Gift Usage

Posted By Jesse
Gift-giving is not one of my biggest strengths. Lisa was an amazing gift-giver but I think it’s because it gave her an excuse for more shopping. But even beyond picking things out, she had that sort of mind that was always thinking about the next birthday or Christmas coming up. Typically by the time Christmas shopping season came around, she was already done, having kept a watchful eye out for presents while on trips and vacations. I’m more of the “how late are you open on Christmas Eve?” kind of guy.
The other thing Lisa and Danny are both good at is establishing “themes” for birthdays and Christmas for the kids: they let you know what the big thing is going to be and it helps you pick a relevant accessory. Plus, if the kid is already excited about said big ticket item, they’re that much more likely to be excited about every related gift. It’s a win-win. When DJ got her cell phone, I got her a case. When Michelle got a big art easel, I gave her cool crayons and other supplies.

the picture belies the excitement of first piercing

This year one of Stephanie’s Christmas themes was EARRINGS! She got her ears pierced just before Christmas and must have gotten 30 pair of them in December to get her collection started. I joined in the theme: I got her an earring stand and a little wooden box with a design on it to hold loose ones. I was pleased with the purchase.

But not as pleased as I was a few weeks later when I first noticed that she actually uses them! Typically I’m happy if my gift gets picked up after the wrapping comes off; seeing it put to practical use is a whole new ball game.
Being thoughtful and sweet is something Stephanie comes by naturally, but I have learned that putting presents to use is a specific skill that she has inherited from Danny’s mother. From what I have been told she has an extra gene that allows her to mentally label every sweater or serving tray or electronic device that she ever received as a present with the name of the giver. Then, if that person is visiting, she will being wearing or using the gift. Not only that, she does it naturally, never seeming like she’s planned it this way, so it really does seems as if you have always given her the perfect gift.
Michelle has been learning in cotillion about the proper way to receive a compliment. Stephanie and her grandmother could teach classes on the best way to receive a gift, a way that makes the giver feel good. It’s a gift they have.
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  1. Faye Humphrey

     /  May 13, 2011

    That’s Jean!

  2. And a bonus that I just noticed in the picture–Lisa’s Deb stool! Bet there are a few readers who will appreciate that….

  3. The truth is, when your kids give you a gift, each time you use it you feel loved, and when you see the smile on the givers face as you use it, it brings pleasure to you both again. In reality it truly is a gift that keeps on giving.

  4. Hopie

     /  May 13, 2011

    You have captured LP perfectly — she is the sweetest, most GRACIOUS 10-year old I’ve ever met!

  5. April Poole

     /  May 14, 2011

    Not only is her grandmother the most gracious gift receiver in this world, she is a thoughtful giver of gifts. Just knowing her is the greatest of gifts. Her granddaughter inherited a gene that will make her life wonderful.

  6. It’s true that Lucy is one of the sweetest, most thoughtful little girls in the world. She’s a special little girl as each of them are in their own way. Aside from that, what’s really going on here is that Hayes is wanting to butter me up so that we will continue to cook and leave food so that he doesn’t have to worry about it. You see, we have kind of adopted Jessie this year much like his Mom, Nana, has adopted our Danny. He wants to be sure that he stays on our good side. BUT… Nana and I have found that these two guys need a whole lot of heavy duty parenting and who better to do that but us “experienced” moms? We’re up for the job, right, Nana?

  7. Aunt Susan

     /  May 15, 2011

    Oh Jesse, you are so insightful. and Stephanie is the sweetest kid on the planet. She did not get that from you! bet she got it from her Dad, but not her mom’s dad!


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