My parents retired to beautiful sunny Florida a couple years ago, and last year was their first year ever not being in Massachusetts for Christmas. Last year my sister went down to FL mid-December because she is a nurse and worked right through the holidays, and I went down for a few days right after Christmas. My fiance’s family truly took me in last year for Christmas. His parents got me a stocking and stuffed it with candy, travel size toiletries, handwarmers, and chapstick. They got me some really nice gifts including a jewelry box decopaged with a picture of my dog, Mizpah, on it. They even got Mizpah a toy and a bone. The sadness I felt over not being with my family for Christmas morning was greatly offset by the warmth from my fiance’s family. I am so lucky to be marrying into this family.
Yesterday….my fiance asked me to come up with some gift ideas to pass along to his mother…..this is a gift guide often looked over….
I had a few criteria:
- Affordable, like under $40
- From a well known retailer- your own mom might go to any lengths to get you the perfect gift, your boyfriend/fiance’s mom? keep it simple, don’t send her to an Etsy shop that she’s never heard of.
- Hassle-free/free shipping- free and easy shipping is always a plus
- Commonality- something that she feels comfortable buying, not too intimate, something that she would buy for a friend in her life
OK, here’s what I came up with!
- A basic cotton cable knit sweater from LL Bean, on sale for $39.99. I had to toss my black crew neck sweater this year, so this would be an awesome replacement. These sweaters are a wardrobe staple and my fiance’s parents love LLBean too!
- A nice Kate Spade mug with the words “One Smart Cookie” on it from Macy’s, $15. Some of the other little sayings might be weird for her to buy, but I am a smart cookie! This is a mug I would feel comfortable drinking from in front of my students 😉
- Smartwool socks!!! I am a Smartwool sock addict, they are my favorite. I sent along these from REI because I know my fiance put some stuff from REI on his list….trying to make it easy on my future inlaws 🙂 The socks run ~$15, especially for the 2014 closeout ones! I live in the nice warm medium cushion socks all winter.
- Books!! Books are a great gift. I am asking for Not Without Peril by Nicholas Howe from Barnes & Noble for $15.21. I have read a borrowed copy from a friend but would like my own. It’s an amazing book filled with the history and mishaps in the Presidential Range in the White Mountains of NH.
- Timex Weekender watch in plaid from Kohls, $34.42. I wrote about the Timex Weekender here and I love the plaid pattern strap.
Its so nice when the important people in your life ask for gift ideas. It shows that while they know you, they are interested in what you want/need right now. They want to get you something you will like! Tis better to give than to receive for sure, but coming up with suitable gift ideas in the gifter’s price range can really make your family/close friends lives easier. I make different wish lists for my parents, my aunt & cousins, my sister, and for my future inlaws. It takes time, but really helps alleviate the mall wandering and shopping anxiety for the people you love most. Its the thought that counts of course, but its a great feeling to be done with your Christmas shopping and be confident that everything you got for your people will be loved.
What do you think? Share your comments!