Saturday, December 18, 2021

Christmas Shopping

 Tim is a good person, but he's never really mastered the art of gift giving. It's not for lack of a teacher. Lord knows, I've tried. But despite all that, there's still those bright and shining moments when (Tada!) I open a gift bag (he also hates to wrap) and pull out my bright and shining new can opener. 

He's getting better. He knows how I love my earrings, and so he will buy a half dozen pairs of them and call it good. The same with candles. 

This year it began once again: 'What should I get you for Christmas?' 

This year, buoyed by the fact that he actually participated in decorating the tree, I tried again. "Tim, look at me." 

He looked.

"What are things that I like?" 

And he looked.

"We've been married for 24 years. Surely, you can think of things that I like."

He looked. Cleared his throat. "Sweaters?"

"Yes! I do like sweaters. Big bulky ones, no turtle necks or cowl necks..." 

"What are those?" he asked in a confused sort of way.

I sighed (inwardly). "Don't get me anything around my neck. I hate things around my neck. What else?"



"Scented lotions and soap?"


And he looked. 

"What about long flannel night gowns?" I asked him. 

He nodded.

"Warm socks." 

He nodded again. 

I said, "Now think of the things that I use," and I began to list of necessaries, providing him brand names. 

I said, "That's how you Christmas shop, Tim. You don't wander around stores looking for things that I might like. You pay attention to me and NOTICE. You have some ideas before you even walk in the store."

Tim took Friday off. He has vacation to burn off before the end of the year. He announced he was going Christmas shopping. Friday night, when I got home, he was a very happy man. He got his Christmas shopping all done. He was smiling little secret smiles all night long. At one point, he said, "Can I give you your main present now?" 

I looked at him shocked. "NO!" I said. 

He said, "It's so cool..." and smiled again. 

I said, "I know what you're up to, mister!!! You're trying to get out of wrapping." 


  1. Ha! Well, I have to admit, I am a bit like Tim when it comes to Christmas shopping. It's not really a talent I have. Fortunately Dave doesn't have it either, so we balance each other out! LOL

  2. I was getting my wrapping done and doing so well and I run out of paper and tape almost the same time. I am half done. I got the things I need now and will finish it today as our family exchange and dinner is tomorrow. I get needed things to wrap, add a card and add the money. My grandkids are in the twenties, military or college so money always is a big hit.

  3. Roles are reversed in my house. Last year I bought myself my own Christmas present and wrapped it just to have something to open Christmas morning.

  4. Aww! That's so sweet. And now that you've helped him, look how much pleasure he's taking in finding gifts for you. :) That's a good man you've got there!

  5. It took me more than a year to get over my husband giving me an instant pot and a garbage can for Christmas one year. That really hurt.

    This morning we went to a sale at an old church my sister has set up for craft vendors. I had invited him along and when I picked out two sets of alpaca insoles and a pair of alpaca mittens, I asked if he'd bought a gift for me yet and if not perhaps he'd like to pay for these? Indeed he would.

    When we got back to the house he asked if I wanted to wear the mittens right away. I said Nope. You should wrap 'em up so I have something to open Christmas morning.

    Is that weird? It's not that I really care about having these gifts on Christmas morning, considering I already know what they are. It's more about giving him the knowledge that having a gift to open on Christmas morning matters. One might think that because I always make sure he has an abundance to open, he'd figure that out. But no.

    And I don't want it to be something set unwrapped in the middle of the kitchen floor for me to stub my toe on in the dark, either, like the instant pot and garbage can were. Did I mention I considered divorcing him at the time for being such a nimrod? We aren't married so I didn't have to, but he got the idea and hasn't f'd up in quite that way since.

    He does find it helpful if I give him a wish list. But since there is nothing in this world I really need or want, that's hard to do. Nevertheless even a pair of earrings or a necklace are a thousand times better than buying something for the house and pretending it's for me. That just pissed me off.

    Ungrateful Kate

  6. Too funny. At least he listened:)

  7. Debby, I'm a lot like Tim too when it comes to shopping.

    Your post reminded me of one Christmas, we bought our daughter a bike, I stayed up late Christmas Eve assembling it, we placed it in the garage then wrapped up a card that directed her to the garage.

    She walked into the garage and exclaimed, " I didn't want this. Why did Santa give me a bike it wasn't on my list?"

  8. LOL. Kids are hilarious at Christmas, Jack. One of my Christmas memories is William eyeballing a large package under the tree. It did not have a label on it yet, because he was four and still sort of believing in Santa. He said, "Grandma? Is this present for me?" I said, "I don't know, William. Do you see your name on it?" He looked and try a he might, he did not see his name on the package. He scampered off and came back with a pen and said, "Grandma? Will you write my name on that present?"

    Kate, I can't really get mad at him. He had a hard childhood, and reversing things, he's thrilled to death when he gets some tool he wants. He just doesn't get why I was not over the moon about that can opener because, after all, I needed one. (The worst was when he bought me a set of used tupperware. (He had just discovered e-bay). Totally not kidding.) I'm not exactly shorted on gifts. We have kids and I have friends, and so it works out just fine.

    This year, I pushed just a bit harder than usual. He just left a few minutes ago to go out again. Of his own volition, he remembered something he wanted to get.

  9. I was a Tim for a long time and there is still much room for improvement for me as far as gift-giving to Susan. But I have come a long way (we can be taught)! I try to be tuned in all year long and will try to make a mental note when she mentions something she likes and from that, have something in mind when a gift-giving occasion comes around. At my age, I would do better to write it down because the mental notes don't always survive! Whatever. My biggest problem is in the area of gift-receiving. I'm terrible at it. Another discussion.

  10. Too funny! You guys are so cute! Actually I don't think Art and I have given each other Christmas gifts in decades. There are some years when we'll just splurge on something we want and call it our Christmas gift to each other. Gosh! I guess we're boring.

  11. You nailed the ending once again. Does nobody else appreciate your talent for this?

    For the past few years, at least, I have been nailing it. Beyond that, I can't remember precisely, but I think I do alright. I only have to buy one gift, which can stretch into two. Otherwise, my daughter fills Sue's stocking. Yes, we do stockings. We never did them when I was a kid, but we have always done them in my adult life. Not that it was my idea, but it is Sue's heritage, and it makes it so much fun. It is a great tradition and helps make Christmas morning last much longer as we go around the circle time and again.


I'm glad you're here!

Music to our Ears.

 Well, the concert was good fun. It was not nearly as loud as the last event we went to, which was a bit of a relief to my poor ears. Tim en...