Wednesday, February 09, 2011

A present. And more presents.

I am of the belief that my best friend, Lucy, is the best best friend. In the whole world. Ever. I’m always hesitant to turn down an invitation to hang out with her – even if it means cancelling plans that I have with my not-even-close-to-best friend: the treadmill.

I was still at the office when Lucy called to invite me to dinner last night. My gym plans were scrapped in a nanosecond.

We puttered around her kitchen, putting together our meal and brainstorming birthday presents for Colleen. Lately, Colleen has been fancying the domestic arts. Now that she’s living with that new boyfriend of hers, she is in full-on nesting mode.

Thus, after years of disinterest in the kitchen, she is overcome with the desire to learn how to cook. Which I happen to find absolutely darling, because she cannot successfully boil up a packet of ramen. And once we were at a Mexican restaurant where they made tableside guacamole and she gagged – she honestly gagged – because the sight of it grossed her out. Even though she loves guacamole.

Oh, that Colleen. Adore her. But she is completely nuts.

Lucy and I decided that we’re going to encourage Colleen’s search for her inner domestic diva with her birthday presents. We picked out a couple of cookbooks. Lucy set her sights on a bunch of kitchen utensils that are undoubtedly missing from the boyfriend’s bachelor kitchen. And I jumped on Etsy – right there on the counter of Lucy’s kitchen – and ordered her the cutest damn apron.

Purchased from Etsy seller Boojiboo.

She is going to go absolutely wild for this apron. Blue and brown are her favorite colors. She loves anything with a vintage feel. It is just the apron for Colleen and I’m so so so excited to give it to her.

I love buying the perfect present. Even if I have to suffer through gift-purchasing anxiety in order to find it.

And, while we’re on the topic, I never bragged about my favorites among the presents that I gifted at the holidays. And I meant to. But I got caught up in my own gifts (Wheee! Materialistic!) and never completed the task.

Because I know that you’re, like, so way curious and because it has only been seven short weeks since Christmas, here it is. The So Midwestern Christmas Anxiety-Ridden Favorite Gifts of 2010.

For Meg, a pair of Nike Free Run+ shoes, in the loudest color combination that I could find.

For my grandma, this adorable Scandinavian table runner.

Table linens for my mom, too. I bought them all from the same Scandinavian store, Fjorn, which carries all sorts of beautiful/fun/unique Scandinavian gifts that are perfect for anybody in my mom’s very Norwegian family.

Meg insisted on that we get our mom this Kyocera ceramic knife set, which was featured on Oprah’s Favorite Things list.

Mom was actually in the market for some new knives, so she really appreciated this gift. It’s always nice to pick up a gift that the recipient really needs.

Buying Christmas presents for my father this year was pretty unpleasant, considering the very rocky fall that our family had due to his incredible display of stupidity. His presents from Meg and me were quite generic and safe. I picked up this book, Fathers and Daughters and Sports because I wanted to give him one gift with a little bit of meaning behind it and our athletics have always played an enormous role in our relationship with him.

He doesn’t generally read anything but the newspaper, so maybe the gift was a little misdirected but I’ll read it one day so, even if he doesn’t, it isn’t a complete waste.

Finally, my favorite gift of the season: the custom pet portrait that I bought from another fabulous Etsy seller. I drew my cousin Liz’s name for our cousin gift exchange.

Purchased from Etsy seller FuzzyMug.

She’s totally obsessed with her dog and really hard to shop for and – hello! – the gift was so perfectly her. I was so excited to give it to her. (I actually had it printed in a color other than black, which upped the cuteness factor by 200%.)

And those are the best presents, right? The ones that are so perfect that you can’t wait to give.


Thisisme said...


the gifts were great too!! (; The dog print especially!

Laurie said...

I have an apron from that Etsy seller! I love it but should probably wear it more often. You are one of the most thoughtful gift givers ever!

my life is brilliant said...

LOVE!!! THAT!!! APRON!!! It's like the Jessie Steele (sp?) ones I've been eying forever but haven't bought because they're a little expensive.

These are a little cheaper -- score!

Also love everyone else's gifts. I'm totally checking out Meg's shoes AND the dog drawing. LOVE them!

What a great Christmas! I'm convinced more than ever that we should be real-life friends. ;)

A said...

MLIB: Yes. Seriously. I'm moving in to your house (hopefully K won't mind) and I will buy you good presents. :)

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