When I was little I enjoyed Christmas I think. There were only a few occasions where I received gifts where I was excited or surprised that the person actually knew me enough to know what I would enjoy.
What’s odd is that these gifts came from my brother. The only thing is he kind of ruined his gifts by including himself.
One year it was tickets to see John Mellencamp. I was probably 15 at the time. It would’ve been one of best shows ever if my brother hadn’t been drunk and trying to take other people’s seats the entire time. I spent most of my time worrying about him getting thrown out.
Another gift was a limo for the night, tickets to see Blue Man Group, reservations and an all paid for meal at a 5 star Restaurant in Boston and a Dual Piano Bar. Again all of this would’ve been wonderful if my brother wasn’t part of the deal. If he didn’t smoke in the limo, get drunk at the restaurant, and start a fight at the Piano Bar.
I enjoy giving gifts more than receiving them. I love seeing someone’s face light up. I remember when my Dad bought my Mom the first diamonds she ever owned. He wrapped them up so she had to open 7 different boxes to get to them but the look on her face had me crying for an hour. She was so shocked that he did it on his own. He did it because he loved her. It was outside his comfort zone and I can’t picture him going to a Jewelers by himself but he did. It was worth it to see her face.
Every year at Blockbuster we had Secret Santa with the Managers, HR, and the owner. We had a minimum of $50 which is kind of high for most places and I usually went over it.
One Manager was huge wrestling fan. I mean he went to every event and did some photography for them. He went to conventions all over the U.S. too. I got his name one year. What no one knew is that I was a wrestling fan, my brother was also. I had several autographed pictures of wrestlers in the Hall of Fame, Chief Jay Strongbow, Gorilla Monsoon, and Pedro Morales. I put them in nice frames and also got him his favorite candy and Gift Certificate for his wife’s favorite restaurant. When he opened it he said “Hey, thanks”.
I got the owner and knew a lot about her already but worked with one of her kids so I did some more research. She loved this one jewelry designer from Newport. I got her a charm necklace from the designer with a charms from her life. One charm was a beautiful palm tree with a stone it and the other a tennis racket. Both gold. Then they had a matching bracelet that I got with charms to represent the kids. I also made her Peanut Butter Balls Gluten Free because she also has Celiac. Her response was “Thanks”.
I gave my sister a necklace one year that had two Ds entwined (both our first names begin with D) there was also a garnet in it. I had the back engraved with a personal note. It was Platinum, her favorite. She responded like everyone else and never wore it. Never talked about it. It wasn’t the cost. It was the fact that I took time, thought and love to do that and it didn’t matter. I know she has no idea where it is.
SOME GOOD NEWS
My Dad has talked about wanting to read John McCain’s family memoirs “Faith of My Father’s” for years. With Mr. McCain’s health in the news lately I decided to order the book for my Dad. I even had it gift wrapped. It came yesterday in a gorgeous forest green gauze gift bag. My Dad looked so confused. He had no idea what it was. I left the room while he opened it. I heard him while he opened it. “I’ll be Goddamned!” then I heard his voice break. I started to cry in the kitchen because I did it, I gave him something that mattered. He came and hugged me for the longest time and I was happy in that moment.