My husband is not known for his gift giving skills, which over the years has been a thorn in the side of our marriage, mostly because I'm a total present person and he could really care less.
And really, it's not that I like stuff, but rather, to me, a gift says "thank you" and shows that you care -- that you've spent time thinking about them and wanting to do something that makes them happy. The gifts my husband gets me usually say something more like "Oh crap, I forgot to get her something oh maybe she'd like this ugly jacket!"
But this year instead of being disappointed with what's under the tree, or in recent years, the "nothing" under the tree (thanks to his gift-giving anxiety), I did something different. And guess what? It worked.
If you were a little (or a lot) bummed about what you found under your tree this year, here's how to ensure you'll get what you want when the next gift-giving holiday comes around.
As much as I would love for him to pop some gorgeous necklace or fabulous handbag under the tree, or heck, even a semi-fabulous handbag, I know that this will never happen. Plus, I tend to purchase all those things for myself when I need, er, want them anyway, so there's really not something I'm pining for that I want him to get me.
He thinks I'm tough to shop for. I think I'm easy. Besides I publish a shopping website with a holiday gift guide for goodness sakes. How hard is it really?
So this year, instead of wishing for something awesome, knowing I wasn't going to get something awesome, then being pissed off that I didn't get something awesome, I just told him exactly what bothered me about this whole gift giving nonsense between us.
Being honest. And open. What a concept!
And then I told him what I really wanted, which was a nice pair of sunglasses that I preferred to choose given our differing tastes, and for him to go shopping with the kids and let them pick something out for me, mostly so that they come to learn that the holidays are about being thankful, like for those people that do everything for them on a daily basis LIKE THEIR PARENTS.
I didn't care if it was an ugly sweater or a new pan and spatula (which is what I got this year - and nice ones too). I just wanted my kids to participate in the process.
This year, he could only seem to muster the effort to take one kid shopping, which was a little eye-roll worthy but, well, whatever. That's how it goes.
And as much as the whole last minute gift thing sort of drives me batty because there's nothing like going out to the mall on the day before Christmas that says "I've had a few weeks, even months to think about a gift for you but you're not important enough so I left it until the day before," I just let it go.
Because it really has nothing to do with me. And how much he cares. It's just how he works. It's who he is. And I can either let it bug me or disappoint me every freaking year or I can just make an omelet on my new pan with my new wooden spatula while wearing the sunglasses he got me just to have something wrapped under the tree which actually happen to be pretty cool, and enjoy myself.
I chose the latter. And damn I'm glad I did.
What did you get from your partner/spouse for the holidays?
Photo via CS_McMahon/Flickr