Asking for Gifts?

How do you ask for gifts? DO you ask for gifts? I’m not talking about wedding gifts, or baby gifts – events that traditionally are accompanied by a registry. Or even Christmas Gifts, where some families ask for a “wish list”.  I’m talking about the ‘minor’ gift-giving days, like Valentine’s Day, or Mother’s/Father’s Day.

Let’s discuss Mother’s Day. Every year, I do something nice and long-distance for my mom, but I also know that there are gift plans in the works for me. The thing is, every year, it’s pretty much the same thing – some sort of planted thing.  Now, please understand, I’m not ungrateful. I enjoy getting gifts, I am gracious when I receive them, etc., etc.

But I’m not a gardener. I have a garden, yes. But mostly it’s under duress that I have one. I enjoy being able to go out now and then and grab a fresh tomato for dinner, but I don’t like having to cultivate, weed, plant, weed, constantly water, weed, chase off pests, weed, fight the overwhelming vines, weed, wonder what to do with this massive bumper crop of cucumbers that are going to rot on the vine, weed…. Well, you get the drift.

The thing is, my husband loves the idea of having a garden. Every year, he starts around December, thinking about what is going into the garden, and by this time in spring, he’s nearly unbearable with his excitement of having a garden. But I’m the one who does all the work.

So when I know that for Mother’s Day, I’m going to end up with even MORE plants that I’m going to have to take care of, well, it doesn’t excite me. In fact, I dread it.

What am I supposed to do with this? I LOVE that they get their heads together and ask me to drop them off at the local store with orders to “stay in the car and close your eyes when we call and tell you we’re coming out.” They know I love a good surprise, and I’m happy to indulge in any way that I can. I don’t peek, and I go out of my way to stay out of THEIR way when we’re dealing with gift-giving.

But I just don’t want another flat of flowers!!!  But I also don’t want to tell them, because they’re so excited about it. I know it would likely hurt their feelings, or make me look ungrateful. Or both. And I also don’t know how I’d answer if someone said, “well, what DO you want?”  Ok, yes, I do know how I’d answer, but I already tried asking for a night away at the local hotel, but they didn’t go for it.

Maybe this is a ‘woman’ thing? I can’t ever remember a guy agonizing over receiving a gift…

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16 Responses to Asking for Gifts?

  1. mssc54 says:

    It took a while but I’ve finally gotten my Mrs and the kids trained. They now understand that the idea of giving a gift is for the benefit of the recepiant and not that the giver feel good about giving.

    I like to go to the movies. I get gift cards to my favorite theater.

    Regarding your husband and gardening. Its completely understandable as to why he loves the “imagination” of gardening. Its equally understandable that you are “worn out” at doing all the stuff you don’t enjoy doing. That’s the epitome of “for better or worse.”

  2. Sue says:

    I think once you tell them to go with something other than flowers , they’re going to wonder what took you so long to say you’d rather not have them! I would personally want to know sooner rather than later if something I liked giving someone wasn’t exactly what they had in mind. I want you to love your gift, not dread it!

  3. SKL says:

    LOL, I thought this was Joy writing at first, and I thought, “man, she’s brave!” Ha ha!

    When I really want to make sure I get A instead of B, I mention it before they start thinking about B, and I don’t even talk about B. “If you were planning on getting me something for my birthday and you are OK with the $__ price range, I would not mind getting some ____.” It sounds better than, “hey, instead of getting me flowers again . . . .”

    I don’t really like getting gifts. But if I know I’m gonna get one anyway, it might as well be something I will actually use, right? People who want to buy you a gift will want it to be something you really like. They will feel better knowing in advance that you’ll like it. (You could still play along with Josh on a small surprise gift.)

  4. SKL says:

    Oh, and I’m not sure this is a “woman” thing. My dad is just as difficult as I am. We have to get him something for Christmas, birthday, and Father’s Day every year, and at some point there is nothing the man doesn’t already have. But we ask him what he would like, and he says “I don’t want / need anything.” And he can’t read books because of his dyslexia / eye problems, while sportsman gear is out because everything hurts. So every year he gets some sort of tea / tea accessories, gift cards, tools, and framed photos / photogifts of the grandkids. I wonder where his secret stash of “I really didn’t want that” stuff is.

    • Laura says:

      audio books? I have a friend who just loves She can buy full books and download them to her iPod/MP3 player. If you want to do that, and are concerned about the buttons/manipulation on a smaller iPod or other player, there is something called a Victor Reader Stream. It’s very expensive ($500), but it’s got bigger buttons and simplified use for those with vision issues. And is compatible with a bunch of different formats.

      • SKL says:

        My mom was on an audiobook kick a while back, so they have hundreds of them. I would not dare buy one new, because every time I ever do, I’m told “I just bought that book for 29 cents on ebay.”

  5. Joy says:

    I’m really very lucky. But on the other hand, I love flowers of all kinds and for Mother’s Day I welcome me some nice potted flowers. I also LOVE junk so I really think I’m pretty easy to buy for. I do have a wish list and when I’m asked, I’ll usually say the things I’ve been wanting but nobody really asks me too much. They just seem to know what I like without my saying.

    I can full imagine my horror though if I got flowers and didn’t like them. I honestly can’t even imagine getting my mom flowers. She doesn’t like them. Do you just act all “oh I love them, thank you so much” or how do you handle that because I can really tell this is bothering you or you wouldn’t have written about it like this. OR, do you like flowers but you just don’t want anymore? I wouldn’t want a “flat” of them but I love them potted and ready to hang because then all you need to do is water them. OR, do you just want other things?

    You need to do some splaing Lucy!! TELL US WHAT YOU WANT FOR THESE SMALL HOLIDAYS and we’ll try and think of things you can maybe say.

  6. Jenny says:

    I would just come up with a list of different things that you want and say lets do something different this year. I don’t think you would hurt anyones feelings by coming up with a list other than flowers!

    I on the otherhand, love getting flowers!

  7. Phyllis says:

    For myself, I love potted flowers. A few yrs ago my granddaughters (and 1 husband) planted me a garden that I always wanted in a small front section of the yard. Now for gifts I ask that they weed it please, or just give me a hand with it.

    I know buying gifts for me is a little hard, because our tastes in clothes is so wildly different and I need to try on everything cause my body is just plain weird in shape so sizes vary according to the item. I’ll usually just give a simple short list of things I need, like slippers, (inexpensive and always handy to have) or some other small thing that I’ve thought of. That usually works best for me.

  8. Nikki says:

    If there is a particular thing I want, and I know it’s doable, I’ll just ask for it! Sometimes I get it, sometimes i don’t.

    Jason’s Great Aunt was notorious for finding something you like and REALLY sticking to it! We had so many glue guns and art kits we could open our own art supply store. But we never said anything, it brought her too much joy and we dealt with it. BUT I think with your husband you earned that right when you got married to voice your true opinion! 🙂 In a nice way of course. Instead of saying, I don’t want flowers, suggest something new. Say you were thinking about all the little (or big) things you’d like, so here’s the list if your interested! Good luck!

  9. SKL says:

    I have to say that I am not a fan of flowers either. But if I did get flowers, I would hope they were in a potted plant that was easy to care for. And that the giver would not be offended if I forgot to water them and they died.

    Now if someone wants to come over and actually plant those flowers in my yard, go for it!

    • SKL says:

      I should say I’m not a fan of flowers as a gift. I like flowers growing in the ground – especially wildflowers and perennials.

  10. kweenmama says:

    I usually start hinting about what I want a few weeks before and usually the hint is understood. Even just saying, “You know what would be really nice for Mother’s Day this year? A __________!”

  11. rastelly says:

    A close friend of the family is really into
    superhero’s and collectibles. He got into
    Yu-gi- oh so I got him some of the origional
    manga – I often olny give gifts if I know there
    is something in particular the person has been
    wanting. Otherwise I don’t like to wast money
    and clutter up the personal space of people I
    love, with useless brick – a brack they will feel
    obligated to keep. The ironey is – he took the
    gift to mean that I shared his interest and now
    I have three boxes of Yu-gi-oh cards under
    my bed – (I’m more of a magic fan.) though
    if they appriciate I’ll totolly forgive him.

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