25 Terrible Holiday Gifts, From the Hilariously Strange to the Downright Rude

Say What!? 46

worst holiday giftsThe strangest holiday gift I have ever received was something my father sent me when I was in middle school. We hadn't seen each other since I was very young, and he'd apparently had my former age in mind when he picked out my present: a jigsaw puzzle, the sort with about 10 total pieces that's meant for preschoolers. Its art featured a baby duckling with the cheery accompanying text, "HAVE A DUCKY DAY."

I know it's gauche to complain about an object given out of generosity (usually) without the expectation of payment (most of the time), but the truth is, sometimes a present is just so weird/inappropriate/just-plain-WTF, you can't quite believe it. With the holidays right around the corner, I thought it was the perfect time to ask folks to share their most inexplicable gifts throughout the years.

Behold, 25 of the most oddball presents that have appeared under the family tree:

From an ex boyfriend: too small blue sundress to "match my eyes." My eyes are green. -- Daisy

A cookie jar filled with cookies, shipped from my [estranged] mother. It had melted into the shape of the bizarro jar during shipment: a giant blob of cookie. -- Melissa

My 88-year-old grandmother gave me a black lace thong that she bought at her HAIRDRESSER's from a lady selling them out of a bin-bag. -- MamaBean

From my husband's mother. Only gift she's EVER given either of us in the time we've been together, including wedding, his birthday, etc. It was a sort of gas station type gadget language translator, free gift from the casino, to both of us, from her AND her two adult kids. AFTER giving us Christmas lists for her and both kids, on which "cash" was a list item. -- TemerityJane

A re-gifted Lenox hurricane candle holder, minus the hurricane part. -- Katrina

A Spode Christmas tree sugar and creamer set. At $120. I was in college. -- Jessica

A giraffe travel toothbrush cover (yes) & a cloth (Vera Bradley) straight iron cover/carrier. Both from my mother. Same year. -- Claire

Fake key to my dream car from then-boyfriend. Went to the dealership to have it made and everything! -- Beth

A (now-ex) boyfriend’s parents gave me a workout video. -- Jen

Once my Gram gave all the adult guys in our family those CDs where your name gets inserted sporadically. They were football-themed. (Spoiler : They all won the big game!!) -- Sara

My in-laws gave me a collection of antique Alpine goat and sheep bells. -- Amy

In my eighth year of infertility, my husband's grandma gave me a "pregnancy fairy" to hang over my bed. And some tips on how to "do it." -- Tessa

My step-grandmother used to give her biological grandchildren money or gift cards every year, and me stuff from the dollar store with the tags on them. Like packages of pencils and holiday-themed tumblers and stuff. -- Tara

My grandmother always got us PJs for xmas ... usually all the grandkids got matching ones. The year I was 12, my sister was 19, and my cousin was 6, we all got horrible, pink, ruffly Holly Hobbie nightgowns. My sister & I got XL, which were clearly from the little girls' section because they were sized for an 8-year-old. There was also the year my parents, failing at any ideas for my husband, got him four Costco-sized jars of Jif. -- Kate

Google "shampoo cap." That's what my grandma gave me last Xmas. I'm 37 and not bedridden, FYI. -- Peep

Once an aunt gave me a cracked ceramic angel night light from TJ Maxx. I was in high school and was not afraid of the dark. -- Meredith

I got a bag of spice from my mother-in-law. Not fancy spices either. A gas station bag of cayenne pepper essentially. -- Leah

My aunt once gave me a book entitled, "How to Save Your Marriage." My other aunt gave me a Weight Watchers scale. -- Plain Jane

Last year my MIL got my husband (HER SON) salsa, crackers, and a box of Fiddle Faddle for Christmas. -- Lisa

My MIL gave me a gift that was clearly actually for my husband (think tools). Her way of giving me nothing. -- Brenna


My SIL gave me a Jar Jar Binks action figure and a Darth Maul softside lunchbox. When I was 25 years old. -- Fonticulus

One year my grandma gave my siblings & I each $20 except my sister who got a children's book on counting blessings. She was 15. -- Elsha

My grandmother gave me a tiny bow to tie to my "fluffy" to "surprise my husband" for Christmas. -- Maria

A riding saddle. No, I don't have a horse. -- Susan

What's the weirdest/worst gift you've ever received?

Image via MediSimpleShoppe

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adamat34 adamat34

My parents bought me an ice tea pot once.....i was 11/12 at the time.....everyone else got nice gifts...I was usally left out.

nonmember avatar Erica

My now ex mil got me a huge can of slimfast for xmas one year. I had just had a baby 3 months before. Took a lot of nerve, especially considering she weighed 300+ lbs and was exactly 5 feet tall.

youth... youthfulsoul

I got a recycled, used cheese grater from my aunt.

Shandi80 Shandi80

I hate that people expect gifts at Christmas. I have an idea, let's keep the pretty lights and trees and do away with gift giving. 

Lokis... LokisMama

Fuzzy handcuffs. From my sister.  

bookl... booklover74

My MOTHER once made me a detailed tree topper angel for Christmas. She made them for a few others as well and said they were made to match our facial details.She even told me, after I opened it, how much detaail she put into the features on mine.

Mine was chocolate brown........I am white (even with a heavy tan I caan't get this shae of chocolate)????????? 

By the way I never expect gifts, am always gracious and say thank you. Sometimes I just have to think to myself WTF because they really do get bizzare.

nonmember avatar Mermaid

Three empty Tiffany boxes. Oh, and one year I got a purple toilet brush.

nonmember avatar April

My MIL gave me a snack sized bag of potato chips for one christmas

nonmember avatar Tanya

My father and step-mother once gave me an ashtray, and it had ashes in it. And by the way I don't smoke.

nonmember avatar Joanne

An elderly, close friend of my husband's family, gave me an empty Cool Whip tub one year. Because it's so handy! You can put leftovers and things like that, in it.

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