I was listening to a radio show recently in which I heard a husband confess his horrible gift-giving abilities. The others on the show asked if he took notes on his phone when his wife mentioned something she liked or if he asked her good girl friends. “Yes,” he replied “but somehow I just can’t seem to get it right.” Then he told a story of buying her jewelry from her favorite jeweler. As I listened I thought, “he’s going to get it right this time. I can tell from the way he’s telling it.” Well, he got it halfway right. His wife loved the earrings. She loved them so much that she… already owned two of the three pairs. She was currently wearing one pair and had worn the other pair the day before. He simply hadn’t noticed.
Friends, it’s difficult to pay attention to all the details if you aren’t detail-oriented. So let’s talk about a few ways that you can buy a gift that won’t end up in the donate pile.
For the Giver
1. Pay attention and do your best.
2. Ask for ideas from a friend or family member of the person you are buying for.
3. Just because someone says they like candles doesn’t mean they only want candles.
4. When you give a gift, it is the recipients’ to do with as they please.
While we find ourselves as givers sometimes we will also find ourselves as the recipient as well. I remember as a kid my brother and and I would pour over the store catalogs and write down what we wanted for Christmas. We wrote out Christmas lists with paper and pencil and our own two hands. Then we gave those lists to our parents with dreams of getting exactly what we asked for. We didn’t always get just what we asked for. Sometimes we got something better than what we asked for or something we didn’t even know to ask for but really liked. And then sometimes we would get a dud. Here are a few tips for us as recipients of gifts whether the giver got the best gift ever or fell short of our expectations.
For the Recipient
1. Be clear with what you want and be open to others interpreting that however they see fit.
2. Have grace and remember that the giver has thought of you and assume the best of their intentions.
3. Once you receive a gift, it is yours to do with as you please while keeping a gracious attitude.
What other ideas do you have for gift givers and recipients?