband's birthday last year, I got him a 5' wooden cigar indian. He had always wanted one, but that isn't something he would buy for him self. My daughters and I kept it a secret, and we hid the mummy shaped package that was delivered by UPS, and on the day of his birthday...he was blown away.

commonplacelife said...

Money is after all the very worst possible just ends up going for milk and gas and toilet paper.

Crystal said...

That truly is a good one. But the hubby and I don't ususally exchange gifts, by the time the kids and relatives and have-to gifts are purchased, the money is usually gone. But I really like that Idea! Hope all is going well for you and your crew. Merry Christmas!

Gigi said...

My hubby is really hard to buy for too! Every once in a while I can knock his socks off - but usually I don't.

Mine drops hints throughout the year as well - but I also promptly forget and then when I ask what he wants - he says "Nothing." Aaaaaggggh! I'd much rather spend the money on something I know he wants then just guessing.

What a beautiful gift you gave him though - the gift of sleep! I'm sure he truly appreciated it.

Anna See said...

The gift of sleep? Perfect!

Annie said...

We must be unusual. We always had the kids make wish lists for Santa, and then they asked us to make one for them. We've stuck with the tradition, and there are always gifts that weren't on the list, but the list inspired a starting place.

So, something not on the list... I found an old book at a used book sale that was a published copy of a WWII journalist's personal diary of that time period. My husband really enjoys history, so it was a hit.

Ellen Stewart (aka Ellie/El/e) said...

Just found this now, and I'm laughing because my husband really wants a salad spinner for his birthday. So, that's what he's getting!