Friday, December 12, 2008

a hard case

Sister MD asked me, "What don't you buy for yourself?" It was a perfectly innocent question, but I've been thinking about it for days.

I think I am in the category of "hard to shop for". I should have been born during the Depression. I don't need much. I don't want much. I don't really like to shop. I'm not good at spending money. I don't have a list of ideas for gifts to share with my family. How did I become one of these people?

As a kid, I would have a very specific idea of an item I wanted. It would invariably be hard to locate and somewhat pricey. I would visit store after store and everything would be Not Quite Right. Sometimes I couldn't state what was wrong, but I knew I'd know the right one when I saw it. And I usually did. I drove my mom and Sister MD crazy.

Sister MD was always a gatherer. The more low-priced items, the better. But unfortunately, the more she spent, the more I held tight to my wallet. Eventually her spending would frustrate me so much I'd be unable to make myself spend a cent and I'd go home without my desired purchases. Oddly, I've found that some friends actually influence me to loosen my wallet. With others I can enjoy vicarious shopping and not mind coming home empty-handed.

Harriet has just posted twelve things she wants for Christmas. Her struggle to come up with them is the same as mine, "a) that the gift was picked out by someone else who thought I would like it is a crucial component of any present and b) ditto on the element of surprise."

So here I am at Christmas once again. And I don't know what I want. I want to remodel the kids' bathroom. I want to terrace the backyard. I want to improve my kitchen (remember, the new fridge doesn't count). But things I want that are less than 10K? Harder.


  1. The only things I could think of that weren't big ticket items the other day were new dish towels. The person asking was disappointed, but I really do need dish towels.

  2. First off, thanks for stopping by and commenting. I may have to re-read my own post in order to not post what I am really feeling right now...not sure what will win.

    I am the same way. What I really want is my hubby to get promoted, a new house and washer/dryer. Dangit.

  3. Once again, I'm going to say that you sound so much like me! I really don't want or need anything. I have more books than I'll ever read in my lifetime. I have enough jewelry and clothes and dishes and things. I told my husband I'd be perfectly happy with a new KitchenAid Mixer (I've had mine since 1981!) and that he could give it to me as a combo birthday-Christmas gift. I also told him I'd be fine going and buying it myself since I wasn't sure which color I'd like (and if I could find that color without a lot of searching). And now, with the economy the way it is, I'm rethinking this choice since my old Mixer still works! I can buy a new one when it finally dies.

    Maybe I'll tell him to get me a new Southern Living Cookbook. Then we'll both be happy. :)

  4. sounds like maybe home deopot gift cards would be good? or what about a "date night?" tix to symphny or play with a check to cover baby-sitting. that's what i want this year!!