Is it just me, or is the entire male species extremely hard to shop for? I hope it’s just me because this really isn’t a trial I’d wish on anyone else. I have a feeling this is pretty common across the board, though. Men are just hard to buy gifts for!
Why is this?
Do they think we girls are equally hard to shop for?
My husband never seems to have any issues finding amazing gifts for me. Nope, the only real problem in that department is reigning him in! Not only does he procure a nice Christmas gift for me (and usually has it picked out in August or something crazy!), but he uses our kids as an excuse to find four MORE incredible gifts! One year it was a Kindle. Another time a pair of luxury silk pajamas which he refused to tell me the price of. As a postpartum baby gift he showed up with an iPad (I’ll admit, sometimes it’s tempting to have more babies!), and this year I’m getting– oh wait. I’m not supposed to know what I’m getting, but thank you so much to the manufacturer who thoughtfully printed it all over the outside of the box prior to delivering it to my doorstep! Seriously, what is so wrong with shipping things in a blank cardboard box? It’s no fun knowing what’s hiding under that shiny wrapping paper!
The no-longer-a-mystery gift… But shhhh… you’ll have to wait ’til Christmas to find out what it is… Cuz I’m ornery like that! Somebody needs to be surprised, right?
I stayed awake way too late the other night browsing Pinterest (which attempts to hold the answer to every problem in life!) for gift ideas for men and gifts for husbands. After two hours, yes, TWO HOURS, of browsing, you know what I concluded? Men must not like useful gifts. I can’t for the life of me imagine my hubby (or any guy I know!) even remotely enjoying cuff links with his initials carved into them, collar stays with a love note, a personalized tie with a picture of our kids, or a nap pod for his office at work? For real?! The majority of the gift suggestions assured me that most women are merely grasping at straws when it comes to finding the perfect gift for their men. Some of my favorites were:
A year of dates (all neatly planned and packed into 12 envelopes) – My husband is not a fan of dates as evidenced by our complete lack of them over the past 10 years.
A scrapbook of our love story – Well, considering he doesn’t like to pose for pictures either, this would be a very sparse scrapbook. Do guys even look at scrapbooks anyway? I think that’s more of a sentimental mom thing…
A cheesey wall plaque that reads like a Hallmark card – Trust me, my husband only notices the walls if I point them out to him. He couldn’t care less what I hang on them unless it was a life-size picture of myself or Kobe Bryant!
Masculine lotions and/or candles and beard-care kits – Really? I’ve never seen my guy put any kind of ANYTHING on his skin in all the time I’ve known him. Shaving cream and sunscreen aside…
Then there are all the inappropriate-to-unwrap-in-our-childrens’-presence gifts – Do couples really embarrass their kids like that on Christmas?! Besides that, my husband’s opinion of a new nightgown is, “Does it look good on the floor?” ‘Nuff said about THAT…
Then there is this stuff called Poo Pouri… Now that actually IS simmering away in my brain. I found a DIY recipe from Karrie at Happy Money Saver! That could be entertaining to leave under the Christmas tree, but technically it would be me giving a gift to myself since I appear to be the only one bothered by all those male odors emanating from the bathroom… Still, I will be mixing some of that up in the near future
The majority of gift ideas for men were the usual tools, grill gear, tech gadgets, and clothes. My husband isn’t a tinkerer, doesn’t have time to grill, researches his own gadgets, and does his own clothes shopping. Again, unhelpful ideas. The result of those two hours of searching was that I now feel like I am either incredibly uncreative or that there must be something wrong with my husband that he doesn’t want a Bearded Ski Mask or Silk Suit Pajamas. Oh my word! Who thinks up these things?! How bored do you have to get to think sleeping in a tie or wearing an overgrown chin-wig is a brilliant idea?
So far, three out of the four gifts from our kids were things that he told me to order. Yes, I am that pathetic at choosing gifts 🙁 Wanna know what I gave my own father for Christmas? …Long John pants… Yep. I think it’s safe to say that gift-giving is most definitely not my love language.
So what’s a girl to do?
Well, for now I am going to wrap the gifts from the kids, then I’ll probably spend too much time browsing one of my favorite catalogs, Uncommon Goods. They are chock-full of unique ideas. I wish people would shop for me from their catalog! Some of these travel-themed gifts are so cool! Scratch-off map, anyone? And I’ll take an Indonesian Batik Bag, thank you!
Next, I need to take a good look at my husband and who he is, not what gift manufacturers think he should be. He is obviously not the debonaire gentleman sporting custom cuff links and designer house shoes. Nope, my guy wears Batman pajama pants and Target-special slippers. He’s not a fan of public displays of romance; his idea of a date is kicking back and watching the latest release from Red Box from the comfort of our living room (look at it this way: at least I don’t have to shop for fancy date-night clothes… and I DO abhor shopping…). He’ll bring home fish-n-chips and the most amazing mac-n-cheese EVER rather than stand over a smoky grill and risk burning a tender chicken breast. He is a French-Californian. What that means is that he was born with a massive dose of French joie de vie along with a large side of California casual. It really is an amazing combination because there isn’t much that upsets him, and he is happy as a hibernating bear with the simple comforts of life: good food, cozy quilts, warm slippers, a cup of coffee, and a good movie. When he’s not exhausted from juggling work, soccer, and family he is quite the goofball. Case in point, he leaves little surprises like this in my camera roll if I leave my phone unsupervised…
Yep, that’s my husband : ) His priorities usually bypass appearances and settle on a peaceful and comfortable home life. So, rather than wearing myself out in the search for that elusive, “perfect” gift portraying romantic love, I’ll shift my focus to things that make our time together at home relaxing and regenerating this season. My love language may not be gift-giving, but it IS spending quality time with the people I love.
At the end of the day, I’ll just ask him what else he needs that he won’t buy for himself, after which he’ll send me an e-mail with links to a variety of the same item which I can then choose from and still partially surprise him Christmas morning. And we will all be happy : )
What are YOU getting your husband for Christmas?