27 November 2009

Most Memorable Gifts

Too often we give/receive gifts that are less than memorable. Clothing, magazine subscriptions, mis-directed knick-knacks/art, unnecessary appliances; it's the reason why retailers now automatically hand out gift receipts. It's also the reason why the gift card industry has boomed over the last few years. Gift card sales in 2007 were over $97 billion. The number is only expected to rise. I hate giving gift cards, I feel like I don't put any time or thought into it, there's no personal touch, nothing to say, "I care." I have to admit though, a gift card to a well-thought store or restaurant can be better than a table runner and matching place mats with cartoon angels on it, I'm just saying.

Then there are those gifts that are memorable, in a good way! The gifts that when you open it make you smile, gasp, shake your head and sincerely utter, "You shouldn't have." The gifts that make you realize that the giver really put some time and effort into choosing and purchasing/making/researching your gift. I've been lucky enough to be the receiver of quite a few thoughtful gifts. I thought I'd share a few today as the Holiday Shopping Madness goes into full swing.
  • A new knife. A Wusthof Chef's Knife to be exact. For years I've been wanting to replace my $19.99 knife block with an entire set of Wusthof knives. They're not cheap! But for the amount of chopping, slicing and dicing I do around these parts I think that they'd be indispensable. The Mr. started my set last year with that knife. Hopefully I'll find another one in my stocking this year!
  • Cake decorating class. On my ever growing Bucket List was to take a cake decorating class. My mom took one when she was younger and I've always wanted to learn to make those fancy cakes too. The Mr. gave me a class at the Kitchen Window, a great store if you like to bake/cook. I learned quite a few things and had a great time being elbow deep in frosting. Now I can make fancy cakes/cupcakes too!
  • A radio. When I was a pre-teen I wanted nothing more than to have my own radio. Something that I could have in my room and play my own music on. That Christmas I got one from Santa and I've never loved a present so much. It was one of my first tastes of self expression and freedom and it felt good. I remember staying up late and turning it on so I could barely hear it to listen to Loveline, hoping that my parent's wouldn't hear and make me turn it off. Ah, good times.

What was your best gift ever?

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